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Stop Thinking About SEO and Relax Already

by Ben Austin  |  
February 19, 2013

Everyone uses search engines, especially Google, which seems to be taking over the world. So, if you have great first-page listings, you will make great money---no matter what niche you're in. You have an unlimited supply of traffic coming to your website month after month. All you need to do is keep testing until you are making more money than you've ever seen. Some people have even become millionaires because of Google... if they have first-page listings.

For most folks, however, the results are a little different. You might not get even 1% of the traffic the other websites get. That means you don't make any money or you make very little. So, if you want to grow your business even more, you might need to think about something other than Google.  The people on the top of the first-page can sit back and count their money but you can't sit back.

Let's Get Something Straight

Everything you do is going to have an effect on SEO. When you leave your link everywhere, it's going to have an effect. When you write a guest post for someone, it's going to have an effect. When you help someone out and they tell all their friends about you, it could have an effect on SEO. Everything you do online will play some part in your future rankings. It doesn't matter if it's two weeks or two years from now. All the work you do will eventually give you a better position in the search engines.

So, forget about the search engines.

Stop trying to get better results in the search engines! You already know you can concentrate on other things and your results will improve on their own, so why try to manipulate them? If you go on Fiver and buy 10,000 links for $5, you deserve to be de-indexed from Google and anywhere else that catches you. Don't waste your time playing with fire. Go concentrate on other things that will bring you future results. You will find it much easier to reach greatness.

What Can You Do Instead?

Instead of focusing on SEO, you should be focusing on looking for the people who want to read your content. That means sitting down and thinking about where they will be. They might be in a few places, so that means you should concentrate on the ones where the biggest majority of them are. It could be a specialist forum or the comment section on a popular website. The only person who knows what to do is you because you're the only person that knows your company better than anyone else.

What's Going to Happen?

Sooner or later, you will start bringing in thousands of visitors to your site---and that's without SEO. In a few months (or maybe years), you might start noticing crazy traffic stats because you've jumped to the top of page one. All that hard work has finally paid off. You now have a legitimate business that's not going to crumble and die when Google releases their next algorithm change.

The last thing you want is to build a business on quicksand that has the chance of disappearing overnight, but that won't happen if you grow this way.

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Ben Austin is CEO of Absolute Digital Media, a UK-based agency specializing in an integrated approach to online marketing.

LinkedIn: Ben Austin

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  • by Greg Marshall Tue Feb 19, 2013 via blog

    Yes! Thankyou.
    That's my take. SEO is important but connecting to people and creating content that people want to read is more important. Our product has a buying cycle that can last more than a year. SEO is not as important as creating and establishing those long-term relationships.

  • by Phil Vallender Tue Feb 19, 2013 via blog

    Hi Ben,

    I agree with a lot of what you say but I think the implications are slightly different.

    In my blog post 'SEO is dead. Long live search engine compatibility' ( I hypothesised that the principles of on-page SEO are now so well and widely understood that it is essential to apply them in order to achieve your natural, deserved position in search engine rankings.

    The flip side of this being that even simple mistakes or omissions in your on-page SEO can really harm your natural position.

    Moving up from your natural position however, as you say, is entirely down to your off-page efforts.

    Cheers, Phil.

  • by Gemma Holloway Tue Feb 19, 2013 via blog

    Sorry Ben but I am afraid I disgree with your point, especially "It doesn’t matter if it’s two weeks or two years from now. All the work you do will eventually give you a better position in the search engines."

    As companies invest more in SEO the higher up the rankings they climb. In order to gain the higher positions on Google you have to knock someone else out of the spots above you. Results on the first page are in that place because of the continuous hard work they put in to gaining rankings.

    SEO is not a 'manipulation', despite the common perception. It is about providing a quality user experience. What you have described in your blog is good SEO practice, consequently, meaning that by following your advice, a business would still be focusing on SEO.

  • by Mitchell Cogert Tue Feb 19, 2013 via blog

    This is truly a ridiculous article. Google makes and breaks businesses--and it all leads back to SEO.

  • by Robert Andrews Tue Feb 19, 2013 via blog

    Come on! Is it really that simple. I work with SEO, guest blog and post comments on blogs. Still not getting a ton of traffic. But I'm not throwing in the towel yet. I know that I need a unique domain.

  • by Robert Andrews Tue Feb 19, 2013 via blog

    I've gotten 100% on my SEO ranking and used tags related to my site without much traffic. I agree. It definitely takes time and hardwork. And you have to offer something worth coming back too.

  • by Jozef Búry Wed Feb 20, 2013 via blog

    I agree on that with you Ben. People should concentrate on their business and creating interesting content, that their potential customers are willing to read, share, return to that and the listing in search engines will come naturally. That is the meaning of search engine - show what people are looking for...

    Rather than spend 1 cent on buying links, use it for creating interesting content.

    I think, it is still good to use the common on-page seo tactics (heading tags, titles, descriptions, bullet points etc.) while it helps showing the content in the proper way to the readers, but it makes no sense to spend time on on-page or off-page seo for weak content.

    But it is sometimes hard to convince customers to spend money on the things that matter :-) and not buying links etc.

  • by Ron Thu Feb 21, 2013 via blog

    Hey, I totally get it; the google-algo-focus is a crazy way to market and a frustrating way to run a life. You did, however, over-state a few things by representing "SEO" as something SEPARATE from finding your audience and connecting with them. If you ignore SEO, it will be pretty tough to help your audience find you.

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