As we have already reached the second month of 2018, it’s high time we start optimizing our websites according to the latest SEO trends and expectations in 2018.
Of course, time and again, there are a lot of trends introduced by various Search engine entities but our major focus has always been on the giant, Google which conquers more than 65% of the search market, second being Bing holding approximately 20% of the market share.
With increasing competition with businesses around the globe who have become aware of the importance of being found online, here are 5 most important SEO trends for 2018 to rank higher on the search engine.
1. Secured Websites rank higher on Google – Https Websites
To have a secured website a.k.a have a https website, one needs to acquire a SSL certificate. As per SSL.com, “SSL (Secure Sockets Layer) is the standard security technology for establishing an encrypted link between a web server and a browser. This link ensures that all data passed between the web server and browsers remain private and integral.”
In the month of June 2017, as per the research and observations by Moz, over 55% of sites that appeared on the first page on Google were secured, implying, were https websites. In case your website isn’t secured, the Google browser, Chrome shows warning that it is a non-secured website.
So, if you do not already have a SSL certificate, it’s time you acquire one.
2. Machine learning and Artificial Intelligence is taking charge
Google makes use of a machine learning technology known as RankBrain to recognize patterns and user intent. Basis the data, it analyses the user behavior and engagement with various web pages in its SERP listings.
RankBrain was launched in the year 2015 and has been actively used by Google globally. It is also claimed to be the third most important ranking factor, other two being the content and user experience.
3. Mobile Responsive Websites for better indexation
Over 50% of the searches performed on Google are through mobile phones, hence, google gives importance to mobile responsive sites on its SERPs. More so, AMP (Accelerated Mobile Pages) are given preference over the non-AMPs.
Basically, the AMP format enables faster site loads when clicked through a search result and therefore, also assure a better experience to the user.
An Obvious Point: So, if you want to have more relevant traffic and want to appear on relevant keyword searches, you got to have a killer mobile responsive website!
4. Voice Activated Search
The trend for voice-activated searches is increasing faster than ever. With the availability of voice recognition software being in-built in mobile devices and home speakers, there’s no question with the way voice-activated searches are rising.
To rank on voice-activated searches, you need to be visible on featured snippets which in-turn means that you need to be ranking well organically.
Pay Attention to the Basics: Use text-heavy and highly structured content that can be easily read and understood by the search engine crawlers and visitors. Looking at the current scenario of over 40% adult searches being voice activated and teens being 55% already, it is predicted that by 2020, half of the searches will be voice activated.
5. User Experience
Google and Facebook have made it evidently clear that their focus is on the user. And therefore in 2018, one of the quintessential elements of SEO will be User Experience. This implies that the websites shall need to ensure that their content and navigation is user-friendly and delivers a smooth UI to the visitors.
Better the user experience with the page, more shall be the engagement rate which implies that the site shall appear better in the rankings. The various factors that play an important role in improving the user experience are:
- Site Load Time (speed of the site)
- Ease of Navigation (menu)
- High Quality and Structured Content
- Mobile Responsive Pages
- AMP enabled
- Cleaner website design
- Visible Call to Actions
- Image Optimization
- Fast Servers
- Streamlined Code
For Your Information: If you want to deliver a good experience to your user, ensure that you tick mark this checklist.
Now, that you got the idea on latest SEO trends that Google shall pay attention in 2018, gear up and incorporate the necessary changes to your site for better ranking and traffic. With these trends, you shall be better positioned in terms of your SEO ranking.
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