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I read this article in the morning and could not understand what you say about directory stuff +Rand Fishkin 
 
+Rand Fishkin brilliant and perfect. TY. Everything you say can be distilled down to simply engaging on the web, producing interesting content, being immersed in your industry, and building relationships. 

The mechanics of SEO need to be applied.. but the bottom line is to be on the web as much as possible and be natural. 

Thanks again for an awesome WBF. 
 
This is the best comparison and most practical advice on the topic I have seen for months. Mohnesh, the directory stuff was clear to me, I run a free directory that only list high quality sites about project management. I only have about 60 entries and only let good quality relevant sites on the list.So many directories will take anyone for a payment.
 
Although I still see our competitors going very well using all the techniques that you don't recommend, they add some terrible links but still do well. Do you think we might get another update next year?
 
Even Jim Boykin is on board! His session was great!
 
Michael that makes me a bit sad, life changing is quite extreme 
 
@Paul I thought more about the "Modus Operandi"
 
Okay can I ask a really open-ended question? As things have been moving towards content 'marketing' for a while (and we do this and encourage our clients to do likewise) - how does the average website owner/business owner of an SME/SMB have time to produce great content to earn links? Or on the flip side, given the economic climate, very few of our clients will have funds to pay for a good copy-writer to help produce quality content for them to approve. What's the best approach?
 
+Martin Oxby a very good question. We are a very small business offering project management training and consultancy.  We spend lots of time trying to create content and build a community of practice. We record podcasts, video and blog as much as we can. However we have stopped using one of our SEO consultants, because while they can do traditional link building it is hard to see how they contribute to the expert content on our website. I have been to a few SEO conferences recently in Brighton and London to try and understand what we should be doing for the future of SEO and most SEO consultant seem to get stuck when you talk about how they could support us with the content generation we need. So the question is what is the role of the external SEO consultant in this content community driven world?
 
The role of the SEO is going through major change at the moment and to be honest, we find ourselves more in the role of business advisor, marketing assistant AND search engine world. The SEO's job is to make sure that clients are targeting the right online market both in search and in social media, and in general. The SEO also performs the role of website auditing, ensuring the website is structured well for search, there are no technical issues across the site that could hinder search engines, keeping an eye on the competition, providing advice, helping to create a 'content strategy' and pre-empting the keywords that content may be usefully geared towards. SEO is not just about ranking any more, it's about understanding the business, its aims and objectives and being in a position to offer advice to help the business to grow online and grow in business, one part of which is ranking.
 
Martin I think your analysis of marketing in an on-line world is a good description but is not the role many of the SEO I met seem to fill. I still get contacts every day offering link building. It's going to be an interesting few years for the industry. 
 
+Paul Naybour - I would have to agree that many people who cal themselves 'SEO' do not fit the description as to what they ought to encompass and embody. If people don't embrace the holistic view of SEO and business consultancy, then they will struggle and may cause businesses some damage going forward. As a a co-owner of a web design & SEO agent myself we want to build success for our clients going forward long into the future, which means ignoring any 'quick fixes' and only supporting quality strategies (and quality work) and doing nothing that could harm our clients' businesses now or in the future. This is the new model, in my honest opinion, that needs adopting, not the narrow view of the link builder.
 
+Martin Oxby Sound like you are on the right track to me, I am sure it will be of benefit to your clients. Although I do still see lots of people implementing all the techniques +Rand Fishkin recommends avoiding  and still ranking well, though sheer volume of rubbish links. 
 
+Paul Naybour but at some point #Google will level it. I agree some still rank with poor back links. But it's not a long-term strategy so long term they won't be getting their value from it. If they're still there in 6 months time, start looking for other reasons why they might still be ranking.
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