17 responses to “Guest Post: SEO for writers? Forget about it”

  1. Tweets that mention Guest Post: SEO for writers? Forget about it | WordCount -- Topsy.com

    […] This post was mentioned on Twitter by MichelleRafter, Lydia Dishman. Lydia Dishman said: Good stuff from @rondoylewrites New on WordCount | SEO for writers? Forget about it. http://bit.ly/9vAlx0 via @MichelleRafter […]

  2. Jackie Dishner

    Good interview. I agree with Rubin 100 percent. And I love your profile shot. You picked the one I picked! 🙂

    1. Michelle V. Rafter

      She’s definitely a contrarian but makes some good points.

      And I like that picture of R.S.D. too.


  3. Sara

    Excellent article – I laughed and I learned a couple things.

    I agree with Rubin, but I’d be lying if I said I didn’t study Google Analytics to see what keywords my visitors used to find me. Sometimes I think SEO is hopeful-thinking combined with morbid curiosity:)

    1. Michelle V. Rafter

      Ron’s a funny guy, as his BlogSaladBlog.com work shows.


  4. Alexandra Grabbe

    1.) Content matters.
    2.) Stick to your subject.

    Thanks for this introduction to Rubin’s blog, with which I was not familiar. I wonder if her topic is part of the reason for, how many? 60,000 unique views per month? That’s tough to achieve when you write about a place, even an extraordinarily beautiful place like Wellfleet. Let’s see. If I have 200/day, x 30 = 6000. That certainly puts 60,000 in perspective. 10 times as many. Did the blog get as many hits before the book became a best-seller, I wonder?

  5. Babette

    I LOVE reading this…Go Gretchen. Thanks for sharing this. And Ron, I so appreciate your comment about Google being hopeful thinking combined with morbid curiosity…perfect.

  6. Carson Brackney

    Not thinking about SEO and not engaging in SEO-friendly practices are two different things.

    Rubin wasn’t consciously pursuing a search optimization strategy, but a lot of what she was doing was extremely helpful in that regard. Her effort to become ubiquitous led her to post her blog content and, one would assume, some other content on a variety of third-party sites. Most of those efforts created backlinks to her site and those backlinks are the currency of off-site SEO.

    We also know that search engines appreciate frequent updates and new content. The fact that she was updating her Typepad on a daily basis was SEO-friendly, too.

    You can generate traffic without a great deal of SEO-influenced behavior if you’re writing great material that people want to read and share. However, that only works if someone is reading you in the first place. Rubin was creating that necessary foundation all along, even if it wasn’t really intentional.

    After that foundation was in place, her content took over. People could find it and read it. Then, they could add to her backlink portfolio by sharing it.

    This interview is great because it reminds readers that algorithm studying and link creation scheming isn’t always necessary. You need to do what it takes to be seen and then, if you’re doing something great, everything else will fall into place.

    SEOs will tell you that they could increase her traffic dramatically with a few tweaks and changes in terms of site structure. They might be right, too. On-site SEO does have value and it’s not something one should completely ignore if he or she is interested in maximizing traffic.

    However, Rubin shows that you can build an audience without getting so wrapped up in the minutiae of SEO that it compromises your writing. That’s something every writer (and every webmaster) should keep in mind.

    1. Michelle V. Rafter

      Well put Carson, and means a lot coming from someone as experienced in writing and SEO as you are.


  7. Eric Novinson

    I agree with Carson here. You don’t have to intentionally use SEO methods to benefit from their use. After all, Google’s attempting to provide good links.
    SEO gets a bad reputation sometimes when clients force a writer to use what they think are effective SEO methods, which can lead to bad writing. Many of the clients who ask for “SEO articles” also pay very little, so they don’t get good articles anyway.

  8. Kathy Murray

    Great interview, Ron. It’s nice to read about someone focusing on content rather than how to game search engines, though I agree with Carson that Rubin was smart in laying the foundation for folks to find her stuff all along.

    Btw, I like the personal pic you ultimately chose as well. Kind of captures the spirit of your writing.

  9. Jackie Dishner

    Carson, I like how you put this. You make SEO seem like a less foreign object that I avoid because I don’t quite understand it and want to mess it up. You make it seem more understandable. Thanks.

  10. Joanie

    What does SEO mean to a Vietnamese girl, with no SEO /web experience who only wants to set up an honest oriental gift shop? My Blog – http://digitalhighstreet.blogspot.com/

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