Internet Marketing Questions: Panda and Beyond

7 replies
After the Panda update, and all its derivatives, the main questions I'm getting from my students and followers are, "Is SEO Dead?", "Will affiliate marketing stop working?", "What about AdSense sites?", and "WHY did Google do this?".

I remember in my early days of Internet marketing when Google did a big update at the time. The same EXACT questions were being asked then. I was new to the biz and rightfully scared with all the talk about the "death of Internet marketing".

Since then however, I, along with many of my online friends and students, have generated many hundreds of thousands of dollars of income via the organic search results.

(Remembering my early days and realizing the sky did not fall during any updates makes Panda a lot less scary.)

Here's an important point ALL new marketers should remember during this time:

Let's take a group of 100 beginning Internet marketers today and follow them for 3 or 4 years. Even with the Panda update, 2 or 3 in that group might achieve fairly good success within several years.

Now, let's pretend the same group of 100 begins right now...but the Panda update never happened. In fact, no significant update happens for 3 or 4 years that stirs things up. Still, after that time, only 2 or 3 people in that group will have relatively good success. (In fact, probably the same 2 or 3 people from each example!)

What I'm saying is this:

Internet marketing is not dead. But it's not static either. What worked yesterday may not work tomorrow. By the same token, what was unimportant yesterday may be a vital piece of the success puzzle tomorrow

Those who become (or remain) successful several years from now will do so simply by adapting to the changes required.

What are your questions or thoughts about this?
#internet #marketing #panda #questions
  • Profile picture of the author JKflipflop
    I agree totally - like most business, IM would stagnate altogether if it remained static. The fact that it is dynamic and environment adaptive (read technology) reinforces its validity as a business model.

    So saying IM is dead is obviously an extremely shallow perspective :|
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  • Profile picture of the author Jeff Bronson
    My thoughts are things will continue to evolve. You will always have a couple groups of people participating.

    The few high level people who stay on top of changes and provide valuable information, like your Rand Fishkin and Danny Sullivan. The high level people will teach ways to achieve solid, long lasting results that help both clients and the integrity of the Internet alike.

    The "looking for a quick" buck crowd will always be around. While there are some shortcuts which worked in the past, going forward this will be much more difficult. It will be especially difficult for people trying to run a large number of sites themselves, or agencies that have 2 or 3 people to manage 100 SEO accounts.

    Yes, recently 750,000 sites were notified by Google of suspicious back link profiles, yet there are many more who can slip under the radar, for now. I am sure there are plenty of people with MFA (Made for Adsense) sites who can run Xrumer blasts to their collection and still pull in decent money. In time, this will be a thing of the past.

    Just today, while at my job with a web development company, I got the following spam email. This is a perfect example of low quality work, at a low price that tends to yield mediocre results and make a mockery of the industry.

    -----
    We’ve good work experience with number of clients in US,UK and AU.

    Monthly Task and responsibilities: -
    1. 150 Directory submissions
    2. 10 Social Bookmarking Submissions
    3. 10 Article Submissions (1 article x 10 article directories)
    4. 10 Press Release Submissions (1 press release x 10 press release websites)
    5. 10 Blog Submissions
    6. 1 unique, 400 word article written
    7. 1 unique, 400 word press releases
    8. 15 One Way back links with mix PR
    9. Meta tags changes suggestions
    10. Keyword research
    11. Competitor Analysis
    12. Heading tag changes
    13. Alt tag changes
    14. Interlinking wherever required.
    15 Keyword density in site content.
    16. HTML Site Map
    17. XML site map and Submission in webmaster tool
    Our Best rates for this are: - USD 150 per month per project at beginning of every month.

    ----

    On the other hand, if you want a SEO freelancer or agency to do high level link building, create viral content, develop industry relationships for their niche, it's going to cost you a good $2,000/month minimum. And........ it could take 8 to 12 months to really see quality results.

    Which one will a small business choose? $24,000 over the course of a year, or a $150/mo service that may boost you temporarily , but in the long run really hurt your website's reputation.

    If a SEO agency has 100 accounts, can they really engage in link building techniques like reclamation, broken link building, relationship based linking etc? Probably not.

    Many agencies out there rely on blog networks and paid links, it's the only way to manage it all. I can imagine they are sh****ng bricks right now. Only a small number of quality firms can do it right.

