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The Best SEO Tactic is to do Nothing at all?

Is simplicity the best way to go?

     

tomthumb2000

11:47 pm on Feb 17, 2005 (gmt 0)

10+ Year Member



I've been reading masses of opinions over the past few weeks and it strikes me that with so many conflicting opinions and contracditory evidence, what conclusions can the average webmaster draw?
It seems to me that the best tactic may be to just develop a site with plenty of good content, relevant titles, get the odp and yahoo listing and leave it at that.
I've seen plenty of sites developed in notepad reach the top of their SERPS without ever requesting a link or giving more than a relevant handful out.
I can accept that there exist webmasters and companies with genius techies and a hard-wroking team of web promoters who can get results. But for the average webmaster is his time not best spent in developing a good site? Especially when no one can agree on what works anyway?
Maybe I'm just naive...

freeflight2

3:35 am on Feb 23, 2005 (gmt 0)

10+ Year Member



viral marketing delivers here 100 to 150 times more traffic than SEO traffic, both are in the 'M's pvs/mo.
Instead of worrying about SEs I am watching my users closely, especially when it comes to have them refer new users to the site.

sparticus

3:45 am on Feb 23, 2005 (gmt 0)

10+ Year Member



Google doesn't publish a list of webmaster guidelines for no reason. If you adhere to their rules, include lots of content that users will appreciate and (most importantly) want to link to, and stick to W3C guidelines I don't think you can go wrong.

mfishy

3:53 am on Feb 23, 2005 (gmt 0)

WebmasterWorld Senior Member 10+ Year Member



Google doesn't publish a list of webmaster guidelines for no reason. If you adhere to their rules, include lots of content that users will appreciate and (most importantly) want to link to, and stick to W3C guidelines I don't think you can go wrong.

This is the second best post of the year. Second of course to Mr. Ploppy. :)

blaze

4:05 am on Feb 23, 2005 (gmt 0)

WebmasterWorld Senior Member 10+ Year Member




Google doesn't publish a list of webmaster guidelines for no reason. If you adhere to their rules, include lots of content that users will appreciate and (most importantly) want to link to, and stick to W3C guidelines I don't think you can go wrong.

Rrrriiight. That's why Google, Yahoo, or MSN are completely devoid of search engine spam.. errr...

I think the sheer presence of so much search engine spam is an indisputable indication of the power of black hat over the search engines.

Until true AI gets built into these engines (a possibility I do not discount), or anonyminity is removed from the internet (another possibility I do not discount) black hat SEO will always be a very powerful and profitable technique.

cabbie

4:40 am on Feb 23, 2005 (gmt 0)

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>> Mr Ploppy :)
>>..If you adhere to their rules,..<<<

And Ye call yourself Spartacus!? :)

"...Spartacus and his companions sought to break the bonds of their own grievous oppression. There is no sign that they were motivated by ideological considerations.."
[vroma.org...]

>>...black hat SEO will always be a very powerful and profitable technique.

Even with AI, if there is a right way of doing something, surely there is always going to be a quicker smarter way of doing it.

nippi

4:46 am on Feb 23, 2005 (gmt 0)

WebmasterWorld Senior Member 10+ Year Member



ok everyone

PLease from now on do no seo.

don't ensure your content is written well(this is also seo) don't get other sites to recommend you, don't even lodge with search engines.

The floor will be wiped with you

buckworks

5:03 am on Feb 23, 2005 (gmt 0)

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



Black hat can indeed be powerful and profitable, at least in the short term, but it doesn't follow that white hat is not.

The real point of dispute is this:

Whiter than white is not going to work beyond low ambition

White hat tactics can work well in areas that reach far, far beyond the search engines, and white has the significant advantage of being more durable.

"Build something real" has different dynamics than black hatters are used to, but remember this:

You can't assume that just because you're ahead of someone in the search engines, you're ahead of them at the bank.

suidas

5:05 am on Feb 23, 2005 (gmt 0)

10+ Year Member



Let me see if I can focus this discussion by asking the following:

IF you pay intelligent and synthetic attention to both the SEO and content advice of:

(1) Google's advice
(2) Mr. Tabke's major posts
(3) Kent's SEO for Dummies
(4) whatever second tier material you like (eg., the last chapter of Google Hacks--by Brett?--Thurrow's Seach Engine Visibility, etc.)

AND you are interested in long-term, sustainable results,

THEN how much more is there really to learn?

steveb

6:23 am on Feb 23, 2005 (gmt 0)

WebmasterWorld Senior Member steveb is a WebmasterWorld Top Contributor of All Time 10+ Year Member



"I'm sure MSN or Yahoo doesn't do any search engine optimization."

