What is the role of SEO in online reputation management?

Search Engine Reputation Management (or SERM) tactics are often employed by companies and increasingly by individuals who seek to proactively shield their brands or reputations from damaging content brought to light through search engine queries. Some use these same tactics reactively, in attempts to minimize the damage inflicted by inflammatory websites (and weblogs) launched by consumers and, as some belief, competitors.

Given the increasing popularity and development of search engines, these tactics have become more important than ever. Consumer-generated media (like blogs) has amplified the public’s voice, making points of view – good or bad – easily expressed. This is further explained in this front-page article in the Washington Post.

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Search Engine Reputation Management strategies include Search engine optimization (SEO) and Online Content Management. Because search engines are dynamic and in constant states of change and revision, it is essential that results are constantly monitored.

This is one of the big differences between SEO and online reputation management. SEO involves making technological and content changes to a website in order to make it more friendly for search engines. Online reputation management is about controlling what information users will see when they search for information about a company or person

Semantic Web

The Semantic Web is a collaborative movement led by the World Wide Web Consortium (W3C) [1] that promotes common formats for data on the World Wide Web. By encouraging the inclusion of semantic content in web pages, the Semantic Web aims at converting the current web of unstructured documents into a web of data. It builds on the W3C’s Resource Description Framework (RDF)


The main purpose of the Semantic Web is driving the evolution of the current Web by enabling users to find, share, and combine information more easily. Humans are capable of using the Web to carry out tasks such as finding the Irish word for folder, reserving a library book, and searching for the lowest price for a DVD.

However, machines cannot accomplish all of these tasks without human direction, because web pages are designed to be read by people, not machines. The semantic web is a vision of information that can be readily interpreted by machines, so machines can perform more of the tedious work involved in finding, combining, and acting upon information on the web.

Limitations of HTML

Many files on a typical computer can be loosely divided into human-readable documents and machine-readable data. Documents like mail messages, reports, and brochures are read by humans. Data, like calendars, address books, playlists, and spreadsheets are presented using an application program that lets them be viewed, searched, and combined in different ways.

Currently, the World Wide Web is based mainly on documents written in Hypertext Markup Language (HTML), a markup convention that is used for coding a body of text interspersed with multimedia objects such as images and interactive forms. Metadata tags provide a method by which computers can categorize the content of web pages, for example

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