Search Marketing has been around for a long time now and is considered by many as a mature online marketing channel, including myself.
From the early days for SEO ranking manipulations and archaic directory listing search engines to the game changing Google algorithm – search has come of age.
With many new ranking indicators now real factor in SEO, such as social media indicators, content farms, Google+ etc…
Google is still the dominant market leader with the gains made by Bing not making a massive dent in overall market share for Google and their Adwords platform driving massive amounts of revenue to companies around the globe, from small one man businesses to multinational companies.
Looking at search as a sum of its parts (SEO and PPC), it still provides pretty much the most bang for your buck.
Yes, social media is emerging as a powerful marketing platform, more so from a customer loyalty and retention perspective – but we have yet to see the maturity of this platform and the bedding down of long term revenue generation and proven value generating techniques from social media.
SEO has become a highly competitive and scientific part of online marketing, old black hat spam techniques and regular on-page optimization will no longer cut it in the ever changing world of Google.
SEO practitioners need to continue to move with the change and look at a multitude of factors when trying to improve website rankings.
With these changes have come massive leaps in the systems that analyse data and we now have a wealth of information on ranking metrics, competitors, strategies etc which make search marketing measurable to the nth degree.
We continue to see cpc rates increasing tremendously on sites such as Facebook, while PPC depending on the keyword remains much more cost effective for direct ROI purposes.
When looking at the bigger picture of integrated digital marketing, search marketing still continues to drive ROI and will continue to do so in the near future.