Thursday, November 08, 2007

the Algorithm

As much as I complain about work, I can't say I don't work in an exciting industry.

The SEO (Search Engine Optimisation) world went through its biggest shake-up of the year the past few weeks. Google rolled out (unannounced as always) a major change to their search algorithm and Page Ranks have been hit across the entire www. People in the SEO industry (and that kinda includes me) are abuzz with activity.

Its a fascinating process to watch. The industry has (and always will be) shrouded in mystery. The big G will always keep it like that, as the God that they worship is Relevancy, and if people know how the Algo works they'll game it so that their (often less relevent) sites get to the first page. So the Algo is the Secret Recipe, probably the greatest secret (certainly most valuable) in the universe today. It makes for a kinda Cloak-n-Dagger environment, which is pretty exciting if you're that way inclined.

And after the big Algo change hits, and everyone assesses the damage, the explanation theories start exploding. This expert says "This is why your Page Rank went down", the next "No, that's not it, its this other factor", and the next "Guys, Page Rank doesn't even matter anymore!"

The truth is that NOBODY actually knows (Except a select few in the Googleplex who are probably surveilled 24/7 in case they spill the beans in any Billion $ bribe).

And even if somebody DID actually know, that info is only current until the next change (which will pretty much come about once G has worked out that too many people now know, and too many irrelevent results are sneaking to the top). So its a Cat-and-Mouse industry sorta like the game played between anti-virus companies and virus creators.

BPG, by the way, was not unscathed, with his primary biz site knocked overnight from a Page Rank of 6 to a PR 4. But me, I been in this game for a while, and I got a few tricks up my sleeve. I'm betting I'll be back up at PR6 in about 3 weeks time :)

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