The word is on the street: Google’s cool with your site being ‘search engine optimized’–but it’s not really going to care too much soon… there are just better ways to figure out if your site matters.
Here’s a bit from Matt Cutts at this year’s SXSW on what Google is going to be up to soon:
And the idea is basically to try and level the playing ground a little bit. So all those people who have sort of been doing, for lack of a better word, “over optimization” or “overly” doing their SEO, compared to the people who are just making great content and trying to make a fantastic site, we want to sort of make that playing field a little bit more level.
This really makes a lot of sense–the site owner shouldn’t really be in control of his/her site’s ranking. It’s really the sum of the “market signals” that count.
So if you’re counting keywords, or going nuts exchanging links, you’re smoke. Get with the program: create great content and engage your community because Google’s brainiacs are seemingly omnipotent!
On a technical note, creating human-readable URLs and descriptive title and H1 tags still make sense because it’s about improving the human experience–not the bot experience.