First, let me start by apologizing to the many webmasters or SEOs who read here frequently if my 'bluntness' has offended you ... My 'super blunt' statements about SEOs 'parroting' in a recent thread weren't to the majority of the (last I heard) 250,000+ members here, they were actually to the limited number who have found a way to 'extract money' from the 'masses of webmasters' by 'saying what webmastes want to hear' rather than really 'delving in' and talking about the reality of the situation.
I know my strong points aren't 'being super tactful' like tedster or anything along those lines, in any way, because I call things how I see them and don't 'hold back' or 'pull punches' very often, and if someone wants to argue what I think is a 'wrong position', unlike him, I don't just 'let it slide' (although sometimes I wish I did things more like he does, because he's incredible and way better than me in many ways), but the reason I post the way I do (especially recently) is to try and 'protect the masses' of webmasters I think are misled by those who are great at 'saying the right thing' or 'the popular thing' rather than saying 'the real thing', and there's a big difference, in my opinion.
In 2011, I posted in a thread Brett_Tabke started about how Google continued to say we should build sites like there are no search engines, which, to me means, and I quote (what I said back then):
So, paid links, web rings, reciprocal links, article submissions for links, directory submissions, forum link dropping, blog link dropping, reciprocal twitter follows and everything else they tell us not to do are really good ideas?
The point I've been trying to get across to most people who read here is: Your traffic from Google is likely dying, and, in my opinion, if you don't find another source(s), anywhere you can there may be a large number who rely on Google for a living in jeopardy.
Most of my posts aren't directed at those who really understand what's going on and how difficult things are likely to become, but rather to the rest, those (the majority in my opinion) whom I believe are 'kept in the dark' by what it seems to me many of 'upper level optimizers' say ... If you're not one of those optimizers who 'says the right thing' to keep making a buck OR you're not one of the people who don't see what's 'down the road' a bit, then my posts aren't directed at you.
The things I see 'on the way' are more 'crazy, seemingly senseless' updates that destroy people's livelihoods for no apparent reason, and updates to the rankings Google's people deny more often they made, because they didn't...
What I see coming, and have gotten out of threads here, is Google has moved to and is moving even more to machine learning and the more I read about 'updates and ranking fluctuations' they say they didn't make happen being reported, the more I think 'the day of most here is ending', because Google is headed toward machine learning and personalization, which means if your site only fits the 'profile' appealing to 1 in 10,000, even if it used to rank great, then you'll only show to 1 in 10,000 people ... And, unless your site is important enough to be searched for by name when it's not in the results any more, then how important was it in the first place for their perspective?
I don't and haven't been posting 'extremely' to 'be opinionated' or 'have a platform' or anything along those lines, I've been posting the way I do, because I've seen so many posts here over the years about how people lost Everything due to a change at Google it worries me about the future and I feel like at least giving people some type of warning, even though most would simply answer a question in 'black and white', because if I saw the things I do and the changes I see moving forward by Google and know the necessity of traffic for those who own and depend on sites, but said nothing to them, then I would blame myself for keeping my mouth shut.
So, hopefully this is not 'too much' or anything along those lines, because most of my posts are for you, if you're part of the majority I see coming on very tough times getting traffic from Google...
I don't for a second believe the 'tough times' will be due to your site being bad in general, but I think there's really a bunch of 'flux' in the future due to testing and unless you're a 'major brand' then I don't think you're immune, because to go the direction Google must be by attempting to provide 'the one right answer' a great deal of testing within the results and what visitors respond to best, individually, is required.
I honestly, really and truly don't post for me. I already know what I know and think what I think ... I post for those I hope to help, and if you're not one of the many I see having a tough time moving forward that I'm hoping to help with this and the rest of my posts, then my posts are really not for you, so please, don't be offended or anything along those lines, but if you're not 'way above average', then I personally believe you'll have a tough time moving forward, because as machine learning becomes more prevalent and the more personalized things become, the more your site will have to actually be really liked by visitors to continue ranking for many people.
It used to be who ever could 'manipulate the algo best' or 'get the most links with the right text' or even 'had the oldest site' would rank best, but those days are ending or have gone, so I hope you can find another source of traffic, because, if Google's goal is 'one right answer' for someone, even if they only get to 10, with the number of pages and sites possible to return for a query, yours better be one of the absolute best, according to other people, to continue showing...
I truly wish everyone here all the best, and thanks a bunch if you didn't put this post on your TL;DR list ... Hopefully someone will get something out of it.