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Running a small business of your own can be quite challenging. However, if done properly, then you stand to gain much more than financial independence – you have the chance to truly become your own boss. This can only be made possible by following the right financial, legal, and business advice.

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A BRIEF HISTORY OF MAJOR GOOGLE ALGORITHM UPDATES OVER THE YEARS

Over the years from the turn of the century, the Google algorithm has been updated a number of times. Below are some major updates from the year 2000 to 2020.

 

Updates from the early 2000s

On December 1st 2000, Google Inc the developer of Google launched the Google toolbar and the Toolbar PageRank (TBPR) with it. It enabled users to search for information from any web page using Google’s fast search technology for free. This began SEO changes.

In 2003 there was a total of three confirmed and four unconfirmed updates. On February 1st, 2003 Boston was announced at SES Boston, the first-named Google update. The first few updates were the “Google Dance” a combination of algorithm changes and major index refreshes, although Google had originally aimed at a major monthly update. The monthly idea vanished as updates became more frequent. On July 1st 2003 the Fritz update brought an end to “Google Dance” the index was changed daily. The third confirmed update named Florida was announced on November 1st, 2003.

On February 1st, 2004 Google announced the update Brandy. The changes rolled out included Latent Semantic Indexing (LSI), major index expansion, increased attention to the relevance of anchor text, and the link “neighborhoods” concept. It increased Google’s synonyms understanding and increased the accuracy of keywords analysis.

Nofollow announced on the 1st of January 2005 that it was for cleaning up links that were not vouched for, this included spam comments. On May 1st, 2005 Bourbon was announced and it involved 3.5 changes in search quality and changed the treatment of non-canonical URLs and duplicate content.

Universal Search was the only confirmed update for 2007 announced on the 1st of May. Google joined search results with News, Images, Videos, and other verticals.

2008 saw two confirmed updates. On April 1st, 2008 Dewy was announced, it was suspected Google was pushing its internal properties down but there wasn’t sufficient evidence. On the 1st of August, 2008 Google Suggest was brought in and it aided in displaying suggested searches as users typed questions in a drop-down menu.

In 2009 the first confirmed update was Rel-canonical Tag on the 1st of February. It allowed canonicalization signals to be sent to search bots by webmasters. The second update was Real-time Search on the 1st of December. Real-time search for different sources was integrated into a feed on SERPs.

 

Updates from 2011-2020.

Most of Google’s important algorithm updates started in 2011. The Panda update was launched on February 23rd, 2011 and was one of the major updates. The update mainly focused on sites that were specifically made to rank in the search engines. It determined whether sites genuinely offered the information the word a user searched. Affiliate sites and sites with little content were adversely affected by the Panda update. It impacted SEO, as site owners have to create high-quality pages.

In 2012 there three major updates, the Venice, Penguin, and Pirate updates. Venice was launched on February 27th, 2012 and it included search results depending on a users IP address or location. The Penguin update announced on April 24th, 2012 was designed to deal with different spam issues such as keyword stuffing. Pirate was the last major update and was announced on August 10th, 2012. It dealt with penalizing sites with continuous copyright violations.

The Hummingbird was the major update for 2013 announced on August 26th, 2013. This update laid down a foundation for Google’s voice search. It ensures every word in a phrase is paid attention to, hence giving a user a precise answer instead of a list.

In 2014 the Pigeon update was announced on the 24th of July. It impacted results pages and Google maps, giving options to search results related to a user’s location. The other major update for 2014 was the HTTPS/SSL announced on the 6th of August. Google gave a slight boost in ranking for sites that implemented HTTPS correctly, to increase security between the user and a website.

Two major updates were announced in 2015, the Mobile Update and RankBrain. The mobile update, gave a ranking advantage to the mobile-friendly site since almost 50% of search queries were from mobile phones. The RankBrain update features the ability to guess search results even to words it doesn’t know, and give results to words with similar meaning.

In 2016 the Possum update helped improve the local SEO results making them more varied to the physical location. Penguin updates were also confirmed by Google in 2016.

In 2018 there were two major updates, the Speed Update and Medic. The speed update involved ranking sites that delivered information faster.

The BERT update announced in 2019 was one of the biggest updates in the last five years. It is a machine learning algorithm, that can figure out the full context of a word based on the words before and after it. It is a major upgrade in comprehending a search query.

The current updates for 2020 are the Core Update and the Features Snippet De-duping. The Features Snippet De-duping involves, featured snippets no longer appearing as organic results like before.

Google updates have increasingly advanced from the early 2000s. It now gives users exactly what they are looking for.

Discover Six Reasons Why Blogger Outreach Rules Among Expert SEOs

Link building remains a popular topic, with many people wondering what’s the most efficient way. Naturally, few experts agree on all points. One method that they all approve of equally is blogger outreach. Ahrefs did a great video on what outreach entails, but we will get into it in our article aswell. This is just a quick primer:

Outreach Is a Cost-Effective SEO Tactic

SEO gets expensive, so many business owners look for methods that won’t break the bank. Guest Posting isn’t free, but it’s less costly than alternative methods.

The outreach itself is the only expense. Once the backlink is in place, there’s nothing more to payout. Mainly, the reaching out can happen automatically with a tool or service, although most will charge a fee. If you want to do all the work, you can.

Ultimately, when outreach is successful, the links are valuable. They are topical and relevant. Compared to the expense of renting links, the cost is one-time. That’s the primary reason that all SEO experts recommend this tactic. They also enjoy the fact that the links are on aged pages already indexed in Google that have value. That’s much better than getting a link on a brand new page. It saves them time and helps drive the SEO value to the linked pages much quicker. You can hire a VA to do the outreach for you or try a one of the many guest posting service available online.

