Search engine optimisation is a key tool to ensure that websites and webpages rank higher in the search engines like Google, Yahoo and Bing. Staying current with the ever-changing developments in SEO trends can be a time-consuming challenge in itself. Here we’ll take a look at the things you can do to keep your knowledge current. via pixabay.com Google Webmaster Central Blog One of the best places to start is to add the Google Webmaster Central Blog to your RSS feed to be updated when there is a new post. Google uses the blog to keep webmasters informed about news and changes to how their Googlebot crawls through both the internet and individual websites, and also how their indexing strategy is currently working. Google Webmaster Tools offers a comprehensive way to access information behind the website. And Kissmetrics produced an excellent introductory tutorial that explains how to get the best out of this service. Look at SEO Case Studies from Industry Leaders Writers like Neil Patel of QuickSprout and Matthew Woodward regularly provide detailed case studies about different aspects of SEO to investigate whether new SEO approaches are worth trying out or if classic SEO practises like layered link building are still worth pursuing. However, whilst these writers are prolific when it comes to writing about both SEO and internet marketing, BacklinkO is the real place to go for in-depth case studies about SEO. The author, Brian Dean, posts as infrequently as once every 2-3 weeks, however he investigates new SEO trends, explores backlink ideas and new approaches with a furore that few other writers can touch. Some of his articles take days to write with case studies run over weeks or months in the lead up to producing the written post. Choose SEO Information Sources That Have Stood the Test of Time Websites like Blog for Web which feature articles on inter-related subjects like SEO, SMM, hosting and domains, web design and web software can provide a valuable insight into the online universe, doing business online and how to market in a digital world. The site not only covers SEO topics, but it is also tells readers what not to bother with. Older SEO strategies that are no longer effective are relayed to readers to save them countless hours trying approaches that no longer are reliable or work at all. SEO Trends Over the Ages SEO trends are constantly changing. Search Engine Land even wrote up an interesting piece about how SEO trends have changed over past 25 years (yes, SEO has been around as long as that!). Commonalities with SEO Trends That Peak, Then Disappear What always stands out is the number of SEO trends which don’t last. They come in, interest peaks, and the herd dive in adopting the new method until it becomes painfully obvious how the ranking system is being gamed. At which point, Google and other search engines like Bing and Yahoo change their search algorithm to adjust for the latest manipulation and every increased ranking position evaporates instantly. Whether the webmaster, SEO or internet marketer considers themselves “white hat”, “grey hat” or “black hat”, the fact remains that the newest SEO trends often revolve around the latest findings on how Google is ranking certain niches, under specific criteria, better than others. Niche sites, product review sites and other smaller efforts may once again rank well against the Amazon product pages or against the manufacturer’s page for the product. But this result never lasts… Are you going to play the long game or the short game? Going Long or Going Short? Smart SEO can be about looking at acceptable ways to broaden the appeal of a website and its content. What will draw readers to the site to learn more? What will cause readers to become buyers of own-branded products or products from other companies that are sold through affiliate links? The more manipulative an SEO strategy is, the more unorthodox it is, the less likely it will be a good idea. Sooner or later all mainstream SEO strategies will be caught up to by Google and the benefit will likely become a penalty or a deficit later on. Removing those ill-advised links is not half as easy as getting them put online in the first place. Going long involves planning an SEO strategy that will stand over time without causing major highs and lows in the ranking position for different keywords. Smoother results are more reliable and can lead to steady increases in both traffic and revenue if managed properly. This doesn’t mean that all the latest SEO trends should be ignored. However, what it does strongly suggest is that a stern eye should be cast over each new SEO strategy to determine whether it will later be seen as a manipulation by the search engines which will creates a strong negative reaction down the line. Going Short Means Chasing a Rabbit down a Hole A short-term focus on SEO results using the latest new-fangled SEO strategy can be like chasing every rabbit down a rabbit hole not knowing where the hole will take you. A website managed in this way is likely to be focused on short-term thinking, which ultimately is not a good long-term strategy. More than likely this obsession with faster and faster SEO results from each SEO campaign will lead to a tendency to crash and burn in the search engine rankings. Recovering Sites Damaged By SEO Takes Longer Than Imagined Recovery times for a site with a Google penalty can be steep. Unless you’re running multiple niche sites on the basis that they’ll be replaced inside of 6-12 months with a newer site so losing a high ranking site doesn’t matter all that much, then a longer-term approach is required. Even if you’re planning for ranking obsolescence, you’ll still need to determine whether the ends justify the means in terms of money spent, earnings received and overall profitability. Stay Focused on Smarter SEO Trends Trends for SEO do matter. Read top SEO blogs and case studies to stay abreast of the latest SEO development. These can help highlight what has changed over the last few months based on recent Google algorithm updates and the findings developed through recent SEO case studies conducted. From this approach, actions can be altered to take advantage of the SEO trends. However, one has to be careful which new SEO trends to follow and which to ignore. Following them all is unlikely to be a successfully strategy going forward. ________________________________________________________________________________ Tweak Your Biz is a thought leader global publication and online business community. Today, it is part of the Small Biz Trends stable of websites and receives over 300,000 unique views per month. Would you like to write for us? An outstanding title can increase tweets, Facebook Likes, and visitor traffic by 50% or more. Generate great titles for your articles and blog posts with the Tweak Your Biz Title Generator.