Search engine optimization is a practice that web developers, programmers, and site owners have been perfecting over the years. The aim of SEO is simple: make a site rank high on search engine results pages (SERPs). Nevertheless, huge differences exist when it comes to achieving this goal. In addition, SEO techniques have changed and evolved over the years. Here is some more information about SEO: past present:
The Early Years of SEO:
During the early years, search engines did not operate the way they do today. For example, they did not use sophisticated algorithms to rank sites. In addition, they did not index URLs and web pages very well. As a result, early web developers engaged in unsavory SEO and online marketing tactics like keyword stuffing and link building to ensure their sites ranked high on SERPs. However, Google quickly caught on to these unsavory practices and started using regular algorithm updates to ensure web users could access relevant, informative, useful, and quality content. In 2002, Google introduced Adwords and changed the advertising and SEO landscape significantly. By 2003, Google was more or less the dominant search engine.
At the turn of the decade, Google’s algorithms were quite sophisticated. However, knowledgeable web developers and SEO experts could still manipulate these algorithms to make sure their sites ranked higher. To deal with this problem, Google made these manipulations almost impossible with the 2011 Panda and 2012 Penguin updates. For example, the Panda update made it hard for sites that had duplicate content, engaged in keyword stuffing or used filler content to rank high on SERPs.
SEO at Present:
Today major search engines such as Google largely dictate how the SEO industry operates. Currently, several factors determine a site’s rank on SERPs. To start with, Google’s Hummingbird update has introduced a semantic search angle to SERPs. Secondly, sites optimized to render well on mobile devices are fast becoming the norm as more people use smartphones and tablets to surf the internet. Thirdly, Google has openly stated that HTTPs will become a site-ranking factor in the near future to protect web users from cybercriminals. Fourthly, social media signals will increasingly play a role in site ranking according to a Forbes Report.
Search engine optimization has changed a lot since the early days when search engines and directories such as AltaVista, Infoseek, Hotbot, and Google had difficulties indexing dynamic URLs. Currently, sites that do not contain valuable and relevant information are unlikely to rank high on search engine results pages.
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