As a world class SEO, could you be replaced by an ape?
Chimpanzees and humans share anywhere from 98 to 99 percent of their DNA. And yes, a chimp is an ape, not a monkey. Apes don’t have tails, monkeys do. Knowing this, I’ll expect you to properly lecture young children at the zoo when they point at the chimps and yell “monkey!”
How are we similar? Well, for one thing, we both throw a lot of excrement around. Sure, humans may do it verbally but it’s not too different. Obviously we look similar, with some of us looking even more similar than others. Our brains and central nervous systems are quite alike as well. So with this in mind, could an ape do SEO? Hell yes. There’s no one better to back this up than Jane Goodall either…and please, no nasty comments about Jane or I’ll seriously come find you and string your arse up.
Chimps have been shown to have learned close to 300 or more signs in sign language. That’s about 295 more than I know. One potential drawback here is that “…chimpanzees have not developed sophisticated spoken language.” Well, a lot of SEOs haven’t either. So sure, chimps may not be able to PRONOUNCE certain words but maybe you’ll luck up and get some deaf clients.
If you’ve ever had a stiff interaction (ahem) with a client who was immune to your considerable charm and didn’t laugh when he said “My boss doesn’t see eye to eye with me on this” and you said “why, is he a midget?”, you should know that you could have simply sent your chimp in for the meeting. He’d have done a better job and would have been far more entertaining, most likely. Especially if he had on a cute little oxford shirt, khaki pants, and desert boots.
Basic HTML is just that, basic. It’s actually basic as hell. 10 year olds can code HTML. Now, with the popularity of code-generating software and content management systems, you can easily get away with not knowing it anyway. This leaves the door open for your friendly neighborhood chimp to come in and start clicking keys. Sooner or later, he’ll get a WordPress blog started.
Chimps are “…capable of reasoned thought, abstraction, generalization, symbolic representation and a concept of self.” Again, this is more than I can say for a few SEOs. Most of us DO have a concept of self but it tends to be exaggerated in some cases. You won’t find that in chimps though. They’re very modest creatures, except when they’re in the mood for sexy time. While a chimp may not actually be able to interpret an Analytics report, he can at least hit the print button and hold up a printout, gesturing at it the same way you would. No client expects you to actually know anything about the damn numbers!!!
Following Google’s Guidelines
Well, I am at a loss here. They’re too feckin’ complicated for me to understand usually, so I wouldn’t expect a chimp to be able to do this properly. However, knowing there are chimps out there doing SEO might make Google clarify their guidelines in the interest of making the web a better place.
Running PPC Campaigns
Chimps might have some trouble here. They seem to be comedians who’d jack up the cost per click prices just to get a good laugh. However, is that not something you’ve done at some point? Or is it just me? A chimp could set up some ads and get them going and just let them roll…needing only minimal assistance at best. Or, you could simply have another human underling set up the ads and let the chimp login and check on them every day. He need not actually do any examination of the campaigns, of course. The key here is that he LOOKS like he’s doing it.
Judging by the fact that chimps tend to get the most attention at the zoo, it’s obvious to me that they’d also get the most links. Everyone likes a chimp. If said chimp had to pursue inbound links, it would be quite simple to set up an email system where the chimp hit a button and bam, email requests are sent out and the chimp can take a load off, pop open a can of Budweiser (bottle openers might be dangerous with chimps and you don’t want to get hit by a glass bottle) and watch the links come pouring in, laughing all the way to his chimp bank.
This is probably the area in which chimps would seriously excel. Chimps are social creatures, and they probably have better social skills than many of us. If a chimp requested to add me as a friend on Facebook, I’d be insane not to do it! How cool would that be anyway, to have a chimp for a Facebook friend? Chimps can use cameras, and can probably use Flickr software too. Chimps can click on the “Sphinn this” link, or Stumbleupon a website. Chimps could get Linked In, too, and show off their resumes.
I’d definitely have a drink with a chimp at a bar after a conference. Wouldn’t you? Naturally I’d make him pay though…I’ve had drinks with some really hairy men, many of whom were also short, so I have experience with this type of thing already. Chimps are chick magnets too, especially when they have gleaming gold pendants nestled in those hairy chimp chests. Sociable chimps also “travel around in small groups of up to six, the membership of which is always changing as individuals wander off on their own for period of time, or join other groups.” This is a lot like the SEOMoz crew or the Google clan if you think about it. Chimps are natural networkers. They can possibly fake being interested in what other people are saying better than I can, too.
So perk up. At least you aren’t in danger of being replaced by a bag of sand. Not yet, anyway.