Search engine ethics

The discussion about search engine optimization will always create a fuss. The problem can be discussed from many points of view, each with its own good and bad arguments. Most webmasters who use search engine optimization understand the code of ethics, but they don’t always take it into account. Experts in search engine optimization bend the rules in favor of the surfers, the search engines or the clients. Some of them use the “whatever it takes” excuse to justify their actions while others “play fair”.

Search Engine Optimization Code of Ethics

Information seekers on the Internet want relevant, high quality written pages that are easy to use by anyone. However, their wishes usually come into conflict with the efforts of those who practice search engine optimization. To obtain a high page rank for a personal site or for a client’s is very difficult without some incompatibility between the site owner’s demands and the users’ needs. Because of these problems, all search engine optimization practitioners should respect and use the unwritten search engine optimization code of ethics:

-Search engine optimization will bring no harm to the client: This rule is meant to protect the Internet surfer from having to deal with badly optimized pages that affect the content of the site in such a manner that they are not useful anymore (but they do have high rankings). This rule also protects the owners of sites that require the services of search engine optimization experts. The optimization is not supposed to have as a result the removal of the client’s page from the index and directories of the search engine.
-The optimization will not violate any specified rule of search engines and directories: The rule states that the optimization experts are forced to comply with the guidelines of the search engine and to promptly take action if any changes appear. The sites have to be optimized without breaking any rules or offending anyone.
-No search engine optimization practitioner will harm, mislead or offend a customer: All individuals that visit a site will not be mislead, harmed or offended by any information contained and displayed by the client’s search engine optimized site.
– No search engine optimization practitioner will intentionally violate any laws: This refers to the intentional and repeated violation of laws related to spamming.
-Search engine optimization practitioners are not allowed to represent the clients’ site falsely: This states that the search engine optimization is not allowed to present false informational content to the user.
-No search engine optimization practitioners are allowed to present other people’s work as their own: Not taking this rule into consideration involves breaking the laws of copyright.
-Search engine optimization practitioners will not give false information about their area of expertise, abilities, education, training certifications and all other aspects that state they are experts in this field of work.
-Search engine optimization practitioners will not participate in a conflict of interests without first informing the involved parties
-Search engine optimization practitioners will not set unrealistic client expectations: The search engine optimization practitioner shouldn’t accept a large number of clients that are competing for the same keywords and shouldn’t deceive them regarding the effects their work will have over the ranking or positioning in a search engine.
-No search engine optimization practitioners should delude their clients about internal and external dispute resolution procedures
-All search engine optimization practitioners will keep their clients information confidential: The person who optimizes a site for a search engine is sworn to protect the client’s information and not disclose it to other sites. This includes logos testimonials, client lists, press releases and other important information. The expert is not supposed to use any of this info without first discussing it with the client
-All search engine optimization practitioners will give their best to increase or retain the client’s rankings: A site’s optimization requires people to increase or retain a client’s ranking with the help of ethical procedures. The expert is obliged to use only appropriate manners of maintenance or rank improvement, keeping up to date to the always changing technologies, competition and client web site needs.

This ethical code is adopted by many experts to guide their work by. It also provides a controlled environment in which competition is healthy and the technologies and procedures of search engine optimization are constantly evolving.

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