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Lots of changes at Google search

Adventurelife

Adventurelife

New Member
Guys if you are making revenue from Google via organic or PPC search a lot of changes have happened over the last couple of days.

No one has their head totally round it yet as tests are still happening but fairly radical changes mean you need to check your listings and make a plan
 
EmployEasily Legal Services

EmployEasily Legal Services

EmployEasily Legal Services
I've held off commenting on this post to see what impact these changes would have on our SERPS.......and so far at least, not much it would seem, at least on the surface......

The difference in the way Google Places listings are being displayed - now woven into the main listings instead of out on their own - was immediate and easy to spot but others haven't been.

Whilst our SERPS for the primary keywords we're targeting doesn't appear to have changed much - (we're still ranking top ten for several and closing in on top 10 for 2 others) we did notice a significant change in traffic volumes.

Our overall site visit numbers has more than doubled and our unique visits has increased from the mid 70% to low 80% range. A more detailed analysis of our site traffic would suggest that long-tail search traffic is the main driver of the increase but traffic from our targeted keywords has also grown.

Anyone else experiencing similar changes in site traffic?
 
Aillum

Aillum

New Member
I've noticed quite a few changes, but not a huge amount of impact yet. I did read a few articles suggesting that one of the changes was to improve longer tail keyword performance, specifically referring to ecommerce and information sites that have hundreds of pages. So it could be that changes that you’re seeing within your improved figures.

What I would say, is that all the changing that's going on (whether for good or bad),points out a need to not rely on organic search so much. There are companies who rely only on organic search as their main traffic source, but what happens to them if such changes have a negative impact? There should be more exploration of other low cost channels such as email and social media, and - without sounding like a shameless plug (sorry!) – far more focus on improving the conversion / interaction rates of those visiting, so that a reduction in visit levels doesn’t have as big an impact as it might have otherwise.
 
Mike Lewis

Mike Lewis

New Member
Brian,

You're absolutely right about not relying too much on organic search results. I've known people who have built their entire business model on the basis of high search engine rankings, which is foolhardy to say the least.

But I'm not sure I agree with your point about email and social media. I know there's a lot of buzz about social media at the moment, but I can't see how it will ever generate the volumes of traffic that a successful business will get from the likes of Google.

As for email, if you're talking about sending high volumes of email to people who might have no interest in your product or service, that could be counter-productive, to say the least.

(I'm sure lots of folk here will disagree with me on the social media issue. That's OK. I know in the minority on this point.)

Mike
 
Aillum

Aillum

New Member
Hi Mike … I don’t disagree with anything you’ve said, including the comments about Social Media.

The point I was making was the exploration of other channels. Some may work, some may not, but relying solely on one channel such as organic search is dangerous, particularly when that channel can change without your input. Social and Email were simple examples of other channels that could be explored. Of course, there are others such as Affiliate Marketing, PPC, PR Distribution and so on. I wasn’t suggesting people ignore organic search, far from it – but testing additional channels should also be considered.

I completely agree that social media won’t drive the levels of traffic that Google will, but you have a little more control over it and it could be that the conversion levels from it are better for certain companies. I’m working with a client just now who has a higher conversion rate from Facebook than they do from Google, but a fairly significant difference in traffic. This hasn’t meant changing to a 100% focus on Facebook, but rather a slight re-prioritisation of resource to put more focus on it.

I see more instances of social not working, than working, but a lot of that is down to expectation in my opinion. A lot of people read the “Dell Generate $50 Million from Twitter” examples and assume social is a revenue generator. In my experience, success on social media comes from using it as a relationship building vehicle rather than out-and-out sales. Unfortunately some people forget that relationships take time to develop, and don’t give it the time it needs. I agree though that it doesn’t work for everyone.

As for email, again, I agree that mailing thousands of non-relevant people can be a waste of resource. My reference to email was specifically (although I didn’t say so) related to a companies own database of clients and potential clients. Simple email updates, offers, news postings and so on can generate high conversions. It’s also low cost and shows the company to be keeping in touch with its base.

Again, I’m not suggesting at all that people ignore organic to focus on a different channel. Rather, the point I was trying to make was that other channels could / should be used alongside organic.
 
Mike Lewis

Mike Lewis

New Member
Brian,

What you say makes good sense. I think we're broadly in agreement.

As you say, a lot of it comes down to having realistic expectations, and to maintain a sensible balance in your marketing methods.

Mike
 
Adventurelife

Adventurelife

New Member
In broad agreement however I have built several businesses on the back of high google rankings, I am yet to find a way to build a business as quickly or cheaply as having high serp ranking does.

Obviously the minute you start to gain clients you start to diversify your marketing into a more holistic marketing effort so that you are not exposed to much to the google god as as has just happen they will constantly make changes some will be good some will be bad.

I now view social media the same way I viewed search engines a decade ago and have been playing, testing and most importantly earning from it for a while now. The results are good enough to now start putting decent resource behind it.

Obviously with all the chat and snake selling that goes on in this area it is an area that will take a long while , longer than SEO in my opinion to get bedded into mainstream business which provides a window of opportunity for those businesses who have their heads around it.

Major downside I see to it is that it will always be labour intensive where SEO is intensive to begin with but is a maintaining job later on, social media marketing will always only be as good as your ongoing input.

Back to the original post I made . I have seen a lot of changes to our sites with the changes some positive some negative but I am still seeing changes on a daily basis so I do not think it has settled yet to give accurate reports.
 
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