Long-Form Content, Here We Come!
According to a study by SEMRush, long-form content with a hefty word count of over 3,000 words gets three times more traffic and four times more shares. To top it off, they also manage to achieve 3.5 times more backlinks than articles of the average length of 901 to 1,200 words. However, the larger the word count, the more engaging your content has to be to keep your readers hooked. Start focusing on long-form content to achieve higher search rankings. Also, if your content is, or has the potential to be educational, don’t miss out on a chance to show it off to students looking for answers, reference studies, etc. Long-form content that is data-driven has infographics and great internal linking tends to have the lion’s share of eyes and views. The goal is to provide users with shareable information that keeps them engaged and wanting more.
- Break up long blocks of texts with appropriate H2 & H3 subheadings. This makes this easier to read for readers and search engines alike. This is especially crucial to mobile sites.
- If your blog post consists of news stories, facts, or other reference articles, ensure that you link to relevant, authoritative sources with a solid authority score.
- Finally, ensure your content is easy to share. Include obvious sharing links and CTAs.
Voice Search Will Have A Notable Impact on Search Rankings
At home assistants and innovations like Google Assistant, Apple’s Siri, and Amazon’s Alexa, are increasingly popular and will only get bigger. According to Google, 72% of people who own voice-activated speakers, claim that these devices are integrated into their daily routine. Voice search technology has indeed come a long way. In fact, TechCrunch predicts that 55% of households are predicted to own a smart speaker by 2022.
You get the idea. Hence, to optimize for voice search, carefully consider your keywords. Try to identify the longer phrases that people would use in everyday conversation. The longer and more natural colloquial sounding phrasing it is, the better. This is very different when people type as they tend to abbreviate. For example, a person might voice search, “What are the best SEO strategies for 2022” but, they will type the words, “SEO strategy 2022.
Mobile-Friendly Sites Are Never Going Out Of Style
In June 2019, Google rolled out mobile-first indexing, which means that Google predominantly uses the mobile version of your content/website for indexing and ranking accordingly. Usually, the index used the desktop version of a page's content as the primary reference when evaluating the relevance of a page to a user's query. Since the majority of users now access Google Search with a mobile device, Google announced that the Googlebot will now primarily crawl and index pages with the smartphone agent going forward.
Furthermore, starting July 1, 2019, mobile-first indexing is enabled by default for all new websites, whether they are new to the web or previously unknown to Google Search. For older or existing websites, Google will still continue to monitor and evaluate pages based on SEO best practices.
This change makes the most sense, given that projections state 73% of internet users will access the internet solely via mobile devices by 2025. Check how effective your mobile site is with Google’s free mobile-friendly test. Next, take a peek at the “mobile usability” report in Google Search Console.
- You must ensure that Google can crawl your URLs to make your site mobile friendly, so make sure you don’t have a “disallow directive”.
Googlebot won’t load content requiring user interactions, like clicking or swiping. Stray away from placing content on sliding panels. You have to make sure Google can see this so-called lazy-loaded content. Finally, ensure you use the same meta robots tags on the desktop and mobile sites.
Artificial Intelligence To Play A Much Bigger Role
Artificial intelligence (AI) is changing the way we interact with each other and content online. Google’s AI algorithm deserves an honorable mention. Historically, marketers have slogged away trying to crack the algorithm that could lead to a promising world of mass visibility. The algorithm called RankBrain plays an essential role in Google’s content indexing and ranking. RankBrain is not a new algorithm though. However, it is getting better and you need to up your SEO game too!
So, the million-dollar question is, how do you optimize your SEO for RankBrain, the AI? While Google won’t share details, experts believe that excellent user experience is the key determinant. These could include factors from click-through rate, bounce rate to time spent on-page. You need to captivate your readers with engaging, on-brand content. Online tools such as SEMrush can help you assess your webpages’ strengths-based on factors like backlinks, readability, and more.
Optimizing Video Content Is Now An SEO Staple
With content being rolled out daily by video giants like Netflix and youtube, it now seems that online video seems to be the way forward, in terms of visual content. YouTube has more than 2 billion logged-in users. But here’s the kicker, 70% of what people watch on youtube is from the ‘Recommended’ section. Still not on board? According to Cisco, video content is projected to surpass all else in terms of media consumption.
So, how can you optimize your video content? Firstly, ensure you optimize your channel’s name and description. Use keywords that describe your niche or what you do, but make sure you don’t stuff the description with too many keywords! The idea is to provide a quick, painless overview of what your channel is all about.
You can also make good use of Youtube’s autocomplete feature if you need a bit of a push in the right direction. Simply start typing in your video's topic and see what pops up in the search field. This is essentially a list of suggested keywords, generated by youtube, telling you exactly what people on YouTube are searching for (related to that topic).
Learn & Implement the EAT Concept
In SEO terminology, EAT is short for Expertise, Authority, and Trustworthiness. These factors are promptly mentioned in Google’s Search Quality Evaluator Guidelines. Google mentions that they use third-party Search Quality Raters globally that are highly trained to provide feedback. This helps them understand what changes could make Google’s Search more useful.
- Produce professional, industry-standard documents with regards to your market or niche.
- Acquire backlinks from high authority domains.
- Hire professional writers who can help deliver quality, fact-checked content.
- Update content and photos on your website.
- Get as many reviews on Google as possible. Think about incentivizing your customers to leave a positive review.
- Get a Wikipedia page and showcase your expertise to Google.
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