There are a lot of predictions made when we start a new year, especially in the world of SEO. I am going to walk through some of the various thoughts that are out there by the experts as well as offer my own predictions. But I am going to do it with a twist: I will use Google and Bing to tell me which "experts" they think we should listen to using their search as a guide.
But first a few caveats.
1. Yahoo uses Bing's back end search technology, so no need to get that opinion twice.
2. Both Google and Bing personalize your searches. I am going to try and avoid this in order to get Bing and Google's most generic search results for my queries by depersonalizing the searches. I am going to do this using Google Chrome's incognito mode functionality along with the "pws=0" search parameter for Google searches.
3. I don't have time to accurately summarize everything I find, so I will be boiling down various opinions to very simple concepts and keep things at a high level.
Now, to come up with the right ways to search for expert opinions on SEO for 2013. Let's try something simple: "SEO predictions for 2013". I was actually sort of surprised, but the top result for both search engines was the same article from a digital marketing agency called imForza.
What's slightly funny about this result is that it is, in large part, mostly a gigantic infographic. So the content of the article is in an image which cannot be indexed or understood easily by a search engine. Incidentally, Techcrunch recently highlighted a company that attempts to help out with this problem: the infographic creation tool Piktochart.
The imForza predictions, summarized:
- Increasing influence of mobile social
- Privacy and tracking will reduce transparency
- Penalties for poor site navigation
- Increasing importance of AuthorRank
- High quality content
- Increased mobility means location-based search results will become more important
- What they are calling "holistic" SEO, where SEO depends on many intersecting factors being aware of each other
A noteworthy outcome of the Bing search was that there were two other results that posted imForza's infographic, providing a summary and analysis of the graphic. Bing also returned 12 search results for me and Google returned the usual 10. Bing has apparently been experimenting with the number of results they return since last summer.
There was only one other article that appeared in both Bing and Google's top results for this search, and it is a quite excellent in-depth survey of various SEOs in Australia by Jason Mun. It is very long but worth the read if you are interested in SEO.
I will summarize the frequency of the most common predictions by type (and offer my own predictions as well) in Part 2 of this post tomorrow.