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Personalization and Universal Search Engine Optimization (Part 2 of 4)

Optimization for Personalized Universal Search

Now as a flashback to Part 1 of this article, consider the fact that Google is going to incorporate personalized search into its Universal Search. With this in mind, the following strategies will be key when optimizing your site for search:

1. Be Everywhere Your Audience’s Eyeballs Are

It is important to make sure you have a strong presence wherever your audience is. Here are some tactics to consider:

Using the Long Tail of Search

By implementing the long tail strategy, you will make sure that you are targeting the majority of possible phrases that your audience might use to search for your products and services. Because it is usually easier to get higher rankings for the long tail keywords, this strategy will ensure that you reach a large number of diverse audiences.

By gaining high ranking and clicks for a large number of keyword phrases, you will have an opportunity to influence the future results of more general queries for these long tail visitors due to the personalization effect.

Latent Semantic Indexing (LSI)

In order to provide more accurate results based on the searchers’ intents, search engines are using LSI technologies. By keeping LSI concepts in mind when doing keyword research and writing content, website owners can help search engines understand their site more accurately and return their site as the relevant result. This will increase the click-through rate for your search listings, which in turn helps listings in the long term in a personalized search world. Furthermore, LSI will help you rank high for a wider variety of keyword phrases which can help expand your reach.

Adding Images and Videos to the Mix

Even though optimizing images and videos for search engines (by selecting the right file name, size and format) has been a recognized best practice from the early days of SEO, images and videos still tend to be ignored during the optimization process.

With the presence of Google Universal Search and the growth of social media and popularity of programs such as YouTube and Flickr, not only is overlooking the optimization of images and videos not an option anymore but you also have to take a proactive approach towards marketing these media.

Communicating with Your Audience through Blogs

In addition to providing the tools and opportunity to communicate with your audience directly, blogs help you generate valuable keyword-rich content for your site. By keeping your blog interesting, interactive and informative, you can attract new visitors and keep the current ones engaged and coming back to you.

As Google incorporates its blog search into its Universal Search, blogs will be even more important in the years to come.

Google Local

Google local/maps was among the first verticals which was incorporated to the Google SERPs. Given the fact that results from local search are usually placed on top of the organic results, it is vital for companies with a local presence to optimize their listings in Google Local to make sure they find their way to the top of the search engine results.

Google News

Similar to Google Local results, contents on Google News also find their way to the top of the search engine. So it is important for organizations to make sure their newsworthy content and press releases are optimized and distributed so that they would reach search engines’ large audience.

Viral Campaigns

It is crucial to put your creative hat on and come up with viral campaign ideas that transcend your reach from your current visitors to new audience. Social media and user generated content are great ways to generate hype, word of mouth, brand awareness, back links and targeted traffic.

A successful viral campaign can have a huge reach and can guarantee your success in a personalized search environment.

So you’ve reached the top of the search listings – now you want to make sure your audience actually visits your site. Stay tuned for Part 3, when we’ll talk about strategies to increase your click-through rate.