2020 SEO Trends That Will Get You On Top Of Google Search
As a business owner, you may have a lot of questions regarding SEO. Why is SEO always evolving? How does SEO help my business? Why is SEO a never-ending process? What can I do to keep up with the changes?
Every year, you may have researched the latest SEO trends to help build your online presence. However, it does not always work that way. To implement the most current SEO techniques, you need to understand them so that you can use and implement them properly and effectively.
Luckily, you can find a lot of information about the latest Google search trends to help your business rank higher. However, the implementation of these trends may be a real struggle. Before we delve into the 2020 SEO trends that will send you up the Google search results, let us take a look at what SEO is.
What is SEO and How It Works
Search Engine Optimization (SEO) is the art and science of optimizing a website by getting traffic from “organic” or “natural” search results on major search engines, such as Google, Yahoo, Bing, etc.
SEO can be complicated for many business owners, especially with all the different factors affecting your website ranking. However, the basic process involved in optimizing your website and content is not as difficult to understand. Optimizing for search engines involves performing the necessary changes to your web design and content to make your website look more enticing to them. If implemented properly, your website will be displayed on top of the search engine results page.
Marketers use various SEO techniques to rank their websites high in search engines for relevant keywords or phrases. For example, you are writing an article about taking care of dogs. To get your content in front of your target audience, you need to optimize it so that search engines will display your content on the top result for searchers looking for a topic on “how to take care of dogs.”
Think of search engines as modern digital libraries that store copies of web content pages, instead of copies of books. When a person searches for a certain topic using a specific keyword or phrase, search engines provide users with the best answer by delivering relevant and high-quality results that the searcher is looking for.
To understand what the content is all about, the search engine scans or crawls the web page. This allows the search engines to deliver users with more relevant results for certain topics or keywords. Also, the search engines scan and evaluate the ease of navigation of your website and rewards user-friendly websites with higher rankings on the search engine results page (SERP).
Optimizing for Google
Google uses more than 200 factors that will determine the ranking of a website. Back in 2010, some believed that there could be up to 10,000 ranking factors. While most of them remained unknown even to the savviest internet marketers, Google revealed some.
Let us examine some of these factors and how they correlate with Google rankings:
- Crawlability – Google needs to know your website exists before ranking your web page content. Among the many ways Google uses to discover new content is crawling. Google follows existing links on the pages, allowing spiders to discover new content it has not crawled before and adds it to their index. Google spider bots crawl the links found on your home to discover your other web pages.
Take note that some factors prevent Google spider bots from crawling your website:
- Poor Internal Linking – Internal links on your web pages are crucial. Without them, Google cannot crawl your website.
- No-follow Internal Links – Google would not crawl internal links with no-follow tags.
- No-Indexed Pages – Use noindex meta-tags or HTTP headers to exclude pages from Google’s index. If some of the internal links are from no-indexed pages, Google would be unlikely to crawl them.
- Blocks in Robots.txt – Robots.txt show Google the pages it can and cannot crawl your website. Blocked pages prevent Google from crawling them.
- Mobile-Friendliness – According to a Statista survey, 63 percent of Google searches are from mobile devices and the number is expected to increase every year. In 2016, mobile-friendliness can give a website a ranking boost in mobile search results. Google announced mobile-first indexing in 2018.
The bounce rate is likely to increase when a desktop version of a website loads on a mobile device. To keep mobile users satisfied, web pages should be optimized for mobile devices.
- Pagespeed – Pagespeed is another important desktop and mobile ranking factor that measures how fast a web page loads. Slow loading webpages often lead to dissatisfaction and an increased bounce rate. Google’s Pagespeed Insights tool helps check the speed rate of your web pages, while the Ahrefs Site Audit tool is used to identify slow-loading pages across your website.
- Search Intent – Also known as User Intent, search intent refers to the user query typed into the search engine. The query could be informational, navigational, commercial, and transactional.
- Backlinks – Google uses PageRank to determine the number of backlinks a web page has. Think of backlinks as votes. The more quality backlinks a page has, the higher its rank in the SERPs.
- Authority – You may have a lot of backlinks in your web page, but it does not necessarily mean you have a good website ranking. Acquiring backlinks from high-authority pages help your website rank higher in SERPs. In 2016, Google discontinued public PageRank scores, preventing us from seeing the authority rating of a web page.
Ahrefs URL Rating (UR) is a similar metric, running on a 0-100 scale and measures the quantity and quality of web page backlinks. Other than backlinks, there are other ways you can use to boost your web page authority. UR also considers internal links that contribute to the authority of a page. If you want to strengthen the authority of your web page, add relevant internal links from other high-authority pages.
