Would You Give This Site Your Credit Card?

money-256319_1280No, I’m not asking for money. It’s a legitimate SEO question!

Open up your own site, look at it, and ask yourself, “Would I give this site my credit card?”

This is one of a series of questions that Google engineers ask when evaluating sites to determine if they needed to assess a Panda penalty.

The Panda update is a search filter/algorithm update that occurred in 2011. It was designed to improve the quality of search results. Panda penalties were assessed to prevent sites with poor quality content from ranking well. Since 2011, many more iterations of Panda have rolled out, including other algorithm changes, which reinforces Google’s strong warnings that spam, manipulative tactics and low-quality SEO/web activities will not be tolerated.

So back to your credit card.

Getting a site to be deemed trustworthy enough for an objective person to give their credit card information to is the bare minimum of getting to SEO success.

What this really means, is that your site better look, feel, and act extremely trustworthy. Before you start your SEO endeavors (or parallel to your SEO endeavors), put yourself in a neutral position and answer objectively, “Would you give this site your credit card?” Make sure the answer is a surefire “yes.” If it’s “maybe,” then that is a “no.” And if it’s a clear “no,” then update your design, put social proof on the page, get testimonials, freshen up your copy, and get clear on your messaging.

If you answered “maybe” or “no,” then list out the top three most impactful things you can change or improve that will bring you closer to a surefire “YES.”

To make this actionable and take it one step further, list out the person or resource who will actually do these things, the timeframe to get it done, and the cost if there’s going to be one. And of course time block this on your calendar or put it on a timeline now.

Remember, your site isn’t going to SEO itself. SEO success today requires active upkeep and execution in order to see continued results.

This blog post is an excerpt from my SEO Essentials checklist. Download the full 14 page workbook for free by clicking here.

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Jenny Munn

Jenny Munn is an SEO Strategist who helps organizations get more leads from their website and integrate SEO into their marketing mix. She consults with in-house marketing managers, agencies, and small businesses. Jenny has taught SEO at WordCamp Atlanta, Digital Atlanta, Solo PR Summit, Business Marketing Association, Atlanta Tech Village, and various content marketing and social media organizations.
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