- Google Antitrust Law, The Market Cases You Need To Know.
- The snippets presented by Google do not repay the content creators.
- This is how you make content findable – regardless of the marketing budget.
- Tim Suolo, Ahrefs Chief Marketing Officer, explains how they plan to improve the playing field for smaller players.
While Google faces lawmakers with antitrust cases, it continues to make billions from search result ads. Big players invest a lot in professional SEO tools and expertise to find their content on Google. Small businesses, nonprofits, and educational institutions are struggling to get the organic traffic their websites deserve. Today, Ahrefs, an SEO toolset for digital marketers, is releasing a new free product – Ahrefs Webmaster Tools – to make SEO more accessible to website owners and improve the findability of valuable content on Google.
Google’s Antitrust Proceedings: What You Need To Know
Google is facing antitrust issues because of its dominance in web search, digital advertising, and smartphone software. Google makes $ 160 billion a year from search results ads, leaving online businesses struggling to get the free organic traffic their sites deserve.
Stepping into travel antitrust law of 2019
In 2019, Expedia Group Inc. saw its largest revenue decline in 14 years and TripAdvisor Inc. in two years. This is mainly due to the fact that Google added the “Flights” function to the search results for relevant travel inquiries.
Back to 2016: Warner’s downsizing
In 2008, Brian Warner launched CelebrityNetWorth.com to get detailed financial information about celebrities. He hired a team of more than 10 people to research the data, ensure that it was accurate, and publish the research.
In 2016, a Google representative contacted Warner to get permission to scrape his data. Warner declined, but found his data in Google’s recently launched “Featured Snippets”. As a result, CelebrityNetWorth.com’s traffic dropped 65% in one month. This resulted in Warner cutting staff in half.
SERP functions scratch your content with no payback
The snippets presented by Google aim to answer a user’s request immediately. Because users get their answers straight from the search engine, they no longer have to click through pages. However, these features pose a problem for companies that invest heavily in their content.
Google does not produce its own content. The answers for the SERP functions come from existing content on websites like Wikipedia. Google conveniently takes content from publishers and other websites and uses it in their SERP functions.
In 2019, Rand Fishkin published the study, which confirmed that less than half of Google searches now result in a click. This is a problem for content creators as they lose Google traffic and, with it, potential sales.
The budget no longer plays a role: high-quality content is found
Big players invest huge budgets in professional SEO tools and expertise to dominate organic search, making it difficult for small and medium-sized businesses to compete in search results.
Omid Ghiam, Content Marketing Manager at Webflow said:
“In an ideal world, great content would appear at the top of search results. In reality, the lack of basic SEO knowledge makes the quality content unheard of. “
To improve the playing field for content creators, Ahrefs is releasing a free product – Ahrefs Webmaster Tools.
The initiative aims to improve the findability of valuable content from nonprofits, educational institutions, small businesses, and others who cannot yet afford to hire SEO specialists or invest in professional SEO tools. Dmitry Gerasimenko, CEO and founder of Ahrefs, explains:
“Our goal is to simplify the infrastructure of the free and independent web, where everyone has an equal chance of being discovered online. Your competitive advantage should be in the usefulness and quality of the information you produce, not in knowing how to optimize it for search engines. “
How do Ahrefs’ webmaster tools work?
Ahrefs Webmaster Tool (AWT) is a completely free SEO tool that provides website owners with deep and actionable insights to improve their website’s search performance.
AWT searches each verified website for more than 100 technical issues that could affect search performance, highlights the issues and explains how to fix them.
It also shows website owners their backlinks, most linked pages, keyword rankings, and estimated monthly organic search traffic.
To get started, all users need to do is log in. When registering for a free account, users must add and verify ownership of their website (s) through the Google Search Console.
Users are then given access to two tools: Site Audit and Site Explorer.
Site Audit enables users to search their website (s) for 100+ SEO issues that could affect their organic search performance. It also lists the most important problems, how to fix them and the URLs affected.
Site Explorer shows website owners important SEO data including their backlinks, keyword rankings, most linked pages, and more.
This data helps make better SEO and marketing decisions.
“Great content always has to be the starting point. However, a result beyond the first page is not found. Our current SEO strategy has seen us increase traffic by up to 62%, and Ahrefs’ toolset was an integral part of that, ”says Fergus Taylor, SEO specialist at Typeform.
Ahrefs Webmaster Tools gives website owners the data and insights they need to outperform big pocket big players for free.
Tim Soulo is Chief Marketing Officer at Ahrefs. He can be found on Twitter @timsoulo.