Ask Dave Taylor: Tech and Business


Why you should be ignoring your search results

Today I'm attending a search engine research workshop run by Brad Fallon in Atlanta, Georgia, and am fascinated by the people here who obsessively track their SERPs (search engine results placement, jargon for what match number you are on Google for a given search term).

My part of this workshop is to talk about how blogging can help your search engine placement, but what I'm actually talking about is whether SERP is a meaningful measure of whether or not you're being successful. And that's what I want to talk about in this article too.

The problem is that there are too many people who are flying at the five-foot level, focused completely on search engine optimization tricks and on daily traffic, daily search engine placement, and daily tweaks to try and suss out the best possible placement. It's the Internet equivalent of corporations who manage purely for quarterly -- or even monthly -- financial results. It's tactics at the cost of strategy, short term trumping long term.

This morning a woman came into the breakfast area, rather upset, and shared that "I'm no longer in MSN search! I can't find my site in Yahoo at all!" My somewhat flippant response was...