We recently came across a Forbes.com article about how SEO will “… be dead in 2 years” due to Google’s changes in search algorithms. We found this to be strong food for thought. Specifically, would backlinks and other external SEO practices eventually not have an effect on sites’ rankings?
Penguin and Panda algorithm updates have certainly affected search results as well as created a stir with “un-natural links” being identified for some websites. But for the most part, good sites have been spared.
So why exactly is SEO becoming obsolete? I’m not sure it is. I believe there’s just more emphasis on Social Media and strong content than in previous years. The growth of Social sites and users has played a role. Also, too many people have posted fake articles and content solely for rankings.
Google believes that if you have Social links to your content, that it’s likely more authentic. People won’t tweet, pin, facebook, or plus one your content if it’s not relevant. As a result, Google is viewing these social media posts as a barometer in part for validity.
The bottom line is, SEO is and always will be necessary. Your website isn’t going to rank in Google search results unless you have strong, unique content. But you need to be active with social media as well, and your online marketing efforts in general. That’s to say, link building and on-page optimization aren’t enough anymore, but are still relevant.