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What Is Google’s Algorithm Change “Top Heavy” And What Does It Mean For Me?

What Is Top Heavy?

Top Heavy 2 is an adjustment to the original Top Heavy algorithm change that occurred in January 2012.  This change was in response to users constantly complaining about landing on web pages and not seeing any relevant content to what they searched for.  Above the fold refers to everything a user sees when they land on your website, the upper most region of the web page where most websites put their most important content.

In the past, SEOs would put lots of keyword dense content below the fold in hopes that they could get rankings by putting content the user most likely will not read below the fold, in essence, tricking Google into believing they have great content related to that query.

Why All The Recent Algorithm Changes?

Throughout 2012 Google has sent a strong and very clear message on search engine results; that is quality.  In previous years SEO was an additional service many development companies provide and just purchase links and markup the service.  A lot of companies made good money during this time period, meanwhile putting a bad mark on industry leaders that provide great on-page SEO, inbound marketing and ethical services that result in natural link acquisition that ultimately increase rankings and sustain rankings over a long period.

Google knew what was going on, and now seems as though they have finally had enough of people buying links, spinning content, stuffing content and overwhelming the user will content that isn’t readable.

 What Does This Mean For Me?

Fortunately, the recent algorithm changes focus entirely on user experience and quality.  If you are trying to give your customer the best experience on your website and have good intentions, you will continue to see your rankings move in an upward trend.  If you are trying to outsmart Google and manipulate the algorithm, you will most likely see short-term gains that will be followed with a significant drop and increase efforts in recovery.

If you keep your user in mind and try and create great content, great tools and a great product or service, you will ultimately get links naturally and see great results.  That being said, you still need great on-page SEO, rapid page load speed and a compliant website in order to see great results.

Where Do I go From Here?

In general, create exceptional content and built a strong community.  This is not an easy process, you have to become an authority in your industry so people will respect your content and see value in it.  When we say create exceptional content, we don’t just mean create a weekly blog post.

Find creative ways to not only promote your business, but also provide helpful resources and build interactive media to keep your users engaged.  Your content has to be purposeful and fulfill a need, people in general are becoming smarter on the web and don’t waste time with thin content, everything needs to have substance.  Oh yeah, and share everything!

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