Today I would like to present a potential solution to many of the communication problems that we SEOers have. You know the problem, you tried to explain something to management or a client and their eyes glazed over after about four seconds and the first use of the words “keyword density”.
The metaphor is a simple one: treat Google as though it is a beautiful lady. Or, if you prefer, ask yourself whether a beautiful lady would approve of whatever you are contemplating.
Firstly, I would like to apologise for the apparently sexist nature of the metaphor. But, as I am sure you will soon realise, it just doesn’t work as well the other way around.
In my mind’s eye, when I think of a beautiful lady, I think of the swimwear model Irina Shayk. Your mind may lead you to think of someone else, just go with whomever appears first. (BTW – Irina, should you happen to read this, Hi! I’m free for dinner next week, anywhere in Europe…)
It might be helpful to think of Joan Collins for the appropriate attitude. When asked a number of years ago about the thirty two year age difference between her and husband number five, she remarked, “If he dies, he dies”. She didn’t play Alexis Carrington for nothing…
Enough preamble, what would a beautiful lady approve of?
Imagine yourself as a website.
Where do you live? Do you have the best address that you can (.com) or some cheaper nearby address (.info or .biz)? Is your home stable and secure (appropriate hosting) or did you select the cheapest quality based just on cost? Perhaps you should spend the money and upgrade?
One day you are walking around town with your lady. Who is that over there waving at you? Is that the local Mayor? It is! You are friends with the Mayor (.gov)? That’s nice. Most ladies would approve of that.
On your stroll you turn a corner. The Dean of the local University (.edu) stops to chat. He likes you! What a great guy you must be.
One street further on and the editor of the local newspaper says hello as well. Only the best of guys is known and respected (linked to) by such reputable people.
In contrast, how would that beautiful lady feel if the only people that seemed to know you were money lenders (pay day loans), porn stars, drug dealers (viagra) and pit bosses (casino)? She might have good reason to worry about your reputation. I’m going to guess that Irina Shayk and Joan Collins would not approve.
Enough of who you know, what about your behaviour?
If she calls you, you’d better answer or she’ll be gone. What? It takes nine rings for you to answer (slow load times) the phone? Nobody likes to be kept waiting.
What if you kept the same suit and tie (design and sales page), but changed (domain) name every few months and built up a reputation with lots of those undesirables mentioned above? She might think that you are some sort of scammer or fraudster (black hat SEO). Who wants one of those in their life? A lady wants to be seen at the theatre, or in a box at the opera or at a great table in a fine restaurant, not bailing you out of jail…
How about your looks?
A lady wants her man to be someone, someone special and unique, with a purpose and ambition. Hopefully, he will look good in a suit (contemporary design) and always wear shoes and a tie. She doesn’t want there to be fifty versions of you (duplicate content) floating around. Neither, for that matter, will she approve if you make duplicate versions of her! And that late night picture you took of her had better be locked away safely (strong security).
A unique and special man is up to date. He can chat with ease about the latest developments in the world (freshness). Being out dated will not be entertaining for long.
And those advertisements! If you are Lewis Hamilton and the inside of your cap has a sponsor, that is one thing. He has a Formula One team to help pay for. You, do not, so perhaps you can remove some of your pointless adverts? If nobody has clicked on it so far this year, you can get rid of it and she will appreciate the effort.
This all takes effort, of course. Impressing a beautiful lady (Google) is not quick, easy or cheap. It takes commitment. But if you can do it … the returns will more than justify the effort.
Now that I have used this metaphor a few times with clients, it is surprisingly easy for them to grasp – though my clients are all men of a certain age. I hope that you can bridge a few communication gaps of your own with this idea.