note: update to this post
As much as I hate to say it, I’m starting to buy the whole “blogs are ruining search engines” hype that’s been spread around these past few months. Let’s look at what types of things a search engine like Google likes to see:
– frequent updates to webpages
– many incoming links
– meaningful page titles
– important text wrapped in header elements
– meaningful page filenames
In the web’s history, few sites did all the above well, so using these properties as criteria in locating good sites could be reliable. I think it’s a total accident that blogs do all of the above well, especially those with nice Movable Type setups that create meaningful page titles and filenames, and those designed with CSS and using well-structured content. I don’t think people set out to do each thing specifically to gain in google rankings, but the cumulative effect of all the above is pushing blogs high into searches for almost anything.
Now that I’m doing the PVR blog, I’m doing a bit of research for every post and when I run searches for TiVo and other terms, I’m finding a disturbing number of basic searches end up with the PVR blog in the top ten. Someone might point that out as a great success, but keep in mind the site started on Thursday of last week — it’s 4 days old.
Tonight I started to write up a review of a product and found that a search for the product name gives my photos of said product as the #1 result, with the actual product in second place. My site is days old but outperforming the more useful site that has been around for a couple years.
Something isn’t right in Googleville and perhaps it’s time to figure out new criteria for predicting a high quality informational site that doesn’t instantly favor blogs.