So, the reference ranking in Yandex will be canceled next year. We already wrote about it here, here and here. In general, we treat the reference ranking well, oddly enough. And being “eternal dissidents”, we believe that it is too early to discount him completely. But the cancellation of Yandex accounting links in the ranking formula, we met, of course, with undisguised pleasure. And that's why.
In recent years, the intellectual threshold for entering the search marketing market has continued to decline. In fact, the exchanges and aggregators have created the opportunity to exist well for a whole layer of specialists who do not have serious competences in web analytics and marketing in general.
The concern of businesses that are used to spending ultra-low budgets for SEO is also understandable. They are worried about the fact of the cancellation of links for the reason that they are just as easy (yes there, let's call things by their right names - free) and there is no alternative comparable to the investments (well, someone might think that not yet - in the hope that soon will find another loophole in the ranking formula, but more on that later).
On the one hand, an increase in the average check on the market is inevitable, because now we will talk about integrated Internet marketing services. One purchase links will no longer be able to do. But on the other hand, you need to understand:
Is business willing to pay more for search marketing?
The answer seems obvious. The idea of business is investing in order to get a result. But it turns out that the Russian SEO market is not so simple. Imagine having introduced state benefits to a specific category of population. For years, people enjoyed these benefits. And now the benefits are canceled - naturally, this causes outrage. Cancellation of reference rankings is perceived as such cancellation of benefits to which everyone is already accustomed. In this case, few people care that the budgets for the purchase of links are gradually reduced to pure venture. For RF requests, for example, buying references has been pointless for a long time: there is no correlation between the budget for the reference mass and the output for all the main high-frequency and highly competitive requests. The extradition on them is frozen.
Interestingly. In recent days, we have received a lot of customer requests, who seem to understand that they need to do something to improve the site, but are not willing to pay for the complex. They want, for example, only content, or only web analytics and setting up sales funnels, or just contextual advertising. The question is: do they really not need work on internal optimization, or optimization of snippets, or A / B testing? They do not want these works in reality or can not increase the budget due to these works?
Konstantin Leonovich from Sape.ru during a discussion on Yandex vs. Links live on Seopult.tv from December 10, uttered a very hypertrophied phrase, the meaning of which boils down to the fact that canceling links is the death of a small business. It is for the very reason that companies spending ultra-low Internet marketing budgets (and the average check for link exchanges and link aggregators is 3-5 thousand rubles) will not increase the budget because they cannot physically do this (business does not generate sufficient revenue).
Yes, indeed, the average check for promotion in the market in the overwhelming majority is very small (we are not talking now about the cost of services of large SEO companies: there, of course, there is a different picture). On average, an absolute majority are accustomed to spend from 3 to 10 thousand rubles on promotion.
What, they moved on such budgets because they could not afford to spend more on promotion? Or because they did not consider it necessary to overpay for an ineffective result? If the first, then yes, it turns out that Yandex will be guilty not only in the abolition of factor accounting from the reference graph, but also in the death of a small business in Russia. Is it nonsense? In a word, they cannot pay and are not willing to pay - these are two huge differences.
Let's stop to admit the obvious: a business that exists only through the purchase of links for 10,000 rubles a month - what is it inherently? This is a business without marketing (unless you consider using a hole in the ranking formula as a normal marketing strategy). What is the real offline value of this business? It is close to zero. So, thank Yandex, such businesses will have to either close or seriously pursue their development.
Obviously, a business is first an investment, and then a profit. That is, first, labor costs (temporary, financial, human), investments in the development and implementation of a marketing strategy, and only then results comparable to investments.
There is a huge temptation now for those who are not accustomed to admitting these facts, to be seduced by the behavioral wrap: cheaper and easier. But no matter how desirable, it’s still scary: cheating behavioral is a black box, to climb into which today means risking your site. Yandex has recognized cheating before that, and in the future, it is not for nothing that it promises tough sanctions for it. It is unlikely that the company Yandex would experiment, without having a clear reason to believe that their search has already reached that degree of perfection in order to distinguish fake users from real ones. The drop in extradition is a cruel but real scenario for cheating behavioral.
