Tuesday, October 7, 2014

The (creative free and open) web has been killed by Google

The web is dead
this is so sad
it makes me mad!!

Okay, that's of course not entirely true, it's not the web that's dead, it's the web as an opportunity for creative people that has stopped to exist.

And yes, the claim Google had killed it all is not without merit.

Some of you SEO's might wonder, so i'll add a case study here.

I'll take you to a presumed paradise island for this, a popular winter get away for Europeans, far off the European mainland, off the North African West Coast in the Atlantic Ocean.
You already guessed it?
Yep, i am taking you to the Canary Islands, and there to one of the smaller islands called La Palma.

Say you have a nice Finca there with adjoining guest house that could be rented out to tourists from central Europe or where ever else.
But, your entire island is off the beaten path's of almost anything.
So, the only way you could reach out to potential customers is really the internet.

In this particular case a real person did exactly this, created a website, did the standard SEO stuff that was necessary back in the early 2000's to get the website found in big G etc.

The usual standard SEO back then was: saturating each page with the most important keyword or phrases, in this case something like "La Palma vacation rentals" or (in German) "Ferienwohnung La Palma" (see the actual website here).
In addition the website had to be submitted to whatever took submissions or dealt with vacation rentals or La Palma in general.

A bit later the irrational boom of social sharing sites started to unfold, so they had to also sign-up for plenty of those and do the usual promo run of their website there, and that was that.

This actually worked, the above named website was for years top ten for searches for La Palma vacation rentals etc.

But as IT keeps on evolving so did Google evolve with their infamous algorithms.
It seems since Google became a filthy rich publicly traded big Corporation they applied the bad old "feed the rich and tax the poor" methodology to their super algos.

Perhaps the idea is now that the more anyone invests in a website the more Google likes this website.
Good SEO these days means apparently that a site owner spends 500 or more a year for a security certificate for instance.
What does you personal creative website need an SSL certificate for??

None really, unless your site has a shopping cart or other sensitive functions built in, so, if you don't have such functions you do not need to waste any money on an SSL, and if you don't ... well, Google might just treat you as a second class virtual citizen!

If you are able to employ 10 IT staffers that make your website look and behave really really well you are one of them, "them" being brothers and sisters of the chosen few next to big G and Co. - if you can't put in a million or so, well, sorry buddy, try to get a life in real life perhaps, that's what the situation looks like today.

Back to the case study above, that's exactly where that site stands now, despite it's steadiness over all these years, a small site like this does no longer seem to have a chance today.
Others simply bought domain names like "vacaton-rentals-la-palma.something or lapalma-ferienwohnung.something" and voila, these oh so "clever" algorithms actually think that site is better, all though that's just baloney though of (but never totally thorough) by some techno head in front of mind activity lowering screens and keyboards.

Google likes the biggies now.

But, think of it, if you go online and want to find a vacation rental somewhere in the world, from some private owner rather than some robotic humoungous website that just exists so it can cream of some percentages off the actual owners plus some more percentages off renters, and in the process just making everything more expensive, how do you still find those sites on big G these days??
You think you can just add "from private owners" to your search criteria?
Forget it, big G will still display their beloved biggies on top, and what this means to you is big G does not serve you well anymore, their current role is a bit like the role of an art gallery owner who will only exhibit art work he / she likes or deems as possibly successful for his / her business.

If your search just lands you in the hands of such big websites your real search has only just begun, because now you have to start muddling through all these big sites to figure out where you can get what you really wanted to find on big G in the first place.

You might as well skip using Google to search for specific things and instead go straight to a site you know will give you what you want.

Of course, the other downside of the current situation at big G's search is that this kills the spirit on all the small regular people who just wanted to be creative and get a little slice of opportunity online.
You might think it doesn't matter if they are all gone because their websites suck, but the observations at the small web directories level tells a different story or at least the story from a different angle ... the web is indeed dying.
They drop like flies these days, all these websites some entity once paid for, domain names, web hosting, web design and maintenance and whatever peripherals, they made up a huge junk of income for so many SME that served these types of customers, now more like begging for these types of customers, because once the smallies realize they have no chance anymore of getting their sites into that small window of the web people searching through they will give up, why waste time and money if there nothing coming of it??

Summarized, the virtual world is now a mere reflection of the real world, a few biggies control everything and everyone and the smallies can only work hard to feed the biggies and eat crumbs all the while.