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The Art of Letting Go (of Google)

Jennifer Ledbetter

by PotPieGirl on April 17, 2012 · 135 comments

There comes a point in many relationships that one realizes that it’s time to let go… time to move on.  It’s hard – especially when you’ve been conditioned to feel as tho you NEED that relationship.  It’s a scary place to be when you know deep down that the relationship needs to end, but you can’t let go of the feeling that you still NEED that relationship.

Once upon a time, I had a job I loved.  I ended up in that male-dominated business (golf) purely by accident.  A course asked me to work there part time – in exchange, I not only got paid for my time, I also received free golf on that course.

Worked for me!  I had 2 little kids in school at that time so 2 days a week I worked at the course while they were in school.  I was a stay-at-home mom until that point so yes, it also felt good to get out and do something for me.  The pay wasn’t the thing for me, nor was the free golf.  The situation just fit and I loved it.

Time moved on and I found out not only how much I loved it, but that I was pretty darn good at it too.  I ended up working more, getting more involved and educated in the business, and still having a flexible schedule to fit my kids needs.

Yep, That's Me Teeing Off

Flash forward a few years and I was offered the Head Pro position at a new course they were building.  To be clear, I am not a teaching Pro, or a PGA Pro, I was being hired as the managing Pro to run the course.  Still, not the norm in the golf business to offer that job to a female.

I loved the business and I loved the company I worked for so wanting to take that job offer was a no-brainer for me.  However, my personal life at the time was not exactly conducive to me working full-time in such a position that would require a lot of me.  Opening a new course is not exactly easy.

Thing is, even tho the pending new job made NO sense in my ‘at-this-exact-moment’ situation, there was this deep gut feeling that I should take the job offer and be ready to transfer when the time came (which was at least 6 months or more into the future).

Oddly, the gut feeling figured prominently.  In the following months, I made a big decision to leave that marriage – and it was a big decision, but I knew that relationship had to end.

That job offer became the biggest blessing because it gave me a way to support myself and my kids.  The course opened and my new life began.  The new course was minutes from home and my kid’s schools, I loved my job, I could pay my bills…all was awesome.

Then, things started happening both with my business life and my personal life.  With the stroke of a judge’s pen, I became 100% responsible for my kids in all aspects.  Weird changes started within the company I worked for at the same time – and they were not good changes.

One day it hit me – I no longer loved this job like I used to…. but I NEEDED that paycheck.  I also realized that I am AWESOME with customer service, customer acquisition, and customer retention, but I really sucked at management and delegation (I also detested mundane tasks like paperwork and scheduling).  I’m a people person and not a desk person which made me a fantastic Assistant Pro, but a not-so-great Head Pro.

Sadly, I was SOOOO wrapped up in my NEED for that relationship to continue, that I didn’t have the you-know-whats to make a change.  When you’re 100% responsible for the care, feeding, and nurturing of two young human beings, fear is a BIG reason you don’t make changes.

Naturally, things got worse.  My lack of any passion for the job showed more and more…and as expected, I got fired.

It sucked.  I’ve NEVER been fired before…so to call that moment “humbling” would be a huge understatement.

But here’s the kicker – it was the BEST thing that ever happened to me business/career-wise.  That single event FORCED me to explore new avenues and also to do what I needed to do in order to keep the roof over our heads.  (Just to note: the company I worked for ended up folding not too long after that.)

That was back in June 2005….now here I am almost 7 years later with 5 of those years spent working online.

I’d say I did alright.  :)

But oddly I find myself, yet again, involved in a relationship that just might need to come to an end.

I  ended up in this relationship in a very similar way I ended up in the golf business.  I eased my way in, realized I loved it, and then programmed myself to believe I NEEDED it.

That relationship is with Google – and it very well might be time to let it go.

But THIS time, I WILL have the you-know-whats to make those changes before Google makes them FOR me.

I’ve let Google have too much control and once I gave them that control, the ol’ mentality of “NEED” festered more and more.

I don’t need Google…and neither do you.

Yes, they are THE source of free organic traffic (right now) – and YES, if you can just figure out what the heck they want, you can enjoy great traffic and perhaps even great profits.

But we’ve become complacent.

Relying on Google, or ANY single source, for the ultimate success of your online business is a big mistake.  The whole ‘get ranked and become a millionaire’ concept is long gone (if it ever existed at all).

That’s not a business – that’s a trend..and trends are short-lived and unpredictable.

Sure, I’ll still appreciate when Google loves me – we sure have had some good times and continue to do so – but my reliance on that relationship is over.  My gut is telling me something that no one wants to hear, but the writing is on the wall.

Sadly, when things go haywire (as they have been lately) the majority of the community hyper-focuses on what to do to get Google to love them again, as opposed to putting their head down and figuring out every option and alternative avenue that could and CAN grow their business without relying on Google and their fickle ways.

What’s ironic to me is that in all of Google’s supposed attempts to make things better, they have actually turned things into a horrible cluster of a mess.  What they call “transparency” is more like spreading FUD in the community (FUD means: Fear, Uncertainty, and Doubt).

Who wants to be in a relationship when one person keeps the upper hand simply by inducing FEAR in the other?

I feel that most couple’s therapists would call that a toxic relationship, wouldn’t they?

“If you don’t figure out what I want and give it to me, I won’t love you – and you’re nothing if I don’t love you.”

Heck, that’s toxic AND passive-aggressive with a nice dose of narcissism thrown in!

What DOES Google want? 

Now I am just one little woman working and watching from her home office in Georgia, but I really don’t think Google even knows what they want anymore.  All of this going on lately has a “desperate” smell to it.  Add in Google’s proposed stock split that they will put before their shareholders in June mixed with all the other legal issues and criticisms and it certainly makes me feel that something is going on – and we might want to consider NOT being involved in it.

Heck, even Google’s own speak out against the search giant:

“Google is too powerful, too arrogant, too entrenched to be worth our love.”

- source

 

“The Google I was passionate about was a technology company that empowered its employees to innovate. The Google I left was an advertising company with a single corporate-mandated focus.”

-source

I’ve begun having this feeling that Google is tired of others making money off of their organic results – and it’s money they (Google) can’t get a piece of…so off they go with all these whacky algo changes to take those earnings away (but they call it ‘making the SERPs better’).

Go ahead, call me crazy… I can take it – and I am more than happy to be wrong here. 

Just before you call me a nut-job, really LOOK at the things that are ranking well now….and the sites that are slowly (or not-so-slowly) finding their way to Google Purgatory.

Perhaps if we each find a way for Google to make money off our pages, then we might be loved?

And no, I don’t mean just toss some AdSense ads on your site so they (Google) make money off your clicks.  That doesn’t work.  If your site sends clicks, but few to no conversions for those AdWords advertisers, Google will NOT love you.

But, if your site DOES send strongly converting clicks to Google’s paying advertisers……well…..think about it.

Regardless of what Google wants, the playing field is NOT level.  In fact, it’s become more and more slanted towards Google than ever before.  The irony is that Google has used OUR content for years to make money.  Our web pages and content gave them billions of search result pages to put their ads on!  And let’s not even get into how much information they have gained from our use of Google products that enables them to better target their ads….ugh!

But now they’re so big that they don’t need us anymore….

And that’s all fine and good.  They absolutely DO need to do what they think is best for their business – but SO DO WE.

