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    Content is No Longer King - Results of a Two Year Study


    So many SEOs have stood firm by the 'content is king' slogan. It is believed that relevant and unique content will benefit your in the search engines.

    Truth is, great, relevant, useful, free content in itself does little to help your web site rank higher. Google SAYS they love unique content that's updated every day, and I know this is true (i.e. crawl rate may increase), but this action IN ITSELF does not yield higher rankings especially in competitive markets.

    Case in point: I have a web site that for 2.5 years I've been adding content, some unique, come changed from news releases etc. I have NEVER bought a link, done some limited article and directory submissions. A competitor who is a thin affiliate for one company, never updates the content, has a dead forum, etc. Ranks substantially higher for keywords (in fact, very well for some great keywords).

    Why is this? The content is NO GOOD! Fact is GOOGLE WILL ONLY REWARD CONTENT WHEN LINKS ARE POINTING TO IT.

    All things being equal, two web site with zero links, but one has better content, better content will rank higher.

    Two web sites:

    [A] has MORE links (inclduing OFF topic but HIGH PR links) but ZERO quality content.

    [B] does not have OFF topic high PR links but GREAT and substantially more content.

    Results? [A] WILL rank higher.

    It appears LINKS and not content is king these days. Yes, Google is getting better at judging content, but the best way to judge relevance is to see how many links are pointing in.

    Response? JOIN THEM! But in a different way. CONTENT MUST HAVE the RIGHT PROMOTION. You can't have content sitting ideally and quietly on your web site no matter how good it is. Content must be promoted, and GOogle EXPECTS that great content will be promoted to the point it will yield favorable incoming links.

    JOIN THEM! But not really.....

    All things being equal site [B] mentioned above can ONLY exceed the competitor [A] if he gets QUALITY links, but high PR as well. Don't underestimate the power of quality one way links... I really wouldn't opt for CRAPPY one way links since your goal is to EXCEED not EQUAL your competition.

    Promote your content because Content[with many links] remains king.

    More info and results posted in my blog
    Last edited by distinctseo; Feb 18th, 2007 at 10:45 PM.
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    Good article! Good content! Linking to it now!
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    I'm not sure you are talking about page rank or SERPs.

    For SERPs, contents is alway the KING.
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    djstreet... it is only logical. If you claim to have the best product in the world but nobody has ever seen it, heard of it, or used it... guess what? You are not going to get many buyers.

    Google SERP rankings require backlinks... that is plain and simple. The difference is that, with backlinks, Google will then look for relevance to the search query. No backlinks... your likely not even indexed never mind ranked in the SERPs.
    ...Never mistake activity for achievement...

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    Originally Posted by SEO_AM
    Google SERP rankings require backlinks... that is plain and simple. The difference is that, with backlinks, Google will then look for relevance to the search query. No backlinks... your likely not even indexed never mind ranked in the SERPs.
    Well...are you really sure about that? In my most humble opinion, it all depends on competitiveness. I have a few sites that need serious backlinking work. They enjoy top SERP position in Google for their various keywords/phrases within a month without backlinking. Keeping them there, now that is another question.

    For example:
    Check out the backlinks to wearingyourlogo(dot)com
    Search google for "screenprinting genesee county"

    No backlinks at all and has been at the top of Google for over four months.

    By the way, the site is enemic because the owner has switched business emphases.
    Last edited by evmikna; Feb 15th, 2007 at 04:39 PM.
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    okay, pls don't flame - just learning here...


    What I did to help promote my site was purchase the .net to accompany my .com and gave out hundreds of free webmail accounts... This not only brought return users to my site, but everyone who received an e-mail from these users were shown my brand. Also, every time the user posts on any bulletin board and they use my free e-mail address they are promoting my site. Would that be considered backlinking? Please bear with me, I'm still learning.

    Thanks,
    CF
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    Originally Posted by kimlancer
    I'm not sure you are talking about page rank or SERPs.

    For SERPs, contents is alway the KING.
    I don't think so, I was saying this IS NOT the case, for SERPS, LINKS are king, then all things being equal, content weighs in.

