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Five Secrets to Bad Search Engine Rankings

Posted by on 4th Sep 2007 | 11 comments

There are lots of tips out there on optimizing your site for search engines, but one of the key things is to avoid doing things that sabotage your efforts to get great search engine rankings. In case you hate getting visitors, like to end up on page 20 of Google results for your site’s keywords, and prefer to be a starving blogger, here are five secrets to bad search engine rankings:

  1. Ramble in your blog posts - Hey, who needs a topic? I mean, it’s your blog and if you want to cover politics, sex, celebrities and that weird dream you had last night, all in one post, who’s to stop you? Have fun. I’m not sure what title you’d give it, but I’m sure lots of people are searching for terms like “my random thoughts today.”
  2. Only write about what’s relevant right now - Evergreen content’s for sissies! I’m sure lots of people still want to know about Tom and Katie’s wedding, or the 2004 U.S. presidential election. By the time your post gets spidered by the search engines, no one will be searching for those hyper-timely items. C’est la vie!
  3. Be anti-social – Don’t link to other bloggers. Don’t have a blogroll. Don’t comment in other blogs. Don’t join groups at social bookmarking sites like StumbleUpon. You are a blog island unto yourself. I’m sure you have the lack of inbound links to prove it.
  4. Don’t do keyword research – What are you, a librarian? You just wanna blog, so just blog. Who cares if more people are about twice as likely to search for the term photo than the term picture? You want people to work really hard to find you so they earn a spot as a reader.
  5. Write sporadically – You want to keep those readers, and those search engines, guessing. Don’t post daily or even weekly. Just post when the mood strikes you. Maybe it’s daily this week, and then you go a month without posting. Hopefully, the search engine will spider your blog right when you’ve had a long delay. That way, you can be sure the creepy spider stays away for a nice long time. And as a bonus, you will be sure readers get turned off. Seeing a most recent posting date that is, well, dated, is oh-so enticing.

I have experience writing for the Web since the early 1990s, and I have been writing for SEO for several years. I am the operator of Type-A Mom, Foodie Mama, and momShare, a social bookmarking site for moms. I write for several other sites including the France Travel site for About.com, the Family Travel site at Suite101.com, Transitions Abroad, and the Well Fed Network.

11 comments - Leave a reply
  • Posted by Shaun on 4th Sep 2007

    ::chuckles:: Man…I have to admit, those seem like pretty good tips. :P

    ::tries them::

    ;-)

  • Posted by Matt Jones on 4th Sep 2007

    LoL at the sarcasm… however writing about whats hot can still be effective providing your blog is trusted by Google. Blogging Fingers gets indexed every day or every other day at the latest.

  • Posted by Jennifer on 4th Sep 2007

    I do all these except 3 and 5. I am still ranked. I need a some recommendations that is relevant to me, come on now.

  • Posted by Allie on 5th Sep 2007

    New and need every tip…many thanks.

  • Posted by islam abas on 5th Sep 2007

    it is amazing thing

  • Posted by RV on 5th Sep 2007

    Thanks for the great (funny) tips!

  • Posted by Leon on 5th Sep 2007

    Thanks a lot! Those tips were awful! As they should be! Keep up the good work.

  • Posted by James Joyner on 5th Sep 2007

    I've been blogging mostly about the "news of the day" for nearly 5 years and been reasonably successful at it. As Matt Jones notes above, Google spiders top blogs several times an hour.

    Furthermore, you'd be surprised how much traffic there is for "old news" items like the TomCat wedding. People are constantly looking for things to jog their memory and blogs, with their permalinked content, tend to outlast the newspapers and others who quickly archive their old material.

  • Posted by Tinu on 5th Sep 2007

    lmao to "What are you, a librarian?"

  • Posted by Jay Wilson on 5th Sep 2007

    I agree with all of the mentioned points, but I have to say that I get a steady amount of my traffic from items that were "news of the day"…such as the Coney Island Mermaid Parade which I covered on my site months ago. I think if a topic is "news of the day" but has enough interested parties, you can still see success with it.

  • Posted by SkaKri on 9th Sep 2007

    Brill! :D