The Future of Search Engine Optimization and Search Engine Algorithms

crystal ball SEO’s face a future of nearly insurmountable competition from huge established websites, and a decreased reliance on backlinks.

Search engine optimization professionals enjoy competitive advantages for ranking in the search engine results pages due to years of hands on experience, but experience, grit and force of will cannot always match giant budgets when corporations throw their hats into the SEO arena. There will always be opportunities for those grass roots marketers who do things faster and smarter, and future startups such as the in 5 years will contribute to disrupting the online marketplace, but the average company trying to make money with their web property will be up against daunting odds.

The Algorithm is a capitalist and is heavily reliant (currently) on back links.

Current Ranking Signals

  • 24% Trust/Authority of the Host Domain
  • 22% Link Popularity of the Specific Page
  • 20% Anchor Text of External Links
  • 15% On-Page Keyword Usage
  • 7% Traffic and Click-Through Data
  • 6% Social Graph Metrics
  • 5% Registration and Hosting Data

Search engine algorithms change yearly, and have improved markedly since the 1990’s. Search engines have gotten so much more efficient at discarding low quality websites that most spammers have switched to ethical white hat online marketing tactics. In the near future, the distribution of ranking importance will change to favor larger, established, trusted brand name websites.

Future Ranking Signals

  • 25% Trust/Authority of the Host Domain
  • 24% Traffic and Click-Through Data
  • 20% Social Graph Metrics
  • 12% Link Popularity of the Specific Page
  • 10% Anchor Text of External Links
  • 7% On-Page Keyword Usage
  • 2% Registration and Hosting Data

These ranking variables involved are getting more difficult for small companies, and small operators will have a larger challenge creating search relevance. It’s more difficult to create a successful viral marketing campaign to get mentioned on heavily read blogs for improving your social graph metrics. Brokering text links with carefully crafted anchor text will not only be more difficult but less effective.

Moving a website from nothing to top ten rankings for highly competitive phrases will less of a reality – If can spend 1 million dollars on a social media marketing campaign, there is no way a smaller car operator can match them.

Google claims to be a champion of democracy, but their future search engine may send 75% of all query traffic to big brands.


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19 Responses

  1. To learn SEO tricks you want to join in a good online group and go to some search conferences, search changes too fast.

  2. Your article is as astounding. The clearness in argument is simply spectacular and i think that search engine optimization will undergo massive change in the next few years.

  3. Every-time I see sites that rank well I try to understand how they get long lasting traffic. It seems that brands will keep improving search rankings as smaller properties will shrink.

  4. Thanks for the link building idea, you sparked at thought about SEO from an angle I hadn’t given thought to yet. Now lets see if I can do something with it.

  5. I recently read an article showing all of Google’s patents over the past 10 years, and it seems like they are moving into realtime search, aware of your location with personalized results.

  6. Very interesting way to market on search engines versus facebook. I have a way to automate a couple very powerful methods of getting users by signing up for popular online games such as mafiawars. You can grab emails and user ID’s by groups or pages or wall posts with this program. Then once you have the IDs you can do a friend request to your profile or sudo profile and bypasses the captcha codes.

  7. That is nice to find an SEO site where the blogger knows what they are talking about. Google just has to much of a lead to ever be seriously challenged as a search engine.

  8. In 2008 the future of SEO was social bookmarking sites like Reddit and Digg. Now the online marketing strategy is engagement sites like facebook and twitter.

  9. Anyone know where to find a full list of Google’s search engine advances? I know their technology improves every day, but how much of their research and innovation is never shown to the casual user?

  10. Your comments on the future of SEO looks good, we have been seeing less traffic from the SERP’s and more traffic from social media sources such as facebook. Being a SEM myself, I take the time to read as much about the future of internet marketing as I can.

  11. Nice post speculating about the future of SEO, but we won’t be making any strategic changes anytime soon. Our online marketing strategy is still focused 100% on link building and backlink acquisition.

  12. To begin earning money with your blog, initially use Google Adsense but as your traffic increases, switch to affiliate offers and targeted direct ad sales.

  13. The information about the future of SEO presented is top notch. I’ve been doing some research on online advertising trends and this post answered several questions about where I’ll be putting my ad dollars in 2010.

  14. I like your ruminations about the future of SEO but and think you have some very interesting topics, but I completely disagree and think SES is a great conference. Businesses can get a competitive advantage by attending this search conference.

  15. This is kind of an unconventional question, but have other visitors asked you how get the menu bar to look like you’ve got it? I also have a blog and am really looking to alter around the theme, however am scared to death to mess with it for fear of the search engines punishing me. I am very new to all of this …so i am just not positive exactly how to try to to it all yet. Thanks for any help you can offer here

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