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Finally, respect or not respect the webmaster guidelines ?

Proudeur [PersonRank 0]

Sunday, May 27, 2007
12 years ago1,639 views

Hello everybody,

I don't know if a good strategy for a webmaster is to follow webmaster guidelines. Since 2 years we read that the quality is the best way to be at the top of google and now I'm annoyed to read this.
I have the feeling that google doesn't consider the quality but the strategy of the webmaster.
I check the ranking of some websites and I can see that a poor website with 9 pages updated daily thanks to a rss, a poor design which makes the text illegible and a content very dangerous for begginers has a better ranking than other websites which tried to be honest and respectful with the visitor.

I know why the first website has a better ranking. He makes a lot of link exchanges and he doesn't choose his partners. So he makes link exchanges with every website in the world with as anchor the word with which he wants to be at the top of google. At the other hand the second website doesn't make a lot of link exchanges because he wants only good websites.

So we have two strategies. The first with a webmaster who cheats but not too much and who doesn"t follow webmaster guidelines. This guy is at the top of google, and an other guy who, as a stupid person, follows webmaster guidelines and doesn't succeed to have a better ranking than the first.

The first guy is at the top since 7 months, and I'm affraid to think that he will probably stay here for 7 months again.

So what should be the strategy of the second webmaster ?
Continue to be stupid and respect webmaster guidelines or try to be smarter than before and cheat a little ?

My email : leproudeur[put at-character here]yahoo.fr
  

Philipp Lenssen [PersonRank 10]

12 years ago #

My suggestion: the time & energy you worry about rankings or competition is better spent thinking about how to improve your site and your site's content (for your human visitors), and then secondary how to get the word out (without relying on Google rankings). Better Google rankings will inevitably follow if you're then backlinked from authority sites that like your content and consider it great.

Whether or not to respect the webmaster guidelines in a way is also secondary: first, ask yourself if whatever you plan to do with your site really benefits your human visitors (and if you're really originally doing it for your visitors). If it does, go ahead and do it. Google's webmaster guidelines are more directected against over-optimizing for bots, they don't attack your optimization for human visitors (well, perhaps in some exotic cases that are disputable, but mostly not). If they would stop us from benefitting human visitors then webmasters should stop following them.

If on the other hand you want to employ a tactic you know doesn't help your human vistors but is sneaky, then of course, it may or may not work, but that's a different questions. A lot of sneaky schemes work on the web, it's your choice which "side of the path" to choose... it's just not a moral argument to justify cheating by saying "cheating works" or "others cheat too" or "I won't be caught cheating"...

Tadeusz Szewczyk [PersonRank 10]

12 years ago #

To me your given choice is too narrow, or in other words too black and white. In reality you do not have to choose between those two. I do not say that you have to use methods that can be considered grey area. What I want to say is that you should combine both, a strategic search engine optimization with ethical link building tactics and of course upgrading your website so that it becomes linkable.

As a first step you could use your opinion as a so called link bait. Of course you are not the only one frustrated out there and articles saying "just make good content and you will rank high" are really annoying so you will probably strike a chord with your message.

A nice provocative title like "Respecting Google Webmaster Guidelines is Stupid" will help.

Btw.: If your competitor just ranks high with non-topical link exchange your market does not seem to be very competitive. You can write me an email so I take a look at your site. You can find my email on my homepage: onreact.com

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