It is smart, it is witty and in some cases it is inane. Gabriel Goldenberg has a post up at seoroi.com that provides a lot of food for thought and in my opinion also gives some poor advice. His is one of those provocative posts that encourages everyone to start thinking about the way they do their online marketing but also reminds everyone to not to believe everything they read.
Gabriel believes webmasters need to become independent from search engines and offers up five tips to do just that. But what I believe Gabriel really means to say is he believes webmasters need to diversify so that they are no longer largely dependant on Google.
“It is time for webmasters to become independent from search engines.”
His fist tip is to use search engines other than Google. Well going back to Gabriel’s initial point, how do search engines other than Google liberate webmasters from search engines in general? As I said, the answer is Gabriel didn’t really mean liberate webmasters from search engines, he meant liberate webmasters from their reliance on Google yet that is not what he said.
The second tip is a good one and one I can agree with heartily. Webmasters must diversify their traffic sources. Search engines shouldn’t be the only way webmasters acquire traffic. Google’s Florida update and the devastating repercussions of that update exist as a perfect example of why diversification is so important. The Florida update should be a constant reminder that if Google or any other single source of traffic is the lifeblood of a business then that business is only a day away from being defunct.
The third and fifth tips are pretty much one in the same and both can be viewed as positive and negative at the same time. Gabriel suggests developing alternative revenue streams both online and off. While I like the idea it isn’t always practical or convenient. Creating alternative revenue streams really depends on what type of webmaster an individual is and what that individual is attempting to accomplish with any given site when it comes to their current monetization strategy.
Tip number four, in my opinion, is the best tip. Create sites you are passionate about! While it goes against some of the ideas the author had in his third tip about monetization, I think it is the key driver for any webmaster to have long-term success. A webmaster should always do what they enjoy so that the work is both pleasant and rewarding whenever possible. I think often times webmasters become so focused on making money or being successful in someway that they forgot to enjoy the process.
The sixth tip, which is “free” and everyone loves free, is to block Googlebot. Now if you are new to internet marketing or naive you might actually consider doing this, but I strongly caution anyone against this course of action. I am sure there are reasons to justify blocking Googlebot, but overall I cannot believe that this is a good tip for any webmaster in general. A tip like this is a serious reminder why everyone must always think for themselves and never believe everything they read. In fact maybe webmasters reading this article should take a look at the robots.txt for the site where Gabriel’s article was authored? http://seoroi.com/robots.txt
Over all while I cannot agree with all of the Gabriel’s points and strongly disagree with some, I still think the article is a worthwhile read for all webmasters, if for no other reason than to encourage everyone to keep thinking for themselves and get involved in the conversation at large.
(Andy’s Note: Gab responded in the comments.)