Technology has been on a constant journey of evolution that’s showing no signs of slowing down. When it comes to the internet, the next generation is Web3, and it’s already here. Through the power of Web3, security and control over personal data are handed back to the people, which is a positive step in the right direction. However, with completely new infrastructures on the horizon, there’s going to be a ripple through the SEO community.
Web3 is a decentralized web that uses blockchain technology, which holds up cryptocurrencies, NFTs, dApps, and Defi. Unlike web2, which sees the internet driven by user-created content with zero ownership, Web3 gives direct ownership to every piece of content. Essentially, large companies including Google, Facebook, and Microsoft will have their power stripped from them.
With a focus on ownership, Web3 paves the way for permissionless access to content, peer-to-peer connections, and full transparency on stored data. With a step towards Web3, it’s thought that devastating data breaches and harvesting will decline dramatically.
The elimination of the middleman will take us into a world where governments, organizations, and other entities no longer hold a monopoly. However, it’s going to have implications for SEO that are already starting to appear.
AI and SEO
Artificial intelligence (AI) isn’t new technology, but its uses are becoming much more prevalent. In the Web3 world, AI will pair up with SEO to provide exciting new opportunities. For example, through the use of AI algorithms, SEOs will have the power to analyze unfathomable amounts of search data with the click of a couple of buttons, which will allow businesses to improve their digital efforts.
Voice-enabled assistants have grown in popularity over the last few years, and Web3 will take the technology to new heights. When it comes to SEO, companies will start to focus more on conversational language instead of keywords, as voice search queries utilize full questions and statements. Therefore, to make sure SEOs are prepared, new content should be focused on natural language.
In its current state, web pages are stored on centralized servers, which can make them vulnerable to hackers and other issues. On the other hand, once Web3 sees mass adoption, websites and tools will operate on decentralized blockchains, which means a shift in content optimization for SEOs. For example, as well as traditional web browsers, decentralized directories and search engines will need appeasing.
Traditionally, search engines are built around keyword matching as part of their SERPs algorithm. However, Web3 will bring an end to this because it’ll allow web browsers to understand keywords in the context of wider queries. Essentially, users will find more personalized results through the power of semantic searching.
Users have much more control over platforms in Web3, which is why there will be a shift in focus to creating content tailored to their direct target audience. In most cases, the results a user will find will depend largely on previous actions, input preferences, and location information.
Even though much of this happens already, the way Web3 works means that full trust must be given to businesses to store data. However, using blockchain infrastructures, users will have the power to withdraw information whenever they like.
Depending on which circles you speak to, you’ll hear that Web3 will spell the end for companies like Meta (Facebook) and Google. After all, these businesses rely on ad-based revenue, which won’t happen on Web3.
Even though there’s a small chance that Web3 will bring an end to these enormous businesses, it’s highly unlikely and there’s a long road to go yet. The most likely outcome is that these companies begin to accept the rise of Web3 and work with developers to change their platforms, especially where privacy is concerned.
There’s no denying that Web3 will shake up the SEO world, but there’s no way that it will become obsolete. After all, as long as there are people on the planet, there will always be questions in need of answers.
Just as SEO best practices shift now with evolving technology, the Web3 revolution will be no different. There will be different skills to master, but it’ll just be a case of following news and keeping up to date with new systems. In this regard, SEO will remain exactly the same.
Every new technology has hurdles to overcome, and Web3 has plenty of them. In particular, access to new systems will prevent early adoption because new tech is expensive. Therefore, until prices of Web3 tech drop in line with acceptable pricing, web2 isn’t going anywhere.
As well as this, the next phase of the internet is an idea at the moment, and nothing is guaranteed. Although elements of decentralization are out there, no one can say with 100% certainty what Web3 will look like. For example, there are growing concerns over regulating web activity on Web3, which will be an obvious hurdle to overcome. After all, if the internet was left unchecked, illegal activity would be out of control.
Web3 is certainly more secure than any other infrastructure out there, but that doesn’t mean it’s foolproof, which means data privacy is a concern. For example, with everything stored on a blockchain – no matter how secure it is – there’s always scope for cyber criminals to improve their methods and find a way to break into it.
As it stands, the only way to get ready for Web3 is to sit and wait. SEO is currently focused on web2 infrastructures, which is where it’s going to stay for some time. As long as you’re keeping an eye out for new technology and SEO practices, you’ll never be caught off guard by Web3.
In 2023, Web3 brought along a few new opportunities for SEO, which means experts need to learn about new ways of creating and publishing content. There’s a long way to go until Web3 is the industry standard and it might not ever happen, but that doesn’t mean you shouldn’t be prepared by keeping one eye on the horizon.