If your bottom line is reliant on Google’s actions, and you really care about that bottom line, it’s time to rethink your strategy.

From here on out, any traffic from Google should be seen as a BONUS, not as a business plan.

Find the people in your market and go get them….we can’t rely on Google to send them TO us for free anymore – no matter how good, relevant, and/or compelling your site is.

As the song says, breaking up is hard to do.  However, like with many breakups, this one will force you to be creative and truly take control of your future.

And that, ladies and gentlemen, is never a bad thing.

 

Edit To Add:  My follow-up to this post is found here:  The Real Reason I Broke Up With Google

 

 

 

 



{ 128 comments }

Wondering April 18, 2012 at 12:44 am

You have no idea how right you are. I was thinking the samething about google. As someone who is just starting out with this it’s very hard not to relay google. They have the free tools to get you going, and the information you need to help build your site per say. I’ve heard there are other marketing tools you can use but they too make it hard to be succesful. There is one thing that I learned by reading alot of information sites and other so called guru’s (which is why I’m failing to produce anything, information overload) are getting their adsense banned. So if and when I get one up and running they will be the salt and pepper not the main course.

PotPieGirl April 18, 2012 at 1:03 am

Well said, Wondering!

Paul April 18, 2012 at 4:13 am

Hi Jennifer,
I am in total agreement with your decision to move away from the Google habit.
Fortunately my addiction was short lived and I soon realised that I could never keep up with all the twists and turns needed to stay on the bucking bronco called Google.
My wife and I run two businesses (one service based the other an online shop) and I soon gave up trying to distil the essence of SEO for her as every idea offered was soon under fire and another ‘must do’ SEO trick needed to be implimented.
In short, keep an eye on your website SEO’s but focus on good customer service and build a loyal following of customers who promote you and your business and make Google the Mule it should be.

Carlen April 18, 2012 at 1:22 am

OK, Jennifer. You’ve been at this a long time (in Internet time). Just what will your business model be going forward?

carlen

PotPieGirl April 18, 2012 at 1:25 am

Hiya Carlen =)

Not tremendously different…. just some changed habits and a renewed focus (ie, WAY less time keeping up with Google). The little details I’ll work out as I go along.

carlen April 18, 2012 at 1:41 am

So you’re gonna keep doing/teaching affiliate marketing, organic SEO, etc. etc.?

But just not worry about trying to figure out google’s scrambled mindset?

carlen

PotPieGirl April 18, 2012 at 2:03 am

Doing and teaching – absolutely. I love it and feel that I help a few folks along the way. But yes, a lot less focus on Google’s craziness…

Thanks for asking!

Ashley April 18, 2012 at 7:23 pm

Hi Jennifer,
I am/will be a newbi at OM so I guess I’m lucky because I have no strong attachment to google yet :) I am so glad to hear you will still be teaching. I am purchasing OWM tomorrow and I can’t wait to get started! Will there be any changes in the guide?

Monna Ellithorpe April 18, 2012 at 1:29 am

Hi Jennifer,

Good for you. I’ve basically done the same thing. I quit worrying about Google and I try to concentrate more on my readers interest. Isn’t that what Google tells us anyway?

It is very irritating to have a site doing very well and then on top of being hacked, Google takes it down who knows how many notches. It’s crazy trying to keep up.

There seems to be no rhyme or reason to it. I received a pretty good increase in my adsense earnings this week and come to find out it was from a free Blogger site I made about 4 years ago right after my husband passed away and I haven’t touched that sight for at least 2 years. Go figure.

Thanks for all the great info you provide.

PotPieGirl April 18, 2012 at 1:32 am

Hi Monna =)

Yes, it IS crazy trying to keep up…feels like chasing your own tail at times!

Thanks for stopping by and for tweeting!

Kim van Hoorn April 18, 2012 at 12:36 pm

Hi Jennifer,

My new web site got onto Google’s 1st page for a few weeks without me even knowing about it! (A friend told me) Then it dropped again but I’m not losing sleep over it. Keep up the good work!

David April 19, 2012 at 7:49 pm

Good point, about having a good site doing well in the ranks and then a hacking takes place. One of my sites got dropped that way and it never recovered after that no matter what I did. And to think it was no fault of mine. From then on, I decided not put all my eggs in the Google basket. Very dangerous.

Gerry April 18, 2012 at 1:29 am

You really “hit the nail” on the head on this one. I have been trying to explain to my spouse why income has fallen off. When I explain as best I can about Google and what they do she looks at me with this look like “have you lost it”? I don’t usually get kicked around and I have come to realize over the past 6 months that is exactly what is happening. Not sure what plan B is yet, but it’s not going be dependant on Google search!!

PotPieGirl April 18, 2012 at 1:34 am

Maybe we HAVE “lost it”! hahahahahahaha!

Glad to hear you’re changing things up a bit. I bet it will work out very well for you =)

bj @ Ninja Web Services April 18, 2012 at 1:38 am

I hate to point out the obvious, but this is exactly what Google wants you to do. They don’t want any of us trying to ** game the system **. Just put up a site with great content and keep adding to it and the Google Gods will smile upon you.

PotPieGirl April 18, 2012 at 1:48 am

I hear ya, BJ, but the thing is – many have followed the “just put up a site with great content and keep adding to it”, but the Google gods don’t smile on them. Or, worse yet, they DID smile on them for a while, and then ripped it away.

Now, if we can change that into “just work to create a great site with good content your readers enjoy and don’t worry about the Google gods”…well, that works better for me.

Dana April 18, 2012 at 1:39 am

Hi Jennifer,
You are so right. Unfortunately, anyone who tries to build an online business is told over and over again how to “care about” what google is thinking. Just look at some forums, especially the warrior forum.
Naturally, over time one becomes so conditioned to think only about what google wants that many people forget what their readers want.
I am with you, I love writing and I write because I want the people who read what I write benefit from it. Like Monna (from the comment above) said, that is what Google want anyway.

Dana (btw excellent post)

PotPieGirl April 18, 2012 at 1:50 am

Hiya Dana – thank you!

Yes, we are conditioned that way, but it also happens after we get that first taste of free traffic from Google. That kind of traffic can be awesome, but when it’s taken away it’s seems many will do ANYTHING to get it back again.

It’s like an addiction to Google….

April April 18, 2012 at 1:32 pm

Ha Ha, just like any pusher… the first time it’s free.

Rene' April 18, 2012 at 1:57 am

Hi Jenn,
Google started smelling bad to me when they banned my Ad**words account over a year ago. I finally said “See ya Later!” Here lately, I read that their ad revenue has been dropping off! Humm…I wonder why? LOL. I’ll tell you why. Too big and too damn arrogant.

I found other ways of keeping my online income up and the way I saw it last year, Google traffic is just gravy!

Keep up the great work Jenn !

Jeff the Business Owner April 18, 2012 at 1:59 am

I can’t help but smile.
It is scary to break away from an abusive relationship.
But definitely, it is the most healthy thing to do…
Should I say, goodbye google as well?
I will think about it…

PotPieGirl April 18, 2012 at 2:05 am

Let me know what you decide, Jeff =)

Allan James April 18, 2012 at 2:06 am

Another insightful post Jennifer and you’re quite right – we’ve been focused too much on one source and that source has been Google.

I had my wake up call several months back as I say the goal post moving all the time and, in effect, said “no more, no way!”

