No matter what your online commercial activity is, if you desire to stay visible for your users and customers, you definitely need to know how to optimize your website for SERP. Here are some tips on how to stay on top of SEO trends in 2019.
We probably all agree that to make money in cyberspace, an outstanding online presence is absolutely number one on our checklist. Easy to say, it’s not that simple to execute, as the business environment has never before been so competitive and fast changing.
Prime yourself with a cup of coffee, sit comfortably and take a glimpse into the most important of on-page SEO trends for 2019 & see what they might mean for your optimization strategy.
#1. Mobile first
Numbers don’t lie. As Statista reported, mobile phones generated more than 52% of global online traffic in 2018. Four years earlier it was just 27%. You don’t need a crystal ball to predict that there will be more and more non-desktop searches. Next month. Next week. Tomorrow.
No wonder that Google decided to prioritize mobile users experience over desktop by releasing in March of 2018 the mobile first indexing update. As explained by Google: “Mobile first indexing means that Googlebot will now use the mobile version of your site for indexing and ranking, to better help our (primarily mobile) users find what they’re looking for”.
It was another step done by the tech giant from California towards mobile devices users happiness. Predicting that desktop searches domination will be a thing of the past, Google launched its mobile-friendly campaign back in 2015.
What does the era of the mobile-first indexing mean for your business?
Basically, you have to make sure the mobile version of your site is as good, user-friendly and full of key content as the desktop one, as it will be prioritized by Googlebot and considered as your number one offer for the online community.
No matter if their searches come from a desktop or mobile devices.
#2. Voice search
Remember “Demolition Man”? Of course, you do!
It’s a classic one. Sylvester Stallone and Wesley Snipes chasing one another in the city of the future. The action movie about an old-school cop and a retro thug is 25 years old, but some of the futuristic visions presented by director Marco Brambilla couldn’t be more accurate. One of them, perfectly up-to-date when it comes to SEO trends for 2019, is voice search.
Cortana, Bixby, Alice, Siri, and Alexa. Add to that list the less sexy-called but equally impressive Google Assistant and you will get a starting lineup of a team-leading another revolution in the online industry.
Although the transition from typing keywords into search engines to talking to digital devices is not going to happen overnight, the process has already started and it will soon have a significant impact on digital marketing and SEO practices, as speaking and typing are completely different ways of searching for information.
ComScore – quite optimistic in its predictions – expects that by 2020 more than half searches will be voice-based. Other reports point to 30%, a number significant enough to cause big changes in SEO strategies. Obtaining information from search engines will no longer be limited to typing our queries into browsers and then choosing one amongst the best-ranked results.
An equally important trend when it comes to voice search is localization. As stats show that search combinations including “near me” and “to buy” or “tonight” are growing at a dizzying pace try to be SEO-friendly for your local market.
#3. Quality writing
Go to Google Trends and pick the first subject from the list related to your profile.
Start from a clickbait title. Then write anything about a trending topic, just long enough to persuade users you are an expert. Finish your job with adding an excessive number of corresponding keywords, attractive for search engines (although indigestible to the readers).
Sounds like a perfect advice for 2019? No. Sure, it’s a good way to gain some traffic but a very tricky and dangerous one for your business.
An overwhelming majority of society simply doesn’t accept it. According to 2017 Meaningful Brands index 84% of internauts expect informative and engaging content, but what they get is mostly poor quality or irrelevant.
When people see that a brand is not taking them seriously, they don’t care about it as well. They don’t even care if the brand exists any longer. Ouch!
You are probably starting to ask yourself what that’s got to do with SEO trends? Search engines are getting smarter every year. They don’t focus only on keywords and some primitive criteria anymore. They are looking for the best results for their users’ queries, based on context and readers experience.
E-A-T, standing for expertise, authoritativeness, and trustworthiness, is nothing new in Google search quality evaluation policy but is getting more important each year.
When it comes to good writing there are no shortcuts. Invest your time in firm research, engage your readers, show them your hard work, add LSI keywords related to the topic and give yourself a chance to create a place on the internet full of comprehensive and in-depth content.
Prove to people you really care. They’ll come back or even praise your website on social media (read more about the hottest social media trends here).
#4. Video content
Talking about the positive impact of quality content for your SEO results, we have to at least mention the importance of online video. As stated in the Cisco Visual Networking Index, by 2021 online video will reach 82 percent of all consumer online traffic.
The popularity of online videos is growing and so is their importance regarding search engine optimization techniques. The rules here are simple: the more engaging video is, the longer users stay at your site, which helps you rank higher on Google.
Prepare impressive (interesting, not too long, educational or/and inspiring but still catchy enough) video content for your users and – just push play. Wondering how? Here’s an example:
There’s no need to explain anything. You ain’t going to find nothing more heartwarming, engaging and positive on the web today. Well played, GoPro.
#5. Artificial intelligence
Smart is the word of 2019 in SEO trends.
It suits user’s expectations, brand’s required attitude towards consumers behavior online and – most of all – advancements in search engines technology. Artificial intelligence and SEO is not just a casual flirt anymore. It’s a serious relationship with massive potential impact on your optimization strategy.
A good example is RankBrain, a machine learning algorithm presented by Google in late 2015, which has fast become its third most important ranking signal.
Although it’s not even close to the final solution when it comes to AI and search result optimization, it’s good enough to outperform the expertise of Google’s engineers in choosing the best page for a given search by ten percentage points!
Faster than we think AI is going to be more sophisticated and engaged in the online search process and understanding search queries.
The new SEO reality assisted by artificial intelligence will be dynamic, evolving constantly, with ranking factors differing from query to query, based on user experience, website analytics, content comprehension, location, search history or other users satisfaction.
From the viewpoint of the biggest search engines, the role of AI is to help their users find the most relevant, important and tailor-made answers for their queries. Sites that follow the rules of white hat SEO and swim best in the ocean full of sharks, will get their prize.
What might you do to stay on the surface and be competitive? Pay attention to user experience & satisfaction (on-page SEO good practices are a must these days), try to understand search queries and don’t act like a robot, make your content sound natural, so to be more AI-friendly for SEO.
Now. Take a deep breath and prepare yourself for great SEO results for your site in 2019. Analyze this year’s performance. Understand what you want to accomplish. Establish your goals and define the way you want to achieve them following newest search optimization trends.
- Mobile first. Googlebot uses the mobile – not the desktop – version of your site for indexing and ranking to help internauts find what they are looking for. More than 50% of them use mobile devices.
- In one year at least 30% of searches will be voice-based. Adjust your site for a shift from typing keywords to natural speech commands users give to their devices.
- 84% of internauts expect informative and engaging content. So do search engines focused on user satisfaction. They truly don’t want clickbait headlines and impersonal keywords anymore.
- By 2021 video will reach 82 percent of all consumer online traffic. You need it like oxygen to stay alive and attract the attention of your potential customers or users. For SEO purposes it gives you the time needed to rank high.
- Pay attention to user experience & satisfaction. Try to understand search queries and don’t act like a robot, make your content sound natural, to be more AI-friendly for SEO.