    The way I see it, being in the business since 2004 a good SEO/Internet Marketing person needs to understand all of the following , not just how to construct link schemes that reply on auto-posting software.

    You'll need to know:

    *Google Analytics (note: look at all of the social reporting they have added recently, even a back link reporting tool under the SOCIAL menu).

    *Pay Per Click Management

    *Quality Link Building (ex. What's now referred to as inbound marketing).

    *Conversion Rate Optimization

    *Copywriting

    *Technical On-site SEO

    *Social Media platforms, relationship discovery, outreach and management.

    .....and the list goes on.

    That is a lot of disciplines to keep up with. What I've learned after years of visiting forums is to go straight to the top sources (ex. Industry leader blogs) and learn that way from the big dogs.

    You have to be a "real" person today. Imagine trying to continue using 4 or 5 different online personas, good luck getting any social credibility.

    Look at this article I found off Inbound.org's list , it's called:

    Google Penguin Creates Mass Unemployment In India

    A couple of excerpts:

    "Today internet workers protested outside Google Mumbai. Google’s recent algorithm change (called Penguin) has created widespread unemployment in Mumbai, Delhi and Bangalore. The Penguin update effected low quality SEO/link building services, much of which was being outsourced by the US. It is estimated that 80% of the worlds link building was carried out in India, many of the top SEO firms in the UK and Europe outsourcing work here. They are now having to change the way they work and find new solutions, many not having the knowledge themselves."

    "One Indian ‘SEO Expert’, Steve Patel, used to work 15 hour per day ‘spinning’ content and uploading it to a large network of sites for US/UK clients. His youngest son, Ashwad (6yrs), had also been taught how to link build. ”Ashwad was getting very good on programmes like Xrummer, but now his future is in jeopardy”"

    That's my take. For the few who dedicate themselves to taking the high road, they will continue to find opportunities.
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    • Profile picture of the author Ronak Shah
      Originally Posted by Jeff Bronson View Post

      My thoughts are things will continue to evolve. You will always have a couple groups of people participating.

      The few high level people who stay on top of changes and provide valuable information, like your Rand Fishkin and Danny Sullivan. The high level people will teach ways to achieve solid, long lasting results that help both clients and the integrity of the Internet alike.

      The "looking for a quick" buck crowd will always be around. While there are some shortcuts which worked in the past, going forward this will be much more difficult. It will be especially difficult for people trying to run a large number of sites themselves, or agencies that have 2 or 3 people to manage 100 SEO accounts.

      Yes, recently 750,000 sites were notified by Google of suspicious back link profiles, yet there are many more who can slip under the radar, for now. I am sure there are plenty of people with MFA (Made for Adsense) sites who can run Xrumer blasts to their collection and still pull in decent money. In time, this will be a thing of the past.

      Just today, while at my job with a web development company, I got the following spam email. This is a perfect example of low quality work, at a low price that tends to yield mediocre results and make a mockery of the industry.

      -----
      We’ve good work experience with number of clients in US,UK and AU.

      Monthly Task and responsibilities: -
      1. 150 Directory submissions
      2. 10 Social Bookmarking Submissions
      3. 10 Article Submissions (1 article x 10 article directories)
      4. 10 Press Release Submissions (1 press release x 10 press release websites)
      5. 10 Blog Submissions
      6. 1 unique, 400 word article written
      7. 1 unique, 400 word press releases
      8. 15 One Way back links with mix PR
      9. Meta tags changes suggestions
      10. Keyword research
      11. Competitor Analysis
      12. Heading tag changes
      13. Alt tag changes
      14. Interlinking wherever required.
      15 Keyword density in site content.
      16. HTML Site Map
      17. XML site map and Submission in webmaster tool
      Our Best rates for this are: - USD 150 per month per project at beginning of every month.

      ----

      On the other hand, if you want a SEO freelancer or agency to do high level link building, create viral content, develop industry relationships for their niche, it's going to cost you a good $2,000/month minimum. And........ it could take 8 to 12 months to really see quality results.

      Which one will a small business choose? $24,000 over the course of a year, or a $150/mo service that may boost you temporarily , but in the long run really hurt your website's reputation.

      If a SEO agency has 100 accounts, can they really engage in link building techniques like reclamation, broken link building, relationship based linking etc? Probably not.

