Wednesday, January 29, 2014

Why Guest Blogging is a Bad Idea?

Every since Google has brought major updates and the rankings of projects have begun to suffer, there has been much speculation on the use of Guest Blogging as an effective method of SEO. Guest Blogging is nothing but asking the authoritative people to write blog posts for you, in your own blog. The main reasons for which this is done are the following:

1. Getting quality content from authoritative people from time to time.
2. This quality content would add to the value of blog and bring satisfaction to the readers of the blog. Your readers would come to know about the person who is writing. This will help Guest Blogger to enhance his/her reach.
3. Even the guest blogger would share it with his/her community or network of friends or followers, making your blog popular. This would, in turn, help you in tapping the network of guest blogger and increase your own community.

So, in a way, this is a mutually beneficial relationship in which all stakeholders including the readers stand to gain. But, this is not all that simple said and done. There is a need to take care of the following points when this is to be used for SEO purposes:

1. Ensure that some authoritative or popular person contributes to your blog. Do not invite just another blogger for writing the post for you unless he has a good following of his own.
2. Stay away from putting anchor text links aimed at promoting certain pages of your site. Remember, this is done only for the sake of adding more informative and quality content from experts so that you readers get to add substantial value to their knowledge. It is about development of quality content and marketing it in mutual networks for enhancing brand presence in larger communities.

Why Is It A Bad Idea?

1. The actual beneficial use of this method of content development and marketing is restricted to only a handful of people in the vast ocean of SEO community that is present globally.
2. There might be reservations among the guest bloggers on writing for blogs since this might affect them adversely.
3. Search Engines may perceive that guest blogging is being done by using the paid methods and there might be a closer watch on the activities on these bloggers or blogging platforms. The bad thing is that your blog or your guest blogger might also come under this watch-list.
4. Except the high quality resources, this method has high chances to be misused in an indiscriminate way which would invite the wrath of search engines sooner or later.

Monday, January 27, 2014

SEO Is Only On-Page, Rest Is All Social Media

SEO is the game of links and keywords. The only thing that you need to do is to find the right resources. Well, this is what most of the people thought of as recently as only 2 years back. And, how this online marketing method has changed in these 2 years has completely taken the turf off the hardcore SEO practitioners. Now, if you ask them when my site will begin to rank, the answers can at best be vague. Genuine practitioners will not give the timelines any more. Rather, a more cautious and guarded response can be expected. And, if there are people who do give you the timelines, it is better to bargain with them to pay better.

This is actually a paradoxical situation. SEO is vitally important but, unfortunately, the going-ons at Google in the last 2 years have led to avoidance of time-based assurances from the SEO companies who understand it better. But, do the clients understand this? They need results. The faster, the better. And, there is precisely the trap which the so-called ingenious companies would lay for getting money out of them.

SEO has two components: on-page and off-page. A well developed site, keeping in view the likes of search engines and suitably optimized for it, would automatically rank good in search engines but it may not good enough to be on the first page. For this, off-page push is required and this is where most of the SEO companies and their experts are skeptical. This is a well-drawn list of activities as well as resources which can be used but one is not sure what impact will these have on the ranks. Its all hit and trial and shooting the arrows in dark. Yes, experience comes to the aid and is the main rescuer but putting oneself within the air tight container of experience without letting the fresh air of emerging trends enter is a dangerous situation. Experience of off-page optimization has to be enriched with continuous research, not to find the new resources but to know what all creative thought would be a genuine work done for the business in question.

Articles, blogs, forums, business directories, blog commenting, classifieds listing and other such resources have been extensively and indiscriminately used and, rather, abused. Hardcore SEO practitioners would not say that they use these resources any more because they have been hard hit already using these in a wrong way. Does Google say that you shall not use these? I have not heard Matt Cutts say it is wrong to use this or that resource anywhere. If viewed from a genuine perspective, these resources do have relevance of their own and provide vital platforms for sharing information. How we choose and use these is a matter which shall be of prime concern. Due to their persistent abuse, Google might have devalued links from these resources, especially the ones which are shallow.

SEO gurus have turned to the safe side of using social media resources which can help them create the networks and get them the likes, fans … with the definite assurance that the user engagement will definitely not be penalized when the networks are being created genuinely. This is the safest approach to SEO nowadays and it has only two aspects, one, create a quality and innovative content and, two, share it with the social networks. Let them judge how good is the effort and Google will judge from there. So, where is the concern for the link building gone, especially the so-called ‘follow’ ones?