The History of SEO, and a Glimpse Into Its Future

Search engines, while only two decades old, have completely changed the way we discover and find information, connect with people remotely, and most importantly, how we find goods and services. Here’s a look into how SEO has grown and evolved since its start.

No longer are we waiting to stumble on an ad to realise we need something — we’re actively seeking out information online about products and services we want to buy. 

These changing consumer behaviors have led to explosive growth in the field of SEO as businesses looked to capitalise on potential customers searching for information related to their product or services online. Today, there are almost a million people on LinkedIn with SEO in their job title. 

But as SEO has evolved, a growing division has grown between those people in marketing who try to stay within Google’s guidelines (as best they can), and those who try to beat the algorithm

So What is SEO Today?

A strategy Google would love today includes: 

  • A website with an amazing user experience. One that keeps people coming back for more because it’s been developed with your potential and existing customers in mind.
  • Content that is designed for a certain group of people; people who have shared goals, pain points, and challenges (we call these buyers personas). Content that’s available in the right place at the right time, so it’s helpful and relevant, not interruptive. 
  • Social channels that are used to communicate with customers to help them and make them happy.

Today, if you’re a search engine agency or a company focusing on inbound marketing, it’s the focus on “SEO” in the traditional sense that could be leading your results astray. Look beyond the technical nitty gritty of what you’ve always done and think about the bigger picture:

  • When planning your keyword strategy, think about your buyer personas and what keywords are relevant to them.
  • Have a clear understanding of who you’re trying to attract to your site.
  • Is your content developed with your dream customers in mind or are you using low quality sources to just create lots of content to target keywords?
  • Relationships with influencers are a key part of any marketing strategy.
  • Marketing is all about communication now.

If  looking back on how SEO began has taught us anything, it’s that the world of SEO continues to grow and evolve as user behaviors do. It’s not just about keywords anymore.

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