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Old 07-05-2004   #1
Andy AtkinsKruger
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Do search engines really dislike SEOs?

Can anyone tell me - do search engines think that search engine marketing companies are a nuisance - or helping?

Coming from a PR background, I am reminded of journalists not wanting to acknowledge the benefit and role of PR professionals. Better informed journalism is often the result of good clear communication from the organisation concerned.

I appreciate there's a lot of spam and misinformation out there - but there are also many trying to approach this business with a high degree of professionalism.

Surely it helps the relevancy of search engine results if search engine optimisers work - ethically - on the greatest number of sites? And pay per click will grow through agencies who already have the trust of their clients?
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Old 07-05-2004   #2
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>Surely it helps the relevancy of search engine results if search engine optimisers work - ethically - on the greatest number of sites?

Honestly as soon as you let that thought enter your head you are dead in the water. Imho there is no love coming from the SE's to the SEO's, none.

Having said that it is no excuse to behave badly on the part of SEO's, if there is moral high ground to be claimed I think it is up to us to claim it, turn the other cheek and accept that others don't see things the way that you do and_never_will.
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Old 07-05-2004   #3
Chris Sherman
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Andy AtkinsKruger
Can anyone tell me - do search engines think that search engine marketing companies are a nuisance - or helping?

Surely it helps the relevancy of search engine results if search engine optimisers work - ethically - on the greatest number of sites? And pay per click will grow through agencies who already have the trust of their clients?
The search engines recognize good, ethical search marketing firms and for the most part value the work that they do. You only need look at the sponsors of SEMPO to see tangible evidence of this support -- they wouldn't be spending money or time on this organization if they didn't support quality search marketing efforts.

They're also willing to spend time answering questions from the search marketing community, through forums like this one. We're just completing the process of getting numerous reps from all of the major search engines on board, and you'll be seeing them posting on a regular basis going forward.
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Old 07-05-2004   #4
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"The search engines recognize good, ethical search marketing firms and for the most part value the work that they do. You only need look at the sponsors of SEMPO to see tangible evidence of this support"

Are you stating that sponsership by search engines of the SEMPO <cough>Organisation</cough> implies that they recognise the members of SEMPO are "good, ethical search marketing" firms?
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Old 07-05-2004   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by NFFC
Are you stating that sponsership by search engines of the SEMPO <cough>Organisation</cough> implies that they recognise the members of SEMPO are "good, ethical search marketing" firms?
I think their involvement with SEMPO, having Reps at SEW and other Forums, plus support and involvement with the SESConference is a statement that they don't see the whole field as adversaries. In a way, it ensures that so we aren't a "nuisance" by giving helpful information and clarifying off the wall speculation. It is a way of keeping a dialogue going so that silence doesn't lead to polarization.
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Old 07-05-2004   #6
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>I think their involvement with SEMPO

I think it was a Yes or No question, what do you say?
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Old 07-05-2004   #7
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For me, it's neither a yes or a no answer. My understanding of SEMPO as an organization is that anyone can join and will not be screened for their practices. So, I would expect that the SE's know that and accept us warts and all.
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Old 07-05-2004   #8
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>us

I was with you till that, your us or my us?
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Old 07-05-2004   #9
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I used to manage the largest Scandinavian search engine and are still doing some consulting for some of the major portals in Europe on search in general and realations to the SEO community specifically.

When I managed Kvasir (the former name of the Scandinavian engine) in the late 90's most engines was not even aware that there was a SEO-community - or that the trade exsited. I remember one time when I arranged the first SEO-conference in Copenhagen and I called up Yahoo and asked them to join one of the panels - they simply did not grab the concept. I recall Yahoo saying: " Do people really optimize their sites for search engines ...? nahh, we don't think so" - so, they did not want to join. (that was before paid listings!)

However, much has changed since then. Yahoo knows we are here by now

There are people in the search engines that do not like what we do - even if it's ethically done and follow all guide lines, no doubt about that. They are the same kind of people that do not want companies to write press releases - and, from what I see they are a dying race.

Most of the people I meet at search engines and large portals today have an attitude that is much more in line with what Chris is saying: They do recognise the value good SEO can bring, but are also aware of the potential spam that it can bring along. They do want to deal with us but honestly, many of them are still very confused and unsecure about it all. They simply do not understand our business well enough.- Sure they understand search, but just not what we are doing and the value we bring in the chain.

Unsecure people can sometimes seem arrogant and I think that is what happens here - some times.
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Old 07-05-2004   #10
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Once again I think sliding the word ethical into search engine marketing is a bad call.

Search engines do not like SEO because search engines have problems finding quality content. commercial garbage lays over the top of good info.

most types of marketing that aim to manipulate search results aim to put commerce above information.

search engines want you to be able to find honest product information and reviews not:

1.) official site
2.) inner page of official site
3.) affiliate, product is great
4.) affiliate, product is wonderful
5.) affiliate, product is swell
6.) product is bogus, try our product instead
7.) affiliate, product is neato
8.) affiliate, amazing product (so long as your dog does not eat it)
9.) affiliate, product is better than sliced bread
10.) affiliate, i can't believe how happy my mom was with this gift for last Christmas
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Old 07-05-2004   #11
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I agree that engines do not want pure commercial results. Just like any good news or information source you need the right blend. I just don't agree with the rather general statement that they do not like SEOs. Personally, I do not find it to be so.

