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Is this what you want? :: Optimising for the future of search online

If you’re a regular Google user you may have noticed more and more vertical search results entering the ‘regular’ results page. These take the form of results from Google’s library project, YouTube Videos, Newspaper sites, and the list goes on. This is part of Google rolling out Universal search just over a year ago which is aimed at getting you the best results (or so they say… and so they have always said).

A lot of people still think there is just one search in Google. You go to the site, put in what you want and results come up. But there are actually a good number of vertical searches that refine either the type of information you’re looking for or the media it’s presented in. For example; Blog Search, Book Search, Catalogs, Code Search, Directory, Finance, Images, Local/Maps, News, Patent Search, Product Search, Scholar, Video, Web Search.

Many of you small business owners will probably have noticed one of these searches, in particular, the listings on Google Maps. Just as there is an algorithm that determines who gets the top spot in search, there is an algorithm that determines who gets the A, B, or C listing in Google Maps. This is the same for all vertical search arenas. 

So what does this mean for the future of search engine marketing your business online?

The most important thing for you to consider then is how you position yourself among the growing results and choices for people to click on. For example, if you don’t have a really smart keyword strategy you’ll end up lost in the results. 

A recent study in the field of search behavior has shown that when people make a generic search for something where the intention isn’t clear, so for example a search for “Golf balls” as opposed to “Buy golf balls” they’re actually more likely to click on results from the image, video search or news search.

What this demonstrates is the absolute necessity for a keyword strategy that not only takes into account all types of search but is making reference to user behavior. Still, want to be No.1 for “Golf balls”?

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