Organic search had been my business since the mid-’90s, so I have seen hundreds of changes. Over time, I have built a response that seems to be working. It is very much similar to the old joke about the two men worrying about running from a hungry bear. One man notes that all he has to do is run faster than his partner. Well, this is my philosophy to succeeding at search. Instead of watching too closely the moves that the search engines make, consider even more critically the moves that your competitors, customers and consumers, in general, are making. Then craft your strategies to beat the competition and meet consumer expectations. Try to stay just a bit ahead of the pack. Then, the bear will get your competitors and not you.
Prediction 3 – Search Will Remain Hard Work
This is another no-brainer, a guaranteed slam-dunk prediction. Search is hard work, and because success is tied to staying ahead of the competition, you must be constantly scanning the marketplace and looking out for what you can do to keep your site ahead of the others. Staying ahead of the competition requires a maniacal attention to the details of site performance and optimization. Today, the optimization must extend well beyond keyword selection and basic on-page optimization into conversion optimization. We can no longer depend for growth on increasing Internet adoption rates to enlarge the potential pool of searchers. Similarly, just look around, and you will see that mobile growth is still there, but for how much longer? For search success, we must look to working not just harder but more efficiently. For example, pages that draw traffic that does not convert must be viewed as sources of lost opportunity to be recaptured.
When all is said and done, there is no beating a sound strategy and flawless tactical execution of the many little things that are recognized contributors to success in organic search and, by extension, to online marketing, in general. Then there will be no need to even look at predictions.