Google is my bitch!

Written by Jamie Freeman

So, during the World Cup (a football competition designed to humiliate the English) we were all struck by the phenomenon of the vuvuzela.

I decided to record a 'humourous' song in the style of a lame English rapper I christened Dubious Scoop. It was called 'Vuvuzela Song', quite reasonably. You can hear it at www.dubiousscoop.com if you're curious.

Within 36 hours of coming up with the idea I had done the following:

  • Song written
  • Recorded and mixed
  • Props bought
  • Dancer procured
  • Video shot and edited
  • Uploaded to YouTube
  • Domain names bought
  • Site built
  • Twitter account set up
  • FaceBook fan page sorted

Oh, and in the mean time I managed to fit a little work in.

What about Google

That's the background to this gloating blog post. The other day a funny thing happened. I googled 'vuvuzela song' (a week after releasing the song) and waddya know? My hastily thrown together website is on page one of Google. Neat.

Of the 1.3m other results I'd say that was pretty good going, no? Let's say I was a record company (I'm not) and was going to throw money at the problem of promoting my site through Google. I'd probably hire one of the many, many, many Search Engine Optimiser (SEO) companies out there to 'get my site higher up Google'. And I'd probably be quite happy with a page one result, yes? I doubt even the so-called 'black hat' companies would promise better.

What's your secret to SEO success, Jamie?

Do nothing. I repeat: do nothing.

Nothing specifically 'SEO' anyway. DO do the following however:

  • Create interesting content
  • Stick it on the Internets in a standards-compliant format
  • Tell some people about it, you know, Twitter, Facebook... the usual

The end. And you'd do all that stuff anyway wouldn't you? It's not SEO, it's using the web in the way you would do anyway. If the web likes what you do (in other words, if it's of some value to some people) then it will succeed.

To any SEO's reading this I do actually have one piece of advice and that is this: tell your clients to improve their content, don't try and force it up the rankings. Just make it relevant, don't try to make it seem relevant.

Google does not care about your tinkering.

Comments

  • Peter Handley -

    Nice work!

    As we discussed at the last BrightonSEO event, I am pretty sure that a lot of the SEO work that I would normally have to do is to fix some of the mess that some web designers make of a site, which after your presentation, I am aware that you don't do.

    Intrigued as to why www.dubiousscoop.com 302 redirects to http://www.sitefy.com/vuvuzelasong though?

  • Jamie Freeman -

    Cheers for that Pete, as ever a balanced view from you, much appreciated.

    I didn't have time during those 36 hours to sort the domain properly, as you can imagine. And guess what? Doesn't mater! Google, page one ;-)

  • harry -

    Nice work Jamie - I think that's pretty exceptional.

    But… I think there are 2 reasons why your (spectacular) achievement doesn't extrapolate into seoisawasteoftime.

    First, most web sites are not accessible and standards compliant - take the very large unnamed multinational that I work for, for example. Far too many marketing folks think that SEO means adding lots (and lots) of metatags after the site has been built. And to their shame, most web designers do not correct them.

    Why? Because even in 2010 there are WAY too many marketing people who don't know enough to understand how search engines work and how it will impact their business. And there are WAY too many web designers happy to take their money. And that's being generous to a lot of web designers.

    Second, you picked a word that was ridiculously newsworthy at the height of it's newsworthiness. And even then, 1.3m results is small beer. If your business is about selling something much more common than vuvuzellas and much less interesting, it's much harder to create exceptional content. And content is king as you've shown.

    So basically, if the people who built cars did a better job, we'd need fewer mechanics. When the people that build websites do a better job, SEOs will either adapt or go out of business.

    Until then, we need (good) SEOs to help us do better business.

  • Jamie Freeman -

    Harry, Pete

    Sounds like you're both saying (excuse me while I dig out my broad brush) you're often just fixing poor websites. I have a suggestion then. Call yourself a web developer!!

    All I've ever said is build websites right rather than try to SEO a poor website into shape. So stop patching up your clients websites and tell them to invest in building them properly. In your new-found role as web developers you'll find plenty of work!

  • James Seymour-Lock -

    The question is will your site stay on page one after several months without regular content updates?

    SEO nowadays just translates to semantic markup, web standards quality and well written content with regular updates and a dash of social networking.

  • Jamie Freeman -

    If I was selling a product or promoting a 'real' band then of course I would continue with updating it (as I have been during the world cup), and Google would respond in its natural way. I'll probably get bored though; it was just a joke that has taken up too much time already ;-)

    As for your second comment, yeah - so they keep telling me. Again I say "then call yourself a web developer" :-)

  • david sorensen -

    I can't find this website on Google. I typed in 'vuvuzela song' and checked the first eight pages, but it appears nowhere. How come?

  • Ciaran -

    SEO is dead/a waste of time? Yawn. Next.

  • Jamie Freeman -

    David; yes, the world cup is long gone now, as is any interest in my song. Ciaran; agreed.

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