 

It’s a Way to Avoid Penalties

Penalties from search engines turn into significant problems fast. They suppress a website’s rankings, preventing them from getting traffic. That will set a digital company back quicker than anything else. That’s why SEOs need to embrace legitimate tactics. Outreach is one because it’s not the type of strategy to land anyone in hot water.

That removes a significant concern for the SEO. They need to stay on the right side of the search engines and cannot afford to get a client’s site dinged. Outreach will keep everyone safe because these editorial links or  niche edits usually came freely. Sure, somebody asked, but that’s not manipulative and won’t end up getting anyone in trouble.

Severe penalties send everyone back to ground zero. That is almost unrecoverable for most businesses. It’s crucial to stick with White Hat link building techniques that are proven and stand the test of time. If your website has fantastic unique content, it will attract its share of links naturally. That’s why it’s essential only to augment those backlinks with white hat tactics.

 

The Links Are Effective and Get Results

Useful backlinks move web pages in the search rankings. Over the years, SEOs continue to study the types of links and the impact they bring. Blog links have always been efficient at helping webmasters achieve results.

If the blog has a lot of traffic, the links are outstanding. They will bring targeted traffic, which has a chance to convert. That’s the type of backlink that is always preferred because it has an economic value. Depending on which products you sell, one conversion could well be enough to take care of the cost of the entire campaign.

In the case of competitive search engine terms, a blog link could well be the difference between placing high or out of the money. The topical relevance and strength of the linking domain are the main factors. If the website is accessible and has links from many different sources, chances are high; the backlink will be sufficient.

 

Stay on Topic for Maximum Gains

Search engines don’t reveal all of their secrets, but some principles are well known. Topical relevance remains a crucial factor and is the kind of link that winning webmasters always want to acquire.

When reaching out to bloggers, make sure they’re all related. There’s no reason to try to acquire links from sources that are not precise matches. The traffic won’t convert, and it’s doubtful the search engine will pay much attention. Since you’re taking the time to find the best links, focus on ones that will move the needle.

That means don’t ignore the best websites in the niche. They may ignore your request, but you’ll never know without trying. A link from a top site can make a massive difference, so always keep trying to get yours.

 

Research for the Best Backlinks

It will depend on which technical approach you take to find the blogs. Many tools will do the job; most of them are automated. That means they’ll turn up extensive lists of potential candidates. It may be worth reviewing them all for increased accuracy. It’s unlikely they’ll be on-topic at the start.

Anyone who wants to achieve long-term success with link building learns one thing. Links need to stay up, no matter what. That makes the demand for “permanent links” even more crucial than ever. It’s tough to build up domain authority if all the links are temporary and expire.

Outreach makes sense because the SEO targets pages that exist and have been around for a while. They aren’t likely to drop off the internet or drop their domain. That means an investment now of time and effort could pay off significantly for years. Otherwise, it can become a frustrating situation of getting ahead only to fall back.

It’s worth building up databases of blogs in your desired niches. Creating long-lasting relationships with bloggers is the best way to earn links. Most, if not all, blogs have a contact form. Reach out and introduce yourself and see if there are any interactive areas worth exploring.

Business development requires constant outreach. You likely can’t get enough growth when it comes to your customer base. That’s why targeting decision-makers who can directly build links makes sense. Business is all about relationships, and it’s no different for the best link builders online.

Investing in relationships provides a better return than just randomly targeting people. It may take longer to get where you want to be, but the effects are stable. You won’t have to retreat due to penalties or change up a strategy because of over commitment. Know the blogs in your niche and try a guest posting service when necessary. It’s a comprehensive method to ensure that you get the visibility needed to craft a brand.

Without regular posting or blog outreach, your site will lack the quality signals needed to earn high rankings. Even worse, the links can’t suddenly stop one day. There’s no way to reach a point where a website will safely rank forever.

 

Focus on the Fundamentals

Content and SEO continue to go together. The idea of content is expanding and includes different types of media, but as long as it’s useful, there will be a place for it online. With niche buyers from every category represented, there’s no shortage of potential customers on the web.

Search engines always change their patterns, but they love fresh content, active backlinks, and functional and beautiful websites. Blogs continue to provide value; therefore, links from their pages will continue to drive SEO merit.

The fundamentals will keep your website hopping with new traffic. There’s no reason to fret over the latest and greatest techniques when people still dominate SEO with proven principles. Why bang your head into the wall when you now know three reasons that blogger outreach makes sense. The topic may advance in coming years, but for right now, you can’t beat the effort put into this tactic.

Financial Tips for Small Business Owners

Managing a business is no laughing matter. As you may have realized by now, small business owners need to deal with a lot of responsibilities. Aside from making sure that their company is able to provide a quality service to its customers, they also have to ensure that their finances are kept in order. Needless to say, this is on top of their already overwhelming, and often stifling, workload.

That being said, properly managing one’s finances should be a top priority for any business owner. The success of your business quite literally depends on it. The last thing any entrepreneur would want is to make any sort of financial mistakes.

To help you with that, we have come up with a couple of practical tips to help your business improve the state of its finances.

  • Keep Your Expenses Separate – It is vital that you keep your personal and business expenses separate. This is a pretty basic rule that everyone should follow if you want to avoid any tax troubles down the road.
  • Have a Retirement Plan – Do yourself a favor and think of the long game. Everything that you do now follows the ultimate goal of giving you a comfortable lifestyle by the time you retire. The best way to do that is by making sure that you contribute early into your 401k account.