Latest SEO Trends in 2018
For most of us, we consider search engine optimization to be all about ranking higher on the search engine results page (SERP), but we don’t put too much thought into using SEO as a ranking tool rather than a sales tool. In 2018, SEO is going to be thought about differently. Instead of just thinking about how we can get our site listed higher on Google’s search pages, we should be considering how our website will rank higher and what we can do to improve sales through our website. Right now, the year is still early so we’ve compiled a list of definitive ranking factors and latest news that will help with your SEO throughout 2018 and years to come.
2018 SEO Ranking Factors and Strategies
1) User Signals – Google has been a dominant force in search engines because it pays close attention to what its users want. In 2018, user experience and user signals are major ranking factors for Google. Let’s look at some common user signals.
– Dwell Time: How long a user spends on the website is a crucial factor.
– Click Through Rate (CTR): When shown in the search results, how often does the user click on the result.
– Bounce Rate: How quickly does the user switch from the website back to Google search without browsing other pages on the website.
Ideally, you should have high dwell time and click-through rate and low bounce rate. Higher dwell time suggests to Google that your customers are interested in what they’re reading. Better click through rate implies that your description was clever, creative or enticing enough to want users to read the information more thoroughly. You might entice visitors to your website with your meta descriptions and titles, but if you don’t have the content to back it up, they are sure to bounce back to Google to continue searching which suggests Google that you are not in the right position and will move you lower in rankings.
2) Using the Mobile First Approach – All data suggests that mobile searches are competing with Google desktop searches and will soon eclipse them. Keeping in times with trends Google is going to pay more emphasis to websites that are better optimized for Google. In 2017 they announced that they will be switching to a “mobile first index”. This would mean that Google would consider the mobile version of your website the “real version” and would prioritize rankings accordingly. Soon every search is going to be primarily about mobile. If you would like to see how well your website is doing on mobile according to Google, visit the Google Mobile Friendly Tool and enter your website URL as well as their their PageSpeed Insights. Google displays their insights and suggestion on how you can improve. We have also discussed how optimizing for better mobile page speed can help you boost your website SEO.
3) Pay Attention to Videos – According to CISCO, by the year 2021, 80% of all online traffic will be about video. If your strategies does not keep video in mind you will be missing out on not only great traffic to your website, but to a boost to your SEO as well. You need to create snappy, exciting video content that users will love to devour and share. YouTube is the second largest search engine already next to Google. In fact, Google bought Youtube over a decade ago. So if you are not fully utilizing the full potential of the online video platform then you are practically reversing your website rankings.
4) Voice Search – With Mobile assistants gaining popularity (Google’s “Okay Google”, Amazon’s Alexa, Apple’s Siri, and Samsung’s Bixby) pay more attention to voice search ranking factors. At least 40% of all adults perform a voice search every day. Voice searches have been growing steadily since the year 2008 and are up by 35 times since then. They’ll only get more popular as mobile assistants get smarter and more people start using them. Instead of getting left behind, start working on your voice search SEO.
In 2018, SEO is going to be all about the user. This trend is likely to keep moving forward over the years as well. If you are able to get your customers to really participate on your website with comments, social shares, watching embedded videos on your website then you’ve done a great job with regard to the quality and quantity of your content (which are still relevant SEO factors). If you keep the public engaged on your website, you will do well at SEO. This has always been the case with SEO, think of your user’s first and foremost and if you do that, Google will credit you.