|Best Practices for Site Ranking... Working Less and Getting More?|
As the title suggests, i am wondering if there are some ways to get ranked nicely these days, without putting much of SEO effort.
At the moment, i do not spend any effort on SEO on the website. My team simply generates decent quality (not very high quality) content which costs me around $3-3.5 per article on average (as the staff is in India and on regular salary).
The articles aren't copied or rewritten. Those are having topics like the latest happenings.
Few things that we do not do for last few years.
1. Link Building
2. Directory Submission
3. Article Marketing
I was thinking of building email list, but i am not from those marketing experts, who can sell anything and make people subscribe to list.
We do have social media sharing buttons, but do not promote much on FB or G+.
So, basically, we are depending on decent quality content only.
How are you ranking and how is your traffic with this approach? And how competitive is the niche you target?
ranking : moderate (barely covering costs these days). we do not rely on keywords as such.
traffic : grows gradually, but sometimes falls (although it isn't depending much on the algorithms) no impact of penguin or panda
competitive : these are not niche sites. general content is on the websites. mostly, health, business or technology content.
I don't see a very good long term strategy towards ranking three dollar articles. At the very least, you'd need really high quality content, or you have to find a way to be way useful to your users. Or both.
|I don't see a very good long term strategy towards ranking three dollar articles. At the very least, you'd need really high quality content, or you have to find a way to be way useful to your users. Or both. |
On the other hand, look at the success of UGC and aggregator sites, which owe most of their success to Google. In an essay titled "How Not to Launch a Site for Women," Elizabeth Spiers wrote:
"The only way that will ever work is if you HuffPo the thing and deluge the Internet with a tsunami of mediocre content that is so voluminous that it cannot be ignored, at least by search engines."
(Ms. Spiers's essay was about Bustle, a women's site that has been bankrolled by a number of venture capitalists, including--get this--Google Ventures. Yep, Google is backing the kind of content that Panda was supposed to kill.)
I am talking about 100 pages of content everyday, on different websites.
I am not sure, if members here will consider say 20 stories on each website per day, as a good number.
I am covering costs and making marginal money. But, i am wondering, if that can be improved.
@netmeg, i can tell that i do not feel like spending more money on creating better quality content as i think it won't give enough ROI considering the flux at Google and lower earnings.
|I am not sure, if members here will consider say 20 stories on each website per day, as a good number. |
You should concentrate on quality, not quantity.
|You should concentrate on quality, not quantity. |
I wish this were true. Yes we all hear it all the time but as was illustrated by EditorialGuy. Huffpo has some of the worst content yet Google loves it.
I work with some companies that do meme and image type sites and they basically have 3 lines of text and an image on a page and you would scream if you saw some of the stuff they rank for. All content is user generated and they get at least 1000 pieces a day built for them.
yes they do basic on page seo (which I help them with) but what Google seems to like about them is that there is minimum 1000 new pieces of content for google to spider daily.
I think Google would prefer to see user interaction over quality content these days. Which is quite frankly pretty sad.
|I think Google would prefer to see user interaction over quality content these days |
not agreeing or disagreeing with this statement but if I were google I would look at it like this:
User interaction = programmatically measurable
Quality = subjective, not easily measurable
|User interaction = programmatically measurable |
Quality = subjective, not easily measurable
Trouble is, what does user interaction measure? If we're talking about blog comments, the degree of user interaction may simply indicate the nature of the audience (people who like to comment, or who use the commenting mechanism to promote their own agendas) and whether the publisher and headline writer are pandering to that audience.
In the search-engine space, for example, Search Engine Land focuses on high-quality, in-depth search journalism, while Search Engine Roundtable is more of an aggregator site that runs short posts with links to the original sources (such as SEL or Webmaster World forum threads). Yet Search Engine Roundtable posts typically get more comments than SEL stories do, probably because SER attracts a crowd of angry regulars and has little, if any, moderation.
Just as important, many high-quality Web sites, articles, papers, etc. don't have mechanisms for "user interaction" such as commenting systems or social buttons. Since Google claims not to use Google Analytics data in its search rankings, there isn't a lot for Google to measure other than search behavior (such as "bounce back to search" after the user clicks on a result).
|I wish this were true. Yes we all hear it all the time but as was illustrated by EditorialGuy. Huffpo has some of the worst content yet Google loves it. |
It also has good content, and it's "good enough" for a huge audience. I'm not defending HuffPo, but defining quality content is not easy; one person's garbage is the next person's quality content.
Which is empirically better - in depth, knowledge content that only a small percentage of people are ever interested in, read through or share, or more generic content with less depth that goes viral and gets thousands and thousands of pageviews and shares?
My answer (and agenda) would no doubt be different from a search engine's answer (and agenda).
The best strategy for site ranking is to get a free blogspot blog and hire a non-native English speaker to write your content for you. It is working brilliantly for someone in my industry and apparently the Google algo gives extra credit for sites operated on a Google owned domain and all the typos!
|Which is empirically better - in depth, knowledge content that only a small percentage of people are ever interested in, read through or share, or more generic content with less depth that goes viral and gets thousands and thousands of pageviews and shares? |
I'd say it depends on the topic and the intended audience.
Even if Google did a better job with personalization (e.g., if Google could target results by reading level), it might choke when serving up results for a searcher like Dr. Gregory House of House, M.D. who reads medical journals for work but watches soap operas and monster-truck races for fun.
Maybe general-purpose search engines are obsolete, and we need dedicated search engines such as:
- Lowbrow Search dot com, for cat videos, celebrity gossip, and political conspiracy rumors.
- Highbrow Search dot com, for use when editorial quality matters.
- Shallow Search dot com, for users with ADD or limited reading skills.
- In-depth Search dot com, for users who want comprehensive information on a topic.
Shallow content works if visitors find it useful. If you can crank out shallow content at a insanely high speed and low cost with huge quantity that is not spammed.
Money will follow.
"usefulness" is key. Shallow content that is not useful well...is just spam and will be deindexed and penalized.
This is only a long term strategy if you become so big that you have repeated users that seek out your shallow content when they know their needs can be fulfilled fast within your "shallow site".
If I am looking for shallow kitty pictures, and SERP gives me "detailed kitty research" and "shallow kitty pic site". I would go for shallow kitty pic site, because I don't give a #@$ about kitty research.
Now...for total % of internet users, how many % look for cute kitty pics, and how many % are actually kitty lovers who wanna know everything? I bet the shallow kitty pic site will make more money simply by the numbers. But it doesn't mean that the detail kitty research cannot make money neither due to highly targeted potential sales and affiliate marketing.
It's all about strategy and monetizing your target users.
What Netmeg said makes sense.
It is not rocket science.
As a reader I can tell in about 3 seconds whether a site has genuine content, is useful and written with in-depth knowledge and passion. You need not look further than Netmeg's sites to see the recipe for success.
Websites created on 3 dollar articles churned out by Indians serve no useful function but add crud to the web I think.
Lurching off on another tangent:
Huffpo has some useful content but I look on it as a shallow and unreliable source of information. But it is well packaged and I guess there must be people who enjoy that fare.
It really ticks me off to see pr web press releases clutter up my Google News alerts and when I click on the link it takes me to no end of FLUFF articles. 99% of these are advertorials placed on Huffpo, SF Gate and other gateways for FLUFF.
I wish Google News had a way to exclude all these press release sites and allow me to select only sites I choose.