SEO is one of those industries which is constantly evolving and presenting new challenges, so it’s very important to stay on top of the latest developments in the field, and 2020 is no different. Being able to rank your website in the search results is absolutely key to a successful online business, so here are some top tips for staying on top of your SEO this year.
2020 is the year in which voice searches are expected to hit 50% of all internet searches, and this is a massive thing to take into account when thinking about SEO strategy. As the combination of smartphones, Amazon Echo, smart TVs, and other devices increases the prevalence of voice searches, the most common search phrases are becoming much more conversational in nature. This means that complete question phrases are being entered into the search engine, not the shorter and more abrupt keywords that we are used to optimizing for. Bear this in mind as it will be a gamechanger.
Influencer marketing is set to grow massively in 2020 and this will directly affect SEO too. At first, this might not seem to make much sense. How is influencer marketing connected with SEO? The answer is actually quite simple. If you use influencers to grow the outreach of your content, you will start to get high-quality backlinks organically, due to the level of exposure you’ll receive. If your chosen influencers have high authority in your field, the authority of the backlinks you’ll get will be unmatched and will work wonders with your rankings.
Featured Snippets is a relatively new Google feature that you have probably noticed when you’re searching. An extract from the winning site will appear in a box at the top of the results page, usually in response to certain commonly asked questions about the given topic. If you can win this spot you’ll be at the top of the page above the first position, and over half of all clicks go to the snippet result, so it’s definitely worth trying to get there. This is going to become increasingly important in 2020. Research the most commonly asked questions for your topic and work them into your content with as much clarity as possible for a chance of ranking in Featured Snippets, even if you’re not ranked among the first results.
2020 will continue the trend of mobile browsing even further, so if your site is not mobile optimized you will definitely lose out. Search engines are looking at this as well as users, so it’s absolutely vital that you optimize for mobile experience in order to prevent ranking drops. Smartphones are now massively ahead of tablets and computers in the overall share of web browsing, so just having a mobile version of your site is not enough. You should go further and optimize the entire mobile user interface.
In 2020, the search engines will be looking more and more at web searcher satisfaction. The two metrics in question here are Click Through Rate (CTR) and Dwell Time, which is the amount of time a user spends on your site after clicking the search result. If a user clicks on your site and doesn’t spend much time on it, the search engine will assume that it didn’t solve their problem and will punish your rank accordingly. The same goes for CTR, which shows how many users clicked on your site when they saw it on the search result page. This essentially means that it’s more important than ever to focus on quality content that solves the problems that people are searching for.
A great user experience is absolutely crucial to a successful SEO strategy in 2020, and the loading speed of your website is a key factor in this. If a page doesn’t load in a matter of seconds, most users will give up and move on, and not only will you lose a visitor, but your rankings will also be hurt. Consider changing your hosting service if speeds are not good enough.
In 2020 we’re set to see the time spent on your site and also the bounce rate to become increasingly important for your rankings, so if you don’t have your SSL certificate properly set up, this could completely ruin your overall SEO strategy. In the past HTTPS has been considered optional, but in 2020 this will no longer be the case. If visitors coming to your site are given browser alerts warning them that your site is not secure, they could bounce out immediately as they won’t feel safe. Google will notice this and will likely punish you in the overall rankings.
In 2020 we will see Artificial Intelligence playing a bigger and bigger role in search engine ranking algorithms, and of course, Google is already using it for this. Their AI technology is learning all of the attributes associated with successful content and is getting better at it every day. There’s no way of figuring out how to trick a system like this, so the only advice to take away is to make the best, most relevant content and the AI will do the rest!
Emerging studies have given a clue that article length seems to be a factor for success in ranking content, with 2000 words being the minimum content length to have the highest chance of good ranking. This is presumably because users and search engines have a preference for problems being solved all in one place, so the more problem-solving content on one page the better. Of course, this doesn’t mean that you should stuff extra wording into your content, the content should still be relevant and sufficiently concise.
Video has shown massive growth in the past years and 2020 will be no different. A huge number of people, especially in younger generations, are looking for information and solutions through video, and many of them are searching directly on Youtube. Focus on building great video content that can engage viewers, and make sure you optimize video titles and descriptions to reach the highest possible number of searchers, including those who were not looking for video content initially but may see your video as a Google result. This will help you to build your overall ranking and authority in your field.
SEO is such a fast-moving field that it often seems overwhelming to try and keep up with, but keep these tips in mind and you’ll go a long way towards a successful and well-ranked 2020!
All the best,
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