Join Jordan and Ben for the final episode of 2019 SEO Predictions Week as they dig into how the ongoing integration of Google into competing mobile platforms like IOS are likely to impact SEOs and Digital Marketers in the new year.
Ben: Welcome back to SEO Predictions weeks on the Voices of Search podcast. I’m your host, Benjamin Shapiro, and this week we’ve been publishing an episode every day covering our bold SEO predictions for 2019. But before we get started with our last prediction, I want to remind you that this podcast is brought to you by the marketing team at Searchmetrics. We are an SEO and content marketing platform that helps enterprise scale businesses, monitor their online presence, and make data driven decisions. To support you, our loyal podcast listeners, we’re offering a complimentary digital diagnostic. A member of our digital strategies group will provide you with a consultation that reviews how your website, content, and SEO strategies can be optimized. To schedule your free digital diagnostic, go to searchmetrics.com/diagnostic.
Ben: Okay. Joining us one last time to round out SEO predictions weeks is Jordan Koene who is the lead SEO strategist and the CEO of Searchmetrics Inc. And today we’re going to continue sharing our bold predictions by telling you how we think Google will change its distribution strategy in 2019.
Ben: Here’s the last installment of SEO predictions week with Jordan Koene, CEO of Searchmetrics Inc.
Ben: Jordan, it’s great to have you here for the last day of our SEO predictions. And today, we’re going to talk about the distribution of search. Tell me what you think is going to happen that’s going to be different in 2019 with how Google distributes their search products.
Jordan: Bold prediction here. The reality is that everyone talks about voice, everyone’s talking about how voice is going to be more prevalent, but the bold prediction here is Google will become more integrated on more and more devices. And so that really means a lot of things. That means a lot of different things. Google’s going to play nice with a variety of different companies to become more integrated. This includes traditional manufacturers who are creating IOT based devices, so integrative things, things like refrigerators, washing machines, so forth. It’ll mean that they’ll be playing nice with what will be considered some of their core or closely related competitors. Companies like Microsoft, Amazon, and it will also mean that Google will play nice and become more relevant in what we would consider mainstream type of companies that are more traditional in nature, companies like say retailers like Walmart and others that … They may see them as say customers in a way, advertisers in a way, but being able to play nice with them and create opportunities for those companies.
Ben: So, let’s go into each of those segments one at a time. Let’s start off with the primary competition for Google. You’re essentially saying that Google is going to integrate their search capabilities into Alexa. There’s already a relationship there, but there’s also Apple and Microsoft. How do you expect Google to integrate themselves into the other device manufacturers?
Jordan: It’s really about code and engineering. It’s really about how they develop and create a partnership of ease. And so it’s more about how can I give access to my core strength to companies like Apple? I mean, many of you may recall Apple Maps was pretty much the defacto maps experience for a long time in your iPhone, and it was a real pain because if you really wanted to have any accessibility to Google Maps, you had to go directly to Google Maps app, and that’s the only way you could play with it. So breaking down those barriers by Google creating relationships with those competitors and creating this tunnel between their engineering capabilities and insight and innovation with those companies is really where it’s at.
Jordan: Now what that means for the consumer, very briefly. What that means for the consumer is that it creates an ease of use. It says that when you say, “Hey, Google,” to Alexa, Alexa responds. That sounds pretty novel. That sounds pretty crazy. I know it does. What the prediction here is Google will start to make those kinds of transitions with their competitors because the power of Google search is just so much more superior and so much more beneficial for consumers and users.
Ben: I understand why Alexa would have a relationship with Google because at its core, Amazon is an eCommerce company, right? And when people are asking questions to their smart home device, Amazon doesn’t necessarily have all of the answers. So they need to rely on a third party, and that’s why they already have a relationship with Google. There’s the question of what’s the relationship with Apple, what’s the relationship with Microsoft, and some of the other device manufacturers that are out there? One thing that I’ve noticed is that Google has updated their iOS app. So you can basically daisy chain some of the smart home devices together.
Jordan: Mm-hmm (affirmative).
Ben: Where you can say something along the lines of, “Hey, Siri, ask Google,” blah, blah, blah question. I wonder if the two companies are going to get together and streamline that experience.
Jordan: And this is exactly the point, the focusing exclusively on these core competitors or what we traditionally consider competitors for Google in a sense, every sense the death of Yahoo and really their control of search and their expansion into really other channels of technology. Fundamentally speaking, what we are saying the prediction here is that they’re going to start to build those relationships in tunnels because it really behooves Google more than anybody else to have more data on the use and implications and understanding of the user’s experience behind not only the device but the intention behind that search in that search experience. And so I think really it’s not that all of a sudden all of these things are going to happen overnight. But what we’re saying is that now that we’ve crossed this chasm over the holiday season with all these home hub/portal devices that are now going to sit in your living room and are going to help you video chat and do all these things, now that we’ve kind of crossed this manufacturing device uprising, it’s going to become more important for these companies, the software companies to define ways to get their software relevant in these other devices and in these other experiences that they competitors have.
Ben: My big hope for 2019 and this is somewhat unrelated to Google. This is more of a request for Apple. Is that Apple realizes that the experience of asking a question and your smart home device saying, “You can search the web for that,” and then punting you to a Google search as opposed to just going to Google and giving you the answer. That’s not a good experience. I hope Apple gets it right and just finds a way to work with Google to provide the end consumer the information they’re looking for. That experience to me is so optimal and it’s clearly because Google and Apple consider themselves to be competitors.
Ben: Let’s turn the page a little bit and talk about some of the other devices that Google can be integrating. You mention IOT, the internet of things, what are some other places that you think you’ll see Google and their voice capabilities start popping up?
