Because I forget stuff. Part of

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Originally posted June 19 2004 at 21:06 under Web. 0 Comments. Trackbacks Disabled.

And Rambling

From the link refered to in my last post I somehow moved on to another blog post, this one discussing a competition for search engine optimizers. That got me to thinking. Why is it so important to be number one in Google’s page rank? Obvioulsy it needs to be that the pages can be found by a search engine. However, really I’m very rarely influenced by what’s top of the list. When I am it’s almost always because I’m looking for the answer to a pretty specialised technical question, and then I’ll just search down until I find my answer. Rather than top hit I tend to return to sites I trust and have a good reputation. And just how do I know which sites they are? Nothing to do with web really I don’t think, but it’s damn hard to put my finger on. I think in general they’re sites which real people I’ve met have recommended. And after that sites which have been mentioned on blogs I trust, which is just one step removed from the first reason in the online world (excluding sites such as Amazon which are in the list because they’ve been around so long, back to my introduction to the net.
If you’re not a site actually selling something (OK, if you’re a shoe shop you might want to be top of the search for shoe shops) then I don’t think it’s worth being top of the searches. People will go where they know, not where the search results take them. Is that wrong? Do the general public really just go where Google’s I’m Feeling Lucky takes them? I do, occasionally, but only if I’m looking for a pretty specific thing (eg Seti@Home. But to find something beyond that-only if I know nothing about it, and therefore don’t know who to trust by unidentifiable means, and so won’t trust anyone fully anyway.

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This Crazy Fool

Dr Ian Scott
Croydon (and Gateshead), United Kingdom
Bullding Services Engineer (EngDesign), PhD in Physics (University of York), football fanatic (Newcastle United), open source enthusiast (mainly Mozilla)

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