      Many agencies out there rely on blog networks and paid links, it's the only way to manage it all. I can imagine they are sh****ng bricks right now. Only a small number of quality firms can do it right.

      The way I see it, being in the business since 2004 a good SEO/Internet Marketing person needs to understand all of the following , not just how to construct link schemes that reply on auto-posting software.

      You'll need to know:

      *Google Analytics (note: look at all of the social reporting they have added recently, even a back link reporting tool under the SOCIAL menu).

      *Pay Per Click Management

      *Quality Link Building (ex. What's now referred to as inbound marketing).

      *Conversion Rate Optimization

      *Copywriting

      *Technical On-site SEO

      *Social Media platforms, relationship discovery, outreach and management.

      .....and the list goes on.

      That is a lot of disciplines to keep up with. What I've learned after years of visiting forums is to go straight to the top sources (ex. Industry leader blogs) and learn that way from the big dogs.

      You have to be a "real" person today. Imagine trying to continue using 4 or 5 different online personas, good luck getting any social credibility.

      Look at this article I found off Inbound.org's list , it's called:

      Google Penguin Creates Mass Unemployment In India

      A couple of excerpts:

      "Today internet workers protested outside Google Mumbai. Google’s recent algorithm change (called Penguin) has created widespread unemployment in Mumbai, Delhi and Bangalore. The Penguin update effected low quality SEO/link building services, much of which was being outsourced by the US. It is estimated that 80% of the worlds link building was carried out in India, many of the top SEO firms in the UK and Europe outsourcing work here. They are now having to change the way they work and find new solutions, many not having the knowledge themselves."

      "One Indian ‘SEO Expert’, Steve Patel, used to work 15 hour per day ‘spinning’ content and uploading it to a large network of sites for US/UK clients. His youngest son, Ashwad (6yrs), had also been taught how to link build. ”Ashwad was getting very good on programmes like Xrummer, but now his future is in jeopardy”"

      That's my take. For the few who dedicate themselves to taking the high road, they will continue to find opportunities.
      There are some very good SEO firms in Mumbai and most definitely, the article link you found has no proof of it's reality.

      SEO will never be dead either in Mumbai or anywhere else.

      Ronak.
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  • Profile picture of the author Tadresources
    Whenever I see someone post or write about how ""IM is dead" or ask "Is IM dead?" I roll my eyes. IM is always evolving, but as long as there is an internet people will be trying to make money online through IM and other methods.
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  • Profile picture of the author Rus Sells
    Branding is the new/old SEO. The sooner some people realize this the better off they will be. The rest comes naturally when you start concentrating on building your brand.
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  • Profile picture of the author mustbecrap
    I think the overall key when dealing with inbound links is to stay away from trash and go for quality.. After all trash is usually cheap (which is why it looks appealing), quality usually isn't.

    But I am guilty of falling for some of this in recent times, I have done some stupid things recently, in fact I am grateful for penguin as it has woken me up to the trap I was headed down. I have gotten a little bit off track recently, its all my own fault.. But yet again I even brought a back-link package only a couple of days ago thinking it was a good purchase (yes it was cheap - I am an idiot), but now that I realize what they are doing I am just not going to use it, I would rather just throw the money away then use the package as in the end is would be less painful.

    I actually have 2 sites that have only had maybe 5 inbound links to each site in the past 5 years (no joke, one site maybe only got two when i first put it up) but they sometimes rank higher then the main site. The only reason I can put it down to is site structure, quality links, and writing for the product and not for search. Which for me basically means write the content as if I had nothing to sell, what can I give to the reader, not what can I give to the search engine...

    So my strategy has mostly always been to think about purpose, why am I doing this, is it for search or people, I will always focus some of my time on what I call seo (which is a term I use loosely these days), but I have and I will mostly always remain on people, this is partly why I believe most of my sites except one have moved up not down recently...

    But I admit I have been a little bit concerned as I did do some stupid back linking for a small period, thankfully penguin came along and made me wake up to myself, and lucky enough my stupidity has not done any damage - except maybe one site, but that's life (thats what I get for being an idot_)



    mbc
    .
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  • Profile picture of the author MarkLee743
    Hi Steve Weber,

    Thanks for sharing informative post really i enjoyed a lot by reading this.
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    Wish You Happy New Year 2018 in Advance

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