Humanity’s gradual transformation into a population of pseudo-Cyborgs is making new headway with the introduction of Google Glass. The current media feeding frenzy surrounding the impending launch of this revolutionary device has yet to die down. At our Innovative Evenings Meetup a few weeks ago we were joined by Fabricio Dolan, a product-marketing manager at Google. He presented about disruptive technologies and spoke about the need to adapt, from a marketing standpoint, to these changing new innovations. It goes without saying that Google Glass is one of these “disruptive” technologies. There is no doubt that this innovation will be a game changer in the realms of social media, photography and film, and even privacy (at least for those who choose to invest in a pair of this high-tech headgear). But how will Google Glass change the game of SEO?
It goes without saying that Google’s own search engine will play a principal role in the way that the Google Glass functions. For this reason, it is crucial for businesses to understand the ways in which this new tech accessory will affect SEO, and subsequently, their consumer visibility.
1. Local Search
First and foremost, Google Glass will put a stronger emphasis on local SEO. Users will be able to search for nearby establishments simply through a voice command. For example, if I were walking through an unfamiliar neighbourhood and suddenly got a hankering for coffee, I would be able to ask my Google Glass to locate the nearest (and best) coffee shop. Using their search engine Google will then provide me with local results for coffee shops based on their ranking metrics. One of these ranking influencers are customer reviews. The more positive reviews a coffee shop has (specifically on Google Local), the higher they will rank, and consequently, the more likely I will be to visit their shop. Therefore Google Glass largely calls for location-specific marketing. Taking the initiative to have your business listed on various local directories as well as encouraging customers to rate and review their positive experiences at your establishment are important for Glass success. Really focus on the local value that your company can give to consumers.
2. Social Media (Google+)
As a Google product, your company’s presence on Google+ will play an important role in the success of your brand on Google Glass. Social media presence and popularity are often taken into account in Google’s rankings, and your company’s performance on their own platform will obviously be a primary factor in these rankings. In order to optimize for Google Glass, businesses should focus on cultivating and strengthening their activity on Google+. Concentrating on increasing followers, obtaining +1s, and regularly posting quality content are all great ways to optimize your marketing strategy on this platform, and put you a step ahead of your competitors.
3. Long-Tail Search Queries
The way we write is markedly different from the way we speak. Search queries typically follow a certain written format that consists of brief and fragmented keyword phrases. The way we ask a question on Google search is different from the way we ask another person the same question. Therefore the spoken search format of Google Glass will transform the way search, and search engine optimization is done. Rather than fragmented keywords, users will most likely construct fully worded questions. For example I would most likely ask my Google Glass, “where is the best coffee shop in this area?” as opposed to saying something like “best Toronto coffee shop”, which is more similar to typed search. It will be more difficult to predict how users will vocalize a query in contrast to the way they write them, which will require an extensive growth of SEO initiatives. Therefore, working at optimizing and ranking for longer-tailed keyword phrases will be an important part of getting found on Google Glass.
It seems that SEO for Google Glass will largely surround three areas: geo-location, social media, and vocalized long-tailed search queries. In the same way that marketers had to begin to optimize for mobile, businesses will have to start thinking about how to make their online presence ‘Glass’-friendly. With a very limited viewing space, search queries will yield fewer results. The extensive scrolling capabilities of larger devices will not be available on Google Glass. Therefore it is important for your business to be at the very top of search rankings. Your entire online marketing strategy, from social media, to local search, to keyword optimization, will have to adjust for Google Glass. This being said, the consumer popularity of Google Glass is still unknown. It seems likely that optimization for this device will begin as an initiative for a small niche market, and over time other tech companies will begin coming out with their own versions of the Glass, which will again transform the way SEO is done. It will be interesting to see how (and if) this device integrates itself into society. While it is currently viewed with much apprehension, I can’t help but recall the early skepticism of the Smartphone…
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