You are going to have to bare with me on this post because I have more questions than answers. But those of you who blog may be able to help me with a frustration that has been nagging at me for some time.
I know SEO (search engine optimization) pretty good. And I do make an attempt to apply SEO principles to this website. But, If you are a blogger and you know something about SEO, stop and think about this for a minute.
What is a Weblog (blog)? Let’s look at the Wikipedia definition of a Weblog:
“A blog is a discussion or informational site published on the WWW and consisting of posts typically displayed in reverse chronological order (the most recent post first). Until 2009 blogs were usually the work of a single individual, and often were themed on a single subject. Although not a requirement, most good quality blogs are interactive, allowing visitors to leave comments and even message each other via GUI widgets on the blogs, and it is this interactivity that distinguishes them from other static websites. In that sense, blogging can be seen as a form of social networking. Indeed, bloggers do not only produce content to post on their blogs, but also build social relations with their readers and other bloggers. Many blogs provide commentary on a particular subject; others function as more personal online diaries”.
So what do we have? This website is most definitely the work of a single individual. However, you will not find “the focus on a single theme”. I see that as a problem for the search engines. But I definitely do not find that as a problem for those who patronize this website. Do my readers want to read on the same theme or subject day after day after day? I don’t think so.
Do the search engines want a weblog to focus on a central theme. Yes, I believe they do. And there’s where the problem begins. Search engines won’t attach any “rank” to weblogs that ares not focused on one theme and readers of weblogs are not interested in weblogs that are created around a central theme because reading the same or similar content over and over is boring.
So that kills the common theme idea on a blog site. Good blog sites will have multiple themes and subject matter in order to maintain the interest of their readers. But those websites will perform poorly in search engine results.
“Good blogs are interactive and allow visitors to leave comments or even message other readers. In that sense, blogging can be thought of as a form of social networking”. Got that partially covered. But I’ll have to check into the “messaging” that Wikipedia mentions. If it can be done, I’ll do it. No problem. But let me say at this juncture that we need more social interaction on this website. I welcome your comments and you have been very good at providing those. I comb the site once a week looking for your questions and respond to those. Other than that, we have no interaction at all. Is this the way that you want it? I can create whatever you want.
My opinion is that I would prefer to know my audience better. How do we do that? I tell you what. We can try some things. Where else will you find a blog author and webmaster willing to take the time to interact with his audience? Messaging is rather impersonal. Here’s a couple of suggestions.
- I create a fan page for this website on Facebook and we can bounce ideas back and forth there with associated photos/video, status updates and whatever else. It’s still impersonal but not as impersonal as trying to interact on a blog site.
- I’ll give you my Skype name if you give me yours. Then if you have a question or want to talk about a subject in more depth, we can chatter on Skype.
- If you are also a blogger, and I know that many of you are, I can post your blog in my Blogroll if you do the same on your blog site. Note that Google doesn’t like this unless your blog is “relevant” to mine. But I blog on many subjects so that requirement shouldn’t be too hard. Then we can share posts by “pointing” to each other’s articles and get to know each other’s interests that way.
So let me know if any of these approaches appeal to you. I’ve been asked to provide direction on blogs belonging to visitors of this site. I’ve been asked to do “guest posts” on other blogs. And I’ve been asked to do video interviews by other bloggers. I’m pretty flexible and open to this stuff. Just ask.
Getting back to the subject – this article is supposed to be about how it is impossible for a blog to rank on the first page of search results because what search engines expect is not what those who enjoy reading weblogs want to read.
Google wants websites to focus on a limited group of keywords and keyword phrases and then use those keywords and phrases frequently on every page or post. That’s good SEO. But how do you do that on a blog? The content on a good blog cannot be based on limited subject matter where a small group of keywords and phrases can be used repeatedly. I already explained why you can’t do that above. It’s boring. And blogs are not supposed to be boring.
So that kills keywords.
When Google indexes your website, sites that are optimized for SEO contain inbound links from other websites that have similar or relevant content. That would have to be another blog website. Or at least a non-blog site whose content is relevant to at least a couple of posts on this site. Fat chance of that.
So that kills back-links.
The websites that get ranked the highest by the search engines are “authority” sites. That means within the area of that site’s expertise, an authority site has the best and most complete content. Blogs are not an authority on anything. Remember what a blog is. It’s a weblog of what an individual feels is important to them and those who patronize their site. It’s supposed to be on one theme but I refuse to do that. I have a lot of areas of expertise. But I don’t pretend to be an authority on any one of them.
So that kills authority site.
Traffic – Websites that receive tons of traffic (visitors) are ranked higher by the search engines than sites that receive little traffic. I have about 1000 subscribers. That’s without my driving traffic to this site. I don’t post to any social network sites. And I know that I don’t rank well in the search engines.
I could do a better job of posting to social networks and doing “guests posts” in order to advertise this site better. But how does that help you? It doesn’t I always thought that I needed a “release” or a place where I could say whatever I wanted to say and anyone who could relate would respond back and we would learn new things from each other. That’s why I started this site in the first place. Should I care about traffic? I’m more concerned with helping an individual down the bumpy path of life than I am with juggling mobs of people.
I guess I just can’t please the search engines. And I didn’t set out to please them. So if you have some wisdom to share on this subject, please share it.
I noticed that my posts are considerably longer than the average post on other blogs. Maybe other bloggers don’t have a lot to say. I’m going to try and keep my posts a bit shorter. So I apologize for rambling on this subject. Sometimes a nip of Baileys late at night will do that to you. Until next time.