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How to Make the Hottest SEO Trend Work for You

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“What’s the hottest trend in search-engine optimization that you’ve never heard of (yet)?” asks Christopher S. Penn in a recent post at the Awaken Your Superhero blog. It’s LDA, he reports.

Penn cites a series of SEOmoz posts on Latent Dirichlet Allocation (LDA)—a context-based algorithm for determining search relevance. According to SEOmoz research, on-page content may play more of a role in your rankings than previously thought.

That’s because the LDA algorithm (which Google may be using, SEOmoz notes) “looks at the total picture of the content and its context,” Penn explains. A Web page about World of Warcraft, for example, needs to mention “paladins, death knights and fish feasts” to rank well with LDA, he notes.

So, how do you act on this knowledge? Penn offers three ways to optimize on-page content for LDA’s critical gaze:

Use the rel=canonical tag on all your original content. As contextual content becomes more important to search engines, the temptation to use someone else’s content (i.e., yours) will be much greater, Penn warns. To assign some level of ownership to your content, Penn advises applying the rel=canonical tag to your site pages.

Stay on topic. Your website content “needs to have lots of original, high-quality, on-topic content using semantically related words … that correlate to the search terms you’re going after,” Penn advises. You must “do the hard work of creating good stuff in order to leverage this algorithm effectively,” he explains.

Stop giving away so much. Don’t give away the keys to the kingdom—your fab content—to social-media sites, Penn advises. Though it’s fine to share excerpts, Penn draws the line at giving away large chunks of context-rich copy to sites you don’t control.

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