Jordan: Yeah. So in similar to GitHub or other repositories of code, I really believe that Google’s going to become, and so with other players, so will other companies, but Google will become more accessible to the core code and base line technology to allow traditional companies, manufacturers to better integrate their experience into these devices. We’re talking about washing machines, refrigerators, microwaves. I know all this sounds really ridiculous, even cars. But the reality is Google has already done this, everybody. This is not revolutionary. Think Android. I mean, how many different phone manufacturers across the planet … I think China alone probably has 40 different phone manufacturers that are literally integrated with Android. And so you have to think about that. It’s not like Google has not done this. They’ve done this before, and the idea here is how do these slightly slower developing companies that manufacture hard goods start to integrate this setup technology that Google has available and create more richer experiences in your home.
Ben: So is the experience your thinking, “Hey, Google. Turn on the washing machine,” or is it, “Hey, washing machine. What’s the score of the Giants game.”
Jordan: That’s a really tough question. I want both.
Ben: It does sound cool.
Jordan: Yeah, it does sound cool, right? I mean, laundry has a new whole new meaning now. But no, I think if you could take every single digital display and watch sports on it at any given time, it would make our lives a lot better. I totally agree.
Ben: There are husbands everywhere that are going to spend the entire Sunday just doing the laundry over and over and over again just to be able to watch their team win or lose in fantasy football.
Jordan: This is correct.
Ben: And if it’s anything like your team, it’s likely a loss.
Jordan: That’s so true. So true. So sad.
Jordan: Oh, man.
Ben: So one thing that I’m not sure if this is 2019 or if this is the next decade, but right now the capability for Google to integrate into all of these IOT devices, they’re very much personalized experience. And I wonder when Google’s going to get to the point where you’re going to have a personalized experience with a non-personal device. When am I going to be able to walk into the shopping mall and go say, “Hey, Google. Where’s the best pair of pants for me,” and it gives me direction to my phone, right? Like go to talk to Google as a voice search operating system but not have to have a conversation with my specific device where I can talk to something that is universally accessible?
Jordan: So, you’re talking about that creepy, digital stand at the airport of that lady who gives you information on where to go in the airport? When are we going to get to that?
Ben: I was thinking the Minority Report where it’s just kind of like the bus stop of search devices. But when does it not require me to have my device but I have my watch or something and Google then when I communicate with this knows who I am.
Jordan: Well, this is not a 2019 prediction, but I think fundamentally for something of that nature to work, it would require us as human beings to be chipped. I know that sounds ridiculous, but it’s already happening. There are certain organizations, companies and even countries who are adopting this. But we need some sort of recognizable data set that allows us to know that this is who that person is, and these are their characteristics, traits, desires, wants, and then from there, you could have a whole world around that individual that can provide them with the necessary information or guidance that they need and want. It’s simply too difficult. We are too unique as individuals for there to be an agnostic environment around us that can just tell us and point us where to go. There has to be some sort of data point or trigger point that allows these devices and technologies to guide us in the right direction.
Ben: Yeah. It’s your smartphone in your pocket. I’m not having somebody embed a chip into me. I’m sorry.
Jordan: And it can be that. It could be the devices we have, right? But then invariably, these products or these experiences are only limited to the individuals who have those devices or even more importantly they only have that particular software or operating system or app download, whatever it might be, right? But yes, we’re getting into a world where that will occur. We walk into a shopping mall and literally your device or some screen in front of your eye is going to start telling you where the best deals are, where you can get your food, where the restroom is without having to look at a map or get an ad in the paper on what the best deals are. So that world is coming. It’s just still requires today some personal identifiable data to make it a rich experience.
Ben: So, Jordan, other than watching the Minority Report multiple times, why do you think we’re headed that direction?
Jordan: Yeah, great question, Ben, and if anybody listening here has worked within say one of the more successful mall operators or even some of the companies that operate big event venues like stadiums, these companies are already aggregating this data. They’re already understanding consumers behaviors and where they go and how they operate within these large, complex facilities, and trying to figure out ways to communicate back with those consumers. So this process is already unfolding, and many of these companies are already laying the ground work. What I mean by that is collecting the data and information in order to start to have that kind of conversation with consumers in a much more real time, much more technology device like experience than ever before. So I don’t … This is not a prediction for 2019, but it’s a really, really unique and special topic related to everything we just talked about where Google’s trying to integrate themselves into all these rich, real world life, everyday life experiences.
Ben: Well, the Minority Report is not happening in 2019, but the integration of Google into multiple other devices throughout your home and even potentially with their competitors. Our big, bold prediction is that Google’s going to play nice with some of their competitors to distribute search in your mobile device and throughout your IOT devices in your house.
Ben: And that wraps up SEO predictions week for 2019. Thank you for listening to my conversations with Jordan Koene, the CEO of Searchmetrics Inc. We’d love to continue the conversation with you so if you’re interested in contacting Jordan, you can find a link to his bio in our show notes or you can send him a tweet. His handle is @JTKoene. If you have general marketing questions or you want to talk about this podcast, you can find my contact information in our show notes or you can send me a tweet @BenJShap. If you’re interested in learning more about how to use search data to boost your organic traffic, online visibility, or to gain competitive insights, head over to searchmetrics.com/diagnostic for your complimentary advisory session with our digital strategies team. If you like this podcast, and you want to regular stream of SEO and content marketing insights in your podcast feed, hit the subscribe button in your podcast app and we’ll be back in your feed next week.
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Ben: Okay. That’s it for today, and that’s it for SEO predictions week. But until next time, remember the answers are always in the data.