Have you already gotten used to the fact that it's 2020? No? Good!
That only means there's still time to get informed on the latest news and trends of the SEO world in the current year. Today's fast-paced world has a challenging tempo of on-coming web stories to match. The sooner you know what guidelines you should stick to, the more likely you are to climb up the Google ladder and keep yourself at the top of Daddy G's first page.
With that, you'll get to keep the world's eyes, ears, and minds looking in your idea/brand/micro store's direction both in 2020 and later on! Interested? Great, because below you'll find a few general pointers regarding SEO trends in 2020 and ways you can implement them to your business.
The world keeps on changing, and if you think the whole backlinks-and-keywords-galore is going to get you at the top, think again. More than a third of smartphone users all over the globe utilize voice featurette on their devices once a week; it's predicted that in two years' time from now, half of the homes in the US will have a smart speaker of some sort. What does this mean, exactly? Well, essentially, the future is *in* voice search optimization.
If you don't work on the "voice search" aspect of your SEO strategy, you're not tapping into a massive market of possibilities that's soon to dictate the rules of the game. This may not happen today, this month or this quarter, but speech will take over text search soon, so better hop on the SEOland train while it's still in the station.
Ideas? Okay. For example, you could make use of Amazon Polly, a service that turns text into lifelike speech so the people who visit your page can literally hear your text instead of reading it. Research shows that this will make the visitors linger around your page longer, and that's always a win when it comes to optimization.
Shoot for the Featured Snippets
You know those little "answer boxes" that appear before organically top-ranked websites? Those are pretty important if you want to dominate the results page. To get up there, start:
- Using long-tail keywords in your content
- Choosing title tags that match keywords for that post
- Phrasing your questions and answers around search terms your readers use
- Making those answers as short and precise as you can (the opposite applies to word count)
Construct the main question your post answers carefully, and give a good summary of the whole thing in the first paragraph. Think of the best ways to put your story into words and give your readers a reason to click on "read more" and get to your storified landing page.
Don't Forget About Your Old Content!
Don't think that "Voice search and long-tail keywords" applies only to your 2020 posts and blog content. You have to go back, edit your old content, keep it updated and current. After all, once you build a house or buy a car, your work is far from done, right? You have to maintain it properly, take care of it so you can enjoy its benefits for years to come.
The same principle applies to search engine optimization! Once you write a lovely, speech-friendly, optimized article, blog or whatever piece of content after your liking, check out your old content and improve it accordingly. Remember, SEO work is never done.
Everything Is Connected - Immersive Multi-Platform Approach
You have to go all in to convince Google overlords that you're worthy of being "the first". Be active on each and every relevant social platform: Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, LinkedIn, and so on with posts, blogs, comments, videos, podcasts, and everything else in-between. Strive for engagement and relevance, and be aware that only one "line of attack" won't get you to the top.
Keep in mind the fact that longer posts tend to rank higher when it comes to both voice and web searches, so… We're sorry to break it to you, but 2020 marks the official retirement of the "quantity over quality" dilemma. You have to do both and to do them well in the name of getting and keeping those eyeballs (and earlobes) on you.
Smartphones Run the Game
User experience is a crucial part of your success story.
Think about it - with everything you are doing in a day, there's hardly much time to type-browse for the information you need to find. Instead, you'll probably reach for your smartphone first and say what you need. Then, when you find the site that answers your question, if it's filled with "error" pages and takes ages to open, you'll hardly waste more than three seconds on it, right? Well, Google feels you.
In 2020 you won't get far if your site isn't quick to load and filled with content that was created, updated and optimized with mobile devices in mind. The days of 404 error messages and patiently waiting for your page to load are long gone - and our patience is gone with it.
There's No Shame in Outsourcing
Your best bet for search engine optimization in 2020 sounds something like this:
- Optimize for voice and mobile
- Create long(ish) comprehensive posts
- Update aged content with care
- Use all the social platforms at your disposal to put the word out
- Monitor your online presence constantly
- Make sure your site is functioning correctly and easy to use
These few tasks sound like a demanding to-do list on their own, not to mention the fact that these are incredibly simplified instructions. And the sad truth is that you could tinker with the content for hours on end, truly implement everything advised above, and still miss something that would be obvious to an experienced professional. There are a million other factors you have to consider if you want to do this correctly.
The "one-size fits all" SEO strategy, unfortunately, doesn't exist anymore. These days, the algorithms are super intelligent and designed to follow humans' thought processes and browsing habits. With that in mind, make sure you at least consult an SEO specialist for a piece of advice or two. Check out the storifyme guys, they may help.
Some Things Never Change: Patience
No matter whether you're tackling it alone or with a hired pro, SEO success hides in well thought out approach and long term strategy, not a few handy hacks or tips and tricks. Establishing and upkeeping a prosperous online presence is a full-time job with a "slow and steady wins the race" mindset. For better or worse, that will stay the same in 2020, too. Oh, well.