Search engines have become more sophisticated these days and are more concerned about content. They want to make user experience more pleasant by only showing the most relevant results. Search engines, Google in particular, want to do away with spam and unnecessary content and that is why it is constantly upgrading and changing its algorithms. If you do not want your site to be included in the list of casualties, it would be in your best interest to find out what you should avoid.
Content is king and a site with shallow content could be setting itself up for penalties. There have been too many complaints about poor search results and in order to make things better, Google has released the Panda update last February 2011. It is an update which targets thin or shallow content. This is focused on sites with content which is not well-researched and well-written. Nowadays, there is focus not only on the relevance on the content but its usefulness on the user too.
As a user how many times have you clicked on a search result only to find out that the website has nothing but ads in it? Disappointing isn’t it? The Page Layout Algorithm is meant to address this problem. According to Google’s Matt Cutts, many users have complained about clicking on a search result only to find the content hard to locate. Placing an overabundance of ads before your content is something which you must definitely avoid.
Some sites have too much keywords that it is not good to read or look at anymore. So, some people resort to hiding the text by cloaking it with the rest of the background by making the text white. Make no mistake about this. This is considered spamming. Search engines do not want surprises, especially the unpleasant ones. They want to see whatever the user sees. So, never hide anything if you do not want to be penalized.
Too much keywords
Too much is always a bad thing and this is especially true when we are talking about keywords. Overstuffing a page with keywords is one of the oldest tricks of spammers and one of the most notorious one too. So, how often should you use your keywords? There is really no correct answer but as a rule, your keywords should not exceed 10%.
Aside from hiding keywords from lain view, there is another trick used by sites to rig search engines and it is called cloaking. With cloaking you will get a very heavy penalty because it is a deliberate act of fooling a search engine. So, do not even think about doing it.
Buying links is not only frowned upon. You could get yourself penalized for doing it. Although there is still debate as to how Google should react to paid links, the bottom line is there is a need to follow their rules and their rules say that you should never purchase or sell links.