There’s an erroneous belief floating around that SEO is dead. (A Google search for “SEO is dead” offers 31,700,000 results.)
If you were excited about that, we’re sorry to burst your bubble – SEO is NOT dead, it’s just evolving.
Or, put another way, several SEO tactics are dead. For example:
Going crazy in link building
Link building is still one of Google’s favorite ranking factors, but now it’s quality over quantity. Instead of spending your time building as many links as possible, the relevance and value of your links matter more than how many links you have.
Being obsessed with being #1
Ranking #1 on a search page no longer ensures increased web traffic. In fact, the way Google’s results are laid out, you’ll see ads, featured snippets, and question boxes before you ever see the first result, so even the number one result is buried. Focus instead on maximizing your click-through rate with improved content structure and better meta descriptions and headlines.
Over-optimizing for a keyword
It used to be that the more keywords you had per page, the higher your page would rank. But as search engines become more sophisticated (and searching methods change), the new goal is to understand the intent behind the keywords. Optimize your site to offer a better user experience and more valuable content that answers users’ questions.
Forgetting about the people
Search engines have goals: to offer users (the people doing the searching) the most valuable and relevant results. User experience is now the number one way to use SEO – search results favor sites that answer users’ questions, are optimized to offer information the way people want it, and are mobile-friendly. (Consider giving social bookmarking a try.)
But SEO is not dead because 93% of online experiences start on a search engine – so search engines aren’t going away.
The way people surf the internet and look for information is changing, it’s true – people use mobile devices more than desktops to conduct searches, 23 billion devices (cars, watches, thermostats, and more) are connected to the internet (aka the internet of things, or IoT), and people use more ‘natural language’ to find what they’re looking for.
So can you declare SEO dead and stop caring about search engines? No.
Let's compromise: we'll say SEO has been reincarnated – it has a new focus and will require new strategies – but it’s still alive and kicking.
Need help with SEO? Drop us a line … we can help.