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Running your business as though Google doesn't exist
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paul
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PostPosted: Tue May 08, 2012 11:57 am    Post subject: Running your business as though Google doesn't exist Reply with quote

Interesting article here:

http://www.webpronews.com/can-you-build-a-business-without-google-traffic-2012-05

I think there's a good message to be learnt here. If we are able to run viable online businesses even without Google, then if you ever get 'hit' by a Google update, then you'll be more able than most to weather the storm.

But how realistic is it to run an online business as though Google doesn't exist?
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PostPosted: Wed May 16, 2012 2:03 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

I never really worried to much about SEO for my sites but mainly focussed on the right content. And i have to see the latest google update brings me about 25% more traffic (for now)

So maybe i get rewarded. Razz

But yeah i don't think my sites would do any where so good without google.

But on the other hand if we would not rely on google then maybe users would use another engine because google is what it is now because companies rely on it.
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PostPosted: Thu May 17, 2012 6:01 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

But how realistic is it to run an online business as though Google doesn't exist?



Good question! I'm working on that myself. Not because I've encountered penalties, but because I don't want all my eggs in one basket - I think we talked about this the other day.

I do think it will take time to build up because Google is so pervasive. Those starting out won't have Google traffic anyway, so it's no loss. Easier to incorporate changes in the beginning to change directions mid-stream. But for those have come to depend upon them, weaning off is difficult.

I do believe it's possible to run a business sans Google, or at least to rely less upon them. Developing social media skills is one way to do it. Creating quality content that people will tell others about is another (although, Google will pick up on those things and send traffic, anyway).

So perhaps instead of replacing Google, the key might be to put less importance on them and focus on the customer, who will in turn, help tell others by sharing back links, Facebook likes, etc.

By mastering that, perhaps we'll master the Big G as well.
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PostPosted: Thu May 17, 2012 6:23 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Sure social media are important.

But have said that search engine visits seem to make more sales (% wise).

So sure things like Twitter, Facebook and Pinterest bring in traffic but for me that traffic doesn't perform nearly as good as google traffic.
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Kay
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PostPosted: Thu May 17, 2012 6:37 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Any business that relies on Google SERPs these days is in a very precarious position. Most experienced webmasters I know are looking towards building their traffic from other means.

Even trying to do it via link building can be a bit dangerous since Penguin. This raises the question, other than social media how can you best get traffic to your site?

Guest blogging isn't a bad way, IMO. If you write something interesting and you get a link in your author's bio, people might look at your site because they're interested in you and what you have to say.

There are loads of other ways, of course - please list your ideas.

In some ways, I'm pleased with what the Penguin has done. With any luck it could could lead to the death of these odious link building companies who try to score links by hiring people to spam forums and blogs. One lives in hope. Smile
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PostPosted: Thu May 17, 2012 8:06 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

...but has Penguin been effective?

From what I've read, I get the impression that there are many more spammy sites making their way into the SERPs and a lot of perfectly legitimate sites getting hit.

As for ways to get traffic other than through Google, I'm increasingly at a loss other than creating quality content, blogging and social media. I'm not even sure how 'safe' guest blogging is these days.

On the one hand we have this:

Google Panda makes guest blogging essential

But on the other we have this:

Guest blogging leads to unnatural links detected message

Our main focus right now is on creating good content in the hope that Google will take note and favour us more accordingly. Of course, I'm not relying on it. We need to have a model that's sustainable whether or not we get any Google traffic whatsoever.
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PostPosted: Thu May 17, 2012 8:17 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Content is king.

if you focus is on good content that attracts visitors then we all should be just fine.

Trying to trick the system just takes a lot of time and then google and others find a way to punish us for it.
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Kay
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PostPosted: Thu May 17, 2012 8:32 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Paul, perhaps I didn't make my point clear. I wasn't suggesting guest blogging as a way to increase links to your site and thus hope for a better ranking in the SEs. I was saying that it could be a good way to increase traffic. Nothing to do with in-bounds links, SERPs or any of that kind of stuff.

If you do a good guest posting then you could be able to interest people in what you have to say. You can create traffic that way if they click through to read more of what you've been writing about. Assuming you're guest blogging on a site that gets traffic, of course. There's no reliance on the SEs with this strategy.

