(this article was originally posted August 21, 2015)

SEO is dead.

I’m sure you’ve heard that a lot lately, right?

Well if your SEO strategy up till now has simply been to slap as many local keywords into your pages as possible and get a huge volume of cheap backlinks from random sites – then yeah… SEO is dead.

For the rest of us though, SEO is actually more alive than ever and it’s evolved to a point where using the cheap shortcuts from 2006 doesn’t “cut” it.

So what’s the secret?

The Shortcut To High SEO Rankings In 2015…

There’s isn’t one …sorry. *SOB* *SOB*

Today, it takes real time & effort to grow your online presence and build your sites authority.

…Especially if you’re a smaller business – SEO can really be a full time job.

Writing content, getting citations, setting up profiles, optimizing pages, social interactions…the list goes on.

But the good news is that SEO has a snowball effect. Within a few years, you won’t have to worry about doing SEO – you can just put out the content and your authority and fans will push you to the top of the rankings.

I sense a great disturbance in the SEO world… as if millions of business owners cried out at once and then were suddenly silenced. – “A few YEARS?!?!?!”

Yes, I know that’s not what any business owner wants to hear.

We all want to rank #1 for our keywords by the end of the month. But the fact is that SEO is a long-term investment and should be considered your end-game when you’ve exhausted other forms of paid advertising (which has the fastest cash on cash return).

It’s good to factor in at least 10% – 15% of your marketing budget for long-term SEO the rest should go into forms of advertising that have faster returns like Pay Per Click (PPC) ads.

The key takeaway here for your SEO is…

Build Your Credibility First And The Rankings Will Follow

Look at Wikipedia…

They’re gigantic and rank in the top 10 for practically everything.

Even some of their newest pages absolutely crush competing sites that have been around for over 10 years.

How do they do it?

Well rest assumed that they don’t have some big SEO team working ‘round the clock for millions of dollars – that’s for sure. The key to their SEO domination is that they’re a beast of authority.

They’ve been around for so long and have so many mentioned on countless pages that they can rank well for pretty much anything just by having some basic on-page SEO done such as having the keyword in the META tags, title and in an H1 tag.

It’s all about being an authority.

Once you’re considered an authority people (and search engines) take you more seriously and give more weight to the things you say.

Another way of looking at is when you think about the President.

The President doesn’t know everything and they certainly aren’t an expert at everything. But If they start talking to you or giving you advice, it doesn’t matter what the subject is – you’re going to listen and give it a little more weight than if it was just some average Joe on the street because it’s “the President”.

Taking Action: Get The Ball Rolling

It’s never too late to start building authority for your website/business. There is a wide range of things you can do to start building your authority today such as:

  • Press Releases (PRweb & PRlog)
  • Social Engagement (Facebook & Twitter)
  • Content Marketing (Blog Posts, Youtube & Webinars)
  • Local Profiles (Yelp & Google Local)
  • Networking (Guest Blog Posts, Interviews & News Stories)

Now obviously unless you secretly have 2 or 3 pocket-sized clones at your disposal that you can boss around, chances are you won’t have time to do all this stuff yourself on an everyday basis.

And that’s ok – there are plenty of SEO firms out there that you can outsource this stuff to. But you need to be careful who you decide to work with as you really do get what you pay for in the SEO industry.

Stay tuned for my next post where I talk more about finding a good SEO firm and how price affects the quality of service.