The bane of many SEOs and website owners is trying to keep up with what Google is doing. It’s funny that no matter how many times through its various channels Google tells small businesses to publish a site that focuses on the end user, not the search engines, the message never seems to resonate long or loud enough.
In a Webmaster Help video released on Monday, Matt Cutts answered a question about whether or not to concentrate on ranking in organic search or to leverage social media. His answer, was create, “the highest quality content for users”. But why does the distinguished engineer from the internet’s most powerful search engine keep giving the same advice?
The answer is he is developing software to think like humans. Humans, of course, already reason and think like humans.
Quality Content and Organic Search
The real problem is too many people compare oranges to apples. Google, Bing, Yahoo, Twitter, Facebook, LinkedIn, even Amazon all have their own proprietary search engines. Some are designed to crawl as much of the internet as possible, while the others are limited to their own company.
What Mr. Cutts is trying to tell anyone who will listen is that the search engines will always be updating their signals as technology becomes more advanced. People, however, are already at the point where the search engines want to go. In other words, all these updates are necessary because software must be improved to deliver the expected results.
“So rather than trying to figure out reverse engineering our algorithm and trying to find all the different ways to rank higher and trying to take shortcuts, as long as you’re trying to make a fantastic site that people love, that’s really compelling, that they are always going back to, that’s the sort of thing that puts you on the same side as Google,” —Matt Cutts, Google Chief Webspam Engineer.
Another way of looking at it is humans are already “in-the-know”; search engines, are hardware and software, machines which constantly need to be tweaked to produce the best results.
Mr. Cutts is essentially saying, it doesn’t matter what Google or Bing do because the goal is provide the best possible match for a query. Therefore, it’s largely a waste of time to implement a strategy that is designed to get the most from an update today because tomorrow, that update may not mean a thing.
A Consistent but Comprehensive Approach
The way past all of this is to take the same advice Mr. Cutts has been treating his audience to time and again. Social media outreach, along with content marketing, proves its effectiveness for many small businesses. “I’m all for having eggs in lots of different baskets,” Cutts says in the video.
Utilizing different channels to craft an image is how so many companies succeed in increasing their site traffic, getting more leads, and capturing more conversions.
The bottom line is in order to get the most out of a website, the best, highest quality content has to live there, otherwise, even with a mountain of a marketing budget, people won’t return because they are not finding what they are looking for. It’s not about engineering algorithms, it’s about serving customers. Give them the information they need and they will return the favor.