So, you think you know SEO? You don't! This article explains why we all suck ...

by JamesJeffery 29 replies
I read this article last night published by SEO Theory and I have to agree with him.

Why you cannot reverse engineer Google’s algorithm

Enjoy, there is so much truth in that one article.
#search engine optimization #article #explains #seo
  • Profile picture of the author Andyhenry
    Most of that article is egoic waffle.

    Of course no-one knows what all the algorithm elements are each day.

    Only an idiot would claim they know it all.

    That's just common-sense isn't it?

    The only place you'll see someone tell you they know it all is whereever someone is selling something. No normal person would be stupid enough to claim such nonsense so having a pop at the 'community' and saying that people rarely discuss 'weight' of ranking factors and in the next breath saying that even if they did they're wasting their time - doesn't say anything.

    That article is just another example of an SEOer wanting to sound like they're better than the others in their community.

    Why? What would be the point of such a negative post? - EGO.

    The article says nothing new and bases its content on ridiculing the fact that other people don't know everything - what a revolutionary concept.

    I think he'd be doing people a much better service by sharing his perspectives on best practice rather than criticising everyone else for what they say/do.

    Why make yourself out to be an expert but do it by trying to make your peers look bad - that doesn't really help anyone.
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    • Profile picture of the author JamesJeffery
      Originally Posted by Andyhenry View Post

      Most of that article is egoic waffle.

      Of course no-one knows what all the algorithm elements are each day.

      Only an idiot would claim they know it all.

      That's just common-sense isn't it?

      The only place you'll see someone tell you they know it all is whereever someone is selling something. No normal person would be stupid enough to claim such nonsense so having a pop at the 'community' and saying that people rarely discuss 'weight' of ranking factors and in the next breath saying that even if they did they're wasting their time - doesn't say anything.

      That article is just another example of an SEOer wanting to sound like they're better than the others in their community.

      Why? What would be the point of such a negative post? - EGO.

      The article says nothing new and bases its content on ridiculing the fact that other people don't know everything - what a revolutionary concept.

      I think he'd be doing people a much better service by sharing his perspectives on best practice rather than criticising everyone else for what they say/do.

      Why make yourself out to be an expert but do it by trying to make your peers look bad - that doesn't really help anyone.
      I disagree.

      I think what the author is trying to say is people assume link building is the most important factor and have been mislead by bigger names to believe that certain SEO stratergies are "the only thing that works". Look around most IM forums and you will see people saying "backlinks".

      Obviously nobody will ever understand the Google algorithm, but with references from Matt Cutts and other Google employees which states the algorithm is constantly changing on a weekly basis it seems pretty logical that Google are not going to allow marketers to get ahead of them.

      If link building was an important factor, it isn't as important no more because that would mean marketers could abuse and profit.

      There are certain things that currently work. But we don't know why or how they work. We just know they work and that's all we will ever know.

      But it opened my eyes because it took a totally different perspective on the view of SEO.

      Link building works because every marketer and his dog are doing it. It's not to say it's a key factor. But there could be some ranking factors that people miss, and if a marketer was to stumble on them he could shoot ahead of competition.

      Who knows. I think it's a great article though.
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      • Profile picture of the author Andyhenry
        Originally Posted by JamesJeffery View Post

        If link building was an important factor, it isn't as important no more because that would mean marketers could abuse and profit.
        I've heard that arguement many times over the years..... However.....

        I have always been able to get ANY clients site ranked top for their chosen keywords/phrases with ONLY links.

        They don't need the content ANYWHERE on their site for me to get them top rankings.

        So while I don't purport to understand how Google works - Links DO work, have worked for many years (at least 10 years for me) and it would be crazy to say that they're not relevant.

        Like I say - in MY experience I've been able to ignore ALL other factors and get great results so anyone who tells me that links are not an important factor are saying the exact opposite of what my experience shows me.

        (sidenote: obviously I'm not saying that ignoring content and meta data is a good idea - but I am making the point that links have and do make a big difference - in my experience, regardless of what anyone saying they know better tells me)

        Andy
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      • Profile picture of the author yukon
        [DELETED]
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        • Profile picture of the author JamesJeffery
          Originally Posted by yukon View Post

          If you believe Matt you'll believe anything.

          So, JCP didn't pull a fast one on Google? They would have lasted longer If they wasn't narked on.

          What about the other billions of web pages doing the same as JCP, why havn't they dropped in the SERPs, the answer is Google isn't half as complex as they BS about.

          Does this still make you believe G is so complex?

          http://www.warriorforum.com/adsense-...blocklist.html
          o_0. That's funny. Now they've put it like that they don't seem so complex after all.
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      • Profile picture of the author bay37
        Originally Posted by JamesJeffery View Post

        There are certain things that currently work. But we don't know why or how they work. We just know they work and that's all we will ever know.
        You are so over thinking this.

        Fact - there are things that have worked for years and still work to this day.

