The Top SEO Trends for 2018

(February 13, 2018) – Keeping up with the latest trends can be incredibly difficult, especially with more social platforms and new Google Algorithms being invented. As a business owner, it can be hard to tell which trend is right for you.
Looking back at 2017, there was no doubt that video and social advertising took center stage. However, even at the end of 2017, we began to see these trends emerge:
  • Shifting from desktop to mobile
  • Voice Searches
  • Better user experience – dwell time and bounce rate
  • Credible sites with easily found information

What is Google’s RankBrain?

Google is getting smarter, which means your overuse of keywords, tags, and linking within your content isn’t tricking anyone. In 2018, it is all a out the users experience and how well you are able to answer your audiences questions.
When it comes to 2018 trends, a lot are based around Google’s new algorithm- RankBrain.

Mobile Friendly Websites

So, let’s break down the top trends for you.
Out with the old and in with mobile.
You may assume that because you do all your work on the computer that your target audience is also finding you through their desktop. Unfortunately, that is no longer the case. According to Search Engine Land, 60% off all searches are done through mobile. Now, here is the catch. You may be thinking to yourself “Okay, what’s the big deal? People can still search and find my website.” My question for you is: “Is your website formatted for Mobile?” If you don’t know the answer to that, the answer is most likely no.

How to Improve User Experience on Websites

This leads us to the next trend: User Experience
Think about how you interact with websites on a daily. Do you stay on websites that take time to load? Are you willing to scroll and search through pages to find the answer to your question? Your answer is most likely: no.
Now, there is nothing wrong with wanting information quickly and easily to understand, which is why Google is taking dwell time and bounce rate very seriously. The longer a person stays on your page the better, the quicker they bounce the worse your rankings will be.
It is important to have website and pages that are user friendly. You want to provide information from the beginning and answer questions. Users that see a description with a short answer to their question are more likely to click on your page to learn more. If your website and articles are vague and require clicking and scrolling to get to the answer, or if you just wrote an article to pump out keywords in hopes of ranking, your SEO luck has run out.
Google will now be looking at:
  • Your sites speed (Meaning load time)
  • The readability of content
  • Navigation (Are pages easily found?)
  • The architecture of information (Is the most important information at the beginning?)
  • Page Design (Readers and potential clients are likely to stay on a page longer that is broken down with short sentences, pictures, graphics, and videos)

Therefore, creating a website and a page that has all of the above will increase dwell time, and thus, improve your Google rankings.

What is a Reputable Site?

User experience goes hand in hand with the credibility of sites.

Again, Google is able to recognize pages that are relevant and answer the search query the quickest. Pages can no longer be created with the intent to rank. In other words, you can’t stuff in a ton of keywords and links into content pages that offer little information to the user. Before, these pages would rank high, but Google’s new algorithm is ranking personalized content higher.

This isn’t saying that optimization won’t help you. YOU MUST STILL OPTIMIZE PAGES! However, the information within the content is just as important.

The Rise of Voice Searches

The final trend to keep in mind in 2018 is the rise of voice searches. As more people use voice searches link Siri and Alexa, it provides advantages to websites. Create content with the questions your customers are asking in mind.
How are you able to show up in a snippet or voice search answer? By using long-tail keywords and structure content broken down into shorter sentences.