The SEO industry is a moving target that is constantly changing. As 2019 ramps up, there are some strategies and tactics that can help boost your business and earn you more traffic. Here are 5 trends to consider when looking at 2019.
1. User Intent
As defined by Searchmetrics, “the user intent or search intent states which goal or intention an internet user has when entering a search term into a search engine.” This means that researching and anticipating what your user is looking for can guide the type of content you provide and the medium in which you display it.
Knowing your audience (and how they search) is an important aspect of content marketing.
In Google’s earlier days, it was possible to rank well by keyword stuffing and having tons of backlinks without doing research on who visits your pages. Fast forward to a more sophisticated Google, and this is no longer the case. In order to affect metrics like time on page, bounce rate, session duration and conversions, you need to be able to predict what your users are searching for.
2. Local Search
Local search is increasing in popularity as the rise of smartphones continues to grow. Nearly everyone has a mobile device these days and with that comes people searching for answers on the go now more than ever before. According to ChatMeter, nearly half of all Google searches are locally based. This presents a huge opportunity for SEOs!
Think of the last time you looked for an address, phone number, or menu of a restaurant. For SEOs, supplying accurate information across numerous platforms provides a better, more accurate experience for users and they are then more likely to convert to customers.
At minimum, start by optimizing your Google My Business listing. There is a lot of potential with this platform and not many people use it to the fullest.
3. Technical SEO
So, you’ve got a great website. But can search engines and users get to it easily?
Technical SEO encompasses factors like speed, indexation, and accessibility. If your website takes more than 3 seconds to load, you’re losing visitors. By making technical adjustments, you can increase the chances of growing traffic to your website – and keeping that traffic on your website.
There are many tools to check the technical SEO performance of your website. Using a crawler like Screaming Frog can quickly help determine what issues are present, helping you to create a roadmap of fixes to improve performance. For page speed pointers, you can use a tool like Google Page Speed Insights. This will give you an actual score and a list of how to improve that score. The bottom line, fixing technical issues on your website will dramatically help in 2019.
4. Voice Search
With the rise of voice assistants and devices like Amazon Echo, Google Home, and Apple HomePod, people are interacting with search in a different way in 2019. It’s common to search for directions, weather, recipes, and thousands of other queries by using your voice, and this presents a different approach for SEOs.
Optimizing your content for voice search means taking a more natural, conversational approach. It is necessary to rank high on search engine results pages (SERPs).
While this is still a relatively new trend, it will only grow in years to come. If you need help getting started, learn more about why and how to optimize for voice search here.
5. Structured Data
Structured data refers to implementing some type of markup on pages of your site to provide additional information about the pages and their content. Structured data provides more information on a listing such as product ratings, price, recipe calories, cook time, and much more that ultimately increase trust and reliability from a user’s perspective.
As the name suggests, structured data is information that is highly organized and easier to digest. In 2019, you’ll find more results in Position 0 and featured snippets. Search engines use structured data to generate these snippets.
While for now, these snippets may take away from actual clicks to your site, it’s critical to add and optimize your structured data as it also plays a role in voice search. Combine that with the likelihood of improvements over time to SERPs and ranking in this spot is a huge opportunity.
2019 looks like it will prove to be a big year for SEO. With many of these new trends continuing to grow and emerge, it is necessary to incorporate new approaches and strategies to your SEO campaigns.