A good chess player is someone who knows when to bypass short-term gains for the sake of a much bigger prize. Skipping over an opportunity to grab a pawn early in the game can be the key to capturing the king many moves later.
As is turns out, that ability to keep the big picture in mind is also a key to understanding the practice of long-term SEO.
Long-term SEO is a concept that’s turning up more and more SEO circles. Long-Term SEO: How To Win For Years, Not Days, was a popular session at SMX 2014 and SearchEngineLand.com recently published a very thorough piece on long-term SEO strategies.
At its core, long-term SEO is all about embracing those (boring) white hat techniques that deliver results over the long haul, while resisting the temptation of flashy, short-term gains.
Human Behavior Forces Algorithm Updates
Getting into the long-term SEO mindset involves taking responsibility for your own SEO strategies and focusing your efforts on a few big picture goals. Panelists at the SMX session pointed out that webmasters drive Google’s SEO policies, not the other way around.
Rhea Drysdale, CEO of Outspoken Media nailed that point home when told audience members, “human behavior forces algorithm updates.”
The suggestion here is that if everyone stopped looking for shortcuts and started focusing on the big picture, draconian algo updates like Penguin might not have been necessary in the first place.
Embrace ‘Outdated Techniques’
Establishing a good reputation is a laudable long-term goal and Trulia SEO director, Mark Munroe, suggests some reputation building tips that might surprise you.
He says article directories, guest blogging, link exchanges and other, seemingly outdated, SEO techniques can be very useful in establishing a good reputation.
Using these methods in moderation is not something that’s going to cause problems for sites with legitimate content. The real problem starts when SEOs start relying on them too much for short-term, but ultimately empty, gains.
Google Telegraphs its Punches
Google’s long-term road map for SEOs isn’t really a secret for anyone who cares to look into it. (Whether it’s fair or reasonable is another argument entirely.) To that end, long-term SEO advocates suggest keeping Google’s goals in mind when developing your own SEO goals.
“What it means for publishers is that they need to focus their SEO strategies on where Google is going, not on ‘what works now,”EriceEnge, CEO of Stone Temple Consulting told an SMX West audience, “The best way to do that is to build your reputation online with your target audience.”
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