If you have ever gone so much as near the idea of making a website of your own, you’d know what SEO is. For those of you who haven’t, it’s basically some made-up sh*t claiming to put your website in the first page of Google’s search results- That’s the nuts and bolts of it, basically. Cutting to the chase, there’s a billion dollar industry that has propped up lately claiming to do SEO for all sorts of websites. Website owners shell out thousands of dollars to these companies hoping that they’ll recoup the cost once they are on top of the world, and by world, they mean Google search results. But really?
Search engine optimization is a technique- It’s claimed by almost every SEO firm that’s out there. But the reality is that it’s nothing but a big, fat lie. It’s no technique at all, unless we equate technique with scam, because that’s what all SEO business is: an elaborate, cleverly-marketed scam by a bunch of guys, somewhere in India or some other country, playing the pied piper and making the neophyte site owners dance to their dulcet tunes of a mindboggling success just around the corner. Let’s take a look at how this works.
The Mechanics of SEO:
Search engine optimization is a process based on algorithmic calculations done by super-fast Google processors after attaching value to certain pre-defined variables. Put simply, the engineers at Google have a mathematical formula by which they decide how to show search results. Needless to say, this formula is extremely complex, and Google does not disclose it to anyone at all. And the reason for this is simple: to prevent web owners from manipulating their way to the top of search results. When we go to Google and make a search, we expect it to show us the most relevant links. If the formula were out, the web owners could simply use it and get whatever-crap-they-have on the top, and within days, we will stop using search engines and Google will be out of business.
There is a genuine reason that Google is so jealously secretive about its formula. It has purposefully made it extremely complex, and it keeps changing it every now and then. Think of it this way: it’s the key to the country’s nuclear arsenal, and it works only if you have been able to reach the lock after typing a thousand different types of codes to the doors guarding it. It’s the question of life and death for Google. It’s the only thing that keeps the company alive. Ever used another search engine? No, why? Because their results are not what you want, and it’s because their formula is not as good as Google’s. The only reason Google lives and gets more than 98% of the internet search market is their bloody formula. It keeps them bloody alive.
Of SEO firms Now:
Where do the thousands of SEO firms fit in then against this Google’s insatiable hunger for secrecy? Well, here’s how SEO firms make fool of people. They claim that, by virtue of their experience, they have somehow discovered Google’s formula. They’ll tell you they have experimented so much that they have actually not only discovered Google’s formula but also worked it out. Yes, this is what every SEO firm, in one way or another, will tell you. There is actually a term for this claim. You know what it is? It’s infinite, absolute, utter, bloody non-sense- Yes, I just made it up and now it exists!
The claim of knowing Google’s formula is simply ludicrous for a number of reasons. To start with, Google employs more mathematicians than ten times the number of software engineers in your SEO fu*cking company. In fact, Google is the brainchild of two PHD mathematicians. By the way, do you know where they got their PHD from? It’s called Stan-fu*king-ford. And if you think that you could gang up with a couple of young computer graduates and beat the team of mathematicians that has simply revolutionized the world less by its computer techniques and more by its algorithmic formulas, go fu*king publish some papers and be in race for the Nobel Prize. There’s more money in that than doing SEO for people, and you stand a fu*cking good chance of winning it after having accomplished such a great feat. Descartes would be turning in his grave for not being able to kiss your a*s.
But why is then it such a big industry?
Yes, it’s true. SEO is a huge industry now. Billions of dollars change hands every year in this market, and universities have also put SEO on the list of their courses. The reason behind all this is not very complicated.
Your search engine ranking could be boosted by a series of small steps, which includes back-linking, on-page optimization, off-page optimization, right placement of hyperlinks, etc. If you don’t have all these things, you’ll be worse off than if you did. And here’s the catch. It assumes that you don’t have any of that. It assumes that the content on your website will still be the same, but the fact is that it won’t be after you hire an SEO company.
Yes, they’ll get somebody from Kenya or Bangladesh to write stuff for you and put it on another website to plant your backlinks, and by this, they displace the very first assumption because of which you hired them: that your site with the same material will be worth more. And now they have added to its material, more specifically, the content meant for its online marketing. But, and it’s an important but, why should you care if it works?
The Short answer: you should. Why? Because you could have done the same yourself. When you pay a marketing firm, you do it so that it could increase the worth of your brand without any corresponding increase in its value. If it increases the value, and then claims to have increased the worth it’s pretty pointless because you could have increased the value yourself. You paid them to increase the gap between the worth and the actual value, and that, in this case, will still be the same.
You could directly invest more money into increasing the value of your company. This way, you won’t have to lose the money that’ll go to the SEO firm’s profits after they have paid their writers. You can simply go on to sites like Upwork and Freelancer and get writers do some online marketing for you. Why pay a company extra bucks for that?
But if the SEO firm is itself on the top; it surely knows its stuff. No?
No. As I explained above, SEO involves a series of small steps. If a company ranks on the first page, it means merely that it has followed those steps, not that it knows the formula. And this is why it’s important: If you have been around for the past few years, you would have noticed something: the company that was on the top in 2010 is not even on the first page now. The same goes for the leading firms of 2011, 2012, 2013, 2014 and 2015. They all had their peak times and then they disappeared. Why?
Because, contrary to what they claimed, they did not know the formula. They implemented the simple, widely-known steps and were in luck to land on the right side of Google’s formula. And after they did, they decided to make money from their lucky landing. The point is if they were really good they’d be around even now, but that’s not the case. They were there because they were lucky, not because they knew the trick. And when that luck receded, so did their businesses.
And it’s one of the reasons it becomes all the more dangerous for you to use their services. When an SEO firm goes down, so does all the work it has done. It did whatever worked for it. But when Google’s algorithm stopped being on its side, all the work it had done became worthless. In one moment, all the dollars it charged its clients stopped delivering. Do you really want to risk your thousands of dollars and then see them gone down the drain in a second?
And the University courses:
Yes they exist, and they are also there for baking and Microsoft Office. If you really need a university course to tell you how to use Microsoft Office or bake a cake, then maybe these SEO firms are for you. But the fact is that most of us don’t. SEO could be done by almost anybody by following a couple of simple small steps.
The most important element of SEO is your online popularity, often connoted in the term ‘backlinks’. And here’s the biggest trick when it comes to backlinking: if your content is really good, it wouldn’t need any backlinking at all. The readers will themselves post its links on other sites and do your SEO for free. This is how news websites always stay on the first page. Their readers are always posting their links at other places because they find their content really valuable and want other people to read it. So instead of squandering money on these firms, maybe you should start working on your content. If you rule the world of content, you don’t need to worry a thing in the world of internet. Google will always show you first. Ever wondered why Wikipedia always comes first?
If you’d like me to write for you, simply ping me at firstname.lastname@example.org. 🙂