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Nobody talks about getting #1 now?
has the focus changed?
wanna_learn

10+ Year Member



 
Msg#: 3239760 posted 6:46 pm on Feb 1, 2007 (gmt 0)

2 years back all the SEO forums were full of how to top the charts by playing fair SEO tricks and also by dirtly tricks. Looking at the hot topics being discussed in past few months its quite clear that focus has been changed to
1) How to defend site from being kicked outta Google
2) Other problems with sites like supplemental page, hijacking, dupelicate content etc etc.
3) Genearal disussion about quality of results

Have we lost the game to Google? Are we assuming that it has been almost impossible to be certan that YES I can take my site to top?

or the veterans know the secret but nobody shares?

 

grandpa

WebmasterWorld Senior Member 10+ Year Member



 
Msg#: 3239760 posted 8:30 am on Feb 4, 2007 (gmt 0)

Many people feel like they have a specific problem and end up getting very nearsighted when asking questions and looking for answers.

Indeed ;-) My most recent big problem was a result of my own nearsightedness. I could give you excuses too.. but that's all they are, and they're no substitute for doing real work. Eventually I got the message, again, and went back to work. Some of us are hard of hearing or forgetful, too.

Over the last few years the focus has changed. For us, it began with the Florida debacle, and the introduction of advertising as a means to obtain traffic. In a sense, today it's a lot easier to get traffic, if that's all you want. Just go buy it and be done. But if you're looking for sustainable results then it still takes real work. Being above the fold is worth far more than an advertising campaign.

Advertising has actually reduced the 'pressure' or the urgency to build a site to its peak of perfection. If I have a site that produces thru advertising then why spend more time on it when I can build more sites just like it? Frankly, I think this is a common attitude. Think about it, the discussions about how to get to #1 will have tapered off about the same time webmasters had a new tools to reach their audience. The Google forums here are full of messages of people trying to maximize their benefit from those new tools of the trade.

percentages

WebmasterWorld Senior Member 10+ Year Member



 
Msg#: 3239760 posted 9:07 am on Feb 4, 2007 (gmt 0)

>Have we lost the game to Google?

Yes...that is the simple answer!

>or the veterans know the secret but nobody shares?

People have shared too much here IMHO! I plead guilty to that charge as well!

2001....Getting #1 spot wasn't much of a challenge for a large number of terms, getting 29 of the top 30 listings was the thing to be doing!

2005/6/7......Getting any listings in the top 10 for a wide variety of terms is much more difficult.

Should we share specifics here.....absolutely not! I know I've posted thoughts on how to beat Google and weeks later Google have thwarted them!

Coincidence? I think not, after several occurrences!

I don't much care now, as I don't need the money. But the concept of sharing specifics to help others in different industries on a public forum is folly for those that do IMHO!

If I had to do it all over again today I think I would take the approach of finding a few like minded SEO's at an event such as PubCon and keeping our secrets to ourselves.

At the very least not posting those secrets on forums frequented by the enemy.....which is not the competition, but, the SE's!

shogun_ro

5+ Year Member



 
Msg#: 3239760 posted 9:24 am on Feb 4, 2007 (gmt 0)

Should we share specifics here.....absolutely not! I know I've posted thoughts on how to beat Google and weeks later Google have thwarted them!

and
At the very least not posting those secrets on forums frequented by the enemy.....which is not the competition, but, the SE's!

Right.
The problem is they, veterans, don't share those secrets even if you ask for them in private messages.

buckworks

WebmasterWorld Administrator buckworks us a WebmasterWorld Top Contributor of All Time 10+ Year Member



 
Msg#: 3239760 posted 3:24 pm on Feb 4, 2007 (gmt 0)

Stop trying to "beat" Google.

Focus on giving them the kind of site and building the kind of web presence that the algos ought to be trying to favor!

Don't fake quality ... BE quality ... it's easier and more sustainable in the long run.

sugarrae

WebmasterWorld Senior Member 10+ Year Member



 
Msg#: 3239760 posted 4:45 pm on Feb 4, 2007 (gmt 0)

It's definitely still possible to win with either the long term approach or the short term approach. Anyone who thinks it isn't is fooling themselves. But, I think if you're aiming for longevity, then aiming for marketing a site outside of the search engines, while keeping the things the engines look for in mind will help a site launched today rank and still be ranking three years from now.

Lots of things people say are taken out of context or too literally as well:

"add more unique content"

There is a difference between conceptually unique content and literally unique content. Adding the former is a long term strategy, adding the latter is a short term strategy.

