One of the secrets to successful search engine optimization marketing is staying on top of the latest SEO trends. What will 2018 bring for SEO marketing? Here are six predictions for the changes you can expect to see this year.
- Voice Search: Already, one in five mobile search queries comes from voice search, reports Search Engine Land. As the use of smart devices like Google Home increases, it will be even more important for business websites to optimize for voice search. To do so, you’ll want to use keywords that sound more like natural language queries, reflecting the way people will search for your business. Web.com’s SEO marketing experts can improve your keyword strategy; they’ll ensure your site uses the keywords best suited for how your customers actually search.
- Image Search: Online searches using images rather than words are on the rise, and this trend will grow because more and more mobile devices are incorporating image analysis automation, according to Absolunet. The more and better images you provide for your products, the more discoverable your website will be when someone does an image search. Bonus: If you’re trying to reach customers internationally, image search eliminates the language barrier.
- Mobile Search and More: Google is likely to launch its mobile-first index this year, Search Engine Land reports. What does that mean? Google will “rank its search listings based on the mobile version of content, even for listings that are shown to desktop users.” In other words, even if you don’t care about mobile users, your website will have to be mobile-friendly to rank.
- User Experience: Closely related to mobile friendliness, user experience will grow in importance for your site’s SEO in 2018, Search Engine Watch predicts. The better the user experience, the more users will interact with your website; the increased interaction signals to search engines that your site is useful. Your load speed, navigation and readability are all key factors in a positive user experience, so make sure they are up to par both on desktop and mobile.
- Featured Snippets: Featured Snippets/Answer Boxes (the text-heavy answers to questions that appear at the top of Google search results) are often the only place an internet user has to go to answer a question. To get listed in Featured Snippets, Search Engine Watch advises, try creating content in Q&A format, or using lists, tables or graphs. (Of course, don’t overdo any one content strategy; make sure you have a mix of different types of content.) The SEO marketing experts at Web.com can help you create original content that gets your target audience’s attention.
- Brand Mentions: SEO marketing has long focused on building backlinks, and backlinks to reputable websites will still be important in the coming year. (Web.com’s SEO services can help you with link building.) However, in 2018, Search Engine Watch predicts, “linkless” brand mentions will become more valuable as search engine ranking signals. In other words, each mention of your business brand online—in reviews, on social media or on blogs—not only raises brand awareness among prospective customers, but may also boost your SEO. Spark discussion about your business online, and enjoy a win-win.
Which of these six changes are you most excited about for 2018?
Photo by Kobu Agency on Unsplash
Rieva Lesonsky is CEO of GrowBiz Media, a media and custom content company focusing on small business and entrepreneurship.
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