Over the next few years, everything we know about marketing and advertising will be called into question. New technologies, changes in consumer behaviour and the rise of smart personal assistants will make or break brands, organisations and marketers. As practitioners, we will need to change our thinking and start preparing now.
Search Engine Optimization (SEO) has been a prominent strategy in marketing plans for over 20 years. But in the interests of businesses, marketers, and SEO pros, it’s time we all get it. SEO is dead.
When you ask someone what SEO is, everyone in the world will give you a different answer. When you pay someone to do SEO, they all do different things, with no clear overarching mandate as to what it entails.
Most clients don’t know what good and bad SEO is, and almost everyone has an overall feeling of unease. Read: ‘smoke and mirrors’.
There is no other industry on the planet where this feeling of confusion exists, and it results in deplorable behaviour in all areas, both companies and agencies.
Marketing is the foundation of any company’s success. Without the ability to reach people who might later become customers or customers, and without overall visibility in the market your brand operates in, you are doomed to failure.
Taking a look at the cold, hard SEO facts.
1. Search engine optimisation (SEO) flies in the face of why Google exists
When you reduce it to its very essence, “doing SEO” actually goes against the very thing Google is trying to achieve.
The search engine’s mission is to categorise the world’s information so that when you type something in the search box, it shows you the most relevant, authoritative, and knowledgeable website first, and so on in the list.
SEO is trying to bypass the system so that Google values you in high regard. And this at the expense of long-term results.
Switching it up
We work to transform you into the authoritative, relevant and experienced company or individual that you are and stop trying to evade a system that improves by the day.
2. There’s no standards
The SEO and digital marketing industry has zero standards. Not a thing.
This is because no one really knows what goes on in Google’s secret herbs and spices. So you end up with a few bottom-dwelling sharks that add no value and rip people off.
It happens while the good, honest, and those who know their craft fall into the same boat.
Malcolm Gladwell was definitely up to something when he said 10,000 hours of experience are required to become a true expert.
Yet you have “SEO experts” with three months of experience telling you how they will increase your revenue. It just isn’t cool.
97% of so called SEO and digital marketing experts wouldn’t have a clue what they are doing and will most likely stab your business to death.
3. SEO is essentially tidying up other people’s mistakes
This point will hurt you the most. Ultimately, SEO exists because other people haven’t done their job well.
Every SEO task I’ve seen needs to be done because other people aren’t doing their job properly.
While this has been relatively new in the last three to five years, as Google’s algorithm gets better and better, today the SEO people are just cleaning up other people’s messes and mistakes.
- Onsite Work
This means that the web developer did not do their job correctly (which is very common when it comes to sitemaps, robots, loading speed, interconnection etc.) or the content was not produced and loaded correctly, which means that your people marketing and communication needs to pull their socks up.
- 2. Building backlinks
No, you don’t need to build backlinks! You need to market your business on the main business directories.
You need to join and become active in your industry (and the respective websites), you need to get social and engage on social channels with your target audience.
Marketing your business in directories will result in external sources linking to you naturally. You won’t need to build backlinks yourself or pay for them. Paying for backlinks is a direct breach of search engine policy and guidelines and will get you into trouble fast.
You also don’t really need to build backlinks. You need a good marketing person to do better marketing and digital PR.
Articles can be ranked on the first page of Google without a single backlink. Googles intelligent algorithm ranks articles based on how good the information is as opposed to how many backlinks has. Ranking articles high in the search engines by simply writing a good article. These days content is king.
An artcile can have over 100 backlinks. If the content provides little to no value. It simply wont rank.
TIP. If your artcile is not ranking well in the search engines. Backlinks wont help. The solution : Write a better article.
A study conducted by Tech Business News concluded backlinks may be only required to rank your root/landing page. However, not required to rank articles or other content.
4. The old focus on 10 keywords speech
You don’t need to focus on the “10” keywords. You need to know your target audience intimately.
Find out what information they’re looking for online and answer every single possible question they might ask to add so much value to impress their socks all over your website (and that’s the job of your marketing department).
Instead, you need focus on great content marketing.
Hiring the right people to do the right work (and pay them well), SEO becomes redundant.
5. Theirs no barriers to entry
Meaning anyone can do SEO. Or so they say.
