SEO

Socializing at the Speed of Google

Google makes socializing on the web faster than ever.
Google makes socializing on the web faster than ever.

The only thing constant about search engine optimization is change. You must adapt if you want to stay on top. Social, news and bookmarking sites and services have changed the game. If you’re still living in 1998 as far as your SEO, get over it. Adapt or you’ll find yourself disappearing from the search results.

In the good old days, Seinfeld was still new in prime time and getting high rankings in the search engines involved tweaking the title and meta tags on your web pages and joining link farms to get thousands of backlinks. You’d submit your site or page, sit back, wait and do some more tweaking in a few days or weeks after the spiders had crawled and indexed.

This is 2008 and things have definitely changed.

Spidering is almost immediate in Google these days. Posts to your blog or web site can show up in a few hours. In 1998, few had heard of blogging and hardly anyone was doing it. Now, the combination of a quality blog and Google’s high speed indexing can be a potent combination for good rankings.

If you don’t have a blog, get one now. You’re missing out on an opportunity to contribute great content to the web as well as gain quality links and reputation, which lead to good rankings.

There’s more to getting good rankings than just posting to your blog, however. You’ve got to leverage social media and bookmarking to really be effective. This means joining social networking sites like StumbleUpon, Digg, Reddit and so forth (See my post S E O 101 – Social Media Optimization).

Once you’ve registered with the various social bookmarking sites, you need to get the word out about your blog posts. It would help to have social network friends to help you with submitting your posts to the different properties. Doing it yourself is generally considered poor taste.

In addition, Michael Campbell over at Internet Marketing Secrets suggests this recipe for success:

1. Post to your blog. Be sure your post title is targeted to your keyword phrase.
2. Submit an excerpt from the post to sites like Digg and Propeller.
3. Bookmark the excerpt pages on Reddit, Stumbleupon and del.icio.us
4. Ping the bookmark RSS feeds using a service like Pingomatic.

Be sure your excerpts include your targeted search phrase.

Michael’s strategy basically creates a funnel that drills back down to your original post. When you post to your blog, that designates you as the originator of the content. Submitting excerpts not only gets your content (though in the form of a keyword rich snippet) into the likes of Digg and Propeller for immediate traffic, but those individual excerpt pages can then be bookmarked in StumbleUpon or del.icio.us, where traffic lasts longer (Note that del.icio.us results are being tested in Yahoo serps, another bonus). These bookmark sites generate RSS feeds that you can feed into automated feed updating services. All of these are spread out across the web very quickly due to Google’s high speed indexing and are made available for sharing, resulting in widespread visibility that leads back to your original post.

Again, it would be best to follow these steps from accounts other than your own. If you have a work account or a family or friend’s account that you can use, I’d go that route. Tooting your own horn is just plain inappropriate in the eyes of the social networks. Guess I’m just a stickler for proper social etiquette!

Combine Michael’s suggestion with your regular social networking (getting friends and fans to plug you in the social networks) and you’ve got a pretty powerful one-two punch, circa 2008.

So, ditch the link farms and get your blogging and social networking skills in order. Create good, quality content and share it. Being social is as fast as, well, Google these days!

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