Search Engine Optimization (SEO) is a $65 billion industry. With that much money and power, you want to make sure you’re getting a top-level SEO firm to assist you with your SEO needs. Or maybe you’re an SEO guru yourself. Either way, you know how important it is to stay on top of Google’s latest algorithm and the trends that dictate your SEO rank. Here are 9 SEO trends that will dominate in 2018:
User experience (UX) will continue to be the hottest topic around. People want to have and visit a website that has a superior UX factor. When working with a UX designer, you’ll want to consider the wants, needs and goals of your company or website. Knowing what the purpose of your site is and where you see your future going will help a UX designer optimize your website’s experience for search engines and people alike.
Google’s RankBrain artificial intelligence algorithm is getting closer and closer to human thought. That being said, real people want real information. Instead of wasting your time on keywords to include in your articles, focus on creating high quality, informative content for your audience. You’ll want to have as much information possible, and you’ll need a solid UX strategy for posts so that you can organize your content. Think about adding a glossary or mouse-over definitions to enhance the depth of your content.
3. On-page engagement
Mouse-over definitions, calls to action, and interactive content can help you keep your audience on your page longer. The websites that are ranking highest in search results are those that keep their readers on their pages for longer periods of time. This is an indicator for RankBrain to mark this content as valuable. Use this to your advantage when investing in valuable content.
4. Long-form content
If you have a well-written, engaging article, people will read it even if it’s long. This increases on-page engagement, which in turn increases SEO ranking. It also compliments UX, as the data UX designers get from the traffic and time spent on your site can help UX designers optimize it for your audience.
5. Expert opinions and sources
Valuable, relevant content means authentic, correct content. Whenever possible, use the opinions and sources from experts in your industry to bolster your credibility. This isn’t just about linking out to expert content. It’s about having a conversation that examines that content, showing how your brand or company falls in line with that content, and sharing it with the world. It’s Public Relations 101, but it’s a hot topic in SEO for 2018.
6. Voice enabled search
As more households are equipped with smart home, voice activated devices, voice enabled search will become a necessary feature in the near future. Enable voice activated search on your website so people searching the web with Siri, Amazon Alexa, and Google Home can quickly find and digest your content.
7. Snippets and quick answers
Many people won’t click-through to a website unless they know the content is likely what they’re looking for. Help them with their search by enabling and providing snippets and quick answers for Google’s search results. It’s easy to do and you’ve probably seen it come up many times in search results. Whether it’s a recipe, a definition, or directions, your audience will appreciate the time you saved them by proving your worth upfront.
With over half of all traffic coming from mobile devices, it’s important that your website works from a mobile perspective first. Don’t rely on responsive design that was geared toward laptops and desktops. Invest in mobile-first design.
9. Visual search
Although Google has had image search for a while, it’s just becoming popular to use images to search for similar content. Make sure your website is optimized for visual search, especially if you are in the food or design industries.