2020 SEO Trends You Need to Know
SEO Trends You Need to Know – I know, time flies – it really does. At this time, most of us are probably still trying to rank that stubborn competitive keyword while we haven’t realize, the year has gone by. Ok, 2019 is so last year and so are gray hat strategies or shall I say, creative strategies, we used to use to rank pages on the top of Google. Well, it’s time to take our Web Daytona annual look at what is in 2020 for SEO professionals. What SEO strategies and tactics will work and help you dominate in the SERPs and earn more revenue in 2020? Here are important trends you need to know in 2020, according to some of the top SEO agencies and professionals.
1. You Must Truly Know Your Target Audience
With the growing mobile usage, we must ask ourselves. What does our audience consume the most? Does your audience prefer while text over the trending dark background, how about images, perhaps video, or audio. Knowing this will all be more important than ever in 2020, according to our Web Daytona experts. “You will need to really understand what a user is expecting to find when they query a word or phrase and you need to give them the answer in the simplest way possible,” said Ako Stark. Chief SEO Strategist.
This is mostly important to be aware due to rankings being drastically fluctuating in the past year to help fit the semantic intent of a user’s search query, said Duncan Danger, SEO content specialist and director of communications at Web Daytona, LLC
This is the right time to quit matching keyword phrases and start making sure that your content comprehensively answers questions your audience is asking via search.
2. Take Your SEO Strategies Beyond Google Search
In 2020, you also must at least consider optimizing for devices that use voice search such as, Amazon’s Alexa, said Victoria Vela, digital strategist and SEO consultant.
Ultimately, this all requires the best content on the fastest platforms geared to meet the users wherever they’re coming from, according to Keith Goode, IBM’s senior SEO strategist, security intelligence.
3. The Key is Creating Proper Structured Data Markup
This is more labor intensive, but you must try using structured data whenever possible. “Contextual relationships between topics and behaviors, supported by structured markup, is the critical trend we need to start understanding, testing, and implementing for 2020,” Sherman said. “Using information architecture, tags, metadata and more recently, structured markup, we’ve had the ability to give search engines signals to understand this topical and supportive content structure.”
4. Create Exceptional Content
Google algorithm updates in 2019 revealed that Google is intensifying its focus on evaluating content quality and at the depth and breadth of a website’s content, said Eric Enge, general manager of Perficient Digital.
“We tracked the SEO performance of many sites” Enge said. “The sites that provided exceptional depth in quality content coverage literally soared in rankings throughout the year.” Enge said he expects to see the trend of Google rewarding sites that provide the best in-depth experiences continuing in 2020.
“If you can answer a question, get a lead, make a sale, help with SEO (link building), reputation management, social proof or community building purposes with a piece of content, then you win!” Siltala said. “Do your research, be the solution to the problem that people have, and provide something that is meant for people versus trying to ‘SEO’ the crap out of it and you will always do better in your efforts.”
Shelley Walsh, director of ShellShock, expects to see the level of content quality rise in 2020.
“Content strategy in SEO is not just about answering a query and getting users to the page. It must also use language to engage the user and guide the user to the next action,” Walsh said. “There are still far too few pages doing this well. More use of content maps and experience maps would help this.”
5. Become The Expert, Improve Your Authority and Trust with Your Audience
Establishing and growing your expertise, authority, and trustworthiness – better known as E-A-T in Google’s search quality rating guidelines – will be another key trend in 2020.
Grant Simmons, VP of search marketing at Homes.com, said you should look at content distribution and promotion from a reputation standpoint.
“Hire experts to author, leverage data from known entities, and ensure credentials and credit is given to both, with appropriate affinity to the promoted brand,” Simmons said. “How can you get more of your employees to blog, write, and speak? How can you (the brand’s people) be the go-to source for journalists around your core topic expertise? Because that level of expertise is what Google is looking for to power their results.”
Also read: Why SEO Important in 2020
6. Hire Expert Technical SEO Specialists
Websites continue to grow in complexity every year, making technical SEO a major area of investment in 2020 and beyond.
Some key areas of focus on the technical side of SEO will be:
- Speed: “Sites will finally start to become simpler and faster as SEOs discover that Google is rewarding sites more than once thought for speed,” according to Jon Henshaw, founder of Coywolf Marketing and senior SEO analyst at CBS Interactive.
- Progressive (PWAs): “For 2020, you should start thinking about how your website could live on as a PWA in the future. How can your PWA become a keepable experience your users would like to put on their home screen?” Tandler said.
7. On-page Optimization is Key
On-page optimization will continue to be important in 2020, said Tony Wright, CEO and founder of WrightIMC.
“We are still seeing incredible results from nothing more than on-page SEO tactics for many companies that come in the door,” Wright said. “Links are still very important, but the biggest bang for most companies’ SEO bucks is ongoing on-page optimization. Because on-page SEO isn’t a set-it-and-forget-it tactic.”
Alexis Sanders, technical SEO manager at Merkle, also shared some key website optimizations:
- Content that answers common user questions.
- Ensuring internal site search is providing relevant results.
- Shortening conversion process.
- Ensure that repeat customers can restock commonly purchased items simply.
- Customer support responds to questions related to the business.
- Consider use of chatbots to lighten the load for basic, common questions and procedural tasks.
- Users are easily able to navigate to physical locations.
- Providing users with their stage in fulfillment funnel (think: clear, visual process forms).
8. Implement Content for Voice Search
Last decade, “the year of mobile” became a kind of running joke. Every year, the experts predicted that this, finally, would be the year of mobile. Year after year. Until hype finally matched reality around 2015.
Well, is this year the year of voice search? Once again, not quite.
“In my opinion, the ‘juice isn’t worth the squeeze’ yet for most companies when it comes to showing up in voice queries,” Wright said. “However, I think more companies will look into a voice optimization strategy next year. As I said last year, voice search is coming, it still just isn’t quite there yet.”9. Watch Machine Learning
Dave Davies, CEO of Beanstalk Internet Marketing, said machine learning is about to explode in 2020.
“Companies need to adopt machine learning to develop unique content for SEO, beginning with a set of data based on specific variables,” Mathews said. “Machine learning, coupled with the need for analysis and reporting, as testing new strategies and implementation is imperative to understanding successes and failures.”
10. Go For Featured Snippets
In addition to optimizing for your own website, you must also optimize for the Google search experience in 2020.
“Answer boxes, recipes, the knowledge graph, carousels, and who-knows-what-else will take an even bigger bite out of organic traffic,” said Ian Lurie, CEO and founder of Portent. “That makes SEO even more important, because exposure is as much about visibility in the SERPs as it is about clicks.”
That means optimizing for featured snippets (a.k.a., position zero) and other Google search features will continue to be an important trend – and more important than ever – in 2020.
“We have been able to achieve many answer boxes for our own site and client websites,” said Jim Bader, senior director of SEO at Vertical Measures. “Every time this happens, it results in a significant spike in organic traffic.”