Tech society is coming around to the understanding that the shiny gadget is pretty useless without quality content, an old-school value. Google’s tweaked algorithm, now biased to favor content quality and reduce Web spam gaming, makes this especially critical. Yes boys and girls, there’s no shortcut. If you want a good Web site, you have to put good content into it, content that is accessible, findable, and useful. Rather than spend a lot of time fulminating on this myself, let me refer you to an excellent article in Smashing Magazine that summarizes the issue, with bells and whistles and great pointers to more detailed references and guides. If you are involved in a Web site, unless you are all over this already, you need to read this and the linked pages: http://www.smashingmagazine.com/2011/04/12/make-your-content-make-a-difference/
I’d also like to take a moment to point to a resonant value here, the importance of the human factor in technology. As I was telling a technology entrepreneur I was talking to today, technology is like a taxi cab. You need a smart driver and a passenger for the cab to have a true purpose. Otherwise, it’s a shiny gadget that goes nowhere fast, or a gas-waster driving around looking for something useful to do.
There are no shortcuts. You pay what you get for.