What I Learned About Dating Through SEO

Like dating, your SEO strategy is your partner.

You will go through hardship, confusion, ups & downs and frustration. However, stick to it and it is only a matter of time before it starts to give back.

“SEO Is Very Much A Love-Hate Relationship, Treat It Like You Would A Normal Relationship”

That is the point where you look back and realize that the commitment and effort you put in has been well worth it.

Even though you wanted to give up on your SEO partner, you are glad you put in the time and effort to make it work.

questions to ask on a date
Your SEO strategy is very much like your dating strategy

Interestingly enough, it was only recently I starting to date an amazing girl. I never really had much luck in the past, mainly due to being a geek, on my PC day in and day out. But for some reason I decided to go out one night with a friend and had this surge of confidence that I never had in the past… this led me to meeting my currently girlfriend whom I am very happy with it now.

What I did find interesting was that these turn of events happened round about the time I started to crack SEO with impressive results. At first I thought this surge of confidence came because of this new found success, but after breaking it down I have this theory that it was SEO itself that taught me structure and consequently how to behave around women.

Here are x ways that SEO helped me with dating.

  1. Pace Yourself, Quicker Is Definitely Not Better:

    Patience is key. In order for Google to trust you, it will require time to monitor your activity and behaviour… as the saying goes:


    The very same things applies with dating. You cannot go in there and rush matters… trying to find out as much as you can about her in a short period of time is only going to scare her off and make her feel like it is an interrogation… like with SEO, you need to learn the language and now what questions to ask on a date.

  2. Your Wingman:

    If you think you can achieve everything necessary in SEO without any help, then you will surely fail.

    I personally have many people working around me, helping with design, marketing, backlinking, content writing and on-page formatting… like in dating, your wingman is working behind the scenes ensuring your success.

  3. Honesty Is The Safest Policy:

    The newest generations of SEOs tell you that trying to trick Google will no longer work. But this act of manipulation is not just a matter of not succeeding in SEO, but will also result in the ultimate punishment of getting penalized.

    Much like with dating, if you go in being dishonest, it is only a matter of time the truth comes out. Imagine this scenario, where months later you start to take a real shine for this person, only for them to slam the door in your face for your dishonesty… heart breaking, right?

Penguin Update With A Drone Example

It finally happened, after years of waiting we finally received the latest Penguin update from Google. What does this latest Penguin update do?  I’ll attempt to cover it and provide an example using a drone page that I have built up over the years.

Source of Links

Gary Illyes says that it’s more the source of the link than anything else. Specifically, Penguin is looking at the page that the link is located on and asking “What is the purpose of this link?”

If the external link is in the footer, standing alone… then the purpose seems to be ‘passing juice’ which Penguin probably won’t like very much.

If the link is within an article, in the context of a recommendation, then it sounds as if it’s a good link.

Same goes with comments, if the link is in the name of a worpress comment, then it probably won’t pass juice. However, if the link is within the context of a big comment, then it probably will be valuable.

My big big takeaways is: Penguin will ignore links coming from pages with little-to-no text.

A Drone Example

So for instance, if I’m a drone enthusiast and I’m creating a page about drone reviews on Google, then in order for my quadcopter page to receive a valid link, I would want to have a few elements to convey that the link is relevant to content that is on the target page (Things such as mentioning DJI, Phantom, Hubsan and other drone companies).

drone review

Having a cool picture of a drone (notice I named it drone-review.jpg) as well would help provide additional relevance. So all in all, I have 3 elements: The headline, the words around the drone link and the picture.

This SHOULD give it enough relevance for Google to say: “ok, well this is in context and seems natural enough”


Recovery After Google Panda 4 Is Released

It hasn’t been long since Google Panda 4 has been released but already we are seeing quite a few reports of web masters experiencing significant traffic increases. The changes are attributed to the gentler and softer algorithmic thresholds that have been tweaked in Panda 4.

Panda 4 Severity

Original Content
Code Quality
Social Popularity

Live Panda Recoveries

Still to this day, this is the only proof of a full Panda recovery from start to finish. Part of the instructions on how to recover from Panda can be found here.

What is Panda 4?

Panda 4 is the latest algorithm update by Google. It evaluates a site’s quality to increase and decrease its rankings.

