If you’ve been on Google lately, whether to do a simple web search or check the analytics of your latest online search marketing campaign, you likely noticed something a bit different with the site. Perhaps it took you a few minutes to put your finger on what exactly had changed, but the difference probably soon became clear: Google’s Search Engine Results Pages (SERP) have undergone a design update.
In an attempt to streamline users’ search experience and to keep results pages consistent on PCs, tablets and smartphones, the search engine giant decided to give people more breathing room, moving its search tools to the top of the page. These options had previously been in an always-visible sidebar on the right of the displayed results.
How the SERP Update Can Affect Your Search Results
Organic searching—when a website appears in results based strictly on its keywords and relevant content—is a goal of effective SEO practices. By playing by the search engines’ rules and implementing key terms prospects will search for in their property hunt, it’s likely you have been rewarded in the past by receiving organic traffic.
However, according to Business 2 Community, Google’s latest update and extra breathing room actually hinders websites from receiving that desired organic traffic. The sidebar-free results page instead make Google’s Knowledge Graph—the feature often seen to the right of listing that offers CliffsNotes-style organized results that draw the web searcher’s eye—more visible.
In addition, paid ads for competitors may also overshadow organic search results, as the paid ads are now displayed bigger than before above results and in a separate sidebar to the right.
How to Work with The Changes
Whenever Google updates its search tactics or results display, many people on the Internet seem to flounder until they get used to the changes. Rather than wasting valuable marketing time worrying about the transformation, you can bulk up your current promotional strategies by putting a greater emphasis on organic search tactics, such as:
• Doing keyword research and tracking results
• Utilizing keywords on website descriptions and alt text within URLs and site copy
• Regularly updating a content-rich blog
• Promoting properties and posts on social media avenues that may appear on SERPs
Instead of letting updates discourage or negatively affect your current strategic internet marketing campaign, spend a bit of extra time researching the latest SEO tips.
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