- Content Quality – To nurture your brand, you need to build its expertise, authority, and trustworthiness to rank for the best search terms in your industry. Content quality helps you rank better and get higher conversions.
Google may have a lot of factors that affect your SEO ranking, but always make sure that your content is relevant, engaging, and valuable to your target audience.
SEO Trends to Boost Your Google Ranking in 2020
The SEO landscape is constantly evolving. Google disclosed to have 3,234 algorithm updates last year. That is why, as a business owner, you should keep up with the changes and implement them to your digital marketing strategy to ensure that your target audience can easily find your website in search engines.
With online competition increasing and new websites being launched online, consider rethinking your SEO strategies to meet the specific requirements set by search engines. Update your website according to the latest SEO trends to help increase visibility in the search engine results.
Let us take some moment to delve into the different 2020 SEO trends essential for increasing your website ranking:
- Snippets Continue to Dominate More Search Clicks – Google continues to strive hard to deliver users a better search experience through Featured Snippets. Referred to as “position 0,” featured snippets can be found above the first (number 1) result. Depending on the quality of the web page content, Google has a unique way of evaluating and boosting it to the top of the search engine results. Featured snippets should not be taken lightly as they comprised 54.68% of the search engine clicks. They also provide content creators with great opportunities by helping you generate more organic traffic despite not belonging at the top position.
So, how do you take advantage of this feature? Simply provide your target audience with clear and direct answers to questions frequently asked on your website.
- Visual Search – Visual search refers to an action used by your target audience using images, instead of text. Artificial intelligence scans the image to examine and understand the elements and displays the best results of the search.
Shoppers use their sense of sight and touch to find and buy in the offline world, but online shoppers use visual search transfers to examine and evaluate a product that is put on sale on the Internet.
Take, for instance, selling fashionable clothes. You need to optimize your products to be displayed on Amazon or Pinterest. Visual search leads to increased transactions and more future customers.
To optimize for visual search:
- Add descriptive alt-text to images
- Submit images in the sitemap, allowing crawl to access the images.
- Apply schema markup to images to give it a good comprehension together with its product details.
- Optimize alt tags, file names, and title of the image to give searchers a better understanding of the context.
- Use high-quality images
- Optimize image size
- Mobile UX – Websites not optimized for mobile are more likely to lose more users in the coming years. Mobile-friendly web pages remain a growing trend and will even become more popular this year. Millions of people are using smartphones. It is not enough to just have a mobile-optimized website. With technology and the way people search for information, the interface of mobile devices should be easily read, catch the attention of the reader, and be able to answer their questions or keep thems entertained.
- Optimizing for BERT– The launch of Google’s new algorithm, BERT, caught a lot of attention in 2019. This year, BERT will play an important factor in the ranking and featured snippets algorithm. This shows that Google has placed a serious emphasis on ensuring search queries all about intent matching rather than pure string matching.
According to Eli Schwartz, Growth Consultant and Advisor, “Content will truly have to be written to user intent rather than just strings that a user might search. Keyword research tools may even become less relevant with the primary dataset for content creation coming from suggested queries. In 2020, the really smart SEOs will get up from their desks to talk to customers so they can find out what their audience really wants from them.”
This only shows the need for both SEO professionals and tooling providers to focus their efforts more towards research intent and fulfilling user needs. Focusing on user intent gives you a clear understanding of which path you fit. Provide your target audience with the best answers and solutions for questions and problems and you can effectively capture and convert customers.
- High-Quality, Optimized Content – Content is not only king but the lifeblood of SEO. It is a significant SEO factor that affects the site structure, internal linking strategy and the type of link you build. This year, you will still need to write engaging and valuable content that is relevant to your target audience. This year, stop your obsession with individual keywords and chasing pageviews.
Jesse McDonalds, Global SEO Strategist of IBM, said, “The goal of switching the mentality to more of a topic-focus is to create content that addresses an entire conversation holistically as opposed to just worrying about the single keyword a page should be targeting.”
Take note of these following tips:
- Understand who your audience is and their searching behaviour.
- Know and understand the intention behind each question that requires a clear solution.
- Write on-point, quality, and authoritative content that provides users with the solutions in their preferred format.
These latest trends will help define your SEO strategies in 2020 and increase your opportunity of appearing on the first pages of Google SERPs. Apply these trends today or hire a Toronto SEO Company to benefit from these trends.
Local SEO Search is a trusted and reliable SEO company that has helped numerous small business owners in different industries. We provide SEO solutions tailored to your unique digital marketing needs. You do not have to go through the complexity of SEO all alone. Let us help you build your business a solid and strong foundation in the digital marketing world. Call us now for a free 30-minute, in-depth consultation and find out what we can do for you.