Yahoo was advertising for SEOs a few months back.

And anyone who doesn't assume that the billion dollar companies will be ruling all sorts of serps at some point down the line doesn't understand basic capitalism and commerce. Millions are dollars are available to be made today because many of the largest companies have SEO capabilities ranging from haphazard to aggressively moronic.

howiejs

6:40 am on Feb 23, 2005 (gmt 0)

WebmasterWorld Senior Member 10+ Year Member



Some funny posts in this one . . .

Just remember Google / etc change their minds all the time - sometimes you need to hang out and just see what happens.

Launch a site, get some links - move on to the next site. Go back and check every now and then and focus on the sites that are getting traction / attention from the SEs.

I believe in this day and age you need to quickly put a whole bunch of things out there at once and see what sticks.

The biggest mistake I have made (and I make a good number of them) is not launching the dozen+ domains I picked up early last year with at least a basic page or two - to start "aging" the sites.

Wow this has all become really interesting again

SlyOldDog

7:43 am on Feb 23, 2005 (gmt 0)

WebmasterWorld Senior Member 10+ Year Member



Brett knew when he posted this topic on the front page it would bring out the old discussion between big content site owners and people who reverse engineer the SEs.

Me, I don't see black and white. I see ROI. If big sites are the way to go I will do it. Right now small sites are vogue but the tide is turning.

I have seen one SE spammer buying up content sites and paying up to $500,000 for them. That's a sure sign that things are changing.

nuevojefe

7:45 am on Feb 23, 2005 (gmt 0)

WebmasterWorld Senior Member 10+ Year Member



I believe in this day and age you need to quickly put a whole bunch of things out there at once and see what sticks.

I agree. I can't imagine sticking to the *exact same strategy over and over. For those that have one site, well, I just can't imagine that. This is of course coming from someone who relies heavily on se traffic for his projects success.

Trying multiple things is necessary IMO to improve upon your core strategies and maitain sustainability during the search engines' various algo shifts.

Unfortunately even the white hat stuff of this discussion can take nosedives under certain algorithmic sways.

markd

9:33 am on Feb 23, 2005 (gmt 0)

WebmasterWorld Senior Member 10+ Year Member



I think you have echoed a sentiment I have been expressing (not very well!) in other threads.

That producing a site which, in some way shape or form, tries to match the black art of LSI/LSA (until of course the practitioners of this move the goal posts) and other 'designer SERPS' could result in a 'human unfriendly' site.

Whilst you are trying to get the fine art of on page content which sets up a 'house of cards' with 'themes', 'information pyramids' etc. the poor unfortunates who actually find your site get an information resource which requires a 'Rosetta Stone' to discipher your core info.

This is to say nothing about the SEM client, who has just about grasped the principals of 'Site Match', 'Trusted Feeds' etc., only to be told that they have to find time and budget to redevelop the content and structure of their site (yet again) to keep pace with the supposed results of 'update Allegra'. 'Allegra', more like 'AllAggro'.

I also feel that SE's which try to be 'too clever' in producing 'designer SERPS' which require a PhD in computer science to see why they are relevant to your search are also in danger of alienating their core market - The Average Searcher.
I am all for getting rid of annoying, irrelevant spam, but don't throw the baby out with the bathwater.

Of course, all of this doesn't help those of us who try to make a living out of ligitimate, 'white hat' search engine placement, but maybe it's time to put more tools in our bag...?

claus

11:54 am on Feb 23, 2005 (gmt 0)

WebmasterWorld Senior Member 10+ Year Member



Please don't make this thread one of those annoying debates about hat color. It's of no use to anyone. We all have different risk profiles, perhaps even for different markets and/or sites/clients/whatever, so keep it there. We all pay our bills somehow, the rest is just noise.

That said:

I dont trust search engines to find my site on its own no matter how good I think it is.I cannot trust them to provide me an income.I game them for everything I got.

Cabbie, i seem to recall that those industries that you're in are not the mainstream web. Of course you have to follow the "rules" there (play the game) in order to get any return from your portfolio. No problem. Now, for the average webmaster the situation is a bit different. There's a whole lot of reasons to put up a website or two and frankly speaking a whole lot of webmasters are very well helped by doing very basic stuff and sticking to that.

Nowadays i trust that "they" will find my website. Specifically i trust that Google will find it, almost instantly. What i don't trust is that they will rank it instantly.

>> The Best SEO Tactic is to do Nothing at all?

That's basically what the SE Reps have always stated as their goal, ie. that they should do the work, the webmaster should not. Still, i'd say no, regardless of hat color. You can't just do nothing at all.

