Imagine you are a practitioner of the Internet dark arts, also known as black-hat SEO, and through your candle lit pouring over the ancient tomes of online evil you’ve discovered a dark and powerful secret:
In your hands you hold the knowledge of how to fool Google into making your terrible and spammy webpage number one on the search engine’s results for a highly lucrative keyword, like insurance.
How would you use your new found power?
Well, considering that you are the type who stuffs keywords and writes spam, the answer is obvious. If you had your way, you would have every term I search for direct me to another one of your pyramid scheme weight loss matchmaking systems. Evil…
Fortunately for the online world at large, no one has been too successful in manipulating Google’s system, with a few notable exceptions. If you are new to terms such as online exposure, you should read our article about free & simple marketing strategies. This is definitely one of the main reasons why Google has been able to maintain its massive popularity. After all, no one wants to be subjected to spam.
When was the last time you actually clicked on one of those pop-up ads proclaiming your victory in some nonexistent Internet competition? You probably never have. Unfortunately, since spam is so cheap to produce and send out en masse, the tiny, tiny percentage of unfortunate souls who do click and get scammed will be enough for the spammers to turn a profit.
Unscrupulous SEO tactics, while not quote as despicable as email spam, are still means of generating traffic in a way that isn’t completely honest. It’s traffic that’s not a result of merit, and therefore not wholly deserved. Even if you do manage to get PageRank with these tactics it would be short lived as the chances of being penalized and blacklisted from the search engines algorithms are great.
However black hat SEO, buying followers, Internet devil-worship and other unspeakable practices seem to be only growing in popularity, even though Google is constantly improving its ability to detect and destroy the rankings of those who use them. So many misguided, confused or just down right malicious people are constantly working to find the next chink in Google’s oh-so-shiny armor to exploit. But why?
Because fooling people into linking, clicking, and/or buying from a poorly designed website peddling a poorly designed product is much, much easier than the real work: creating a good product, and marketing it properly.
We all feel lazy sometimes. The problem with hard work is that it’s hard. If you have ever sniffed a T-shirt and worn it again instead of washing it; eaten a sandwich without a plate even though your mom hates it when you do that, or copied and pasted text straight off of Wikipedia then you know damn well why someone would want to try and cheat Google.
Is this how you want to run your business? Operate your blog? Live your life?
While technical optimising for the search engines is essential, it should never be viewed as the ultimate solution for your website’s performance. You need to have the user experience (which incidentally is also one of the ranking factors) at the center of your website design.
Providing real value to people is the only way to reap real rewards. In the over-saturated market of the Internet, the last thing that is needed is another mediocre attempt to produce web content simply for the sake of selling a product.
Educate people. Entertain them. Enlighten them. Above all, appreciate them.
Deception is not a healthy way to start a relationship, be it personal or business. Treat your users like you would treat your friends, and they will keep coming back.
At Internet Dominance we believe that your online presence should be real and interactive. We view Internet marketing as a channel through which you can form lasting friendships with your customers. Contact us today to learn more about our content creation strategies.