Search Engine Optimization News, Tips and Information

Information on search engine optimization strategies for business.

Tuesday, June 13, 2006

Google's Big Daddy Update

Items of major importance to Google, straight from the horse's mouth...
Anybody ever heard of Matt Cutts? He's a lead software engineer at Google, he's all over the web. He has a personal blog which can be very insightful. In fact, he is telling us what Google wants! Check out these excerpts - this is extremely valuable information:

On sites that are penalized or banned:

The sites that fit "no pages in Bigdaddy" criteria were sites where our algorithms had very low trust in the inlinks or the outlinks of that site. Examples that might cause that include excessive reciprocal links, linking to spammy neighborhoods on the web, or link buying/selling.

On the importance of not linking to "bad neighborhoods":

Linking to a free ringtones site, an SEO contest, and an Omega 3 fish oil site? I think I've found your problem. I'd think about the quality of your links if you'd prefer to have more pages crawled. As these indexing changes have rolled out, we've improving how we handle reciprocal link exchanges and link buying/selling. I'm seeing links to mortgages sites, credit card sites, and exercise equipment (be penalized).

On what types of links are good for you:

You've got some people who were relying on reciprocal linking or link buying complaining specifically that they're not crawled as much.

On the importance of blogs:

You ask "I'm wondering how you gain relevant links, in some sectors, without reciprocating, or paying? Do you believe that rivals would give you a free one way link, lol?" My answer is that trying to force your way up to the top of search engines is in many ways not working in the most efficient way. To the degree that search engines reflect reputation on the web, the best way to gather links is to offer services or information that attract visitors and links on your own. Things like blogs are a great way to attract links because you're offering a look behind the curtain of whatever your subject is, for example.

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Monday, June 05, 2006

Why You Can't Get Good SEO for $29.99 per Month

That cheap out-of-the-box SEO software readily available on the Internet that promises you top rankings for only $29.99 per month is sure to get you in the top 10 Google results! If you are optimizing for "beach resorts in Nome, Alaska", that is.

Unfortunately, you probably have a business that is somewhat more competitive. Wasting money on an out of the box seo solution is going to do nothing but get you frustrated - and make the vendor of the out of the box solution rich.

Out of the box solutions such as Submit Express, Web Position Gold, IBP and the like are cheap - but don't do much. Effective search engine optimization involves human intervention and simply cannot be accomplished via use of these cheap services. Optimizing your meta tags and dropping a few keywords into your web site won't pay the rent.

The fact of the matter is this - quality search engine optimization requires individualized attention. Search engine optimization is not a one size fits all proposition. Skimping on your seo budget is cheating yourself and is offensive to search engine professionals.

As an seo professional, I get this all the time - people trying to either skimp on their search engine optimization budget, get me to work for an "interest" in their start up idea, or just "do them a favor" and tell them what is wrong, and they will "fix it themselves". Please. If a business owner is not willing to invest into their business, then why in the world would I want to?

Take this recent inquiry - a real life statement: "Please tell me, what can i do using only my own time and $100 to get in the top 10 for 'business forum'?" Now think about this - wouldn't any professional be extremely offended if someone approached them and asked them to make them rich for only $100? A keyphrase like "business forum" is extremely competitive - you are competing against Forbes, CNBC, and the like. You are asking a professional to invest many, many hours of time over the course of several months or years to get anywhere close.

My plumber charges more than $100.00 per hour. Do you think my plumber would be offended if I asked him to work for me for months or years at that rate? Wouldn't any professional?

So here's the scoop, folks. SEO professionals don't want a stake in your business. They don't want a share in your profits, stock options, or a promise to pay "once things start to happen". Just like everyone else, SEO's need to feed themselves and their families. If you are not willing to invest in your business, don't ask another professional to do so. Go and spend the $29.99 per month on an out of the box solution. Then, when you decide you would like to see some results from your expenditure, come back and talk to us.
About the Author: Matt Foster is the President of ArteWorks Business Class,, and is an expert in search engine optimization, regularly achieving top rankings for his clients. Mr. Foster has been active in the industry since 1995. For further information, or to begin the process of optimizing your site for search engines, please contact Mr. Foster toll free at 877-812-2217, or by email to
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