Search Engine Optimization

Fred Lebhart Posted by Fred Lebhart on June 23, 2012

What Google's Penguin Update Means for Small Business SEO

What Google's Penguin Update Means for Small Business Website SEO

Protect your small business website from Google's future algorithm updates.

On April 24, 2012, Google launched one of its biggest attacks on web spam, known as the Penguin Update. With this update, Google made it clear that it would not tolerate any form website SEO that isn't 100% ethical and white hat. Small business websites that lost most of their site traffic because of the Penguin Update might bounce back if they fix underlying problems and wait until Google's next update rolls out. But even if your small business website wasn't affected by the Penguin Update, there are several things you can do to stay ahead of the curve.

One problem is that many small businesses rely solely on Google for traffic. It's important to diversify your traffic sources if you want to survive search engine algorithm updates and develop an online marketing strategy that's effective in the long run. There are several different traffic sources that small business websites can take advantage of, including PPC advertising, social media marketing, and email marketing. Do some research to determine what your target audience would respond to, and then start incorporating these different methods into your online marketing strategy!

Focus on the User Experience
Google will continue to punish over-optimized websites and reward those that provide an optimal user experience. Remember: Google's #1 goal is to please its users. So, focus on improving your website's quality instead of employing SEO techniques that are designed to boost your website's rankings. Websites that demonstrate high engagement levels will likely be rewarded in future updates. Metrics that search engines may use to measure user engagement include user reviews, article comments, and social shares. Additionally, when looking at your analytics, take note of bounce rates and the "pages per visit" ratio, which is the average number of page views generated by each visitor. The rankings of websites with high bounce rates will eventually take a hit because Google will assume that they're not answering users' queries adequately. Some things you can do to reduce bounce rates and increase page views per visit include redesigning your website, rewriting content or adding multimedia content, such as videos and infographics. If you're relying on keyword-stuffed content or content that's been copied and pasted from other websites, you'll have to do a complete overhaul of your content strategy because it's no secret that Google rewards high-value content with high rankings. Improving the quality of your website's content and providing valuable content on a regular basis is critical if you want to protect your website from future algorithm changes. You should definitely add a blog to your small business website if you haven't already. Update your blog at least once a week for maximum results.

Give Your Small Business Website an SEO Makeover

efelle designs websites for small businesses and helps them get found online with ethical SEO tactics. If you need help improving your small business website's search engine rankings in the Post-Penguin era, give efelle a call at 206.384.4909 or contact one of our Website SEO Specialists using our online form to set up a free SEO consultation!