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The Growing Great Power of Google in the Middle East

By: Aziz Baroody from iBaroody LLC

The Internet today in Lebanon and the Middle East is about equivalent to what the Internet was in the United States in 2003 in terms of speed. Internet Speed dictates the Internet user’s growth that is happening right now in Lebanon and throughout the Middle East. From 1992 to 2004, 50 million websites existed online. Between 2004 and 2007, this number doubled to 100 million. Between 2007 and 2011 it went over 600 million! It’s estimated that this number will increase by at least 25% each and every year and for the next ten years.

Since 2003 I was already in the business of web design & development in the USA. The Internet speed was fast enough but not good enough to watch a video online. In the same year I witnessed the “Google Bust”, when Google just exploded and became the main most used Search Engine online making it the number one website in the world. The term “Google it” became popular few years later.

I saw firsthand how Google changed the world and everything we knew about marketing with it! Ten years later in 2012, Google.com is still the most visited website each and every day! As matter of fact Google the Company owns at least 20 of the TOP 100 websites globally! YouTube is just one of them!

Today in Lebanon, anywhere you look you see people everywhere using their PC’s, Macs, Laptops, iPads, iPhones, or any Smartphone to access the World Wide Web the Internet. What is it going to be like nine years from now if statistically Lebanon Internet use is where the USA was back in 2003?

I would say half of the people in Lebanon will live online nine years from now; at least half of the population of Lebanon will spend a minimum of two to three hours a day doing whatever they do online. In terms of exposure and marketing, that’s way more “people attention” that all TV Stations, All Newspapers, all Magazines, all Billboards, and all Radio Stations ever had combined!!!

Back then I was forced to learn everything about Google and how the search results work in order to design and develop websites that would appear in the SERP (Search Engine Results Page). All websites built before the Google Bust became worthless for they did not appear in the Google search results as anyone who owned one would want it to be. A $50,000 website not built for Google results became too expensive to market and had to fail while compared to the $1000 website that was programmed for Google succeeded and generated serious profits to its owners. Websites right away and almost overnight became a MUST thing to own for any company who was in business. Even after owning the websites something had to be done to make these websites strong in Google and a must thing for them to succeed.

A new science and new field in the IT industry was born called SEO. Search Engine Optimization the science behind getting websites ranked high in the Google results pages was a very abstract field back then, no one knew how to do things, why, when, what, and so forth. No one could learn it in school, no one can ask anyone else, and no one knew how things worked. Every person in the business including me had to experiment and teach themselves how to get websites to be ranked number one or at least in the top ten results in Google. Those that taught themselves well became known as “SEO Guys”. Those that excelled at it basically because they got addicted to Google and had to spend thousands and thousands of hours monitoring Google search results became known as “SEO Experts” and basically taught themselves one serious career that even today no University or College can figure out how to teach SEO, an over 150 Billion Dollars a year industry in the United States alone!

Why would anyone build anyone else a website to rank high in Google when you can do it for your own websites? SEO became more and more competitive and a huge secret, companies didn’t know what to do to their websites. Large corporations didn’t have anyone on staff that knew anything about SEO. Webmasters, graphics designers, programmers, computer engineers, project managers, and software experts none had any idea what SEO was and even today none have any idea what SEO is unless they take the time to teach themselves and have to own their own websites to practice and excel at it. The Internet business was almost taken away from real companies and corporations to be mastered by small time people in their pajamas working on their own websites from home. It drove businesses and web owners crazy!

I myself not until 2007 figured out how to use my SEO knowledge to offer it as SEO Services to other companies and businesses. I created an SEO Company in Lebanon called www.LazyURL.com . The website today is still online reflecting what was so new and such a secret in the SEO industry just five years ago! I was the first person to ever create the first 1000 Web Directory List Online. That is a list of websites that accept other websites in their database and lists them in terms of categories. Website Directories was the first secret place how to get free links and links was the big secret of SEO! Now through iBaroody in Lebanon I have been “making online dreams come true since 2002”, helping others promote and make their websites strong in the search engines in order to profit more, gain more, increase their traffic, emails, phone calls, and get more business.

In business, I have seen small businesses generate hundreds of thousands of dollars with their cheap websites just because their websites were designed for Google. On the other hand, large corporations lost millions of dollars in new business to the smaller companies or to those that built SEO websites because their own websites were not designed from scratch for Google. They had to adapt and re-engineer their websites and on an average it took about 3 years for them to do so. During that period those that knew the SEO basics enjoyed the wealth that was created by third party websites. Websites made just for SEO were very high in the Google search results and people would search for anything would find and visit them first, just because they were designed to be ranked number one or two in Google without any real substance or business behind the website. Then these SEO websites owners, who learned SEO on their own in order to promote their websites, would send the traffic to the largest businesses that offered the highest commissions for that market. This created what is called the “Affiliates” and “Resellers” programs you see online today.

SEO right away became the main part of everything called Internet Marketing (Also known as Online Marketing). SEO is also the reason to why Internet Marketing is going to change all marketing in Lebanon and the Middle East. The same thing that happened in 2002/2003 in the USA is going to happen right here at home! This SEO is what started iBaroody www.iBaroody.com and is what iBaroody right now does here in Lebanon for businesses throughout the Middle East. Designing websites to do everything websites do plus at the same time be built for Google is what differentiates iBaroody from other developers in the Middle East.

Aziz Baroody

Aziz Baroody
+961 1 284 222 | +961 3 041 941
Beirut – Lebanon