    Thanks for the link evmika..... wasn't my primary goal or was it :@
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    Originally Posted by SEO_AM
    Google SERP rankings require backlinks... that is plain and simple. The difference is that, with backlinks, Google will then look for relevance to the search query. No backlinks... your likely not even indexed never mind ranked in the SERPs.
    What I'm saying is that Google may look at the relevance, but it seems as though primary criteria for ranking includes high PR links regardless of relevance to receiving web site. Obviously you need to promote, but content is king? I dunno anymore! (of course it is, but man alive, you gotta complement with some good links (or crappy ones) to survive.)
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    Originally Posted by evmikna
    No backlinks at all and has been at the top of Google for over four months.
    Backlinks have to include your internal linking strucure and the trust of the site. I have an authority site that has zero external backlinks on some 100 pages, but those pages still score in the top 5 in the SERPs. It is still a combined power of content, trust and links; both internal and external.
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    There is absolutely no internal linking structure on that site. It is a one-page site with no other pages. Think of it as a business card.

    In fact, I have done virtually no work on the site because the owner is not ready to develop it. I just simply optimized it (title and content) and threw their logo on it.

    If you saw the site, it was ready to receive more pages, but I left the future link text there.
    Last edited by evmikna; Feb 15th, 2007 at 06:27 PM.
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    1. All things are not equal

    2. How many people say "I have great content all my competitors' content sucks"! [you're bias to your own stuff]

    3. Think wikipedia for "CONTENT" and you'll understand "CONTENT IS KING"... your piddlely-a.ss content wrapped around your commercial interests "is not equal"... and thinking lesser content is better than other lesser content is merely splitting hairs.

    4. In the war of content versus links it is obviously that links win but you don't get any links for crap other than those you can swindle for some other reason e.g. cash, trade, partnership or own yourself...

    One of the most difficult things anyone can do is look at things is reverse... "I SUCK" and everyone deserves ranks more than I "BECUASE" [we always say my stuff is so much better... with hundreds of hours of sweat equity involved in creating our stuff and 3 minutes review in everyone else... no bloody wonder we're bias.

    Be that as it may the theory isn't wrong "CONTENT IS KING" your understanding of the cliche is what's wrong with that picture... noting "links" reside on a page, and on each page - they are content too... and the major difference in optimization today over a year ago...

    If you target specifically... you lose... because "CONTENT" isn't just "a bunch of keywords".

    You can rank faster in Google today than ever before just by knowing 'what content is and what it isn't'.
    Last edited by fathom; Feb 15th, 2007 at 06:40 PM.
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    Originally Posted by evmikna
    For example:
    Check out the backlinks to wearingyourlogo(dot)com
    Search google for "screenprinting genesee county"

    No backlinks at all and has been at the top of Google for over four months.
    This is actually funny now that I have looked into a bit.

    Do a Google search using the quotes: "screenprinting genesee county"

    Your one page site is the only page in the Google index with that phrase. You are right when you have ZERO competition you will always come in first place.

    I can do the same thing on phrases where there is ZERO competiion. Give me a break!
    Last edited by SEO_AM; Feb 15th, 2007 at 07:38 PM.
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    Yep! Just making a point. You overstated the point by stating that "Google SERP rankings require backlinks... that is plain and simple...No backlinks... your likely not even indexed never mind ranked in the SERPs."

    It's all about competition whether you need backlinks!
    Last edited by evmikna; Feb 15th, 2007 at 08:50 PM.
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    Originally Posted by evmikna
    It's all about competition whether you need backlinks!
    Correct... but normally when there is no competition there is no market. When there is no market there are no sales. When there are no sales there is no profit. When there is no profit... one wonders why the are in a market that has no competition.

    Bottomline: If you are going to compete, the number, quality, and breadth of your backlinks become more and more important.
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    Or, as in the case of this screenprinter, he has no local competitiors who have websites that enjoy visibility on the search engines.

    Although, his main competitor in town just asked me to do his website!

    Comments on this post

    • EGOL agrees : posting that here could bring competition from all parts of the world.
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