Search Engine Optimisation (SEO) is an effective and long-term digital marketing strategy to attract consumers to your website.SEO is constantly changing, and keeping up with the latest updates can be a challenge. However, it is still worth putting more effort into it instead of investing more in paid aids.
To achieve top-tier SEO performance, many metrics must be monitored, including traffic, backlinks, and social shares, just to name a few. By referring to more SEO research and studies, I’m pleased to have summarised the latest search engine optimisation trends for you to anticipate for 2021 so that you can prepare an excellent SEO strategy that delivers results.
Here are the 10 SEO trends you should watch for in 2021.
Table of Contents
- 1. A Focus on User and Search Intent
- 2. The EAT Concept
- 3. Long-Form Content Improves SERPs
- 4. Mobile SEO is the Next Big Trend
- 5. Featured Snippets are Becoming More Prominent
- 6. Core Web Vitals & Page Experience Optimisations
- 7. Image SEO/ Optimisations
- 8. Get more from Local SEO
- 9. Voice Search Optimisation
- 10. Video Marketing Strategy
1. A Focus on User and Search Intent
A study conducted by Ahrefs stated that optimising search content resulted in a 677 per cent increase in organic traffic for one of its core landing pages in just six months. Search intent is all about ‘the why’ behind a search query. It is related to what the users want to learn, find, or buy.
Why Is Search Intent Important in 2021?
Google aims to provide users with the most relevant results for their searches. Google’s success as a company is dependent on it succeeding in this endeavour. Let’s look at Bing to see what happens when a search engine returns low-quality and irrelevant results. Bing is rarely used nowadays, which means that ad revenue is reduced.
Google tries so hard to provide relevant content to users based on their search. That is why we should focus on search intent in 2021 and continue with this practice. Like content marketing specialist at Page One Power Andrew Dennis said, ‘SERP analysis will be an important practice not just in 2021, but moving forward as search intents change and Google continues to become more sophisticated to keep up’.
2. The EAT Concept
Google stated, once again, that content quality is critical for ranking success. But how can we define ‘good quality for Google? You can refer to the EAT principle: Expertise, Authoritativeness, and Trustworthiness. This principle was introduced by Google to help determine if a web page has useful quality content.
If you offer a service or product that you have deep knowledge about, you could be classified as an expert in that field—especially if you demonstrate that your knowledge and support level is better than your competitor’s. If you demonstrate that you have more expertise than others in the market, you’ll be picked out as an expert.
Authority or authoritativeness simply means that a person or website is trusted and reliable. When people search the internet, they’re looking for an authority who can provide them with answers they can trust and is the best person or channel to go to. Google examines your brand, website, and content to see if it is not only expertly written content but also the leading authority or authoritative content available.
Trustworthiness is the measurement of your brand’s, website’s, or content’s credence. You can understand why Google will measure and has always measured trust in a website based on the backlinks it detects from other domains. The higher the trust in the linked domain, the more trust it puts into the linked domain. But it also depends on the backlink quality. Bad backlinks may cause your trustworthiness to decrease. Therefore, it is important to ensure your content’s quality.
Three Ways to Ensure Quality Contents
- Create Buyer Personas. They allow you to understand what kind of content your clients value.
- Conduct Search Intent Research. When you research search intent, you can better understand the search trends and what customers have been looking for recently.
- Use the information to create content that fits the format your users prefer.
In short, follow the EAT method when creating your content. Always back up your arguments with statistics, data, and facts and have an authoritative site link back to your website.
3. Long-Form Content Improves SERPs
According to the State of Content Marketing Report, long reads of 3,000 words or more receive three times more traffic and four times more shares than short reads. They also get 3.5 times more backlinks than articles that are 901 to 1,200 words.
Start focusing on long-form content to achieve higher search rankings. That said, your content must maintain its quality. The purpose is to draw users in with shareable information to keep them engaged. Ensure your contents offer valuable information that allows people to continue reading and engaging with you. Tip sharing, guidelines for products or services, are data research are the best content categories to start with.
4. Mobile SEO is the Next Big Trend
According to CNBC, nearly 73% of internet users will access the internet solely via mobile devices by 2025. In 2019, Google rolled out mobile-first indexing, where the search engine takes the mobile version of a website as the priority to evaluate search rankings.
Check your mobile-friendly score now with Google’s free mobile-friendly test. If your score is below 50%, it is time to have a discussion with your web development team about optimising it.
