James Joyce’s SEO and Google Hummingbird

Is SEO dead? Man, I hope so.

Do I, though?

Sites should write for the people and not the algorithm. We can all see it, can’t we? When a site is cooked in a way that it’s seasoned with keywords and SEO spice that will make Google wanna eat it up. Or at least entice Google to put it on the menu. On the SERP of the menu!

Maybe, I follow too many creative writer’s blogs.
Or too many amateur book bloggers. But, wow, these people write from the soul. Sure, they are not discoverable through organic search. But you may see a great comment from them on a more popular site. Or, see them being RTed on Twitter because they are witty. It’s all about authentic engagement and the power of social sharing.

Or is it?

Any time I examine my stats I’m surprised by the results. My clicks are from organic searches, Pinterest, or Google +. And all of these tools are arrow sharp with SEO as the red dot.

What happens when you combine passion with analytics?
The definition of an amateur is a person who does something not for profit but for pure passion. But what happens when you blend in a bit of analytics? Magic.

Joyce and Hummingbird
Joyce and Hummingbird

Sure, we can all see when a site is baked with structured content, wrapped in alt perfect images, SEO sprinkled keywords, heavy hitting titles, and a bit of heart.

And that ain’t such a bad thing.

The Three Act Structure
Book writers use their own sort of SEO too. It’s called the three act structure. Act One– set up and inciting incident. Act Two – rising action and development of character’s arc. Act Three – climax.

Heck, there are Venn diagrams and plot graphs explaining this!

I like that Google has the searcher in mind.
I love that Google wants content to be engaging, shareable, readable and that their latest algorithm, Hummingbird, scans for theme and not keywords.

But all of this is still a bit depressing. It’s not about writing from the heart. But when was it ever about that? Well for Joyce is was always about that.

For books, websites, Google, and searchers it’s about writing content that’s geared for the head, heart, soul, and algorithm.

Happy Bloomsday! If James Joyce was alive, he’d probably be a blogger with a cult following and low traffic. And he probably wouldn’t have had it any other way.


Tell me – NoW:

How do you feel when reading blogs aimed at SEO?

What are you doing for Blooms day?

Which James Joyce books have you read?

Are you a blogger and if so do you aim at SEO or searchers of both?

Who’s gonna pop the kettle on?


Find me here because it’s better than the white bunny  Twitter     Google +     Facebook      Linkedin

9 Comments Add yours

  1. Michelle Moloney King says:

    Sounds good, Harry. I’ve emailed you there!


  2. dancey89 says:

    Jesus, you’re an old school blogger then, that’s incredible (no school like the old school).

    To be honest I like your blog as well/ i’m a little jealous of how good the content is. Maybe in the future we could do some sort of collaboration or I would be happy for you to link back to your site from mine through a digital marketing related post. I’m happy to write a post / or two for you as well (just to clarify I’m not just begging you to write for my blog)

    Do you do much guest posting? ps harry_dance@hotmail.co.uk emails will prob make this communication malarkey easier


  3. Michelle Moloney King says:

    I got my first ever computer in 2009, set up the blog in May 2011 and have been tipping away at it since.

    I don’t edit my blog posts or research. I just day dream. And if something hits me and I’m near a pc then I’ll write it down. If I’m not near a pc then I’ll simmer it down to one topic sentence and will try to get back to it later.

    I really like your blog. I mean, the psychology and marketing mix is awesome!

    Liked by 1 person

  4. dancey89 says:

    Oh hell no. If it did we would get bored. Well that’s what i tell myself.

    I need to post more and need to build a website (because mine looks grim!) I need to sit down and just do more, ironically I’m sitting down now and still not doing anything.

    How have you done this for so long? I enjoy it but I can’t produce long posts more than once a week. I just don’t have the time to research lol

    Liked by 1 person

  5. Michelle Moloney King says:


    I did play around with it and I think I managed to set one up.

    Must say, Blogger is much more user friendly. Worpdress is grown-up and all that jazz but the simplicity of Blogger was a thing of beauty. Still, this is where it’s at.

    I just need to learn more.

    Tell me this; does the learning ever stop?!


  6. dancey89 says:

    I will definitely have a look at his blog. As well, noted dinosaurs and SEO sounds like a dream mix. Like Jurassic park for nerds, I’m in! Well I will makes sure I keep in touch, as I have really enjoyed reading some of your blogs.

    I did think though with this post http://moloneyking.com/2014/06/page/2/ , not sure if you have the chance now, but if you used a 301 redirect from the blogger page to the word press site. If you can do it you would keep all your authority from the old blog


  7. Michelle Moloney King says:

    Hi Harry,

    Thanks for commenting.

    I agree with you; It isn’t dead but I sometimes wonder should it be. It does work. I mean, how did you find this blog? But it’s a sad state of affairs that it works so well. No one seems to share enough. And good content is left to be discovered or left as a cult classic.

    How many marketing blogs, marketing emails, and free ebooks as incentives to subscribe have you read and wished you hadn’t? Some of them are just generic fluff.

    Honestly, I am seeing a trend towards great formatting, fantastic pictures, sure SEO but lots of heart.

    Have you read anything by Avinash Kaushik http://www.kaushik.net/avinash/ he has brains, SEO and humour with heart.

    P.S. a blog post incorporating SEO and dinosaurs sounds like my cuppa tea.

    Thanks again.


  8. dancey89 says:

    Great post, I won’t lie, I am a digital marketeer and infortunately SEO isn’t dead.. Type into Google “is SEO dead” and you will see http://seoisdead.net/ . Which just helps highlight it isn’t

    Saying this, I wish it was some time, I have always been in awe of people writing, I was one of those classic lads who tried to write a book as a kid….. OK it was on dinosaurs, however I have always been jealous of real writers! Thank you again though! Harry


Care to comment?

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s