The wonderful article by Swami Ji (Thank you for this) inspired me to write my personal views on SEO.
SEO is an integral part of marketing and branding today (read Internet or social media marketing) and it has grown tremendously in last couple of years. Few years back; for us SEO was just keywords and Meta tags but Google has forced everyone to change their strategy and go beyond the basics.
From basics standpoint I think Google has simple rule, if you have most relevant data that user is looking for you must be listed on top. If you are searching for a ‘Dog’ then you should get most important sites about dogs on top and perhaps that’s why we always get Wikipedia listed on top of all the lists because it is consider as the most authenticated information on majority of topics.
Albeit, Google or for matter of fact all search providers have the best technology in the world, I believe they are still more a ‘business’ algorithms and programs; they are still not a natural. I think it is creating ‘consumerism’ on information and it is more like ‘Rich get Richer and poor get poorer’.
Today majority of search results (Except few like Wikipedia) are fabricated and are really not natural. Creative writing is no more ‘creative’ it is more mechanical. Creative writers first now list their keywords that they want to target and then they start framing sentences around that. It is absolutely neither a creative nor natural. They many times ‘spin’ (that means creating 100 articles from same contents) from single article.
I really doubt if SEO is helping quality of information to reach more users. Information should be accurate, useful and easily available but what we see is artificial and fabricated on majority of cases.
Let me explain this by an example, if John is a scientist and writes good articles on astronomy; do all search engines list his articles at top of search results without him making any extra efforts. I really don’t think so. He will not get listed on top or ‘clicked’; to achieve this he needs to spend lots of money and there is no limit to this, he can even spend his entire fortune in SEO. He needs to hire a web designing company who can design his website/blog which is search engine friendly; he needs SEO guy who can published his article on thousands of websites and bogs; he needs link building guy who will write dummy (nonsense) articles based on his topics and keywords and then publish on all possible places.
I am really not against SEO (how can me? It is my business) but as it happens with any technology; this is the other side of SEO. I am sure and I know that all search engines are making improvements so it gets more ‘natural’ rather ‘fabricated’. If you cross the limit they sometimes blacklist you as well. So be naturally fabricated and technically they call it ‘Grey-hat methods’ (Not a white-hat or Black-hat)