One problem with algorithm changes is that they create a mistrust of what Google’s doing. The search optimisation community throws paraffin on this flame, spreading fear that your website is ‘all wrong’ and ‘needs fixing’. By which, they mean expensive fixing, preferably on a monthly retainer.

Google is not trying to wrong-foot website owners. Google is not trying to disadvantage website owners. If it’s trying to wrong-foot or disadvantage anyone, it is the search optimisation industry – which has website owners chasing their own tail, leaping from change to change, trying to do the impossible: outstep Google.

If you take a quick read of Google’s own webmaster blog, the company will tell you very clearly what you should be doing.

Google talks about creating content that is written by an authority or expert, rather than being superficial and uninformed; having content that is original and not copied; having content that is unique and isn’t repetitive; having content which is free from errors (spelling, facts and style); providing information that is of value to website visitors rather than trying to guess what works well in search engines… and so on.

Although Google offers a lot of advice, it seldom strays from one core premise: the quality of the content. And you know what? Google has been entirely and completely consistent in its advice since, well, pretty much always.

Google is telling us all, loud and clear, that algorithms count for nothing. Nothing.

They are internal changes which Google makes to keep itself at the top of its game. They are not – ever – designed to make you change what you are doing unless what you are doing is focusing on something other than content.

It’s for this reason that Google wrong-foots the search optimisation community. This is an entire industry that is almost wholly focused on trying to rig the game, rather than play by the rules. Well, when it comes to gambling, there is only ever one rule: the house wins.

A lot of search optimisation-generated content is dire. It’s not a sector known for employing talented writers and other content-creators. A lot of it is repurposed. So, not unique, not well-written and far from authoritative. Copying and pasting stuff from other websites – for example – is just one of the tactics that Google blows out of the water.

The best way to get consistent results that don’t fall foul of Google’s changes is to do as Google says: create great, unique content; content that’s well-written; content that changes; content that people want. As a website owner, that’s your job. Let Google worry about the algorithms.


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