Back in 2011 I had been tinkering with getting help with my search engine optimization (SEO) settings. During that tinkering I tooled around with various offers of help that I found on the web.
I had found that some services were a waste of money and did nothing more than what I already was doing, while other services, while testing out some things, did not seem to pan out.
In fact I discovered in one test that despite testing my SEO options with Attracta, it seemed that in the process they had set up a sitemap for my website over on their site “for me” and set up a robots file on my site that redirected search engines to their site, to a sitemap representing my site. (Huh?)
Oh and BTW it did not help. In fact my traffic declined during the time my sitemap was hosted on their site. Whether that was bad timing, luck of the draw or what have you, who knows. But once I got my sitemap back, my traffic (back then) picked up.
Needless to say that after a lengthy conversation in the comments section with someone from Attracta, I never gave the “service” another thought. And it seems that most offers for SEO improvement don’t seem to generate what most site owners might want. But that’s just my opinion.
After that, Attracta was totally out of my mind… until this year. That is because I started getting sale pitch emails from Attracta again. Crap…
The emails had titles like “Our most powerful links yet,” advertising the purchase of links. (I presume all this “help” is not free.)
Then there’s “You’re invited – new feature launch party at Attracta” which boasts about an ad widget. (Um, got one for free here from WP)
A few weeks later I received the “links” email again.
But the most telling email of them all, proving to myself at least, that this is nothing I am interested in… was this latest email title:
“Get a PageRank 7 link”
The email claims they were going through their customer list… huh. And they’re pitching getting listed in “the Attracta Business Directory ” and such through the different emails.
Here’s the curious thing about that last email… Last time I checked in on my SEO resources, I am under the belief that Google is no longer paying any attention to PageRanks any more. Which is why it’s been several months since they stopped ranking pages with PageRanks.
Um… duh? Actually I am being generous with the term “several months.” It is now nearly mid-2015, and back in late-2013 it was being noted that PageRank is Dead.
You can make your own judgement call from that, but for me, yet again, Attracta does nothing for its image and I don’t wish to play on this slippery slope of Purhcased Internet SEO. But that’s just me.
What SEO I do know…
You can submit your own websites to the search engines like Google and Yahoo. You don’t need to pay anyone for that.
That if you decide to start a website in a heavily populated niche, you are most likely screwed… unless it is just something fun for you and your buddies. Then have at.
If you choose some subject niche no one else is specializing in, you will do well!
Proper linking and recommended SEO formatting is your best approach.
Well played social networking will work wonders for you. Meaning if you have friends on the web that will help propagate your content, you’ll be fine. (Don’t expect personal, close friends or family to help. They don’t get this web thing, or it’s not that important to them. That’s not a dig on them, I’m just saying, don’t get your hopes up. And don’t badger them either! Well, too much.)
Lucky timing with what or when you post to your site or various social networks can be critical. (If you see something trending, it’s too late for the smaller site.) I’ve observed some well positioned webmasters will post an article, then the next day tweet it, and the day after that Facebook it. Then they find a related article from half to a full year past and resend that too.
Don’t fall for sales pitches. I have had friends take note that the offers that FB makes page owners don’t seem to pan out.
Also know this: As a webmaster… your site’s CEO… the author… or whatever you want to call yourself, and you pay attention to some of the nitty gritty details about your website traffic, you know how fickle web surfers can be. You might get the attention of a thousand people on a good day and maybe ten will stick around. If you’re lucky. (Then again, do that enough times and time is your friend.)
If you pay attention, you’ll see the “National Enquirer” like titles that get the traffic… “After I dropped the bomb, you won’t believe what happened next!” Or “I was shocked what happened next, after this…”
I personally have higher morals than that and try not to veer that way, but if you don’t care, then you should be good. It’s the teaser or question titles that seem to be the big thing these days. For now. Oh, and my complete favorite (not!), is “what (thing) are you” quizzes. Give me a break.
Make your headline sing, back it up with great content “above the fold” and don’t get spammy in your links, keywords or how you pitch your site, and you should be as fine as you can be or that Google allows.
Be a good writer, (unlike myself!) and write great content that helps or engages readers. I have found there are two kinds of readers. Those with no time and only read the headline then click on your source links, and those who love what you have to say and read through your entire piece. (Hey, if you’re down here, THANKS!).
Wrapping up, I don’t trust SEO sales pitches. If they were that good, they would not need to be spamming the little guy.
Internet SEO is magic that Google allows to happen. And they usually allow it for big brand names, like those who fund their advertising programs. The rest of us are just lucky to still be out here in this wild west of an internet, having fun and spouting our words.
(@Bruce_Simmons on Twitter) Where I spout in 140 letters or less.