You won’t hear this from the Search Engine Optimisation industry. But you do hear it from Google themselves!
Google has announced their privacy policies are changing as of 1 March 2012. And in this announcement is the obituary for the Search Engine Optimisation industry. Google says:
Tailored for you
If you’re signed into Google, we can do things like suggest search queries – or tailor your search results – based on the interests you’ve expressed in Google+, Gmail, and YouTube. We’ll better understand which version of Pink or Jaguar you’re searching for and get you those results faster.
How we use information we collect
We use the information we collect from all of our services to provide, maintain, protect and improve them, to develop new ones, and to protect Google and our users. We also use this information to offer you tailored content – like giving you more relevant search results and ads.
“Tailored search results” and “more relevant search results” mean that each person will see a different page of search results in Google, depending on where they are located, what they have searched for and clicked on in the past, what Pages they follow in Google+, and sites they regularly visit. There is no longer any point in crafting your marketing strategy around “being on page one of Google”, because there is no longer a single, universal page one. Google’s aim is to provide a unique set of results “tailored” to your requirements.
As an example, let’s search for in Google for “smash repairs”. Let’s start with the default settings – I’m signed into my Google Account, and it knows I’m in Sydney:
Now, do the same search again, not signed into Google:
Expect and plan for the fact that these changes will progressively get stronger, as Google has clearly stated that their aim is to provide tailored, individual search results. By planning and implementing some simple strategies now, you can get in front of these changes and ensure that your site remains relevant and visible in the search results.
These strategies will ensure that your site stays relevant, even in the new world of personalised search results.