        Do stuff that you have tested and had good results with and make money! Everythign else is nonsense and a waste of time (just like that article - pointless).
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  • Profile picture of the author Mike Grant
    I've never seen an seo blog have so much content with such little interlinking.
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    • Profile picture of the author Diane S
      Originally Posted by mgtarheels View Post

      I've never seen an seo blog have so much content with such little interlinking.
      Wow, that alone speaks volumes about the credibility of the author on this topic.
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      • Profile picture of the author Mike Anthony
        Originally Posted by Diane S View Post

        Wow, that alone speaks volumes about the credibility of the author on this topic.
        Not sure what you guys are talking about. If you mean backlinks his home page alone has over 600
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        • Profile picture of the author Mike Grant
          Originally Posted by Mike Anthony View Post

          Not sure what you guys are talking about. If you mean backlinks his home page alone has over 600
          Nope, we mean interlinking within the site.
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          • Profile picture of the author Tom Goodwin
            Originally Posted by mgtarheels View Post

            Nope, we mean interlinking within the site.
            Ah...I missed this thread about Mr. Hobbit himself. I really didn't know that grown men got together in Red Roof Inns to play Dungeons and Dragons until I found his blogs. No, i'm not talking about a video game, but people sitting around a table and fantasizing about being an Elf or some such thing.

            If you guys want a very funny read,
            HTML Code:
            http://www.seo-theory.com/2011/02/16/to-the-kind-souls-at-warrior-forum/
            Perhaps he got a linkback to his post.

            I guess all you guys are famous now.
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            • Profile picture of the author Mike Grant
              Originally Posted by Tom Goodwin View Post

              Ah...I missed this thread about Mr. Hobbit himself. I really didn't know that grown men got together in Red Roof Inns to play Dungeons and Dragons until I found his blogs. No, i'm not talking about a video game, but people sitting around a table and fantasizing about being an Elf or some such thing.

              If you guys want a very funny read,
              HTML Code:
              http://www.seo-theory.com/2011/02/16/to-the-kind-souls-at-warrior-forum/
              Perhaps he got a linkback to his post.

              I guess all you guys are famous now.
              LMAO

              Seems someone got a bit butthurt about the comments made in this thread.
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  • Profile picture of the author hilhilginger
    I have just read the article through your link posted here. Absolutely great article for it said almost everything regarding the google algorithm. Inktomi problem is explained very clearly and it was a new thing i ever know in SEO. Thanks
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  • Profile picture of the author JamesJeffery
    Hey Andy,

    I agree with what you are saying. Link building does work. Maybe that's because we know no other way because we stick with what works.

    What I should have added is it's not worth worrying about. If we worry to much about how something works we end up failing at everything else.
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    • Profile picture of the author Andyhenry
      Originally Posted by JamesJeffery View Post

      Hey Andy,

      I agree with what you are saying. Link building does work. Maybe that's because we know no other way because we stick with what works.

      What I should have added is it's not worth worrying about. If we worry to much about how something works we end up failing at everything else.
      Ok - that's different.

      I don't worry about any of this. In fact, if the internet got switched off tomorrow I think I'd be relieved rather than anything.

      But I do care about 'what works' as I don't like to waste my time taking actions that I don't know will make a difference, so I tend to test ALL options and then focus on what works and add mix things up so that I'm never just doing one main thing. Even with linking I still happily pay other people to let me get links on their networks and sites because that's something I don't have control over any other way. I build my own networks of sites so that ultimately I have complete control over one element of my strategy - but I always use others too since having all your eggs in one basket that Google or anyone else can kill just doesn't make sense.

      The same as I would never just sell stuff in the WSO section since Allen could turn that off whenever he wants.

      Andy
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      • Profile picture of the author 4morereferrals
        Obviously nobody will ever understand the Google algorithm, but with references from Matt Cutts and other Google employees which states the algorithm is constantly changing on a weekly basis it seems pretty logical that Google are not going to allow marketers to get ahead of them.
        Yup they were waaaay ahead of ol JC Penny and their minions ... way ahead.

        A known blk hat-ter big name company on their watch list 3 times prior ... but it wasnt till they were outed by NYT before action applied - and the real damage only occurred after MANUAL intervention.

        the current change is all over the map and the serps reveal more of the same ol tripe on the first page - just a different url.
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  • Profile picture of the author Tom L
    Stating the obvious in so many words... now that's what I would call a skill.

    Of course no one completely reverse engineer the algorithm unless they actually see it... also as changes are being made this becomes even harder.

    This does not mean that we cannot get our pages ranked as a lot of the things that worked a year or two ago (white hat) still work now.

    It's the black hat ways which are getting hit the most, and I say good.
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  • Profile picture of the author faysal969
    Originally Posted by JamesJeffery View Post

    I read this article last night published by SEO Theory and I have to agree with him.

