Potty Page

August 18, 2008

Hmmm... Web Developers

Truth be known, if I asked someone what they did for a living and they said "I'm a web developer", my next question would probably be "Oh right, so are you actually any good?". The thing is, right, anyone could be a web developer - just look at all the crud that's out there on the web (you're reading this blog ;-)). However, being a good one takes quite a bit of effort - I suppose it's the same with anything...

Imagine meeting someone in a bar and he says "I'm the webdeveloper for Sky". You'd be like... hmmm... ok... whisper "cowboy" under your breath and walk away.

This morning I got an email from a web developer (who specialises in search engine optimisation) asking if I'd like to exchange links between my blog and a site of his client's (possibly even his own company branching out into cheap telephony). Thing is I like to squeeze my own GoogleJuice, I come at the top for many searches without trying (I'm also not trying to sell something on the web that's in an already saturated market, where you'd need the Redbull of GoogleJuice to get anywhere near the top 100 pages for simple searches on the topic)

Needless to say, I'm not going to swap links.

I decided to visit the guy's company webpage (which sucks - all good web development people must have sucky websites, it's similar to how the headquarters for multinational housebuilders always must have a leaking roof in reception). They even use underlines, seriously, what's that all about? (no, it's not a link, just an underlined word just in case you'd forgotten what they looked like).

I'm also humoured by a possible attempt at SEO, which is to consistantly spell 'professional' as 'proffessional' (common mispellings are good for getting illiterate search engine users to your site - lots of my hits come from misspellings in my blog posts). However, when you're seeding your page with SEO bait it's probably not a good idea to make it appear as the first thing you see on the page... Yeah fine, put it at the top of the code in HTML so that Google thinks that it's at the top, but make sure it's not actaully rendered right at the top of the page by a browser. "'Proffessional Online Communications'", yeah, I want to really want spend good money with you. I also think there's little use in dropping the apostrophe in "it's" when you mean "it is".

Clearly, there's a balance between having a page that looks badly spelt for the search engine, but is not written by an illiterate for the people who are actually visiting the site... in fact maybe just keep bad spellings to meta tags (if search engines still actually uses these?) Actually, if you're selling a product that isn't web development I'd be less worried about the site being spelt ok, if that makes sense? For example, I'd still buy from a garden centre with a leaky roof.

Handy Hint: If you want to go with an SEO company... and you want to know if they are any good try finding their website by searching for general terms... an example might be "search engine optimisation manchester". If after many searches you don't find them... they probably aren't very good at it, pick someone else! Like the people who reoccur at the top all of all your searches... humoursly "proffessional search engine optimisation manchester" doesn't place these dudes in the top ten either.

Rant over. I'm not linking to the site because I don't want to give them googlejuice for being not that good. I know I could use nofollow, but I don't want searchengines that don't respect nofollow getting a look in, ok? (oh yeah, typos on this post are intentional SEO bait ;-))

Posted by Ed at August 18, 2008 7:38 PM | Rant |