Well the fact of the matter is Surfulater is barely visible on Google (apart from paid ads). So I’ve been been doing some research to try and see how we can rectify this sad state of affairs. It is pretty obvious that if folks can’t easily find Surfulater when they do a Google search, then the chances of them becoming a customer are pretty slim.
The Search Engine Optimization (SEO) Experts tell you there are some basic things you need to do:
- You need to include your search keywords over and over again, preferably in bold, on your home page. This is referred to as keyword density. If the keyword density is too high you’ll get into trouble. If it is too low, your ranking in the results will not be good.
- You need to get links from other sites to your site. The sites that link to you, need to be related in some way to what your site/product is about. Too many links from inappropriate sites will get you into trouble. Too few, will see a poor ranking in the results.
- You mustn’t make any major changes to your site, as we did with the recent Surfulater site makeover. We now have a Google Page Rank of zero, which it has been since the new site was launched, earlier this month. I’m told that eventually this will resolve itself.
- You need to create fresh content on a regular basis. Search engines apparently love fresh content. One trick some sites employ is to acquire articles from various places and publish them on their site. This must be the school of; its quantity (or size) that matters, and not quality.
- You need to have your Page Titles, Meta Tags, Page names and Folder names all set just right.
- You need to watch out for Google Dance and the Google Sandbox. Lots of people talk about the sandbox, but few will tell you anything about.
- Publishing clear, concise, honest and interesting information doesn’t seem to matter much.
During my research I was led back to the Google Information for Webmasters page. Here are some points from the “Quality Guidelines – Basic principles:” section:
- Make pages for users, not for search engines. Don’t deceive your users, or present different content to search engines than you display to users.
- Avoid tricks intended to improve search engine rankings. A good rule of thumb is whether you’d feel comfortable explaining what you’ve done to a website that competes with you. Another useful test is to ask, “Does this help my users? Would I do this if search engines didn’t exist?”
- Don’t participate in link schemes designed to increase your site’s ranking or PageRank. In particular, avoid links to web spammers or “bad neighborhoods” on the web as your own ranking may be affected adversely by those links.
This is all good stuff, which I totally agree with and follow. And it probably explains why I’m not On Google and my competitors are. Funny how it also contradicts what all the SEO’s are telling us to do, as outlined above.
I guess that as long as I refuse to clutter my pages with repeated bold keywords, artificial text just for search engines and do other SEO gimmicks, I’m doomed to hover around in obscurity.
All I can hope for is the day when we have truly clever search engines that give great results, without forcing Web sites to pander for the search engines, instead of looking after our readers.