This isn’t a technical review of SEO over a 10-year span-- plenty of others have already given detailed coverage from that perspective. This is what you should know as an average businessperson interested in a workable strategy for generating traffic to a website.
Google came on the scene in the 1990’s, along with Yahoo!, AOL, and numerous others that have either faded away or were bought up by the brands we know today. So what has happened since? Let's dive in!
In 2006, the Big Daddy algorithm finished up around March. By 2007 the standard 10-page search engine results page was officially declared dead as Google rolled out Universal Search. This feature added more complexity to how things were sorted and made a path for more variables within search results (video, news, images, local, etc.).
Are you seeing a pattern here? The online space is evolving according to the consumer’s needs and abilities to access information. Being limited to keywords and phrases was not going to cut it for us humans.
2013 – The Final Demise of Keyword Ranking as a Strategy
Contextual search has replaced the more simple keyword strategy and is a feature that's getting more refined with each passing day. Consumers have come to expect to be able to type questions and get answers instead of limited answers restricted by short phrases and words.
They also came to expect the most relevant results in terms of where their geography. They needed websites to display well on their mobile devices so they could just get things done.
2014 and Beyond
In 2014 Google told us websites should be built on a responsive platform and a separate mobile site became an outdated solution.Search engine optimization has become a strategy for delivering a human experience to people who want what you have to offer.A website at the heart of it that delivers a custom experience based on the needs of the visitor.Friendly… what a concept!
The term, SEO, has a new meaning these days. Optimize your entire Internet presence and stop worrying so much about those keywords.
Originally published Sep 9, 2014 10:00:00 AM, updated January 18 2023