Though marketers might have you believe that content creation is the only way to get noticed online, the truth is advertising is far from dead ? it’s just hiding.
Rather than using obtrusive banner ads and flashing sidebars, smart businesses have begun investing in so-called native ads, which blend seamlessly into any website’s style to prevent disruptions to user experience. Even better, like content, native ads give a major boost to your SEO efforts. Here’s how.
You Want Lots of Links for High Rankings
While Google’s algorithms for determining rankings change seemingly every month, one factor always remains: Links. So far, link building is hands-down the most important activity you can do to improve your site’s SEO ? more important than keyword selection, meta-tag creation, and content optimization combined. The fact is, the more links on other sites that point to yours, the easier search engines can find your site.
The reason for this dates back to the advent of Google, when founder Larry Page created PageRank, software that could determine the popularity of webpages using incoming links. Page used the same tech to develop Google, which quickly became the most powerful search engine on the Web. Eventually, Page used PageRank’s numbers to understand quality of webpages, which only further improved the effectiveness of Google’s searches.
However, before Google began organizing search results based upon quality, websites began abusing the power of link building (as well as other optimization techniques). Many added their webpages to directories in an attempt to trick Google’s spiders into ranking their sites higher ? and it worked. However, today, Google actually penalizes such blatant attempts at SEO with lower rankings, though, importantly, advertisements still contribute positively to a webpage’s rank.
Thus, having incoming links is crucial to your site’s placement on search engine results, but there is a limit to how and where you should build links. Thankfully, native advertising makes the process so much simpler.
Native Advertising Is Good for Everyone
There is a reason Google is trying to curb the popularity of artificial link-building: It hurts the search engine’s ability to provide relevant and valuable results to Web users. When the most optimized pages always outrank those most applicable to search keywords, users leave discouraged, and the Internet as a whole suffers.
In an ideal world, your website would naturally gain incoming links from Web users who know your company and appreciate your products and content. However, now that nearly every business has come online, it is nearly impossible for one to stand out without engaging in active SEO, which means actively attempting to accumulate incoming links. Unfortunately, getting publishers to add your links to their sites isn’t always easy. Because Google punishes publishers and businesses for obvious paid links, publishers are hesitant to add links to their sites without context.
Enter: native advertising. Though it comes in many styles ? from full content creation to native ad networks ? native advertising blends into a publisher’s existing content, providing value to everyone involved: Business owners achieve more incoming links as well as added visibility for their pages and products; publishers gain income and additional content to populate their sites; and users benefit from enhanced website style and advertisements tailored to their interests.
As a result, higher quality sites (meaning those deemed reliable and popular by Google) are generally more likely to accept only native advertising, which means your SEO will increase dramatically by opting to subscribe to a native ad network or engage in content creation.
Traditional Advertising Is Dying
Though native advertising’s benefits are incredibly useful to your site’s SEO, making the switch to native advertising should be your top priority for another reason entirely: the imminent death of traditional advertising. As more and more businesses customize their advertising content to specific groups of Web users ? and as consumers demand more interaction from their favorite brands ? the centuries-old style of one-way advertising (a la print ads and television commercials) is declining slowly, painfully, and obviously.
Native advertising is the future, for better or for best. By using native strategies to increase your incoming links, your site will rank higher on search engine results, but that isn’t even the most powerful benefit of the advertising style. By integrating your ads into content Web users want, your business becomes a contributor with a devoted online following. In the end, your increased SEO and improved reputation mean one thing: more sales.
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