Now I don’t even give Google a thought as I write a post at my StartBusinessMentor training blog, I just write to benefit my readers and students. Interestingly the SERP and PR of the site has been rising, on it’s own if you like, and I’m seeing traffic rising from all the search engines.

So now, instead of relying solely on the search engines, so called, ‘free’ traffic’ (it’s not really free anyway if you value you time and the lost opportunity cost of the time it takes to rank) I enjoy the immediacy and effectiveness of Solo and PPV advertising and Affiliate Traffic.

The great thing about handling struggle is it forces us out of the comfort zone and into thinking about, researching and acting on alternatives.

PotPieGirl April 18, 2012 at 2:12 am

You know what, Allan? You’re absolutely right… It’s NOT ‘free’ traffic, is it? Thank you for making that point!

You also said -

“The great thing about handling struggle is it forces us out of the comfort zone and into thinking about, researching and acting on alternatives.”

Well said!!!

Bill (LoneWolf) Nickerson April 18, 2012 at 2:17 am

I’ve never really gotten much from Google despite using some pretty top notch SEO plugins, etc. I don’t write enough or consistently, but the content I have is pretty good in my opinion. But Google doesn’t find it.

I know that their algorithm is aimed at finding stuff that people like, but they’re still a long way off on figuring out exactly how to measure that obviously. Once they do get it figured out they’ll find all of us who continue to put out great content without all the spammy black and gray hat crap. That will be a nice day 8=)

PotPieGirl April 18, 2012 at 2:44 am

Yes, it would be nice if the playing field truly became level…but I’m afraid that Google is too far gone for that to happen.

Just my opinion tho.

Bill (LoneWolf) Nickerson April 19, 2012 at 4:49 pm

You’re probably right, but we can always hope!

Keith April 18, 2012 at 2:39 am

I try not to worry too much about how Google ranks me. I check my webmasters tools daily, but I also have webmasters tools set up for Bing/Yahoo. Although they may not have the users that Google does, I get more traffic from them, probably because I rank higher in those search engines. Even though they are not as big as Google (as far as the search engine), I feel that Microsoft probably has better algorithms than Google, and I try to put as much effort in ranking with those two.

PotPieGirl April 18, 2012 at 2:45 am

Good point, Keith! There are still other search engines, aren’t there ? =)

Deane April 18, 2012 at 2:44 am

As Leslie Rohde says, if you depend on Google traffic you don’t own your business, you are only renting your business from Google. They can take it away from you at any moment – by deranking your site, canceling your adsense account, etc.
But I’m not real clear on the alternative. I just started building an email list (yeah!) but it is growing slowly and for now depends on my traffic from Google searches.

PotPieGirl April 18, 2012 at 2:46 am

I watched that video from Leslie too – and it was not only awesome, but spot on!

Building a list is a great first step to help end a dependence on Google – good for you!!

steve April 18, 2012 at 2:44 am

Why can’t we all just get along? Google doesn’t love us and most of us don’t love them. From a man’s perspective Google is like a woman you can never please that expects you to be able to read her mind. And of course reserves the right to change her mind at any time. I know it’s cliche and don’t want to sound sexist but seems like a good analogy.

There are winds of change in the air and Google is getting more erratic and crazy by the day. I know I should not rely on them but honestly I don’t really know what to replace them with.

It seems ironic Google thrives on practices it forbids. It is all scraped duplicate content. But if we did this we are de indexed. It doesn’t own any of it but makes a fortune off it. We provide it free while they make money off our content that they don’t even own. They throw us a few crumbs along the way to keep us going, the proverbial carrot on a stick.

One thing never mentioned is the idea of free search traffic going away. If you think about it , if Google went to paid indexing they could easily eliminate most of their problems. Then the serps will be just like they want with big stores, corporations and Wikipedia and no troublesome affiliates.

PotPieGirl April 18, 2012 at 2:49 am

Great comments, Steve (minus the “like a woman” part…but I reserve the right to change my mind about that….lol!)

I can totally see the concept of Google going paid. Be interesting to see how it all plays out.

Chris April 18, 2012 at 4:34 am

Also not touching the woman comment, so I’ll skip right ahead to organic search being replaced or “enhanced” by paid results … Yahoo! used to have what was called “paid inclusion” up until a couple years ago. Was basically a PPC model for getting indexed and appearing in the (otherwise) organic search results.

As far as I know, Google’s opinion was that paid inclusion was a failure of search, and that their indexing and ranking should take place solely by “natural” algorithmic means.

With that said, it’s been a long time since the paid inclusion program ended (and much longer since it began), so who knows how Google feels these days.

Kenny April 18, 2012 at 5:15 am

I really don’t think google will get rid of the organic search. If that were the case then anyone who ever searched on google would just be sold to which is a bad user experience. Then most people would just stop using google cause what ever they search would be some product they have to buy.

Don Dolenec April 18, 2012 at 2:45 am

Great post Jenifer
Your marriage comparison to google will be a classic.
Love-Hate
Up-Down
Passive-Agressive
I still have my number one listings and moved up after the last update.
But in the back of my mind is like you..What is their next surprise.
What is the next hoop to jump through. I need to take PPV and so many other
traffic sources than free traffic from google.
Google analytics scares me..they want to know more than a spouse.

The smart ones have moved on years ago. Google slaps,Panda 1-25..I guess we like abusive spouses.
Have a Great Day
Don
Maui,HI

Larry B April 18, 2012 at 2:46 am

Hello Jennifer,

Thank you so much for the great post. You must be reading my mind as I too am tired of the Google Hunger Games! :) I have been cleaning house lately getting off a few lists of so called guru marketers still pumping “ways to beat google” ranking products to the masses.

I only have a handful of people I listen to nowadays and your one of them. I can aways count on you to give it to me straight up both good and bad and I respect you for that!

See you at the top one way or another and thanks again for this well timed post. :)

Larry B.

PotPieGirl April 18, 2012 at 2:50 am

Thank YOU, Larry!!!

Sunita Biddu April 18, 2012 at 3:00 am

I started reading the posts on email itself and couldn’t resist coming here and completing it. You rant well, Jennifer :) There are definitely other search engines (easier to rank and with lesser pain). When we say write great content, it should be great for end user, not for us. Many doesn’t make out a difference and they write textually unique and original but not always valuable and great for end user. I believe serving and targeting primarily the user interest first, stay social (I’d have some mercy at G+ too and use it too :D), get in demand and heck, let Google follow us.

It’s always a pleasure to read you :)

Davies April 18, 2012 at 3:02 am

I’m glad to have found someone like you who think think out of the box. I have just started about a year ago and it was a year of a long learning curve. The first thing they ” The Experts” pound into your already messed up head is “Duplicate” contents. Avoid them at all cost as Gung ho Gaga Google (GGG) will penalize you. This is what I’ve been doing, No Duplicate Contents!

Surprise! Surprise! About a week ago as I was doing some keyword research, checking the sites, I fell upon sites that were well ranked by GGG, all on the 1st page and one had PR 3!! Guess what !!?? The Pr3 site had 2 or 3 of his pages, ranking 1& 2 respectively for different keywords but with the same contents. I was intrigued, so I decided to check it out..He had the same contents throughout his pages (must have been at least 5 pages). The contents weren’t even spun and he was highly ranked.
The other sites were crappy thin sites with ads everywhere and one was just a squeeze page!!

