Only those who master all disciplines will be successful. Even in 2018, search engine optimization will neither be rocket science nor a science. Everyone can learn search engine optimization. However, for now, we would like to elaborate on the top 5 SEO opportunities for 2018-2019.
Mobile First Index
The outcry was great when Google announced that the Mobile First Index would be the leading SEO factor in the future. Based on the usage figures, this is just a logical step. However, Google has extended the announcement deadline and will not be implementing it until 2018. For now, it offers a tool to check the mobile version of your website. Google has also announced that Google AdWords will be able to check the mobile-friendliness of landing pages.
With the Mobile First Index, Google is putting the smartphone at the center of search engine optimization. The notorious “mobile-first indexing” is about getting a website’s mobile version into the Google index, which significantly influences rankings.
Mobile first does not mean mobile only! Webmasters who do not have a mobile-friendly website version still have the option of indexing their desktop version on the site. However, one must also assume that previous rankings slip in this case, generating less visibility.
Voice search optimization
The market research company Comscore expects that by 2020, every second search query will be made by voice. In search engine optimization, voice search is the next big thing. On May 18, 2016, Google CEO Sundar Pichai said in his Google I/O keynote that 20% of all requests within the mobile app on Android devices are voice searches.
Before we come to concrete SEO measures for voice search optimization, we must briefly acquaint ourselves with the basics. Even before there was a voice search, Google had provided, among other things, a major update for the basis of the voice search: the Hummingbird update.
With the Hummingbird update, Google also considered the user’s intention and the contextual meaning of a search query. This path will then be followed up in language search and built on.
Today, instead of typing keywords, we talk to the language assistants. At the Microsoft Build Developer Conference in 2016, Microsoft CEO Satya Nadella stated: “Human language is the UI layer”.
Spoken language is usually more extravagant than manually typed searches, especially on a mobile device, where the input is a bit more time-consuming. So, we can talk about 150 words per minute but only write about 40 words per minute.
Indeed, Voice search optimization is the next big thing in SEO.
With the increasing accuracy of digital assistants, it is becoming increasingly important to respond to users’ specific requests as accurately as possible. The big challenge of SEO 2018 will be to ascertain the users’ intentions to react to them with relevant content.
Artificial Intelligence and SEO
Artificial intelligence is one of the most critical technologies of the future and has long since made its way into everyday life.
Google is, in my opinion, the most robust artificial intelligence provider on our planet, and it will eventually offer us an answer instead of search results. Therefore my thesis is this: The search engine will die out, and Google will become the answering machine. Google’s artificial intelligence is an enormous opportunity on the one hand and, on the other hand, an option that we must control very carefully. We don’t want it to end in a Skynet scenario – the AI from the movie Terminator, which could no longer be kept in check.
Since Google uses its artificial intelligence RankBrain to evaluate the most relevant content, general ranking factors are losing importance. The single keyword is no longer crucial, but the search query’s context is. Good content today is provided by relevant content, technical factors, and lengthy user visits to the website.
Artificial intelligence already has a significant impact on search results. AI systems majorly contribute to answering the countless, complex, and sometimes unpopulated search queries.
Google’s determination to move the AI sector forward should bring us some exciting developments in 2018.
Long-term business with the right SEO strategy
An ultimate SEO strategy is one that can be used by the majority of all website owners and is independent of business models. It should work just as well for news websites as for online shops, social sites, and blogs, but also for hobby sites, affiliate projects, institutional websites, B2B, and other types of websites.
“Stop thinking about optimizing your page and think about optimizing the search experience instead.” – AJ Kohn.
The world is changing fast. The SEO industry has been lagging since 2012 (Penguin 1) regarding Google updates and changes. For the SEO of today, a big question remains open:
What must a modern SEO strategy look like today?
By what means, procedures, and tactics can a website develop rankings sustainably and securely?
Well, it should be stated that search engine optimization can be subdivided into different subgroups:
OnPage: This area is dedicated to technical optimizations. These include the URL structure, the structure of the individual pages, the technical content, the internal linking, and many other such aspects.
Content: Content should ensure good rankings. It is about finding the right content for different target groups. These include, among others, potential prospects, buyers, and customers, but also content for the general public, which often interacts with the website and potentially sets external links.
Links: these are essential to SEO because there is a direct relationship between the quality/quantity of links to your website and how much search traffic your business website receives. Your websites become more credible when you have other sites refer to them.
Interactivity: Chrome and Android are likely to provide Google with usage data for more than half of the world’s people. They know exactly who, when, how, which links are clicked, which websites and pages are read, what people are buying, and how they otherwise operate. Google also uses this data when determining rankings in organic search results.
For a website to achieve absolute dominance in search engine rankings, it must have an above-average performance in all areas. Only in this way can long-term high and stable rankings be achieved.
SEO and Social Media
Regarding social media and search engine optimization, there’s one rule which governs them both: relevant, high-quality content will get found, noticed, and shared. Social media optimization is thus integral to your search engine optimization (SEO) and marketing campaign.
Facebook has been working on its algorithm for a long time to combat spam on the platform, and finally, the update is officially implemented. As of now, less relevant links in the news feed are significantly downgraded. The most notable benefit of Social Media Posting and Social Media Optimization is that you can quickly get backlinks that improve your rank. That way, you can get more visitors and close more sales.
Social media optimization is vital to your SEO campaign to achieve top rankings in search engines like Google. We all need it, but the road to a high Google ranking is long.
A good search engine ranking is necessary to be seen on the Internet. However, how do you move up in the search results? In addition to on-page and classic off-page optimization, another factor is becoming increasingly important: social signals. Shares, likes, or mentions on social media via Facebook, blogs, and forums influence the search engine ranking on Google.
Optimize your pages for your users, not search engines! Google’s concern is to provide users with the best possible results for their searches. Thanks to artificial intelligence and in-depth learning, search engines understand search intentions better and prefer those pages that best serve their readers.
Website owners should ask themselves the question: what does the user want to find on these pages? This is nothing new, but in 2018 and 2019 it will become more and more central. The growth of artificial intelligence is likely to cause individual ranking factors to become less critical.
Originally published on CEOWORLD.