SEO changes with the time and has come a long way from black hat days of link farming and keyword stuffing to the rise of machine learning AI’s. A machine learning system is a Google’s Rank brain that helps Google analyze and determine search results. Ranking metrics and the number of user experiences determine which information Google thinks best correlates to what a user is searching for.
The strategies in online marketing are as competitive or as quickly evolving as search engine optimization (SEO). SEO is always marked by a history of algorithm updates, new technologies, and new techniques to win the #1 position.
The rules of SEO are as ever evolving as a mutating virus!
As you well know, the rules of SEO are as ever evolving as a mutating virus. Old tactics won’t cut it anymore. All of us need to cut down on old tactics and work on evolving techniques to rank on top in 2018. Listed are the TOP 10 SEO trends that are in buzz for 2018 which will definitely set you on your way to becoming a trending name on the web. #1 in 2018.
#1 Personalization of Search
These days search engine search results are more personalized, specific to the particular user. Meaning search engines show results that are tailor-made for the user and “personal” according to their requirements. For E.g.:- Jazz dancing classes, Jazz dancing classes near me schedule etc.
Besides the generic search results, search engines include results based on the information they have about the user, such as:
The 3 main pillars of personalization being:
- Location. Search engines personalize results according to the user’s location.
- Browsing history. Search engines learn your interests and preferences from your browsing history. This influences the results Google will show you.
- Device. Search engine results are device specific. Pages are very different on the desktop and mobile devices. This is because pages are ranked according to the device being used to browse. Mobile-friendly pages rank higher on mobile devices but are relegated to oblivion on desktop devices and vice versa.
#2 Voice search
Voice Search will significantly impact SEO and is projected to be greater than 50% of all searches. Because we can speak faster than we can type, voice searches will be longer and more natural.
#3 Falling in (Brand) Love through engaging content
SEO trends that you could use in 2018 to rank your page in Google are brand loyalty. It’s an endless buzzword in the marketing community and has been for years now, but what does it really mean? True brand loyalty is an enduring belief and trust in your brand – the kind that keeps them coming back as long as you keep providing the same level of value and authenticity that spurred the loyalty in the first place.
That’s right – brand loyalty is perfectly capable of flitting away. I know, it flies in the face of what we imagine when we hear “loyalty,” but it’s important to remember that loyalty in a consumer-driven world is earned over and over again, not a one-time win you can cash in on for the remainder of your existence as a business.
#4 Careful structuring of Rich Snippet
This has evolved into a very unlikely ranking hack as SEO best practices are emerging. Snippets. Yes, Rich Snippets, but not just any snippets. Rich Snippets. Perhaps before we go further, some quick definitions are in order. A snippet is the result search engines show on the results page for a query made. Here’s an example:
Rich snippets increase the click-through rate and don’t directly increase traffic and hence ranking.
#5 The Rise of “Linkless” Backlinks
This sounds like an oxymoron but yes, there is such a thing as a “linkless” backlink. And these are fast becoming strong ranking factors as we head into 2018.
Simply a mention of your name or brand by other web users is called as “linkless” backlink. Search engines pick these mentions and use them as trust signals. They work the same way that “real” links work, thus they are “linkless” backlinks.
“Duane koine, formerly Sr. Manager at Hango, points out that unlinked mentions can be just as strong a signal as regular links”. AssistantLink.com But if negative comments are made, quickly implements damage control measures.
#6 Natural Language Queries
As search engines evolve, they are making strides to making the search as natural as possible.
Enter natural language queries. This is the search that is carried out in everyday natural language. And it’s on the rise, typed or spoken.
Because it’s easier than keyword-based searches which may require different combinations of keywords before you get the right results, natural language queries are becoming popular.
Longer, complex queries can be processed by search engines these days.
#7 Link Building Is Still Your #1 SEO Hack
If you thought link building was dead, you are dead wrong. Contrary to all the fake news of link building is obsolete, it is still your number one SEO hack.
Link building still reigns supreme is because it’s the #1 trust factor as far long as search engines are concerned. And trust is important when it comes to ranking. Be warned though, not all links are good links. Speaking of links, it’s not the number of links but the quality of links that really matter.
#8 Increased Page Relevance
Page relevance will never become outdated as a ranking factor. Users will get the best experience possible on the web because search engines give importance to page relevance. That means showing relevant results.
When dealing with search engines, the term ‘relevance’ describes the extent to which the content of a website corresponds to the search term used”. Search Metrics.
When it comes to querying results search engines place great value on relevance. For example, when searching for kachori recipes, paneer recipes will not be included in the search results. Even if the paneer recipe tops in other ranking factors, because that page is not relevant to the search query, it will not appear.
In short, page relevance is decided by your content. To optimize for relevance:
- Publish more long-form content as opposed to short form.
- Cover your topic in detail.
- Don’t stick to a keyword, use synonyms and related phrases as well.
If your page is not relevant to the categories you want to rank for, your efforts of publishing efforts will be waste of time.
#9 Page Speed
According to Google, page speed is a major ranking factor. Slow loading pages 3 seconds or more have detrimental consequences:
- Search engines crawl fewer pages.
- Increased bounce rate.
- Time on page is lower.
#10 Content is king
There is No doubt ‘Content is king’, and you should never underestimate the power of content. It is the only thing that always paces with the trend. It is the very first thing that impacts your SEO the most. If you’re writing quality content, you could increase your ranking in Google.
Good content can engage more and more audience without putting efforts. A user who reads your article could share your article on social media.
As you know that content is everywhere, either you look at social media sites or any blog/website without content, you can’t even imagine the existence of these sites.
So, you can’t ignore the existence of content. That means more quality you provide your content, the higher rank you will get in Google.
SEO landscape is dynamic and there is a greater need to stay in touch with the changing trends and adopt optimization techniques that help you boost your online visibility. This year, focus your efforts on voice search, personalization, engagement and don’t forget to think ‘mobile’ in your SEO strategy.