The point of this blog is to reiterate something I’ve been banging on about for at least a decade now… When it comes to SEO who do you optimize for, Google or your visitor? In this instance let’s assume that your visitor is your target visitor and not get caught up in whether you’re attracting the right people or not.
We all know the term black hat when it comes to SEO. Techniques that are not entirely ethical in their approach to gaining search visibility. Ultimately these techniques, which of course often result in your site being penalized and can even lead to the collapse of your business, derive from the fact that people build their search strategic around what Google will regard as being correct at that time. This can mean trying to understand the algorithms and manipulate them or simply focusing attention on the pieces of work that Google values.
The issue here of course is that Google is not a static search provider. The rules change – regularly and sometimes significantly. You will therefore always be threatened with issues and risks and you will always be a step behind Google. To put it simply it’s just not smart.
If however you always ensure your search strategy is focused on your visitor / target customer then you are effectively fully aligned with Google. Their goal is of course to create an Internet that is best optimized for its users. If you share this goal with them then the changes they make will fit with your strategy and you’ll be one step ahead of Google.
So in short optimize for your visitor, not for Google and we’ll all live happily ever after. Read more about SEO techniques in my book, Digital Marketing Strategy.
Death to black hat SEO.