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Subject: Re: UKNM: search engines: the bigger picture
From: Stefan Magdalinski
Date: Sat, 20 Nov 1999 17:46:32 GMT

"D.Visions Limited" wrote:
> Search engines are important, that's true. But let's not forget why and for
> who.
> Our experience (and that of our clients) shows that surfers use search
> engines most in the first three to six months of web experience. They use
> them to find core and peripheral interest material. However once they have
> established their circle of sites (like we all have?) the preferred search
> method is through directories, indices and links page of sites within the
> user's circle. In other words we move from search engines to other methods
> once familiar with where to find the right sort of material for our core
> interests.
> Search engines play their part again when we need to find information on our
> peripheral interests (e.g. frog collecting, hot air balloon rides in north
> devon, bad jokes etc.)

I'd be interested to see evidence for this, as it flies in the face of
most of what I've seen.

> We advise cloaking and signposting technologies as the only 'reliable' ways
> of acheiving high ranking in search engines although, obviously, optimising
> KD (keyword density) through meta tag tweaking is important too. Find out
> more about search engines, meta tags etc at the excellent
> www.searchenginewatch.com . There are plenty of DIY solutions out there but
> ask yourself a question : How come companies like us (www.dvisions.co.uk )
> can charge our clients thousands of pounds to deliver results when you can
> buy a DIY solution for 100Us$ ? It's because they don't work! (or at least
> they don't work well) . Improving your ranking from 10,000 to 238 is not a

Well the obvious answer is that there's enough ignorance and desperation
out there to pay for any amount of snake oil.

> benefit - it's a waste of time and money. If you can't get in the top 30,
> the effect on traffic will be almost non-existent.

I'd be correct in assuming, then, that you only charge clients if you
reach these magnificent targets. If that's the case, I'll hire you.

> All that having been said we accept that search engine optimisation is still
> an inexact science and we would welcome input from anyone who claims to
> cracked the problem completely, competitors included!

no doubt. The battle between search engine designers and people such as
yourselves is a classic darwinian arms race. It'll never be *solved*,
but you'll both become very sophisticated at wasting eachothers time.

They, of course, have a vested interest in preserving impartiality and
the trust of their users, but they've rather screwed that up by selling
keywords to the highest bidder.

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I've forwarded this to all my mates. sue me.

Stefan Magdalinski, computin mobile:07931 376142
stefanatisness [dot] org boat:0171 7381837
icq:5261825 desk:0171 6646209
http://www.isness.org/house/boat **/

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  UKNM: search engines: the bigger picture, D.Visions Limited

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