2018 isn’t over yet, but it feels like it has come and gone with the snap of a finger. Even so, a lot of things happened in the world of SEO this year, and you need to be aware of the changes. Apply them to your SEO playbook going forward, and watch your brand’s online presence grow and prosper. Below are a few of the most important changes of the year.
Quality content has never been more important
Creating top-quality content has been one of the most important SEO tactics for years (over the last few years, we’d dare say it’s even become mandatory). But in 2018? It became essential. If you’re not posting helpful, shareable content on your social media pages this week, you’re arguably ignoring today’s most important SEO tactic.
The beauty of this tip is that it’s so versatile. From posting a how-to article designed to help your followers solve a problem so many of them have to sharing an infographic chock-full of relevant, easily digestible information and beyond, as long as your content is timely, shareable, and interesting it’s all fair game. Look at your competitors’ social media presence to get an idea regarding the type of content they post. If something stands out to you, ask them if you can repost it – just be sure to give them credit.
Neither has video
We all know that Google is the largest search engine in the world. The second? It isn’t Bing – it’s YouTube. Video is huge – but that’s no secret. Browse any social media platform and you’re bound to see wave after wave of videos advertising everything from chocolates to life insurance to yet another cat video. Our mobile networks are capable of loading videos instantly, making our consumption of videos as simple and quick as reading a wall of text.
Video is only going to get bigger – in fact, Cisco predicts that 82% of all web traffic will stem from videos! That’s huge, and now is the time to ensure you make your videos work for you using forward-thinking SEO tactics. The best place to start? Video transcripts. By adding a transcript to your videos, you’re actually creating content that can be indexed by Google and other search engines. This will improve your page rank and allow you to rank higher for keywords/keyphrases. Thus, when creating a video consider writing a script with the keywords you want to rank for. Ensure the title and description of your video using proper keywords and phrases as well while ensuring the thumbnail is large and clear, and you’re well on your way to making video SEO work for you.
This isn’t so much an SEO change as it is an evolution of the Web. Google’s Chrome browser now flags websites that do not begin with HTTPS (a secure, new standard that makes HTTP sites obsolete). What does this mean for you? If your website is not secured, your SEO ranking is going to suffer tremendously. Bring your website into 2018 by ensuring it’s safe and secure for everyone. Unsure how to do this? Our digital marketing agency in Windsor can help.
We’re going to look back at 2018 and realize that this was the year where voice search changed the way we think about SEO and searching in general. 20% of all Google search queries use voice – a huge percentage considering how many billions of queries are made in a given year. It’s thanks to the domination of mobile and advancements made in voice dictation via forward-thinking technologies such as Amazon’s Alexa, Apple’s Siri, and the like. The technology is cool and convenient, but the big takeaway is how it’s transforming how we think about keywords. The days of crafting keywords and phrases around the written word will be history in the coming years; going forward, we’ll have to consider the intent of the searcher, not the keyword. Instead of asking ourselves, “what keywords will trigger my site to show up on the first page of search results,” get into the habit of asking yourself, “what results will the searcher want?” From there, it’s all about creating relevant content that gives the searcher exactly what they want.
Long-form is back
Few things on the Web are as satisfying as reading a long-form, interesting article that keeps you hooked from start-to-finish. It’s like reading a short story, and apparently a lot of people feel the same. This goes against the grain of the tired advice of people having too short of attention spans we’ve been hearing for years. It isn’t true, people love long-form content, and besides; it’s a great way to give your site some much-needed SEO love. Longer content is performing better than shorter content – mainly because people spend more time on the pages (because the content is longer), you can implement more links, keywords, and even an embedded video where it makes sense, and because reading longer content is a bit of a commitment, people will be more willing to share it with their followers. Find relevant, targeted topics coupled with good writing and SEO best practices, and you have a winning combination that will improve your site’s page rank dramatically.
If you are looking for help in optimizing your current website for search, schedule a meeting with Web Geeks to discuss how we can help build your online visibility.