GDPR Basics and Impact on the SEO World, Part 1

Technology has impacted the online marketing world in numerous ways throughout the decades, and one prominent theme here within recent years is tracking. Advances in AI have allowed for high levels of tracking within areas like ads and marketing, but this has also led to concerns about privacy and whether users have consented to bring tracked.

At SEO Werkz, we’re here to help with numerous SEO areas, from on-site optimization to link building, keyword density research and more. You may not have realized it, but these kinds of privacy areas have made their way into themes that may impact your SEO efforts; one important element here is the GDPR, or General Data Protection Regulation. This two-part blog series will go over exactly what GDPR is, plus how it impacts the SEO world – including several positive impacts this development has had on search engine optimization and related areas.

GDPR Basics and Broad Impact

GDPR refers to a set of regulations that went into effect on May 25, 2018. While this law technically only applies to the European Union (EU), the simple size of this area and economy means it’s had a major impact around the world.

GDPR requires that online users explicitly opt into any form of online ad tracking. It also requires they be given a choice about how they’re tracked, if they consent to this. This sort of thing has a potentially massive impact across numerous forms of marketing – but it actually has shown several benefits to those in the SEO world. Our next several sections will dig into many of these.

Budgeting Themes

For starters, GDPR had an instant impact on SEO budgeting, especially for larger companies. In particular, it caused many such companies to rethink their paid advertising budget, which is generally locked at the start of a given year. Now, many companies are holding larger funds in reserve instead of earmarking them for paid campaigns, which opens up many SEO avenues.

Privacy and Link Architecture

GDPR requires all companies to have a clear privacy policy that users are made aware of prominently. This actually helps with linkage within SEO: GDPR allows for new ways to flow crawlers from high-volume pages, helping SEO experts get around previous issues of crawlability or discoverability.

Reductions in Paid Search Crossover

We mentioned a possible reduction in paid search above, and much of the reason for this is a connected decrease in the crossover between paid and organic search. These two channels have always cannibalized each other to some degree, but GDPR all but blocked many types of retargeting – this impacted paid search and led to more reliance on organic listings, which in turn limited this cannibalization that wasted your money in the past.

GDPR basics impact SEO

For more on GDPR and how it’s impacted the SEO sphere, or to learn about any of our online marketing themes, speak to the staff at SEO Werkz today.

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