Top 10 lists will always gather attention. Before David Letterman, Malcom Forbes, and the early European media publishers, lists thrived.
It is very easy to scan lists, which makes them ideal for the web. Also, people love to see things ranked and ordered. Structured information is best suited for our brains.
Below is an excellent example of a top-x list: timely, controversial, ubiquitous (if you are reading this you are online)
Here are Media Metrix’s top 15 Web properties from April 1999, before the dot com crash. Monthly unique visitors rounded to the nearest million.
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Everyone frets and worries about their website and this leads to over optimizing and spending money on useless SEO techniques. Safe yourself some money (and gray hairs!) and use this free search engine optimization advice to relax about the current state of your SERP’s.
These are 10 things you worry about with your SEO campaign but shouldn’t:
- Obsessing about number one rankings – being #1 for one keyword is nowhere near as good as being #5 for 25 keyword phrases.
- Focusing on PageRank – Google’s little green bar means nothing to your website. It does not control your website any more than little green men live on Mars.
- Worrying about who is linking to you – so your enemy submitted you to 500 automated top 100 websites, spam directories, and link farms? There is no problem as long as you do not link to any of these unsavory web properties.
- Worrying about what other people tell you – usually SEO salesman or well intentioned but misguided friends
- Outranking Wikipedia – For most generic keyword searches Wikipedia will be in the top 5, and they may even push your website to the bottom of the search results page. There is nothing you can do about this, and the almighty Wiki is likely to remain an authority site indefinitely. Be creative, join them by submitting images to the Wiki commons and link them to your site.
- Trying to rank in Microsoft/Yahoo/Ask – they don’t matter, really. Google is the traffic king.
- Banging your head over DMOZ listings – DMOZ is a powerful free directory – or not. DMOZ editors ignoring your passionate pleas? Join the club. The web is simply too big for the volunteer editors to handle so the open directory is becoming less relevant, and this trend will continue into the future. A better idea is to be listed in smaller topical directories that are directly related to your website.
- Meta Tags – using a meta description will allow you to control your website snippit, but meta keywords are as useless as shoes on a fish.
- Stressing over Alexa or Compete.com rankings – Seriously would you trust a robot to run your business or make decisions for you? These automated systems make sweeping generalizations about web traffic and are only accurate for spproximately the top 5000 web properties.
- Changing rankings & temporary position loss – change happens, and this can be a good thing. Google is constantly refining the way they count and score backlinks and evaluate duplicate content, so as long as your links come from trusted quality sources and you only use original copy any rankings drop should only be temporal
More details courtesy of SEL.