SEO Tips for 2012
The idea of searching for information is really nothing new. For most of history, we'd just ask our tribemates or neighbors for advice on solutions. More recently, we started flipping through the almanac or yellow pages. Now Google, Bing and Yahoo are our avenues for connecting with products and services. It's no secret that SEO has changed dramatically over time, to provide consumers what they want and to prevent marketers from gaming the system.
Inspired by HubSpot's recent eBook, Learning SEO from the Experts, we've compiled a few of our favorite, Tweetable stats on the state of search:
1. Your On-Page SEO is only 25% of How Your Search Ranking is Determined (via HubSpot) Tweet
The Takeaway: It's still important to use a variety of long-tail keywords and SEO techniques, like meta tags, alt text and an internal linking strategy to ensure your web page jives well with search engines and readers. Writing valuable content matters, too and it's going to help a lot more than getting your tags just right. Your blog content needs to generate social media shares and inbound links to achieve and maintain a high rank..
2. 95% of the US Online Population Uses a Search Engine Once a Month or More.(via Compete) Tweet
3. The Average Online American Uses Search 37 Times Monthly. (via Compete) Tweet
4. SEO is not about optimizing for search engines, it’s about optimizing for humans. (via HubSpot founder Dharmesh Shah) Tweet
The Takeaway: You could find the most magical long-tail keyword in the world of search and fail to rank well if your content doesn't matter to humans. You need to generate Tweets, Facebook shares and inbound links from relevant sources in order to rise to the top of Google. Ask not what the keywords can do for you. Ask yourself why your buyer personas are searching that term in the first place, and how you can develop content that answers their real-life FAQ.
5. Facebook handles close to 1 billion search queries per day.(via Facebook)Tweet
6. 92% of consumers worldwide trust recommendations from friends more than any advertising.(via Nielson)Tweet
7. 18% fewer consumers trust advertising over friends and family than in 2007.(via Nielson) Tweet
The Takeaway: At the end of the day, consumers come to view Google with suspicion if the top search result for an Italian restaurant in their neighborhood turns out to be pretty darn bad. Google isn't a tool for serving businesses, it's a tool for serving people. People don't want to buy from the companies that had the best internal linking strategy and keyword research habits, they just want the best. Recommendations from their real-life friends and family on Facebook are easier to believe than pure Google ranking.
8. Bing accounted for 30% of all searches in spring of 2012. (via HubSpot)Tweet
9. Ranking #1 Only Results in 20% of Traffic for That Search Query. (via SEOMoz)Tweet
While 75% of search users will never click through to the second page, the eye isn't automatically driven to the top spot in search. It's drawn towards the most eye-catching and fancy search result above the fold. Eye-candy, like a Google+ photo if you've earned Google authorship and video content can be much more eye-catching than plain text. Providing content that's visually appealing and search optimized could be your sharpest move in the world of new SEO.
image courtesy of SEO Our Site and infographic courtesy of HubSpot