Doing no die-hard SEO at all. Or at least that’s what it seems.
Yeah, so I woke up this morning and checked my traffic stats for the 3 blogs I usually manage. I went to Google Webmaster tools and saw a low traffic run-rate this last weekend.
While weekends tend to be somewhat lower than during the week (for all my sites), I definitely noticed the lowest search queries I’ve got in the last 3 months.
At first, I didn’t care that much. I mean, that happens sometimes, right?
But then I was checking my twitter feed and a blog post from Anna Hoffman, from Traffic generation Caffe caught my attention. The article in fact is named: Traffic Generation Cafe Plummets : Google Strikes Again?
And i was like: WHAT???
I mean, how such a big traffic site can get hit by Google and plummet down in a day?
Am I missing something or maybe it’s just the header to caught my attention?
Anyway, I opened my Macbook (I was checking everything via my iPhone before) and went directly to her latest post, where she explains how the search queries, and thus also traffic, got hit by Google in the last weekend very hard, reducing the organic traffic on more than half.
Then I remembered that the traffic had been unexpectedly low this weekend and so I went to my stats again and confirmed it. Two of my blogs received this update too.
From those 2 blogs, one is barely new, so I was getting some searches from Google and Yahoo, and less than 100 queries on search engines. Well, it went down to almost 10 queries.
The second one is a bigger one I have, and usually received around 150-200 visits per day, appearing on Google’s results at least 3,500 times per day. And suddenly, it looked like this:
As you can see, it suddenly went down to 2,000 search queries a day. It was receiving at least 3,000 queries and from one day to another it just dropped 30% of it’s organic traffic. It seems that Anna’s blog suffered even more, and what I can tell by the comments, people are angry, but really, who did not expected this kind of update?
From my POV, and I do share this with many others, Google is trying to create a more natural ecosystem for everyone, and SEO is becoming less and less SEO at the end.
The update is supposed to “affect 0.6% of English-US queries to a noticeable degree” and is unrelated to Panda/Penguin.
However, it seems the update didn’t hit Stream SEO at all. It’s receiving the same kind of traffic and queries from the last weeks. In fact, it’s been growing slowly, even this weekend.
Is SEO dead?
I don’t think so. In fact, I can actually say that SEO is more alive than ever, but it’s just it has evolved so much compared to the last years, that sometimes it can be overwhelming to achieve.
But let me tell you something. I don’t focus on SEO on my blogs that much. In fact, the one you’re watching above on the statistics has no SEO at all. Of course, this changes with Stream SEO as I do the basic SEO to help Google find my page and serve it to its readers, experiment with it and then let you know my findings, but believe me; I don’t do any super-special SEO, and it doesn’t take more more than 5 minutes per post.
Here are the things I still do about SEO:
- Do a proper Keyword research: after all, I still want to solve my readers problems, and give the most out of it. I use a combination of Google Keywords tool and Market Samurai Keyword Tool.
- Use only one SEO plugin: this is WordPress SEO by Yoast. It helps me keep track of my meta description, SEO Title, keyword density and more. But as long as I can create great content, I tend to ignore the rest.
- The rest, comes along with Google Webmaster tools, to help index my sites and some link building by commenting (rich comments, no SPAM) and getting some backlinks on Social networks and blogs.
That’s all! Yes, and it seems this last update didn’t hit this blog at all. or at least, none that I’ve seen on the last days after the update.
Content is King
Yes, my dear readers, even if you’ve read that content is no king anymore, I still differ from your POV. Content is king and it always be, because google is trying to get the best content for its readers, and even though the algorithms evolute and a difficult way to foresee, the final objective is still to serve the best results to the people who is searching something online.
And with the best results, you can get better sales, conversions and the rest. Get a low quality product – or service in this case – and the rest is pretty much doomed.
So, how can you finally beat Google’s algorithm updates?
By focusing on your last mile. That is, your readers.
If you still create great content, you’ll have better conversions. If you do great reviews, articles, podcasts, videos or whatever you do, your readers will still support you.
You will get a like on Facebook, or their email on your optin list, and they will follow you to the death – OK, maybe not that far, but at least they will follow you and your great content to any URL.
So, instead of focusing on how to beat next Google’s update, think on how can you beat your competition with better content. At the end, Google will award you with better quality traffic, and more search queries, you’ll have more likes, retweets and members on your email list, and you’ll finally overcome the fear of the next google’s update.
Of course, some basic SEO doesn’t hurt, as the idea is still to help Google to rank your articles, index them and serve them to its readers, but the point here is that you don’t need to spend 50% of your time just on SEO. Give it a 5% or maybe 10%, and no more. I can almost bet that in 2-3 years, SEO will be so different that the only common factor will be the content, again.
So, did the last update hit your blog or not? If so, how hard was it?
Leave your comments and thoughts about it and… HAPPY BLOGGING!