SEO is constantly evolving and changing, so many experts and industry leaders spend a lot of time crafting up new ways of thinking and new processes to help create a new, successful strategy. One of the latest terms in the SEO world is "cocitation," which deals with what is happening around links (both internal, external, and backlinks). As a company, it's important to consider why cocitation just might be the small change you need to create that winning SEO campaign.
What Is SEO Cocitation? Different Aspects
There are really three core concepts that make up cocitation. Below explains the different aspects and what they mean to you:
- Transitive Property. This is the heart and soul of the cocitation concept. It all deals with link juice flowing both backwards and forwards. In other words, two different websites could be beneficial to each other if they simply have another website in common. Consider the following example:
Website A links to Website C. Website A also links to Website B. The authority connected with Website C is also going to affect Website B.
If Website C has poor authority, that poor authority might transfer to Website B despite Website B never having linked to that poor site. However, the transitive property typically refers to positive transfers.
- Link to Authoritative Websites. When thinking about cocitation, you have to adopt the attitude that linking to authoritative websites is a good thing for both Google as well as reader experience. This is sometimes hard to grasp because it seems as though you're helping the competition (in a sense you are), but the competition should also help you in return. In the end, linking to these sites is more beneficial than ignoring them. Hint: Try to link to relevant, high authoritative sites as opposed to your competition if possible.
- Semantic Similarity. This refers to the words that occur around the links. Experts are starting to explore the idea that the words on the pages that link to a website actually matter in the Google algorithm. Sites are ranking on keywords that are not used as anchors for links.
Why SEO Cocitation Matters and What It Means to You
The idea that links affect your website just by association or through an indirect source, helps to change the way that businesses and SEOs should think about linking. Suddenly, the links on your page and the backlinks you earn aren't enough of an indicator when it comes time to measure your success. Words surrounding links as well as the transitive property links come into play, and its only a matter of time before Google makes this way of thinking more important. After all, Google wants to crate a search engine where all types of association matter, and it wants to evaluate based on more than just links. The cocitation ideology is a step in this direction.
So what changes need to be made? Businesses should always link liberally to other authoritative websites, stay away from poor websites of any kind whether its directly or indirectly, and always be aware of what other sites the sites are linking to before you enter into any sort of link exchange, partnership, or giveaway.