Recently Google has been encrypting it’s search terms meaning that it’s harder to see what interests people that visit your website. One of the reasons behind this move is to make it harder for SEO’s who want to corrupt search results by putting their clients ‘top of the list’. For a blogger like me this is a bit annoying as my site statistics used to be understandable seeing words like ‘disco’ or ‘festivals’ tells me what people were looking for before clicking on my website. Since the change my stats now say ‘Unknown search terms’ or words to that effect.
Quite how all this jiggery-pokery works is beyond me but I do know that for less than £100 a year WordPress.com gives a satisfactory website that’s simple and easy to use, decent search rankings, blog, email and statistics even without the recently omitted search terms. It just works and works well enough not to go looking elsewhere. In fact if you use wordpress and millions do you will quite often recognise their sites or blogs around the web on a daily basis.
Also Google has shifted it’s attention away from providing Search Results to providing Answers. Next time you do a Google search you may notice you have to scroll down beneath the Answers and Adverts to find your Search Results. Could this signify the end of SEO’s altogether? Obviously not because today after advertising for FREE on the website Gumtree an SEO company rang me up. The conversation went a bit like this:
Him “Hi is that You?”
Him “The guy who’s advertising the SPMD?”
Me “Yes that’s me”
Him “ What would you say if I said we could put your site on the front page of Google for your business?”
Me “Well, I use wordpress.com and they already do a very good job thank you”
Him “We can do this, that and the other for you…. blah blah”
Me (guessing) “I already am the top page of Google if you search SPMD that’s me”
Him “Hmm, yeah I see what you mean. OK thanks bye”
Of course once he hung-up I had to check Google it to see if I was right, thankfully I was. In fact I owned the front page of search results thanks to my presence on Social Media, Gumtree and WordPress. After feeling rather smug with myself I was not prepared to rest on my laurels so I also checked Google.com, Google.es and Goole.nl (USA, Spain and Netherlands). Guess what I was also top of them too. So now I am feeling rather proud maybe it’s because I have been going since 2007 that Google gives me credit as there must be others like me?
I guess the purpose of this article is to give you some background to SEOs and prepare you for responding to that phone call or email. One things for sure they are an unscrupulous lot and are only going to sell their services to your competitors whether you’ve placed an order or not. In my rather unscientific and ill-informed opinion if you want to drive traffic to your website or blog it’s not going to cost you a lot of money. You have to use social media and provide some original ideas or insight, such as this article, that’ll make your product and know-how stand-out.
That’s why I am going to be blogging a bit more in 2014 because I was not happy with my WordPress annual report last year and think I can do better :)