We’ve heard all about the fundamentals of SEO at this point: content, best practices for on-page optimization, link building, local SEO, etc. Sometimes, there are variations with how people describe the same concepts, but they all mostly pan out to the same notions. What makes the biggest difference between one SEO campaign and another isn’t including any of these facets of SEO within the scheme (the short answer to that is you need to have a plan for all of the following in order to compete). It comes down to 1) execution and 2) being able to keep up with the trends that make each one of these disciplines as effective as possible.

For the following fundamentals, here are some new iterations where we’re seeing bigger developments and how we’re addressing each of them.

Content – Discovered by Search Engines/Crawled – Not Indexed

In the world of Google Search Console and website health and maintenance, there are more “not indexed” accusations being thrown around than normal. Under indexed pages, we’re normally used to seeing instances of pages not acknowledged by Google as indexed because of 404 errors, redirects, technical crawling issues, etc. But in this instance, Google is well aware of the page’s existence. They just have no intent on introducing it into search results. Conducting thorough keyword research is crucial for creating content that search engines find valuable and are more likely to index, as it involves choosing relevant keywords and understanding search intent to meet the needs of your audience effectively.

I ask myself first, “Why?” and then “How?” and though both of these will be speculative (but researched), this is where our thoughts lead without knowing how the entire proprietary algorithm works in the first place:

Why is Google Search Console ramping up efforts to not include content in the index even though they know it exists?

Google had submitted to AI content being here to stay months ago, confirmed by their own version (Bard) and our experimental AI articles on our website easily indexing and getting impressions. Because they have accepted AI’s presence on what will be millions, if not billions, of websites, the parameters for deciding what still provides value are the next step. Therefore, the influx of discovered/crawlable content not in the index is a byproduct of increased scrutiny of what would provide value if placed in the SERP.

“How is Google deciding which discoverable and crawlable content shouldn’t be indexed?”

This is, again, speculative but more than likely accurate based on what we’ve already seen from our research:

  • The content is dated and Google has determined it is no longer evergreen and shouldn’t be provided in search results.
  • The content not currently indexed is too similar to existing content on the website that is already indexed, so two results aren’t necessary. For example, a blog in 2020 was written about the specific topic “What to do After You’re Arrested for a DUI,” and in 2022, a blog was written “5 Steps to Take After You’re Arrested for a DUI.” Semantically, they’re too similar, and the more recent one is deindexed, even if it was written completely originally.

Takeaways on How to Address Changes to Content:

  • Keeping an accessible list of previously written blogs to ensure new topics aren’t too similar to existing blogs. If they are, the existing blog can be updated to remain current.
  • For content strategies that often have similar topic coverage (geo-specific content strategies), using references and copy that pertain to that specific geographic area to avoid Google picking it up as similar to existing geographies.
  • Checking in with your Google Search Console periodically to look at Discovered -Not Indexed and Crawlable -Not Indexed pages.

Link Building – Author Attribution Via Internal and External Links

In the ever-changing new world of EEAT standards that Google will begin to endorse more and more, there is a development in tools such as Ahrefs (pictured above) that make a note of inbound links having authorship with the content that the links came from. Some SEOs claim that these links will carry special value, and how this plays out in 2024 is yet to be seen. Adding internal links is crucial for enhancing author attribution and SEO, as it helps search engines understand the relationships between different pages on the website. Keep in mind that there are literally hundreds of ways to obtain links, and many come from website pages that don’t have authors, nor should they be expected to: citations, business directories, industry directories, blog and forum commenting (though the comments are “authored,” they don’t have specific EEAT authorship qualities), press releases (there isn’t an author as much as there is a news source), and many more.

Takeaways on How to Address Changes to Link Building:

  • Use tools like Ahrefs to look into the significance of backlinks having an author associated with the originating webpage.
  • Consider these links to be important in the mix of your overall backlink portfolio

On-Page Optimization – Why On-Page SEO is Important for 2024

As you can see above, we’re more than two months into 2024, and there are still pieces of authoritative content that are optimized for 2023. Incorporating on-page SEO is crucial in this context, as it ensures your web pages remain relevant and authoritative in search engine rankings. With content (somehow) still being created exponentially, the timeliest, updated, and relevant content will likely be the search to prevail, even competing with evergreen, authoritative content. Utilizing an on-page SEO checklist can help ensure all on-page elements, including visuals and multimedia on your web pages, are optimized for the current year. This is why on-page SEO is important; it’s not just about keywords but about maintaining relevancy and authority through comprehensive on-site SEO. Take the time to see how your most steadfast topics can be updated, considering a holistic approach to on-site SEO that includes optimizing all elements (think quotes, anecdotes, statistics, and data, not to mention new mediums of content such as audio, video, and visual (infographics and unique imagery)).

Takeaways on How to Address Changes to On-Page:

  • Linking externally to the most up-to-date resources.
  • Updating resources/stats internally that have dates of 2021 and before (we know there aren’t always studies that drop every single year).

Local SEO – Filtering by Open Hours (and Rating)

Google has been beta testing automatically filtering out GBP listings when they are closed—we’ve seen this happen plenty when doing searches at 7 PM on weekdays or over the weekend. In addition, there is more of a push to let users choose a threshold for reviews, and it doesn’t take an expert to tell you that people are likely not going to choose many services, especially professional services, below a 4.0.

4.5 is an option, and that may very well be a threshold for many people as well.

Takeaways on How to Address Changes to Local SEO:

  • Having a solid ongoing plan for garnering enough reviews to push your listing to a rating of 4.5 or above.
  • Having an afterhours solution in order to genuinely enable your business to say it operates 24 hours a day.

Off-Site – Reddit and Quora

Reddit and Quora are fairly well known for answering general and specific questions in a forum-like setting. You’ve probably used it or answered other people’s questions yourself. It would stand to reason that both of these websites would be featured fairly often for long-tailed searches. But it turns out they’re appearing more often for short-tailed, vanity keywords like those you see above. That is a major development. This highlights the significance of off page seo, which enhances SEO through external platforms like Reddit and Quora, focusing on building backlinks and establishing a social media presence.

Takeaways on How to Address Changes to Off-Site:

Stay tuned for our future blogs!

Elevate Your SEO Strategy with Market My Market’s Expert Team

Staying ahead in the dynamic field of SEO requires more than just knowledge of the fundamentals. It involves constantly evolving tactics and an in-depth understanding of the latest trends that shape how we optimize our digital presence. At Market My Market, we pride ourselves on our ability to not only keep up with the ever-changing landscape of SEO but also be proactive in adopting and implementing new strategies.

Don’t let your SEO efforts become outdated or fall by the wayside. Partner with Market My Market to ensure your strategies are as current and effective as they can be. Schedule a discovery call today at (866) 270-2250 or fill out our contact form to start enhancing your SEO game. To achieve the goal of improving search engine rankings, it’s crucial to employ up-to-date SEO strategies that focus on optimizing web pages and avoiding outdated tactics like keyword stuffing.