The entire Internet was a very different place before 1998, and then Google turned up and shook the whole web world to its core.
The explosive rise in power and popularity of Google has come at the inevitable expense of rivals such as MSN, Yahoo and so on, leading to a 2013 where the vast majority of second-place search sites aren’t even factored in by most users. And it’s all for a very good reason too – Google is simply a better site and a better service than any of its rivals, which is why the word itself has become a verb… I Google, we Google, he/she is Googling… and on it goes.
So from a marketing point of view Google can shine through as the Holy Grail to end them all – the world’s consumers are all flocking to a single site through which they can be tapped. And if that wasn’t enough, Google’s market share continues to grow pretty much by the day, so the best is only going to get better over time.
However, with all this power and glory comes a rather serious risk – that of forgetting that there is in fact a world outside the ranks of Google
For those in the world of online business or web marketing of any type, it must be taken onboard that regardless of the general consensus, focusing most or all of your efforts on Google can be a frankly terrible idea. Every single area of business relies on a certain degree of diversity in order to get by, which is not different in the world of the web.
1 – Google Doesn’t Care About you
Make no mistake about it; Google exists for Google and Google alone. It’s a business that’s out to make as much money as possible and doesn’t owe you a red-cent. In addition, you and your business aren’t even Google’s second priority – it’s the searchers themselves that determine every decision Google makes.
Or to put it another way, the good folks over at Google couldn’t care less if your site comes out top in the rankings and makes you a millionaire, or lies on page 76 and results in the death of your business.
What this means therefore is that no matter how much time, money and genuine effort you invest in Google, you aren’t actually building yourself any kind of security of safety net whatsoever. Google is temperamental to say the least and anything but loyal – investing everything you have in Google therefore is really not a good strategy.
2 – Google Only Accounts for 70% of Search Traffic
OK so the word ‘only’ might be used a little loosely here, but to side only with Google is to completely ignore a full 30% of global search traffic – and that’s a hell of a lot of traffic!
They might not be up to the same standard, but sites like Bing and Yahoo do still exist and do direct billions of queries. So the question is; have you ever bothered to try either or both of these in your campaigns or strategies?
If the answer is ‘no’ then you really are changing yourself – there’s a huge pool out there just waiting to be tapped.
3 – Google Breeds Ferocious Competition
Given the fact that Google’s power and reach isn’t what you’d call a secret, you can probably guess what the result is in terms of competition. Yep, almost every internet marketing specialist and business out there today makes Google their first, second and third priorities as everyone vies for the same traffic.
So, what this means is not only a vastly reduced chance of snagging the traffic they’re all after, but also hugely inflated prices if you want to pay Google to help you in your quest. Smaller sums invested in any rivals like Yahoo and Bing have the potential to bring much better rankings and exposure, which might not carry the same oomph and they would in Google, but at least your chances are improved.
4 – Google Evolves… Frequently
There is no other search engine or online marketing platform in the world that moves the goalposts as often or as unpredictably as Google… none! Just as you feel you’ve hit the nail on the head with a top-end ranking after months of hard work and tens of thousands invested, Google pops out another algorithm update and you’re back on page 44.
Will you get an apology? A refund? An explanation? Even any advice on how to make it better? No, nope, never and not a chance.
It’s a sad fact but every second and penny you invest in Google you have to be willing to lose at the snap of a finger.
5 – Google Addiction Breeds Complacency
And to round off, to depend on Google is to turn a blind eye to the more traditional marketing methods that have serves the world faithfully for decades now. Sure you might not see the jump in traffic you’re hoping for overnight, but to completely sidestep tried and trusted tools and strategies is to deal yourself a bum hand for no good reason.
From standard email marketing campaigns to old-school snail mail to social media to cold-calling and all those lovely offline marketing platforms from days of old, it’s all about using diversity to bring in a diverse consumer base and find potentially profitable traffic no matter where it might be hiding.