Being in the in the SEO industry for quite a while I have seen the industry speed up and grow extremely fast over the last five years and absolutely explode over just the last few years. Recently some are starting to understand that SEO is really a marketing approach and not a science project geared towards just achieving search engine rankings.
It is good that some businesses are starting to realize that this is the right approach that everyone should be taking and shifting their focus, but many are still clueless, dumping hundreds of articles and press releases per month, taking spammy approaches just to fill in the search engine results. What happens to all those companies that have been taking a science project approach and only worrying about rankings when Google and Bing drop the hammer on the SEO bubble? Will it ever happen? Who knows, people used to laugh when they heard the real estate industry would implode. Whos laughing now?
The search engines are clearly changing and I still see businesses everyday taking this horrendous approach to their SEO simply to achieve rankings. Google has come out and has clearly stated that personalized search will be making much more of an impact in the near future. When someone is logged into their Google account personalized search has already started taking shape. You can even read more about how personalized search works directly on Googles official webmaster blog. I think the problem is that most people have a hard time changing and the search engine marketing industry is very fast changing and fast moving industry that can quickly leave people behind if they dont pay attention to what is going on around them. SEO companies pop up over night with inexperienced individuals make shotty promises and performing subpar search engine marketing techniques just adding to that bubble.
As this continues that bubble keeps building and eventually sites like Google are going to drop the hammer on the whole search engine optimization industry. I can see the similarities between the SEO industry and the real estate industry clearly. The greed and the money symbols in some peoples eyes are inflating this industry leading it to its demise. The worst part about it is that many of us professionals are left with a tarnished image from all the bad apples. Too many businesses out there have already been burned leaving it very difficult for the ones that do it right to really get the credibility they deserve and to pass on their experience and industry knowledge to their Clients. I guess with every tool comes abuse it is just unfortunate to see it have gotten to this point.
Eventually this bubble is going to pop, where will you be when it happens? Will you have changed your ways and your techniques to cushion the blow? Or are you going to be scrambling around and trying to find out how to adapt at the 11th hour? It will be too late at that point. Like everything in life, what comes up must come down sooner or later and the search engines are getting ready for a much needed clean up.
This clean up will happen sooner than later piercing through the bubble and showering the industry with some upset individuals and firms. The problem stems from a lack of knowledge and not enough outside the box thinking. Outside the box thinking like how to put together a nice solid link bait campaign and not figuring out how to control the search results with a not so news worthy press release. Google is dropping a very large algorithm change towards the middle of 2010 which I strongly believe could be the first stages of not only speeding up the efficiency but eliminating the trash that makes its way into search results.
This could very well be the very first attempt to shifting peoples focus away from just rankings and shifting it over to simply marketing their business online the right way. The search engine industry is just getting started but it is growing very very quickly. Unfortunately there needs to be a shift in focus and I think we are starting to see that now. Customers don't become customers by bumping into one of your hundred articles that you released in one day. They become customers by trusting online brands over time.