Search Remains Marketer’s Favourite Channel

7 May 2015 | | Search Engine Optimisation

Marketers rate search engine optimisation as the best channel for return on investment, but we can’t be complacent as search is constantly changing, most recently through Google’s new algorithm update favouring mobile-optimised sites.

‘Mobilegeddon’ was the rather dramatic term doing the rounds with digital specialists last month as Google launched a major update to its search algorithm, favouring mobile optimised sites in results rankings.

The change, which rolled out on 21 April, has huge implications for all dental practices that depend on search engine optimisation (SEO) to attract new patients and drive their business. Put simply, sites risk falling sharply down the rankings if they fail to meet Google’s ‘mobile-friendly’ criteria.

It is too early to know the full impact of the algorithm change, but initial research suggests it will have far-reaching consequences for a huge range of practices.

“With mobile there has been a real lack of investment to date and that needs to change. Hopefully this [algorithm update] will help to spur that”- Peter Fitzgerald, Google

Google has justified the change by noting that a rising proportion of searches are taking place on mobile, with the figure surpassing 50% towards the end of last year.

“I remember about 10 years ago, a lot of businesses were struggling to invest in a really strong e-commerce website,” he says. “Among retailers there was an attitude of ‘I’m not sure if this investment is going to pay off’. With mobile there has [also] been a real lack of investment to date and that needs to change. Hopefully this [algorithm update] will help to spur that.”

Despite the upheaval caused by ‘mobilegeddon’, search remains an essential facet of most digital marketing strategies and a tool upon which marketers rely to drive return on investment (ROI).

A report by Econsultancy, published in March, found that marketers regard SEO as the best channel for delivering ROI, while paid search was considered the third most effective behind email marketing. This preference is largely due to search’s role as a lead generation tool that allows marketers to track the impact of their spend on online traffic and conversions.

Google’s search algorithm update favours mobile-optimised sites in results rankings and that will have big implications for dental practices and their website’s rankings.

However SEO should not be conducted in isolation for maximum effect. Recent research claims that campaigns that integrate search and social are more effective at driving ROI than search tactics deployed in isolation. It states, for example, that search and social campaigns achieve 26% more revenue per click than search-only campaigns and that advertisers enjoy 68% higher revenue per conversion from joint campaigns.

If you would like further information about SEO, Social Media and the effects of ‘mobilegeddon’ speak to a member of our team on 01202 677 277 who will be happy to help you.

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