Yes, the temptation to find an equally free alternative to links is great. Hence the non-recognition of facts, the denial of the fact that Yandex will nevertheless introduce new rankings, endless questions about what will happen to exchanges and aggregators in the hope that their owners will calm down, provide new services, that someone will come up with another hole in ranking formula, due to which you can exist in the old economy mode. Although on December 5, Yandex stated in black and white in its presentation: without any links at all. It is worth reviewing if there are still doubts. Here is a video from that conference.
Down with pessimism
The question is, is it worth it in these conditions to try to play unfairly at all, hoping that someone will invent another ingenious way of manipulating extradition? Is it worth it, if the trend has long gone towards honest work on improving the site from the user's point of view? It is just a waste of precious time that can be spent on good for the cause. Moods are pessimistic for those representatives of the market who have lost the habit of doing real internet marketing, because on the other side of the scale there is an alternative that we really want to dismiss: web analytics, serious work on the site, usability, content, etc. And this is many times greater financial and labor costs, these are mental efforts and the need to develop your business offline, and, of course, these are the results for a longer period.
With the introduction of new ranking rules, integrated Internet marketing will become the only mainstream way to get traffic from organic output after contextual systems. Everything else is a road to nowhere. Because, in principle, nothing good can be built on a dishonest game. The honest way hardens: it makes you resist, study competitors, analyze, build hypotheses and test them, work.
A normal business engaged in building a marketing strategy and realizing that real results, which are capitalized in the future, are impossible without comparable investments, are ready to invest in what brings profit in the future. But at the same time he must clearly understand what he pays for. In the near future, in the wake of the general interest in integrated Internet marketing, there will be a mass of proposals to conduct web analytics for 3000 rubles and improve usability for 2000. What kind of analytics and usability will this be? All these works are of a more complex level than the one to which the market is used, in which the notion of “Internet marketing” has been replaced by the notion of “reference trading”.
The average check for complex promotion is formed on the basis of labor costs, and this is:
- The primary analysis of the site and the development of instructions for its improvement.
- The work of the programmer, designer and coder to introduce the recommended improvements and change the site structure to increase the relevance of each page (moreover, the work is not one-time, the user interest to the site is constantly evaluated, and based on the monitoring of these statistics services, new hypotheses are proposed, improvements are introduced and again evaluated through A / B testing).
- Collecting semantics by niche (all requests, including ultra-low-frequency), logical distribution of requests across the pages of the site (each page is relevant to a specific group of requests). The structure of semantic relevance is reflected in our document called the “relevance map”. Such cards are created for each client project. Moreover, a relevance map is not a document created once and for all. It is constantly expanding by including new requests.
- Development of a content strategy and its implementation (constant expansion of the portfolio of topics for the company's blog and the weekly creation of high-quality texts, infographics and other content for it).
- Monthly analysis of the results and drawing up a work plan for the next month.
It’s time to take a sober look at the situation: yes, it will be hard for those who have advanced through links, not paying attention to the site’s user characteristics (this does not mean that everything is lost for them, it means that they will be harder than those who did the work over complex site improvement). In the near future, budgets that were concentrated on exchanges and aggregators will be freed up. Most of them, of course, will flow into contextual systems. And the rest - in the agencies that are engaged in integrated Internet marketing (actually engaged, and not just promoted by this request). The market is reborn completely. It will be based primarily on the principles of marketing, which will require comprehensive work on the continuous improvement of the site on all important parameters for users. The vast majority of search engine marketing agencies will target traffic on demand for "integrated internet marketing." But among the first will be those who have already acquired competencies on this front, who can set the best quality standards.
Against the background of all this, the most likely picture of market development is the following: after the cancellation of the reference ranking factor, a period of uncertainty and recession will follow, but then the cost of promotion will inevitably increase. For two reasons: 1) attracting customers via the Internet - today for business the most effective way to get new customers, 2) this will require serious efforts, completely different labor costs, which will result in an increase in the average bill.