Although a lot has changed since Google’s first SEO algorithm in 2000, the ideas behind the SEO techniques are still the same.
Put customers and users first — This is the driving force behind SEO and its ultimate goal; however, as technology progresses at an ever-increasing rate, how we use SEO in the future will change notably. Marketers, business/website owners, or anyone involved with the SEO process, should know about these changes in advance to help them succeed.
Here are 5 SEO trends that represent the present and future of SEO and that can help you increase your business’s ranking.
The Rise of Voice Search
With the rise of digital assistants, such as integrated Google Assistant and Siri and new home devices such as Alexa and Google Home, voice search is becoming increasingly prevalent.
How we use keywords and phrases will evolve as voice search becomes more common. Instead of using broken sentences or sequences of keywords, people will search for things using their normal speech patterns, likely posing search inquires as questions.
How results are sourced and presented within search engines will become more precise and concise.
Businesses and those interested in SEO should write their content in Q&A format to match the keywords and phrases people will likely use in voice search to prepare for these changes. This will help your business rank higher in search engines and help you increase traffic to your pages.
AI Presents Infinite Opportunities
Artificial intelligence (AI) will continue to improve and provide technological opportunities that were previously incomprehensible.
“Consider how much data companies already have on their customers; such as Facebook or Google,” said Jason Hindle, SEO manager for WriteMYX. “As the AI technology behind these platforms gets better and better, the technology will be able to take their demographical data, and all the data they’ve personally put into the website, to give even more targeted content, ads and media.”
As more people receive targeted and personalized content, the more they will come to expect it. To appear at the top of the pages, businesses need to start producing hyper-targeted and concise content for their customers.
Consider all the demographical data that you already have on your customers, like:
- Geographical location
- Sexual orientation
- Family life
- Favorite music
- Political interest
This list is endless. Creating content that fulfills a niche in every one of these areas presents challenges to businesses. Organizing your data, learning how to use it, and planning for the future will dramatically help you overcome the challenges associated with creating personalized, targeted content.
VR/AR is Taking Off
Although VR/AR technology is not mainstream, the technology is rapidly improving and will eventually change the way people search and consume content.
AR technology, for example, allows consumers to virtually ‘try’ products before buying.
Sephora is already using AR technology-powered apps, which allow customers to ‘try on’ cosmetics before purchasing.
Furniture manufacturers are also using AR technology that allows customers to see what a piece of furniture will look like in their homes before buying.
AR technology is still relatively new and novel, however, it will become the go-to technology as consumers’ appetite for immersive technologies grows.
With more than 171 million VR headsets already sold around the world, SEO content searches with these technologies are going to become more relevant.
Search engines will soon adapt to the rise of these technologies, crawling your website to find any AR/VR content and providing separate search sections for these technologies. When this happens, we will need to consider the SEO practices behind this content.
While this isn't exactly around the corner, it will eventually become reality and many businesses are already preparing. If your company doesn’t have content in these sections to meet your consumers’ demands, you’ll be left behind.
The Growing Relevance of Amazon Search
Amazon is becoming bigger and bigger, so much so that it’s able to compete with the search engine giants such as Google and Yahoo.
Thanks to Amazon’s leading Prime delivery service and product lines, most people won’t even bother searching for products on their typical web browsers and will instead go directly to Amazon.
From a business perspective, this is important to consider. Since Amazon runs their own algorithm system, businesses need to learn Amazon-specific SEO practices.
“You’ll need to figure out the intent of your customers for each product, optimize your headlines, product lines, and your item description in order to perform on both search engines, and learn about the best customer-centric keywords and phrases,” said Alex Dunlop, a content writer for 1Day2Write.
This is important for searching within the Amazon platform, and for optimizing your Amazon results to show up in the Google search engines.
Social Media is Here to Stay
With the recent release of Facebook Video and continuous improvements on all social media platforms, considering how to publish and use social media content is only becoming more relevant to SEO.
Social media platforms already recognize the value of the content industry to businesses and are constantly optimizing their platforms to help businesses maximize the reach of their content and marketing efforts.
More and more people will see content that is relevant to them and the competition between businesses fighting for the top spaces on the results page will only become greater. A customer-centric focus on these platforms will continue to be a priority.
SEO Evolves as Technology Evolves
The biggest changes in SEO revolve around advancements in customer-oriented technologies, like voice search capabilities, AI, VR/AR, Amazon search, and social media.
SEO is a dynamic industry, changing as technology evolves. To prepare for the future, businesses need to watch for trends and advancements in the upcoming year or hire an SEO company, so they don't fall behind.
About the Author
Joel Syder is a business analyst and writer at Academic Brits and Origin Writings. He enjoys helping businesses realize their marketing potential in the exciting field of SEO, writing articles about things that interest him, and consulting online businesses at PhDKingdom.