You need to put some content up, and you need to revisit the site at times. So, you'll have to put in work hours regardless of strategy. What you don't really need is constant tweaking of content that already performs well - unless of course your content is such a type that you have to tweak it in order for it to remain valuable.

>> Is simplicity the best way to go?

Definitely yes, and still regardless of hat color. I'd perhaps choose the word "focus" in stead, but simplicity and focus goes well together. Suidas put it really well:

I like to imagine Google's a very literal minded 6-year old.

Steveb,

And anyone who doesn't assume that the billion dollar companies will be ruling all sorts of serps at some point down the line doesn't understand basic capitalism and commerce. Millions are dollars are available to be made today because many of the largest companies have SEO capabilities ranging from haphazard to aggressively moronic.

As usual you use stronger wording than i would have, but as i've been in the business of teaching "big media" a trick or two for some years now, i can assure you that you're right. Imho, big corporates will be there before big media however - ironic as it seems.

philaweb

12:54 pm on Feb 23, 2005 (gmt 0)

10+ Year Member



Well, nomatter one's point of view, it sure is lots of fun to see a SEO strategy come true and succeed.

The post by Brett Tabke is still very much valid. I just read it for the first time (found this forum recently), but the described approach on website and SEO is very much the same as I have used since july last year with good results within a niche.

Q: When do you know you're site is being successful?
A: When it appears on swingdoor referral spam sites!

Yeah, good page rankings are good "credentials" for the SEO leeches out there.

otnot

1:38 pm on Feb 23, 2005 (gmt 0)

10+ Year Member



Once apon a time there were three little pigs.
One built his house out of straw.
One built his house out of sticks.
One built his house out of bricks.

For me personally I would rather hang my "gray" hat on a nail in my well constructed brick house.

gerd

1:54 pm on Feb 23, 2005 (gmt 0)

10+ Year Member



"I have to believe that the ultimate goal of a search engine is to reward good content"
LOL.............for all UK travel....webmasters (how we travel today? ...by air.
a 75.000 page that makes a fl...ght comparison is #1 for any fl...t to widget ...or cheap fl...ght to widget
.....hey guys what's goin on?
well i hope the guy enjoy the as long as alegra runs with cheap flights to Munich.........

irishaff

2:37 pm on Feb 23, 2005 (gmt 0)

10+ Year Member



I havent heard " If you build it they will come " since some Kevin Costner film...

The twelve steps have their place in an SEO strategy , but are not sufficent on their own. Rather a guideline which other activities must complement. Many of my competitors are good people with good products but they dont practice any form of SEO and now there is a lot of junk between number 1 ( me ) and them in all the competitive keywords I work with.

No need to SEO , sorry but thats naive.

JerryOdom

2:53 pm on Feb 23, 2005 (gmt 0)

10+ Year Member



I have to believe that the ultimate goal of a search engine is to reward good content

Wrong. The ultimate goal of a search engine is to make money.

Also, I agree that building one page at a time and re-hashing the same strategy month after month is not a viable strategy.

inwaaaytoodeep

3:17 pm on Feb 23, 2005 (gmt 0)

10+ Year Member



The best SEO tactic is to not tell nobody at all - FORUMS, FRIENDS, COMPETITORS or ANYONE!

Take risks only if you know how to workaround if it goes pear.

Doing nothing is just stupid. Unless you have a full time job already.

A thread like this will make SE's smile and that's about all.

inwaaaytoodeep

lgn1

4:15 pm on Feb 23, 2005 (gmt 0)

WebmasterWorld Senior Member 10+ Year Member



Im using the do nothing tactic. After allegra, I was in the double digit pages. Now after 3 weeks of doing nothing, I am in page 2 and 3 for my keywords. I figure after another week or two of doing nothing I should be back in the top 10.

Now if I was doing SEO techniques during this time, I would be thinking that SEO was improving my results which it is not.

I suggest that everybody take a month off of SEO and concentrate on content instead.

Imagine how many pages of content you could have created instead of reading the 5000 message Allegra sob story.

philaweb

4:28 pm on Feb 23, 2005 (gmt 0)

10+ Year Member



I have only optimized twice since july and now rank number 1 in several two worded searched with a niche website. I could optimize more and end up in top 10 for single worded searches.

Optimizing after a while is necessary for me since I'm learning new stuff all the time. I even found some nuggets in Brett Tabke's post. We're not all at the same level in this game and I'm merely a noob, still. ;)

Whether one chooses to disclose strategies or not - well, some people are believers, others are not. Some people like to add and detract by their own, and the truth is often the last thing believed anyway.

oddsod

4:48 pm on Feb 23, 2005 (gmt 0)

WebmasterWorld Senior Member 10+ Year Member



If SEOs think that SEs want SEOed pages or that SEs give SEOed pages higher ranks in their SEs...

