Say goodbye to SEO as you know it, latent semantic indexing explained
The formula for prosperous SEO has remained the same for a while now; keyword density, proper page mark up, proper content mark up and high quality backlinks. A lot of people are paid a lot of money to become experts at these concepts, but SEO is looking to change a little...
Latent semantic indexing might be here already
LSI is a different mechanism to the conventional keyword density one we're used to. SEOBook referred to LSI:
Latent semantic indexing allows a search engine to determine what a page is about outside of specifically matching search query text.
LSI considers documents that have many words in common to be semantically close, and ones with few words in common to be semantically distant. This simple method correlates surprisingly well with how a human being, looking at content, might classify a document collection.
Right so what does that really mean?
LSI will rate you higher for using higher level language and a variety of keywords. To rank highly you don't need (or even want) to stuff your content with expected search terms; ideally you should use a larger set of synonyms.
So how does this affect my content?
Right so right now you're trying to rank highly for "Search engine optimisation". The current mechanism would reward you for stuffing your content with that keyphrase because the relvancy of your page would increase (because users searching for that term will find 15 instances of it).
LSI is going to pull your content in the opposite direction. To rank highly for "search engine optimisation" you'll be better placed using suitable synonyms like "search engine marketing", "search engine ranking" etc. This completely detracts from the current way of doing things.
Give it a go!
Some clever chaps at shcl.co.uk have worked out how to demonstrate a basic form of LSI at work on Google. Using the link below you'll be able to see how Google ranks a search for "greeting cards" using only synonyms:
Ultimately it could mean you're paying SEO analysts for no reason
That's the horrifying thing that springs to my mind. If you're paying for analysts to keywordify (new word I've just made up) your content to rank better it might be folly. Sure it might be working now but Google have just been fiddling with their algorithms again so how long before your keyword-rich pages stop being so profitable?
While the validity of the claim of "SEO is dying" is questionable there is an element of truth to it. SEO as you know it might be changing rather than dying. If you're still interested read a more in depth explanation of LSI over at searchnewz.com. No need to panic though, good content will win overall - just make sure you have some.
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