You want to keep up with the digital marketing times. But do you know search engine marketing strategies for 2018? Here are the 5 most important trends.
Do you have a feeling that your current search engine marketing plan is a little outdated?
Have you recently experienced a serious drop in your website traffic and you can’t figure out why?
Has your website fallen in the search engine rankings? Are you concerned you’re being penalized by Google?
If you answered “yes” to any of these questions, then it’s likely you haven’t yet updated your digital marketing strategy for 2018.
Read on to learn the biggest SEO trends that you need to know for this year.
1. Voice Search Is On The Rise
Between Apple’s virtual assistant Siri and Amazon’s Alexa, voice search is bigger than ever in 2018.
Many websites still haven’t done anything to optimize their content for voice search. The ultimate goal is to have your site featured on “snippets.” Snippets are essentially a few lines of content that have been pulled directly from your site to give the searcher the most concise answer to their query.
Not only are snippets above all other search results, they’re also read aloud to the searcher.
To be featured, you’ll need to adjust the length of the keywords you use in your content. The goal here is to match the natural way people speak as closely as possible — as opposed to the way they type.
This means you’ll need longer keywords and phrases as well as use location-based keywords more frequently in your content.
2. Optimize For Google’s Mobile-First Index
You likely already know that Internet use on mobile devices has now surpassed access from a desktop computer.
But, here’s what you might not know…
Google has changed its algorithm in order to reflect the mobile trend, switching to a mobile-first indexing system. This means that, in the simplest terms, Google will take a look at your website and rank it according to its mobile-friendliness — even before it examines your desktop site.
The takeaway here?
If your site isn’t mobile-friendly, even the best search engine marketing strategy won’t do you any good.
To optimize your site for mobile, first get rid of any oversized images and auto-play videos on your home page. Then, ensure that your website’s navigation is just as easy on mobile as it is on a desktop.
These small changes can make a big difference when it comes to mobile-friendliness.
3. Leverage Your Video Content
Did you know that YouTube is the world’s second largest search engine?
This means that, if you’re only optimizing your content for Google, then you’re likely already behind your competitors.
Don’t panic — instead, it’s time to make video content a part of your search engine marketing strategy.
Not only does video content help your customers to understand the finer details of your products and services, it’s also much more likely to be shared on social media than written content alone.
The question then becomes how you should adjust your SEO strategy for video content.
The best place to start?
The video description itself.
Aim to write at least a 300-word description of your video and always make sure you’re putting your main keyword in the first 100 characters of that description. Even if your viewers don’t read the entire description, Google and other search engines will still crawl it and index it for SEO.
Try to also include at least ten tags in the description, allowing you to more quickly connect with your target market. Finally, always include a keyword in your video’s title.
4. Use Chatbots To Improve Customer Service
You might not initially think that customer service will have a direct impact on your search engine marketing strategy — but what you’re not considering are the larger consequences of poor customer service.
In today’s world, consumers are used to instant gratification.
If they have questions, they’ll reach out to your brand on social media, send you an email, or use the “contact” form on your website.
Remember, about 80% of those consumers expect that you’ll have some kind of a response for them within a two-hour window.
As a business owner, you know that this isn’t always possible — but your customers don’t care about how busy you are when they’re trying to track their order or get questions about a specific product answered.
So, how can you be available 24/7, without actually being available 24/7?
You can accomplish this through the use of automated chatbots. These pop up on your website and act as virtual assistants for every site visitor, even when you’re not there.
You can program these bots to guide visitors through a natural sales funnel and to answer some of the most common questions you’re asked.
Not only will these chatbots help to save you serious time, they’ll also allow you to provide better and more personalized customer service.
Need Help Refining Your Search Engine Marketing Strategy In 2018?
While search engine marketing is always in flux, 2018, in particular, has already been a big year for changes to search engine algorithms.
It’s up to you to ensure that you’re doing everything within your power to stay on top of these changes.
Of course, when you also have to manage your employees, meet with clients, answer the phone, and occasionally find five minutes to take a much-needed break, this can get tricky.
That’s where we come in.
Spend some time on our website to learn more about the wide variety of SEO services we offer. When you’re ready to rank higher and do more business with a broader market, reach out to us.