For our digital marketing newsletter this month, we’d like to discuss ‘The Theory of Search Relativity: How Much Effort to Put into Web Design and SEO in order to Satisfy Searcher’s Task Accomplishment.’

Through Einstein, we learned that your position and speed in the Universe influence what you observe. A different person, in a different place, moving at a different speed, will make a different observation. So, how does this concept apply to SEO?

In our analogy, Google is the Universe. Consider your website and its search-based rankings. Your ability to capture rankings is relative to the competition in the marketplace. For example, if your website offers a service to a community, and there are no competing websites in your community, then capturing strong keyword rankings would be very easy. You could have a terrible, website, riddled with typos and disorganized navigation, but you still could rank #1. On the other hand, that same website would perform poorly in a highly competitive marketplace. Your ability to capture meaningful search-based rankings is relative to the search environment that you must compete within. If you wish to compete in a small marketplace, you can do well with a mediocre website and mediocre SEO. However, if you’re going to survive in a competitive marketplace, your website must be very special.

Google wishes to display websites that are relevant. To do this, Google considers the user’s experience when they type a search query, or what is now referred as “searcher’s task accomplishment.” So, to remain competitive on Google, your website must satisfy the search query better than your competitor’s websites. This is accomplished through a very complex process, perhaps as complex as Einstein’s “Theory of General Relativity.”

What does “searcher’s task accomplishment” mean, and how do you accomplish it? There are hundreds of parts to this equation, for example:

  • How fast is your website?
  • Does your website look great? When there is competition, appearance means a lot. Ever walk into a dirty grocery store?
  • Does your website provide quality content, clearly explaining what you do?
  • Is your website mobile-friendly?
  • Is your website organized? Can people easily find what they are looking for?
  • What do you offer that is better than your competitor? Pricing, testimonials, results, guarantees, etc.

These and dozens of other factors combine into one simple question—whose website best accommodates “searcher’s task accomplishment?” With that in mind, you can develop an SEO strategy and capture meaningful rankings.

To begin, you need to discover your competitors. Search Google for phrases your customers would use and see which websites consistently come up at the top of Google’s search results. Then study these websites, as your website will need to be better. Have more content, look sharper, be better organized, make it easier to communicate with your company and other features that make your website better. You don’t have to have the best website in the world, SEO is relative. You only need the best website for the marketplace you serve. But you must be willing to put the time and effort into your website to stand out, which is a tall order in a highly competitive marketplace. But in time, your efforts will be rewarded by Google. 

Don’t underestimate your competitors – Achieving greatness across search engines can be extremely complex, as there are many considerations to take into account. For example, your new web design may have some elements that are not SEO-Friendly. We recommend that you review a related article, SEO Friendly Web Design Guidelines to help ensure that your efforts are not in vain.

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