Get real and forget about SEO

by Chris Vogel

Search Engine Optimization is one of those silver bullets that everyone wants but nobody really understands. We’ve taken a stab at explaining it to the common man without the fancy geek talk. Search Engine Optimization (SEO) is the concept of influencing your ranking with the leading search sites (Google, Yahoo, Bing, etc.).

What the user sees

SEO usually falls into two categories: on-page and off-page optimization. On-page optimization includes everything you can do on your own site. Page load speed, meta tags, content relevance, etc. are typical examples. At Dotvita, we deal with this sort of optimization daily and happily help our clients get things right. Our strategy is focused on being authentic and providing great value to your website visitors. In other words, if it’s useful for them, it’s worth doing.

What the user doesn’t see

Off-page optimization is far more powerful and an entire industry in and of itself. There are service providers that specialize in placing inbound links on industry relevant sites and come up with viral methods to spread the word. Sadly, in many cases it involves gaming the ever-changing algorithms of Google. Many SEO-optimized sites will have identical clones to their content, will be filled with tons of irrelevant links and uncountable pages of content which have been scraped from other sites.

What search engines favor beyond anything in the world is content combined with credibility (links from reputable 3rd party sites). Creating original content is hard work, and most small businesses can’t commit the resources to write posts, shoot videos or come up with engaging ways to draw people in. For this reason small businesses are looking for the easy button. In other words: a company that they can pay to do it for them.

Now don’t get me wrong, there are reputable companies out there that will do a great job at placing you on relevant, trusted sites by contributing to them in a meaningful way, but you will pay according to effort–and it’s a ton of effort.