Black Friday sale weekend: Go green with sustainable SEO

This year’s Black Friday sale at Yoast is all about going green. Getting green bullets in order to outrank those competitors in the search engines! And, going green also has to do with sustainability. How do you keep doing SEO in an efficient and successful way? How do you keep ranking in the long run? If you’re not in it for the short-term success, but for the long haul. And is Artificial Intelligence (AI) a sustainable SEO solution? Read all about sustainable SEO in this blog post! 

Don’t forget to buy your Yoast SEO Premium plugin with 30% off this Black Friday weekend! And in the spirit of going green, Yoast will plant one tree for every sale we make this weekend.  

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What is sustainable SEO? 

Ranking in search engines usually doesn’t happen overnight. It’s hard work. So, if you do succeed in ranking high in Google, you want to keep ranking that high in Google. A good SEO strategy takes time and effort and is always focused on long-term results. In order to do that – in order to have a sustainable SEO strategy – you need to comply with Google’s mission. Google’s mission is to organize the world’s information and make it universally accessible and useful. Google wants to give people the information they find accessible and useful. That means that you need to make sure that your website provides just that. 

No games and no tricks

In the old days, SEO was all about tricks. You could write a text and mention your keyword in every other sentence. That would help with your ranking. Writing white text on a white background could fool Google. But Google has gotten amazingly smart in understanding texts. The algorithm of Google is trying to mimic a human being. It tries to read texts like human beings. And texts that are awful to read, because you use your keyword in every other sentence are not liked by Google. The many different updates of Google – Panda, Hummingbird, BERT- have all shown us that Google ranks texts that are easy to read. Google wants to serve its users with accessible and useful information.

SEO should not be a game. SEO is not a trick. We often joke that the acronym of SEO actually stands for Seriously Effortful Optimization. Writing high-quality content, providing a good user experience (UX), and building a beautiful and accessible website is a lot of work. Shortcuts often lead to suboptimal results. Games and tricks lead to a bad user experience and penalties by Google.

Is Artificial Intelligence a trick? And is it a bad trick?

Using Artificial Intelligence (AI) to write content is a shortcut. You don’t have to do the hard work. Does that mean that using AI cannot be part of a sustainable SEO strategy? Will it be bad for your rankings? Not necessarily. The latest AI tools are actually quite good. They use natural language processing and actual draft readable en findable texts, optimized for the search engines without overdoing it at all. I tried out a couple of tools and was not disappointed at all. My favorite so far (although I haven’t done extensive research yet) is copymatic. You can do a free trial and see what a text could read like. I don’t think these texts will hurt your rankings. These tools can actually help you write texts that are nice and easy to read.

This does not mean, however, that writing is not an important skill. Nor that AI can take over writing blog posts altogether. Texts written by AI don’t provide any original ideas. If you want to write a text about guinea pigs, the AI tool uses information that’s already out there on the internet to draft a text about guinea pigs. The AI isn’t able to come up with new information about guinea pigs. Perhaps that isn’t a big deal if you write about guinea pigs or if you draft a lot of product descriptions. But, for a lot of websites, original ideas are important.

I always state that high-quality content has three major demands. It should be original, it should be readable and it should be findable. The AI tools can help you make your content more readable and findable. But, your content will not be original if it is written entirely by AI. You should write content because you have a story to tell or a vision to share. Writing is a means to get a certain message across. It should be more than just some generated information about guinea pigs.

So, is Artificial intelligence a bad idea?

Using an AI tool to write your content is not necessarily a bad idea. It could even fit well into a sustainable SEO strategy. It all depends on how you use such a tool! Make sure you always think for yourself. You should be the architect of the story you want to tell. The idea, the message, the originality should come from you. But if you’re the architect, you design the building. Someone else can do your construction work. If you use an AI tool to do your construction work for you, it could probably work out just fine! Just make sure to design an awesome story!

Some tips on how to do sustainable SEO 

What should you be doing if your focus on ranking in Google in the long run? Let’s check out our three top tips!

1. Write some awesome cornerstone content

Make sure to write some really good articles on your website. Really put an effort into writing articles with content that is evergreen and valuable for years to come. Make sure to update that article regularly. Those articles should be lengthy, well-optimized, readable little gems.

2. Get your internal linking structure in good shape

Google has a hard time figuring out which content is the most important. Your internal linking structure is really important to help Google figure out where the most important content on your website is located. Internal linking is something you need to maintain and update regularly.

3. Regularly do keyword research

You need to make sure you’re writing about the topics your audience wants to read about. And that could very well change over time. So, every now and then you need to get inside the heads of your readers again. Which topics do they like, which words are they using to search and find your content? Is your keyword strategy still up to date or does it need refinement?

Conclusion: Sustainable SEO needs to be part of your routine!

In order to really have a sustainable SEO strategy, you need to have a routine. You just need to make sure to regularly evaluate what you’re doing. You can definitely use tools like Semrush for your keyword research or even an AI tool for your content. But you should never stop thinking and evaluating yourself. Sustainable SEO has to do with carefully thinking about what content would benefit your user most. If you keep your audience in mind, you’ll always be on the right track.

And don’t forget the Yoast Black Friday sale, which allows you to get Yoast SEO Premium and all of the other premium plugins at a 30% discount! This will really help you take your SEO to the next level.

Coming up next!

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