How can I check if I'm affected by Panda?

If you have a website then you are affected by Panda. Google has integrated the Panda algorithm into it’s core ranking algorithm which means that every site is evaluated for quality.

What is the fastest way to recover from Panda?

The fastest way to recover from Panda is to follow Eric Lancheres’ step by step Panda recovery guide at Panda Breakthrough.com 

If you can catch him and get a one on one consultation… that’s even better. (But getting an appointment is difficult because he’s so busy.)

Outrank Your Competition on Google In 2013

If there’s one thing that all SEO experts will agree about, it’s that the previous year was quite a turbulent one. Everything from recovery from Panda, to Penguin, to the EMD update, the Top Heavy update (just to name a few…) have contributed to  drastically changing the landscape of SEO. This has caused many to move away from relying on search engine traffic to sustain their business and move onto either social, referral or paid sources of traffic. Yet, some people still rank #1 in Google, and others are people are growing in traffic month after month. Competition be damned, they are taking over the first page of Google.

What on search engine hell could they possibly be doing?

The ones that are succeeding, ironically, are the ones that opted not to listen to all the gloom and doom news updates regarding the search engines. When Matt Cutts said: “This will be an update that will shake the foundation of SEO” (I’m paraphrasing), many shivered in fear. And… in a way, he was right.

The frightened ones stopped building links, stopped optimizing everything on their site and moved towards… well.. paralysis. I even know some people that stopped updating their site because of the updates!

In SEO, you will get what you focus on!

Slowly but surely, they began dropping in rankings. Sure they would try the latest ranking trick (ie: Pinterest is hot, let’s try it for 1 hour! Or even.. posting on blogs still works? Let’s do that!) but quickly gave up after not seeing immediate results.

I’ve been saying this for years… significant ranking changes usually take 1-2 weeks to take effect!

Yes Google is fast… very fast in fact. However, the internet is a giant place and sometimes it takes the Googlebot weeks to crawl your latest high PR link. Even once it re-crawled it, it has to re-evaluate all the links around it. Re-calculating everything takes time and that’s why many impatient SEO’ers tend to give up after a few weeks.

Successful Information Marketers

Instead, the most successful information marketers of have used the updates as an incentive to create higher quality content and to step up their link building process. As soon as they find something that works… even if it’s just a little, they continue to do it constantly. While most people are looking for the magical link that will increase their position by 300+ ranks, they are constantly doing the basics.

“Posting on Google+ helps you say? Great, I’m going to implement that into my toolbox and consistently post about it every time I release a new article.”

“Related back links on related blogs helps? Awesome, I’m going to tell me staff to only concentrate on related sites now.”

Although having Google+ votes might only increase your rankings by a mere 1 or 2 positions, it’s the cumulative effect that matters. With each additional related back link, each related blog post and every new piece of high quality content, their site grows.

Think of ranking on Google like walking on an escalator. Although it’s possible to get a big enough lead that you stay at the top for a year or two… if you stop climbing, you’ll eventually be surpassed.

The trick then becomes to have content that is of such high quality that OTHERS do the climbing for you. (Natural links). Ironically, when you’re in the #1 position, you tend to get more natural back links because others have an easier time finding you. I can’t tell you how many people have recommended my articles… mostly because they were in the first position of Google.

Continuing with the escalator analogy… those that continue to climb with effective techniques will eventually reach the top. It will most likely take 3-6 months and that’s normal. I hate to say it… but that’s how it’s almost ALWAYS been for competitive keywords. Sure you hear about the odd story about how someone achieved first place rankings in under a week… but that’s like hearing stories about people that lose 100 pounds in a few months. The norm is a few positions per week, and it becomes exponentially harder when you get close to first place!

If you can persist for longer than your competition, then you’ll achieve your goals regardless of the year or the state of SEO.

The golden SEO rules still apply:

1. Create great content that your customers read.
2. Build links in places where your customers might be hanging out. (ie: related sites)
3. Repeat

What do you think? Do you agree? Do you have a Google penalty? Do you have an SEO technique that you have been using to outrank your competition? Let me know in the comments, I’d love to hear about your success (and even failures) of the previous year.