Sunday, July 6, 2014

Google SEO: It really ain’t that hard – Only 2 Main Questions to Ask

People would like to read everything you need to know about SEO.

SEO is something that seems to mystify people.  From what I can see, there are all sorts of gurus but not necessarily any experts.

I don’t blame people and companies for wanting to know more about SEO.  After all, people use search engines to answer their questions all of the time, every day…many times a day.

Of course, Google is the king of those search engines.  Since so many people use Google, why wouldn’t we want to find ways to have search engines, like Google, list good things about us?

Google gets roughly two-thirds (2/3) of all of the searches.  Nobody else is even close.

So the actual question is…HOW can we optimize our pages for the Google search engine (Google SEO)?

Really, there are only two (2) questions to ask:

The first (1st) question is the more complicated one.

Question #1: What things would people be doing if they really thought that I (or my company) was a big deal?

What do I mean by “things people would be doing” or if I was a “big deal?”

It’s important to consider the different groups of people in this case:
a. Me (or you)
b. My friends and family
c. Other people who know me OFFLINE
d. People who know me ONLY ONLINE
e. Other people who might have heard of me as a “celebrity”

Why is it important to consider different groups or categories of people, because each person will refer to you differently, depending upon
(a) what he/she knows about me or my company,
(b) what he/she wants other people to know about me, my company, or what I represent, and
(c) what he/she might want to gain from promoting me, my company, or what I represent.

In other words, it is important to understand that different people will have different motivations.

So if I really am a big deal, when…and where (which environments)…are people really likely to talk or write about me or my company?

Will they talk about me on forums?  Will they talk about me on social media?  Will I be in the news?

How will they write or talk about me?

Are they likely to refer to me by name?  Will they spell it correctly?

Backlinks: If they refer to my website, where will they likely point people?  What anchor text (those “click-able” words that point to my website) will people use?

Will there be any pictures or videos?

Am I likely to have professional papers, articles, presentations, etc?  If I wanted to be published, which “publishers” would I most likely target, given my goals?

Will people always point to my website when they refer to me?

The second question is much simpler to explain, but it’s the more difficult part…implementation.

Question #2: What can I do to help make me (or my company) look like a big deal?

This is the question that will make—or break—your SEO efforts.

Google is getting more sophisticated at considering factors…and measuring for those factors.  So it’s getting harder to “trick them” using black hat SEO techniques.  It’s possible, still, but it’s getting harder every day.

Think through the answers within Question #1.

Would you expect the same people to talk about a laboratory biologist as a professional online marketer?

Would you expect news stories about sports to be discussed or written by the same people who discuss politics?  Would the same groups of people hang out in those same places?

Does Google expect you to market yourself?  I don’t know, for sure, because I’ve never had any discussion with anyone from Google, but my logic tells me that…YES…Google expects an intelligent person to promote himself and his company, especially if he owns that company.

Actually, Google probably appreciates you marketing yourself, because you will help it see how it should “categorize” you, meaning you help answer the question, “When should we list things about you?”

Marketing for yourself can help Google help you.

However, Google (it seems) would like to see “marketing about you” coming from other people, too.

Things that Google will probably find to be “fishy.”
--All of your marketing about you coming from the same computer or set of computers.
--All of the backlinks about you or your company point to your website and nowhere else.
--All of the backlinks pointing to your website come from the same “nameless” sources.
--You have a TON of backlinks pointing to your website, but nobody on social media ever mentions you.
--You have a TON of backlinks pointing to your website, but you’re never in the news.
--You have backlinks pointing to your website coming from sources that have nothing to do with what you do.
--You have backlinks pointing to you from parts of the world where you have no real association.
--You have a disproportionate amount of “keyword anchor text” pointing to your site.
--Your website is not really a resource, but you have TONS of backlinks to it.
--You have a ton of mentions on social media, even though your industry is not a major conversation topic.

Essentially, either you can do things to be a “big deal” or you need to figure how to create that situation artificially.

White Hat SEO: Trying to find ways to really be a big deal.
Black Hat SEO: Trying to find ways to look like a really big deal.

I’m not trying to nag you and say you should never use black hat SEO techniques, but maybe some of that effort could be shifted to simply becoming more of a big deal...for real.

That would probably help you online…and in life.

SEO is nothing more than those two (2) main questions.  Frankly, to me it seems like this is everything you need to know about Google SEO.

Does SEO really seem to be complicated to you, now?

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