Now How Do You Explain That !!!??? Where is the logic behind all these “Please GGG And You’ll Be Rewarded” or GGG wants to make it a pleasant experience for the Internet users or GGG wants sites to be as informative as possible even Grandmama can pick up something…

I have been honest with GGG and yet a few days ago my computer was blocked by GGG because it says they have detected unusually too much movements on my laptop..MERDE!! I’m a marketer so I do a lot of research but why now!! I did what GGG recommended – uploaded a software I think it’s called “Hijack This” to detect any spyware, malware,… athritis, conjuctivitis ;) and all the evilware that exist on this planet. I still have this problem and every 2 searches I do GGG makes me fill in the captcha page..

GGG has too much control and monopoly over us and the virtual world & success has turned into an arrogant monster.

Unfortunately, I can’t afford to pay for FB ads or any paid ads other wise I would have left this lunatic power crazed GGG sometime ago ;(

PS..You always come out with interesting topics to read.

David April 18, 2012 at 3:33 am

I know. Want to have some fun? Do a Google search for Make Money Online. There is a blogspot blog in the top 10. It has been in the top 10 now for over a week. IT HAS NO CONTENT!!! Yep, not 1 single post. There are 1,750,000,000 competing pages yet google has felt for over a week now that is a top 10 website. Go figure

David April 18, 2012 at 3:38 am

And by the way thats just how long I have been checking it. I have no idea how long it’s actually been on page 1 of Google

PotPieGirl April 18, 2012 at 3:41 am

Nice to see someone else notice that! Yep, no content at all on that blogspot site anymore. It USED to be a site (tho I still don’t think it’s what Google claims they want in the top 10 for a query like that).

See that site in the WayBack Machine here:

http://web.archive.org/web/20110714032010/http://makemoneyforbeginners.blogspot.com/

I know what Google SAYS about content, but from my testing, it’s just not true. Granted, I test on a small scale, but it’s enough to make me realize that what they say does not reflect reality.

Same is true regarding “duplicate content”….

David April 18, 2012 at 3:25 am

The way Google is going they are seriously starting to act like a company that suffers from bipolar disorder.They should start taking Prozac and come back to the middle again. I have been exploring other avenues that do not include Google for sometime now. You almost have to these days or end up pulling all your own hair out when the big G destroys all your work with latest algo-flavor-of-the-month change for the so called better user results.

I broke up them for good after they started seeing a Panda behind my back. Good riddance

PotPieGirl April 18, 2012 at 3:42 am

“…after they started seeing a Panda behind my back”…. hhahahahahahahaha! Too funny!

Eddie April 18, 2012 at 4:06 am

Jennifer,
Your e-mail and this post came just on the right time.
This weekend I have deleted all my sites from Google webmaster and most of them from Google analytic’s.
I have been reading about paid advertising on Google and Yahoo.
Your mail just makes me feel a little more assured that what I did was (probably) the right thing at this moment.
I will miss your analyzes and google strategies, that you always shared with us.
And I want to thank you for all these posts about Googles latest changes.
I am sure you will keep us updated with new ways to drive traffic to our sites.
Eddie

Davies April 18, 2012 at 4:22 am

Eddie, good luck to you and you’re right about it except that not many of us have the courage to do it. All we do is complain and hope for the best unfortunately.

I have refused to use google analytics on my sites despite what was preached by the GURUs !
They have absolutely no idea on what they preached OR maybe they do after all ! Makes me wonder ;)

PotPieGirl April 18, 2012 at 4:35 am

Thanks, Eddie. I have really enjoyed ‘deciphering’ Google and sharing with y’all, but I don’t think it’s responsible of me to keep all of you focused there as well. Google does not make or break our online businesses and I don’t need to keep focusing on them.

I’m not saying I will NEVER post about Google again (I’m pretty sure I won’t be able to help myself…lol), but I want to remove my focus more from a mindset point of view and get back to my ‘roots’.

Jonathon@affiliatesouth April 18, 2012 at 4:17 am

Personally I have never taken much notice of the big gorilla and as for those ugly AdSense ads I wouldn’t have them anywhere near my sites.

As you correctly pointed out what G says and what G does are poles apart and anyone trying to keep up with their mystery algos would simply lose the hair off the head and not get any work done. Duplicate content is all over their serps contrary to any claims they make on that subject.

Seems to me that most people complaining about ranking tumbles, getting de-indexed, etc are those who bought into those automated backlinking schemes and other unnatural stuff they I personally avoid. Each grumble I read on that topic tells me to keep avoiding those schemes.

All I know is that enough people somehow find my sites, click on links and send me a few dollars plus today a company I had never heard of emailed requesting a guest post and offering to pay for the privilege so life can’t be too bad.

Rocktivity April 18, 2012 at 4:21 am

From day one, I’ve been complaining about Google’s monopolistic approach and attacks on affiliates. I’ve never bought into their theory that longer articles with fewer keywords and less selling was the way to make money online if you couldn’t afford PPC. You write until you cramp and backlink until your back breaks, all so Google can slap you down for not being one of their big bucks advertisers? And don’t forget how they pulled the plug on Wealthy Affiliate’s API without so much as a day’s notice. Well, they’re not the only search engine in the sea, and if we unite, we can destroy them just as easily as we built them. Welcome to the revolution!!!!

Davies April 18, 2012 at 4:28 am

Rocktivity, exactly my sentiment ! Exactly what I was saying today to some of my friends, Crush GGG to a pulp but so many of us depend on GGG’s traffic ;(

PotPieGirl April 18, 2012 at 4:40 am

Hey Rocktivity!!

Things certainly are a mess at this moment Google-wise, and yes, I am changing my focus, but I really don’t care anything about ‘destroying’ Google. They will meet their own fate with or without my interference.

Like you, I don’t believe the length of an article or the keyword density or any of that matters at all as far as ranking. There is much more going on than that (and we see proof of that every time we search Google and poke thru the results). I also feel strongly that if there isn’t a way for Google to make money off our rankings, then we will POOF into oblivion. Time will tell…..

Eli April 18, 2012 at 4:25 am

PotPieGirl! I just spent an hour in the car on the way back from dinner talking about this very topic. The timing of your post is perfect and offers that reaffirmation that we sometimes need to feel comfortable our thoughts are on the right track. Google is a love/hate relationship for many people but is starting to lean more towards the latter for a lot of folks.

I cringe when I go to forums and hear people say things like “Google loves my sites. All you have to do is give them what they want.” Well, those people are in for a rude awakening. I ranked for highly profitable keywords for years and made tens of thousands for a single phrase. Then, out of the blue…Amazon, WebMD, and a host of other big boys and girls came rumbling into the first page spots. Are they optimized for the phrase? No. Do their pages deliver better or more info than mine? Not necessarily. But, that’s part of the game. If the site is more profitable to Google overall, they don’t care who has the best suited page—you will get bumped.

About a year ago, one of the internet’s top marketers made a video and he was wearing a white t-shirt with a leather coat. He opened the coat and it said “eff Google” across the t-shirt.

He said what you said but a little more directly. The bottom line is this…Do not fear Google. Thanks for a great post.

-An Old WA Friend

PotPieGirl April 18, 2012 at 4:47 am

Hey Eli!!

