MozCon Local took place recently in Seattle, and industry leaders wasted no time before pulling us head first into their experiment findings, research, insights and predictions. We all know SEO is evolving because that’s been the nature of the industry since its inception. However, things seem to be changing faster than ever as technology progresses and search algorithms become more complex.
When it comes to controlling search results, SEO specialists walk a fine line. Many consider SEO to be the process of “manipulating” search results by making methodical edits to websites so they will rank higher. “Manipulate” is such a negative word though. Yes, Google instructs SEO specialists on how to “manipulate” its search results, but that doesn’t mean we should falsify or misrepresent our websites. We aren’t trying to deceive search engines into ranking us higher.
However, in the wild west of the internet, there are parties out there with less admirable intentions. After both the Brexit and the US election, a hot topic emerged: fake news.
This time, the public was being manipulated.
Given that I eat, sleep, and breathe SEO, I deal with content regularly. Good content, bad content, and just plain ugly content. If there’s one thing that’s worse than bad content for content marketing purposes, it’s bad content for SEO.
With that said, the last thing a copywriter wants to hear is SEO ideas for content. They’re not focused on keywords and search volume. They’re interested in the content itself.
And we agree.
The creative process should be left largely unadulterated. We -- SEOs, creatives, content marketers -- should be creating content for our readers, not search engines. We should be writing content to educate and inspire audiences.
Which is where competitive research comes in. Doing competitive research for content ideas does entail looking into search trends. But it’s more than that. It’s using tools to see what the market is hungry for. It’s seeing what competitors are doing and making that a baseline for what content and creative can achieve. It’s finding what’s out there, what consumers want, and seeing how we can better serve those wants.
It’s about giving customers more.
When making a decision, most of us like to think we use logic and reason to come to a conclusion. However, research shows that emotions are a larger factor than logic. Although economic theory argues information, logical reasoning, and knowledge contribute to optimal decision-making, psychologists defend The Somatic Marker Hypothesis, which is the idea that emotions alone guide our choices.
Because of the ever-changing dynamic of the SEO industry, it's crucial for SEO practitioners to stay up to date on algorithm changes, adapt to new best practices and evolve our strategies in response. Here’s a recap of some of the most recent major SEO happenings as we transition from spring to summer.