Life Without Google – Will Your Website Survive the Future of Search Engines?

Search engine optimization has governed the minds and actions of webmasters everywhere for the past decade. Some online entrepreneurs spend thousands of dollars trying to please the search engines. From hiring SEO specialists to participating in questionable tactics thought to improve rankings, the typical website owner places most of their faith in the ability of the search engines to drive their traffic -

If Google disappeared tomorrow, would your website fade as well?

Not long ago, every internet user turned to the search engines for their online needs. Whether you were researching, shopping, or just surfing – Google or Yahoo were typically the starting point. Today the search engines still play a very important role in our online experience, but our methods of discovering new websites are shifting tremendously.

How do you, personally, use the Internet?

Chances are – your target audience uses it the same way. The internet has evolved into an interactive community. RSS feeds, social media, and the new web 2.0 have changed the way we search, surf, and work online. While you may ‘Google’ the new car you’re considering or search for the latest sports scores, the typical internet user of today will see, read, and even share dozens of websites each day without ever seeing a search engine — is your website benefiting from this type of traffic or are you still relying on nothing but SEO?

The New Face of Search Engines

With more and more internet users trusting their peers to recommend the best websites and online destinations, it makes sense that the major search engines would want to follow suit. In fact, a new Google is just around the corner. Instead of backlinks and keywords – ratings from other users, reader reviews, and comments will determine your rankings and drive your traffic.

Search engine optimization as we know it today could very well become a thing of the past once social search engines are in place and functional. Is your website ready for the next generation of SEO?

Search Engine Optimization for Web 2.0

The above link outlines several possibilities of tomorrow’s SEO but the key to a successful website, with or without the search engines, is to provide the rest of the online world with valuable, informative, and entertaining content. While keywords will still play a role in social search engine optimization, original, quality content will be more important than ever before.

You can prepare for the Google of tomorrow by being an active part of the online community today.

  • Participate in social media sites like Digg and StumbleUpon.
  • Use micro-blogging applications like Twitter and Plurk.
  • Become part of a blog community and actively contribute.
  • Connect with others at social networking sites like Facebook or LinkedIn.

While search engines will probably always be a significant part of the internet, they will not always be the search engines we know today. The social side of the internet is growing at a rapid rate and, in the very near future, Google’s new search engine will create an even bigger shift toward interaction, active involvement, and – most importantly – useful, informative content.

Further reading at The Future Buzz: This is a terrific first-hand example of the success organic traffic building can have today, as well as in the future. Great content and sincere interaction have built a successful website that will naturally fit into the new Google experimental search engine.

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Posted by Danielle

2 Comments

  1. Dave, July 24, 2008:

    Danielle, it’s a great article! Wish I’d done it! It speaks volumes about the way the Internet is headed. Search engines will have to change with it, or be left behind.

    My God, what a thought!

  2. Chris, July 28, 2008:

    The new face of search engines is already here. There are companies such as Me.dium (http://me.dium.com/search) that are processing user’s clickstream data in real-time to create a different lens based on what’s going on now. e.g. do a search for John Edwards on Google or Live, and you get johnedwards.com and wiki/johnedwards. Do the same search on Me.dium and you learn that today people care about his love child, pictures of his mistress, etc.

    The difference is real-time (what people are browsing now) vs. historical (what they browsed in the past). Social vs. Old School. Check it out! http://me.dium.com/search.

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