I remember when Google launched as a brand new search engine. The cornerstone of their algorithm was pagerank and they were revolutionary because they took site rankings beyond on-page criteria. At that time, blogging technology didn’t exist, social media sites didn’t exist, etc. Therefore, it made perfect sense to consider links as votes, which is quintessentially what the Pagerank ranking algorithm was about.
Fast forward to 2012 and oh, how the internet has changed. Everyone and their grandpa has a blog. There are a large number of social media sites, giving people a true voice on the internet.
The internet has now become truly democratic, with users now having a much louder voice and control about what they like and dislike. Now, instead of links from business sites being votes, Google has given power to users. Votes have evolved from simple links to endorsements.
Post-penguin, Google’s new algorithm is based on endorsements from individuals across their blogs, social media profiles, news sites, business sites, etc. So a site is evaluated not just from the point of view of straight links but also other social media and user actions such as:
– How many people like this site on Facebook?
– How many people have tweeted or retweeted a page from this site?
– How often is the site StumbledUpon?
– Have people removed this site from their personal results?
– How much time do people spend on the site?
– Do they come back often, or never again?
– Are people talking about this site on blogs?
The democratization of Google’s search algorithm will completely change the playing field. No longer will small firms have the capacity to compete with large corporate businesses. To rank well now requires vast and varied resources, from gaining the knowledge necessary to establish a presence, to maintaining an active profile, to producing quality resources and providing a high quality website that people enjoy. Businesses can’t just build links any more, and have a great internet presence. Now businesses have to build links, build connections with other industry players, build amazing content, create and maintain active social profiles, create viral campaigns, create newsworthy content that gets picked up by the media, etc.
How can small or medium-sized businesses compete?
Come back to read our blue-print for success in this new democratic Google world.
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