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The ever-changing world of search engine optimisation (SEO) has a number of debates that keep taking place across blogs, in articles and at trade shows.

However, many of them become out of date as the sector evolves.

I have listed the three most obvious examples below, but there are many, many more...

1)      SEO vs. PPC
This has been possibly the most argued subject in the world of optimisation and search marketing.

Endless pages of blogs have been devoted to the same arguments, thousands of forum posts have demanded to know which option they could pick and a number of potential clients have asked which option is best.
Fortunately, most industry workers have now realised that both have their pros and cons but a combination of both is best for long-term visibility.

2)      Black Hat vs. White Hat
Every time black hat is mentioned and criticised by the blogosphere, some people will leap to the defence of unethical SEO. To me, it always seems a little presumptive to believe you can out-think the hundreds of PhDs employed by the leading search engines.
Fortunately, a number of high profile cases hit the media recently as a number of big names dropped out the search results for unethical optimisation tactics. This means fewer and fewer clients expect instant results and more are keen to hear about long-term optimisation benefits.
3)      SEO Has No Future VS Oh Yes it Does
This debate rears its head again and again but it is completely redundant. The people who insist optimisation has no future always seem to be to be the people who define SEO as the unfair manipulation of search engines.

These people do not fully understand the industry and the huge amount of work that goes into decent white hat optimisation.

Fortunately, this debate will die off as the world in general gains a greater understanding of exactly what search optimisation means. It is not manipulation; it is honing, toning and refining a website. Black hat may have no future but decent SEO is a massively important aspect of online marketing.

I think it is interesting that you still see many of these debates taking place within the realm of article marketing. The web is filled with rehashes of the old debates, which can be very confusing for newcomers to SEO researching the possibilities for their own firms.
Does anyone have any more examples?

Kevin Gibbons is Director of Search at SEOptimise .

Kevin Gibbons

Published 30 September, 2008 by Kevin Gibbons

Kevin Gibbons is UK Managing Director at digital marketing agency BlueGlass. He is also known as an SEO speaker and can be found on Twitter and Google+.

102 more posts from this author

Comments (3)

Richard Hartigan

Richard Hartigan, Industry Manager at Google

Three of the bigger ones I experience regularly:

- Bidding on your brand term vs. not bidding on your brand term.
- Is broad match the best method to maximise return on investment.
- Outsource or inhouse, which is most effective.

about 8 years ago


Mark Edmondson

The frothing at the mouth whenever there is a PR update gets boring fast as well :)

about 8 years ago


Peter Young

Regarding your third point - probably worth highlighting some trend analysis I did for a recent blog post which highlighted an increase in SEO awareness (from a search volume perspective - in comparison to PPC)


Back on topic

Online PR SEM or Traditional PR domain?

about 8 years ago

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