I met Andre Alpar from AKM3 while I was in Germany last year as part of the Euro 2012 State of Search Roadshow. Andre is certainly a busy guy, he has a English podcast, is one Partner of AKM3 and also has an online cigar store. I asked Andre (remotely) about what he thought 2013 means for search.
Looking back at 2012, what has been the major change in SEO that you have experienced?
Two things were very easy to observe. One is internationalization – many of our clients are active in many countries. That made us, as an agency, diversify, so we can deliver high-quality content and link marketing campaigns in 20 countries now. Another major change was a very strong shift to quality which came through Panda and Penguin, both being massive updates.
How were you affected by these updates?
In simple terms, Panda pushed the level for onpage and Penguin for offpage requirements.
I hope that more and more real brands will start to do SEO. Also, with Google+ local pages there are big opportunities for small enterprises. I really hope that they will make use of those.
What do you think will happen with Facebook/Instagram and Pinterest in 2013?
My guess is that there will soon be an alternative to adsense by Facebook. That would be an enrichment for monetization.
How important do you think social signals will be in 2013?
They will become more important but still a whole lot less important than links.
Has “content marketing” been the buzz word in the German search market similar to the development we saw in the UK?
A term used more widely in Germany is link marketing but I think it means the same thing: Setting up great content that will then really earn and attract links as well as social signals and then getting people to see this content. I guess that’s pretty much what content marketing stands for, right?
What has been the “buzz word” for 2012 in the German search market and what will it be in 2013?
Definitely “WDF*IDF” – it is kind of the new keyword density. WDF stands for “within document frequency” and IDF for “inverse document frequency. There is a whole new generation of SEO tools in Germany to help deal with it. This guy (http://www.karlkratz.de/onlinemarketing-blog/seo-keyword-density/) kicked off the whole discussion.
Will it now be easier to show the value of SEO/Social?
It is still too intransparent, I am afraid.
Will you be attending any search events this year? Will there be more search events in Germany than last year?
I am host of the Berlin-based online marketing conference OMCap (http://www.omcap.de) so I have a strong focus on that. Organizing conferences with 500+ participants is a lot (!) of work but also a lot of fun.