Over the last few years in the oil industry, a popular theory has arisen that all of the world’s easily obtainable oil is running out. The problem of increasingly difficult-to-extract oil is also compounded by the fact that oil producing countries are in many cases third-world nations that are industrializing and are now consuming more oil themselves, making them a less likely source of exports in the future. The theory (called “Peak Oil“), although controversial, makes sense, as the supply of oil underground is relatively fixed. Although natural processes doubtless create more oil, it’s apparently happening slowly over geologic time, while we’re extracting it relatively quickly; it’s not really a renewable resource from the perspective of beings that live for only 70-100 years.
This theory is now being applied by others to the Gold mining market (i.e. the theory of “Peak Gold”), and when you look at graphs of production over time, the consistent rise in how much capital it takes to extract an ounce of gold from the ground and so on, it’s a very compelling theory as well.
I have been thinking about similar problems in the search world for some time now and would like to introduce the concept of “Peak SEO” – in other words, the concept that the supply of available keywords and SERP positions is essentially fixed, and increasingly the low-hanging fruit is being eliminated and reducing the ROI of SEO more and more every year Read on »