As more and more players enter into the search engine market, the only way to win market share is to innovate; come out with new features, or make your search engine faster. Recently Google did this, when it unveiled Google Instant, showing results as you search, shaving on average 2-3 seconds off of a search.
Though social media is being universally adopted and growing immensely in popularity, it has been relatively untouched by the search world until now. Bing recently announced a deal with Facebook to integrate Facebook’s data into their search algorithm.
Google is similarly introducing more social into its results. Now when you search a specific topic on Google, a link under each result shows how many people have shared the same link. In addition, Google will also show how many updates on Twitter, Myspace, and Facebook have the link in them.
The new feature between Bing and Google may seem similar – however, Bing only shows social results from your friends, whereas Google shows results from the whole web.
So what does this mean for SEO? It means there will be some changes, but nothing earth-shattering. The biggest change is that it gives more relevance to social media, and also makes the search experience more intuitive. It also means that embracing social media, especially “like” pages, all the more important. However, this will impact the SEO industry, but not dramatically. The SEO industry hasn’t been about simply reacting; for one to stay relevant in this industry, you learn to adapt to changes. In addition to adapting, SEO is about making search better and more intuitive. So even with Google’s new search integration, the search will go on.