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There have been a ton of press, blogs and articles written over the past year discussing the demise of Google and SEO as we know it.  Link building almost became a ‘taboo’ topic and selecting ‘keywords’ is quickly being tarnished as forbidden fruit.

But is Olympus falling?  To understand if this is a realistic outcome, you have to go back to the start.  Back to the dawn of Google and understand just how intense the system is.  Rome wasn’t built in a day, and to think that Google itself will wipe out the very fabric of the foundation it was built on is almost comical.  It would make no sense whatsoever, not to mention it would be a costly exercise.  Its system was built on a series of very expensive, intelligent and time consuming code that analyzes each and every website in existence and how it links to the rest of the web.Links aren’t dead and neither is SEO.  Your business model just can’t be subject to constant spam attacks and loopholes trying to cheat the system.  Why shouldn’t Google refine its own system?  Scammers, abusers and crooks were using shady link tactics to make money from their own sites.  Would you allow that to happen?  Of course not. So Google set about refining it’s requirements.  Panda was introduced (named after the programmer who invented it) using a scoring system of hundreds of human beings, tallying up what they loved and hated about a website.  The love was generated into code and inserted into Google’s signals.  The more ‘love’ your website shows based from this research, the more points you win.  Penguin was designed to bring down the link network empires.  As I mentioned, Google’s SERPS is based on ‘how many links you have pointing back to your site’ – so Penguin was introduced to make sure that these links, weren’t just thousands of random or irrelevant links from networks that are spamming the system.  Thus, the more refined trustworthy links you have pointing back to your site, the more likely you are to score higher.

It’s worth bearing in mind that the dominant engine that is Google, uses over 200 signals to decided where you are placed.

In a given day, we can have anything from 10-20 inbound leads asking for a site audit, or to look at their SEO.  One of the common phrases I hear from business owners is ‘So, now that links are dead, what else will you be doing?’   This is where I tell them everything I’ve written above!!  However, my job was just made a little bit easier.  Matt Cutts, the head of Google’s spam department discussed in a recent video, of a world where Google doesn’t rely on links and what the outcome would be.  Take a look by clicking here.  He goes on to discuss that the results were bad and that backlinks are a ‘really really big win for search results’.  This doesn’t mean you can throw any old link at a website, there just needs to be more research involved.

This of course isn’t to say that things will change overtime, but the changes G has put into place now are really helping to refine the system.  They count a lot more on what people are saying socially, what reviews you have, how traffic responds to your site as well as some very detailed technical requirements on page.  SEO isn’t dead, it’s just more refined.   A campaign that drives traffic from numerous sources will be the one that reigns supreme.  Duffy Marketing wants you to know, the more people who know about you, the more popular you’ll become.  In turn, the more business you’ll drive.