With 2018 well underway, we hope that you’ve been thinking about SEO. Whether you’re a small business looking to leverage local SEO into revenue or a major company wanting to stay up-to-date with the latest trends, it’s important to pay attention to the SEO landscape. SEO tactics change on a regular basis. As Google continues to tinker with its algorithm, SEO experts must continue to tinker with their tactics when it comes to SEO. With a new year underway, it’s time to look at some of the top SEO trends for 2018.
SEO Trends for 2018
The Mobile Monster
One of the biggest SEO trends for 2018 has to do with the importance of mobile when it comes to your website. With Google’s AMP project trying to push more and more company’s to think mobile-first, optimizing your site is a crucial step in creating a successful brand. Now when you search for a topic or keyword on Google using your mobile device, Google will rank sites using AMP in their Top stories section of each search result page. Any story you choose will load blazing fast, which in turn, helps the SEO for your business as it will reduce bounce rates and lead to higher conversion rates. You can even use website auditor tools to test your new mobile pages to ensure that they’re up to snuff.
In other words, you can expect Google to gradually put more and more weight behind mobile, and signals that used to only impact mobile searches could shortly impact all searches.
The Power of Voice
Voice search will go hand-in-hand with mobile search when it comes to SEO trends for 2018. One in five mobile search queries currently comes from voice search — a number that is likely to rise as Google Assistant-enabled devices such as Google Home continue to grow in popularity.
Google has announced that they’ll be taking voice search into consideration when ranking their SERPs. This means that you’ll need to write content that is voice-friendly. An example of this is writing content that will answer questions, such as, “What is local SEO?” or “How do I link build?” These types of queries will help your brand to come up more frequently during voice searches. Keyword research is vital to optimizing your content for voice search, so make sure you’re putting in the time and effort.
Machine Learning and AI
With RankBrain just celebrating its second birthday, Google’s machine-learning AI system has been helping to crawl and structure search results pages. As RankBrain grows older, you can expect more and more reliance on this system from Google. As Google continues to embrace AI and incorporate more of it into their search algorithms, we can expect search results to start behaving in less predictable ways. This will not always be a good thing, but it is something we should be prepared for. AI shouldn’t change how you approach SEO for your brand, but it’s certainly something to be aware of. Eventually, instead of announced updates on a monthly basis from Google, we can expect continuous changes from the machine-learning algorithm.
When it comes to SEO trends for 2018, this one is less clear than the others. Bing has already stated that they’ve begun to track and factor linkless mentions into their search results. While Google hasn’t confirmed whether or not they will consider factoring linkless mentions, they have taken a patent on an algorithm that will do exactly that. If this ends up the case, you’ll also want to explore tactics that will generate brand mentions and not just backlinks.
In Google’s hope to make the SERP more appealing, one of the biggest SEO trends for 2018 will be increased exposure of the featured snippet. Featured snippets satisfy the user’s need for a simple answer to a question, and the displayed content is taken from web pages that Google interprets as being the most suitable for answering the user’s question. As these featured snippets become more and more prevalent, you’ll want to make sure your pages are optimized for Google.
What do you think will be an SEO trend for 2018? Looking for an awesome team to join? Check out our job openings today!