Google has the habit of changing the rules of the game quite often. The SEO community was shaken twice in 2012. Google Panda and Google Penguin killed a number of optimisation techniques that used to deliver amazing results in the past.

Did you suddenly see a decrease in your website’s ranking and poor search engine placement? The problems could have been caused by the usage of the wrong SEO techniques. Optimisation is one of the most important forms of inbound marketing and doing it properly will ensure the popularity of your online project.

Here is a list of the SEO techniques that you need to immediately stop using.

The end of link building?

Link building was almost killed in 2012. Many SEO experts said that social networking has become the new form of link building and reputation establishment. High quality links can still be obtained in natural ways or through guest posting. Paid or reciprocal links, however, will only decrease the efficiency of your SEO efforts.

The problem is that paid links are quite frequently low quality, irrelevant links. In the world of SEO, quality matters much more than quantity does. Instead of carrying out a hectic link building campaign, focus on partnerships with several reputable websites that function inside your niche.

Content duplication and keyword stuffing

Please, please, please stop writing for search engines! Google Penguin and Panda both stressed the importance of high quality text written for the audience of your website. Writing for the reader will actually please the search engine, as well.

Content duplication has become the biggest sin of SEO. It will impede your inbound marketing efforts and it may even get your website penalized. The same applies to keyword stuffing and the reliance on high keyword densities.

For SEO and marketing success, you will have to come up with a content plan. Write useful, informative and unique pieces. Getting people to spend more time exploring your website will also affect your optimisation efforts.

Trying to attract a general audience

Proper keyword selection has always been difficult to achieve but now that Google has started paying more attention to the experience of the audience, the task has become even more challenging. Panda and Penguin favour niche websites and specialisation will be the key to success in 2013.

Refrain from targeting broad and general keywords in your strategy. True, such phrases will help you reach a larger audience and they will drive traffic to your website but engines are no longer of approving such approaches.

Stick to the specific keywords. Start by drafting a content list and choose the keywords that relate to your niche. Having a small, targeted and loyal audience will be much better for your SEO performance in 2013.

Excessive reliance on text SEO

Stop focusing on text exclusively. Multimedia content is becoming more and more important. Your content strategy and SEO attempts should take the new development in consideration.

Are you still working on SEO texts for your websites? How about videos and pictures? The simplest way of doing multimedia SEO involves the inclusion of a transcription of the video, the selection of the right description and title. You will be surprised by the tremendous resource you are missing by failing to optimise multimedia.

Content is the king but web content today has many faces. Diversify your SEO efforts to achieve the best results.

SEO or content management strategy?

Simply doing SEO will no longer do the trick. Instead, you should be thinking about a content strategy.

Content management is an extensive approach that focuses on high quality articles, establishing a relationship with your audience and doing inbound marketing through social networks. All of these elements will be determining for successful marketing and they will affect SEO, as well.

To be successful in 2013, you will have to go through a change of mind. Traditional SEO is no longer the simple set of strategies that you used to rely on in the past. Take your time to come up with a content plan and to figure out how to please your audience. Accomplishing these goals will favour your SEO efforts, as well.

Now it’s your turn

Did your SEO results suffer in 2012?  What tactics do you see not working anymore? We would love to know in the comments below.

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