There is a growing trend amongst search engines to personalise the browsing experience, making it that little more friendly and individual. Ask.com got the social search bandwagon rolling when it announced its link up with Facebook: Google quickly followed suit by including Twitter updates in its search returns. Now Bing has announced its own link up with Facebook that will allow the Microsoft search engine to return results based on the Facebook ‘Likes’ of the searcher’s friends.
The aim of all these alliances is, it appears, to individualise searches and produce results that are more tailored to the searcher’s personal footprint. From a user’s point of view, the advantages are self-evident. The question remains though, what affect will this shift in emphasis have for SEO companies? Will they have to completely re-assess the way they approach their work, or will it simply mean continued evolution?
The obvious answer would appear to be that SEOs will have to change and reassess their strategies in the light of these search engine alliances. That much is understood: search engine optimisation is a dynamic business anyway and is subject to constant change as it is. This could be argued to be just another hurdle that has to be negotiated. However, what remains clear is that the role of the SEO remains the same as it ever was – to use all possible methods to get their clients towards the top end of the search results.
Social media is already prominent in online marketing. Facebook is everywhere and can boast 500 million users. Twitter is in resurgence and in hot pursuit of its rival. In the not-too-distant future other social network sites will no doubt come along too. Social media is here to stay, that’s a fact. Consequently any company involved in search engine optimisation will need to integrate this into their strategies. The role of the SEO is to adapt to the various changes that come along in the search engine sector. There certainly is no need for drastic changes when this landscape changes: all that’s required is that SEOs evolve along side the search engines to ensure that searchers get the results they need.
It’s not like this is a completely unexpected challenge. Think of the changes that the new Google algorithms brought or the development of Google Local, let alone paid and instant searches. SEOs have had to evolve over the years as change has taken place. Evolution is central to the success of any SEO and will no doubt continue over the coming weeks and months.