I don’t hate Google (and sure hope no one takes that as the point of my post). I am still fascinated by them. I mean c’mon… 2 college guys get a wild idea to find a way to index and rank ALL the web pages and documents in the WORLD…and then it turns into the monstrosity that is Google present-day. Wow!

However, I *do* feel as if they have lost focus and direction. Google is all over the place now and has so many other properties and products that they appear to show favoritism towards. That’s not a good thing at all.

I really wish they would go back to being the amazing search engine they once were instead of trying to get in the social space and shove that, and their other products, down our throats. The average search consumer is MUCH smarter and much more aware about the ways of search these days….I find it hard to believe that only those that work online are seeing these changes.

Thank you for stopping by!!!

Darrell April 18, 2012 at 4:52 am

Google has for a while now attempted to be ahead of the nefarious scheming that they consider SEO to be. We all know there are those who try to cheat the system and those who try to do things the right way. But rather than figure out better ways to weed out the bad apples of SEO, Google has decided to throw the baby out with the bathwater (so to speak) in the latest algo changes. Sadly, it appears they are finally willing to compromise the quality of organic search in order to thwart those in the SEO community and prove that they cannot be “gamed.”

So many of us are looking into Pinterest, YouTube and other traffic sources. Might there be a forthcoming post from you on some other viable alternatives to Google traffic? I think I speak for many on here that would greatly appreciate your wisdom in this area.

PotPieGirl April 19, 2012 at 4:32 am

Of course, Darrell – I like to share what I learn and try =)

steve April 18, 2012 at 4:57 am

If you think Google doesn’t have paid inclusion already just look at who dominates the top 10. They don’t call it that but big Adwords advertising budgets insure top spots even without unique or relevant content. For a lot of keywords you have to go to page 2 to find small mom and pop sites or a review that wasn’t on Amazon.

As said, there are other search engines. I think Yahoo and Bing are gaining on Google and it’s making them paranoid. Facebook is talking about a search engine too and they have enough traffic to bury Googles loins share.I never use Google Analytics, if they want my data they will have to pay for it!

This past week I began submitting all my sites to Bing Webmasters because I want to make sure all my content gets indexed.

Also I have a large data feed store I am building and am afraid if I hit Google with it they may deindex me, so it is blocked from the SERPS but I am seriously considering blocking Google and letting Bing and Yahoo have first crack at it.

Someone, somewhere said the only thing Google is afraid of is us not needing them. I think it’s time to say f you Google if you’re so smart why don’t you try writing your own content.

Penny Go April 18, 2012 at 5:09 am

Hi Jennifer,
As always I appreciate your honesty and courage. I was making about $7.00 per month until I stumbled upon your 6 step niche site, and ordered One Week Marketing from you, and was able to build several successful content based sites. I’m a single Mom too, and I wouldn’t have been able to keep my head above water without this steady residual income. You’ve always come up with something to give away, and I appreciate it. Recently I’ve subscribed to your DAM article email series. You’ve really excelled at creating a product and working your list – kudos. You’re a leader in YOUR field, to heck with the golf dudes! Keep up the great work! And as far as breaking up with Google, I just don’t pay much attention. I get organic traffic from dozens of search engines, and it comes and goes. I just keep working my niche, and it’s working well for me. I don’t put all my eggs in one basket, and also use Amazon, Share-A-Sale, ShareResults, and eBay Affilates as well as some smaller niche affiliate groups. I used to have great success with CJ, but that’s fallen by the wayside. I’ve never hit the vein with ClickBank like you, but eventually will create a product to sell. You’ve just gotten better and better with your visuals and videos, congratulations. And regarding your breakup with Google… You go girl! Playing hard to get makes em chase after you!

PotPieGirl April 19, 2012 at 4:35 am

Wow, Penny! I’m so happy for you! I never get tired of hearing folks tell me that One Week Marketing or any of my other training has really helped! That makes it all worth while for me!

However, I don’t think Google could care less what I do or don’t do. Even if I play hard to get and use my most extreme flirtatious ways (if I remember….lol), I still don’t think they’d look twice…hahahaha!

YOU go girl!

Penny Go April 28, 2012 at 3:07 pm

Thanks ma’am! You DO matter, you have a huge following that believes in you. Now, besides the website stuff you’ve talked about, I have 2 ideas I’d like to discuss with you; do you have an eBook on Kindle? I’m ready to start a series of short stories (fiction) and sell them on Amazon. It’s totally “outside the Google Box” because you don’t use keywords, there’s a completely different way of placing your product. And second; Yahoo is tanking and needs an image re-make desperately. They need a vision, a purpose, a loyal following. Do you have any contacts at Yahoo? It would be fun to work with you on a user requirements project to build out the world of niche article marketing within a section of Yahoo, where we could register, be reviewed and registered, not be blacklisted. Like a Yahoo sponsored DMOZ within Yahoo, listing blogs made by real people. (No scrapers allowed! No crappy eHow that just steals content from 4 different sites and regurgitates it like baby bird food!) Wouldn’t that be fun? Adversity is the misunderstood key to success. The kick in the rear with the pointy toed boot!

Wendy Owen April 18, 2012 at 5:12 am

Good post Jennifer, you have inspired me to put on my thinking cap for ways to get rid of Google. There is no logic in what they are doing any more.

To the person above who said…
“I hate to point out the obvious, but this is exactly what Google wants you to do. They don’t want any of us trying to ** game the system **. Just put up a site with great content and keep adding to it and the Google Gods will smile upon you.”

You are joking… aren’t you???
Wendy

Read more: http://www.potpiegirl.com/2012/04/the-art-of-letting-go-of-google/#ixzz1sMito21o

Financial Samurai April 18, 2012 at 5:57 am

You gotta love a monopoly, who uses monopoly profits to dominate every business they enter!

Good for you for diversifying. Nice Adsense blocks in the article!

Bruce April 18, 2012 at 5:58 am

How ironic that directly under where you say, “the writing is on the wall.” there is a Google Ad.

Thank you Jennifer. This is a wonderful post. And very timely. I had several of my websites fall off the map just last night. No suspicious links. No blog networks. Just white hat stuff.

How can you correct this for Google, when all you’ve done is white hat stuff from the start?

The writing is truly on the wall.

Niche Article Marketing April 18, 2012 at 6:43 am

I think you have struck a chord and many people share your thoughts. I have found that my best traffic (converting) comes from Yahoo and Bing. I broke up with Google last year and I never looked back. Great post by the way. Keep up the good work.

it'sme April 18, 2012 at 7:05 am

Maybe it’s time to find out what all the punters really want in a fair and shared way, of equality for all, and set about making it so, as an entity of it’s own.

As any acceptence of bullying never creates a solution, only more bullying as we see in the politics of every day abuse and waste. Given enough time and space they will probably ruin, and hang themselves…Why wait?

Trust, tread and create a completly new path Jennifer your way, with whom you want, and that helps all to achive their dreams. Thats the only way forward in anything is with and about others, without them…..There is little point in anything.

You created where you are now. There is always another way, place and time.

Cameron April 18, 2012 at 9:07 am

I think that writers and marketers should go to the places their niche hangs out, because most people are passionate about something and they will go directly to the spot of interest to connect with others in the same arena. Forums are a great place to find people who are having a discussion about a particular subject, just join in the conversation and offer solutions, and it will give more traffic than Google could ever do.

