In a recent survey, 90 percent of search marketers stated that Google’s algorithm changes have a significant impact on them, and 90 percent also say that the rise of mobile devices and local area searches are impacting the way they do business.
The survey was part of the SEMPO State of Search Marketing Report 2012 released this week. The survey included about 900 search marketers and was conducted online between March 12 and May 15, 2012. About 64 percent of responders were in the United States, with the remainder in other highly-impacted areas around the globe.
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Marketers Talk About What Affects Them Most
Almost unanimously, respondents agreed that there were two important things that caused them to change the way they handled SEO and other strategies: Google’s algorithm changes and the advent of mobile web apps. This was true whether the respondents worked in a closed environment such as an agency marketing firm or were designated as in-house marketing experts for various businesses. Although there were slight differences in the percentages between these groups, there was definite consensus that these two factors were the most troubling and caused them the most change to their practice.
One thing that definitely affected the way these marketers did business was the introduction of Google’s Panda algorithm update that was launched in February of 2011. Since then, Panda has experienced numerous updates, and just to add to the fun, Google also announced new Penguin updates in April of 2012. Furthermore, Google warns that there is more to come and that marketers can expect more algorithmic changes in the near future.
Agency marketers seemed slightly more worried about mobile web apps, especially local search.
What Else Concerns Marketers?
SEMPO and eConsultancy now estimate the value of the search marketing industry in North America at $22.9 billion for 2012 and $26.8 billion for 2013. It is also clear that marketing is a growing field for businesses, with at least 86 percent of survey responders anticipating an increase in digital marketing budgets. The growth of this field bodes well for marketers who are looking to keep their jobs, but it also means that they will have to be up-to-date on the latest changes which seem to occur faster every year. Marketers who want to remain viable will have to study Google’s announcement and apply these changes to their practices.
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