While the vast majority of our blog posts about ‘what Google did next’, tend to focus on their algorithm updates, not everything Google does is about algorithms.
What is Google?
Google at its heart is an information company. But what started as a way to catalogue the internet has, overtime, evolved into owning the internet. In fact, Google started out because the founders wanted to make it easier to search the internet for things. Hence the phrase ‘just Google it.’
Now Google has a finger in almost every aspect of our lives because the more they can own user attention and control advertising, the more money they can make.
So what is Google up to next that might have an impact on your SEO and marketing efforts? And what can you do about it?
1. A drive towards ambient computing.
Google not only has a monopoly on search (77% of all global searches go through Google), they also have a big stake in email (gmail), video platforms (YouTube – the second biggest search engine in the world ) as well as smartphone and device operating systems (Android – the number one mobile OS).
But what does Google’s ambitious drive to ensure that we can’t live our lives without relying on their technology have to do with your marketing efforts?
Well, in order for Google to be involved in every aspect of our life (without us even being aware of it, hence the term ‘ambient computing’), they have to have access to every aspect of our lives. Which is what they’re working towards.
How to take advantage of ambient computing
So how can you hop on Google’s coat tails? One way is by ensuring that your business is accessible from any device.
And the best way to ensure that your business can be found on every device? Create an app.
Not sure if an app is the best use of your time or resources? Consider this. There are over 1.5 billion websites out there, all vying for attention. How do you make yourself stand out from the crowd? By developing an app.
Fun fact – there are 759 times more websites than there are apps, so if you want users to find you, go to a less crowded marketplace.
But what if you already have an app in place? Well, in that case you need to optimise it so that your users can find you more easily. And what technology is on the up and up? Voice search. That’s what. So ensuring that your app is optimised for voice search is essential if you want to be found in the app store.
Oh, and did we mention that Google already places a huge onus on voice search (over 50% of all online searches are voice based) due its home assistant devices? Funny that…
2. More affordable Google products.
If Google wants to make itself indispensable to your life, expect to find more and more Google products dropping in price to make them more affordable for more people.
Only ever used an iPad? You can bet your bottom dollar younger generations know how to navigate a Chromebook. Why? Because they’re affordable and they’re the device of choice for schools because they’re so much cheaper. Meaning that the next generations are going to grow up being more intimately acquainted with Android products than Apple.
And talking of Android devices, Google is clearly a software company, so how do you get your software into the hands of every person on the planet? You make the hardware it runs on affordable. Be that tablets or smartphones.
The more people use Android devices, the more people use Google software. And the more people use Google software, the more data Google can harvest, generating them more money from advertising.
How to take advantage of affordable Google products
So how does this affect you?
Well, if you’re wondering which platform to create your business app on, go Android. They have approximately 85% smartphone market share compared to Apple’s iOS 15%. It’s a no brainer.
3. Google wants to rival Amazon.
In the e-commerce space the biggest player is Amazon, and if your business is an e-commerce business, your number one goal is probably to rival them.
Google is no different.
But they’ve tried to rival Amazon before with Google Shopping, and it was a drop in the ocean in comparison, completely ineffective. We are all preconditioned to buy from Amazon after all.
So what can Google do about this?
Well, seeing as Google is a software company, they’ll probably regroup and target Amazon by focusing their efforts on helping other people create e-commerce sites that can rival Amazon.
You can probably expect in the future to see Google acquire an e-commerce platform such as Shopify.
How to take advantage of Google’s ecommerce bids
But what does that mean for you and your SEO efforts?
Well, if you sell anything online, in particular on Amazon, make sure you don’t put all your eggs in one basket and retail exclusively through them. Ensure you establish your own e=commerce website and make sure your SEO efforts are driving traffic to that site as well as your other marketplaces.
Because come the day Google makes their e-commerce move, you might want to consider joining them on the platform they buy. It makes sense after all – if users are going to search Google to find you, why would Google list you if you’re not with them?
So what does Google’s ambitious plans mean for your small business?
Essentially, what we’re saying is your business needs to be adaptable, because the big players you rely on are adapting to survive too.
One way you can stay ahead of your competition is by adapting first. So rather than getting cross that Google is switching up how they do business and disrupting how you do business, accept their changes, be agile and keep on winning.
Because whilst you’re ahead, your competition isn’t.