The Ups and Downs of Search Engine Marketing

The Ups and Downs of Search Engine Marketing

Since Google Panda, many search engine marketing plans have felt less like plans and more like improvising on the fly. With Google adding new updates to Panda seemingly just as often as they make some creative change to their logo, search engine marketing can seem like a roller coaster ride at this point in time.

Just this week I came across a really eye-opening Youtube video that actually takes you inside the Googleplex and gives you a look at the process by which Google makes changes to their search algorithm. If you are concerned with Search Engine Marketing and trying to make sure that the site you are optimizing actually continues to rank well it is interesting to consider this process:

First Google identifies hundreds of what they call “Motivating Searches”—basically searches that seem not be getting the kind of results that Google would like. Google tracks these and places them into lists.

Ranking Engineers then try to figure out why they aren’t working and come up with an idea as to how the algorithm might be tweeked to make search better.

Then they test these changes with independent (not Google programmers) “Raters” who grade whether their searches were improved. And they also experiment with a small test sample of actual users.

They then take all of the data from their experiments and have a Search Analyst examine it.

After all this they present the findings and if it seems the change would improve search, they implement it into the top secret Google Search Algorithm, and we watch as our websites suddenly jump in SERP position if the change affects our sites or our competitors’ sites ahead of us.

How often does Google make these sorts of changes to their Algorithm? Given the amount of effort to make such a change you might expect this to be a Panda like event which Google only does once or twice a year, or at most once a month.

According to the video, however, last year the changes were implemented over500 times!

That’s right Google basically alters their algorithm virtually every day, if not twice a day. Of course, most of these changes are sure to be minor and not even have an effect on your web pages. Few will be massive changes like those implemented by Google Panda which seems to still be reverberating across the internet.

But if you are in the midst of a Search Engine Marketing strategy, it is a good idea to always keep this fact in mind. Google is always looking for ways to improve the search experience for their users, which means that if you want to truly harness the power of the internet to help your business, you always need to be trying to do the same. It is clear that doing things to make your website more valuable to your users in whatever way possible is likely to help you do well on Google as well.

If you are interested in seeing that video for yourself, just go to Youtube and search for “Google Algorithm.” It is currently the top video that comes up.

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