The History of SEO

Eugene Aronsky & Moshe Zchut

April 14, 2013 at 05:30AM

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Google logo

Search Engine Optimization was not born with the internet; instead it has evolved over time to meet the needs of consumers, businesses, and search engines. SEO is a constantly changing field. There is not one pre-set formula that is guaranteed to work in every situation. It takes time and dedication to develop an effective SEO strategy which will accomplish the goals of the site or business. Over the years, SEO has been in a state of constant change as tactics and strategies have had to be formed that could keep up with search engines and still meet the goals of the SEO.

Early Years of SEO

The internet is a complex invention; it was not created by just one person. Although it seems very commonplace today, it has come about as a collaboration of many different ideas and efforts by computer innovators over the last few decades. SEO appeared on the scene in the early 90’s when search engines began developing ways to organize sites on the internet. Optimization began in 1995 while Yahoo! was in its early stages. It soon became apparent that internet users were going to need a way to sort out the numerous sites that were being registered on the web which was rapidly expanding. When the first appearance of optimizations was formed they looked more like yellow pages where everything was organized alphabetically. But by 1996, keyword density and the age of a site started being factors. By the end of ’96, algorithms were being developed which helped generate the basics for the methods to be used in search engines. Sometime in 1997 Yahoo! was the premier s ite and anyone who wanted internet recognition learned that they had to submit their site to Yahoo! in order to achieve that. This is the year that SEO really took off as far as the public internet goes. Of course, the SEO best practices of 1997 look nothing like what is used today to achieve site rankings. In ’98 and ’99 one of the primary ways to achieve site rank became submission spamming. SEO’s began to use multi-language platforms, word lists and various innovative strategies to achieve their goals as new algorithms were being formed regularly. Once we hit 2000, the SEO world saw a vast change.

The Rise of Google (2000-2008)

In early 2000 the internet began to shift hugely and Google’s PageRank system began to use different algorithms to rank sites. These new algorithms helped to prevent many of the spamming tactics that had been successful earlier. Google’s changes totally revolutionized the way an SEO approached site ranking. The company expanded rapidly and continued to discover ways of organizing and ranking sites. As new algorithms were developed they quickly outdated and overthrew prior strategies. This meant brand new directions once again for search engine optimization. Google soon introduced the bots that would crawl the web and look for certain criteria such as relevant backlinks and keyword density. The trouble was spammers could repeat a keyword a thousand times and become highly ranked almost immediately. Google programmed the bots, or crawlers, to scan sites looking for duplicate content. As Google grew smarter, the SEO had to keep up as well. Google soon relied heavi ly on backlinks which meant if one site had more links than another it would rank higher in the SERPS. SEOs figured that one out and became very innovative at gaining links easily. Spammers once again took advantage of this feature and Google updated the way it evaluated links and sites. This left it to the SEO to ensure that they were not using any black hat methods, and they changed their strategies once again.

The Rise of Social Media (2009 – present)

SEO and Google are still dancing to the ranking song with both making changes to make SERPs and rankings more efficient and more relevant. Once Google got its algorithm together and the SEO learned what was needed, social media came on the scene and changed everything again. Early social networks were niche and did not have much impact on a site’s ranking. But today social media carries a huge impact. In the modern age of high speed communication coupled with mass connectivity, the SEO has developed even more effective strategies which include social media marketing plans. Sites such as Pinterest, Twitter, Facebook, Instagram, StumbleUpon, and LinkedIn have a huge impact on site rank. As the Web 2.0 has become a two way information highway which allows people from all over the world to connect on various levels, the SEO has learned how to use various sites to provide platforms for various elements that are essential to an SEO campaign like unique content and natural backlinks, etc. Presently it’s like SEO and Google are in a constant battle with both sides measuring victories and defeats. One thing is for sure, the SEO has changed strategies over the years, but the goal of increasing site traffic and ROI have remained the same.

from Top Seo Blog http://www.netlz.com/seo-blog/2013/04/14/the-history-of-seo/