Google Instant has been released and there are some people who are afraid that this means the end of SEO. But does it really?
Google Instant connects people to the information they are searching for faster than ever before. As you type into the search box, Google will start showing results instantly. However, it mainly favors big brands. A will bring up Amazon, for example, while N will bring up Netflix and B Bank of America. This is great if the person searching is looking for a big business and for big businesses, but may not be so great for small businesses.
You have to keep in mind though that Google takes a lot of things into account when they show you search results. Google takes into account things like your surfing habits and your location when you search. More than likely, people who search locally will see local small businesses as well as the big businesses. This means that people who normally look at big businesses will most likely see those while those who often shop locally will see all kinds.
Does this make SEO irrelevant? Probably not. While it is true that no two people will be seeing the same page of search results when they use Google search, it's important to remember that Google has been customizing search results for quite a while. Google Instant seems to be an extension of that capability.
It is also important to consider the fact that it is a feature that can be turned off. While many people will probably embrace Google Instant, there will be those who have no interest in it and will continue to do their searches the traditional way.
Businesses should do a search using keywords they think people looking for them would use. This will let them see what pops up and might give a better idea as to what will continue to work and what needs to be changed. Remember that many search results are personalized. While this isn't an exact science, it is something that might help you out. You might have to get to know your customers even better through polls or surveys, but that isn't a bad thing.
Google Instant is starting in the U.S. and a few other countries but will be in many more soon. It will become more important to search marketing and is going to be coming to mobile searches as well. This could increase companies exposure so it is important to make sure that you will show up in results.
Rather than destroying SEO, more than likely, Google Instant will simply change the way that SEO is done. What do you think?