SEO has evolved and it has come a long way since the Search Engine Submission times of the last decade. Search Engine Algorithms too have evolved become more intelligent, robust and sophisticated to penalize low quality content and reward overall high quality websites.
Hence, securing high rankings in SERPs is more challenging and requires an in-depth knowledge of the working of the web and also a lot of co-operation from the website owner to develop an online brand, have a good word and world of mouth on social media for the brand and create positive and quality footprints on the web to ensure and future-proof the search engine presence.
The SEO blogosphere today focuses on quality web presence and SERPs as a performance parameter is losing the focus but that is very misleading which in the long run can again tarnish the reputation of the SEO Industry further from a different perspective.
With the quality evolution of the search engine algorithms the approach and methodology of achieving high rankings has changed but ranking high has always been important as only when you rank high your website can get the targeted search traffic which is the major marketing goal of the online marketing campaigns.
High Rankings lead to a high CTR (Click Thru Rate) which leads to increased traffic with a potential for good conversions.
Hence, SEO is beyond rankings does not mean that high SERPs are no longer a long term goal of an SEO campaign but it means that the website has to reach out and branch out and gain quality web presence before it is ensured of a good high ranking search presence.
This is proved from the following study :
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The majority of the objectives of PPC and SEO are the same the way you achieve them is different .