Ensuring that your content or website performs well on mobile devices should also remain a priority because that is where most searches are conducted, said Jeff Riddall, VP of product and customer success at Mintent.
5. Featured Snippets are Becoming More Prominent
Featured snippets were introduced by Google in 2017. They are a sort of shortcut to gaining prominence on Google. You may have noticed a box at the top of SERPs above the actual results when you type some keywords into the Google search bar. That’s a snippet.
Featured snippets present a chunk of information, often in the form of Q&A, brief bullet-points, or a how-to guide. There are also rich snippets such as images, star-based reviews, product prices, and similar information.
To create snippets, you may focus on question-based queries and relevant keywords. You can use the Google search function Google Autocomplete as reference and inspiration.
Snippets are unlike structured data. Google only creates featured snippets for your website if your content is relevant, quality, and trustworthy. Scoring a featured snippet is the best way to get on that coveted first page of results and steal significant traffic from your competitors.
6. Core Web Vitals & Page Experience Optimisations
Google has announced Core Web Vitals will become page experience ranking signals in 2021 in an update combined with existing UX-related signals.
The “page experience” signals combine Core Web Vitals with the following signals:
- Mobile Friendly
- Safe Browsing
- No Intrusive Interstitials
Websites and businesses must prioritise for them in order to avoid falling behind their competitors. Google is focusing more on mobile-friendliness as people today spend much and much time on mobile devices. These are cybersecurity essentials for websites to ensure cyber safety for their searchers.
7. Image SEO/ Optimisations
You may ask how relevant are images with search engine optimisations. As mentioned earlier in the Core Vitals section, page loading speed is one of the factors.
What is Image SEO?
Image SEO is all about improving your site’s images to ensure your website ranks higher on Google Image Search and the overall visibility and optimisation of a web page are improved, especially on page speed.
Ensure Google can understand your site images better by including correctly naming files, adding and optimising alt text, reducing file sizes and more. Google is still not able to read all types of images, even though they have improved significantly in recent years with the use of AI and machine learning.
That is the reason why ALT text is important to get Google to understand what the image is about. Optimising images also improves your web page speed. It is also one of the core factors of the Core Vitals concept.
8. Get more from Local SEO
Local SEO is becoming increasingly important, and local results are among the most relevant for users looking for a solution. As a result, businesses can now take advantage of and benefit from local SEO.
72% of consumers who did a local search visited a store within 5 miles.
– Amy Bishop, Clix Marketing
51% of people want Location-Based Coupons when searching.
– Aaron Levy, Elite SEM
In fact, nowadays, mobile search for “open + now + near me” has become a practice for searches with their mobile device. Kickstarting your local SEO will help your business explore more possibilities and reach the searchers easily.
9. Voice Search Optimisation
Studies from DBS interactive show that in 2020, more than 50% of all smartphone users engage with voice technology on their device. 41% of adults use voice search at least once per day.
Voice Search Optimisation is becoming a new trending SEO Strategy. Voice search enables users to get the answers easily from their smartphone without having to type out the search.
To optimise for voice search, go back to basics, consider your keywords. Identify what are the phrases that people use in everyday conversation. Longer, more natural-sounding phrasing performs better in voice searches. When people type, they tend to shorten their sentences.
For example, a person might voice search “What are the famous foods for a tourist to visit in Singapore?” but type the words, “famous food in Singapore”. See the difference?
10. Video Marketing Strategy
Videos are probably the most popular media form consumed by online users nowadays.
According to Wordstream, more than 500 million hours of videos are watched on YouTube per day. 87% of digital marketers use video content to reach their audience.
The video marketing strategy is an essential strategy for most of the business to increase brand awareness, offer knowledge, and interact with potential customers. It’s recommended to implement the ABCD principle by Google to create a better performance video ad.
A good video ad is able to catch users’ attention within 3 seconds, connect with the audience, interact with them, and tell them the next steps.
Wish to know more about the ABCD principle to create the best video ads? Check out the article I wrote here.
In a Nutshell
Eh, so is SEO getting so important in 2021? With the Covid-19 pandemic, and everyone go online, many businesses say must try SEO in 2021. If you still catch no ball what SEO is, or feel it is something too cheem, no worries, Exabytes offers Professional SEO Services for your website to rank high on Google.
Aiyo, don’t wait again. We’re here for you when it comes to SEO. Get in touch with us! Consultation is free.