Google search engine optimisation and their 80/20 rule
Learn what method of search engine optimisation is really effective when your looking to improve your search engine rankings on Google.
Search engine optimisation or optimization (with a ëzí or is that ëzeeí if your from across ëthe pondí) techniques are constantly evolving. This evolution is in response to the evolution of search engines such as Google, Yahoo and MSN. Google in particular has come to be seen as the most sophisticated and advanced search engine as it is armed with an array of anti-spam technology.
Googleís increasing use of anti-spam features has meant that optimising websites for Google has become much harder and itís now not just a case of opening your websites source files in notepad, adding some keywords into your various HTML tags, uploading your files and waiting for the results. In fact in my opinion and Iím sure others will agree with me, this type of optimisation, commonly referred to as onpage optimisation will only ever be 20% effective at achieving rankings for any keywords which are even mildly competitive. Those of us who aced maths in school will know this leaves us with 80% unaccounted for.
This 80% corresponds to offpage optimization. Offpage optimization is all to do with the amount of links pointing to your site and its pages, the actual linking text (anchor text) of these links and the quality of the pages which the links are on. Offpage optimisation is now for sure the overwhelmingly dominating factor which decides where a site will rank in Google. That then is what I mean by the 80/20 rule, Iím not talking about the pareto rule which means that in anything a few (20 percent) are vital and many (80 percent) are trivial, Iím not sure that applies to SEO.
What is the logic behind this then, why does Google give so much ëweightí (80%) to offpage optimization efforts and so little (20%) to onpage optimisation. Well simply put it is all about the quality of their results. Whereas onpage optimisation is completely controlled by the webmaster and can thus be abused by an unscrupulous one, offpage optimisation is something that is not controlled by anyone as such by rather by other webmasters, websites and indeed the Internet in general. This means that it is much harder to conduct any underhanded or spammy offpage optimisation methods in the hope of gaining an unfair advantage for a website in the Google SERPS (Search Engine Result Pages), this does not mean it is impossible though.
Letís elaborate for a paragraph or two just why offpage elements such as incoming links are deemed by Google to be such a good measure of relevancy, thus making offpage optimisation the most effective method of optimisation by far. Take the anchor text of incoming links for instance, if Google sees a link from SITE A to SITE B with the actual linking text being the words ëdata recovery londoní, then SITE B has just become more relavent and thus more likely to appear higher in the rankings when someone searches for ëdata recovery londoní. SITE B has no control over SITE A (in most casesÖ) and Google knows this. Google can then look at the link text and say to itself, why would SITE A link to SITE B with the specific words ëdata recovery londoní if SITE B wasnít ëaboutí ëdata recovery londoní, there is no answer so Google must deem SITE B to be ëaboutí ëdata recovery londoní.
I said ëin most casesí above because often webmasters have multiple sites and would crosslink them with keyword rich anchor text, but there is only so many sites and crosslinks any webmaster can manage, again Google knows this and so as the number of backlinks and occurrences of keyword rich anchor text grows (and with that grows the unlikelihood of anything unnatural like crosslinking going on) so to does the relevancy of the site which all the backlinks point to. Imagine hundreds or thousands of sites all linking to a website X with variations of ëdata recovery londoní type phrases as the linking text, well then Google can be pretty dam sure that website X is ëaboutí ëdata recovery londoní and feel confident about returning it in the top 10 results. This is why they place so much importance (80%) on offpage ranking factors such as links; they are simply the most reliable way of checking what a site is about and indeed how well it covers what it is about. This reliance on hard to cheat offpage factors is what produces the quality search results we all know, love and use everyday.
The moral of the story from an SEO point of view then is to spend less time on those little website tweaks which you think might make a big difference (but wonít) and work hard on what really counts, what really counts is how the web íseesí your website, the more quality (keyword rich) incoming links your website has the better the webs ëviewí will be and therefore the better Googleís view of your website will be. What Google thinks of your website is very important, as they ëlook afterí websites which they like.