Please introduce yourself and where you work.
My name is Daniel Foley, I am a search engineer for Assertive Media. We are a London based SEO agency.
How do you think SEO has changed over the last 10 years?
SEO has changed significantly over the last 10 years. As technologies have advanced, Google has adopted more powerful tech to drive advancements in algorithm refinement. SEO has become more and more focused on user experience primarily vs traditional SEO. 10 years ago basic on-site principles such as titles, descriptions, header tags and basic internal linking were enough to rank pages that didn’t have great content, this has changed substantially as Google has shifted away from keyword recognition. The only trait that seems to remain is that links are still a heavily weighted factor regardless of the emphasis on UX.
How did you get introduced to digital marketing, more specifically SEO?
I was introduced to SEO in 2001 after my initial dive into web design. After learning how to publish a website on the internet, it was then all about driving traffic. After learning more about SEO and how it worked the passion drove me away from website design into search marketing.
What are the services you provide to your clients?
We provide specialist ROI driven, User Focused search engine optimisation. We also offer pay per click, conversion optimisation and website development/re-skinning services to optimise websites for the modern web.
What strategy according to you will prevail in 2017 for SEO?
Stop focusing on keywords and focus on search intent. We have seen a substantial shift towards websites that actually cater for target keywords rather than adopting keywords into their content, linking and on-site structure. Links will remain important but how perceived link weight will come into a domain will change. Google has really clamped down on its own link evaluation, primarily linking patterns, acquisition speed, anchor text orientation etc.
What would your advice be to people who are looking to take up digital marketing as a career choice?
Practice it rather than relying on speculation amongst SEO / marketing communities. Learn the fundamental principles of websites, user experience, search intent rather than traditional understanding of title tags, header tags, page layout etc.