Sometimes, with SEO, even knowledgeable optimization experts can find themselves in head-scratching moments. Take the recent Panda update. While the stated target was low-quality sites, many SEO’s have cried foul – emphatically claiming to be collateral damage. I, myself have seen some SERP reshuffling that doesn’t square with Google’s corporate line regarding this latest algo update.
So what’s the white-hat search engine optimizer to do? Chasing and/or trying to decipher the ever-changing Google algorithm is a) not entirely white-hat, b) not a sustainable long-term strategy and c) a great way to drive oneself bonkers! However, sometimes the folks from Mountain View provide a few hints as to what us good guys can do to really make our organic traffic sing.
Earlier this month, while the industry was obsessed with Pandas, we may have received such a clue from Google via their VC arm, Google Ventures. Google Ventures was a key contributor to a $32 million investment round for Hubspot. If you aren’t familiar with Hubspot, you probably should be. Rand Fishkin over at SEOmoz has a nice write-up on how this investment signifies that inbound marketing is gaining traction.
Hubspot seeks to simplify the process of generating fresh, relevant content and then promoting said content via social media and email marketing. This investment by Google, combined with all of the recent flurry about how the search engines are using social media signals in organic search results and the Panda update, the message seems to be clear…er.
And what is that message? Create compelling, meaningful content, grow your social sphere and make sure that those two things play nice. So really, the new message is pretty close to the old message, now isn’t it? The “content is king” mantra got lost in the noise of content farms and link schemes. Now that social media is becoming such a key component to SEO, will we see these signals misused as well?