A Name Change…

I just changed the official title/name of this blog. Formerly the Jon Payne (.net) Search Marketing Blog, its now the Jon Payne (.net) Web Marketing Blog. Notice “Search” was replaced by “Web”. A very small change, but important nonetheless.

Why the change?

With each day that goes by I am more and more convinced that the advances in search engine technology, the aptitude of general internet users, and adaptation of internet marketing into mainstream marketing plans are also causing the distinction of SEO as a stand-alone form of internet marketing to be blurred.

Indeed, to rank well in the search engines it used to be about “optimizing” the on-page factors of a site. Then came “link building” – which really is a once-legitimate basic promotional technique that is really no different than old-fashioned PR. It has since been used, abused and discussed to death, so I’ll leave it at that.

Later, everyone in the SEO community got article and content-happy. Generate lots of content they said. Write articles. Start a (cough) blog. Now we get articles and content about the most random, obscure and niche products that we’ve in many cases never heard of, and certainly don’t want to read about. Information overload!

So let’s get it straight now. To effectively optimize a website we often see people do the following:

  • build a site with clean code, using CSS and HTML text
  • continually add valuable content to the site
  • notify related sites and request that they link to you when and where appropriate
  • link out to other good, related resources that may or may not link to you (here’s one)
  • register with applicable directories and resource sites
  • focus on attracting targeted traffic, and generating solid conversion rates by giving the visitors what they want
  • balance with an effective, measurable PPC campaign

How’s that not just good web marketing? As the SEO game gets harder, the search engines devise ways to cancel out all of the low-hanging-fruit, or SEO-specific tricks, shortcuts and such used to get high rankings. What we’re left with is just plain old solid marketing. Build a great product (site), treat people well, generate publicity, target the right market, etc. You might as well call most of the SEO efforts for what they are – web marketing. Through in an affiliate program and perhaps a few banner ads and opt-in email campaigns and you’ve essentially outlined all the major web marketing tools at our disposal in today’s environment.