Google has announced publicly that they've made major revisions to their search engine in order to create more relevant search results to the public. This isn't a shock to anyone as it's been a long time coming if you were involved with the online industry. This has been reported since the latter part of the prior week but what people should be interested in is how this will affect their relationships with their online marketing firms.
This has been a shortcut (or long standing strategy) that SEO firms would deploy to help quickly increase relevancy and advance ranking. What's not determined is how significantly this change will effect that the rankings of websites that have utilized this strategy. It's my opinion this will still maintain some level of relevancy since "link backs" in their truest form are extremely relevant and very important to the core mission of information aggregation on the internet. Questions that I'll be immediately researching or looking for tangible information on are:
When looking at SEO firms don't be afraid to ask how they are adjusting strategies in order to compensate for this major shift in the SEO industry. If you're a current client don't be suprised if this was a part of your strategy as only up until just a couple weeks ago this was a well implemented strategy by many marketing/SEO firms. Focus on if they used this strategy, what their plan is to immediately remove you from harms way with regard to penalization and how they'll be changing the game plan to ensure your rankings and visibility meet the metrics you've come to expect.
If anyone needs recommendation for a quality SEO firm focused on ethical (white) SEO practices please don't hesitate to reach out to us and we'd be happy to point you in the correct direction.