exact and partial match anchor text. This turned the SEO world upside down and has caused many to evolve and change the way they approach search engine optimization forever. I’ve seen three major shifts over the last year, one of which I’m going to address in this post (co-citations), one of which I’m going to address in my next post (page vs whole site SEO), and the last being a shift in brute force link building to a natural link attraction play via content marketing (we’ve covered this a lot on our blog and will continue to cover it in depth in other posts). In today’s post, I’d like to cover co-citations, what they are, and how to leverage this strategy to associate keyword themes with your web page content. To start out, let’s talk about what co-citations are.
What Are Co-Citations?According to a definition that I found on SourceForge.net, co-citations are:
Bibliographic Co-Citation is a popular similarity measure used to establish a subject similarity between two items. If A and B are both cited by C, they may be said to be related to one another, even though they don’t directly reference each other. If A and B are both cited by many other items, they have a stronger relationship. The more items they are cited by, the stronger their relationship is.My interpretation of the definition, in terms of how this affects SEO, is this: If you have a piece of killer content about wedding rings (A), and a link that says “click here” to a website that sells wedding rings (B), then the website that it is linking to must be about wedding rings (C). It’s pretty straightforward and we are seeing a lot of evidence that Google starting to shift their ranking signals away from anchor text (it’s not dead yet) and more toward the idea of co-citation.