The way we do SEO is shifting. This is due, in large part, to the way Google is producing product search results. SEO marketers have been struggling to catch up and it has become just a little bit harder to get your name out on the massive World Wide Web. So how do you effectively carve out your own SEO marketing plan to promote your business?
This new change that Google initiated in early 2012 was meant to boost the user experience when searching for a particular product. Google is even more user focused than it was before, so SEO companies have to rethink the way they send links out online. Before this change occurred, it was okay to pay a link building lackey $0.01 per link that sticks – even if the link was on a completely unrelated website (think a prom dress link on a monster truck discussion forum).
Now, there will be no more free product placements in Google search results, and merchants will need to bid to display their products – from just a listing all the way up to premium placement. Those merchants who want to pay top dollar will be awarded sponsored product images.
Google’s paid search will have some serious ramifications – you may already be experiencing some by way of a drop in traffic to your site. Google is, without a doubt, the top search engine on the web, so when it makes a change, businesses either suffer or grow. By having the search results trend towards those merchants who pay to have their products first, quality content will falter.
Additionally, having products displayed prominently across the top of the page will encourage users to look more closely to those products rather than scroll through text listings further down. Many people do not want to have a ton of options – with the rush, rush, rush of today’s society, who has time to scroll through endless pages of results? No, users today trust that Google will bring them the “best” results first – however, those “best” results may now mean “those product results that have the most money behind them.”
Google has made it harder to get around its rules. Since it is the largest search engine, you need to play by Google’s rules if you want Google’s (many) users. One way Google is encouraging merchants to keep up with the new changes is to make sure all of your products have the correct keywords, and to keep your website up to date.
When you use SEO to promote your site, make sure it is on relevant websites with engaging content – not just spammy links. It will be tough to keep up with all the changes in Google, plus make sure your site has unique, current, and interesting content. Some merchants have decided to outsource their SEO marketing to actual SEO firms so that they can focus more on the business of being in business.