This is How Search Queries are Changing SEO

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As a marketer or SEO specialist, you’ve probably villainized Google once or twice or maybe all the time. Google constantly changes the algorithm, it modifies what’s important, it starting valuing things differently. It’s so hard to keep up!

 

But after watching HubSpot’s webinar, The New Age of SEO, I came to the realization that Google is no longer the enemy in SEO. Although you're used to constantly battling Google’s latest algorithm change, newest rules, brain ranking, etc….it’s no longer the deciding factor.

Having Google’s algorithm was like having a 3 X 5 crumbled notecard with the tiniest handwriting to be used for SEO improvements. Granted, not the most legible cheatsheet, but still something you could use. Studying the algorithm meant you could create a map of content that has risen and that that has slid down the pages. Having this guide means as marketers, you can follow it and create content that fits within the algorithm and rank better.

Granted, these algorithms continue to get smarter, adapt and are increasingly complicated, but a guide nonetheless can be created.

Now, your biggest obstacle is much more mysterious and complex. The new Goliath marketers face is confusing and expects you to be able to read minds.

It’s the searcher.

At the beginning of the searching era, searches were easy, straightforward, keyword heavy. Google was a machine that spoke in fragments. Now, the searchers believe Google can predict that “around me” means Houston, Atlanta, or New York depending on where “me” is.

Algorithms may have gotten smarter at understanding how to read content, but people are setting higher expectations on search results which means our content must do the same.

Keywords will continue to have a place in SEO and in Google’s algorithm, but the biggest game changer are the searchers themselves.

Gone are the days when someone would search “plumber bathroom Houston, TX” and now are the days when searchers are more like “best-reviewed bathroom repair” and the plumber is implied. Google has already gotten smart about the nuances of certain words which can express where in the buying process an individual might be. Now, the searchers are using more common language to express their query because they think Google knows.

You’ve probably already seen this in action in Google’s commercial for Google Home Mini, the Google Assistant for your house. Google isn’t making algorithms harder on marketers, people are making search query relevancy harder on marketers.

The commercial even touches on the latest form of search - speech. More commonly will search queries include common lingo and casual wording and marketers will have to pick up the pace with content.

How can you combat ….the searcher/your potential client/your neighbor...yourself? By continuing to create genuine and useful content, using words and phrases people are more likely to resonate with, having a human voice throughout, and being sincere in what you post. Great content will continue to reign above spammy, irrelevant and unshareable content.