"get more links"

There is a difference between quantity and quality. Quantity will propel you early on (provided you earn trust in addition to the quantity - either via buys or organically developed links). Quality is what will *keep* the ranks you obtain for the long term.

"don't buy links"

Well, bullchit. It still works, provided you do it smartly. If someone can tell at first glance of your backlinks you're buying links, then you're not doing it smartly. Period. Secondly, buying links that bring real traffic (in addition to those bringing you ranking benefits) can ultimately help you develop organic links, providing you have a great product, service or conceptually unique content.

"reciprocal linking doesn't work"

Again, more bullchit. And again, provided you are doing it smartly, it can help a site. Older sites can get away with more than newer sites. Reciprocal linking cannot be the sole strategy for a brand new domain that wants to rank within the next year. So, don't assume because you're competitors from 2002 are surviving solely on reciprocals that you're brand new domain can too. That said, don't assume because recips can't be your *only* strategy, that they aren't part of a good *overall* strategy.

Just a few of the more common misconceptions/things taken too literally I see. Regardless of what you're aiming for (huge short term ranks that may disappear in a few months or slowly built long term ranks that hopefully will remain for years), it's still possible with Google and tons of webmasters are still doing it.

My two cents...

MsHuggys

10+ Year Member



 
Msg#: 3239760 posted 4:54 pm on Feb 4, 2007 (gmt 0)

I think those of us who have been #1 for many years, have taken alot of our time to help others. But, in this world, unless you deal one on one with a webmaster, you have no idea who you are dealing with.

If we post in this forum, it can be our competitors we are helping. Only recently, did a competitor email me wanting to know how I got to be #1. He was blatantly open about it. If they will email me directly, how many hundreds just lurk in the forums trying to figure out how to beat me (or their nitch competitors) at the game?

But, going beyond the surface, getting to #1 is not something you can simply put into a few words. It is a complex formula of 'all the right things' done correctly, in a specific order, over time. People come to me with a train wreck, thrown on the web in hurry with no insight what so ever, and then want a few quick tips to get to #1. It isn't going to happen.

Everytime that happens, I wish they had contacted me BEFORE they built a site. That is where it all begins, and where quick results can be pocketed. It is hard to salvage a train wreck, though I have done it, it is not my favorite thing to do. Now, I don't even consider the train wrecks. I just don't have the time for it. Though honestly, I do enjoy going to view them, to see what knowledge might be gained from them.

Moreover, to help others means taking time from our businesses, to lend a hand to another business. Since most of us are mom and pops, giving free help could actually cost us thousands of dollar in annual revenue, from not spending time on our sites. I am working 30 sites. Which is why I don't post here often. I come in browse the topics, to stay updated on the engines and revenue programs, then skip away to go about running my business.

Before I get alot of hate mail, I have helped hundreds of busineses in the past seven years for no cost or low cost, having done more than my fair share of charity work on the web, while working on my own sites enough to support my family. In the seven years before that, I spent all my time learning. I hope to spent the next seven years just reaping the rewards of my hard work.

I think I have held up my end of the bargin in an industry that was built on ethics and the spirit of free access and education. To this date, I still offer free advertising to many businesses, and always will. But, there will always be those people, that when they receive a free gift, still think it is not enough. This is the reason I have severely limited who I would consider helping in the future. It should have never become a headache, and yet because of widespread greed, it did.

Sweet Cognac

10+ Year Member



 
Msg#: 3239760 posted 6:11 pm on Feb 4, 2007 (gmt 0)

Three years ago we were #1. Now, because of the billions of new web pages on the internet, spammers, ebay, wiki, amazon, algos, etc. We are lucky to be above the fold.

But we knew 3 yrs. ago this was going to happen, and prepared for it.

wanna_learn

10+ Year Member



 
Msg#: 3239760 posted 6:20 pm on Feb 4, 2007 (gmt 0)

"Focus on giving them the kind of site and building the kind of web presence that the algos ought to be trying to favor!"

Everybody would like to do that may be willing to give 100% on that, point is what actually algos want at specific point of time? I think here we reach at the core definition of SEO..... which is the goal of all discussions in this forum and which is why this forum exists.

lfgoal

5+ Year Member



 
Msg#: 3239760 posted 6:55 pm on Feb 4, 2007 (gmt 0)

Ditto to everything sugarrae said (though, personally I am leery of reciprocals simply because the quality site you exchange links with today may go blackhat without your knowledge 2 years later).

"Three years ago we were #1. Now, because of the billions of new web pages on the internet, spammers, ebay, wiki, amazon, algos, etc. We are lucky to be above the fold.
But we knew 3 yrs. ago this was going to happen, and prepared for it."

