Google used to handle 10,000 search queries a day. Today, it's handling 40,000 every second!
As more websites pop up online, it can feel difficult to stand out from the crowd. By using search engine optimization (SEO), however, you can help your website rank at the top. However, Google's search engine algorithm changes all the time.
If you plan on using SEO for growth this year, you need to keep up with the trends!
Here are 10 of the important SEO trends you'll need to utilize in 2020. With these trends, you can get ahead of the competition. The higher you rank, the more visitors you'll attract.
Boost your ranking with these 10 best SEO practices for 2020.
1. User Intent
What are customers searching for when they use Google? Between its artificial intelligence and machine learning capabilities, Google has become smarter than ever. As a result, Google uses semantic search to provide users with results based on:
- The relationship between words in a search query
- The context of the user's search
- User intent
If you don't understand user intent, or why your customer is searching, you'll fail to provide them with the content they need.
Make sure to complete thorough audience research. Who are your customers and what are they searching for? Then, use that information to lead you with these nine remaining SEO trends.
2. Voice and Mobile Searches
Google focused its attention on mobile-first indexing in March 2018. Since then, Google has used the mobile version of company websites to determine rankings. Companies that don't have a mobile-optimized version of their site, however, are falling behind.
After all, more people are conducting searches on their phones. In fact, some of these searches are hands-free!
Experts believe that 50% of all searches will occur through a voice assistant like Siri or Alexa this year. With that in mind, you'll need to adjust your keyword strategy accordingly.
First, determine how consumers are phrasing their search queries. You can use SEMRush, Google Keyword Planner, or Google Trends to start. Then, use that longtail phrase at the beginning of your content.
Provide consumers with a quick, brief answer to their query at the beginning of the blog post. Voice assistants will then offer this answer to their users.
Your SEO 2020 plan needs to consider voice search. Otherwise, your content likely isn't appearing for these hands-free consumers.
3. Zero-Click Searches
Google now has the ability to display the answer consumers need on the search page. These zero-click searches include featured snippets, knowledge graphics, and Google's Local Pack.
The local pack displays business locations that are nearby to customers. In order to rank in the local pack, make sure your Google My Business information is up-to-date.
Use your Google Search Console to learn more about which searches are leading to website visitors. Then, use those search terms within your content to attract even more traffic.
4. Featured Snippets
One of the zero-click searches, featured snippets, is becoming increasingly popular. These searches show blocks of information at the very top of a search page. Ranking above organic searches, these snippets appear as:
You can start ranking for featured snippets using the same strategy you use for voice search. You should also structure your content using schemas, which will help Google find your data.
5. Local SEO
Local SEO among some of the top SEO practices you can't go without. Improving your local SEO strategy will help you attract more people to your business.
First, make sure to use location-based keywords. Keep your Google My Business listing updated with relevant information, too. You can also ask happy customers for reviews, which will improve your local ranking and brand credibility.
6. Hyper-Targeted Content
As Google becomes smarter, you'll need a smarter SEO strategy, too. When using SEO for growth, everything connects back to your customers.
Try creating content that's focused on what your readers need and want. How can you help customers improve their lives? What problems are they facing that you can help solve?
Don't neglect the power of longtail keywords. Longtail keywords are more focused on niche concepts. That way, you're focused on providing your audience with answers they're already searching for.
7. Authority and Expertise
Google priorities websites that demonstrate authority and expertise. If you lack either, people don't have a reason to trust your brand.
First, improve your credibility by covering a range of topics that are relevant to your readers. Make sure to use research, statistics, and studies that back up your content and showcase your expertise.
Then, improve your authority by using links from already-credible resources.
As your authority and expertise improve, your ranking will, too.
8. Machine Learning
Google uses three mechanisms (that we're aware of).
The first is Neural Matching, which is used to understand user intent. RankBrain, the second, adjusts search pages based on the user's unique behaviors. BERT is the algorithm Google uses to analyze the structure of a search query.
In order to respond to Google's growing machine learning capabilities, keep writing strong content that's relevant to your readers.
9. Video Content
By this year, video content will account for 80% of all internet traffic. That's likely because 90% of consumers say videos are helpful while they're making a buying decision. In fact, landing pages with videos can increase conversions by 80%!
Video content is becoming more valuable. It's an easy way to communicate complex ideas with your customers. Not only that, but videos are also fun, engaging, and easy to consume!
Google has noticed how much consumers are relying on videos for information, too.
If you plan on using SEO for growth this year, don't neglect to add video content to your SEO strategy. One of the easiest ways to strengthen your video marketing strategy is to utilize YouTube.
After all, YouTube is the second-largest search engine behind Google.
While many people use YouTube for entertainment, it's also educational. If you want consumers to learn more about your product or service, post it on YouTube. Then, make sure to use your SEO tactics to increase views.
Your focus keyword should appear in the title and description. Don't forget to use relevant tags as well. To strengthen your optimization, try adding a transcript that includes your target keywords, too.
By adding video content to your SEO strategy this year, you can attract more viewers to your website or YouTube page. As you engage and inform viewers, you can turn more of them into prospective customers!
10. Consider Quality
Google prioritizes high-quality, unique content. As you use the best SEO practices, focus on quality, not quantity.
Make sure your content matches the search intent. Mix up your content, too. Try a blog post one week and an infographic the next.
Don't forget those videos as well.
Then, let your authority and expertise shine within your content.
SEO for Growth: 10 SEO Search Trends to Utilize in 2020
Using SEO for growth is easy when you're aware of the trends. Keep up with Google's algorithm and the latest SEO trends throughout the year. That way, you can get a step ahead of the competition (and rank ahead of them, too)!
Need help improving your SEO strategy this year? Request a free consultation from our team today!