How Has SEO Changed Over The Years?
For over 18 years, Search Engine Optimization (SEO) has been used as a marketing tool in one way or another. While examples of SEO back in 1995 may not have been as intricate or cleverly planned as they are now, it is still fairly impressive to note that no business has been quite the same since then. For nearly two decades, this form of keyword optimization has been slowly but surely pushing in-print advertising to the sidelines. Perhaps in another two decades; simple printed advertisements will be nothing but a glamorous window into the past.
What Is The Point Of Changing?
One of the main reasons that SEO services have changed so much is because search engines are ever-changing. Search engines are constantly evolving and becoming more efficient. In the late nineties, all search results were displayed in alphabetical order. Basically, online searching was more a tool for clients than it was for competing businesses. Clients would type their keywords into the search bar and all of the linked results would pop up from A to Z. Filtering through the results inevitably took hours and more than a few businesses were so far down the list that they really did not have much of a chance at being found.
SEO results are a fair bit different nowadays. Instead of filtering result alphabetically, newer search engines filter them by keyword relevance. If, for example, you type in a product and a location the results will be as closely matched to your keyword phrase as possible. So, if you type in “pizza Boston”, the top most results are likely to show you the websites of Boston pizzerias with web content that is as close a match as possible to your search.
Today’s SEO Must Adapt To Search Engine Changes
Because SEO results are filtered by keyword relevance, many business owners would attempt to “stuff” the written content of their homepages with keywords that might gain them more search results. This method no longer cuts the mustard, simply because search engines have developed a little further than that. Originality is now of the utmost importance when building a website. Generic content is nowhere near acceptable.
Search engines are constantly evolving in such a way that they are able to filter results according to a variety of factors. Keywords were the first step. Meta tag filters soon followed. Now, things have gotten a bit more involved and a lot more impressive. Blog content, social networking, external links, site traffic and content quality are now monitored and search results filtered accordingly. Keyword used to be the simplest way to gain more traffic to a webpage. Now intelligent content and linking is an absolute prerequisite.
Changes In Google
Penguin and Panda are two search engine filters powered by Google, each one of which has gone through significant changes over the years. Penguin was designed to filter out any sites thought to be spam. With each new update, any sites that were marked as “bad news” through Penguin, will be re-added to the search results provided that any bad links or spam-related content has been removed. Panda is designed to stop websites with poorly written content from sneaking into the top results on a search page.
Where SEO was once a fairly simple process allowing people to blindly stuff relevant keywords wherever they saw fit, it has now become a task that requires no small amount of planning and creativity. SEO content and search engines once operated independently from one another. Now, success depends on these two web entities functioning as a virtual team.
So Much Competition!
SEO services are a highly competitive aspect of the internet marketing sphere. So many businesses are moving their stores online on a daily business, and each one of them will inevitably be competing for those juice top spots on Google or similar search engines. “SEO services New York” alone is a keyword that is hit thousands of times a day while people scrabble for a spot in the higher ranking webpage results.
Quite obviously, SEO is an exciting field in the internet marketing world. Ongoing competition, frequent updates, technological improvements and an ever-growing market make SEO trends worth keeping an eye on. If so much has changed in under two decades, there is no doubt that the next twenty years will offer a lot more. One thing is fairly certain: in order to stay afloat in this fragile economy, all businesses will need to switch to online marketing sooner rather than later. Knowing the ins and outs of SEO services can definitely offer most businesses the life line they need.