Wednesday 9 November 2011

Is SEO Dying?

The answer is YES. For people who don't know, "SEO" means search engine optimization. In practice it means creating a webpage that has a better chance of being found and listed highly by Google and the other search engines.

A lot of website builders use SEO. A lot of people teach SEO. It is big business and big business want SEO to remain important so they will talk it up. But it is artificial.  Google doesn't like artificial methods that gets a webpage noticed. It simply wants the best content and webpages of any kind to be on the first page of a search irrespective of how good the SEO is because Google is a business and its purpose is to find the best on the internet without qualification. I guess that is common sense except for one modern exception: Google have been accussed of biasing their search results to favour those that make Google more money! As at August 2020, this has resulted in an enquiry by the US government.

SEO is dead because it allows bad sites to get good Google listings. Google does not like that. If you use Google Blogger (Blogspot) the free website building application, you can ignore SEO completely and it has no detrimentally effect in respect of Google's search listing and that is all that matters.

Recently Google downgraded websites that were not from branded names (e.g. Yahoo, About and Wikipedia) and which were created using the best SEO techniques. This is another sign that Google is bypassing the SEO sites. It wants the best not the best SEO.

Yes, SEO is dying and the businesses built around SEO, of which there are hundreds of thousands, are dying too - gradually. It is the beginning of the process. Website owners are still propositioned by SEO businesses but they are dying out too. They realise that their time is up. Google has always punished those who overdo SEO. It is called black hat SEO.

Google is the most important element of the internet. Please the company. Create a Blogger site. Work well. Write well. And make good content consistently and you can forget bloody stupid SEO! I feel I have to add an update. For many years now I have completely ignored SEO on the websites that I write for and manage. There has been no negative impact in terms of Google search results. In fact my experience tells me that if you overdo it, as I mention above, it has a negative impact on search results. It also slows down your writing and makes articles less natural and more artificial because you have to knit into the article the keyword. At best, you can add a little bit of SEO if you feel like tweaking the article but by and large I would ignore SEO in 2020. In fact it has been pretty much redundant for many years. Google has become too refined and sophisticated to be fooled by SEO. It doesn't need it. In the past it did but we're talking about 13 years ago. These are my observations based upon first-hand experience.

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