Dear SEOs and businesses: I've got some terrible and wonderful news. It's only going to get tougher out there. The fun and exciting ride of authorship is about to come to a screeching halt – and in this piece, I'll explain exactly why.
This winter was especially cold for authors. Around mid-December, authorship snippets and author photos began disappearing from Google. Not entirely, mind you – but by a significant amount.
Shocked as the industry acted, it was a culling foretold by Google's grand wizard of search, Matt Cutts at Las Vegas PubCon.
With such a provocative headline, you're probably skeptical and wondering if you're about to be subjected to some tacky controversial link bait disguised as a misinformed hate-on for SEO.
This post is not intended to be a heavy-handed criticism of SEO as a practice, nor is it intended to say that all SEOs must become marketers, or that *deep breath* "SEO is dead" *enormous sigh*.
Instead, I hope to highlight why those SEOs and agencies who're trying to pivot into more of a marketer's role are failing to do so.
It’s been sort of fun to watch the coming-of-age for digital marketers as they step into the wild west of content creation. It’s inspiring to see how some companies have stepped up to the plate and adapted, becoming content powerhouses. Then again, it’s also concerning to see how many people have brought bizarre beliefs and bad habits into the mix.
Here are some things I hope to see marketers embrace as the journey continues:
Google Glass – mega-dorky misfire, or game-changing tech? Ever since Google announced the project and started pumping out promo videos, controversy has surrounded the geeky goggles, from legal concerns to famous CEOs hilariously calling for a swift punch in the face for anyone caught wearing them.
The Simpsons even gave the technology a thinly-veiled parody, highlighting some of the uneasiness that admittedly, I also have with the product. The thought of a bunch of people sitting in a room talking to their glasses or fondling the sides of them is nearly as tragic as what we have now… 25 bowed heads all worshipping at the altar of their smart phones.
SEOs are a speculative bunch. In fact, spend time reading too many SEO blogs and you may be led to believe that SEOs actually like to speculate more than they like to do SEO. So naturally, you may be expecting this post to be full of… well, speculation. What will 2014 bring? How might the great mysteries of Google Hummingbird change the landscape of local SEO? What factors will be important?
But I'm going to keep this post free of wild guesses and focus on common sense, highlighting a key areas worth taking note of for the coming year and giving a few ideas as to how emerging trends should factor into your strategy.
So come on – let's stare into the majestic double-rainbow of local SEO and ask what it all means.