    Why you cannot reverse engineer Google’s algorithm

    Enjoy, there is so much truth in that one article.
    I believe no one never knows every thing about any matter. If any body says he/she knows every thing then he/she either knows nothing or lying.

    thank you for sharing the article.
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  • Profile picture of the author dp40oz
    "Of course, some people will be quick to point out that for many queries the results are pretty stable. Hence, if the results are the same today, tomorrow, and next week, we can still analyze them and derive some insight into what Google and Bing are doing. Right? Wrong. It doesn’t work that way."

    Yes it does! Good article but thats exactly how SEO works. He uses the example there are many different ways to drive from New York to LA, sure but as long as you know you need to get to LA thats the point. The Google algorithm may change every second but if it ends up with the same results then of course you can start to figure things out. Will we never know that exact algorithm? No of course not, but thats not really necessary. The point is to know the basic gist of how it consistently determines rankings.

    Maybe today links are weighted most out of the 1000 other ranking factors, maybe links become weighted 3rd tomorrow. As long as you know they'll always be weighted heavily otherwise the whole search engine would have completely different results, well then you've figured something out.
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    • Profile picture of the author Jordan Kovats
      Personally, I could care less about what is in the algorithm. I just need to know what works, and do it. If it was build 1000 links get to here...then I do it. If it was post 25 articles, then I would do it. Besides getting SEO knowledge, the hardest part of it is doing the work. It requires effort.
      I have been doing this for a few years now, and have successfully ranked every site I have worked on. No so called algorithmic changes have negatively affected anything I have done, only helped. So, keep tweaking the algorithm all you want. Personally, I don't see too much shuffling of the deck in the areas I work. Same sites hanging around the first 2 pages, some ocassionally shuffling up, and some occasionally shuffling down. And once in a while, a new kid on the block comes by to play. Otherwise, the more things change, the more they stay the same.
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    • Profile picture of the author Mike Anthony
      I read enough and gave up after he stated links never mattered. I see this kind of thing a lot from non programmers. They are in awe of Google. They do everything but swear that Google created the universe.

      Don't get too blown away with technology. Theres yet to be any that wasn't invented by a human being.

      Google is not some mystical blackbox that no one can figure out. if the vital weight changed as much as the article implies we would see sites dancing all over the place in every search. Most of us SEO types have been monitoring serps all of last year with no huge changes. Sure some sites bounce down and around but by and large most sites in the serps I track stay on the front page

      If it were such a mystery how would SEOs all over the world get their sites ranked? Many of us here would have to change jobs if we had no idea
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  • Profile picture of the author JackPowers
    The last algo update seems to have hit the target pretty well - low quality linkbuilding, but it doesn't mean the SERPS improve for that reason.

    Links will always be the key of any search engine or otherwise we would be back to keyword stuffing again.
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  • Profile picture of the author GeorgR.
    I stopped halfway through it. It started to sound like "...and then it became self aware due to the incredible complexity" etc. Cyper punk/Terminator blah blah.

    While i agree that google's "algorithm" might be complex and MANY factors influencing each other, so do i believe that ESSENTIALLY the logic behind it is very simple.

    There is "authority" and there is relationships. This is my OWN interpretation, but i am pretty sure that's how it works.

    Site getting assigned authority and subject relevancy. This is determined by on-site factors and content....AND how many related sites and clusters (web 2.0, forums etc.) are linking to and mentioning the site(s).

    Rocket science? Hardly.

    So complex that no one can understand it anymore? Hardly.

    Of course, there are the other several hundred factors, all playing SOME part...but in essence i THINK its not that complex as the poster wants it to be.
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  • Profile picture of the author yukon
    Yea, Google is complex, lol.

    Check this out.

    Proves how well the JCP backlinks worked & Google doesn't have a clue until a human reports the site.
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  • Profile picture of the author Jackie Walters
    WOW, now I am scared, I do so hope you are wrong. I need this to work and am working very hard at it.
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  • Profile picture of the author TZ
    Was there anything new in that article? If so, I missed it.

    This whole meme of, "so and so KNOWS SEO", or "this guy is an SEO expert", makes me want to throw up in my mouth.

    Like SEO is really some sort of difficult process to get your head around. It's a simple as falling off a truck - a turnip truck.

    What seperates the full-timers from the weekenders is allot of hard work, and experience from learning what DOESN'T work.

    There are no tricks to SEO! There are some automations that can help, but there is no silver bullet, or golden goose.
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    • Profile picture of the author attorneydavid
      The counter reply article is hilarious and lengthly. Next time I'm needing free content I'll post a semi-clueless article post it on the warriorforum and then comment about all the responses.
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    • Profile picture of the author yukon
      Originally Posted by TZ View Post

      Was there anything new in that article? If so, I missed it.

      This whole meme of, "so and so KNOWS SEO", or "this guy is an SEO expert", makes me want to throw up in my mouth.

      Like SEO is really some sort of difficult process to get your head around. It's a simple as falling off a truck - a turnip truck.

      What seperates the full-timers from the weekenders is allot of hard work, and experience from learning what DOESN'T work.

      There are no tricks to SEO! There are some automations that can help, but there is no silver bullet, or golden goose.
      LMAO!

      That was funny!
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