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Old 06-01-2017, 08:06 AM
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Lack of SEO Standards

Everyone is an SEO expert. But how do you know if the advice they give is actually right? Buyer be aware.
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...Given that our industry has no standards every expert who publishes SEO advice is suspect. The lack of standards makes it impossible for people to independently verify the claims that various pundits make. In fact, the lack of standards makes it impossible for the pundits to see when they are bull****ting themselves and other people. After all, without standards, who is to say you are wrong or right to assign the priorities you do? We are free to object to each other’s advice and views and nothing is settled...
Michael Martinez - May 23, 2017

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There are no SEO standards. The call for standards in the search engine optimization industry is oft-misunderstood. The adoption of standards does not require anyone to submit to certification tests. In fact, there are already several SEO certifications available. The certifications are offered by independent vendors who have no connections to any standards bodies.

Search engine optimization standards, if adopted, would provide assurances to consumers of SEO services (and products) that minimal performance can be measured, demanded and expected of, and delivered by SEO vendors. SEO standards would define what is acceptable in terms of “best practices”. SEO standards would also resolve some of the conflicts in lexicon or jargon. The International Organization for Standardization publishes an extensive explanation of the benefits that standards provide.

Despite the debate and vigorous attempts to resist adopting formal standards, a number of standard practices have been adopted throughout the SEO industry. Reputable SEO vendors often, almost universally follow the majority of these practices. Although they are not formal standards, these standard practices may help customers better understand what to expect from and look for in reputable SEO service providers.
SEO Standards – A Proposal

So do you think it's time to have proper SEO standards officially set up and those who offer "certification" have to be registered with said official SEO standards body?

Who do you think should set this up?
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Old 06-01-2017, 11:03 AM
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I doubt if standards would work out for the SEO industry, since there's a lot of dynamism & variations by geography & industry. The SEO practices of the developing world are yet to catch up with those of the first world countries & it'll be a while before that happens. Even within regions there are variations by industry & niches. Some time ago someone on this forum was seeking advice for an extremely niche area of litigation in England. It was such a small niche that he could've literally gotten away with anything! But the best practices of that niche would most probably be useless in any other areas. As long as there are varying level of competition in different niches, it will be difficult to arrive at common standards.
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Old 06-01-2017, 11:57 AM
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Originally Posted by HTMLBasicTutor View Post
Who do you think should set this up?
That's the bigger part of the million dollar question.

I don't know a lot of details pertaining to "the law", but understand that some lawyers are licenced to practice in a particular state, and may not be allowed to practice in other states.

Not to equate SEO specialists with lawyers (although I've heard of a few entrepreneurial lawyers who specialize in Internet-related matters) but I would surmise that if some kind of standards were to be created, geographical borders may end up qualifying which individuals can offer SEO advice or services based on geo-specific criteria. How wide a birth pertaining to borders and any of the other criteria might be, I have no idea.
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Old 06-06-2017, 07:11 PM
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Originally Posted by HTMLBasicTutor View Post
So do you think it's time to have proper SEO standards officially set up and those who offer "certification" have to be registered with said official SEO standards body?

Who do you think should set this up?
I don't think we need SEO standards setup. Best practices, such as writing high quality content, do the job. There are ways to work around the best practices but it seems like Google catches on and closes those holes in time.
 
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Old 06-07-2017, 11:48 AM
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Best practices, such as writing high quality content, do the job.
While content is certainly a big part in the grand scheme of things, content alone, may not facilitate the best results. Other aspects of SEO are certainly a significant part of the complete package.
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Old 06-15-2017, 12:26 AM
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SEO is also a weird world in that NOONE really knows what they are doing. We all have some sort of insight into how Google's algorithms work, however no one knows for sure what will and will not work, or why.
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Old 06-15-2017, 03:18 AM
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SEO is also a weird world in that NOONE really knows what they are doing. We all have some sort of insight into how Google's algorithms work, however no one knows for sure what will and will not work, or why.
Also doesn't help that Google keeps trying to spread misinformation about it.
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Old 06-15-2017, 05:35 AM
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Also doesn't help that Google keeps trying to spread misinformation about it.
Or, at the very best, convoluted half-truths distorted to the extent that you leave more confused than when you arrived.
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Old 06-15-2017, 08:44 PM
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Or, at the very best, convoluted half-truths distorted to the extent that you leave more confused than when you arrived.
Well, it's their product so they feel entitled to do what they want with it. But at least they should end this charade of "don't be evil" and change the slogan to "all we care about is your money".
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Old 06-18-2017, 09:36 AM
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If formal SEO certification program has to be formed, Google might have to reveal more about their search algorithms and why should google reveal their formula.
 
