A shift in trends for search engine marketing

I came across an interesting graph the other day when playing around with Google trends.  When you plot the trends for PPC and SEO side by side since 2004 you can see a clear shift in interest.  The market (or so trends suggests) has shifted from being highly PPC biased to the complete opposite.

search marketing trends

I put this shift down to a commoditisation of PPC in many areas of the market, alongside Google’s aggressive sales strategy, as well as a demystifying of SEO into something which is now a core part of any online marketing strategy.

It will be interesting for me to see how this progresses over the next year or so as back when I started out in PPC it was very much the mysterious beast that SEO is now, or has been in recent years.  But as it has become less of a mystery, and companies have become to understand it more, many services have become devalued and with agencies having to make sure they are at the cutting edge of the market to make sure they are adding sufficient value to their clients.  As SEO too, becomes a more widely covered topic will it go the same way?  Will the fees clients are willing to pay be driven down and more clients look to take their SEO in house?

If so, what will replace it?  You can see on the bottom of the trend graph Facebook advertising starting to creep into the picture as a trending keyword, maybe some terminology around social advertising is going to be the next boom topic in digital advertising.  It’ll be interesting to see how it pans out.

Search Marketing Infographics

Infographics seem to be becoming a very popular method for displaying information on social media and search engine marketing, as well as a useful link building tool for their producers.  Below are a collection of useful infographics I have come across recently that help explain search engine marketing, SEO and PPC.

How Does Google Work?

Infographic by PPC Blog

scatterplot seo tactics

Scatter plot graphic by SEOmoz

Google PageRank Explained

Link juice infographic

Pagerank and Linkjuice Infographic by Elliance

The Future’s Bright, The Futures Real Time

After the inclusion of tweets into the search results, and the displaying of fresh news content in relevant SERPs, Google has launched another advancement today which they hope will make their search engine results even more relevant and up to date.  The Google Caffeine update, which has been confirmed as live across their whole network, is not an algorithm change, but a change in the way Google spiders and indexes content.  Search Engine Land summaries the change well, but the bottom line is that it should mean new, fresh content, appears in the Google results a lot sooner than previously.

Each time a breaking news story occurs on the web, there is a flurry of activity as people search to find out the detail, the inside scoop, or the eye witness acount.  Twitter has benefitted from this phenomenon due to its real time nature and community base, and Google wants to do the same.  Whilst people are still using search eninges to find services and goods, theres are a massive amount of search for news and articles, and the more Google can ensure it is providing the freshest, most up to date content, the better the experience for these users.

For content providers this shouldntmean  any change in rankings or traffic, as mentioned above, it isnt an algorithm change, but it should mean that when you add new content, it appears in the SERPs quicker.  It does however strengthen the need for fresh new content.  Google already rewards fresh content in certain areas and with this rollout and more of a focus on “real time” this is bound to become more prominent.

New Year, New Name!

After a period of sporadic blogging I have decided to make a change for the New Year. The Digital Lookout is no more, but dont despair, I am replacing it with a new project, This Digital Life.  Rather than struggle to find time writing lengthy posts about key topics the plan is to have more regular, shorter posts on my general daily thoughts about the digital world I am involved in.  Hopefully this will make for more frequent updates, but I suppose only time will tell!

2009 Ends With a Bang!

Just as we were all starting to look forward to our turkey, panic about what to by for who, and make plans for 2010 the world of search engine marketing throws a couple of final curve balls our way!  2009 has been another year of change for the world of digital advertising and search engine marketing we’ve had new search engines launched, deals done which we are yet to fully understand the implications of, and external contributing factors to contend with (that’s the recession by the way!).  With the year coming to a close Google decides it is not yet done and throws is real time, and personalised search to contend with and understand for 2010.  I plan to write a number of posts on what 2010 looks like for search marketing and digital advertising so for now, here’s just a handful of things that have changed in 2009 and links to where you can read more.  In no particular order:

So much has happened I have undoubtedly missed something from this list so I will look to add to it in the coming days.  For now, I am off for another mince pie!  Merry Christmas and a prosperous 2010 to you all!