Search Engine Optimization is a game with constantly changing rules, and if you want your site to rank prominently in search results, it’s imperative that you understand the latest rulebook.
Unfortunately, that’s easier said than done. Because, for all intents and purposes, there is no rulebook.
We’re currently in the midst of one of the most turbulent periods of search engine ranking fluctuations ever — and even the experts are having a difficult time figuring out why.
What does that mean to you as an industrial marketer? We’ll break it down.
The Google Algorithm Fluctuates Every Day
Every single day, Google makes changes to the way that it ranks search engine results. While large-scale updates occur infrequently, even minor alterations can have big implications for businesses.
Large or small, Google rarely, if ever, gives advanced warning about upcoming changes. Even after the updates are deployed, the company seldom provides guidance or insight into what, exactly, changed. In fact, Google has been getting less and less transparent in recent years.
This is entirely understandable — the algorithm is what makes Google, Google — and the search engine giant wants to protect its secret sauce. They also want people to focus on creating quality sites instead of concentrating on manipulating their algorithm.
In a recent conversation, Google Webmaster Trends Analyst John Mueller confirmed as much. He advised, somewhat tongue-in-cheek, that the biggest ranking factor of all is “awesomeness.”
That’s all well and good. Companies absolutely should create the most awesome websites and online experiences that they can in order to meet the needs of their potential customers.
However, this lack of visibility behind the curtain can be frustrating. What does it mean to be awesome? What makes one seemingly awesome site any better or worse than the dozens of other equally awesome sites? How come what was awesome last week may may not be awesome today?
The answers to these questions aren’t coming from Google, but rather SEO professionals and practitioners who sift through the data and try to make sense of it all.
New Algorithm Changes Coming Fast – And Without Explanation
While the algorithm is always in a state of flux, the latest changes have wreaked unforeseen and somewhat unprecedented havoc on search engine rankings.
Moz, an SEO technology provider, measures changes to the algorithm in their Mozcast. Mozcast is essentially a weather report for the SEO industry; the hotter the temperature, the more volatile the algorithm is.
On a typical day, the Mozcast temperature is 70 degrees. On September 27, the Mozcast hit 111 degrees, and it’s been over 100 degrees seven times during the past month. The average temperature over this stretch is 97 degrees — 27 degrees above normal.
Clearly, something is happening with the algorithm. But it’s not clear what.
What Does This All Mean To You?
As an industrial marketer focused on growing your business, you need to decide how you want to play the SEO game. Do you have time to sift through all the updates and read the latest insider articles in order to keep your company ahead of the latest changes?
You can also work with an SEO agency to take the burden off your shoulders. This seems like a great option; however, it’s important to remember that SEO is just one component of an effective digital marketing strategy. If you’re not actively nurturing leads through effective content marketing and email marketing programs, you are likely going to leave a lot of leads on the table.
You should also keep in mind that many SEO agencies are generalists – they work with clients and customers across all industries. SEO in the manufacturing and industrial space is a unique discipline in and of itself. All the traffic in the world won’t make a difference to your bottom line if the traffic coming your way is worthless — driven by random visitors and a barrage of bots. You want to make sure that the agency you work with can attract high value customers. Quality matters.
Finally, you need to consider whether you want to put all of your eggs in the beguiling basket that is SEO, forever subject to the ever-changing whims of an algorithm with no guarantees of attracting the right buyers.
While Search Engine Optimization is important, you can’t spend your days focused on ranking signals and algorithm changes. Instead, you need to focus on generating real results for your business — in the form of leads, customers and sales. Complementing your SEO strategy with a profile on Thomasnet.com can help you achieve these results and make you less dependent on SEO altogether. All of the traffic on Thomasnet.com is driven by real, verified B2B buyers who are actively searching for products and services from suppliers like you. Plus, pricing and terms are straightforward — an Enhanced Listing is just $49 a month.
Search Engine Optimization is an important piece of the industrial marketing toolkit. However, the constantly changing rules make it difficult to excel without investing a lot of time and resources into the discipline.
At Thomas, we can help you navigate the ever-changing SEO landscape and attract the qualified buyers you need to grow your company. As a Google Certified Partner, our team of dedicated experts have their fingers on the pulse of the algorithm at all times. Even better, they have a proven track record of helping industrial businesses improve their search engine rankings — as well as their results.
Plus, we can help you go beyond the limits of SEO. With a profile on Thomasnet.com, you won’t have to worry about changing ranking rules or wasting money attracting the wrong kinds of visitors. That’s because, thousands of real, verified buyers visit the platform every day to search for new suppliers and products. A profile is the best way to get in front of them all.
Have more questions about SEO, or want to find out how to get in front of verified, active buyers?