I‘m currently at that point in my SEO career that I‘m really wondering where I‘m heading. Until now I’ve been so obsessed with Google and Google Search Ranking that I merely forgot about the other search engines and I have absolutely no idea where I’m ranking on Yahoo and MSN.
Yesterday I got really curious on the recent tendencies on where search engine traffic comes from and which search engine is the most popular one. The formula is very simple. Popular Search Engine = tons of traffic which on the other hand requires a lot of SEO Optimization in order to rank well and actually get your fair share of this traffic for your targeted keywords. The thing that really amazed me was my finding from Alexa – the website statistics company – showed up on the search engine reach on both Google, Yahoo and MSN/LIVE which totally made me fall of my chair.
As you can clearly see on the graphic above plotting the search reach tendancies for Google, Yahoo and MSN/LIVE for the last five years we can clearly note that there are some serious, somehow weird, changes that I wasn’t aware of. For example we all know that Google was becoming more and more popular from 2001 to 2006, but nobody knew that from the beginning of this year its loosing grounds to Microsoft Search. The thing is that Microsoft search is both MSN and Live as they are virtually the same search engine but with different names and we can clearly see that if we combine the daily reach of both MSN and LIVE it combines to 1.5 times the reach of Google and that’s really amazing amount of traffic….
It is no secret that I’m getting about 90% of my search engine traffic from Google because I’m optimizing like crazy there and I own the top 10 positions for most of my targeted keywords, but on the other hand I’m ranking quite badly on Yahoo and MSN because I didn’t do anything to help my rankings there.
With those news statistics in hand, I’m really reconsidering the fact that I should at least start making some experiments with Yahoo and MSN/Live to see if I can get my hands on some good traffic or its just another hoax in the search world (which is very hard for any of us to confirm either way due to the lack of good on-hand statistics).
The truth behind my story is kind’a complicated as I’ve always tried to optimize for Google as I believed that Google is the biggest search engine traffic leader and there is merely no point in optimizing for the smaller search engines, but if this happens to be real and there is tons of traffic in MSN/LIVE and Yahoo then this will most definitely be my biggest SEO mistake no to exploit it.
Also the second biggest problem I got is the situation where Google, Yahoo and MSN have their search engine ranking algorithms are quite different one from another and can be considered somehow incompatible which is really odd because all of them are targeting “high quality websites” to be displayed on the top listings. It seems that Google is nowadays more eager to list new fresh content pages, something similar to MSN/LIVE, but Yahoo is keeping its top rankings on well trusted aged domains that showed numerous quality posts in time. In this case it best to have very old domain that had delivered good quality content and is now updated almost daily with fresh content. Unfortunately for me, I don’t have such domains and this would be quite big issue. If my theory is correct, if I override other parameters for quality, I should be able to go-around this age factors, but I’m not really sure if it will work on Yahoo. For Google my experiments prove it works and I always rank quite nicely when I make my effort.
The only thing I can do is to start experimenting with different keyword densities as we all know that Yahoo is quite more sensitive to keyword spamming and see what’s going to happen. This experiment will take approximately few months before it shows any kind of results so .. sit tight and read my blog of updates.