Fantastic piece of advice. I made my own forecasts a couple years back. They all came true and, luckily, I had already prepared for them.

europeforvisitors



 
Msg#: 3239760 posted 7:03 pm on Feb 4, 2007 (gmt 0)

Everybody would like to do that may be willing to give 100% on that, point is what actually algos want at specific point of time? I think here we reach at the core definition of SEO..... which is the goal of all discussions in this forum and which is why this forum exists.

Actually, everyone does not want to do that; if everyone did, we wouldn't see millions of keyword-driven pages that have little if any value to users.

I also think it's fair to say that content creation does fall under the heading of "SEO," since it's obvious that much so-called content is created only to attract listings in (and traffic from) search engines. So it isn't unreasonable to discuss an organic method as an alternative to traditional try-to-second-guess-the-algorithm SEO techniques.

buckworks

WebmasterWorld Administrator buckworks us a WebmasterWorld Top Contributor of All Time 10+ Year Member



 
Msg#: 3239760 posted 8:06 pm on Feb 4, 2007 (gmt 0)

point is what actually algos want at specific point of time?

Note that I recommend developing the kind of site "that the algos OUGHT TO BE trying to favor."

That's quite different from chasing the algo flavor of the month.

ronin

WebmasterWorld Senior Member 10+ Year Member



 
Msg#: 3239760 posted 11:25 am on Feb 5, 2007 (gmt 0)

Completely agree with buckworks. I do my best to subscribe to the view that SEs should chase websites, not the other way around.

As far as I am concerned my site should be such a valuable resource that any SE which does not include my site somewhere near the top of SERPS for queries in my niche will look deficient as a result.

So I stick with on-page SEO 101, validate my mark-up, take into account usability and accessibility issues, ensure that my site works cross-platform and above all make sure my site is the single best and most comprehensive resource in its niche.

Then, if Google doesn't put me at number one (most of the time it does) then I know there's something wrong at the Google end of things. Not my end. And it's something they have to fix. Not me.

pageoneresults

WebmasterWorld Senior Member pageoneresults us a WebmasterWorld Top Contributor of All Time 10+ Year Member



 
Msg#: 3239760 posted 11:30 am on Feb 5, 2007 (gmt 0)

So I stick with on-page SEO 101, validate my mark-up, take into account usability and accessibility issues, ensure that my site works cross-platform and above all make sure my site is the single best and most comprehensive resource in its niche.

That's the bottom line, isn't it? :)

"If you build it, they will eventually come."

rekitty

5+ Year Member



 
Msg#: 3239760 posted 2:23 pm on Feb 5, 2007 (gmt 0)

Fantastic thread, thanks everyone.

Note that I recommend developing the kind of site "that the algos OUGHT TO BE trying to favor."

Absolutely! It's always a moving target. You need to aim for where the search engines *will* be, not where they are currently.

Here's my tidbit: Search engines should be measuring how satisfied a user is after clicking through a SERP. Do users stay a while on the site, for example, or do they hit the back button and go away. If they stay a while, then that site *should* be higher on the page than the junk site where everybody immediately hits the back button.

I've seen some recent evidence of a page rising in the SERPs after improving the usability of the page. It was a javascript enhancement that improved the user experience but the search engines never saw. Just a coincidence? I'm not so sure...

flyerguy

10+ Year Member



 
Msg#: 3239760 posted 9:39 pm on Feb 5, 2007 (gmt 0)

Well I got to page 2 of a hardcore keyphrase after spending $1500. Too bad the site it was aimed for has since switched the subject matter, but truly:

-IF-

you want to advance in SERPS.

-PAY-

link monkeys from unnamed countries with excellent curries

-TO DO THE HARD WORK-

and get you links on various sites.

123 simple. Your ROI is your own deal, but there is SEO in a condensed version.

karmov

10+ Year Member



 
Msg#: 3239760 posted 2:20 pm on Feb 6, 2007 (gmt 0)

It's always a moving target.

It's really not though. The search engines generally want to give users the best webpage based on what they're looking for. That should always hold true because it's so fundamental to their model. It's not a moving target, and every algo change is generally an attempt to move closer to this goal.

That's why veteran sites survive and persist. When you start with your goals aligned with the SE goals (rather than goals like "gets lots of backlinks", "uses relevant linktext", etc...), they're going to move ever closer to ranking you better.

wanna_learn

10+ Year Member



 
Msg#: 3239760 posted 7:06 pm on Feb 7, 2007 (gmt 0)

"So I stick with on-page SEO 101, validate my mark-up, take into account usability and accessibility issues, ensure that my site works cross-platform and above all make sure my site is the single best and most comprehensive resource in its niche."

