It is 2017 and this is an exciting time for the technology world. Mobile devices are being used at an all-time high, and people are incorporating the Internet into their daily lives more than ever before.
Below, we have 10 SEO trends that will be more important than ever in 2017. Follow these trends to stay ahead of the curve and enjoy your SEO success.
1) Keep Your Backlink Quality High
The days of spamming your site with millions of low-quality backlinks are over. This is now something that could take your site out of the SERPS completely. As you put together your backlink profile, concentrate on high-quality backlinks. These backlinks will pay off in the long run.
How Will They Help In The Long-Run?
They will not only give your site a major boost, they will also be much more likely to stand the test of time. As Google improves their backlink spam detection capabilities year after year, it’s only a matter of time before they are able to kill all but the most valuable backlinks that are linked to your site.
2) Voice Search Usage Is On The Rise
We’ve had voice search capabilities on our mobile devices for a long time now, but it wasn’t until recently that people are beginning to incorporate this into their daily lives. It is not a significant trend yet, but it will continue to increase throughout 2017 and beyond.
Voice search is still in its infant stages, but it’s something to keep an eye on. It’s clearly on the rise and it will soon begin opening up new opportunities for marketers.
How Can I Take Advantage Of Voice Search Now?
Think about the keywords that you are targeting and how someone searching through voice search may say them out loud. There are certain keywords and key phrases that are searched differently based on how they are entered in Google. Typing in a search phrase may have a slight difference between how you would speak it.
Try to identify and work these variations into your website as longtail and secondary keywords. You may be able to find additional traffic this way.
3) Instant Answers Will Take Away Your Traffic
If you have ever done a voice search on mobile, you may have noticed that Google sometimes will read you an answer out loud on its own. This is an instant answer. This is common to see coming from mobile devices in particular.
We are finding that more people are becoming comfortable with using their voice search functions on their mobile device. As this continues to increase, you will start to see instant answers occur more frequently.
Why Instant Answers Are Bad For Businesses/Marketers
The problem with them is that Google is behind these instant answers. This means the searcher is getting the answer directly from Google as opposed to landing on your site in order to find it. Although this is convenient for the searcher, it is bad news for the business/marketer because these instant answers are taking traffic away from key phrases.
What Is The Long-Term Outlook?
This is something to keep an eye on. Long-term, there may be an opportunity for marketers to contribute to instant answers themselves. For now, research your keywords on mobile and keep in mind that if the keyword has an instant answer attached to, it may be less valuable than the numbers show.
4) Keyword Intent Matters
Google is continuing their efforts in providing advanced results for the searcher based on the intent of what they are typing. This is taking away some of the direct value that a specific keyword has and transferring it over to the intent of what information the searcher is trying to find out.
We started to see Google paying attention to keyword intent back with the hummingbird update. As they continue to collect more data, we expect this trend to continue into the future.
By placing a focus on intent, Google is able to provide different results for a given keyword based on the longtail words surrounding it.
How Do I Adjust To This As A Business/Marketer?
You should first understand that this trend will only continue to grow in importance. As you continue to compete for keywords in the SERPS, place an emphasis not only on the keywords but on the articles too.
In doing this, you can stay ahead of the game while competing sites that were not able to match the correct intent fall off their ranking positions.
5) Stay On Top Of Visual Content Optimisation
These days, adding visual content on your site isn’t just to appease the users. You can use visual content to make your site more attractive front and SEO sense as well. We can do this by optimising the content.
How To Optimise Your Visual Content
You can optimise your visual content by adding titles, alt text, keywords, and metadata. These are things that we have always known to do and are still very relevant today. You can add a variety of different types of visual content, including images, infographics, videos, and gifs.
The more of these you add, the more opportunities you are creating to target and optimise for additional keywords.
6) New Aspects Of Visual Content Optimisation
Those were the basics, however, it gets a little more detailed after that. You can further optimise your website by taking a closer look at your visual content.
- You can keep the file size small to keep page loading time low.
- You can post the video on your own site for more control, or second party sites like YouTube to gain additional traffic through those platforms.
- Make your visual content shareable to go after viral sharing.
7) Longer Title Tags
Google has been testing longer title tag lengths. Here we have title tag lengths of 69 and 70 characters. In the past, the targeted title tag lengths that were within 55 – 60 characters.
While there is not yet an official change, we anticipate seeing Google implement a longer title tag length in the near future, possibly in 2017. It’s too soon to start coordinating your title tag lengths for the new changes, however, you should be ready for when the time comes.
Why Is A Longer Title A Good Thing?
The more characters they allow you to have, the more information you will be able to squeeze into your titles to catch the attention of your audience. This will give marketers an advantage if they know how to customise their titles for the added length.
If you aren’t sure, always check your title tags as they appear in the search engines after they are published and adjust them from there.
8) The Future Is Mobile
Each year, an increasing number of users are using mobile to access websites over desktop. We predict that in 2017, we will see the highest number of users accessing the web through their mobile devices than ever before.
Not only should you optimise for mobile, you should make that your priority. Test on different mobile devices to ensure that you have a site that looks good on all devices.
Devices Are Growing Larger
Mobile devices are getting larger (i.e. The iPhone Plus line), so don’t ignore these latest devices and tablets as you design your site.
9) People Are Becoming Increasingly Impatient
There is too much information on the web. People don’t want to spend time waiting for websites to load when they can easily find the information somewhere else in an instant.
If you have a loading website, users are more likely than ever to click off your page before they even see it. This trend shows no signs of slowing down in 2017.
Make Loading Times A Priority
You should take a hard look at your website and find ways to speed up the loading time. By doing this, you will be able to keep more users on your page for a longer amount of time.
10) Content Is Still King
If you look through most yearly SEO trend prediction articles, you will find one thing in common – content is the most important factor. Google is continually pushing the envelope so that they can deliver the best possible content to their users.
That’s how they became the most powerful search engine on the Internet and that’s how they will continue to dominate in the coming year.
Through 2017, great content will be more important than ever. You can use great content to allow more people to find your site, keep users on your site for a longer amount time, and increase the chances that they share your site with others.
Keep your content high by providing in-depth research in all of your articles. Avoid filler content that readers will be more likely to skip over and don’t underestimate the importance of great subheadings throughout the article.