So what has changed with SEO? There have been Google updates that change the way the search engine looks at your website.
These same updates have rendered some “black hat” and “gray hat” SEO techniques you may have used in the past obsolete. Is there some new technique that has changed the game entirely?
Not really. You still need SEO services for the same reasons you always have: to determine where your customers are entering the sales funnel and how to move them through that funnel. This is because refining the buying cycle is the key to increasing conversions — and why the ROI on SEO services is so high.
New technology is changing SEO for the better though, because the same techniques can be refined in some very important ways.
Here are a few:
When the idea of SEO began about two decades ago, there was little to help site owners determine how their site was doing except for rankings for certain keywords. Google was a much greater mystery then.
Thanks to several companies like Moz and SEMRush who have reverse engineered much of what Google is doing, and tools like the Google Search Console (once called Webmaster Tools), we have a lot more insight. This software is constantly developing in several ways:
The good news is that these software tools will continue to develop. Google wants to present searchers with the best answers and they also want to make money from paid advertising. They will continue to do all they can to help you target the right customers as long as you are producing great content.
Yes, Google analytics is more powerful than ever before, but that is in part due to big data and all the information customers share online. You can learn a lot from search history and customer behavior, and thanks to all that data targeting is much more precise.
How do you tap into all of this data? Well, beyond Google analytics and your website, there are also social listening tools, proprietary apps, enterprise data you have gathered from your customers, and industry data. This allows you to create better personas for each of your products and services.
This also leads to web personalization, a trend increasing in both popularity and importance. It allows you to make your website work the best it can for each user, shortening their buyer journey, especially if they are a returning customer. Amazon is especially good at this, but even small businesses can use many of the same techniques thanks to options in cloud computing.
While these tools are not specific to SEO, their impact on marketing has a direct impact on your SEO strategy as well.
Scheduling email blasts, social media sharing, and other marketing tasks can eat up a bunch of your time. Using marketing automation tools, you can schedule post for the optimal posting time, send targeted emails to specific lists regarding things they are interested in, and even send them coupons and offers based on what content they have interacted with on your website.
This automation also allows you to do research supporting SEO, including A.B testing of titles and posts, landing pages, and keywords to see which content is performing better with which audience.
Like other new technology, this is not really changing SEO at its core, for good SEO strategy will always be what it is, but they are changing how SEO is executed.
Essentially the newest technology changing SEO is helping you perform SEO tasks in an easier way. However, you still have to create great content. An understanding of indexing, keywords and technical SEO has not been replaced by something else. Instead, new tools have made determining the best keywords and strategies easier.
Smarter analytics mean we have more information to work with, so targeting can be more specific. Marketing automation means testing and performing other marketing tasks takes less of our time, and targeting is not only more specific, but timed correctly too. We know Google better and our customers better.
These advances are letting even small businesses tap into the power of SEO, improving growth rates, profit margins, and a better ROI from their websites and blogs.
Devin prides himself on being a jack of all trades; his career trajectory is more a zigzag than an obvious trend, just the way he likes it. He pops up across the Pacific Northwest, though never in one place for long. You can follow him more reliably on Twitter.