Apple WWDC: SEO Takeaways from the iOS 8 and More New Apple Updates

As Apple and Google become more competitive in their quest for technological dominance, they have started to ignore each other’s existence.

OK, that’s not entirely true. Apple’s two-hour keynote speech at the iOS8 conference only mentioned Google twice. When it had to do with new features coming this fall, though, Apple’s new operating system doesn’t have much Google about it.

Among the many changes and innovations introduced for iOS 8, two search engines gained a stronger affiliation with Apple’s new interface. Microsoft’s Bing was mentioned more than a couple times during the keynote, and will serve as Siri’s default search engine. Likewise, the unheralded search engine DuckDuckGo scored a huge win as a search option for Safari in the new OS X Yosemite.

More about the DuckDuckGo Search Engine

With more concern about internet privacy, DuckDuckGo markets itself as a smart search “with no-tracking privacy policy.” Since Google made the announcement in 2011 that they were retaining search data, DuckDuckGo’s search numbers skyrocketed over 600 percent through 2013. With the NSA Prism scandal still in view, DDG’s footprint will have a chance to expand more into the mainstream public by virtue of Apple products.

What Apple’s New Updates Mean for SEO

While Bing and DuckDuckGo will have greater opportunity for outreach with Apple fans, it’s unclear whether any of this exposure will stick. Both search platforms offer results from a smaller amount of search queries. As a result, Apple users will have to be satisfied with the results from the meager sample size.

It’s safe to say SEO professionals should prepare themselves for an upswing in Bing and DuckDuckGo search queries when the new Apple products are released in November. As a result, scanning through Bing Webmaster Tools and analytics from DuckDuckGo will be useful to monitor.

Whether Apple users will abandon Google search for an alternative engine, though, is an extremely tough sell. But that is the battle that Apple has chosen to wage.

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