You probably know how important SEO is for boosting your online visibility. Well, here’s something you might not know – you are never really done with SEO. Yep, that’s right – SEO is an ongoing effort which requires constant vigilance and discovery of new means to expand your reach in meaningful ways.
Search engines are continuously evolving and so do the best practices for search engine optimization. For instance, a few years ago SEO was all about primary keywords, but as shown by recent statistics collected by SEO Tribunal, 50% of the search queries now are four words or longer.
Staying on top of such a changing game can be difficult. With that in mind, we provide you with five SEO hacks that you must try in 2018 (if you haven’t already!) and skyrocket your success.
1. Optimize for Voice Search
Recent voice search statistics prove the frenetic rise of this technology. In 2017, 20% of searches were voice-activated, but by 2022 voice queries will account for 50% of all searches. That being said, now would be a great time to take advantage of this emerging trend.
Since the majority of voice searches are questions, try and include long-tail keywords which contain question words such as “why, how, what, and where” and create a detailed FAQ page. Also, claim your Google My Business listing and make sure to use structured data in order to help search engines classify your content and important information such as operational hours, contact, and address.
2. Link to Other Sites
Many marketers think they will lose customers if linking to other sites. Wrong! Linking to other relevant pages is one of one of the most efficient tricks for boosting organic traffic. Think about it – the ultimate goal of Google is to provide users with the most relevant results for any given search. When linking to relevant and authoritative websites you’re actually adding value and becoming a great source for searches.
There’s also a side benefit to the outbound linking – the linked websites will see that you have linked to them and they will most likely return the favor. This practice will further boost your credibility and prove to Google that your content is relevant.
3. Get Mobile
The number of mobile users has significantly increased over the past few years. As shown by SEO statistics, 58% of searches come from mobile and 40% of people search solely on a smartphone. What is more, since the mobile-first index rollout, mobile-friendly websites are a priority for Google when ranking search results.
Now more than ever it’s important to create a responsive web design and provide an optimal viewing experience across different devices. Additionally, you can leverage Google’s Accelerated Mobile Pages (AMP) framework. AMPs offer a smooth and effective creation of mobile-friendly pages that load fast and display correctly on mobile devices.
4. Implement Video Content
Apart from evaluating the content, Google also checks what other media you have on your page. Having unique and quality video content on your site can also enhance your link-building strategy and outreach efforts. Plus, the more shares your video gets, the more views it will get; therefore, it will appear more valuable to Google.
What’s more to it, people prefer video over written formats. From full-screen video headers to short clips, videos are proven to grab attention and provide users with more valuable information in an engaging way. Statistics show that by 2019, 80% of all internet traffic will be represented by video and YouTube is already the second largest search engine, right behind Google.
5. Check If Anything Slows Down Your Website
Users want instant results for their queries and even the slightest delay can make them lose interest in your website. As a matter of fact, a 500ms speed delay can result in up to 8% decrease in engagement, meaning high bounce rate and poor user experience. Speed is also one of the most important ranking factors at the moment. If your website is slow, search engines will crawl fewer pages, thus hurting your ranking on the SERP.
As the web page load time depends directly on the total size of content assets being downloaded to the browser, you should consider using compressed files and optimized images. To maximize your efforts, make sure to optimize or diminish all unnecessary and compressible code lines, as well as use web cache.
Wrapping It Up
SEO in 2018 is getting more and more competitive, so you need to adapt quickly. But regardless of the trends, your top priority should be to provide value for your customers and become their most credible source of unique information.
These five smart hacks will help you position your website to get discovered with content people are searching for. Of course, after proving your website is credible, higher rankings will follow. Consequently, you will see increased traffic, more qualified leads, and higher CTRs, which is the ultimate goal of every webmaster.
As the Marketing Manager at SEO Tribunal, part of Tina’s daily engagements involve raising awareness of the importance of digital marketing when it comes to the success of small businesses. As her first step towards this journey was in the field of content marketing, she’s still using every opportunity she gets to put her thoughts into educational articles.