It is no secret that SEO is an ongoing process. Businesses have to adapt to the latest SEO trends in order to stay relatable in the digital realm. The methods that were useful in the past may even be harmful to your SEO strategy. As the search engines continuously evolve and their algorithms are getting sophisticated day by day, it is important to pay heed to these changes.
In simple words, SEO is all about being found by the search engines by increasing the quantity and quality of content. The primary aim is to increase visibility and drive more traffic on your website.
It is time to take a look at the current SEO trends and strategies that every SEO professional should know about. The year 2020 has been different due to the ongoing pandemic and so should our efforts to make our businesses successful. Here is a list of effective SEO strategies for this year.
1. User-Focused Optimization And BERT
Since the BERT was created and published by Jacob Devlin and his colleagues from Google in 2018, there is no going back from it. This language model will revolutionize the way we optimize for search engines. If you haven’t been in touch, it is the right time to prepare for it.
The language model is helpful in refining the search results for the users by understanding the context of the queries. This is more like user-focused optimization.
Your domain authority is now based on E-A-T, Expertise, Authoritativeness, and Trustworthiness. SEO professionals should look closely at how the pages are indexed crawled and presented in the search results pages. Focus on the technical delivery of the content as well as the usefulness.
2. Image Searches Are Ready To Take Off
Search behaviors are constantly evolving. Although written queries are still at the top, visual search or image search is ready to take off this year. Eyebrow raising stats are there to highlight its importance. For instance, Google Lens has been used for more than 1 billion times already. Picture based platforms such as Pinterest have about 600 million visual searches every month.
Although the technology is still in its infancy the results are great. Users are inclined to use the feature as it makes searches “swift”. This search is super helpful for fashion, travel industry, medicine, and a lot more.
The first step is Image SEO. It is important to use descriptive file names and write alt text for every image. More importantly, maintain the authority of your page. It is a stronger ranking signal than ever before. Make sure you are posting fresh and relevant visual content for your users.
3. Videos Continue To Grow
According to Cisco “Online video will make up 80% of all online traffic by 2021”. The numbers are mind-boggling. There are millions of videos out there on the internet but users still want more video content. Your digital marketing strategy is incomplete without videos.
If you haven’t been posting videos in the past, it is the right time to start doing it. More and more search results now contain video snippets from the most relevant content. The feature directly takes the user to the part of the video which answers the question directly.
The best idea is to divide your video content into discreet sections. It is not only helpful for the users but Google can understand it better. Optimize each video for SEO. Using the right keywords in the title seems to be helpful. Provide transcripts for the videos.
4. The Rise Of Voice Searches
About 20% of all mobile searches are voice-based. With the growing popularity of Siri and Alexa, more and more millennials are using the voice search feature. Google sources search answers from the top three results so it is important to focus on ranking.
Most of the voice searches are question-based. If you want to make a piece of content that is relatable, post questions and answers in it. Think about people “speak” instead of how they “write”. This usually includes adding long-tail keywords in the content.
5. Featured Snippets Optimization
Have you noticed the number of featured snippets in search results? Almost every other search result page has a featured snippet that provides the most relevant answer to the query. Focus your efforts on featured snippets and you will see great results.
The first step is to search for the keywords you already rank for and then the keywords that rank for featured snippets. Ahref’s organic keyword reports can be very helpful for you.
The next step is to add a snippet bait on your page containing those specific keywords. The section should be about 40-60 words long, the ideal length of featured snipped.
6. Backlinks Are Still The Thing
The domain authority depends on backlinks, more than ever before. It is not about the number of backlinks but the quality. You need to focus on link building for cracking the first page of search results. There is no shortcut to it but keep creating unique and fresh content.
List your business in reliable web directories such as Citylocal101, invite guest post writers and collaborate with the industry influencers to make things work.
7. “Search Intent” Optimization
Search intent was the talk of the town for the year 2019. People were introduced. Just like every other technology it takes some time to become mainstream. This year most of the SEO professionals will already be focusing on search intent.
If your published content does not match search intent it will not work. Pay attention to the intent of the keyword, either it is about buying, comparing, or just learning a new thing.
For most of the keywords, the intent is in it. For others figuring out the intent is your work and providing the content that works well for the user intent.
Creating list posts is the best thing you can do about your SEO strategy. The golden rule of success is to “create list posts, create more list posts, and keep creating list posts”.