Monday, October 30, 2006

Is SEO just a Fallacy? (Part I)

As I spend more and more time in money making forums, I see more and more people downplaying the importance of Search Engine Optimization. Does SEO really work or just a waste of your time?

As Google continues to change their organic website position algorithms, more and more people are becoming frustrated with the system and choosing to rely more on paid advertising rather than to optimize their website for high search engine position.

"SEO is a thing of the past."
"SEO has short-term benifits that cannot be maintained."
"There is no such thing as SEO!"

First of all, SEO DOES exist. Secondly, if you are not optimizing your website for search engine bots, you are severely limiting your sales potential as well as spending a lot of money on advertising such as Pay-Per-Click services like Google Adwords and Yahoo Overture. In time, I have experienced moments of first page organic search results and this has resulted in more than FOUR TIMES the sales for me. Not only that, but the traffic is extremely high in quality and it does not cost me a dime!

I think most online marketers would agree with these statements. But why do some of them bad mouth the idea of SEO? Mainly because most of these people do not know HOW to do it or can not maintain a good position. In my opinion, SEO is very real and you can do a lot to help position your own website into a top spot.

Trying to understand the Google algorithms is virtually impossible. Because a lot of people do not know WHAT it is, they assume that there is no way to optimize for it. That is a mistake! Just because people do not know WHAT it is, does not mean that we can not OBSERVE how it works. Of course, we as web developers cannot change the algorithm, but there are two ways that we can take advantage of how the system works.

1) Search Engine Optimization for your website. There are a number of ways that you can optimize your website to be more search engine bot friendly.

2) Develop the incoming links to your website. A large part of SEO is based on not only how many backlinks your website has, but who is linking to you (and HOW they are linking to you).

It is simple for me to throw out these two rather broad ways to optimize your search engine. The details on what exactly to optimize for will be saved for another article. In the meantime, I want to stress that it is a big mistake to ignore the importance of Search Engine Optimization for your online business. SEO can be the difference between a little extra cash and a million dollar business.

- Matthew Bredel

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