When it comes to search engine optimization, business web site owners faced many challenges in 2015. The Penguin and Panda updates, combined with last summer’s “Mobile-Geddon”, pushed site owners and SEO providers to develop new solutions. Since the dust has settled on these latest updates, site owners may believe that the worst is over and that they can rest easy with the knowledge of a job completed.
Nothing could be further from the truth. In 2015, Google instituted over 600 changes to its search algorithm. Industry observers expect that the search engine giant will enact at least as many changes in 2016, including a major algorithm update scheduled for late spring.
The traditional goal of organic SEO has been to have the owner’s site achieve a high ranking on the search engine results page (SERP). An appearance among the top five links displayed on the SERPs was considered the most valued online real estate available. Today, much of that valued space has been taken up by paid ads, making that “above-the-fold” space more expensive.
However, some changes on how Google manages that space are reportedly on the way. For some search engine queries, Google displays an “Answer Box”, which displays the requested information in the SERP along with a link to the page providing the answer. According to the search engine experts at Moz, the goal of SEO in 2016 is no longer reaching the top of the listings, but “being the answer” that users are seeking.
While most SEO agencies concentrate on attaining higher SERP ranking for their clients, site owners should be aware that Google’s reach extends far beyond its traditional search engine. Google+ is a growing social network. Google Local manages millions of searches a day for customers who are looking for businesses in their area. YouTube is still, far and away, the leading online video sharing service. Site owners should consider plans to exploit each one of these avenues to achieve maximum SEO results.
In May 2012, Google developed its “Knowledge Graph” system. The system allows Google to create links among various pieces of similar content. Just as Facebook uses its algorithm to deliver content that matches the account holder’s interests, Google’s Knowledge Graph delivers content that matches the user’s search queries. Instead of just displaying a list of relevant links, Google can now directly show users the answers they seek.
The key aspect of getting included in Google’s Knowledge Graph is the same as it has been for high rankings in SERPs: fresh, high-quality content. Top-notch content gets included in the Knowledge Graph, which then gets incorporated into potential Answer Box content for user queries. The best content can earn a site a place on that high-value, Manhattan-level real estate at the top of the SERPs.
The experienced professionals at ClickMetrics are ready to help with your web site project. Whether you need a cosmetic redesign, a secure e-commerce system, or a powerful marketing campaign, the team at ClickMetrics has the experience and dedication to take your business web site to the next level. Call or email us today to find out how we can help!