Whether Google Zeitgeist is a useable search engine optimization tool, or not, demands a middle of the road answer. Zeitgeist can be broken down into its German derivatives. Zeit means time. Geist means spirit. Taken literally this translates as time spirit or, correcting for grammatical differences, spirit time. But a straight lexical treatment does no justice to the more poetic translation: the spirit of the times. Turning to Webster we find that Zeitgeist is defined as the general intellectual, moral, and cultural climate of an era. So what does this mean to the search engine optimization consultant? How does that affect SEO as applied to the web owner?
In practical terms Google Zeitgeist is a snapshot of what web surfers search for. This is a worldwide snapshot. For the voyeur in us all this is a way to be the ultimate peeping tom. For those of us with a colder heart Google Zeitgeist brings in data which can be statistically manipulated. This service provides timely information to SEOs and to web owners. This data can be analyzed to show product trends, service trends and highlight those business areas in decline. SEOs should be thrilled.
Of course some SEOs doubt not only the reliability but also the validity of Google Zeitgeist information. These SEOs posit that every top keyword will not have a high search volume. While search volume is easy to comprehend, an understanding of what defines a top keyword is essential. One search engine optimization goal is to generate volume. Another SEO goal is to generate conversions. These doubting SEOs question if Zeitgeist analysis can achieve these dual SEO goals.
That aside, Google Zeitgeist can ease the SEO burden of the Internet monitoring process. This monitoring process seeks to track web surfer searches. SEOs can take this data and turn it into data which is useful for online marketers in promoting products. SEO analysis of Zeitgeist compiled queries will show which business sectors are in demand. The data will also show which keywords were used so that SEO decisions can be guided in website optimization.
Is it a foregone conclusion that Google Zeitgeist information provides a clear, precise snapshot of preferences and trends of web surfers worldwide? Google may believe this to be true. SEO consultants should not be so complacent. The best that can be said is that Google Zeitgeist is a compilation of data at a specific moment in time. SEOs would do well to remember that long ago a sign was posted over the entrance of one of the first computer labs. That sign read: GIGO.
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