TBH, I'd not realised that the benefits of guest blogging were being hotly debated at the moment. I just pulled that out of my head as one good way to get more traffic without needing to get it from any SE.
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PostPosted: Thu May 17, 2012 10:29 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Kay wrote:
Paul, perhaps I didn't make my point clear. I wasn't suggesting guest blogging as a way to increase links to your site and thus hope for a better ranking in the SEs. I was saying that it could be a good way to increase traffic. Nothing to do with in-bounds links, SERPs or any of that kind of stuff.


Ah, OK... fair enough. There's a lot 'out there' about guest blogging as a means to tackle your performance in Google in a post-Panda world, so forgive me for making that assumption.

Kay wrote:
If you do a good guest posting then you could be able to interest people in what you have to say. You can create traffic that way if they click through to read more of what you've been writing about. Assuming you're guest blogging on a site that gets traffic, of course.


Indeed.

Kay wrote:
There's no reliance on the SEs with this strategy.


No, but it's a secondary, and potentially more important, factor (assuming you don't opt for 'nofollow' links).
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PostPosted: Fri May 18, 2012 12:04 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Quote:
No, but it's a secondary, and potentially more important, factor (assuming you don't opt for 'nofollow' links).


And the "nofollow" thing is a whole can of worms in itself. If you use nofollow on your site, you are telling G that the site is SEOd according to what G wants you to do - and paradoxically apparently doesn't like SEOd sites. Rolling Eyes Sometimes there's just no pleasing them. That's why I'm saying to go about your business without pandering to G and to try to reduce your reliance on them.

The world is changing, and an over-reliance on G is going to be very, very, dangerous when it does change. Panda, Penguin, et al are only the beginning of the story, and look at how people are squealing now. There is more to come. I would say, don't sit waiting for it to happen or to run around doing "how to recover from Panda/Penguin" strategies. Better to change tack to reduce your reliance on it.

Hey, it was good while it lasted. Smile
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PostPosted: Fri May 18, 2012 12:18 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

paul wrote:
...but has Penguin been effective?

From what I've read, I get the impression that there are many more spammy sites making their way into the SERPs and a lot of perfectly legitimate sites getting hit.

As for ways to get traffic other than through Google, I'm increasingly at a loss other than creating quality content, blogging and social media. I'm not even sure how 'safe' guest blogging is these days.

On the one hand we have this:

Google Panda makes guest blogging essential

But on the other we have this:

Guest blogging leads to unnatural links detected message

Our main focus right now is on creating good content in the hope that Google will take note and favour us more accordingly. Of course, I'm not relying on it. We need to have a model that's sustainable whether or not we get any Google traffic whatsoever.


I love guest blogging and do it partly for SEO purposes but much more to establish my personal brand, build relationships with other bloggers and to learn new things. Those are more important than the SEO for me.
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PostPosted: Fri May 18, 2012 12:21 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Quote:
As for ways to get traffic other than through Google, I'm increasingly at a loss other than creating quality content, blogging and social media.


There are countless ways to get traffic both off and online - create an opt-in email newsletter, post relevant comments on other people's blogs and forums, offer advice for free and hope it spreads by word of mouth, etc. There are loads of cheap offline things you can do as well. I give away pens with my site's URL on them, and there are heaps of other things you can do too.

Anyway, who cares about traffic? What you want is targeted traffic, ie traffic that converts. The only reason I can see to care about the volume of traffic is if you're selling advertising based on the number of ad impressions, or to a dumb advertiser who is impressed by traffic volume.
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PostPosted: Fri May 18, 2012 1:59 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

All great ideas, Kay, but even collectively I find they don't bring anything like as much as Google (and that's even when we're less in favour!).
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PostPosted: Fri May 18, 2012 2:18 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Me too, Paul. The vast majority of my traffic still comes from G. I'm not saying that I've cut my bonds with them. It's just that instead of running around trying to please them - in the knowledge that everything could change again tomorrow - it's perhaps a better use of time and effort to try to reduce dependence on them.

Yes, they are still top dog. But they won't be for ever. Those sites who followed G's every whim without at least trying to make contingency plans for when G dumps them in the dung, will be hit hardest. That's why I think it's better to concentrate on building customers from other sources rather than piddling about trying to meet G's funny ideas about what kind of SEO is acceptable.
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PostPosted: Fri May 18, 2012 2:34 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Yep... I think we're singing from the same hymn sheet. Smile
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