A lot has changed in Search engine marketing in the last year. An awful lot. We have seen small hotels fall of search – see Hotels Search Engine marketing & SEO is not working. Now we have a statisticall significant study that confirms that search has changed dramatically in less that a year.
The study analyzed 10,000 searches across 300,000 URLs on the top three pages of Google UK,It has summaries its findings in an infographics available at http://blog.kissmetrics.com/top-ranked-sites-google/’
Here are my summary of the take aways:
1. Search Favours the Big Brands.
Its almost impossible for a small company to build the authority, presence and trust of a big brand. But their are ways to influence still – Read my book (above) we go into great lengths on this.
2. Which Social Signals Matter Most?
It picks out Burberry and Google Plus for special mention
With over 2 million followers, Burberry is the top most-followed brand on Google+
Also Google +1’s are given the most ranking recognition, followed closely by Facebook.
3. Backlinks are Still Important.
Keywords rick baclinks and Keyword-added H1’s can hurt, rather than help, your ranking.
Long page titles also can affect your site negatively!
Google’s own advertising program are given a slight nudge.
Word count around the 400-525 mark seems to perform best
4. Domain Name with Keywords Not working as they used to
Google is paying less attention to this and focusing more on placement of the keyword in the title, URL, and in both internal and external links. A well-balanced internal linking structure is vital.
5. Quality Content Counts
Quality content is still important as are the number of images and strong internal links.
So far, the shift seems to be toward less emphasis on “keyword tricks” (such as registering domain names with the chosen keyword in them or peppering the keyword in H1 tags) and more emphasis on quality (with the backlinks and social shares to back it up).
Content linked to Google authorship always ranks better now.
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