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Old 06-18-2017, 11:03 AM
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Originally Posted by pavan kumar View Post
If formal SEO certification program has to be formed, Google might have to reveal more about their search algorithms and why should google reveal their formula.
That's a very logical answer! Not too many people would've thought along these lines before. But Google doesn't have a monopoly on SEO. There are other search engines & many other stakeholders. If standards were really to be set, an independent body like ICANN could do it.
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Old 06-18-2017, 07:52 PM
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Originally Posted by vaguar View Post
That's a very logical answer! Not too many people would've thought along these lines before. But Google doesn't have a monopoly on SEO. There are other search engines & many other stakeholders. If standards were really to be set, an independent body like ICANN could do it.
I do not think an independent body like ICANN will do much, google will always have monopoly, other stakeholders does not matter. Google had created certain algorithms which no one can understand, keep in mind that google is money making business and they will always create such algorithms which can boost revenue or force user to use their paid advertisement. So whatever you do at the end when you grow you always will need to go go for their paid options.
 
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Old 06-18-2017, 11:51 PM
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Originally Posted by robert4u View Post
I do not think an independent body like ICANN will do much, google will always have monopoly, other stakeholders does not matter. Google had created certain algorithms which no one can understand, keep in mind that google is money making business and they will always create such algorithms which can boost revenue or force user to use their paid advertisement. So whatever you do at the end when you grow you always will need to go go for their paid options.
Government agencies in Europe are already telling Facebook & Google what to do and what not to do. One such agency may decide that it's time to set standards.
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Old 07-03-2017, 10:06 PM
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Google set this up not to reveal anything specifically their algorithm. Google is still a business and hiding their technique in order not to leak with other competitors. Like what happen upon reveling the PR on toolbar, Lots of agency are doing bad practices 'Black Hat SEO to manipulate the ranking and perceiving their client just to make sell.
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Old 07-03-2017, 11:39 PM
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Originally Posted by H2 rider View Post
I don't think we need SEO standards setup. Best practices, such as writing high quality content, do the job...
But who determines what are the best practices that stay within the guidelines of all search engines?
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Originally Posted by pavan kumar View Post
If formal SEO certification program has to be formed, Google might have to reveal more about their search algorithms and why should google reveal their formula.
Not necessarily.
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Originally Posted by vamert View Post
Google set this up not to reveal anything specifically their algorithm. Google is still a business and hiding their technique in order not to leak with other competitors. Like what happen upon reveling the PR on toolbar, Lots of agency are doing bad practices 'Black Hat SEO to manipulate the ranking and perceiving their client just to make sell.
What is this obsession about Google? Microsoft (now Bing) and Yahoo! once ruled the search market. Google came along and toppled them. Who is to say that Bing or Yahoo! won't rise to the top again? What if someone came along and toppled Google?

Let's get back to the original questions:
Quote:
So do you think it's time to have proper SEO standards officially set up and those who offer "certification" have to be registered with said official SEO standards body?

Who do you think should set this up?
Right now any yahoo can set up a SEO certification program.

How do those who are going to invest in this education/certification going to know it is worth every penny that is being charged? - Fact is they can't. There is nothing to measure the quality of the information taught against. That includes official universities and colleges offering SEO courses.
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Old 07-04-2017, 01:14 AM
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Originally Posted by HTMLBasicTutor View Post

What is this obsession about Google? Microsoft (now Bing) and Yahoo! once ruled the search market. Google came along and toppled them. Who is to say that Bing or Yahoo! won't rise to the top again? What if someone came along and toppled Google?
Although I'm inclined to agree with you, i'm also inclined to disagree! Now there's a paradox! Yahoo and Microsoft (although I don't remember a time when Bing ruled) were dominant during the fledgeling days of the internet so it was easier for Google to come along and topple them.

The industry has matured now and Google has built a significant lead. So while in theory it's possible for someone to topple Google, it seems improbable, at least at the moment.

Also, any such decline will probably be a slow progression rather than an overnight one. With the market share that Google has right now, it means Google will continue to be the defacto gold standard & authority when it comes to SEO.
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Old 07-11-2017, 05:21 AM
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You know it`s not possible. The minimum they wanted they`ve already posted on Google Webmaster advice. So far they would not reveal standards or algorithm because it will affect the business. Remember about spamming? Or about selling links worldwide. Also, not every website is similar. One is a dictionary, next is a developer platform. The third is a blog or a news website. And even business can be divided multiple times.

So no "golden key" for SEO, Tutor
 
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Old 07-28-2017, 04:47 AM
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The lack of standards undermines the quality and credibility of the SEO industry and all practitioners and promoters of search engine optimization. The lack of standards also undermines and invalidates every university course that purports to teach search engine optimization.
 
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Old 07-28-2017, 12:55 PM
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I beg to differ - This is why you test stuff and keep in testing..

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SEO is also a weird world in that NOONE really knows what they are doing. We all have some sort of insight into how Google's algorithms work, however no one knows for sure what will and will not work, or why.
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Old 08-01-2017, 06:56 PM
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As soon as any agency, to include (and especially) governments try to reign in Google, I'm sure the dollars will start to fly. And usually when money flies, people get bought- and the 'rules' are introduced. Those rules will be to the advantage of the ones that 'donate' the most money.
 
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