Outside the Bot: Blended Search Strategy — SEM Synergy Extras
I can always count on Twitter for something to tickle my fancy. Yesterday @kennyhyder put a smile on my face by sharing a video that satisfies my infatuation with robots and getting jiggy with it:
This pup takes commands very seriously!
CC BY 2.0
I think we can all agree that robots are the coolest. Now that I think about it, I think they’re likeable for a lot the same reasons as puppies. They’re smart, but a little bit dumb, in an endearing kind of way. They’re super cute, which is nifty considering you can almost see yourself in them. And they exist to do your bidding — sit, do a jig, pour me a drink. What? Your dog can’t do that? It’s time to learn some new tricks, pooch! [The big difference is you can't cuddle robots. If they ever make a cuddly robot, I'm doomed. —Susan]
But seriously, robots are awesome and all, but there’s a reason it’s called “artificial” intelligence. Certainly we rely on technology; not only does our industry optimize the land brought to us via wires and tubes, but we also use technological tools to get these jobs done. But with our heads down in tech-ware, both hard and soft, we may sometimes need a reminder to come up for air. Take a breather with me and consider an area of search where chips and codes are no replacement for squishy gray matter.
SERP-Specific Evaluations for Blended Search Strategy
Today’s SEM Synergy features an eye-opening interview with the SEO Dojo’s David Harry. Dave explains the pressing need for a blended search strategy as Universal Search results are now displayed for 25 percent of Google search queries. That means a quarter of the time, SEOs are missing out on SERP real estate if blogs, videos, images, news, social and other blended search categories aren’t considered.
Dave suggests a “SERP-out” approach for developing a blended search strategy:
Just like we’ve always looked at the page when we had the ten links, now we’ve got so many more things. […] Instead of looking at your tool that’s telling you my rankings are here and I’m ranked sixth and whatever, if you’re not actually visiting the search result page and looking at the make-up of it, the actual real estate — [for instance,] there’s a big 10-box of e-comm here — well, your six is so far below the fold that it’s really lost value.
And you could be sitting in third place and if something of a blended or Universal pops up then once again it’s pushing your third place ranking down to fourth — well, [the tool] still says third but you’re still below the fold so you’ve lost it. So [for a SERP-out approach] you’re looking at the actual SERP, looking at the real estate, where it’s being assigned and how they’re doing it.
Tools and technology are of course the meat and potatoes of the business we’re in, but as SEOs we’re offering our clients more than that. We’re offering the brain power that can visualize a strategy that works in a specific SERP environment as well as the ability to execute it and power some necessary tools to simplify the process along the way.
In fact, just when you thought it wasn’t possible, it turns out we’re even cooler than robots!