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Changing The Focus From Rankings
Posted 14 May 2005 - 03:24 PM
Starts to become a description of the modern SEO er, his/her services and goals.
How do you feel: SEO Search Engine Optimizer or Web Site Optimizer or . . . . . . . .
Are search engines the sole tools to drive traffic to a website?
I think a lot of other tools should not be forgotten. E-mail marketing, off line promotion, and even submitting to portals and indexing (not for the sake of SE results but as traffic supplier)
As far as site optimization, i think Randy got some really good points there. A visit is valuable when it makes the visitor take the action you wanted. Be it a sales, a better understanding of your company, trust, getting an answer on a service question, whatever you value.
Posted 14 May 2005 - 07:23 PM
The phone consultation can provide them with some of the little subtleties they may not have thought about, which may very well pull their position up a few. (Of course it may not, but it will be a lot cheaper way of testing!)
Posted 17 May 2005 - 03:56 PM
Rankings are not a good metric for success, whether or not you are an SEO or a potential client. What actual difference do rankings, per se, make to your business?
As a potential SEO client, you have ot be very careful about accepting rankings as a measurement of success. Many, many SEO companies offer irrelevant, low competition rankings as a performance measurement criterion. Beware of this!
As an SEO, the use of rankings to measure performance is even more problematic. As in this case, were you to achieve a 1000% increase in traffic and/or "conversions", but fail to increase the nebulous "rankings" on one phrase which the client judged important, should your efforts be judged a success or failure? In terms of a sustainable business model, remember that at present even measuring rankings is against most search engines' terms of service or robots exclusion protocol. In future, rankings are likely to be different on the same search term for each individual searcher, and/or varying over time. What are they worth then? Are they a stable basis upon which to build a business and measure perfornance?
Both clients and SEOs need to learn that "rankings" count for squat. They have no value, per se, and even their measurement causes problems. It's far more preferable, valuable and responsive to measure traffic and/or conversions, however a conversion is defined. The sooner the industry and its clients learns that, the better.
Posted 17 May 2005 - 05:36 PM
Posted 17 May 2005 - 09:01 PM
I also wonder about keyword selection. How should an SEO choose what keywords to select? This is, again, vitally important with similar words when choosing the primary thrust of a site. Job or career? SEO or SEM?
No site can rank for everything, and choosing to chase one set over another can lead to good or bad results. Without a focus on ROI and conversions, an SEO may chase the wrong set of words in a misguided attempt to drive traffic.
That has always been a bit of my bugbear with keyword research: most of it focuses on traffic volume. I don't really care what the numbers of searches are per term, I want to know what terms get the best results, and why. Knowing that a site can increase what matters ($$$), and makes decisions on keyword targetting more effective.
Posted 18 May 2005 - 04:14 AM
Really, I've never been into measuring rankings and as you know, during those first few years of SEO, you never really met many other SEOs or saw how they went about it. So I've always worked from site logs and other data that the site itself can provide and it has done me just fine.
Posted 20 May 2005 - 01:28 PM
I find a lot of my clients - small manufacturers & industrial types - aren't thinking about moving up from #5 to #3 in the SERPs so much as they simply want to show up somewhere/anywhere in the first couple pages! They're thrilled if their new site appears halfway down page 2; I feel like they might as well be on page 1000 if they aren't in the top 8 results.
Posted 20 May 2005 - 05:41 PM
It's been a looooooooong time since I last looked at that, but once upon a time when I did a little study I had sites that got more traffic and better conversions by being on the top of page 2 than if they ranked a couple of places higher.
Now this doesn't mean that I would have ever dreamed of going to a client and saying "We need to move your #7 ranking down a few positions so that you fall off the first page."
Posted 25 May 2005 - 08:58 PM
That would be a very cool study to delve into.
Somehow, it has a very credible ring to me... above the fold is always better.
Posted 25 May 2005 - 11:29 PM
Don't know how true that is, but it was a good theory!!!
Posted 26 May 2005 - 07:02 PM
The leads I get from google are generally from people obsessed with rankings, as opposed to people who already know me from my newsletter or the forum, or my articles.
Certainly not complaining about the ranking, but it's an interesting observation!
It's actually cool that the ranking does bring potential clients these days. I've been in that spot off and on for many years at many different engines, at many different times. It used to look cool, but really not bring that many potential clients. It does bring a lot now (a few a day), but like I said, they're not the best leads in the world!
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