SEO is known to be an effective way of attracting new audiences to your website or social media pages. Search Engine Optimization constantly evolves and so it might be difficult for some to stay on top of trends 24/7.
Around 70-80% of users will typically focus on organic results and ignore those listings that are paid for. What they aren’t aware of is that 28% of those searches are sure to convert and result in a purchase. Metrics such as backlinks, social shares and traffic are important to keep track of and require special attention.
Google My Business
When users search for stores through Google, they’re most likely looking for something that is close to where they live or work. Google My Business’ popularity has started to pick up in recent years as businesses can share important details about their company on a public platform that’s easily accessible. Google also continues to add features for businesses to optimize so that potential customers can get the best search result that’s related to their business.
First, you need to sign up on GMB and claim your business. You will then be able to fill out more information about your company – precise location, operating hours, and any promotions that you may be offering. By filling out your details, it will allow your name to pop up in any relevant searches. A Google My Business listing that’s well-optimized can make a significant difference in your local SEO rankings – Google will see that people are clicking on your business page and can even increase your rankings!
Google‘s ‘EAT’ Principle
It’s well-known that Google LOVES good quality content and emphasizes that this is critical for high ranking access. Creators are encouraged to refer to the EAT principle – expertise, authoritativeness and trustworthiness. These three factors are useful in determining whether a web page has content that’s high in quality and content that is useful for users.
To make sure that you’re sharing quality content, you can start off by creating buyer personas that help you understand the type of content your customers actually value and respond to. You can then create content that fits what your users are looking for.
Google is known to suggest local businesses to users based on their proximity. In 2020, we saw local SEO performing less due to COVID-19 and people working from home – but this isn’t a reason to pay less attention to local SEO.
Google is constantly updating its algorithm when it comes to local search to implement new methods of filtering through data to offer more opportunities for different businesses. Optimizing your local SEO is vital if you want users to find out about you.
Tools such as GMB helps you analyze your SEO performance and track local competitors so that you can improve your optimization and strategies. Google continues to add new features to GMB – you can now publish posts, add your products and services and update store timings as well.
Improved User Experience (UX)
Improving the experience for users is something that has always been important. However, in 2021, we will see the need for better UX becoming more prominent.
Google will start to focus on user-centered metrics in order to improve usability – this includes load time, interactivity and stability of content. Websites that can deliver an improved user experience will, in turn, be awarded better search visibility.
This is an opportunity to look at your website from a user’s point of view. View your web pages on different mobile devices and your desktop. Identify if there are any pages that are loading slowly or whether you have content stability or not. Are you facing the same issues on a mobile device? Are images loading correctly on mobile?
You need to prioritize the user experience in 2021 as it creates value for your customers and will impact your business metrics. Here’s how you can improve your UX to boost SEO:
- Analyze your bounce rate on a daily basis and assess the reasons for high/low rates. Identify whether you’re using unrelated keywords, or whether the loading speed is slower than you would have liked.
- Create menus with clear and precise information so that users do not struggle to navigate through your website.
- Make use of concise headlines that are interesting enough to make users want to know more about your products and services.
With everything in digital marketing, video content constantly proves to be more engaging than traditional forms of content. It has the ability to encourage users to stay on your website for longer and engages with them in better ways. The best video content involves one that has a story that will engross users.
Videos are also a more creative way to showcase your products. It might not be the cheapest investment, but it allows you to advertise your business in ways simple text and imagery couldn’t. It also has a massive impact on ROI! Users are typically drawn more toward videos as they’re easier to digest and saves time reading long content.
Voice Search Optimization
Optimization for voice search is tricky to nail. With the rise in popularity of assistants such as Siri and Alexa, users are using voice activation more often to search on Google.
Voice search is predicted to grow in 2021, which means that businesses need to adapt and optimize their content for voice search. With your content, you will need to answer specific questions that focus on natural language and long-tail keywords.
Since Google has rolled out the BERT update, the search engine has become more conversational and can interpret user intent. The search engine experience has evolved so much over the years to accommodate voice search. Content will need to be written to consider the user’s intent, rather than just a string of keywords that are relevant to your niche.
Create content that is aligned with your customer’s intent – use clear sentences with natural language (the way people tend to talk in real life). For example, if you sell snack boxes, you would want to talk about the main ingredients and contents of the box, whether it’s healthy, etc.
Implement FAQs around natural queues so that potential customers don’t spend too much time trying to find specific information. Many users will try to find out details about cost, location, etc, and it would be helpful for both parties if this information was readily available.
Even in 2020, there are websites out there that haven’t been efficiently optimized for mobile devices. Even though we are in the age of technology, many users are on their phones more often than a desktop. Most of the time, users will find your website through their phones – more than 58% of Google searches are done on a mobile/handheld device (tablets and smartphones).
The trend of mobile searches is only increasing and if your web pages aren’t optimized, you risk losing potential customers.
Users are no longer too invested in advertisements. They want to hear the opinions of real people like them – they depend on the reviews and opinions from well-known influencers in their countries.
17% of businesses will spend over 50% of marketing funds to work with influencers. This includes companies from a variety of industries. These are important statistics to be aware of because it impacts the way users interact with your brand. Users nowadays typically stray away from promotional materials and would much rather focus on content that’s informative and from a real person whom they trust.
Influencer marketing provides businesses with unconventional ways of generating traffic – influencers can help businesses enhance their reach and boost their online visibility. Of course, you may not see a return on investment immediately, but it is an important method of marketing to consider when you think about the wants and needs of users today.
Partner with influencers who specialize in your niche in order to have the best chance at success. They will already have a following that would be interested in your product; an audience that you might not have been able to tap into just yet. A newer audience makes for great potential customers!
Semantics refers to the study of words and the effect of their implementation when used in the right context. Semantic search is performed by search engines in order to understand the relevance of the search with already existing content so that it can be served in perfect order. By improving a website’s semantic search value, business owners can boost the visibility of their business.
Zero-Click Search Results
This refers to a search engine result page that answers a user’s query at the top of the page so that the user doesn’t need to click through to another website. A zero-click search is the most satisfying for users, as they don’t have to spend time rifling through web pages to find the answers they’re looking for.
Businesses need to adapt to this by offering something that Google isn’t. Consider what users might be expecting from online content when they search for your industry. You want to give them information that’s accurate and detailed, but information that they don’t have to spend hours looking for. You need to create content that is worth the clicks.