Ah, SEO. That ever changing phenomenon that’s crucial for any website. In 2018, it’s one of the most important ways for customers to find your business so it’s something that you can’t afford to neglect.
Yes, search engine optimisation can be a complex web, but that’s no reason to ignore it. There are plenty of free resources and video tutorials out there now which break it down into plain English. Something that you must remember, however, is that it is constantly evolving. So, what worked for your business in 2017 won’t necessarily have the same impact this year.
To help you on your way, we’d put together the following round-up of SEO trends which you should be paying attention to.
1. User Intent
Gone are the days of robotic, mechanical search engines. In 2018, things are way more sophisticated. Google has now tweaked its algorithms focus on what the end user is actually looking for. Digital marketing guru Neil Patel defines user intent as “the goal someone has in mind when typing a query into Google.”
So, how do you optimise your site to accommodate this? Well, there are generally three types of user intent:
- Transactional: The user is looking to purchase something
- Navigational: The user is seeking a certain page, resource or website
- Informational: The user requires further information to answer a question.
Your content therefore needs to be tailored to suit one of these types of searches. For example, if you run a fitness blog, chances are, your content will need to be informational. This will enable you to capture searches such as “How to tone abs in six weeks.” By putting yourself in the users shoes, you’ll be able to tailor your content accordingly.
Yes, this gem isn’t going anywhere. In fact, in 2017 Cisco predicted that video will take up 82% of internet traffic by 2021. So, if you’re not already investigating video for your business, it’s probably time to start.
Don’t fall into the trap of creating videos for the sake of it though. They must be carefully thought out and compliment your overall SEO strategy. So, really think about how video can help your business.
You might want to show a personal side by filming behind the scenes snippets. Or, if you have an eagerly anticipated product, sneak previews always go down a treat. Just be sure to make them interesting and valuable to your target market.
For example, online fashion giant, Asos, uses video to boost conversions by showing models wearing clothes. This gives consumers a far better idea than a standard 2D image.
3. Voice Search
Something we mentioned when we were recently asked by ALT Agency when they were writing their SEO trends report was how voice search is changing the way we structure content.
We’ve all become acquainted with Alexa by now, haven’t we? If not, she’s Amazon’s virtual assistant which lets you do anything from changing the music to ordering dishwasher tablets online. What’s different is that this smart speaker is entirely voice activated.
Like Apple’s equivalent, Siri, and Microsoft’s cortana, these devices are changing the way we search. This therefore has a knock on effect on SEO. We must now tailor our SEO strategies to accommodate voice search more than ever before.
Instead of hand picking keywords, we must now think about natural speech patterns. For example, when typing, we tend to use shorthand like “Closest Ikea Liverpool.” However, when searching by voice, it would probably sound more like this “Where is the closest Ikea to Liverpool?”
Therefore, when adapting your SEO for voice search, it’s important to think about how questions will be asked. Here’s a useful article to help.
To sum up
First and foremost, it’s vital that you are clear on your SEO goals. Every business is different and will require a tailored strategy. Make sure you constantly evolve your efforts as although these trends are hot now, they’ll have moved on by next year.