The most recent Google results, whether involving incoming links, Google PageRank levels, or positions in the search engine results pages (SERPs), include one common denominator. That similarity lies in the value that Google is placing on theme and topic related content. The watchword of the day, in the land of Google, is relevance.
The Google algorithm, which is the mathematical calculation that determines a site’s position in the search results for any given keyword or phrase, has been revised to stress the importance of relevance. That importance not only affects the search results that are found in the SERPs, but in Google’s PageRank and link valuation formulas as well.
With the need for more relevant content and linking partners, website owners are looking for a possible solution. The requirements for help include theme and topic relevant content and linking partners who are also theme and topic related. While there are several ways to achieve relevance, one such method is adding a blog component to your website.
Blogs are regularly updated postings of information, usually related to the theme of a website, which include incoming and outgoing links on the same topics. Once thought to be merely online journals and diaries, blogs have moved far beyond the personal realm and into the world of business and information. Blogs are becoming an important component in many business owners’ toolboxes for marketing, public relations, and search engine optimization.
Businesses in almost every industry can benefit from the blog boost in the search engines. There is little doubt that all websites will receive a healthy injection of relevance, simply by posting regularly to a business blog. Since the posts will be on topics related to the overall website theme, and incoming links will arrive from similarly themed blogs, relevance is an obvious and natural result.
In the early days of the Internet, it was thought that related sites would link naturally to one another. Little thought was given to placements in the various search engines at first. It was generally agreed that good content would attract natural related incoming links from similarly themed websites. The fact of the matter is that what was being described is currently happening with blogs.
Blog posts are generally written on one, but just as often on two, three, or even more related topics. If the topics are not related, they become so by virtue of there being a large number of posts on those formerly unrelated topics. On occasion, the unrelated topics will even appear in the same post. The important aspect of the blog is the overall development of powerful theme relevance.
Bloggers are also free and generous linkers. By regularly linking to interesting blog posts, bloggers provide value to their own readers by offering them the best of other bloggers. These added incoming links provide additional Google PageRank, in addition to boosting search engine rankings.
The clickable links are often rich in the receiving blog’s most important keywords, and are contextually surrounded by theme related content as well. This combination of strong link anchor text and theme relevant content gives the blog exactly what the search engines are seeking. The Google algorithm could have easily been written with blogging in mind.
The primary benefit of maintaining a blog is the regular infusion of fresh theme related content to a website. Either as a cross linked stand alone blog, or with the postings sent by FTP to the main business website, a blog provides abundant content. Since the posts will be mainly about the business and related industry topics, all of the content will feature that highly sought after relevance factor.
Blog posts can be written about industry news and events, new company products, marketing campaigns, public relations efforts, and general conversations with current and potential customers and clients. The flexibility of blog topic options is very wide and usually highly relevant to the content of the site.
As the fresh content, in the form of blog posts, is added to the site, the overall number of website pages gradually increases. Google and the other search engines tend to prefer larger sites over smaller ones. This makes sense, as Google is rewarding what it considers to be authority sites and hub sites. Both categories require larger numbers of pages to achieve.
While some exceptions to that rule do exist and find their way into the SERPs, the tendency is for larger sites, especially those deemed by Google to be authority or hub sites, to achieve better search engine rankings. This is especially true when the added content is both fresh and theme related. Blog posts fill that bill quite nicely.
Because of the high comparative frequency of blog posts being added to a website, the search engine spiders visit a site more often. That regular and frequent reindexing tends to raise a site’s rankings in the search engines. Google almost certainly provides a boost to frequently and freshly updated sites. Blogs are updated so frequently, often on a daily basis, that the maximum fresh content bonus is usually applied. Sites featuring a blog component definitely have a head start in the SERPs, thanks to frequent updating.
Each blog posting has an individual title. By placing keywords in the post title, a powerful search engine ranking boost can be achieved. The posts are often, but not always, archived by post title, making good titles very important. With many blog hosts using the titles as part of individual page URLs, some added benefit is also achieved. Be careful to place the keywords early in the title as the URL will often abbreviate the post title.
The regular blog posts are usually right on the site’s main topics and themes. As a result, the posts also tend to be very rich with the site’s most important keywords and keyword phrases. Along with Google, heavy keyword rewarding search engines like Yahoo! and MSN Search rank sites with blog components very highly.
Because of the powerful and frequently updated themed content, many blogs are moving toward authority site status for their most important keywords. Some blogs have already achieved that exalted level, demonstrating the power of blogging.
Bloggers are generous natural linkers. They readily and frequently link, not only from their blog links list, but from within posts themselves.
Note that most, but not all, bloggers link to other blogs and websites, from their blog’s home page. That has some benefits, and some drawbacks. The upside is the blog’s home page usually has good to very good Google PageRank. The downside is that like many other links pages, a blog’s transferred PageRank is often divided among a large number of blogs and traditional websites.
Being linked from a page with many outgoing links provides more value if the sending page is relevant to the receiving page. In the case of blogs, that is very often the case. Bloggers like to link to other blogs and websites in their special topic area. Because of this relevance, the maximum amount of value from a site to site link of that type can be reached.
While theme relevant links pass along more Topic Sensitive PageRank and more link popularity boost, keep in mind that all links pass value as well. The only difference is unrelated links tend to pass along a lower amount of link benefit to the receiving page.
Bloggers are well known for providing interesting and informative links to their readership from within the blog posts themselves. Keep in mind that bloggers are many times more likely to link to other blogs than to static websites. By not having a blog component on your website, that enormous linking potential is almost entirely lost.
These context sensitive blog links are especially valuable in three ways. The first and obvious benefit is what accrues from any link in the form of link popularity and transferred Google PageRank. The second benefit is from the potentially keyword rich link anchor text from right in the post itself. Often, the blogger will use an entire sentence about the linked material as the link anchor text. Keywords are often found in those linked passages.
The third benefit is from context. Surrounding the link is usually very theme relevant content, containing similar important keyword phrases. That context ensures that the sending page is very theme relevant. Since bloggers tend to read and link to blogs, focussing on their main area of interest, their outgoing links are most likely highly relevant.
Link exchangers will find bloggers who share similar topics to be very receptive link traders. Some people believe that reciprocal links have no value, but that’s not the case at all. All incoming links have value; some simply provide more net benefit than others. Reciprocal links between similarly themed blogs and websites are very good for both parties. Links to and from entirely unrelated sites and blogs offer far less value, but still add some limited benefit.
Fortunately for many bloggers, one-way incoming links from similarly themed blogs are very common events. Very few bloggers fail to link to other interesting blog posts. In fact, linking is part of the power of blogging.
Some blogs are well on their way to achieving hub site status as a result of their generous linking habits. In that sense, linking pays off handsomely for many bloggers.
By adding a blog component to a website, the addition of relevant content is very easy. Simply by adding posts discussing the main topics of the website, a webmaster can reap the benefits of fresh, keyword rich content. At the same time, the search engine bias towards fresh content also boosts a site higher in the search rankings.
Bloggers like to link out to other sites, and especially to other theme related blogs. The additional link power, provided through the natural generosity of blog owners, will help to elevate a site in searches for the site’s most important keywords. Many searchers will find the main site by entering through the blog.
Because the blog postings often include links, valuable keywords regularly appear as link anchor text. As a bonus, those in post links will be surrounded by highly relevant content, giving the link maximum the maximum power available from the blog page.
Along with the added link popularity there will be a corresponding upward hike of a page’s Google PageRank. It is not unusual for a site’s blog component to have a higher PageRank than the website’s home page.
Take the expressway to more relevant links and content, test drive a blog today.