I had one idea of SEO while I was first learning about it. The more I read the more I see why I had that initial impression. What impression am I referring to? The following:
- Rankings are all that matter
- A few changes on-site + some links will take you from #100 to #1
- SEO is directories, web 2.0s, guest blogging, and building links
Now I am sure you could argue that this is what SEO is, and you could be right in your own respect. What I am hoping to address is my experience over recent months moving into an in-house search specialist position. I am currently working with a company called Bookoo that owns a variety of websites along withtheir initial yard/garage sale site (similar in many respects to Craigslist). I do not build directory submissions. I do not guest blog. I do not even build links at all in fact. What do I do? I build infrastructure. (Let me explain what I mean)
In any business the principal concern is profit. As I brought up earlier, rankings are not important in and of themselves. You can rank first for the term “cheese sandwich muffin man” all day long without turning a single penny in profit. Why? Who on earth would search for that in the first place? And even then, good luck monetizing that type of traffic.
When I look at any one of the websites we own at Bookoo, I am concerned with ranking specific content for certain search terms. For example I want buyers to be able to find our different categories and items from Google, Bing, or Yahoo. Considering the fact that we have hundreds of thousands of items posted and always changing, building links one by one simply does not fit the bill (or the budget). What I can do is set up on-site changes to meta tags and content to ensure that Google sees the pages I want it to see. Before, I called this building “infrastructure.” The infrastructure I am referring to is a structure which will dynamically generate meta data, heading tags, and URL structures in a way that is Google-friendly. This structural setup doesn’t just apply to on-site data. Several of our sites use combinations of easy social sharing and reciprocal linking to build the link juice we need. As you can see this is much easier than manual changes or link building.
I hope you can see the difference that I’ve seen coming into an in-house position. I do realize that rankings are important. Directories and other link building techniques have their place in a well-designed SEO strategy. However, the most important part of SEO is not found in these things. SEO is first and foremost for building traffic and creating profits. Everything else is a means to an end. They seem to have a good handle on what I’m getting at over at SEO-Theory.com as per their article on the subject of corporate SEO. Check it out, love it.
I hope you’ve enjoyed my rant for the day.