It's Not Your Job To Create Content For Google.
“Search Engine Optimization is not a legitimate form of marketing.....if someone charges you for SEO, you have been conned.”
So begins Derek Powazek's blog entry 'Spammers, Evildoers, and Opportunists.' Named one of the top 40 “Industry Influencers” of 2007, and ex-member of the HotWired, Blogger and Technorati teams, Derek Powazek has posted a furious condemnation of what he calls the “new breed of con man.......the Search Engine Optimizer.”
Powazek's blog is split into three sections: the good advice, which he claims is “obvious,” the SEO techniques that are “poisoning the web” and “the one true way to generate traffic on the web, based on my own 14 years of hits and misses.”
The Good Advice
“Look under the hood of any SEO plan and you’ll find advice like this: make sure to use keywords in the headline, use proper formatting, provide summaries of the content, include links to relevant information. All of this is a good idea, and none of it is a secret. It’s so obvious, anyone who pays for it is a fool.” Derek Powazek.
Powazek define SEO's one and only goal as to secure a website “prominent placement in the search engine results” and, according to him, the most effective way to increase a site's search engine ranking, is Google bombing, or “blanket(ing) the web with link spam.” He claims that:
“99% of spam comments to blogs are these kind of links.......some hack into the blog templates themselves to insert links that are hidden from the readers of that blog, but visible to a Google crawler.” Derek Powazek.
Another possible way to “poison” Google's search engine ranking system Powazek discusses, involves creating programs to:
“grab expired domain names, automatically create websites, filling the pages with content stolen from RSS feeds, creating billions of bad results for users.” Derek Poazek.
Powazek warns that these quick SEO fixes, do not equal long term success.
“In the end, you’re sacrificing your brand integrity in a Faustian bargain for an increase in traffic that won’t last the month......if you’re tricking people into visiting your site, those visits are going to be bad experiences.” Derek Powazek.
He also warns journalists who are creating “legitimate content online” no to get “seduced” by SEO:
“It’s not your job to create content for Google. It’s their job to find the best of the web for their results. Your audience is your readers, not Google’s algorithm.” Derek Powazek.
Which brings his blog post to “the One True Way to get a lot of traffic on the web:
“Make something great. Tell people about it. Do it again.........And again. You’ll build a reputation for doing good work, meaning what you say, and building trust. It’ll take time. A lot of time. But it works. And it’s the only thing that does.” Derek Powazek.
Read the full post at Powazek's blog.