If you’ve been wondering why SEO hasn’t changed that much at all this year, there are several reasons that bear noting. First of all, Google Panda didn’t really cause that much of an issue; it was a mild update in comparison to previous updates and some sites are already recovering from the affect it had on ranking. There has been a loss of relevance for keyword links in your anchor text, so gone are the days when you had to use them when you were creating that text. The goal is to make your content sound more natural and then add in the links wherever they might fit in. You can even use basic referral language now.
There are much fewer SERPS results per domain name on keyword phrases now. Having fewer SERPS per domain name means that a business that was used to having their website ranking multiple times under that repetitive keyword phrase will now only be able to rank up to around four times. This means that the domain name remains just as relevant as it used to, but the amount of rankings is lower. The goal is that Google is aiming on reducing the dominance of some domains in rankings in order to help make room for others, which means SEO should be more productive for most people this year.
Although there’s emphasis on link quality still, there’s less of a focus on link building. Google is trying to downplay the amount of links to ensure that the links that you have listed have meaning and they are providing you with the content that you’re aiming for. The links are important still, but you’re only going to be rewarded for links that are high quality. This makes it more fair because many people used to just spam their content with links everywhere to try to get better SEO results, which isn’t a good practice.
Link Alerts are a new feature that Google has added to make things a little easier for websites. When Google discovers that there are issues with your links, they can alert you through Webmaster Tools and provide some example URLS of why it’s not working. Another feature that has been added in the Webmaster Tools area is that now you can track all of the links that come to and on your own website. This makes it much easier for you to follow up on your Link Alerts.
All in all, it hasn’t been too difficult to adapt to SEO this year because it hasn’t changed that much. Although this is an ideal opportunity for now, SEO can always change more in the future, especially based on Google’s record with their previous updates. However, now is the best time to take advantage of many of the features and concepts mentioned here if you are seeking to bring in more traffic to your content.