People searching for anything via Google have had the wool pulled over their eyes. What Google does is also misleading to Internet marketers and anyone trying to promote their business online. It’s all explained and demonstrated in the video below or at YouTube.
Every time you search, Google tells you how many pages there are for that search term. But, unless it is a highly specific search term, it never actually returns you that list of pages. Instead, it only delivers the pages in its main index. So, for the search term “Internet marketing” Google only has 948 pages in its main index, in spite of saying there are almost 20m pages. Most of the remaining pages have been shunted sideways into the supplemental index – the place where pages that are so similar to others, they are effectively hidden from view.
For anyone trying to market their business online, they could be put off by the large number of pages that seem to compete. But in actual fact it may be a much smaller number. My video shows that for the phrase “junior golf coach” there appears to be 12,400 competing pages. But Google actually only delivers 110 of them to searchers. This means there is much less competition for keywords than appears at first sight.
Google also provides advice on how to get into the main listing and not in the hidden part – the supplemental index. The “cure” it prescribes is quality links from other sites. In other words it values links from relevant sites more than what is on your own page. And this is the most fundamental flaw in Google’s thinking that leads it into endless trouble.
For instance, do you go into a library and check how many times a book is referenced by other books before you decide to read it? No. You look at the contents of that book alone to see if it fits your requirements. An important part of Google’s basis for search appears to be how popular your web site is with other web sites – and that’s why it has to battle against thinks like link farms, reciprocal linking and other methods of “cheating” Google. If Google’s suggested cure to getting in the main index is a good linking strategy, it implies that the content part of their algorithm takes second place, in spite of the fact that it is content we want.
Graham Jones is an Internet Psychologist who studies the way people use the online world, in particular how people engage with businesses. He uses this knowledge to help companies improve their online connections to their customers and potential customers and offers consultancy, workshops, masterclasses and webinars. He also speaks regularly at conferences and business events. Graham is an award-winning writer and the author of 32 books, several of which are about various aspects of the Internet. For more information connect with me on Google+