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From Jill Whalen: With the latest brouhaha over PageRank sculpting, the boondoggle nature of many techniques that pass for SEO has become clearer than ever. A “boondoggle” is defined at Wordnet as “work of little or no value done merely to look busy.” If that doesn’t sum up PageRank sculpting via nofollow links for the past year, then nothing does!
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from pringlebrett 1985 Days ago #
Votes: 0

"work of little or no value done merely to look busy"

LOL, brilliant! Seems they always focus on the quick easy actions, instead of the ones that require time and careful thought to make a big difference



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from crimsongirl 1985 Days ago #
Votes: 0

All true, although I suspect many jobs in other industries are mostly boondoggles.  We just see it in SEO because we're on the inside and can more easily see through this particular smokescreen.



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from Jill 1985 Days ago #
Votes: 2

@crimsongirl yes, but I just wish more clients and potential clients would see it. I've been educating on this topic for so many years, but it doesn't seem to take.

Part of the problem is all the articles which say the exact opposite of what I wrote. [sigh]



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from BeantownSEO 1985 Days ago #
Votes: 4

“Take a website, give it huge ugly parameter filled urls, don’t include META keywords or description, make all links images, don’t put H1 tags or bold text or anything, and don’t give it a sitemap. It’s going to rank pretty poorly unless it somehow obtains tons of links.”

I dont think one can make the assumption that because all of these things aren't being done, that the site will rank poorly. I think you could not do any of those things, as Jill has said, and the site could rank well just fine. However, you may improve a few things mentioned in there, and could give the site a teeny boost. Even the teeniest boosts, which Jill herself said in the article, is possible, and as many people in the industry would surely agree, the teeniest of boosts, when aggregated, can make an impact and a difference.

There are a lot of arguments to be made here, but I think it all comes down to understanding what one should invest time in, and what is just going to be a waste.

In terms of H1'S, I think I would agree that the fact that the tag itself is an H1 holds no relevance - the simple fact that keywords are on the page is what is significant and if they are able to be placed in your headlines, than you shoud do so.....again not because of the tag itself holding any significance, but the fact that readers will instantly see your headlines (presumingly) and it is important for understanding information hierarchy and semantics, and the search engines will see keywords on the page. When looking at it that way, it makes sense.

I too wouldn't recommend changing URL's that are working perfectly fine for the sake of changing them to include keywords, but if you are planning a change or redesign, that is something that would make sense, if possible.

I also do not think XML Sitemaps are useless. If your site architecture is in good shape, then yes, I don't think it's critical, but in many cases I have seen evidence of XML Sitemaps helping a site in terms of the crawling of URL's by search engines.



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Desphinn from rishilakhani 1985 Days ago #
Votes: 1

Sorry - but this time round I dont think the article states the full story. I respect Jill, but just dont agree with thios one.

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Desphinn from Manley 1984 Days ago #
Votes: 0

What utter twaddle. Is this just link bait? Really Jill, you are better than this.

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from Halfdeck 1984 Days ago #
Votes: 2

lol what's up with the desphinns? What jill wrote is just common sense. That said, I'm not surprised not alot of SEOs are voting up this inconvenient truth.



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from Jill 1984 Days ago #
Votes: -1

Perhaps Manley is protecting his boondoggles?



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from impurist 1982 Days ago #
Votes: 0

This is an excellent article because it encourages webmasters to get back to basics and empowers clients in selecting a quality consultant. Perhaps there is some small value in some of the techniques like H1 and long URLs, but doing busy work will only go so far. Your client may be too busy to participate in SEO-friendly content efforts, but they will NOT be too busy to check their traffic/earnings reports.



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from FredMoesker 1982 Days ago #
Votes: 0

Finally a clear perspective amongst all the junk that is out there.



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from Fitz 1981 Days ago #
Votes: 0

I disagree about the XML Sitemaps. Having one allows you to access a lot of info about how the search engines view your site, errors they see, and keywords they associate your site with (in the webmaster console). It may not directly improve rankings but it helps you understand how the SE’s interact w/ your site which can then point out areas you can improve.



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from Brent-D-Payne 1981 Days ago #
Votes: 1


Hindsight is always 20/20 isn't Jill? But where were you and the naysayers when it was working well? When those of us that acted quickly saw the differences and gain an advantage for some period of time?

Yes, utmost respect but your drum beating about how pointless PageRank sculpting was simply because the algo changed is getting old. Congrats! You were right in the long run but what if you weren't? Plus, I don't recall SEOs ripping on you for choosing not to do it.

I know we all have to work our angles and take whatever wins we can but this just seems . . . well, a bit exhausting at this point.




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from suzukisuv 1979 Days ago #
Votes: 0

Yea i agree sitemap wont directly help, but it can give you some views. Also analytics is good.



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from aanya 1972 Days ago #
Votes: 0

nice information. Basically html sitemap works fins for the users and xml work for the crawler.

its good info..



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