The dark side of SEO. What if the positioning in search engines was very different from what they tell us?

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What if the self-proclaimed experts in SEO (Search Engine Optimization) were no more than unscrupulous opportunists? It sounds a little loud, but it’s worth checking out the opinion on the subject of Derek Powazek, web expert who has worked in companies such as Blogger, Technorati and HP.

Powazek argues that the SEO discipline, also known as “search engine positioning,” is not a legitimate form of marketing, and that if someone charges you for it, it’s spoiling you. Why? Very simple: because according to this expert, the only valid tips on SEO are obvious and everyone knows them. The rest of the methods do not work, they only create problems and are poisoning the web.

The useful tips are obvious

The tips that work are those that everyone knows: use keywords in the content title, give the content an attractive format, include summaries or highlights and, of course, links to other relevant information.

All these are good ideas, but they are well known. That’s why Powazek says that paying for someone to tell you is stupid …

The other tips do not work

Occasionally, a SEO master appears who may have found a hole in Google’s algorithm, and who is willing to exploit it to increase traffic. But that “abnormal” traffic will not last long, since Google modifies the way to rate the pages every month, or even more often. So, assuming that this “brilliant” SEO technique worked, I would do it for just a couple of weeks.

It’s more. When Google re-indexes those pages and discovers that those responsible have acted in bad faith (for example, hiding links or keywords), it will make the positioning of the website fall. So the temporary gain will turn into a disaster. You will have sacrificed the integrity and recognition of your brand for nothing.

The dark side of SEO

The algorithm of Google is based, mainly, on the links. Therefore, the most effective way to succeed is to get a lot of links pointing to your page from as many websites as possible. It is best to point, also, from specific keywords in your field of activity. This is called “bombing Google” (Google bombing).

That’s why SEO cheats use robots, third-world labor, and zombie computers – enclave – to fill the web with spam / junk links. The proof is that 99% of the comments junk blogs are originated in this way. As you can imagine, the purpose of these links is not the blog readers -to whom they contribute nothing- but Google.

These cheats are behind attacks on blog services like Word press or Blogger, etc. Some even get into the templates of blogs to embed links that remain hidden from readers, but visible to the Google crawler.

They build programs to get domain names that have expired, with them they create websites in an automated way, and they fill their pages using stolen content through the RSS feed of other blogs. It’s like a game on the hunt for the link. A miserable game, because it takes advantage of those who try to create quality content.

The worst result of these dark practices is that many bloggers and website creators are seduced by the dark side of SEO, and end up focusing on creating content for Google instead of writing for their readers. That makes the quality and interest of the content go down, and that the websites are less attractive for advertisers.

The key is to create for the user, not for Google

It is something that we forget, and that we must take into account: your job is not to create content for Google. On the contrary, it is Google’s job to find the best content on the web to show it in its results. So your audience is your readers, not the Google algorithm. Reaching your audience with good content is the only way.

And these are the tips that really work According to Powazek, these are the tips that work:

Do something that is very good. Tell people. Do it again That is all. Do something that you believe in, make it beautiful, take care of the details. If you can not generate traffic, it may not be good enough. Retry.

Talk about it to people. Start with your friends. Write a personalized message on Twitter, through email, on your own blog.

Tell it, yes, to people who really care about what you do.

Find the places where your potential customers meet and participate. Connect with them personally, not like a robot or a company.

Do it again. And another.

It will take time. But it works. According to Powazek, it’s the only thing that works.

You can consult the article Spammers, Evildoers, and Opportunists , published by Powazek in his blog.

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