By the way, we noted on the freelancing platform Fiveer.com advertising to rank your website from zero to SEO hero in 90 days with a few hundred crappy and highly spammy backlinks. This is not cool at all. If you see advertising like this avoid it like the plague.
Digital marketing is a challenging game that requires real skills. This is not something that you can learn in three months and become an “expert”. It takes 10,000 hours to learn it really well, like everything else.
6. SEO is a lazy person’s marketing
Because most businesses don’t understand it (primarily because the industry has created so much smoke and mirrors), here’s the chain of events that often transpires.
- Business owners raise their hands, saying, “This is too hard, can’t I just pay someone to do it for me?”
- The SEO cowboys come in and say, “Sure, I’ll take your money. Outsource everything to me and I’ll make the problem go away. I’ll get you to the front page of Google, guaranteed! Trust me. I’m an expert.”
- And so, it just gets outsourced, with the expectation of results and value being delivered.
- Most SEO cowboys think they can get results by bypassing the system (see point two above). But that’s not generating good marketing and it certainly isn’t generating good business.
- Ultimately, you don’t deserve the right to do well on Google organic search because you haven’t proven that you are an authority in your industry, you are not the expert at your craft, you are not adding value to anyone, and you are you can’t expect Google to reward you for lazy marketing.
7. ‘Doing SEO’ simply doesn’t work
After researching over 1,000 companies, all the data shows that “doing SEO” doesn’t work. It doesn’t work by doing it in isolation.
Paying someone $ 2,000 a month to “do SEO, including creating four blog posts for you,” doesn’t work. It won’t give you the results you want.
SEO doesn’t work when you have a poor website, when you outsource your content, when you treat digital marketing (and all of your marketing for that fact) as an afterthought, in a haphazard approach.
SEO is the component that won’t work if the rest of your marketing isn’t working as it should.
SEO only works when all your marketing is working as it should, when the sum of the parts is greater than the whole. When you know your target audience exactly and you constantly add value to it. When your reviews are so good because your whole business works like a dream.
We know what the SEO people are going to say.
- ‘What about low word count on a page? Or low keyword density?’
- ‘Broken links are important to fix.’
- ‘Backlinking is still so important.’
- ‘We need to be producing content with a word count of 1,200 per page.’
It’s time to educate and tell you something you : Google doesn’t care!
The Google algorithms job is to :
- Analyse your business relative to your competitors
- Decide on which one is more important
- Decide which one is engaging with their audience better
- Decide which one is contributing and adding to their industry more;
- Decide which one is supporting the local community better
- Decide which one is marketing their business better.
- Decide which one is more authoritative
- Decide which one provides the best user experience
This is what Google really cares about.
Which business is best promoting your business.
This is what Google analyses, and this is how they will rate you against your competitors. This is based on your marketing.
Ultimately SEO results depend on how you market your business better than your competitors.
So what’s the best way to promote your business?
That’s a great question, and I’m glad you asked it. I have the perfect answer for you: whoever adds the most value wins!
Your mission is to add the most value to the greatest number: your target audience, your industry, your staff, your customers.
You have to help them, educate them, develop them, lead them, manage them and Google will reward you accordingly.
Warning word: you cannot define what “value” is. It’s up to your customers to decide
SEO is dead, long live content marking!
What do you think is going to happen? The death of SEO will be the result of a bunch of gurus getting together and creating silly little algorithms that the Google, yahoo, MSN and other search engines will use to rank websites in their own proprietary ways.
These digital marketing myths will not only hurt you as an online marketer today, but will hurt your business tomorrow.
Content marketing vs search engine optimization (SEO), is usually both titans of internet marketing, but they never speak of each other very often enough. In this short article, we’ll take a quick look at content marketing from the standpoint of SEO and how you might incorporate those two strategies to boost your online results.
Both search engine optimisation and content marketing have the goal of increasing website traffic and improving rankings in search engines, while ideally using as few resources as possible while maximizing the returns from those efforts.
So which one is better than the other?
Both methods can certainly help you to achieve your business goals, but which is really best for your business?
For those looking to boost traffic and improve rankings, content marketing is the right place to start because it can give you the best return on your investment while optimizing for the two major players – Google and social media.
Content marketing is the more “all-around” approach because it can provide you with both advantages while laying the proper foundation.