P. Bruce Jones April 18, 2012 at 9:21 am

I hope I’m not a “johnny come lately” here, but my 2 cents worth,
Firstly you, Jennifer, continue to fill me with admiration for you incisive observations, well done!

Second, I use the web for professional research purposes, and what I have found with Google is that more often than not the meat of the subject will be buried 2 to 3 pages down. it is often a laborious process and not at all that certain!!! What does this tell you now?.

John April 18, 2012 at 9:34 am

Great post Jennifer, and spot on.

As Internet marketers, we try our level best to give the public and Google what they want.

I doubt if even Google know what they want anymore. Some of the top rankings in search results leave you scratching your head in amazement. You begin to wonder if some of these top rankings are paying big G.

George April 18, 2012 at 10:27 am

Hi there.
In the great scheme of things, I’m a total Newbie! Yes, I’ve sold a few things via EBay – who hasn’t? But as for actually attracting customers to my very own site, giving them just what they want and then selling them something they want or need too, well, thats still a dream!
My biggest problem (apart from not being a natural salesman) is that I seem to be constantly looking for something to sell. I’m no fool and I can write reasonably well, but I struggle with the whole ‘sales’ concept. Crazy eh?
I’m rambling – sorry. My point; Can we, as online marketers, attract enough ‘passing-trade’ without the God – Google to make a good start and have a good chance at being successful?
My best wishes to all involved in this crazy, hectic online world. :-)

Arthur April 18, 2012 at 11:44 am

Jennifer,

Will changing your focus on Google affect what you have already said in the One Week Marketing plan

Regards

Yahia April 18, 2012 at 11:50 am

Hi Jennifer,

Finally we’re talking the same language :-)

For years I’ve been considering organic traffic as a bonus and never relied on it because simply it’s not reliable. Now with all the legal troubles Google is going through (I am only aware of $1.5 billions in fines and settlements), all of the nonsense of Google’s “advice” to webmasters that only get’s your sites deindexed or penalized, and the expected collapse of Google’s business model (advertising) due to the options the users have now to block ads, I am only glad that this is happening.

Paid advertising is the way to go with business. Free is not reliable, and I don’t only mean Google here. A business that has liabilities and plans to stick to can in no way rely on organic search results. I pay for the clicks with expectations, if not met I complain, get my money back, or even sue someone. But free is free, no bindings and no obligations.

Just a side note: A little more than a year ago Google closed my adsense account for “invalid clicks”. After all the appeals and stuff all what I got was a canned response that only indicates that no one ever read my appeals. The way they treat people who do business with them not only shows how arrogant they are, but also strongly points to a collapse coming sometime in the future. Then out of frustration I asked the Lord to show them who’s the All Mighty. A few weeks later they got fined half a billion, and only a few days ago they got fined another billion. That’s way more than the $3000 they owed me when they closed my account.

So …. are you still updating OWM ;-)?

PotPieGirl April 19, 2012 at 4:36 am

Been working on it all day ;)

fay April 18, 2012 at 12:08 pm

Hi PPG

Thanks for another great post. If it wasn’t for you I wouldn’t still be doing this, I’d have given up a long time ago. I agree and had decided to de value Google after all the whole idea of having a business is that you don’t have a boss! Google is the on-line God and Gods do need followers. Remove the followers the god falls. The high street is littered with dead giants, so why not Google?

Most off line businesses has turned to social networking to promote their businesses on Twitter and Facebook etc. Of course the danger is they will gain too much power too.

I admit to being fed up with chasing Google. I just can’t keep up, I barely learn how to do a marketing technique and it’s obsolete – it’s crazy. I make some money then something changes, that income goes, I build again something happens and that income goes! Argh! Its nuts. I was just about to start back-linking now that has changed. Someone malwared all my sites and I lost them all! I am reducing my niche subjects to between 3-5 and keeping my websites to a minimum.

PotPieGirl April 19, 2012 at 4:37 am

Oh Fay – wow, you’ve been thru the mill, haven’t you? I’m so sorry to hear all that yet SO happy to hear you’re still hanging in there and moving forward!

Good for you!

TopicBay Article Marketplace April 18, 2012 at 1:40 pm

Nice work. This seems to be the common consensus these days. Although content is now to the fore of Google thoughts. Which is excellent; but this was not done to make life better for customer only to help Google ad revenue.

Daniel Robertson April 18, 2012 at 2:59 pm

The only way to divorce yourself from Google and still get loads of free traffic is to create interesting, compelling, and useful content and get it in front of your target audience.

This can be done by guest posting, forum marketing, and article syndication.

Otherwise, paid traffic is also a good way to Google proof your business.

Sunny April 18, 2012 at 6:08 pm

I agree with this statement because I have been reading about how to get traffic without google and it talks about being a expert in your niche as well as commenting on popular blogs, guest posting, interacting on forums and using platforms like podcasting, videos and building email lists.

PotPieGirl April 19, 2012 at 4:38 am

Yep, LOTS of ways to get known and established in your niche that do NOT involve Google =)

Sunny April 19, 2012 at 5:20 am

I was also thinking that Facebook will probably be another way to get targeted traffic because FB advertising is based on pretty specific demographics. Plus with the Facebook IPO going public May 17th, Mark Zuckerberg will be able to use all that money from the shareholders to turn Facebook into a (search engine) if he wants to.

PotPieGirl April 19, 2012 at 1:39 pm

Would be an interesting day if he DID add a search engine to FB, wouldn’t it?

Peter April 18, 2012 at 3:42 pm

Not long ago I set out to be a good Google boy, with hand written original content and pure white hat SEO. Much good it did me!!
Actually, it seems that most people have never learned one of the big lessons of old-fashioned offline business – never be too dependent on a single supplier or customer. Many old established offline businesses found this out the hard way in recent years when their major (only) customer suddenly decided it would be cheaper to get the items from China!
Bang goes your Business!!
I now don’t rely on any single source, though if google sends me any traffic I am duly grateful.

PotPieGirl April 19, 2012 at 4:39 am

And I am grateful as well…but they (Google) will not determine my success (or lack of).

HannahnMe April 18, 2012 at 3:47 pm

Maybe, I’m missing something here. I “understand” what everyone is saying here & I Do Agree, write for your readers BUT, what if you are NOT established yet? What if you DO NOT have a “following” / readers?

How can “THEY” Follow you OR find out how Great YOUR Stuff is…IF, “they” have Never Heard of You and You Are Not Ranked High in Google??

How do You Accomplish That?

I’d Really LOVE to know because, I just described Myself!

Yahia April 18, 2012 at 4:26 pm

You can start with social media specially facebook. A year ago a page on facebook ignited a movement that ousted the most powerful regime on earth (in my opinion). You can start there.

Also you can use advertising to get the word started. Bing is good and cheap compared to Adwords. Facebook ads are more targeted, more responsive, and very competitive in costs, but more picky and don’t approve everything.

Another way, which is free, is that you establish yourself as an expert on several article directories and start from there.You can do that by publishing 100 or more articles on each directory.

HannahnMe April 18, 2012 at 5:02 pm

Yahia …Thank You so Much! I feel better already. You have given Me many good answers to my question.

I had Not considered most of these. Cannot afford “Ads” at this time but, the others are certainly achievable!

I really Do Thank You, I was feeling pretty desperate about this.

