Zero Parallel

Old SEO vs. New SEO

There was a time when the internet landscape was smooth and easier to navigate than ever. We’re talking about when legitimate search engines would encourage keyword stuffing and spammy backlinks for higher SEO rankings. Those days are long gone.

Google has denounced both of those practices as non-compliant and has even penalized numerous websites for trying to pull off these old tricks. It’s no surprise that there’s been a paradigm shift in the way Google and other major search engines design their complex algorithms. The new Penguin 4.0 is much more focused on the intent, motivation, and authenticity of the website rather than its quantity of backlinks and keywords. In this article, we’ll compare the “old SEO” and the new algorithmic mindset to help you focus on what matters most in SEO today.

SEO for Lead Generators 1: Rankings vs ROI

A little over a decade ago, SEO was focused almost entirely on rankings rather than engagement levels. Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, and all of these major social media platforms didn’t yet exist, so the average internet-user received all of his or her information solely through web searches. As a result, SEO marketers would focus on singular keywords and page optimizations to get the highest results they can, because that’s where all the web users were gathered.

Although people still search the web to get their information now, search engines aren’t the only places to find leads. The average adult consumer spends around 50 minutes on Facebook each day, while young adults and teens spend as much as 6-9 hours on social media a day. That’s an incredible amount of time, considering that our days are typically only 12 hours long. Compared to the amount of time spent on Google search, which is around 3 hours per day (for all ages combined), we can see that the numbers aren’t so different. Social networks have become ingrained in our daily lives so quickly that the digital marketing landscape no longer looks the way it did just a few years back. It’s not just social media that’s changed, but the new craze that it gave to likes, shares, and comments have leaked into the blogosphere as well, which influences SEO by way of gaining exposure and backlinks.

The new SEO mindset focuses on ROI, or return on investment. We try to get people to engage with the platforms as much as possible; not just find us blindly on the web and click away. Forceful pop-ups and ads result in higher bounce rates, anyway. Gearing your SEO towards generating the most ROI includes:

  • Creating valuable content that people would share
  • Social media marketing
  • Guest posting
  • Making off-page changes based on analytical results

SEO for Lead Generators 2: Quantity vs Intent

What used to elevate quantity now elevates motivation and intent. The old SEO algorithm would allow poorly made websites to rank highly just because of the amount of backlinks and keywords it has. This lenient algorithm gave way to thousands upon thousands of websites that continuously abused these tactics to draw in unsuspecting users.

Once Google realized that allowing illegitimate websites to rank wasn’t going to work, it strapped on its gears and created algorithmic changes that favored the quality of the website, rather than its low-quality content and backlinks. Now, the Penguin 4.0 algorithm favors the amount of authoritative recommendations (quality backlinks) a website receives, its loading speed, engagement levels, keyword-to-content ratio, mobile-friendliness, and other qualities that indicate genuine value and thoughtful intentions. To optimize your SEO in a way that will make your website thrive, try the following strategies:

  • Focus on keyword intent (think in your visitors’ shoes)
  • Use long-tail keywords (key phrases that are very specific to what you’re selling)
  • Focus on conversions, not just getting new visitors
  • User mobile-friendly templates
  • Improve your page loading speed
  • Contribute to authoritative websites for quality backlinks

SEO for Lead Generators 3: Shortcuts vs. Relationships

Lastly, the third major mindset difference between the new and old SEO lies in the ultimate test of authenticity: relationships. Before, the algorithms didn’t require webmasters to nurture their leads as much as now. That resulted in the rise of malicious websites that not only ranked for the wrong reasons but also took dangerous, non-compliant shortcuts that harmed its users.

Now, relationships and leads nurturing are crucial to the development of your website and your conversion rates. To cater to the new SEO mindset, create content that provides real value to your readers. Don’t just write to have more pages or to stuff more keywords into your website. Focus your efforts on maintaining the audience’s interest. Here are a few surefire ways to keep your audience exploring your website for as long as possible:

  • Create an internal link structure that provides value to your readers
  • Use email drip campaigns
  • Choose engaging images
  • Create irresistible headlines

We would love to give you more tips and SEO strategies, so sign up to be a Zero Parallel Affiliate and generate leads with us!

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