Insights from a Grandaddy Webmaster.
I am a 61 year old webmaster with ten sites up and running and maybe my view is simplified - I do not pretend to understand the Google techies, just try to work with them and offer the best quality content I can to my viewers.
Do you really just want to see what the search engines 'think' you want to see when you hit the search button? Surely this is akin to censorship and we are heading for an internet world governed by the big SE operators.
Personally I prefer it as it was a few years ago - type in a single keyword and you got the lot! When you have been surfing for a while you learn how to tell the good content from bad and also how to modify the keyword input to control what comes up. Surely this is how it should be - we don't need search engines to tell what we do and don't like. All we want them to do [and what Google is currently trying to with its' Panda alogarithm] is to bring up sites with good content first and leave the real crappy sites down at the bottom where they belong. But it seems that both Google and Facebook are heading down the road to only serving up what they 'think' we want to see. Push the 'like' button and you are working with them. I'll look for another Search Engine that serves me the lot I think...just like the old days ahhhh..Scroogle Scraper was great but pressure from the big boys and lack of funds seems to have made it disappear.
Search Engine Optimisation.
I use SEO PowerSuite for both on and off-site optimisation work which saves having to pay out dollars to so-called SEO "experts" most of whom seem to be living in the internet past. A lot of these people really do not seem to be able to perform the magic they say they can - you've seen the headline often enough 'Page #1 on Google - Guaranteed' total BS!! Be prepared to do most of the hard work yourself.
An absolute boon for guys like myself and many other younger webmasters I suspect. Thanks very much to Wordpress for giving us the ability to produce professional sites with all the 'bells and whistles' we care to use. I started on the web in 1995 and struggled to learn html and the rest but running 'bricks and mortar' businesses as well did not allow the time to learn how to build a professional looking site quickly. You can see the evolution of my oldest site just go to Wayback Machine and enter http://www.thaiboating.com then click 'show all' - wow, when I look at these old shots I wonder how the clicks came in and we managed to survive - this site has not had any other form of media advertising.
It took me weeks to build that first site in 2002. I am glad I did as the site now is well indexed for its' keywords, however, thanks to Wordpress I can now have a great looking site up and running in a couple of days - normally using a premium template from companies like Press 75 though, to ensure a polished look. And thanks to SEO PowerSuite and a couple of other software items the sites can be indexed and progressing upwards within a few days.
These are, in my opinion, the most difficult part of SEO to obtain but the most effective for making your site known. Better throw in some paid banner ads and manual link exchanges with other quality sites as well.
Linkmaster does the job with a reasonable amount of data input and thought from the operator. Thought needs to go in to the words you use to look up potential backlink partners. Too near to your keywords only brings up the competition, I need sites that are complimentary, not the same eg. for boat building keywords a list of similar words to lead to sites like Marine Hardware, Marine Engines, Marinas etc. would be somewhere to start.
More to come as I slowly set up an online "empire" for retirement days....
BTW here is a good site exposing internet scams ScammerBlacklist.