2018 Organic Search Winners and Losers, Part 2

June 17, 2021

In part one of this two-part blog, we went over some of the most important winners and losers from research on 2018 organic search visibility. The SEO industry is one that draws heavy value from tracking and understanding these kinds of trends, and the results of the past year can tell us a great number of things about the future.

At SEO Werkz, we’re here to provide you with the most comprehensive, high-quality SEO services available. In today’s blog, we’ll go a little bit deeper and break the 2018 results down by specific industries, plus by a few major trendlines you should be keeping an eye on as they relate to your business and internet marketing efforts.

Breakdown by Industry

As part of their research, Searchmetrics broke down the 250 biggest increases and decreases among domains in terms of SEO visibility for 2018. Using this data, they were able to categorize which general industries saw the biggest gains and losses in this area for the year. Some of the big positive areas included:

  • Media and events: Largely due to major Google Updates including video carousels, 42 percent of the most successful websites in 2018 were in this sphere
  • Health: 8 percent of sites
  • E-Commerce: 6 percent of sites
  • Dictionary/encyclopedia: 4 percent of sites
  • Q&A/Forum/social media: 4 percent of sites

In addition, areas like search, portal, mail and jobs also saw moderate increases. On the flip side, some of the largest loser areas for the year included:

  • Media and events: 30 percent of the sites with the largest decrease also fell within media and events – as you can see, this area is by far the most volatile within organic search
  • E-commerce: 14 percent of sites
  • Health: 8 percent of sites (some pages in the industry did very well, but some others saw big declines)

Important 2018 Search Trends


Here are a few big markers from within the industry that it’s important to note moving forward:

  • Video content: One of the single biggest winners for 2018 was all forms of video content. Google made a core algorithm update in June of 2018, one that helped boost YouTube to becoming the single largest riser in terms of organic search results. A much larger number of search queries now return videos in the results, though this number did begin to relax slightly by the end of the calendar year after exploding during summer and fall.
  • split: Another huge trend from 2018 was the split of the former realm into several distinct domains, a few of which had major success. While a few such sites have lost visibility, others like, and have all done fantastically well.
  • Health industry losses: Google made a big E-A-T update in August, and it had a huge impact on sensitive health topics, including big changes for incorrect information. Huge fluctuations took place on both sides of the coin, widening the gap between the most and least successful health-related domains.
  • Content and UX: The situation plus other examples from the year showcased just how important content and user experience are. Google is clearly looking for clusters of content that are both high-quality and bring a great site experience.

For more on important 2018 trends for search visibility, or to learn about any of our online marketing solutions, contact the experts at SEO Werkz today.

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