While the internet started from the bottom as far back as a few decades, today, any business that wants to stay on the top to get the lion’s share of leads must have an online presence.
According to statistics, the online advertising industry is currently valued at approximately $400 billion annually, more prominent than print magazine and TV ads. So what are the upcoming SEO trends in 2021?
What update is Google (the search engine giant) planning to roll out starting in a couple of weeks? And what impact can these updates have on the industry?
Let’s find out about the upcoming SEO trends in 2021.
1. Page Experience Ratings (May 2021)
A new (not too new) ranking factor will become more relevant come May 2021 – the page experience signal.
The page experience tracks how users feel when they are on your website. Metrics used to access this experience include the overall engagement, mobile experience, security (HTTPS), and more.
Although these terms were typically classified under the “general ranking factors”, in March, they’ll fall in the “page experience” category.
Additionally, Google might include the “core web vitals” in-page experience.
Core vitals are user-centric metrics that determine the overall user experience—these metrics measures the web page loading speed, interactive and visual stability. The first two items (loading speed, interactive) are pretty self-explanatory, so no diving into that.
However, visual stability defines how sophisticated the site layouts can be. For example, if you continuously struggle with closing pop-up ads on a site, that is a wrong visual stability signal.
Google’s main goal of prioritizing the “page experience” is to provide more engaging, higher-quality content to users. Sites with impressively higher page experience will be more stable, secure, mobile-friendly, load faster, and more, to dish out an incredible user experience.
All of these points make it more important now than before to engage a trustworthy SEO company.
2. Non-AMP contents may rank in top stories
Another self-advertised reason Google claimed to bring the page experience into the limelight is to help non-AMP content get featured in top stories for mobile phones.
Expectedly, Google might roll out this update in May 2021, so SEO experts should be prepared for an all-time busy month ahead.
3. Google is prioritizing the mobile experience (March Update)
Mobile-first indexing is not a new item in Google’s ranking factor. The item was initially introduced to solve some widespread issues as most users now access the web from their mobile.
Unfortunately, mobile and desktop content do not always align in contexts. Google traditionally indexes the desktop version however that has been changing over the past two years.
The difference in contexts creates a difference between the ranking website and mobile contexts accessed by mobile users. To solve this problem, Google is going to implement mobile-first indexing as the primary rank factor without consideration of the desktop experience in the future.
This means the website’s mobile version will be indexed first before the desktop version. Contents will be tested for mobile-friendly and eligibility before ranking on Google.
This would have been massively implemented right from the onset, but, Google decided to roll out the updates “one step at a time”
It started with allowing webmasters to change their website ranking to “mobile-first.” Next, it was followed by allowing them to make mobile-first the default option. Google is expected to launch this “mobile always” update in March 2021.
In other words, your website and content indexing will change in March. However, we do not expect a magically stable website. Certain instability might show up during this transition process.
Thankfully, Google published certain guidelines to assist users to experience smooth navigation into this new update.
- Ensure your mobile site loads faster.
- Websites must be visible to Google bots and crawlers.
- Ensure that you fill out the required meta tags on your landing page’s mobile and desktop versions.
- Ensure all content can be seen by the website visitor.
- Make sure your robot.txt file is properly configured with no blocked URL.
- Setup or check with Google Search Console that text and buttons have enough space around them for users.
- Check the alt tag of your site’s videos and images.
4. Prominent SEO trends
Apart from the upcoming updates, certain SEO trends are becoming more prominent in the industry.
While these trends have been around for a couple of years, today, their popularity is accelerating on the SEO frontend. Let’s investigate these prominent SEO trends:
i). Voice search
Voice search was close to non-existent about 5 years ago. But, the recent proliferation of voice assistants such as Google assistance and Alexa has skyrocketed the way people use voice search on Google.
The research confirmed that voice search revenue is expected to go beyond quadruple from 2 billion in 2017 to 40 billion in 2022.
This popularity might pose both a benefit and a threat to traditional SEO. For example, ranking the first position in voice search could become more valuable than on traditional search.
This could be the right time for webmasters to take advantage of this prominent trend.
ii). Featured snippets
Google continues to introduce different types of featured snippets ranging from news to tutorials and recipes. The goal is to make searches faster for its users.
It is time websites started implementing this trend as it increases the chances of getting featured, which might potentially drive traffic to a site. Remember, getting featured does not automatically guarantee traffic on your site, but it helps.
iii). text Contents
The internet is already flooded with blogs and landing pages. Ranking with decent keywords with notable traffic is challenging.
Many agencies are trying to leverage their reach by integrating nontextual content. Infographics are an impressive way of engaging the audience and ranking in search engines. Video is another trend on the promising side of the spectrum.
The benefit is that it is easier to get traffic from Youtube, which is less competitive than the traditional organic search engine. According to research, YouTube makes up to $15 billion for Google annually.
Videos often appear in the top 10 or 20 search results as Google favors its own platform. Another reason to consider more videos on your website is because of the increased emphasis on “Time on the Page” that video tends to produce.
You don’t want to ignore this platform.
iv). UX SEO
Gone are the days when SEO is all about the meta titles and tags. Today, SEO requires a touch of expertise from different fields like software development, web design, marketing, and creative writing to deliver a perfect output.
The UX SEO framework is gaining huge traction lately. It is all about optimizing user experiences by engagement on a website.
UX is not only about your site’s traffic but how well visitors flow with your site. We’ve seen a ton of testimonials on UX SEO. Considerable increases in traffic and “Time on the Page” – a strong ranking factor, have been seen by many website owners.
I think it is high time webmasters started taking UX SEO seriously.
v). Local SEO
Local SEO is a critical aspect of digital marketing because many people look up local results for their search queries. Today, many businesses are tapping into the benefits of local SEO.
A recent “Chat Meter” research confirmed a 900 percent increase in “near me” and “today” on search queries in the past two years, with “near me” increasing by 200 percent. 96 percent of Google searches are local.
The following tips can help master local SEO:
- Take advantage of Google My Business by setting up an account and checking you are in all the relevant categories for your business.
- Integrate mobile and voice search optimization.
- Research and consider local keywords with your website content.
- Utilize online business directories or citations.
vi). Long Tail Keyword
Surprisingly, Long tail keywords make up 70 percent of online searches found in numerous studies by people such as Neil Patel.
This could be a smart way to outrank competitions. They provide a clear insight into how people look up info on the web.
Long-tail keyword plays a critical role in website conversion rates. Here is how to find long-tail keywords:
- Take advantage of Google suggestions in searches to find your long-tail keywords.
- Use Google-related searches.
- Has your content optimized for how-to questions?
- Check topics on Wikipedia, eHow, or other Q&A sources.
It is important to stay abreast of the update to maintain or scale website ranking. Reading about the update isn’t enough.
However, we hope we’ve been able to make this article as comprehensive as it can be. Now is the time to get prepared for these upcoming changes because it’s not going to be an easy ride.
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Tim Stokes is a veteran of the business, a QLD government-registered business mentor, and a marketing expert. He unlocks the hidden potential in marketing and businesses for faster growth. You can check him out on his website: https://www.profittrans4mations.com.au/