Is Social Media The New SEO? How Content Is Set To Take Over The Race To The Top!

A week or so when I posted my first blog post I wrote: “By the time I publish this post, Google might change ten algorithms in its code, SEO techniques might cease to exist and search engines might become personal”.

Now not meaning to blow my own trumpet or anything :) but it seems there was something somewhat prophetic in my observation.

By “ engines might become personal” I meant that Google could create a personalised search engine for each one of its users, by using information collected from +1, Google + circles etc. Soon afterwards, I read this very interesting article on a Google blog post titled “Make search more secure”.

As I know you are all keen to keep on top of Google developments and changes, I am going to have a look at what exactly was meant by this title. In my humble opinion I very much doubt that their aim is to raise privacy levels, but rather to ensure they keep their currently (very) large chunk of the search engine market safe from competition…

Let us have a look at the post:

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As search becomes an increasingly customized experience, we recognize the growing importance of protecting the personalized search results we deliver. As a result, we’re enhancing our default search experience for signed-in users. Over the next few weeks, many of you will find yourselves redirected to when you’re signed in to your Google Account. This change encrypts your search queries and Google’s results page.

The post continues:

What does this mean for sites that receive clicks from Google search results? When you search from, websites you visit from our organic search listings will still know that you came from Google, but won’t receive information about each individual query…If you choose to click on an ad appearing on our search results page, your browser will continue to send the relevant query over the network to enable advertisers to measure the effectiveness of their campaigns and to improve the ads and offers they present to you.

So what does that mean in one sentence? Unless you run Google Ads you will not be able to see the keyword responsible for your traffic increase. Of course, the excuse “importance of protecting the personalized search results we deliver” is non-existent – if that was the case then they should ban the keyword queries from Google Ads as well – but that would kill their product.

For me, SEO was always a silent PPC competitor, as there are ways to reach high rankings simply through a bit of research on short and long tail keywords. However, what I see here is Google trying to remove one of the most important pieces of information available for SEO companies.

So how do you get the crucial keyword information from now on?

Well you will not be able to – unless you are running Google Ads. In terms of SEO, it is not catastrophic, as I am sure a lot of users will not be logged in their Gmail accounts 24/7 so there will still be sufficient information to plan SEO/PPC campaigns.

However is there a more efficient way that will benefit business’s marketing mix in the long run apart SEO?

Well, if you are not already an avid user then now is the time for you  and your company to really make the most of social media marketing.

Tools such as Twitter, Foursquare, +1, blogging and Facebook help you directly connect with your target audience and their circles (friends or personal networks), but most importantly you will be able to identify the language used, keywords and terminology used for your product or services, topics that concern them in your industry sector, trends and so much more. All of this is invaluable information, that will keep you ahead of the game and help you start building personal relationships with your audience, by directly connecting with them as well as providing content that will add value to your brand and products.

If you are still dubious about obtimising your web site content, then remember that Google just introduced Google dynamic ad. PPC ads will now be displayed based on your content and not selected keywords. Also meta-description will be automatically generated by Google based on your online content.

It appears that SEO methods is no longer guaranteed to increase your site rankins on its own. Instead, content marketing and social networking sites will play a very important role in terms of gaining the edge when it comes to the Google machine…

If you enjoyed the read and found this article useful please +1 it and share it via the social media buttons. You will find this posts also @: . Site still under construction so bear with me :-)

Discuss This Article

Comments: 7

  • Jeremy says:

    I hate to burst your bubble, but personalized results have been around for at least 4 years. In 2007, Google gave SEO’s advice on how to disabled personalization on a search result by appending “&pws=0″ to the query URL (

    The reason personalization has not impacted SEO much is that Google needs to see which sites you click before it starts altering your results. So if you start querying in a new topic, you pretty much see the same results as everyone else. If anything this increases the importance of SEO because what ranks at the topic first tends to get reinforced.

    “It appears that SEO methods is no longer guaranteed to increase your site rankins [sic] on its own.”

    You should be more specific with respect to what you define as “SEO methods” versus not. Most SEO firms I’ve talked to consider themselves responsible for all factors that drive rankings, including i) on-page optimization, ii) authority/promotion/PR (link building), iii) social citations (shares/+1s/likes), and iv) behaviorial metrics (click-through rate on organic, bounce-back rate). In my experience, there are no material factors beyond that list that affect rankings.

    And while it would be nice to think that social will overtake search as the primary method consumers discover point-of-need information or research purchases, we are *super* far from that day. Overweight your marketing budget toward social at your own peril.

    • Yiannis Gedeon says:

      Nice points and thanks for your input.

      SEO traditionally are companies responsible for on-page, off-page and link building. They normally split the process in 3 phases. Lately some of these companies work on increasing social mentions as part of their SEO strategy. What they mean by social mentions is link building and brand mentions through social media with the correct use of keywords and a good management tool (social citations). Social Mentions and link building is a complete different matter from social media management or social networking that I mention in this article.

      As i state above ‘if you plan to stick with SEO and not pay attention to content marketing and social networking sites…’ so here are the specifics you are looking for in what I consider “SEO methods” or if you like, what I do not include on my SEO definition.

      Lastly, while I appreciate your experience in not knowning any other material factors beyond the ones you mention, the last few months if not year, content is _the_ most important factor in terms of SEO. Then social mentions around this content. If people “like” it, google “like” it too.

      You may think we are super far away from the day social media and content marketing will be the new SEO while I test as we speak Google’s dynamic ads (where meta description is modified based on your live content) on BETA version. I see major global brands doing 2 hours marketing presentations on how many “mentions” they have in comparison to their competitors and they do not count their success on keywords, link building or search engine submissions, rather valiable content and how this content can reach their target audience in time via social channels. You know what is the objective of their campaign? The traffic increase of individual pages which in result will increase their brand awareness on an international level.

  • Tanja says:

    IDont even have any information of what this is all about, since I had to leave me name and address,would u like written back and explaining everything to me Please and thank youTanja Schwolow

  • It will be about PeopleRank and Crowdsourcing

  • Patrick says:

    When is the google dynamic ads supposed to go live?

  • Hi Patrick,

    It is on live Beta now (I participate with tests as we speak) and will give my feedback once it is completed. While I do not have your email to notify you please follow me on twitter or LinkedIn and I will make sure to let you know! :-) Sorry I can not be helpful at this time :-(

    I will write a blog about it once I have my conclusions so watch this space to.

    Twitter: @akronsound

  • here you can find more info or even register your interest, you never know. it is available in all countries on a limited beta version .

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