This remarkable quotation comes from an elderly lady who begins practically all her online activities — weather forecast, online shopping, hotel booking, rail connections — on the search engine Google.
The online generation can only shrug its shoulders at such a statement. For the weather forecast, they ask Alexa, while a specific app exists for train services. For travel destinations, they simply execute a hashtag search on Instagram and online shopping begins at Amazon. How we search has massively changed in recent years — and it will change further still!
Yesterday Google Ads was popular, today we use Amazon SEO. And tomorrow?
Nowadays around 60% of users start their product researches on Amazon — whether or not they are going to buy the product later. Amazon has been an effective search engine for a long time, with its own universe of SEO and advertising opportunities! Items that are in demand and selling well will be presented more prominently on Amazon, leading in turn to more sales... a cycle that we can influence.
Previously it was enough to ensure that your own website was fit for Google searches and to use Google Ads to attract traffic to the site. However, today there is also a need to optimise the product’s appearance on Amazon. The objective is clear: to get on the first page of the search engine result page — preferably in the Buy Box at the top! Keyword-optimised product copy, catchy product descriptions, positive customer reviews, and additional information in the form of A+ pages are all important ways to achieve top ranking. With the product’s presence fully optimised, sales can be stimulated with pay-per-click ads.
Putting effort into Amazon SEO today can mean increased sales tomorrow. But what about the day after tomorrow?
Pinterest is now ready and waiting with its paid ads, while Instagram aims to expand its shopping functions. This will further change our search and shopping behaviour. But the biggest developments are being driven by agreeable female voices: Siri and Alexa.
Alexa, why should I bother typing?
We ask a question: the search engine responds. What might simply save us the trouble of typing at first glance actually results in queries formulated in a completely different way. Instead of entering individual terms into a search mask, we ask complete questions.
This also has implications for how we must design our web pages and advertising copy. The search engine will prefer entries that provide exact answers when looking for language. So, providing answers to questions in your online copy will give you a clear advantage!
But that‘s not the only big change. Today we imagine search results as a list. On a PC appear ten results: the list that users see on a mobile device is even shorter. But how many search results do Alexa and Siri read aloud? Three? Or just one? And just how many do users actually want to hear?
This will, in turn, depend on their age, the time available to them and the habits they have developed while using the internet. One thing is clear, however: for digital natives and the online generation the classic Google search process is no longer the measure of all things!
“I don’t have the Internet, I just Google.”