The future of SEO – to be, or not to be?

Hamlet (free clip art)

Hamlet (free clip art)

Over the past several weeks I have been reading on a lot of self-proclaimed SEO and SERP people’s websites and I get the distinct impression that the future of SEO and SERP is going to be largely dependent on social interaction between the website and its readers. I have also gotten the distinct impression that the “blogroll” links that many blogs have will not be given any weight in the foreseeable future Google indexing algorithms.

So, what does that mean to me? First of all, I think that it means that a website should have an associated Facebook page. This is going to become more important down the road. Also Google Places, Google +1, and any other Google social thing has going on. After all, I think it only makes sense that Google is going to be favoring their products over any other. I think that it means that I might as well remove my blogroll widgets. All they are doing is taking up space on the blog. If a blog is a mature blog, that blogroll takes up valuable “real estate” (space) that would be better put to good use by putting in a tag cloud or a Facebook widget that displays an associated Facebook page or other Social Media product in use.

Additionally, it suggests to me that it would probably be a very good thing for businesses to incorporate a blog into their website. The blog would be a good place to dole out tips and perhaps run opinion polls. I think that in the spirit of showing “social interaction” that it would be appropriate for the blog to have comments enabled. When Google does its future indexing, if their robotic spiders find comments on the website I suspect that would make the Google spiders very happy. And I don’t know about you, but I want happy spiders, don’t you?

happy spider (free clip art)

happy spider (free clip art)

Now it is Facebook’s turn

A few days ago I wrote that I was participating in something that was called a Twitter and Facebook blast. I had no real idea how it worked, but a friend of mine suggested that I participate, telling me that it might help me in a variety of ways. Part of this was supposed to be about learning more about SEO and Social Marketing. And I went into this thing with the thought in the back of my head that if I were to participate in this type of activity with a website that already had page rank, that I might actually lose the page rank! So I decided to go ahead and experiment with this blog because it is already a page rank 0.

I have actually reaped some unexpected benefits here – I am being “friended” and “followed” and “liked” by other people who are bloggers, and I get to se their bios – and I am actually making REAL contacts with REAL people, and exchanging information and tips and I am finding this to be much more valuable than I expected it to be!

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JetPack statistics

Jet pack free clip art

Jet pack free clip art

Not very long ago I installed JetPack on my WordPress theme. Although I have had personal computers since the early 80′s, and being online since the Internet became available where I lived, I do not consider myself to be an expert on anything related to computers and the Internet. Even though I was the network administrator of the construction department of the Augusta Maine office of Verizon, and even though I was heavily involved in writing code with their programmers for designing the system used in the construction department, I know that there will always be new things to learn. One interesting thing about education is that the more I learn, the more I understand that there is a lot more “out there” TO learn!

A couple of days ago, I did a presentation at a networking group about how bloggers can help a website with their marketing efforts. I thought that the presentation was well received, and was hopeful that the information that I shared would be useful to them in the future.

So anyway, imagine my surprise when a couple of days later I received some anonymous but very critical comments on this blog  about some of my thoughts on the next update.

These critical comments were delivered by someone too cowardly to provide a real email address so there is no way to attempt any form of civilized discourse. Apparently the person who posted the comments is feeling a sense of competition; feeling  threatened by me in some way.

running soldier free clip art

Running soldier free clip art

Since in the past my comments have all been from spammers trying to get me to approve their comment so that they can get my Google juice to their site, (although I have no Google juice yet from this site) this leads me to believe that this person made an attempt to look me up personally.  No real effort has been made on my part to get the word out that this blog even exists; it is such a new blog that it really is not worth marketing yet. So I find the timing of these hateful, critical comments very interesting.

The JetPack statistics have been instrumental in my detective work about where the hate is coming from. I am impressed with all of the features that it has! I still have a lot to learn, and I am looking forward to learning as much of it as I can! And although I would have hoped for some nice comments on my page resulting from someone reading my posts, I am really quite happy to learn that there really is someone out there that is actually taking the time to read through some of my posts and try to pick them apart! That can’t hurt my traffic stats, can it?

SEO Hitler and hats

Installment 1 of an opinion series by Linda Bradshaw about SEO and blogging

Adolf Hitler free clip art image

Adolf Hitler free clip art image

One of my favorite classes in college was sociology – the study of society. I like to think that we, as bloggers, are members of a fairly new society. One definition of a society I recently found online is: “An organization or association of persons engaged in a common profession, activity, or interest.”

Much like any society, each group within that society tends to prefer the company of other people in the same group. Sometimes people find themselves in one group or the other without even realizing that they have choices that they can make to change from one group to another. Rather like “gang” activity on the city streets. If you are born in one area, you are surrounded by the “Purple” gang and if you join a gang, it will be the “Purple” gang, and if you know what is good for you then you will not even talk to a member of a different gang. Now I’m not implying that bloggers are gang bangers, but I think you get the idea of what I’m trying to say! Peer pressure may prevent people from changing to a different group, and fear of rejection from the other group may prevent people from even trying to change membership from one group to another.

Members of one group, in some cases, may feel themselves to be superior to others in different groups, and they may even strongly dislike and/or distrust the other groups. They may even blame their troubles on the other group. This is called “scapegoating” and it is a normal and completely natural way that societies work. The “benefit” of “scapegoating” is that it builds cohesion within the group so that they will put aside their own personal and petty grievances with each other and work together in their desire to focus their negative energy onto the “scapegoat” of the moment.

I’m not saying that is a good thing, but it exists and it can be manipulated by people with great leadership skills. It can be a great motivator for change. That change can be good, or it can be evil. This, for better or for worse, is one of the ways that society works.
The perfect example of this would be how Hitler manipulated the German people into doing terrible things to each other.

Somewhere, sometime, in a universe far, far away, self-proclaimed SEO experts decided to separate SEO techniques into three groups and call them “White Hat” (Google loves) “Black Hat” (Google hates.) and “Gray Hat” (Google suspects but hasn’t proved it to be evil yet.) There is a web page that I just found and decided to share for this article that discusses the definitions and differences of the three SEO Hats. As for me, well, I’m a member of the Ladies Red Hat Society, so I’m just a little bit crazy and try to make the best of any situation I find myself in.

red hat free clip art

red hat free clip art

(There, now do you see how I got Hitler into a discussion about SEO and hats? I warned you, I’m a little bit crazy! And I am wondering if by putting both of those words in the title of my post I might get some strange search results!)

Opinion disclaimer

Opinion disclaimer

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