Search Engine Optimization is still for many companies and individuals just a set of “marketing tricks” to make the search engines, namely, Google, display your own websites in favor when your potential customers search for a problem and your company is being shown the most likely solution.
And there were many shady strategies in the past companies did use to outrank the competition and to get more visibility, but none of them are working anymore. And they never worked for a long time, because quite frankly: marketing tricks never work for long.
You can’t trick customers into buying things they don’t need or like. When it comes down to promoting language schools it is like with restaurants. In the long run, you will get so many bad reviews, that you would have to shut down your business if you do not improve the quality of your services being offered.
And therefore no kind of Internet marketing tricks will help you to repair any reputation damage being done.
A very popular SEO strategy in the past was trying to “push down” bad reviews in the search engines and add just enough of your own content on top of search engines so that the damaging reviews would only show up pages later on Google and hopefully nobody would look at them.
Search engines can’t be tricked like that anymore.
So here are some of the bad “dirty SEO secrets” companies did in the past that you don’t want to use:
1. Repeating Content
It was the quickest way to be noticed in search engines if you just kept repeating the same keywords over and over again. If you do that today your website will get de-indexed and removed from search engine results faster than you think.
Repeating content also means that you can’t just copy and
paste your own content on several pages on your own website, as this “duplication content” provides no real value.
While you might want to create different so-called landing pages with a specific focus on ONE keyword or ONE specific content, your website should not contain redundant or multiple attempts to “rank in the search engines” by just adding the very same content over and over again.
2. Re-Used Content Without Adding Any Value
People used and still use to search for websites and content that rank very well in the search engines and then just copy and paste the same content on their site.
Sometimes people rewrite a little and then hoping that their website will rank as high as the other original website.
Beside that stealing content from other sites is usually copyright and content fraud and punishable by most international laws it is also silly because the search engines know who is the original author and who did post the content first.
The only alternative is to do “review-style” content, where you indeed link to popular content on other websites, but add quite some length of your original content – your unique opinion, review or comment on the original piece.
Paying other companies to do “Negative SEO”: some companies are known for offering “Black-Hat SEO” services, where they will link from so-called bad-neighbor-hood domains like porn or gambling sites to the competition so that THEIR rankings will suffer as a result.
This is not only just plain stupid if someone finds out about that, but is also a waste of money and energy. Google webmaster tools allow any owner of domains to disconnect and refuse incoming links from “bad neighborhood domains”, whether they are linked to you by accident or with malicious intent.
Here is what good SEO means in 2018 and beyond.
Search engines have so many ranking factors which most of them are not even known publicly known, not even to SEO experts. But there is a really true “short-cut” in ranking highly in search engines and it is called: high-quality information and unique content.
Strategy 1: Use uniquely written content
There is no replacement in having unique and recognizable content. Your company must take ownership and not rely on outsourced cheap “content providers” – you need to pay for quality personally written and designed content in order to stand out.
Strategy 2: Have notable and actionable content
Your content needs to be so exciting and relevant that your potential customers want to share it naturally with other peers and their networks. Social media only works if you are able to match the voice of your potential language students. This is the same as strategy 1: you can not afford to post and publish generic and boring text that is written by amateurs.
Strategy 3: Network and link with other high-quality sites and experts and grow the trust with search engines and customers alike
Linking from and to other websites is an important strategy to raise the awareness for your website, but it is a very slow and very time-intense strategy that works only over months, months and years to come. It should not be ignored though.
The good thing is if you follow the advice of strategy 1 and 2 then it is almost natural that other companies and individuals want to network and link with your site.
The key here is obviously to create and post content that people want to share from non-competing relevant language websites.