Is SEO Decietful? An Analogy to Consider…
June 2, 2008
I just posted this over as a comment on the blog of a colleague… He mentioned how many people consider SEO to be deceitful, and then went on to compare it to a deceitful piece of direct mail he recently received. I think Black Hat SEO in many cases is “deceitful”, but white hat SEO for the most part isn’t. I think its just more putting your best foot forward. In that case, its once again more like traditional PR.
I don’t share the thought though of those who say SEM/SEO is deceitful. I view it as simply understanding what the search engines want and giving it to them… Its sort of like wearing a nice outfit to a big interview. Its not outright lying or intentionally deceiving, but rather just putting your best foot forward. The interviewer knows you don’t wear suits everywhere you go 🙂
Nowadays I think everyone must consider the source in all things. That’s a skill that is much needed in this age of multitudes of media outlets across different mediums. All information is biased, in some way.
Deceiving is having a client who sells one product and optimizing for an unrelated or very loosely related keyword. Who has time for that? Way too inefficient. Instead, most of the “SEO” that I see is instead simply elaborating a bit more than what might be appropriate or deserving if there weren’t search engines to consider. Maybe without SEO I would write 3 paragraphs of text about an accounting firm’s year-end tax preparation services, whereas with search engines to consider I write 5 and include a more to-the-point TITLE tag and H1, and then work a little harder to make sure other sites know about it. That’s not deceiving. That’s just doing a better job, doing more than otherwise is “necessary”, and perhaps trying harder.
Thoughts in agreement? Thoughts to the contrary?