Interesting argument entitled “A Market for Lemons, a Nobel Prize, and Snake Oil SEO“.
“I see mis-information as a core problem for the SEO industry. There is so much so-called SEO out there, mostly outdated, baseless, or downright wrong, that the accessible information is more wrong than right. A Google or Yahoo! search on SEO topics is ridiculous, for many reasons. Often accurate SEO information is considered trade secret by knowledge consultants, and thus is not very accessible. What appears in front of the inquisitive SEO consumer is mostly junk.“
“I already see that tech-savvy seekers of SEO skip right past the fluff and ask for short term or no term engagements, performance metrics, and accountability.“
Many SEO firms that traded on supposed “secret knowledge” have already been weeded out, and many more will follow. As clients get more accustomed to this area, they’ll be demanding traditional advertising and marketing metrics, which will help separate fact from fiction. The black hat/white hat debate is long dead – the only thing that really matters now is the value add.
Conversely, this is an area where search has a key advantage. Search is more measureable than most marketing channels. The agencies who offer measureable services should be better positioned to match their supply with client demand. Todd Friesen shows how.
That still leaves the problem, for smaller outfits, of finding a sustainable SEO business model.