There are things that change about SEO, then there are things that don’t change. For instance, Google has, just in the last year, made some changes to local search that put more emphasis on certain criteria and those changes are designed to make finding local information easier for searchers. However, all search is still primarily based on the two things that it has always been based on: Content and Links.
Content: We’re talking on-page here. Your web pages – a la your website – are important because they contain content that will be ranked against your competitors in the search engines. That content can be helpful to your audience or not, but it will be ranked according to Google’s criteria for the search terms that you are targeting. Content always has been and always will be important for search.
Links: While content is more predictable on your part, links are less so; nevertheless, they are somewhat predictable, and controllable. There are different kinds of links, of course, and you should pay attention to all of them. Three categories of links you need to be familiar with are:
- Inbound links - These are links from other sites that point into yours.
- Internal links – These are links from one page to another within your website.
- Outbound links – These are links pointing from your website to other pages on the Web.
In terms of SEO, these are listed in order of importance. Inbound links are necessary to make sure your site is crawled and to ensure that your web pages are associated with particular key phrases and deemed important for those phrases. Internal links serve the same purpose, but you have got to manage those effectively or they can work against you. Outbound links are good to a lesser degree, but you can get by without them.
When it comes to SEO, some things will never change. I’m banking on content and links being two of those.