I'm not sure if there's etiquette for how long a Google+ post can or should be, but grab your morning coffee. Haha ;-)

In truth I hate pure, unadulterated dependence on those tools…

I personally like SEO tools (I use several of them and use +Raven Tools  like it's going out of style) – but I think of them like I do a nurse (I love nurses, FYI) to a doctor – they're there to gather information on on a site's SEO efforts, but the SEO should be overlooking that data, researching that individual set of data and making their own diagnosis. An SEO tool is supposed to be a diagnostic tool, not the sole source of the diagnosis.

This morning I got an email from a link building company through the Sugarrae contact form…

"I know you are promoting pushfire.com (Found out from their backlinks), not sure if I can advertise in a similar way let me know thanks."

This is a prime example of what happens when you allow a tool to be more than a tool and make the whole diagnosis. I assume that they noticed our Penguin boost (more likely a larger result of a lot of other people's dives) and they ran our site through a tool (they promote tools making things easy on their site). That tool likely (rightfully) told them, that PushFire had a lot of links coming from Sugarrae.com and the (insert a specific tools back link power rank name) probably put the links from Sugarrae.com to PushFire.com at the top of the power scores list.

I'll even give them the benefit of the doubt that they clicked through and saw PushFire had a main page "ad" and very prominent links (likely, since they used my contact form to reach me).

What they didn't bother to do was actually, you know, LOOK at those links from +Sugarrae  to +PushFire  and try to understand WHY they were there and how PushFire achieved them. Had they done that, they may not have been surprised to get this response in return…

"Actually, I co-own PushFire and am the CEO, which I'm surprised you also didn't notice from our backlinks."

Had someone been diagnosing our links and rankings manually, they'd have noticed PushFire also had links from speaking bios, clearly attached to myself and the Sugarrae brand.

Now I know that 1. We're on other companies radars and 2. This specific company, while larger, is local to us and 3. Were I an asshole (which I'm not) and believed in outing (which I don't) and liked to report competitors (which I've never done in my life and never will do), I've got a pretty good hunch a portion of their links are paid – and could easily fill out a form making Google aware of it.

The moral of the story? Calculators are nice, but they shouldn't be depended on in place of actually learning how to do math. Especially when this game that we all love to play relies heavily on being able to discern connections, relationships, intent and the correlation between data.


  #SEO #linkbuilding  
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