Whether your goal is to increase site traffic or improve revenue, you need search engine optimization (SEO) to help you rank higher on search engine results pages (SERPs).
However, your SEO strategies may help your site rank well now but not in the coming months. People’s search behaviors as well as search engine algorithms change, so you have to keep up to maintain your ranking.
Let us talk about important SEO trends to try out for great SERP rankings.
Optimize for Featured Snippets
Digital Authority Partners said the latest SEO trends could help improve overall site rankings. One of the latest techniques is optimizing for featured snippets. Also called rich snippets, featured snippets are highlighted texts shown at the top of a SERP at position 0.
Featured snippets offer short answers to a query, typically in the form of a short paragraph or a list. Your audiences use them to preview a site’s content. When the snippet seems to answer their question, they tend to click on it for more information.
Automated systems at Google decide if your page can be a good featured snippet for a search query. Everyone can get featured, and your chances increase if your site is already in the top ten for related searches. When optimizing for featured snippets, you should:
- Ask questions in your blog or article. Doing so improves your chances of getting featured. Use your question as part of your subheading and immediately provide a one-paragraph answer.
- Improve content structure. Google can easily crawl and index sites that are well-organized or structured. Follow Google’s guide on creating meta descriptions to understand what it takes to generate snippets.
- Organize questions. Use a multi-level organization technique for your keywords when creating questions. For example, a generic keyword fits your blog category, while a specific query is the title of a post. More particular queries are in your subheadings.
Take Advantage of Core Web Vitals
Core web vitals were introduced to quantify web page user experience (UX), as a high UX guarantees a higher ranking on SERPs. Google Core Web Vitals revolve around three points:
- Largest Contentful Paint (LCP) – this metric represents how your main content loads. It is measured from when your user initiates your page to the last image or text loaded. To improve LCP, use the correct image size, enhance server response time, use website caching, and use a better hosting service.
- Cumulative Layout Shift (CLS) – happens when a visible site element resizes or changes position and, thus, affects the positioning of the content surrounding it. High CLS can negatively affect UX. You can improve CLS by setting the dimensions of your banner ads, images, videos, and embeds.
Understand Google BERT Algorithm
With Google’s Bidirectional Encoder Representations from Transformers (BERT) update, the search engine is nearing the ability to feel like a human being. BERT uses machine learning (ML) and natural language processing (NLP) to help Google figure out what people are looking for so that it can give them the most relevant search results.
BERT helps Google bots understand language and develop a conversational approach to search. So, making sure that your web pages and content are optimized for Google BERT can help you move up in the SERPs. Remember to:
- Use simple language. Doing so helps Google understand your content and how your pages connect. Use related keywords in your content, but do not overdo it.
- Understand your audience better. Get to know their search intent, issues, and pain points so you can provide the most relevant results. Use interviews, surveys, and quizzes. Check your social media pages for comments from your followers to understand what they are searching for and apply these in your content.
- Create content for your potential clients and not for bots. This ensures you keep sight of why you created your content and provide the content your users are looking for.
Prioritize Mobile SEO
More and more people use their mobile phones to find what they need. They use their phones to order products or services, look for the latest information, and more. So, one way to improve your SERP ranking and bring attention to your brand is to put mobile SEO first. Be sure to:
- Use a responsive layout. This layout allows sites to rescale according to the device used to access it. Run a test for mobile responsiveness using Google DevTools Device Mode, Ghostlab, or BrowserStack.
- Improve website design. Use a clean website with easy navigation and only a few elements for faster loading speeds. Ask the help of a developer to help you implement a modern web design to improve visual appeal and higher UX.
- Test your site on different devices. Take time to check your site from other smartphones and tablets of varying sizes. Doing this will help you improve your mobile site elements and enhance your UX.
- Avoid Flash. This can significantly reduce site speed which impacts SEO and kills UX. Flash makes pages take a lot of time to load
- Include voice search. People are using their mobile phone assistants like Siri and Google Assistant to find what they need through their devices. Optimize your local SEO and featured snippets, use schema markups, and write content in a way that sounds natural.
Follow SEO trends, like using featured snippets, optimizing your Core Web Vitals, using Google BERT, and making your site more mobile-friendly, to help your site rank higher. When correctly applied, you can improve visibility, promote your brand, and increase engagement. These SEO strategies take you closer to meeting your goals.