But if SEs don't like SEOs and are constantly working to keep their SE free of SEOed stuff - like by imposing OOPs - and/or otherwise working to separate the SEO pages from the non-SEOed pages in an attempt to keep their SE useful to SE users....

Then doesn't it make sense to note what all SEOs are doing and do just the opposite?

Just a thought. :)

cabbie

5:47 pm on Feb 23, 2005 (gmt 0)

WebmasterWorld Senior Member 10+ Year Member



>>>..What i don't trust is that they will rank it instantly.<<
Sory Claus, this is what I meant.I don't trust them to rank my sites even for their own name.I was looking for a site for my daughter about a well known australian kids show called HiFive.
Its always been no#1 or 2 for the term "Hifive".Now I cannot find it even using the terms "hifive australia" "hifive kids", "hifive kids australia".
This site happens to be a subdomain of msn.com.au so even the best credentialled sites go missing.

Kirby

6:47 pm on Feb 23, 2005 (gmt 0)

WebmasterWorld Senior Member 10+ Year Member



Doing nothing or doing little has worked for one of my sites for 3 years now. It bounced around a bit for a few days during Florida, then came right back to the top and has survived with great rankings ever since.

With Allegra, this site has dropped a spot or two, but nothing major. What is happening that has my full attention and could negatively impact me is the slow, but consistent upward move by the types of companies steve mentioned.

Sitting back and doing nothing worked for quite sometime, but the competition was doing nothing as well. Now that the big boys are starting to see the light and have moved into my turf with guns blazing, being proactive is a must if I am to continue to succeed.

IMHO, doing nothing only works if that is the status quo with your competition as well.

np2003

8:04 pm on Feb 23, 2005 (gmt 0)

10+ Year Member



Yeah if you're trying to get top keywords for something like "n00b" the best seo tactic is to do nothing but if trying to target other competitive words I don't think this is a smart move because your competition is working hours every day gaining new links, building link partnerships, staying ahead of the latest news.

And for those saying "I didn't do anything except make great content and I've got top positions". Well that's probably because the term doesnt have much competition, I bet with a little bit of SEO, your competitor could topple your spot.

paybacksa

8:11 pm on Feb 23, 2005 (gmt 0)

WebmasterWorld Senior Member 10+ Year Member



Yes, that is absolutely correct. Just make good content and "set it and forget it". Absolutely. Best advice ever.

What a waste of time most of this other stuff can be, only to suddenly change overnight. Sometimes it seems like a scam designed to keep SEO consultants employed.

Just make good content, set it out, and keep making more good content. Like the experts here are saying.

You should probably also make it pretty enough to get people to want to visit it, and link to it, instead of wasting time trying to understand whether H1 or H3 is better for a search engine spider. Learn to build your navigation in Flash for example, and people will actually enjoy using your site more. Spend your time keeping up with the latest technologies to please your visitors, and you'll do just fine, right?

Sound advice.

UnderTheRadar

10:24 pm on Feb 23, 2005 (gmt 0)

10+ Year Member



Freshness vs. SEO
I have several sites that indeed have done very well by being left alone after initial SEO work. However, I have seen site effectiveness suffer in SE results by ignoring fresh site content. Lesson learned...build a solid content rich site, with clear easy navigation and based upon SEO tips ...but continue to invest in new content. The fresh bot will be your friend. And why not...if you want stale content go to a library book, if you want current fresh content, go to the web. Stay fresh or die.
UTR

docbird

12:57 am on Feb 24, 2005 (gmt 0)

10+ Year Member



Started site last March, broadly following Brett's 26 steps, a major difference being less than page a day - partly as google sniffy about it (evidently sandboxed). Bounced up with Allegra, to google results as I'd have anticipated based on content, links in; so seems best to continue as before, but I've more encouragement to add pages.

Another, older site, I left pretty much unchanged; sailed thro Allegra.

Neither in zones where black hats evidently congregate. Tho a tiny sample, results bear out main conclusions in this thread (maybe didn't need to continue beyond post #2!)

buckworks

1:13 am on Feb 24, 2005 (gmt 0)

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



You should probably also make it pretty enough to get people to want to visit it, and link to it, instead of wasting time trying to understand whether H1 or H3 is better for a search engine spider

Understanding the use of Hx tags is not a waste of time. A good grasp of semantic structure is valuable for both SEO purposes and intelligent content development. If you stayed awake during the classes in school where they taught you how to make essay outlines, you likely already know three-quarters of what you need to know about Hx tags.

This 80 message thread spans 3 pages: 80
 

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