Now that we are into a new year, it’s important to know which trends are worth exploring for your business. While it can be tempting to dismiss each year’s new trends as just another fad or phase, in a world where Google rules website searches it’s important to know which emerging trends in website development and SEO (search engine optimization) will benefit your organization. Here are some of these top trends for 2018.
Mobile First continues to be a priority.
Google has begun the roll out of its new Mobile First Index. Websites that are fast and secure will rule.
That’s why Mobile First makes it more critical than ever for the mobile version of your website to have mobile-friendly design and show up faster in search results.
Speed rules: AMP (Accelerated Mobile Pages) improve the mobile website experience.
Make sure your mobile site loads quickly so that visitors don’t abandon your site for a competitor. AMP is an open-source coding standard that allows website publishers to load their sites more quickly on mobile.
Voice Search is playing a bigger role.
How many times have you asked Siri for help in the past year? According to Google, more than 20 percent of internet queries are via voice search. In addition, users are asking more “how to” questions and adding more question-related content. To keep up with voice activated searches, your company should establish its brand and be true to that brand, know your audience, and create content that is relevant, meaningful, and easy to understand.
404 “Not Found” errors can hurt your site’s ranking.
Although it’s not uncommon for a website to get a 404 error, if your site experiences excessive 404s, your Google ranking could suffer. As a result, you could be losing a lot of visitor traffic.
Google is getting better at judging the searcher’s intent.
Searchenginejournal.com notes that as machine learning improves, Google is getting better at understanding language and user intent.
Google is now more adept at judging a website and/or web page’s ability to fulfill the searcher’s intent. For example, if a searcher queries “Polar bear plunge,” Google can better determine if the search is for an actual polar bear taking a plunge or a person’s New Year’s Day plunge into cold water.
Artificial intelligence makes a few waves but natural content will remain valuable. While there will be some practitioners promoting AI (artificial intelligence) content, by 2019 there will be a bigger return to human produced “natural” content that provides better value.
These are just a few of the top website and SEO trends for 2018.
If you need help, there are website and SEO specialists that can provide professional services.
Just be careful to select a service provider with a sound reputation and knowledge of what really works.
This column was compiled by Karen Geriner Robertson, director of public relations and client development at RobMark – Web • Advertising • PR. She can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org or (912) 921-1040.