Using the right keywords, analyzing user data, working on inbound links, and continuously sharing high-quality content – those are the golden standards of SEO practices. But those are just generic names for specific practices that can take many shapes and forms. As time goes by, SEO methods evolve into more sophisticated forms.
Needless to stay, you have to stay on top of the trends. All the time! You have to follow the latest trends, so you’ll keep pace with the toughest competitors. Moreover, you want to predict the future of search engine optimization practices, so you’ll get ahead of the competition.
That’s possible only when you’re aware of the latest trends. So let’s discuss five SEO trends to keep in mind for 2019, shall we?
Google’s algorithm can identify historical information, current context, and the query’s intent. That’s a complex process that results with a detailed and specific answer to the user’s question.
For example, Google can recognize the user’s intent to buy something when they search with a specific keyword. That’s why it includes websites that sell relevant products in the search results. From there on, the user will also start getting ads based on that intent to buy something.
When the user has the intent to use an online service, the algorithm will recognize it. Practice yoga at home, for example, will result with several subscription services that offer such an opportunity.
If the user has an intention to learn, Google will launch high-profile websites that offer relevant information.
* Instead of choosing random keywords to rank for, you’ll need to think about the intention that Google users have when typing those keywords in the search engine.
* When choosing keywords, think about those that lead your target audience towards a specific action. In other words, think about conversions. When a person wants to become your customer or users, what would they type on Google?
* Write content about the solutions you provide. That’s what people use Google for; they search for solutions.
* Most of all, research your audience. How do they describe your products or services? What exact terms would they use? You’ll find these details if you look at questions and answers on Quora and Reddit, as well as social media and blog post comments.
AI enters the world of SEO, big time!
RankBrain, Google’s algorithm learning artificial intelligence system, has been in use since October 2015. But we’ve still not seen its real influence over SEO practices.
Marketing experts and SEO practitioners may not be into algorithms. So let’s explain what RankBrain and artificial intelligence really mean for their jobs. This system helps Google engineers to choose the best content for different keywords categories. Before this, the engineers relied on manual tests to slightly change individual keyword categories as a test and monitor the user experience. Now, that task is being automated.
So let’s allow Google’s engineers to do what they do. Their job is now easier. Good for them. But what does that mean for your work in search engine optimization?
* You don’t have to wait for the manual processes to move up in the results. If your content is good enough, RankBrain will implement the change in the results much faster than before.
* RankBrain ranks the best content for individual keyword categories. It processes search results throughout billions of pages so it can provide the most relevant information for the specific query.
So what do you to do to appeal to artificial intelligence?
* Focus on individual keywords for the landing pages. It’s not necessary to stuff the page with multiple keywords since RankBrain focuses on keyword categories. A single keyword that falls into a certain category will efficiently bring you traffic.
* The keyword you choose shouldn’t be too long. Choose a medium-tail keyword, which would fit into several long-tail keywords in the specific category.
* Create awesome content. That rule is more important than ever. Artificial intelligence may be artificial, but it’s smarter than you think. Google’s algorithm is very capable to evaluate the quality and relevance of your content. The good news is that you can easily rely on a cheap essay writing service that would cover the writing and editing part for you.
Let’s make an experiment. We’ll type a random keyword on Google. We’ll take ocean life as an example. We get the usual listings of web pages relevant to that keyword, but we also get something else in the results:
It’s the Q&A grid!
If you ask a specific question, this box is even more prominent. For example, let’s ask how many species are there in the ocean? This is what we get:
It’s a box with a direct answer, followed by the Q&A grid.
It means that Google likes giving precise answers to its audience. It also predicts the other questions they might have, so it makes their search much more convenient.
For you, this means that you have to provide answers to specific questions through your content. It’s a strategy that improves your visibility in Google’s results.
* Develop content that contains questions. When you’re working on a particular topic, including how, when, why, and wherein the subheadings. Then, answer those questions in details.
* Structure the answers well. You’ll notice that brief, specific answers with bullet points get the priority in the answer box.
* When answering a question, think of related questions that the users might have. You don’t have to make them up; just use Google and you’ll see the related questions. Answer them through your content!
This trend is already big, but it’s getting bigger by the day.
In August 2017, Google shared a blog post that encouraged its users to type less and talk more. Google’s speech recognition supports, believe it or not, 119 language varieties. So the users simply speak to their devices and get their answers faster than ever before. No, autocorrect shenanigans; just pure convenience.
Simple: it means that you have to adjust your strategy according to the needs that this trend imposes. Speech is different from writing. People are saying entire sentences. So infusing your content with as many keywords as possible is a method that no longer works. Google wants to see logic!
* Get into the featured snippets. When the user asks a question, Google Assistant will read it from the answer box. That’s where you want to be!
* Focus on real context. Imagine you’re speaking in front of an audience and you invite people to ask questions. What would they ask and how would you answer? The answers should be very clear and direct.
You already know you have to produce high-quality content if you want to get anywhere near the first page of results. But when we look at all other SEO trends to keep in mind for 2019, we come down to a single realization: content marketing is more important than ever before.
Yes; the speed of your site matters. Yes; the visuals matter. But what matters the most is content, and it has to be better than ever before.
For example, let’s search for the keyword best running shoes on Google. What do we get in the results?
If you go through the results, you’ll find relevant, specific, and elaborate content. That’s what Google wants to show to its users.
It means that you need to invest in proper content development. Currently, that aspect of your SEO campaign is more important than ever.
When it comes to SEO, trends are not to be neglected. You won’t be doing these things just because everyone else is doing them. You’ll implement trends in your SEO campaign because that’s what the current conditions impose. Google is the boss. If you want to be featured in its results, you have to be aware of the rules and play by them.