When the internet and search engines were first launched, everybody who would use them would see exactly the same thing. This is no longer true, something that few realize. In fact, every search you perform is a personalized experience. While the generic listings will remain the same, what you will actually see depends on where you are, who you are, and what device you are using. Because of this, a good search engine optimization company (SEO company) will always put a strong focus on personalization when they work for you. So how do they do this?
Your broad geographical location is a very important ranking factor. Google loves to show local results, so the more specific you can be about your location, the better. Take, for instance, the term “football”. If you were to type that in Google.co.uk, you would get results on what Americans would know as soccer. If you were to type that in Google.com, you would get results on what the British would know as rugby. Sometimes, a site does not have a country relevance at all. In that case, you will struggle to be found. Hence, a good SEO company will make sure that you have international SEO tools in place.
As stated earlier, geography is important, and the closer to your actual location you get, the better. It is very important, therefore, that you build a website that is relevant to the specific town or city that you operate in.
Google and Bing both use people’s personal search history when it comes to tailoring their results. This is quite scary, because it feels like Big Brother is watching all of us. Unfortunately, you cannot control other people’s history, but you can influence it to a degree. If, for instance, you engage with them directly through social media, then they are more likely to come across your company in the search engines as well. This is why having a strong social media presence is hugely important. You should also encourage your visitors to like and share your Facebook page, follow your Twitter feed, and +1 your Google+ page. In so doing, you know that you are in their history.
There is a new factor that has a strong impact on search results, which is social connections. Basically, this means that what your potential customers see, depends on what the people they are connect to see. The Google algorithm now essentially believes that the people someone is connect with, act as their personal advisor. This makes sense, because that is how we learn about things offline as well. Again, this is not something you control, but that you can influence through your social media channels. If you get a new like on your Facebook business page, then this has a direct influence on all of the liker’s friends as well. This just goes to show why SEO now goes hand in hand with SMO – social media optimization.