Marketing Madness

SEO-Centric Solutions Still Suck in 2013

You’d think that I proclaimed that I was going to take out Matt Cutts and tar and feather him personally, after the outrage that was received from the SEO community by my last article,  SEO is a complete waste of time.

They came out with the virtual pitchforks and tried to defend their “SEO-all industry” en masse, proclaiming that I was a heretic for pointing out the obvious.

What makes it more hilarious is that many of them shared the articles on Facebook and other social media, telling me how horrible I was, and how people should leave comments to my article – that my article itself was a “SEO bid” to get more traffic.

I thought that was considered link-baiting and a social media bid? If you can’t get the terms right, please stay out of the debate.

They then tried to interpret my article as being completely against SEO at all, instead of what is was about: that SEO shouldn’t be your main solution, because sites that rely on trying to manipulate the system will never be successful anymore.

Ever weirdly enough, some people even wanted to point out how their sites were getting so many keywords, enormous traffic, and how I wasn’t getting that many keywords.

They might be right, and perhaps I need to work on that – but they also failed to note that almost all of them were actually decreasing in traffic since Panda/Penguin came out.

Go figure, all the SEO-centric sites that talked about how to manipulate the system consonantly were receiving less traffic? Didn’t they read their own articles about why this was happening? Didn’t they take their own SEO-centric advice?

So why the anger and the outrage on saying what most of us in performance marketing knows?

Simply put, the SEO industry is attempting to bullshit its way into being something it isn’t.

Quoting, “Don’t get duped by the SEO Asshats… You don’t need to attend Hogwarts Academy of SEO Magick to learn the mysterious ways of the SEO wizards. Even though most of those lame asshats lock you into contracts that rival the cost of an Ivy League tuition (or what must be the astronomical cost of attending a college for mastering wizardry), there’s no mystery, and no there’s no magic.”

Yeah, on top of this,since Panda and Penguin, most people with half a brain have concluded that SEO-centric strategies don’t work. You need to be aware of the problems, and it doesn’t hurt perhaps to get consultant to work on some issues, but building an entire business and SEO-tricks won’t work.

So they have changed the definition of what SEO is, from Search-Engine-Optimization, to some nebulous strategy that includes Facebook, Twitter and magic pixie dust that will make you grow your business faster and faster than before.

My friend Frank Watson commented about the article that, “seo really has evolved in to a broader job – given how the engines display info – maps, places, mobile results – and the impact of social – traffic sources have changed and to succeed we need to go beyond what worked in the past.”

I have a lot of respect for Frank, but in all due respect…Yeah, isn’t that the point?

That SEO, as in Search Engine Optimization as the main strategy doesn’t work.

If you add in all these other things, it’s no longer SEO, it’s called marketing. You can’t continue to use the same term and tell me that it’s evolved. It’s like pointing to your kid and saying he is a cute monkey, because they are evolutionary distantly related. Your kid might look like a monkey, but he’s not, no matter how many times you call him monkey.

SEO only is the monkey. Everything else is evolved.

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Pace Lattin

Pace Lattin is one of the top experts in interactive advertising, affiliate marketing. Pace Lattin is known for his dedication to ethics in marketing, and focus on compliance and fraud in the industry, and has written numerous articles for publications from MediaPost, ClickZ, ADOTAS and his own blogs.

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  1. Spot on Pace.

    SEO is no longer the beast it once was, it certainly has evolved, and post panda and penguin, it’s easier.

    Less focus on keywords, link building, magic software and trickery, just write for your visitors and the rest will take care of itself.

    Long live “marketing”


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