In 1991 The World Wide Web was launched. As a result, the way humans communicated and connected with each other changed forever. Not only was the way we connect changed, so was the way we shop, searched for products and services and found the closest ice cream shop. Savvy online marketers learned how to use this new platform to reach their target audience faster than ever before. As more people went online they needed a centralized place to “search” for the best solution. As search engines grew, a new form of marketing was born, SEO (Search Engine Optimization).

Over the years we’ve seen the internet grow and change at a rapid rate. SEO has also seen its share of ups and downs. From the many claims of “Death to SEO” in the late 90s and early 2000s to the resurgence over that last two years, SEO has helped thousands of small and mid-size businesses compete and win against the big boys. It’s the even playing field that SEO brings to the table that, in my opinion, has kept it alive and well for so many years. Businesses that have focused on their end users, developed helpful content, and built links the right way have not only seen growth in the search rankings but in their businesses as well. Check out this infographic to see how the search industry has changed over the past 25+ years.

the history of seo

As you can see, search has changed quite a bit since the beginning. The old days of keyword stuffing are long gone and what matters now more than ever is connections. The internet was built on that single premise in the first place. SEO at its core is also about connections. It’s about helping your personas find the content and services you deliver and believe in. While much has changed in search, there are a few things that have remained the same. Focus on creating helpful content, make sure your site is mobile, have a local strategy and build relevant links and you will see SEO success now and in the future!