Semalt Expert: Google's Search Algorithm Could Be Compelling People To Spam
Every SEO expert, publisher, or content writer knows that link building is one of the vital factors that influence a site's ranking on search engine result pages. SEO definitely requires links, and people who deal with SEO need them too.
But search engines, particularly Google, seem to need links the most and this is causing more harm than good. Google's search algorithms use links as an integral metric for ranking sites. This has made the subject of link building so prominent in various forums. Writers, bloggers, and publishers are always searching for new methods of obtaining links to ensure that their content stands a better chance of reaching their audiences.
Michael Brown, the Customer Success Manager of Semalt, explains that the weight given to links when ranking sites seems to push other more important ranking metrics to the backseat. It's quite evident now that Google's emphasis on quality content, site authority, and influence as the major determinants of a site's ranking are just claims. Its search algorithms almost entirely ignore these aspects in favor of links.
As a result, link builders are tirelessly scouting for links instead of investing efforts in creating quality content that is influential and authoritative.
Consumers suffer the most from this industry flaw. Instead of getting useful content as they'd expect from sites ranked on the first page of search engine results, what they get is vague content that has been manipulated using links just to rank higher.
It's arguable that Google's too much emphasis on links has fueled the development of a perception that much of whatever is available on the web can be manipulated by the creator. It's this mentality that has probably driven more people to spam links in hopes that their content will be ranked higher.
If search engines put less weight on links when developing their search algorithms, every content creator would stick to the basics of organic SEO. They'd be more concerned about designing their sites and creating their content to the best quality so that consumers find what they are looking for on those sites. This would make the consumers trust such sites more. Of course, no one would like to forget about link building. But after taking care of the most fundamental SEO aspects, nothing would be easier than attracting quality links to the site. In other words, the site would be liked because it is likeable.
As it stands now, Google is allowing sites to use links to force people to like them. Sadly, even big sites are doing this unacceptable thing, and one is left to wonder why Google lets them get away with it.
If the problem of spammy links is to find a solution, Google must be at the center of it. It has to stop giving links too much weight in its ranking algorithm and focus on the most important factors of online content: uniqueness, usefulness, influence, and authority. Search engines have to make the playing ground level – allowing sites to compete based on the quality of their content and how well they take care of consumers' needs. Unless this happens, more people will develop the perception that links are the king of SERP ranking and that would only increase the amount of useless content on the web, as already witnessed.