I really think that, Too many times, the “More Advanced” affiliate marketers may have forgotten that a Whole Lot of people will read something like this and feel like “they’ are left behind Without a “Clear Path” of Action.
Many Thanks again,
Meredith

Yahia April 18, 2012 at 5:34 pm

You’re very welcome sister :-). You have no idea how good your reply made me feel. I helped someone today … yaaaaay

Thank you my Lord …

and thank you Jennifer for giving me the chance to help someone on your blog :-).

HannahnMe April 18, 2012 at 6:45 pm

Yahia….I have a Feeling that You probably Help someone Every Day! You just “helped” me with your kind response, my brother & Yes, Thank the Lord!

PotPieGirl April 19, 2012 at 4:19 am

Thank you for helping, Yahia! That’s what I LOVE to see!

Doug April 18, 2012 at 4:06 pm

Hi Jennifer

Wow! I hadn’t even considered much of this before reading your post. You are right as we do tend to just focus on Google when we are developing our websites and we should be considering other options.
I appreciate all of the comments above and will definately start thinking of alternatives to Google.
Thanks for the post as it is a real eye opener.

PotPieGirl April 19, 2012 at 4:20 am

Thanks, Doug!

Ian Smith April 18, 2012 at 4:23 pm

Hi Jennifer,

I’m a recent fan of your writing, but this whole blog has confused me. I understand all about Google’s unreasonable behaviour, but please help me with this.

I or anyone else starts a new niche website, writes relevant unique content. In order to make sales, adsense income etc. the new website has to be found. Even if the keywords are high demand and low supply you still have to be found.

It strikes me that Google is still the biggest name and game in town, so you still need to be ranked on the first page of Google to get the visitors to start selling to make a profit.

Like them or not, get into a huff with them, whatever you choose to do, your website still needs to be ranked high to get found, because you as a newcomer don’t have a list to advertise to, so getting found by players who are big enough like Google is all that matters.

I look through my keywords and I am a small player in the Travel Industry, but I have rankings above the Industry big names in Google. My SEO is lousy, my knowledge is poor, but I can see one principle here. Get yourself acknowledged as an expert in a field. Get hundreds of links from hundreds of sources, and sad to say Google will move your keyword up the rankings.
DOES ANYTHING ELSE REALLY MATTER TO GET THE TRAFFIC YOU NEED

Ian

David April 18, 2012 at 4:42 pm

“Get hundreds of links from hundreds of sources, and sad to say Google will move your keyword up the rankings” Unfortunately it doesn’t always seem to work that way anymore. Google has become very inconsistant lately. That’s great that your reaping the benifits of a high ranking today but it may be gone tomorrow. For your sake I hope not but it happens all to often. I referr back to an earlier post of mine. The search term Make Money Online has 1.75 billion other pages yet a blogspot blog with absolutely no content whatsoever has ranked in the top 10 for over a week now. I seriously doubt that blogspot site has built a ton of great links for a site that doesn’t even exist for all intents and purposes.

Google says build great sites with great content and they will love you. The problem is they aren’t practicing what they are preaching.

Ian Smith April 18, 2012 at 10:31 pm

That isn’t really my point.

How are you planning on being found by a punter who just keys in a niche word you have written a page about.
Sadly the chances are he will do it in Google.

Tell me how you plan to get found – chance perhaps!!

Ian

David April 18, 2012 at 11:26 pm

There are other ways to drive traffic that do not include Google. See the other posters who mentioned forums and guest blogging and facebook and on and on. If your relying solely on Google for traffic your in danger of losing everything at Googles whim. It has happened to many a site owner who was playing perfectly by Googles own rules only to have google just up and change the rules without any warning and POOF they were gone>

Everyone talks about diversifying backlinks, how about diversifying your traffic sources instead? NEVER put all your eggs in one basket

PotPieGirl April 19, 2012 at 4:24 am

Hey guys =)

I’m not saying NEVER consider Google as a traffic source again – that would be silly.

What I AM saying is that I want to stop relying on Google and being hyper-focused on what Google is doing. It is eating up WAY too much of my time and energy…. as well as eating away at a good bit of my ‘happy go lucky’ attitude…lol!

There are MANY ways to get found online. Lots of comments here mentioning ways. Yes, Google is ONE of them, but it shouldn’t be what you rely on to bring traffic.

Google is too finicky to depend on.

Kelly Land April 18, 2012 at 4:34 pm

Google is like a lover that I pine over daily. Makes me crazy. I lose sleep, I worry, I stress.

The age of Panda made me actually hate real Pandas!! When I’d see a cute fuzzy panda pic or a panda on TV – or even at Blizzcon 2012 (World of Warcraft is my fav game!!) – when they announced the next expansion pack as “Mists of Pandaria” with the NEW panda class – I growled.

If I’d seen a Panda in real life… I would have probably gotten as close as I could to it and screamed…. WHY?????????!!!

But after reading your post… I too need to stop being a woman scorned filled with fury, self loathing and anger. I need to let Google go. I need to stop being a FATAL ATTRACTION. LOL

I need to learn to love pandas again too.

Thanks for the great post. You gave me some of my sanity back today.

PotPieGirl April 19, 2012 at 4:26 am

LOL @ the “Fatal Attraction” reference… so I guess we’ll be boiling pandas now instead of bunnys? hahahahha!

(btw, to anyone not understanding that reference – Fatal Attraction is a movie. I am not boiling bunny OR pandas)

HannahnMe April 18, 2012 at 4:35 pm

Hi Jennifer,
Maybe, I’m missing something here. I “understand” what everyone is saying here & I Do Agree, write for your readers BUT, what if you are NOT established yet? What if you DO NOT have a “following” / readers? How can “THEY” Follow you OR, find out how Great YOUR Stuff is…IF, “they” have Never Heard of You and You Are Not Ranked High in Google?? How do You Accomplish That? I’d Really LOVE to know because, I just described Myself!”

PotPieGirl April 19, 2012 at 4:27 am

Yep, it’s hard to get started…and I’m not saying Google can’t be PART of building things up….just don’t rely on them solely.

Bill (LoneWolf) Nickerson April 18, 2012 at 4:48 pm

I think that the best way to treat Google is to just do your thing. If they like you, they like you. If not, well that’s too bad.

Trying too hard to rig the system to get traffic will eventually come back to haunt you since they will see this as “unnatural” — because it is!

But as Ian Smith pointed out, how do you get that initial traffic that Google can look at and say “people seem to like this site…”

PotPieGirl April 19, 2012 at 4:28 am

Yes, Bill! Do your own thing and don’t fret over if they (Google) like you or not. Exactly!

Google can be PART of it…and help get things going… just don’t rely on them as your only source of traffic.

Sunny April 18, 2012 at 6:18 pm

I think people need to learn how to build relationships with those people who have an influence in the industry they want to be in, for instance if you are in the travel niche then it is best not to try an “go it alone” instead see if you can collaborate or negotiate a joint venture with others in the travel blogosphere that already have a following. Offer to provide value to the niche blog owners readers by writing an ebook or “how to” tutorial that way you can get your message in front of a larger audience without relying on the search engines.

PotPieGirl April 19, 2012 at 4:29 am

Those are great ideas, Sunny! Thanks for sharing them!

