So as we have already mentioned in Google “Penguin” update shouldn’t be worrying, it should make you listen to your SEO Experts! 7 things you can do if you were if you were nailed by the Penguin (the most obvious was that it is likely that you were trying to scam some good ranking out of some “black-hat” methods, or weren’t listening to your all knowledgeable SEO expert to begin with). But we thought we would help you out even more by giving you 10 more simple things you can do to help recover from the Penguin update.
- Don’t Panic!!! – First and foremost don’t panic. Most of Google still works the same way, if someone is looking for you they will of course find you. Maybe not for the all of the words you were looking to rank number 1 on but still for some of them (at least your company name).
- See it as an opportunity – Take your penalty as what it is meant to be, a smack in the face that something needs to change. See this as your opportunity to truly create an SEO, SEM, and social media strategy. They don’t have to be complex, just a set of simple rules you will follow, but write it down and stick to it. Trust us it will turn around your rankings
- Remember “An investment in knowledge always pays the best interest” – Ben Franklin was right when he said that. Learn about SEO, do some research! Knowing more will help you manage your site, or your SEO desires even more than an SEO expert will (if nothing less it makes your decision of who to use a little easier
- Write Better Content – Writing good content is a skill, some might say, but to me it is much easier than people make it out to be. Think of it this way… try telling your story to a 5th grader (or wife /mother in my case). If reading your content to them doesn’t make sense, no one else will read it either. Try making it fun, put personal experiences into it, think about it like a little bit longer of a Facebook post. You are writing to attract people, that aren’t as knowledgeable as yourself so write for them.
- Stop your old / bad practices – This might seem a little obvious, but if you know what you were doing was wrong… stop doing it. If you were penalized for poor link quality, remove the links, and stop making more. If you were penalized for gateway sites, or other things, take them down. The reason Google does this is to make the quality of results better, not to screw with businesses.
- Start having fun again! – Many people tell us that when working with SEO it makes their website “less fun” or “writing blogs is so time consuming and it is boring” So the trick here is to make the activity of doing it fun. Offer promotions to employees to get them to help, have an SEO Party where you take specific pages, and change them as a team, write fun blogs instead of boring ones. If you want to call people crazy do so… trust me people will still come, and likely more will if the content is interesting.
- Embed SEO into everything you do – People for years have embedded navigation best practices to their site. SEO is no different. There is a direct relationship between the SEO of your site, and it’s usage. Remember fewer people navigate directly to a site without going to Google or Bing first. So your navigation is good for once they are there, now the trick is getting them there! Embedded SEO concepts into what you are doing at all stages. Think… if this product is so in demand, how are people looking for it, how do we know it is in demand, and simply use those same points to increase quality of your titles, descriptions, and keywords.
- Ask your customers – The number one thing I see companies doing is forgetting to ask their customers what to improve. It is hard to do in some cases, but there are tricks to make it easier. Ask people that find you, how they did it and what they would do to make it easier. What words did they use to get you on Google, and what words did they try before the found you. Ask people that are customers what things they want to see on your website. Ask people that stop being customers what things they disliked. Trust me, true expertise comes from knowing your customers. Many times SEO experts use tools to help gain that knowledge without directly talking to customers, but this can be a bigger success than you know!
- Reward, reward, reward – Remember in school when you would get a gold star for being good, and (if you were like me) a smack on the wrist for being bad? Same still goes. This is a little more about personal motivation, but give yourself a reward for writing 10 blogs, maybe a new mug, or something small. Trust me positive reinforcement to do the write things as a sight owner will keep you motivated. The more motivation, the more benefits you will see.
- Keep Changing! – Remember the world is changing all the time. New people are looking for you or your products that don’t use the same methods that you used. Think of this… people graduating college this year have never lived in a world without the Simpsons, and have never seen a check book register (it is all online now if you didn’t know). What you do today to reach your customers won’t fly in the future. If you don’t change your habits, communication methods, and strategies, you will loose the new customers coming down the pipeline.
Ok so this might have been a little less about your actual site then you thought, but remember your site is a reflection of you, and your company. If you are bright and bubbly and the site isn’t then no one will get it. Stay motivated. In the words of the British Ministry of Information (in 1939) “Keep Calm and Carry On”