SEO; Quality vs Quantity?

Netmatters Ltd
Posted by Netmatters Ltd
25th August 2015

Why Is More Not Always Better?

When you are trying to optimise your website the one thing that you should always focus on is quality. Google ranks pages based entirely on the quality of the content, links, structure, and entire sitemap so it is important to bear in mind that just because you cram a lot of something into your site, doesn’t mean that it is going to boost you higher in the SERP’s. Google’s forever evolving algorithm has changed the way that we look at SEO, and quality is now imperative for the sustainability of any SEO work carried out.

The obvious shift that Google has taken away from quantity signifies the new world of change, and it also represents a step in the right direction for web sites. Google’s aim is to improve the experience for all of its search users, so naturally by focusing on quality to ensure that the industry leaders with quality digital presences appear near the top of the search results is the end goal for this.

The Path of Quantity

This is the path that SEO took in the past years, and with good reason. Search algorithms rarely award stagnant sites and a time ago if you had 1000 backlinks then this would be hugely beneficial to your site, regardless of link quality. Also SEO had some very questionable techniques back before Google’s algorithm was designed to catch and punish spam, and it was wide practise for a site to cram as many keywords into a text as possible to make it easier to understand for the search engine.

The basic ideology behind this method is that more is always better. You do not need to be skilled in the area of marketing to employ a quantity strategy, and these strategies can even be  automated if you have the right resources. The problem with this is that search engines hate it. They assume that this approach will equal less quality content, and more spam. This is then frowned upon simply because it defeats the purpose of its existence, and you must remember that a search engine wants to give its users the most relevant content possible.

Essentially this path is the path of the past, and Google now punishes approaches like this. Google can detect when you’ve just crammed as many keywords as possible into an article, and Google knows when you have thousands of poor quality backlinks that you have tried cheating the system. Every single Google update in the past years has essentially focuses on discrediting this approach, so don’t expect to get anywhere with it. People look at this and think it is going to be a quick win, and dirty SEO like this may get you somewhere for a short while, but it is also highly likely to get you noticed and flagged for spam by Google in the long run.

The Path of Quality

The road of quality is the road of modern marketing. Google likes high quality content, and if something is particularly high quality it will sell. This approach is mind bogglingly simple, but it is also slightly more difficult. With this strategy if you were obtaining backlinks you would avoid the poor quality links, and if you had the choice you would swap 1000 poor quality links for 10 good quality links with no question. Quality is to focus on what your consumers actually want.

The problem with quality is that it does take time. You cannot create a site and instantly pump out the best quality content like you can pump out ridiculous amounts of low quality content. You cannot automate quality, and there is no set plan to increase the quality of your content. Quality is determined by the individual, and such content is therefore not as easily ranked, and the quality of the content on your site is dependent on the type of people reading it.

The main, very obvious advantage to the quality is road is that you are following the same road as the search engines. If you are creating high quality content, obtaining high quality backlinks, and creating content that is unique then you will be rewarded. Search engines will be able to identify that your content is quality, and it credits this as high quality content is the content it wants to supply to its users.

Which Path Is The Right Path?

The right path in today’s age is always quality. Quality is a long term investment, and you are maintaining a good relationship with the search engines by creating unique, quality content compared to when you are posting potentially spammy content. Quantity is a method that can often just flat out get you nothing but trouble, and you must remember that search engines have had years of work put into them to identify spam. If Google pulls the plug on your site then all of the work that you have ever put into optimising your brand is gone.

Quality is the safe path, and it’s the most effective path in the long run. Getting recognised by search engines can be a lengthy process, and it is difficult to persuade that your content is of high quality at times. If an update comes when you’ve been focusing on quality then you are safe however, you are safe. With quantity, you might not be so safe. All current marketing plans should focus solely on quality, as quantity is about as safe as dancing with the devil. 

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