There is a strong case to suggest that the way we interact with the internet is, as we speak, making a somewhat dramatic shift. There is a whole lot of ipad love going on these days, not to mention that there are a host of other devices equally designed to promote the use of the app over and above the web browser and it seems that people in their droves are casting aside the traditional browsing experience in favour of this newer option.
Back in August, Wired author Chris Anderson discussed the importance of this shift, saying:
‘Over the past few years, one of the most important shifts in the digital world has been the move from the wide-open Web to semiclosed platforms that use the Internet for transport but not the browser for display.’
(Quote taken from Wired article The Web Is Dead. Long Live the Internet)
‘One of the most important shifts’ he says. Something big is happening and, although Anderson isn’t one of them, there are doom mongers out there predicting that this is the end of the World Wide Web and the death of SEO.
There are benefits to bypassing the web browser and interacting with an application instead. They can be less clunky – a smoother ride around the internet that enables you to access exactly what you want immediately, often straight from your mobile phone without even turning on your computer. And to predict a completely ‘applified’ internet that does not require the Web as a vehicle is to foresee the end of SEO as we know it. After all, applications cannot be read by Google; they are invisible to search engines. But the requirement to search for things, however we choose to do that, will always exist and I don’t think we’re about to give up the Google just yet.
Is this the end of the road for the www?
In an applified world, the big brands currently control the waves. The web is more free, more open and currently still the preferred way to get around the internet. If the Web is losing its dominance, it’s not about to do so any time soon.
Applications provide a great alternative method of interaction with the Internet but there is every chance that they will remain just that – one of the alternatives – albeit growing in popularity, for a long time to come.
Is the writing on the wall for SEO?
This is already a fast paced industry. We move with the times or we fall behind. So assuming there comes a point where we do all but lose the search engines. There will still be content and a need for people to find it. Our profession may one day be called SO rather than SEO but ‘SO’ what? If it comes to it, I’m sure we can master the new vehicle.