SEO Forum Watch Blog

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Location: Manchester, Lancashire, United Kingdom

On a quest for knowledge

February 04, 2005

The Cross Roads Phenomena

By James Anderson

Well it’s been a while since my last post. Its been incredibly busy at the office in the last week now that we have come to the end of the post Christmas slow down in sales and have started to pick up new business again. If you don’t already know I work for Podium Solutions IT Consultancy in Manchester, UK and Podium Network Solutions, a complimentary site that concentrates on the Network side of things and has also just secured distribution rights with one the biggest VoIP Business telephone systems manufacturers in the world. I’m really looking forward to this year, with new clients and market sectors to work with, IP telephone systems being just one them. I’m sure this year is going to be one of the most exciting ever in the realm of search with new innovations drastically changing the very fabric of the internet it self. I will be posting and commenting on this as and when anything happens.

Already this year we have had some pretty juicy news and probably one of the biggest events of the year has already happened, yep the new MSN search engine launch. The launch of MSN’s new search engine has already caused frantic searching, tracking and some head scratching which has lead to some quite nasty calluses in the office. I have to say that so far I am very impressed with their new search engine and it has been an absolute dream optimising pages for it, its just so nice to be concentrating on content rather then exploiting links. So it’s a big thank you to MSN for bringing on-page optimisation back to the forefront of SEO. How long this will last is another question as we have already seen several tweaks to the algo so more emphasis on link analysis could on the cards, I only hope that MSN stays away from that road and the other search engines follow suit. PLease let links return to the good old days, when links were used purely to link to sites that the webmaster thought were usefull and benifited their users and not just a tool that has to be exploited in order to acheive an online presence.


For the last month I have been searching for the UK search engine market share statistics but have been unable to find any I would consider reliable, please read this as a cry for help and answer by leaving a comment on this post (PLEASE). As per usual locating the US market share is no problem what so ever but that’s not really relevant for us UK subjects. This quest comes from seeing reports suggesting Google has finally started to lose its total domination and a very worrying news report on the ITV news, reporting on the MSN search release stating that the UK market share for search was currently Google around 50% followed by Ask Jeeves at 20% with Yahoo coming in at the third spot with only 7% of market share. Where ITV are getting their figures from I don’t know but it does not sound right to me, what are your thoughts? Also in the news report they stated that the MSN search was not producing relevant results and had a lot of ground to make up when comparing it with Google for the search term “How big is the Internet” and then went on to say although MSN’s relevance was an issue many websites had already started to advertise with them. Obviously ITV doesn’t have anyone working for them that actually understands how advertising works on the internet thinking that MSN’s adverts are independently driven like Google’s Adwords, Well if they need someone who knows the ins and outs of the web I would just like to say I’m available for hire and you can contact me by leaving your details using the comment button below. In all honesty the report sounded like it was sponsored by Google.


OK enough ranting and back to the actual theme of this blog. So what’s been happening on the SEO forums recently, well in a nutshell “nothing”, a very big NOTHING. So here is a thread I came across today. Using Plurals Or Singular Versions Of Keywords on the Highrankings SEO forum. Just one of usual threads on whether to use plural keywords or not.


So this brings me on to the actual point of this post, is the SEO Forum Watch working and to put it simply (in nutshell), the answer is a very big NO. I started the SEO Forum Watch in the hope that I could attract some users who would actively help to build the SEO Forum Watch by making their own posts and commenting on others. Well I know that your reading this and I know the SEO Forum Watch gets a fair amount of traffic, so what am I doing wrong? What do I have to do in order to get you all posting and contributing? Or was the SEO Forum Watch just another one of my really dumb ideas like the time I thought it would be a laugh to wear my armbands on my ankles in the middle of a swimming lesson back in primary school. Or the time I tried to get into a beach festival without paying by trying to climb down the 90 foot cliff that surrounded it after drinking a crate of super strength lager only to discover my climbing skills are lacking to say the least, although I eventually landed in the festival after bouncing, pirouetting and somersaulting, discovered it is quite difficult dance at a dance festival when you’ve nearly broken both legs.
Well I think I have demonstrated some of my better ideas but is the SEO Forum Watch worth perusing in its current format. Several months after starting the SEO Forum Watch I discovered well established blog based on the very same theme of SEO Forum Watch, providing one place to keep up with the best threads from the best SEO forums, the only difference being Threadwatch.org seems to be successful rather than just a one man attempt at providing a blog that feels like a ghost town. I only heard of Threadwatch.org after a comment was made on one of my posts about a cloaking thread, saying that I should not be promoting the use cloaking to persons new to SEO. A fair and just comment if the SEO Forum Watch was specifically targeting webmasters new SEO, a little comment tennis was played where I was accused of being someone new to SEO who had no idea about cloaking and to tried and prove this by hiding the entire Threadwatch.org content with cloaking the site when I tried to visit (the things that people will do to try and win a debate lol). I’m not a confrontational person so I decided to let them have the last comment so they could revile over their little victory and in all honesty is was the first of only a couple comments made on SEO Forum Watch so I was just happy that someone had made a comment and hoped it was the start of a snowball. I guess I didn’t make any friends out of that which was a shame as Threadwatch.org is a big blog with loads of good content and has the same user base as I was trying to target. Threadwatch.org, you would have been a good friend but I guess you just couldn’t handle the competition from one of the best ghost towns the blogging community has ever seen. I came, I saw, I just couldn't conker.


For all of you who are still reading this post, please accept my apologies for my constant tangent bound rambling.
Back to the point (yes I’m going to finally spit it out), what I’m trying to say is that I do not think that continuing the SEO Forum Watch in its current format is worthy of my time and will be looking at changing the format completely. Please let me know your thoughts on this, you’re the people I’m writing for so its only fair if the SEO Forum Watch is going change and head in another direction that you should have your say on the destination.
I think I may start concentrating less on SEO forums and rather the topic of SEO in general. This would make it easier to start new posts as I would not be restricted by having to wait for a juicy new thread to be started on a forum and I would also personally enjoy posting a lot more.
Please let me know your thoughts? I’m at a crossroads, theirs a definite fork in the road and at present I can only see the road signs facing my way. Along time ago one of the signs said your entering a town called Ghost and I have still not seen the sign that says “you’re now leaving Ghost Town”. Please if you have map or just a good sense of direction, help someone out who is feeling slightly lost.

I must stop making posts when I have had a few drinks. Sorry for the spelling!