Delray Sun April 18, 2012 at 6:35 pm

What an eye opener for me. I’ve decided to debrief and unbrainwash myself from what I understood was necessary. (Google) I’m not sure what to do just yet but your words make perfect sense. That’s why I keep coming back to you. A total new way of seeing things that I don’t have to wonder about. Thanks…

PotPieGirl April 19, 2012 at 4:30 am

I feel kinda the same way… debriefing and unbrain-washing myself and a little dazed and confused.

That didn’t last long for me. Once I felt the release of all that Google pressure, I put my head down and worked.

Worked hard all day today creating things…. Felt GREAT!

Leo Dimilo April 18, 2012 at 6:47 pm

I guess the moral to this is that we are chasing traffic but when we have to cater to a traffic host that is constantly changing the rules of engagement, then the ROI drops off significantly.

PotPieGirl April 19, 2012 at 4:40 am

Yes, chasing Google as opposed to BUILDING our business!

Ruby April 18, 2012 at 7:08 pm

You’re absolutely correct! I totally agree with you. Thanks for sharing, I enjoyed it.

Franklin April 18, 2012 at 7:31 pm

Great info and thanks Jennifer…When concentrating on some things like Google and Panda you may not be open to better ideas to run an online business…It can be such a great relief to let go the things that bother us and concentrate on the things we can control that will truly help build an online business

PotPieGirl April 19, 2012 at 4:40 am

The things we CAN control… very well said!

Gracie April 18, 2012 at 9:49 pm

Great post Jennifer! My main earner was penalized due to “unnatural linking” and my traffic went from triple digits a day down to single digits :-( But lately, it’s been getting some love from other SE’s and ranking for totally different keywords than Google which is interesting.

Who knows – maybe the other SE’s will become stronger as a result of all this dancing around on Google’s part.

PotPieGirl April 19, 2012 at 4:41 am

Ouch, Gracie! That sure hurts when Google puts the hammer down like that!

Glad things are picking up for you!

Eddy Salomon April 19, 2012 at 12:02 am

Amen Jen!
I’ve been feeling the same way the last couple of years. And it was cemented in December when I went through a little traffic scare with them. It was a nice wake up call that I need to explore other options.

So when are we getting an article on who you’ll be getting into a relationship with next? lol I would love to hear your thoughts on using other sources for traffic.

PotPieGirl April 19, 2012 at 4:44 am

Thankfully, I didn’t get a ‘wake up call’ like that. I just realized how much of my time and energy was spent watching Google…..and it was a LOT of time. Hopefully, this was more like a ‘proactive wakeup call’ for me.

So, Eddy, you want the dirt on who I’ll be in my NEXT relationship with?? hahhaha! I thought nice girls never told?

Knowing me, I’ll spill it eventually!

Hope to see ya in Vegas!!

Mike April 19, 2012 at 3:14 am

Jennifer,
I am crying and laughing at the same time. Having been in business myself for some thirty years I fell victim to the housing and real estate crisis.I would get up in the morning anticipating the smell of dirt and the house that would follow. I found I had placed all my eggs in one basket and –everyone knows the rest of the story. I had built custom homes for a living and LOVED LOVED LOVED what I did.Fast forward a couple of years and I found myself in the same position with the internet-not really getting anywhere and thinking even if I did what would happen tomorrow? Even though I was so excited I left the net behind. Its always good to hear from you.

Mike

PotPieGirl April 19, 2012 at 4:47 am

So sorry to hear all that, Mike…but things have GOT to get better (with the housing market)…hopefully you’ll be back smelling dirt very soon.

Always great to hear from YOU too!

Alex April 19, 2012 at 7:25 am

Awesome post! The times are a changing and I believe this is just the tip of the iceberg. The whole Internet Marketing community is in an uproar about all the recent algo changes, unnatural link penalties, and negative SEO. I think Google has just gone too far this time. I’m excited to see how things play out over the next few months!

The Great Gordino April 19, 2012 at 5:59 pm

Hi Jennifer,
You are right that people got too obsessed with Google – many still are!
Yes, it can provide great traffic, but all the time, and/or expense involved hardly makes it the so called ‘free’ traffic everyone raves about.

In fact, you can get all the traffic you ever need without a single visitor from Google, just by putting yourself in front of the target market in other places.

That may be forums, or newsletters or social media, but in fact niche markets do not not congregate on via google, so to focus exclusively on google bypasses such a chunk of potential.

Great post!
Gordon

Will @ OmarandWill.com April 19, 2012 at 7:12 pm

Thanks so much for such a great post! I took my time to read it and have the same feeling towards Google. For some reason it has always hit me that when a company gets bigger than life they tend to let it get to their heads.

I feel this is what is happening with Google. For some reason they feel that webmasters are the problem when in reality Google’s overly aggressiveness towards us and their lack of effort in the customer service department is the real problem.

I believe if there is one thing that may cause Google to loose their power is the fact that they choose to not provide any type of helpful customer service.

(especially in the adsense department where people are getting banned left and right.)

Also agree 100% relying one one thing as your main source of income is not only a bad move but a very risky one at that. As I mentioned many people have lost their adsense account of many years just because “Google decides” to do so. This is not a real business because us the supposedly “business owners” have no real control.

This was a very tough lesson to learn but My partner and I did learn it indeed. Anyways thanks again for the excellent post! I enjoyed it.

Sharon Koenig April 20, 2012 at 12:22 am

Wow, that was a mouth full. Thoughts that I have been thinking for a while now. I have been using other forms of traffic generation since day 1 of my blog and will continue to.

Shawn April 20, 2012 at 11:07 pm

Thanks Jennifer,

I agree we have to start looking for other ways to reach our target audience. They are out there and finding new traffic sources are the key to staying in business.

I would love to hear your thoughts on alternative traffic sources.

Aditya Raj Bhatt April 22, 2012 at 4:28 am

Look at this post. Instead of abandoning Google, why don’t you work alongside it.

https://plus.google.com/112127291830325669645/posts/METB8iqtubX

Alex Havian April 22, 2012 at 10:27 am

Hello Jenifer” will Google do anything to prevent this issue here , this is getting out of control http://fiverr.com/negativeseoguy/do-negative-seo-for-you

davidc April 25, 2012 at 11:10 am

No… they won’t, because negative seo has a little impact on big site (amazon, ebay etc) and they don’t really care about small / medium sites. Doing so, they force you to buy PPC. It’s a win win situation for google.

Rick April 22, 2012 at 3:51 pm

I agree with you 100%. They google bully cloaks it’s business model in socalled SERPS improvements. The fact is that the more unstable they make their search results and your seo work. The more businesses will use and rely on Adsense to be at the top of the page. You’ll see the Adsense bar of every page get longer as its grown from one to two ads to 4 and a side bar now. Not to mention the rediculous price per click that so many phrases carry now. Let the therapy begin.

Earl April 25, 2012 at 4:13 am

I see you haven’t let go of your google adsense though, lol.

Google sucks.

davidc April 25, 2012 at 11:07 am

“From here on out, any traffic from Google should be seen as a BONUS, not as a business plan.” –
Best advice ever. I think users and webmasters should ignore Google. They became a greedy company and they don’t care about users (their “don’t be evil” policy is pure crap). I’ll stop using any google products from now on. F@$@! you very much google. (sorry for very much).

Walt Goshert (@MarketingCaddy) May 31, 2012 at 12:15 am

The Art of Letting Go (of Google) | http://t.co/oC7WxeqI http://t.co/rFHIa9fF via @potpiegirl

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