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Is Google the IRS of the Internet for Keyword Ranking?

Google Keyword rankingProbably one of the first outside professionals your business contracted with was an accountant or tax professional. Most executives aren’t familiar with the intricacies of the Internal Revenue Code, and if you did invest the time to learn the thousands of pages of rules that might impact your business, they’d inevitably change.  

Putting that responsibility in the hands of a professional who can focus on staying abreast of those changes and analyzing what those developments mean for your business is just good sense. 

When it comes to building keyword ranking for the terms your customers are entering into search engines, it’s not always immediately obvious to business leaders that the same principle applies.  True, no government agency is going to turn up to toss you in jail or levy large fines if you don’t manage your SEO correctly, but those mistakes do come at a price. 

How Google is Like the IRS

When it comes to achieving competitive keyword ranking, the rules and processes are every bit as complicated as the Internal Revenue Code.  And, just when you think you have a system underway that provides maximum advantage to your business, the rules change.

Just as you employ an outside tax professional to manage those shifting requirements from the IRS, you should seriously consider obtaining SEO services from a dedicated professional in that arena.  Keyword ranking is their business, and they’re devoted full-time to keeping up on the evolving rules of the search engine ranking game—just like your accountant is dedicated to keeping on top of the latest developments from the IRS.

The Key Difference between Google and the IRS

Both Google and the IRS have a significant impact on the profitability of your business, and both promulgate a detailed and complex set of rules and processes you must follow if you want to avoid negative results.  In one sense, however, the IRS is easier to work with:  the Internal Revenue Code may be thousands of pages long, but the rules are all spelled out explicitly, and the IRS gives fair warning when they’re going to change.  Not so for Google.

While Google applies a very specific algorithm to determine the search engine placement of any page, there’s no set of bound volumes or website where they’re codified so that we can all clearly understand the rules of the game. Google makes announcements about some big changes, like the Panda Update that put a new premium on fresh content of certain types.  However, most of the hundreds of factors that go into determining your keyword ranking remain a secret. And, those announcements are typically contemporaneous with the change, not months in advance like those we receive from the IRS.

How SEO Services Can Help

The obvious advantage to contracting for professional SEO management is that you can rely on the experts to understand the complex rules and stay up to date, freeing you up to focus on the substance and operations of your business.  The not-so-obvious but equally important upside to expert SEO services is that professionals who are involved in the industry on a day-to-day basis have knowledge that reaches far beyond the pieces of the puzzle Google has decided to share with us. 

If you really wanted to invest the time, you could read the Internal Revenue Code.  However, if you really wanted to learn everything you needed to know in order to improve your keyword ranking on competitive terms, your process wouldn’t be quite so simple. You could read the direction that Google has offered, and following those rules and tips would improve your position somewhat. But real SEO success requires digging much deeper than the information that’s made readily available to the public: it requires experience and testing. It also requires an understanding nuanced enough to allow you to review the conflicting advice you’ll find on the Internet and discern which to follow, which to ignore and which requires further experimentation.

SEO professionals already have that knowledge and experience, already have the testing procedures in place and already know which other experts they can rely on for useful information and who should be ignored.  Re-inventing that wheel makes no more sense for your business than memorizing the Internal Revenue Code.

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