“Less than 5% of all businesses on the Internet use professional SEO services,
however of those who use Professional SEO services, they garner 87% of all
clicks on the Internet.”
SEO 2016 is dedicated to:
This Tricks is dedicated to the SEO’s, the content writers and the webmasters who
spend countless hours in the pursuit of the perfect search engine placement. And
specifically to those who are willing to share knowledge with their peers.
And there are too many to name, but to all of those who nurtured my knowledge
and have helped me become one of the best Search Engine Optimization experts
in the world.
In early 1999, I was elected president of the Sacramento Cisco Users Group just shortly after I wrote my third Cisco Certification book. The users group was dedicated to getting its members certifications, access to training on routers, switches, and using hardware to give better quality of service (QoS) to the local networks and web servers.
Just a year later the users group had over 1,000 members and people would arrive from the Bay Area which was a two hour drive to attend the meetings. If you have been in the computer industry for any length of time I am sure you can remember the Y2K issue and after the fear subsided many IT experts were looking for other careers. Many were focused on creating web servers and using Cisco devices to make the high traffic websites accessible across multiple servers. This kept the user’s web experiences fast and friendly but also eliminated a point of failure. If one of the web servers failed another one was there to keep the website up.
Yahoo! AltaVista, and AOL were the primary search engines at the time. As members in the group started to learn HTML and creating websites they started to ask what, “How do we do so well with the search engines?” One of the early speakers at the group was Mike Monahan from Excite, then later Lycos. He was responsible for creating algorithms and keeping SPAM off the first few pages of the search results.
It pretty easy to tank back then. Add some good Meta tags and put the words on the page which you wanted to be found for. Back then it was really that simple to optimize your website. There was a second part and that was to submit your website to all the search engines one by one manually by using their submission URL’s to submit your website over and over until each search engine started looking at your website.
In the year 2000, I was also teaching Cisco and Microsoft certification classes in Plano, Texas. The topic we were discussing was brought up about a group I represented in the Sacramento area whose main goal was to market to the search engines. Questions were asked by the attendees on what we did and the different topics we addressed. One of the members of the group was Ted Nugent, who at the time was an editor for the quite popular PC Computing magazine.
A few weeks after the class was over I received a call from Ted about wanting me to write an article which explained what was needed to be done in HTML to get your website to be found by the search engines especially Yahoo! and Excite which were the most popular at the time.
That article was published in November of 2000 and was titled “Optimizing Your Website for Search Engines”. Soon that article was copied, rewritten and posted all over the world. More people have made minor changes to that article and called it theirs than I think any other article ever posted on the Internet. Today most every book and text on Internet history credits me with starting the term Search Engine Optimization (SEO) which was first used in that article. Had I only known how popular it would become at the time and I had the forethought to get the domain name “SEO.COM”.
In the year 2001 I started doing SEO for my first client’s websites and every year since I have written a book to update my friends and colleagues on search engine optimization. Since 2001 there has never been a year where there have not been more changes to how you need to optimize your website than the previous year. This year I think was the most challenging and has the most number of changes. Not only that I have some insight in to what changes will be coming in 2017.
SEO now encompasses not just what is on your pages but what you do off-page for your website (on the Internet). This has changed so much in just the past year as well. This includes social media, link building, and what you need to do to make your website look as though or become an authority in your industry has changed so much as well.
NOTE: Link building has not gone away regardless of what Google has said or
stated publically and I can prove it. I will speak more about that later in this
The biggest changes and what’s new for 2016? Well this year it will beimpossible to do SEO without a mobile website. You need to think of Google as morethan one search engine because mobile devices now have their own search results.
Second biggest? Well I might have some who think the new Artificial Intelligence Algorithm called RankBrain should have been first. RankBrain appears to be a product ofa 2014 acquisition by Google of a company called DeepMind. I will cover this newalgorithm extensively in the first chapter.
Third biggest? Well it is a combination of Google Author, Rich Snippets,Semantic Markup, Data Highlighting and great content. If you have never heard of theseterms you better get used to them because they are not so new and they are here to stayand you won’t rank very well this year without them.
This last year has been a never ending battle for ranking position and this battlebelieve it or not is getting hotter for 2016. Google is both a friend and a foe for businessesusing the Internet to market their products or services. To compete, businesses mustutilize SEO or die for the most part. Especially since many who were doing SEO havegiven up and just gone to Pay-Per-Click (PPC). This avenue though is based on anauction system and made so the highest positions in PPC go to those willing to pay themost. It is getting more and more expensive. The more players there are the worse it gets.
The cost per click is raising faster than the cost of raw materials and eating moreand more in to a company’s profits. The cost for one click for the word “Microsoft”? Itjust reached $45. Local searches for the keyword “DUI Attorney” have gone past $20.00a click in some markets.
I have seen so many businesses this past year that relied on PPC instead of SEOtake a fall and go out of business. I have also seen businesses who were doing PPC andconcentrated money on their SEO have a windfall. You always want to do PPC butconcentrate more of your money on SEO as it garners better results for the cost overtime. People click on organic results 8 times more than PPC. Why do they click onorganic results? Because they usually get more relevant information. Anyone can put anad out on Pay-Per-Click if they are willing to pay for it.