Co-citation is a evolving ranking metric that has become more important in the world of SEO. It relies less on the link and anchor text used within the link, and more about what the text located around the brand name says about that brand.
For example, if you take the sentence “Chicago SEO company LinchpinSEO said focusing on value is key when it comes to content creation”, Google associates “Chicago SEO Company” and “LinchpinSEO.com” and gives LinchpinSEO search relevancy for the phrase “Chicago SEO Company”, all without any of those words being linked to LinchpinSEO.com.
What does this mean?
- This means that traditional PR type mentions can have powerful implications and value when it comes to influencing rankings.
- It’s not all about inbound “links”.
- Anchor text might cease to be the most important factor when it comes to building strong rankings.
- The key is making sure the content that is modifying your brand name (in the above example is would be “Chicago SEO Company”) is a valuable and relevant descriptor of your offerings.
This Whiteboard Friday Rand from SEOmoz talks about a prediction he has about the evolution of external ranking factors such as inbound links and anchor text and how they might be replaced by co-citations.
Anchor Text is Dying…And Will Be Replaced by Co-Citation
I would urge you, anytime you see something ranking that doesn’t have the classic SEO targeting types of things, the anchor text and on-page text and the title tag, you take a deep look and try and figure out whether co-citation is what’s causing it to rank higher.