Staff Writer: Jessica Ross
Google has made it harder for honest SEO consultants to offer affordable search engine optimization services. When it went public in 2003 the quality of search results started to decline.
Google implemented updates like the “Florida Google Update” and in January 2004 the “Austin” update, started cutting out many great websites from certain search inquiries, and instead showing low-quality sites like online directories. Mostly instead of a search being geared towards finding a product being old, the searcher was only receiving results about information on said products. Why?
Google doesn’t make money on organic searches. They would place relevant “sponsored” ads at the beginning of the results. These ads provided links to a seller of a product, which made the searcher happy, the sponsored company happy, and Google’s pocketbook the happiest.
Eventually they added a little more “commercial,” instead of totally doing “informative,” but not nearly enough to provide competition to their sponsored ads. These “commercial” organic results looked relevant on the surface but the content was made by sketchy companies who were great at comment spamming and article spinning. So the organic results still weren’t very helpful past the sponsored ad.
Even local search engine optimization services are affected by this. The only way to counter these poor organic search results is to buy into Google’s Adwords. This will help a little, but unless you are a huge brand name or can pay Google’s prices or are offering an obscure product or service, you can just dream about being a sponsored ad. For local searches, a business that sells office supplies will be over shadowed by a big brand name ad along with obscure yet relevant results.
These poor search results are being talked heavily about across the internet community. It may eventually cause Google to fix the issues, but as long as they are making money public companies usually don’t conform to true public opinion. This search engine might make exception to that and change since they do base their reputation on providing with excellent search results. But they might need incentive, such as people stop using their site/clicking on the provide ads. Clearly that won’t be happening anytime soon.
What’s an SEO consultant to do? Google clearly doesn’t care about search engine optimization and only cares about profits now. One could conform to the spammy way of SEO and ruin the internet further or invest heavily into Google Adwords, which helps Google to keep the search results how they currently are and continues the viscous cycle. Another way is to just stick it out and hope Google comes around. Keep doing honest search engine optimization techniques and teach the ways a search engine should operate.
None of those ways will help SEO consultants stay affordable and the first two will not help the clients in the long run of things. One can only hope that Google sees the light and finds a way to keep their profits up while boosting the quality of their search results.