It’s no secret that accomplishing good SEO is a continuing challenge. Google, in an effort to create a more interesting, authentic, and “truthful” internet, keeps throwing new wrenches into its own algorithm in order to thwart manipulation. What this has meant for websites is that what worked amazingly well as SEO three years ago may well get your site penalized now – or completely blown out of the water.
In the words of a famous fictional character, “constant vigilance” is what is needed to win the SEO game. As many an unfortunate web site owner has learned, sadly, this is not hyperbole.
Which is why it made news headlines when this month Google posted this listing for a Program Manager, Search Engine Optimization in the career section on its website, listing the following as responsibilities:
- Architect, design, develop and maintain innovative, engaging and informative sites for a worldwide audience.
- Maintain and develop the web code to ensure quality, content and readability by search engines.
- Keep pace with SEO, search engine and internet marketing industry trends and developments and report changes as needed.
- Advise, collaborate with, and synthesize feedback from Marketing, Product and Engineering partners to push for technical SEO best practices.
There are a number of theories that can be made as to why Google is seeking its own SEO specialist. Some posit that Google finds its own algorithm a challenge in terms of driving organic traffic to its own internet properties.
More cynical people have speculated that Google is merely doing a bit of PR here. If they advertise for an SEO expert, ergo, that must mean that their own websites are subject to the same rules as everyone else. Google dodged an antitrust investigation in 2013, but, like regulators in the EU, some staff at the the U.S. Federal Trade Commission have recently recommended charging Google with the same offenses. The FTC would especially like to know how Google manages its Android mobile-operating system.
It’s also possible that Google wants to do more in-depth research on how SEO professionals manipulate Google’s search results. They will hire a professional in order to keep their knowledge as current as possible – to head trouble off at the pass, so to speak.
Obviously, there are a number of ideas of what could be going on with Google. Everyone enjoys a good conspiracy theory, after all. Ultimately, however, it won’t matter for those of us on the frontlines of everyday search engine skirmishes. Good SEO professionals already have an excellent idea of what Google wants from them – the company has stated its goals over and over. The problem is, ranking high in Google searches requires work and creativity consistently over time. Is your business ready to make that commitment for long-term search engine presence?