I see confused people. I see stupid decissions made because they don't understand what we do. And, I've seen jealous people, because we make more money than they do - but I just don't find that many people at the search engines that generally do not like SEOs.

I think we may be misunderstood but certanly not disliked by the engines the way some suggest. And, I think that's important to understand in order to move forward. Let's grab on to all the good people at the engines, extend the good communication we have here, at other good forums and at conferences.

I do think we are moving in the right direction.
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Old 07-05-2004   #12
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I supose my post was more in line with "search engine manipulators" more than search engine optimization people.

some good seo does block out lots of low quality spam, but at the end of the day most of the people paying the wages for seo are commercial interests. my statement was more that a primarily commercial shift in focus is not good for search engines.

most of the web does a somewhat decent job of self organizing, its just us evil commercial interests that search engines need to look out for.
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Old 07-05-2004   #13
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I have worked on many kinds of websites as an SEO - only some of them have been pure commercial in nature - I have also done work on governmental information sites, and I know of colleagues that helped get large and important reference online libraries optimized and indexed.

I know most of what SEOs do is commercial (thats where the money is!), so your point is well takes, I just had to point out that there is a great deal of non-commercial SEO-work being done too
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Old 07-05-2004   #14
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>search engines want

That isn't really the core issue; what the search engines want is an ever-increasing revenue stream and the more eyeballs they can grab the greater the potential is for capital growth.

Before the question can be answered whether or not search engines really dislike SEOs as a group I think we have to define what that group is and what and who it's comprised of.

>>your us or my us?

That is the core issue.

Unless the terms we're trying to use are understood and agreed upon there is no basis for a proper answer. In fact, there is no "one" group and there is no universal "us." Let's say, just for the sake of simplicity, that there are two. Given the assumption of that premise, the next issue is how much the different "usses" are willing to recognize and comprehend each other's existence and further, how much they're willing to acknowledge and communicate with each other.

>Reps

Keep your friends close, and your enemies closer.
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Old 07-05-2004   #15
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Two solid quotes here:

Quote:
Originally Posted by Mikkel deMib Svendsen
I do think we are moving in the right direction.
Quote:
Originally Posted by Marcia
Keep your friends close, and your enemies closer.
That is exactly what is being done. Marcia, I assume you selected the word "enemies" to describe the time when there was really a sentiment of "us versus them." Where an SEO figured out a loophole in a ranking algorithm and the Search Engines patched it up quickly. It was like a small war fought over virtual channels.

But as Mikkel pointed out, that sentiment is really no longer felt amongst the majority of SEOs (I think). Day by day, the attitude of "us versus them" is weakened.

So, do search engines really dislike SEOs? I think not as much as it was 1, 2, 5 years ago. Why? Because we now understand each other better. There are more channels of communication.
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Old 07-05-2004   #16
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I remember a large German portal I was consulting around 2001. They did some market research and estimated that the German SEO-market would take up several hundred million DMark. That was when they really started taking "us" seriously! Money talks. Basically, they wanted a piece of our pie. The pie that we baked i the middle of their kitchen and sold out of the back-door. Understandable.

Money aside, it did, for this portal, create the basis of a much better communication with the SEO-community. So, whatever the reason was, I think the outcome was good. Far from perfect, but better.
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Old 07-06-2004   #17
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So how do we improve communication with search engines?

Thanks for the debate - enlightening. As I said at the outset - it reminds me so much of the journalist - PR consultant debate. Journalists are supposed to seek out the truth - PR consultants are there to represent commercial interests. Sound familiar? Yet research has shown that even the most august of news outlets depend on PR consultants for much of their information.

With the 'Search' sector we are talking about an activity that is so new - we are all re-inventing it daily - so it's not surprising there is misunderstanding on both sides.

How can we break down the barriers between us so we can work better together?
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Old 07-06-2004   #18
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Quote:
Originally Posted by NFFC
I was with you till that, your us or my us?
Oops, by us I meant SEMPO since I'm a member. Well, I guess it applies to those of us at SEW Forums who are SEO/SEM's.
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Old 07-06-2004   #19
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In my opinion, Search Engine doesn't force to SEO Companies but they would like to get the quality of website which list on their database. That's their purpose. The top seo companies which sometimes I thought that they known Search Engine Companies very well to use the method which are ethic and right way which Search Engine like. But almost ranking which got from those top seo companies, mostly huge website that have good content because those site must be thought about conversion rates and Roi not only ranking. This kind of website is being liked by Search Engine.
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Old 07-06-2004   #20
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> How can we break down the barriers between us so we can work better together?

This thread is a good place to add to the process. Other places, in my oppinion, will be at the various conferences and other forums and trade groups.
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