BUT

ALAS!

in majority of cases they are simply beaten by i-buy-links-but-zero-content.com kinda sites or may be I-Copied-your-content-and-am-number1-now.com likes.

I think thousands of such instances could be posted here.

europeforvisitors



 
Msg#: 3239760 posted 7:54 pm on Feb 7, 2007 (gmt 0)

Here's my tidbit: Search engines should be measuring how satisfied a user is after clicking through a SERP. Do users stay a while on the site, for example, or do they hit the back button and go away. If they stay a while, then that site *should* be higher on the page than the junk site where everybody immediately hits the back button.

If only it were that simple. Let's say that I enter a Google search for "define whatsit." I'm taken to a page at daves-dictionary.org, see a one-line defintion that says "WHATSIT: n. synonym for 'widget.'" I leave almost immediately. Does that mean I wasn't satisfied with the information? On the contrary: I got exactly what I wanted, and daves-dictionary.org deserves its #1 ranking.

For a review of a new professional digital camera, a different expectation might apply. Ditto for a search on "history of the catholic church" or "war and peace complete text."

willybfriendly

WebmasterWorld Senior Member 10+ Year Member



 
Msg#: 3239760 posted 8:24 pm on Feb 7, 2007 (gmt 0)

Experts share their wisdom, yet the layman wants to reject it. Nothing new.

The secret to a top ranking is to build a site that deserves top rankings. The secret to traffic is to have steady traffic from many streams/queries.

1000 visitors from one search term, or 1 visitor from each of 1000 search terms. Same traffic numbers. Which is more stable?

In the end, those thousand terms producing one visitor each are a whole lat easier to rank for. And if you are like me, you may discover terms that you never thought of produce a whole lot of visitors while remaining very non-competitive.

Tedster's words should not be rejected lightly.

WBF

Connors

5+ Year Member



 
Msg#: 3239760 posted 8:31 pm on Feb 7, 2007 (gmt 0)

If you use website publishing software that takes care of all the site optimization stuff for you, you're freed to write more and write well. Blogging software usually does the trick.

Getting that top position is all about selecting the right keywords to target. Select ones that are too competitive, and you're out of luck. Select ones that no qualified traffic is on, then you're out of luck.

So, the secret 1+2 knock-out combo to getting top positions is selecting the right publishing platform and selecting the right keywords to target for your site. Keep it up, publishing and pushing out new pages every day, and your site will rise to the top across a broad array of terms.

wanna_learn

10+ Year Member



 
Msg#: 3239760 posted 4:04 pm on Feb 8, 2007 (gmt 0)

So do we infer AGAIN that Content is King and we just have to say it loud again?

or do we have scope of any LEGITIMATE tricks?

Thanks to all of you for sharing opinion

grandpa

WebmasterWorld Senior Member 10+ Year Member



 
Msg#: 3239760 posted 4:22 pm on Feb 8, 2007 (gmt 0)

Content has not been de-throned in the 3+ years that I've known him. Content is King. I added 800 words last night, and I'm feeling very confident that my new 'targets' will be met. The King has a very long reach into the web. Figure out what you're trying to reach and then do the things you need to do to get there. And once you've figured it out, what's left to talk about? And who else wants to listen? This thread couldn't sum it better if it was served on a silver platter with sliced toast and tea.

bregan

5+ Year Member



 
Msg#: 3239760 posted 5:53 pm on Feb 8, 2007 (gmt 0)

I am only now learning this stuff, after one year of toil and holy grail keyword-targeted SEO. Analytics persistently shows that my top keywords have brought in no more than 3 people per day each, but they add up over thousands of searches.

People search for the darndest things, and god bless 'em, cause that's likely the only traffic I'll ever see.

outland88

WebmasterWorld Senior Member 10+ Year Member



 
Msg#: 3239760 posted 6:57 pm on Feb 8, 2007 (gmt 0)

>I added 800 words last night, and I'm feeling very confident that my new 'targets' will be met.<

What actually does that mean?

The simple answer to the posterís original question is the focus of many threads on a variety of forums is no longer on really doing business on the Internet. The focus has really shifted to flooding search engines with Adsense pages.

Now just mentioning a minor trick to help a businessman gets transferred to a million Adsense pages. Voila, Google targets the minor tricks and you have all sorts of collateral damage. Meanwhile the commerce business is left trying to resurrect itself. On the other hand the schemer is churning out another web site on a subject he knew nothing about 10 minutes beforehand.

