It could be said that since the Internet is relatively (and remarkably) new to society, the principles and practices of Internet-based professions are therefore shallow and protean, inherently lacking a sense of lasting purpose. While that understanding of the Internet industry would be mere conjecture (and it’s worth noting that I personally disagree, enjoying the billowing learning curve of Internet marketing), what is true is the fact that like a facet of any emerging industry, Internet marketing is always evolving. With this in mind, following are three critical tactics that dominated web marketing in 2013.
Link Building via Guest Blogging
In short, link building is the practice of building a website’s backlink portfolio in order to increase the SERP rankings for the site’s keywords; in practice, link building requires writing blog posts or articles, and then reaching out to relevant blogs/sites to guest post that article, hosting a link to your site anchored to one keyword or phrase of keywords in the text.
This year, the practice of link building continued to be employed consistently throughout the web marketing profession. In 2012, a Moz study revealed that links from longer (+1000 words), more informative, complex articles with multimedia are weighted heavier on a SERP than short and dull ones. Knowing this, there has been a big push for quality in link building content in recent years, and 2013 is no exception.
Content marketing is like the fraternal twin of link building in the sense that they came from the same place, but they have stark differences. For instance, content marketing and link building can both improve the SERP ranking of a website. However, link building does this by constructing a backlink portfolio from hosted links throughout the web — where the emphasis is on creating a lot of informational, quality content for a niche audience on legitimate, well-visited sites — while content marketing involves creating more entertaining content that will likely be shared (and that hosts backlinks to your site), in order to acquire more viewers. In essence, the best kind of content marketing is content that goes viral.
In 2013, the trend of content marketing being used alongside link building campaigns continued to be a driving strategy in the web marketing industry. In particular, the Content Marketing Institute revealed some new insights regarding content marketing strategies in October 2013.
With social media exploding in every direction and new platforms for sharing seemingly becoming more and more abundant by the day, 2013 saw the continued expanse of social media in web marketing. Although Twitter and Facebook still have large parts of their platforms restricted from Google searches, they serve as quality avenues to promote websites to visitors and share content that may link to your site. What’s more, social media is a way to carefully craft your site’s brand through a living medium and communication channel. In 2013, the impact of Google+ grew substantially, as it became known that posts on Google+ have many advantages over other blog-based platforms. Among these advantages, Google+ posts are crawled and indexed by Google almost immediately, and contain up vote-type metrics called +1’s, which are expected to factor into the credibility of a user/site in the future.