digital marketing
By Carrie-ann | Jul 27, 2023 | SEO

How Organic Search Engine Optimisation is Changing

If I had a penny for every time someone told me that search engine optimisation (SEO) was dead, I would be drowning in pennies.

Yes, pay-per-click (PPC) advertising can be a powerful tool, and yes, AI technology has the potential to completely revolutionise everything in the digital space.

But in order to drive success online in the future, you need to ensure that your optimisation expert understands organic search optimisation (OSO).

The Changing Face of Search

Let’s start by going back to basics for a moment.

Small businesses drive growth by acquiring customers, not by acquiring rankings and traffic. This means that search optimisation professionals need to understand how individuals become customers, and clearly, visibility plays a huge role here, which is where many of the traditional SEO tactics have come into their own.

But many SEO professionals have been left wondering whether traffic is going to fall off a cliff by Google’s Search Generative Experience (SGE).

The answer is: yes, if they don’t adapt!

Essentially SGE leverages generative AI technology in order to provide additional contextual information for searches. Google has said that SGE ‘can unlock entirely new types of questions […] and transform the way information is organised, to help you sort through and make sense of what’s out there.’ [1]

So, it’s clear that search is evolving.

And it means that SEO professionals within businesses also need to think about how to nurture demand and how to effectively capitalise on that demand.

SEO is no longer just a single-channel strategy and driving meaningful success will require a multi-channel approach.

Now, it’s very easy for all digital professionals to get a bit stuck in their ways, and there will be SEOs out there who will resist integrating YouTube and TikTok approaches into a wider strategy. But this perspective is going to limit the amount of success they are going to be able to create for their brands.

So, all small business owners need to ensure that their SEO team understands and is willing to implement a range of new strategies shaped to leverage the potential that lies within a developing search landscape.

Crucially, I’m certainly not saying that all SEOs should be content creation experts here, however, I am saying that it will be necessary for skill sets to expand in order to continue making an impact in an organic search landscape that is constantly evolving.

Yes, that’s right: SEO is getting bigger.

Optimising for Google Perspectives

While the vast majority of today’s SEO uses a keyword-first approach, Google Perspectives [2], which is rolling out in US English search results right now and sits below Top Stories, highlights that the search giant actively favours content that provides fresh points of view that are specifically tailored for individuals.

This means that, right now, your SEO team should be looking beyond traditional SEO tactics and also ensure that:

– Content is unique and doesn’t just rehash content that already exists somewhere online
– Ensure content has a purpose and a solid value proposition
– User and third-party reviews are highlighted
– Content includes a variety of points of view

Each of these approaches can have a hugely positive impact, particularly when it comes to developing your online presence into a space that inspires trust, encourages consumer loyalty, and drives conversion.

Importantly, consumers are increasingly looking for more dynamic spaces online and with the help of a solid SEO strategy that is shaped with the future in mind, your small business can deliver precisely what your audience is looking for without needing to drastically increase your digital spend.

The key is to have a strong team on your side with both the skills and the vision to help you succeed.

The Evolving Role of the SEO Expert

While it can be tempting to think that social teams will need to start picking up some SEO skills, the reality is that they simply don’t have the time to add keyword research onto their already huge list of tasks.

As such, SEO professionals will need to continue identifying target keywords and phrases whilst also understanding how to optimise social content for discovery, visibility, and clicks.

The good news is that the task at hand isn’t necessarily as overwhelming as it initially appears. After all, great SEOs already know how search engine algorithms work. These fundamentals aren’t going to change; we’re just moving towards omnichannel experiences becoming the norm.

What does this mean in practice? Well, as well as asking for optimised written content, great SEO teams will simultaneously ask for things like YouTube shorts and TikTok videos in order to maximise search visibility.

From SEO to OSO

While the title ‘SEO’ isn’t going anywhere, it can be helpful for small business owners to instead work on building a team with an organic search optimisation (OSO) mindset.

OSO teams will focus on boosting organic search across a selection of key platforms and really lean into the myriad opportunities there now are to secure solid ranking positions. Think beyond just the first search engine results page (SERP) towards platforms like YouTube, Reels, TikTok, Watch, Perspectives, Discovery, and SGE.

Building a Future-Proofed SEO Team

As a small business owner, driving growth is the key to your survival in highly competitive marketplaces. So, you need to ensure that whoever is handling your SEO has the upgraded skills required to help you to stand out from the crowd.

In practice, this means working with people who understand how to identify new optimisation opportunities across different platforms, which will help you to ensure that you’re always on the front foot when it comes to maximising your online visibility.

While there is no denying that this has been a somewhat forthright article, I hope that it has encouraged a sense of vitality and possibility, rather than overwhelm and fear. Yes, the SEO landscape is changing rapidly, but the important takeaway here is that it’s only going to get bigger and better. So, go and chase those opportunities because they have the potential to transform the future of your business for the better.