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Google's Newest Algorithm + Your Firm's SEO

     -     Nov 15th, 2011   -     Accounting Marketing   -     0 Comments

It should come as no surprise that Google has once again changed its algorithm.  Depending on your personal perspective, this could actually be a good change! The impact this time around will be far greater than the ‘Panda’ change that took place earlier this year.  So, how will this affect your firm?

Google’s most recent change will impact 35% of searches! Searches will now bring back the most recently updated/implemented content as a result.  The key thought being that recent content is more relevant than content written 10 years ago.  This change may be putting your firm’s website at a disadvantage.  More than half of the websites online today are not on content management systems, and this makes changing or updating site content more difficult, which in turn means that content is not being updated or changed.  And therefore will no longer appear at the top (if they once were) of searches because they aren’t seen as new and fresh.

What does this mean?!
It means that most websites are sitting static on the internet, and their content has been indexed thousands of times so their SEO is decent, it’s ‘comfortable’ – to borrow from relationship terminology.  Then along comes Google, who notices that the website has been the same for 5 years, and it decides that the next time a search on ‘401k plan audit providers’ comes up, the firm with a recently updated blog about “401k plan audit providers” will surface.  This is how the newest change can affect your firm.

Key Questions to Ask Yourself

  • When was the last time we did something with our website?
  • Does our firm have a blog?

You may think that a website redesign is far off, after all you did one two years ago.  If that redesign did not include building the site on a content management system, then you should consider having your newly designed site moved to one – read more about CMS at point #8 in this article.  Also if you are using any Flash, consider another redesign – you can read why, here. Content management systems will empower the people at your firm to add new content to your existing website, and this keeps your content in the “fresh and new” section of Google indexing.

Consider a blog.  Blogs don’t have to be about what your cat ate and how high school was a waste of your youth.  Consider a professional blog for your firm, one that will address current issues relevant to your firm’s areas of expertise.  At Flashpoint, we often recommend delegating the workload.  In other words, you don’t need to hire a new person to ‘manage’ your blog, but you do need to have a list of 4 topics a month that you want to blog about, and assign them to different people within your firm.  Another great strategy is to have the people within different departments at your firm write a single blog article about their expertise and publish them a week apart from each other.  Again, this inspires relevant content that is fresh in Google’s eyes and will keep your firm at the top of the results.

The Bottom Line

Keeping all of these things in mind, remember that Google has clearly stated that “different searches have different freshness needs,” so use common sense when addressing specific areas on your website.  Some information about your business will never change, and it doesn’t need to be updated – but it will be important to know how to differentiate.  It never hurts to use a Content Management System, and the improvement will save both time and money in the long run.  In addition, regularly updated content is a must in today’s fast-paced world of information exchange, so if you aren’t doing something already – this Google change might just be the final push you need to convince the partners at your firm that change is a necessary evil.

If you need assistance differentiating what kind of content needs regular updates, or if you regret that your last redesign wasn’t on a CMS – by all means get in touch with me.  I have an office full of resources and I’d be happy to help.  Otherwise, get out of here and go update your website!

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