In the beginning, search engine optimization was much simpler than today.
You conduct a quick site analysis, create a semantic core, make sure that content is original and all keywords are in their places, and that is basically it.
However, things have changed. Today your SEO toolset is much broader and more complex.
But is the current state of things really that tough, or are we bringing too much drama when talking about modern SEO?
Let’s find the answers in this post!
What Exactly Complicates Your SEO Efforts?
SEO itself is a complicated discipline. It combines a large number of tools, best practices that evolve occasionally, and constantly adjusting to Google updates.
The main reason behind the complexity we now experience is numerous changes to Google algorithms like:
- Broad Core Algorithm Updates
- Chrome Security Warnings
- Mobile Speed Update
- Video Carousels, etc.
Each of these technologies slightly modifies the way search engines work, causing ranking shifts that complicate your SEO efforts.
Adjusting your ongoing strategy to all the nuances takes extra time: you have to learn the updated rules, and reconsider your current plans and testing.
Sometimes it takes weeks or even months to see the real impact of upgraded algorithms on your website’s position.
Misinterpreting the New Google Algorithms
A common issue is misunderstanding how a recent algorithm works.
We tend to misinterpret the changes Google brings, and this makes us spend much more time on irrelevant tasks with zero results.
Take Google mobile page speed benchmarks for example.
Once it was announced officially, people dashed to improve page speed in every way imaginable.
But was that necessary?
Well, if page speed slows down, you can definitely expect the site to go down in Google SERPs as well.
However, you should understand that rushing to cut extra milliseconds off your page speed won’t necessarily rank you higher if the speed remains essentially the same.
Especially if your website ranks quite low.
To fix this issue, you will have to solve many more problems before checking whether the page speed is fast enough, and before speeding it up.
A Vast Landscape of SEO Tools
Not only do new restrictions engage you to think out-of-the-box, but the selection of SEO tools is more vast than you may think, and it continues to grow.
When moving from one project to another, or promoting your current website to broaden your horizons, you will likely have to use strategies you have never used before.
No matter how long you have been mastering your SEO skills, there is always room for new approaches.
For example, your clients want to promote their latest project as an informational resource.
Featuring your website’s content in Google News for the first time in your experience can be challenging and nerve-wracking, even when equipped with the top advice on how to succeed in Google News.
How Not to Overcomplicate SEO
No one can argue with the fact that SEO is constantly evolving.
This issue affects every industry, so complaining is not an option for a seasoned professional.
Making things more complicated than they really by overreacting to new changes will not help solve your SEO problems.
Here are a few basic but effective strategies to help you remain calm no matter what happens in the rough-and-tumble world of SEO:
1. Develop a Habit of Reading SEO News Daily
The best way to learn something is to immerse yourself in the subject.
For SEO newbies, scouring multiple SEO-related media sites can be confusing at first.
However, the numerous complaints about indexing troubles and content strategy guides will gradually begin to make sense.
Every experienced SEO specialist has their own polished list of top SEO-based news feeds and forums. Creating your own list is just a matter of time and work experience.
By developing a habit of reading SEO information sites and forums, you can improve your skills and knowledge dramatically:
- Keep educating yourself by watching webinars, and learning new techniques and approaches.
- Update your working checklist with help from definitive guides.
- Read real case studies and learn from other people’s mistakes.
- Let the news help you react faster to the latest algorithm changes.
- Get inspired by fresh information and grow as a professional.
2. Track Progress with Monthly Reviews
Measure your keyword ranking, backlinks success, organic traffic, and visitor behavior every month, and keep tabs on the numbers.
Notice ups and downs, and tweak your SEO campaign to keep it moving in the right direction.
By making minor adjustments, you avoid bigger problems and find alternative opportunities for traffic growth.
3. Watch Your Competitors
Begin by checking their blogs and monitoring the links they build.
Look carefully to see what they are missing.
Read comments to get insights on what the audience likes most, and what it needs.
Leverage these weak spots by providing readers with exactly what they need: more detailed and descriptive information, adjustable content, and better user experience.
SEO is much more than just keywords and links. The bigger picture today covers both great user experience and search engines requirements.
To answer the question posed by this article’s title, I must say yes, SEO has become more convoluted.
It is no longer enough to create just “decent” content stuffed with needed keywords, links, and meta tags. The text must stand out both in appearance and value.
Your website has multiple competitors in the field, so your description of services and blog topics are likely to be extremely similar.
To stand out, you have to find original approaches and amuse users with information they cannot find elsewhere.
Both on-page and off-page SEO have evolved rapidly, and they continue to grow more complex. As professionals, we must be ready for new changes, and not overcomplicate SEO by overthinking it.