Bottom line is Googleís marketing schemes are king not content.

europeforvisitors



 
Msg#: 3239760 posted 7:51 pm on Feb 8, 2007 (gmt 0)

Now just mentioning a minor trick to help a businessman gets transferred to a million Adsense pages. Voila, Google targets the minor tricks and you have all sorts of collateral damage. Meanwhile the commerce business is left trying to resurrect itself. On the other hand the schemer is churning out another web site on a subject he knew nothing about 10 minutes beforehand.

A couple of years ago, the get-rich-quick crowd were churning out boilerplate affiliate sites, and legitimate sites were having to compete with those junk affiliate sites for search rankings.

If it isn't one thing, it's another. Same garbage, different bags.

grandpa

WebmasterWorld Senior Member 10+ Year Member



 
Msg#: 3239760 posted 4:22 am on Feb 9, 2007 (gmt 0)

What actually does that mean?

It means that I'm targeting some phrases in my niche that haven't yet received they attention they deserve - long tail.

It means I still look at how people find my site, and I focus some attention to improving that result - that I'm hoping to get another phrase popping up above the fold on a search.

It means that in spite of being number one for my niche keyword, there isn't time to sit back and relax.

It means that, in this context, that when enough people tell me that Content is King I need to always write better content.

Finally, it means that at the end of the day I can feel good about my efforts and that I expect, in time, to see a result from those efforts.

wanna_learn

10+ Year Member



 
Msg#: 3239760 posted 6:20 pm on Feb 9, 2007 (gmt 0)

"The simple answer to the posterís original question is the focus of many threads on a variety of forums is no longer on really doing business on the Internet. The focus has really shifted to flooding search engines with Adsense pages. "

Spot on!

DXL

WebmasterWorld Senior Member 10+ Year Member



 
Msg#: 3239760 posted 5:06 am on Feb 20, 2007 (gmt 0)

Getting the #1 spot in Google means less now that they've pushed natural results a foot down with maps and local results.

grandpa

WebmasterWorld Senior Member 10+ Year Member



 
Msg#: 3239760 posted 6:03 am on Feb 20, 2007 (gmt 0)

Getting the #1 spot in Google means less

Honestly? Being #1 has been putting butter on my bread for a couple of years. There IS now more competition, as you stated, with Local Search results, Froogle results, maps and who knows what else will pop up there. I may or may not be a typical searcher, but I tend to ignore those things unless they happen to be spot on. Usually, they aren't, and so I look at the real results, starting from #1.

I watch my stats, and I do see quite a few one-hit wonders visiting my site. I look at how they arrived at my site, and most often it is from a well placed result - not always #1, but usually above the fold. Being number one is a fantastic source of free traffic. It's up to me to convince those one-hit wonders to convert.

Getting to number one never meant more. Beside the traffic, it means I can afford to budget less for advertising. It means that every ounce of effort I made to get there was worth it. I have 4 more sites that I'm slowly pushing towards the top. If it meant any less for being there, I wouldn't bother...

iblaine

10+ Year Member



 
Msg#: 3239760 posted 5:56 pm on Feb 21, 2007 (gmt 0)

or the veterans know the secret but nobody shares?

SEO is a commodity. Years ago there were tricks used to get at the top. That's no longer the case...it's business like any other traditional marketing channel.

justablink

5+ Year Member



 
Msg#: 3239760 posted 6:23 pm on Feb 21, 2007 (gmt 0)

The orignal post by wanna learn asked have we lost the game to Google? or the veterans know the secret but nobody shares?

Lost the game to Google? I just spent the last hour on the phone with a Google account rep. Yes, we spend a lot of money with them. And it is quite clear G is in business to make money. They even are going to otimize one of our adgroups for us that is not doing as well as some others. G makes money, but my clients do too. The fact is, one of my clients rank in the top ten for hundreds of competitive terms. But we still work hard on optimizing the ONE BOX results (local listings and product listings before the organic results).

Veterans not sharing? In a public forum, anonymity creates sharing, albeit on a surface level only. If I'm going to share, and I do, I share on a surface level. The details are shared over a beer face to face.

The Secret. There is no one secret to SEO. On page factors, plenty of inbound links from trusted, same industry sites, and plenty content has worked and will continue to work.

Have we lost the game to Google?One of the latest SEO frontiers are the one box results; are you optimizing your feeds to Google base for your products, are you uploading them frequently? Are your local listings optimized over your competition? Google wants relevancy, and also wants paying customers, and with one box results, allow those willing to be at the top of organic results without paying.

So, get in the one box, have top organic results, and have a ppc bid. Advertising is all about impressions and quite frankly, I don't see my clients loosing to Google.
Justablink

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