Wednesday, June 6, 2012

SEO and me.....

I've just launched my new web site and my To Do List is now three pages long. Where on Earth do I start? I stuck a pin in it and hit "write a blog post". Then I had to decide what to write about. Well, how about the one thing that has had to become my obsession over the last few months - Search Engine Optimization. I have read and read and read until I needed new glasses. Shed loads of advice out there about how to be found by the Great God Google. How to sift through it all and find the pearls of wisdom contained therein?

There are many purported experts out there, some more expert than others, but who am I to say? I am not a nerd, or a geek or a computer guru. I made copious notes and then took what they said (when I could understand it) with a pinch of salt!

There are also many on line sellers who, having been through the whole laborious process themselves, offer up their own experiences for us to learn from. I thank them from the bottom of my heart! Sometimes, these ordinary people find ways of explaining the complexities of SEO that even a technically challenged person like myself can grasp.

Using all these resources and a lot of my own experimentation, I have come to the conclusion that SEO is both  a complete mystery and just common sense! I know that statement is contradictory but so is the internet.

In this modern age (It's the 21st Century, for God's sake! How did I get here?) everything seems to change at an alarming rate. It may be just a function of my advancing years but, I swear I can't keep up! Google, and other search engines, rearrange their "algorithms" at least once a month to make it more difficult for the likes of us to be spotted amongst the crowd. Well, actually, no. It's not the likes of us they want to keep out. They have said so. They want relevant, interesting and real content. This is where the common sense bit comes in. We can give them that if we could just stop trying to second guess them all the time!

I have decided to just use my own words to describe my jewellery. I will not use the Google Keyword Tool because it depresses and confuses me in equal measure. I will use real, descriptive phrases that real people may use when they search for stuff on the net. This, however, brings me to the next problem. We don't all use the same words for the same objects. Fair enough, "necklace", "bracelet", "pendant", "earrings" are all standard terms but, what sort of bracelet is it? What style of necklace? We all seem to have our own ideas.

I recently spotted a pretty bracelet on Etsy and added it to my favourites. It's not really the jewellery but the photography thereof that attracts me. (I'm still trying to get that right but we won't go there today - that's another blog post entirely!)  The designer called it a "cha cha bracelet" - a term I had not come across before. It was remarkably similar in style to some bracelets of my own making but I called them "charm bracelets".

I immediately renamed this one to see what would happen:

Cha Cha Bracelet, Pink Pearls, Sterling Silver, Peridot

But this one, I still consider to be a charm bracelet:

Sea Theme Charm Bracelet, Sterling Silver, Blue Onyx, Green Agate, Pearls, Crystals

So, the upshot is, finding out what other people call things is the only research I shall be doing in future!

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