When re-doing my site for the first time in 4 years – I had to get rid of a lot of 404’s. I also found all my posts to threadwatch. My buddy Tony Spencer mentioned doing a roundup of some of the favorites. Enjoy your stroll down memory lane :)
Most believe SEO is a skill in itself and once mastered can be used to orchestrate successful campaigns, a belief that couldn’t be farther from the truth. Instead, one needs to learn many different sets of skills in order to truly understand SEO.
We all know in recent years that the value of link building via directories has dropped significantly, but many act as though this is a new thing. The discussion has been going on for a lot longer then you think.
It’s far too clear today that reliance on certain types of SEO practices as your only way to pay the bills can ruin your business when big daddy Google waves his hands and updates the algo. What’s interesting is for how long the “death of SEO” discussion has been taking place (hint:forever).
They never get old, believe it or not. A nice set of resources to re-visit, and see whether or not these various link building tactics can still be used, are still relevent, or possibly even considered penalties in 2012. Great inspiration for those off-page campaigns.
It’s hard to imagine a time without no-follow links, forcing users to sign in to Facebook or just all together not moderating comments and letting threads run free. Well, at one point spamming was a much bigger issue, and it’s interesting to see how we got to where we are today.
Anyone who knows their SEO lingo should be able to spout off the standard list of Google filters like they do their ABC’s, but if you need a good introduction this thread has it. Also includes a good discussion about early duplicate content filtering.
I’m only including this here to remind everyone to remain humble, no matter what industry you’re in. These sites were once huge considerations, and now account for a very small percentage of search and social market share. Even the giants can fall.
Long before the days of Google celebrity Matt Cutts shooting videos explaining algorithm changes and updates, us SEO folk had to figure it out for ourselves. Here we see Google finally taking PR approach to anckowledging SEO.
Clickstream and user data has evolved into a large part of the algo. Here’s some insights as to where it started.
Over the years SEO’s have ousted big brands not playing by the rules Google has set forth, only to complain when those brands were not penalized in a harsher manner. Unfortunately these brands ARE relevant to consumers and Google will always have their backs (and Adwords budgets).
Once links became a commodity that people could profit from, an economy was created. Google has since attempted to crush that economy based on their system of editorial ethics. I’m sure the debate will continue…
Google’s reaction to blog comment spamming with “no-follow” lead to the idea of page sculpting, where sites would hoard their link equity. Google’s attack on SEO’s was met with an unexpected counter offensive. The idea of page sculpting has been revisited often, in this case during the no-follow frenzy.
If you really want to get a web developer or SEO fired up about “how the search engines” think – this is a great discussion. Make sure to introduce the ideas of “black hat and white hat” as well.
Truth is it’s likely never been a direct factor, but well written code has a multitude of other benefits that indirectly aid in search rankings.
When MySpace first arrived on the scene it denifnately got “used” by spammy types creating pages for products and brands, never really developing a mature method of advertising options. But the seed was planted that social networks would lead to marketing and advertising opportunities down the road (in other words, Facebook).
One of the problems with this industry is everyone wants to be talked about, wants to be in the SEO spotlight. Yes, blogging can help bring you exposure and business if you know how to create a conversation, but it’s not essential; many of the world’s greatest SEO minds do so without ever writing an article.
As much as we optimize and scrutinize the search engine, one must not forget to think about other traffic sources and visitor retention. The search engine is a tool but for marketing, but too much dependance will always cause problems in the long run.
Once upon a time the “sandbox” was a place new or penalized websites went and couldn’t rank for anything. Purgatory would have been a better nickname, when the God-like Google judged your worth.
If you got to experience the Digg effect, you know it was fantastic to be able to crush a server with raw social traffic. R.I.P. digg.
If you think the recent Panda/Penguin/Insert Stupid Algo Name here updates hurt webmasters, know it’s been going on for years. The same sob story about how Google “ruined” a business that didn’t have a solid buinsess model to begin with.
Anyone using or talking about Squidoo today? Didn’t think so. The title of this thread alone spells out what went wrong with seth’s fact site.
We can all read blogs and forums until our eyes pop put of our head, but if you’re running a business you need to know the fundamentals of lots of things – finances, economics, marketing (outside of the web). Take the time each month to digest a classic, it will put everything you do online into perspective.
It’s amazing reading a thread like this that discusses quality indicators (on-page) that people to this very day still do not prioritize. Eight years later and many of these are a playing a big part in how Google views your site.
It’s pretty crazy to think that you could get sued over some random person commenting on a blog post you wrote. But it happened!
A straight-up simple but killer thread on how to get into the right kind of mindset to get links. Today there are more social factors involved which makes this mindset all the more important.
Understanding the metrics and determining why a link is valauble then determines the monetary value. Public service announcement – don’t buy links!
This thread isn’t about SEO per se but man can we all learn from it. The intial post itself has some great points about creating positive PR opportunites (and how negative ones will blow up in your face and get the other guy a ton of links!)
A thread about an old post I did, in the heyday of link building the link request is what coined the term “link ninja”. It’s all about getting your foot in the door.
I wish this thread was longer – I could write a book about dealing with client demands. If you’re just jumping into SEO I highly suggest learning the ropes of how to explain things to clients (and knowing how to deal with them)
Just because you are good at optimizing web pages doesn’t mean you can help a business. Fundamentals of every aspect of business is also required to be a great SEO.
One of the more interesting ways Google has tried to penalize webmasters over the years is by putting the handcuffs on a site’s PageRank. It still shows up but the theory is a penalized site won’t pass the juice.
Yes it was the stone age, a time where everyone saw the same search results. Then along came personalized search and things became more complicated.
Even to this very day it’s quite interesting how the public percieves what it is we do. A good discussion every SEO should sit back and have with someone outside of the biz.
After Penguin hit last year, everyone began crying about the possibility of “negative SEO”. Truth is it’s been around for years in the form of “Google Bowling”.
Once the big G started figuring out they could get more bang for their buck by managing client accounts themselves, they went after the big accounts. Don’t be fooled by their complimentary assistance – they want you to buy more ads!
Michael Gray aka Graywolf breaks down a patent that still holds up as a good basic understanding of what Google’s looking for. While many new factors exist, this is a nice breakdown that every SEO should know verbetum.
What color hat do you wear? The distinction between different styles of SEO will continue to be a question clients ask. While black-hat used to get the job done the more Goolge flexes it’s muscle the less their tactics will be effective.
It’s amazing to think how good we had it back in 2005 – and even then we new the game was getting harder. Those who really paid attention were smart enough to see most of the updates we complain about now coming from a mile away.
It’s funny to read some of the comments in this thread, as we have some doubters here. RSS reader user metrics influencing spam removal? Makes total sense.
Who would have thought that search would result in a major brand’s PR struggle. It happened with one of the most hated companies in the world, so they struck back SEO-style.
Search used to be an automated land of rankings. Then us SEO’s figured out how to play the game and Google had no choice but to hand pick the results in the most competitive verticals.
Hope you enjoyed the post. Feel free to post your TW favorites in the comments.