In some ways, it’s too bad that the ancient Romans, Greeks, and Egyptians aren’t still around. With gods that represented everything from the weather to favorite sporting events, they might have had a field day with Google.
One can only imagine how many deities would have been required to make online marketing work… and what sort of rituals or sacrifices might’ve been required.
Of course, if you were to talk to the average business owner or business web designer, they might tell you that a supernatural force is unnecessary because Google already has god-like powers over Internet marketing anyway.
Does it, though? And should it?
There isn’t any disputing that Google certainly does throw its weight around on the Internet. From search engine positioning to social media, there probably isn’t any other company that you rely on as much – or would pray to as often – if you want to see an increase in Internet traffic, online sales, or inbound leads.
And yet, for all of Google’s supernatural strengths, it also has its own moral weaknesses. To help you understand the good and the bad, the riddle in the mystery of the world’s largest search engine, here are a few things you should understand about the virtual Mount Olympus that the engineers at Google have created:
1. Google is mysterious, and almost all-knowing.
While it might not be supernatural, it is almost uncanny the way Google can crawl your site, change its search engine rankings, or even decide to bury your pages altogether in the blink of an eye. And worst of all, just like those old deities, we can never be sure what the exact reasons or motivations are, only look at the broader scheme of things and study the results.
But, for all of its mysteries and vagaries, we are still talking about what largely amounts to a mathematic equation to help searchers find what they’re looking for. You don’t have to know the precise formula to guess the major ingredients. Likewise, you can count on Google to work quickly and comprehensively, but there are still individual parts of the Internet that it overlooks or doesn’t catalog correctly.
2. Google has its own higher powers to worry about.
It’s easy to think the executives and engineers at Google are setting the tone for the entire Internet, but in reality they have their own masters to please – namely searchers and advertisers. In particular, their job is to keep searchers happy (with current, relevant, high-quality results) so that people keep using their site, which in turn leads to more advertising revenue.
Once you come to that realization, it’s easy to understand that what Google does isn’t personal, or even necessarily creative or agenda-driven. What they want, quite simply, is to deliver the best search results for their customers. So, if your site can be one of the best search results, then you’re always going to be moving in the right direction.
3. Google shouldn’t have life-or-death power over your business.
Believe it or not, you can run a successful, profitable business without ever interacting with Google at all. In fact, you can even put together an online marketing plan that doesn’t include search engine optimization or pay-per-click advertising.
Part of this has to do with the fact that there are so many other dependable online marketing outlets to rely on – like social media sites, or e-mail newsletters. Another reason is that the best way to find success on Google is usually to largely ignore it. That is, to build a great, informative business website and simply let the world’s largest search engine find it, because they will.
Granted, Google has a huge amount of weight and power over many parts of the Internet, but that doesn’t mean that mere mortals can’t work with it, or even outside of its sphere of influence. In short, they have as much authority over your business website and online marketing as you give them, so while you should respect its place in the pantheon, be sure to devote some of your time, attention, and tributes elsewhere once in a while.