Matt Cutts, head of Google’s search spam team, announced that Google would be implementing changes to its search algorithm to punish people who over-optimised their website content.
The announcement was made last week during an SXSW panel in response to a question posed by an attendee. They asked the question whether Google had any plans to combat websites with over-optimised content from being the first in search results.
He stated that the incoming algorithm changes would punish sites that have excessive keyword spamming, links, or anything that goes beyond what you would consider normal optimisation.
How to avoid over-optimisation
Cutts encouraged people to optimise their sites through topics, not keyword spamming. Optimising through topics includes:
- Creating content that is of value to your readers
- Writing your content for people first and foremost
- Being original and offering something new and compelling
- Keywords can of course still be used, but they must be used reasonably
Excessive keyword optimisation is problematic as it focuses on writing for search engines as opposed to people. This leads to pages with a clear spamming of keywords and content that has not been written with the reader in mind.
This approach is something Google discourages and has been constantly evolving its algorithm to account for. Ultimately, good SEO comes down to quality content, not keyword overload.
Another tip was shared by Duane Forrester of search engine Bing. He said to embrace social media, stating that if people share your content on social media sites, then it is much easier for search engines to identify your site as having quality content.
In the end, the rules surrounding SEO haven’t changed. It’s still about quality content, social media, and even keywords. You just have to make sure that you’re not spamming keywords or over-optimising your website.
Always remember it’s about the quality and writing for your readers first. If you have any more questions, contact us or share them in the comments below.