SEO’s and internet marketers have been trying for years to “crack” Google’s algorithm so that they can “beat the system” and obtain high search rankings for themselves and their clients. There’s so much talk about what Google is and isn’t counting anymore and how much emphasis is being placed on certain mediums (ie. twitter mentions and other social media buzz, on-page optimization, number and quality of inbound links, content generation…etc.) Rand from SEOmoz even posts a list of 224 potential ranking factors for SEO experts to comment on in their upcoming survey of what the most important ranking factors will be for 2011.
With the seeming complexity of Google’s code, it’s easy to get caught up in the mystery of it all and spend hours upon hours delving into the endless possibilities of what you could or should do to stay ahead of the game. Even if you were able to finally figure it all out, who’s to say that tomorrow it will even be the same. That’s what I feel like is one of the best parts about my job. Each day the game changes. I for one hated working for Wells Fargo and multiple other jobs growing up and having to go to work everyday just to do the exact same thing I did the day before.
However, if the game is changing so much and there is so much mysterious complexity to figuring out how you should or shouldn’t spend your time, what is the best way to prepare and what should you do with the hours your charging your clients to work on their marketing if you aren’t exactly sure how to tackle the job?
My conclusion to this is that yes, you need to put the hours in each day to stay on top of the ever changing industry knowledge. However, as much as things change in the search world, the core principles are the same. Know your industry, offer better content than anyone else in the industry, be social, give away what you want to receive (this means links too:), and be consistent.
To provide a little analogy, it takes the same thing to succeed in this line of work as the Auburn Tigers are going to need to gain success against Oregon’s complex offense. As most of us know, the Duck’s have implemented a new, super bewildering, play calling method this year that has confused opposing team’s defenses. Instead of focusing on cracking their system, why not just stick to the fundamentals of football and try to beat them at that. If Auburn plays tough, hard-nosed defense, contains Lamichael James, and Cam Newton and the offense drive the ball down the field and score, they have a great shot at withstanding Oregon’s high powered offense.
In the end, it’s all about hard work, limiting mistakes, and having a little bit of creativity. Can’t you say the same thing for finding success in any field though?