It’s no secret, people are always talking about the future of seo. Where is it now? Where is it going? Does seo still exist? All you have to do is read any internet marketing forum having anything to do with seo and you will see people debating over it.
Anyone and I mean anyone who is trying to make a living online can easily get caught up in all of this. It can be a time suck taking away from valuable time you could be working or growing your business.
After all, that’s one of the biggest problems why people never get anywhere with seo or even any internet marketing. They are always looking for the next bright shiny object or big idea. When in all reality it is something like seo they should learn, work at it and then achieve success.
So let’s dive right in, shall we?
The concept of change
One thing is certain when it comes to seo. Things will always be changing at one point or another.
You see, any search engine and not just Google is always looking to get better for their customers and advertisers. After all, the only real way a search engine makes any money, is from advertising. So of course it makes sense, they want to make more cash.
So, the thing that anyone concerned with seo needs to understand is, this change will always take place. it’s almost like playing the stock market, always up and down web traffic can be.
Most people in seo get used to this one way or another. You have to, you cannot lose sleep over this forever.
But, never become so used to is so you don’t see changes coming.
What any expert will do especially in the seo field is, pick a few trusted advisers and subscribe to their news letters. Try to pick one for certain subjects of seo. You might find one who is great about reporting on Google updates and another who is great at ranking long form content.
Whatever it may be. just find a few and unsubscribe from the rest. I myself have about 10 trusted experts I read who I know report on seo. I read them regularly and it helps me keep informed.
Understand Some Things Never Change
While it seem that technology and seo are moving at the speed of light and continually changing the reality is they are not. Many core concepts that were invented back in 1998 still hold true today.
This is one of the other big problems for many seo’s. They really do not understand this. Take for instance content. Google has been saying for years to make good content and not thin pages. But since the Panda algorithm, everyone was surprised.
Google just finally found a safe way to to make good on what they have been telling people for years.
Most things are just improved upon with core concepts still in play.
Will Links Still Count In The Future?
Even if Google or any other search engine for that matter got rid of links as a ranking signal, you would still want to build them. Why? For traffic plain and simple.
The problem is most people only think about Google when building links. They stay away from things like “No Follow” links, which is ridiculous.
If you see a place where you can get a link and you know it’s relevant and will bring traffic then, by all means go for it. I wouldn’t even think about Google in this instance because the links was no follow.
Sure, still keep Google in mind but, do not let any search engine dictate your full link building strategy.
Here’s a question, If there were not search engines or they still to this day continued to suck like they did 15 years ago, would you still be as interested in blogging? I didn’t think so.
They only way people got traffic to their website in 1995 for free was by, you guessed it, building links. And, the only true way they work for traffic is, if they are from relevant sources where the person who clicks on the link will actually care about landing on your website.
But, Will Search Engines Still Count Links?
That, no one knows for sure. Recent reports over the last few years have shown, Google is working on trying to make a search engine that didn’t have to use links. So, it’s entirely possible, one day we would see a search engine not using links as a ranking signal. This is also something to keep in mind the concept of change.
Also understand, Google is working on things like a different view for their search engine and who’s to say they are not going to come out with some sister engine some day, where the view was entirely different and about different things.
Google has much at their disposal and they are most certainly always testing out new things.
And, do not count out other search engines. Just like Google has, there is someone, somewhere out there just trying to develop the next best search engine. All it would take is someone like another Steve Jobs or Bill Gates to set it into motion.
The Future Of Algorithms
Algorithms are the language of scientists and Google has many. For these changes I highly recommend you visit and read Bill Slawski’s Seo by the sea. Bill does a great job about reporting on Google patents, many of which are about their algorithms.
Just understand they will continually change and get better.
What About Google Penalties?
Again, no one knows for sure. But I would think Google will continue to develop Panda and Penguin for the next few years. There has been much talk, these are broken and they need to fix them or just make them better. Who knows?
But, realize they are continually looking for safe ways to get rid of search engine spam, without knocking good sites out of the way.
I would expect more to take place in the future. How many more? There’s no way to know that for sure. But always be on the lookout.
Future Ranking Factors
Ok here’s a good one, ranking factors. While I understand there are many of you who want to rank for certain keywords and that’s why you do what you do. Build links, on page etc. I even do these myself.
I still believe however for the future, great content will be where it’s at. Heck it already is.
Listen, if you make really good personal, informative posts, written well for people and, you make them long and thoughtful. You will have a good chance at ranking.
too many people write like a robot, without any substance or voice in their articles or posts. You want to have a voice.
Sure, all the other things will still apply, links, on page, off page, social, etc. But, people just do not get content marketing well enough and the role it plays in seo.
Google and other engine like Bing are looking at content, we know this from the Panda change. It was designed to knock out crappy thin affiliate sites.
And, if you write longer more informative posts, you will have a better chance at ranking for many more search terms.
What Does Google Want?
No one really knows this with 100% certainty. But, I do believe they tell us a lot. Just read their Google webmaster guidelines and instead of taking a “oh this is horrible stance”, try and think outside the box.
The things we know they want are Good and real content by real authors. So reading this, any affiliate marketer is going to say “oh this is crap”.
Well, hold on a second. Is it really crap? Do Google really hate affiliates? No they don’t. What they do hate is a website by an affiliate marketer without substance.
You don’t need to truly be an expert in a field to have seo success. You could still be an affiliate and make it work. But, how do you achieve this?
Easy, pick a topic, mostly any topic you love and can write about. Let’s say it’s weight loss and you have struggled with weight loss a few times in your life.
So, you start a website about weight loss and your journey to losing weight. Will it take a ton of content and or links to make it a success? Most likely yes. But you could choose your keywords wisely and add a personal spin to each article you write. And, Google will reward a site like this dependent on a few factors.
Just make sure you are compliant with all affiliate laws and keep writing.
The bottom line, Google wants real sites from real people.
Social Search Engines
Did you know that Facebook is also a search engine? Or Youtube? That’s right, they are. And, they may continue to get better. Social already plays a huge part for where many people go online these days and it’s no surprise marketers are also right there behind them trying to market their products and services.
for now search engines like Google are where it’s at. But who’s to say one day Facebook will beat out Google? Highly unlikely now but again, it’s the concept of changes.
How To Prepare For Future SEO
When trying to prepare for the future, understand right up front you will never get this right 100%. It’s impossible. However, if you have blogs or websites, it’s time to look them over and make a plan for the future.
Most everything we need is already in front of us. You could always get a tool like Screaming Frog and check over your website. You could check for things like thin content pages, technical problems and more.
You could also use Google Analytics and check the bounce rates of your pages and see if you have content issues. You could also use Link Detox and check your backlink profile.
The point is you want to be doing more than the other guy.
Always Have A Plan
If you have an online business, I urge you, always have a plan. One day you might have built your website traffic up to 700,000 visitors a month and then suddenly it may be down to 100,000 a month.
Now this does not mean you are a complete failure or anything. Google has just changed the rules they use to rank things. This has happened to many websites and some were getting 700,000 visitors a month.
And then Google releases and update and bam, they lost much of their traffic over night. This is why it’s important to have a plan in place. I would go and talk to an Google penalty expert and consult with them about your site.
This way if anything does happen you at a bare minimum have someone you can call to help you get back on track. Trust me, you don’t want to get caught not knowing what to do when you have people working for you who count on their jobs.