I have been tasked to do search engine optimization for several sites that we develop. And for that reason I got to learn lots of things. Here are five of them.
- That websites who were built by people who have less preference on SEO or did not know about this stuff are much more difficult to optimize.
- That clients are more inclined to see results in a field where nothing is guaranteed. Analogous to stock quotes where advisors see the trend but other factors influence the stock prices. With this in mind, a common understanding must be clearly stated in every signed contract the scope and limitation of the project and remind clients that the ultimate goal is not number one ranking in Google but to improve site traffic in hopes to generate more revenue.
- That clients who have spoken to various vendors find themselves confused as to what is the real score; it’s a fact that many SEO providers adhere to a variety of beliefs when it comes to optimization. One says linking is important in Google than Yahoo!, no it’s otherwise, says the other. They disagree on the thought that putting targetted keywords to domain names make their websites more vulnerable to closer scrutiny by search engines. Or understanding that letter case and pluralization is not a big issue. And so on.
- That Search Engine Optimization is an art and not rocket science. There are checklists on how to do them, therefore nothing is secret. Tags, titles, descriptions, backlinks, quality content, yes everyone knows that. But what varies from one provider to the other is how someone performs SEO creatively.
- That clients are less inclined to perform SEO on documents that are sensitive for fear of being disclosed by us to other clients. Of course, we honor contracts and we won’t do such rip offs. The larger company the client is, the bigger bureaucracy we come across at, and the clients whose sites are the ones we built, stand the best chance of adhering to my recommendations. In that sense, I feel assured I get the blame if the performance is weak after 4 to 6 months, and not that company style guide that prevents them from doing my layout recommendations.