Sometimes when you are slogging away at this thing they call SEO you can get disheartened when all your hard, ethical work takes a long time to produce results and you still see unethical techniques reaping rewards. Yes I know those rewards won’t be long lived and risk damaging a company’s reputation, and I know from experience that an Ethical Approach to SEO Really Works but, you know, sometimes you just want to see some really great result just to remind yourself that it’s all worthwhile. And to be able to talk to clients about the long-term benefits of ethical SEO as a true believer.
Well, today was one of those days for me – one when I know why I’m in this business and what I enjoy about it.
I have a client who has struggled to achieve SEO success with past agencies and consultants for whom I have been working for a few months and now we’re seeing good, if not fantastic, results – bear with me, that’s obviously not the interesting part…
This particular client happened to have a whole range of satellite sites for various niche offshoots to their main business that were sitting around unchanged since the day they were created and with links from those sites to the main business site with no value at all because the satellite sites had no page authority/rank.
So, naturally I saw the satellite sites as a great opportunity to add value to the main site by building up their content and hence gaining some page authority. So the home page is now changed regularly and I have started blogs for those sites. Sadly I’m not Superwoman so I only targeted 3 of the sites. Because the aim of this process was to increase the value of existing links and hence the organic ranking of the main site I was only cursorily monitoring what was happening to the satellite sites but now one of them, having never ranked before in the organic listings, is appearing half way down page 2.
Now I also know from experience that sites often seem to appear from nowhere to quite reasonable rankings and then can spend some time behaving erratically until the rankings settle down but, remember, this particular site is not even being specifically targeted with SEO – it has less than 10 links – none particularly high quality and poor on-site SEO. What it does have is good site structure, a keyword-based domain name and has been established for well over a year. Even so, it didn’t rank at all until, most importantly of all, lots of good, fresh content was added regularly.
This particular site is a great example of the power of fresh, regular content alone and rarely have I had the opportunity to monitor a site’s ranking without some active SEO taking place. This sites is offering users exactly what Google wants a site to offer –a good experience with plenty of useful, new content – and is being rewarded for it. Now I want to see what a few links will do for this non-SEO’d site.
Has anyone else had a similar experience of a site ranking well with no optimisation? By the way, since I expect someone will ask, it is ranking for a moderately competitive two-word keyword.