SEO Trends 2021 – Every Digital Marketer should take a note of.
The field of SEO is always evolving, and as SEO Experts, it is important to keep up with all the latest SEO trends and developments happening with Search Engines. Some of the tactics that were valid before – for example, Meta Keywords – are obsolete now.
In order to get your page on the first SERP, it is essential that all the latest SEO tactics are utilized. However, we have to always keep in mind that the content we deliver isn’t written for Search Engines, but the audience you want to cater to!
Here are some of the latest SEO trends in 2021 that should be a part of your SEO Strategy –
Core Web Vital and Page Experience
Google has officially stated that Core Web Vital is going to be an important Ranking Factor in 2021. The Page Experience Signals in ranking will roll out in May 2021. This is going to directly impact the ranking of your site, and it’s important you get your website optimized.
Core Web Vital includes three factors –
1. Large Contentful paint
LCP basically analyses how much time your site takes to load and display the important content on the browser. It takes in the Loading Factor. A good LCP Score is 2.5 seconds maximum. The elements include Images and Videos.
2. First Input Delay – FID
This measures the Interactivity factor of your website. It basically analyses how much time it takes before the visitor can interact with your website. Ideally, according to Google, this should take less than 100 ms.
3. Cumulative Layout Shift
This takes in the Visual Stability of your website. If your visual and text elements move on the website – that’s a negative sign that the page isn’t user friendly. CLS analyses how often the layout on your website changes. According to Google, it needs to be 0.1.
In order to check the Performance of your page – you can use tools like Google PageSpeed Insights or Lighthouse extension.
Here is an example of Innovatorsdigital.com performance using PageSpeed Insights.
The tool shows the ‘opportunity’ to improve the performance of the website.
In order to make sure your Core Web Vitals are at par, you can –
1. Compress the image file size
2. Reduce the CSS and JS file in order to speed up your loading speed.
3, Make sure the plugins on your WordPress site are updated, and the unused ones are deactivated and deleted as that can increase the load time.
4. Make sure all the CTAs, Buttons, Forms etc. are mobile screen friendly.
Videos have become the one of the most consumed content over the years. According to a report by Cisco, total Internet video traffic will be 80% of all Internet traffic by 2022. It’s become all the more necessary to include Video in your SEO Strategy.
Videos help the users engage more with your content. Creating videos might require more investment, but if you are an E-Commerce Website, the video content could include demonstration of your products.
Google also shows Video Featured Snippets. If your YouTube videos are SEO-optimized, you have the opportunity to grab that space for your keyword. Embed videos in your Blog Content. This will help you improve the bounce rate from your webpage.
Voice Search is a trend that’s affecting SEO and the way users now approach the Search Engines. With applications and devices such as Google Home, Google Assistant, Amazon’s Alexa, Apple’s Siri and Microsoft’s Cortana, Voice Search might soon be a new norm, and SEO managers need to make their content Voice Search Friendly.
To optimize for Voice Search, make the content natural and conversational. The questions that people would frequently ask. Start your paragraphs with questions like – Why, How, What, etc.
Use long tail keywords as it’s been noticed that Voice Search Queries have long tail keywords.
Make sure that your website is mobile-friendly and that the loading speed is faster to answer the users’ queries.
Google is all about delivering the right content to the users. With algorithm called BERT (Bidirectional Encoder Representations from Transformers) Google is now aiming to understand the User’s search intent for a particular keyword. If your content doesn’t match the Search Intent, Google won’t rank your content.
To rank for your target keyword, match the user’s intent 1 on 1. If your target keyword, for example – ‘It Companies in Bangalore’ shows up lists of companies, then make sure that your blog post also is a listicle as that is what people are searching for.
Repurpose your older content to match the Search Intent.
Local SEO has become more important than ever. With Google updating its Google My Business Features, it can almost act like your second website! You can add posts, answer questions, set up messaging, and more.
Mobile Searches that include ‘Near Me’ has increased, and Google lists out the businesses in the SERP.
If you are a local business providing services, then it’s a must that you optimize your business listing on Google. Keep your customers updated with offers, what’s new in your store, using the post feature.
With COVID-19 Restrictions in place, Google has introduced features for local businesses to add to their listings. For example – if any business conducts online appointments, follow Health and Hygiene Guidelines, if the hotels are servicing in the outlets and so on.
Provide the important information – Business Name, Address, Phone Number and keep it constant throughout your Digital channel. Don’t forget to list yourself in online directories which will also help your backlink strategy!
E-A-T and Long Form Content
E-A-T is an acronym for Expertise, Authority and Trust. The recent guideline by Google states that it will focus more on E-A-T to rank a page. The idea behind this signal is that Google wants to provide content from websites that are an authority or relevant to the industry.
This means that you need to be an expert in the field your company or you are in. For example, if you are a real estate business, having property-related content will establish your authority.
You also need to invest in Long Form Content. According to a study by SEMRUSH, content with 3000 words and more get more traffic, backlinks, and shares than an average content piece.
It will also help that Google has introduced Passage Ranking. This feature will now rank passages in the content on the SERP. This means that Google will evaluate the relevance of the ENTIRE page, and the subtopic.
It is important to spend time making long form content and organizing the subtopics using the relevant tags so Google can parse the page. The chances of you ranking is higher when you have entire information about a particular topic in one post than in different posts.
Structured Data and Featured Snippets
Google’s constantly making changes to its SERP features and now there are many opportunities to get a space for ourselves in the first page – An optimized GMB, Knowledge Panel, Paragraph ranking for a question keyword, video popping up in the zero position and so on.
In order to make sure our content is rich result, setting up our website with all the header tags and using structured data to organize the content of your page. Use relevant Schema Mark-up to mark your content.
For example, Use FAQ schema if you have an FAQ content on your page. They might have the chance to feature below your link or as ‘People Also Ask’ snippet.
Check this article out on Featured Snippets by Semrush that explains the concept and how to optimize for the same.
There are plugins such as Yoast SEO Premium Plugin that can help you implement Structured Data on your web page.
Google has already stated the Mobile-First Indexing, which means that Google will check whether your website is optimized for a mobile screen before indexing and ranking your website.
It’s become more important now than ever, to focus on making your website Mobile Friendly, that it has a responsive design and loads as fast as your desktop site.
Google has already been working on the transition. Make sure all the pages on your website are mobile-friendly.
Image Optimization should take a priority as you optimize your page for all the SEO elements. With tools like Google Lens, where can people can search a product using their camera, visual search is going to be huge trend in the future.
Use High Quality and relevant images in your content. Make sure that the Alt Tags are correctly set for them and add the images to your sitemap for the Search Engines to crawl and index that.
These are some important trends that you should work on in 2021 other than the usual SEO Techniques we use in our strategy! SEO is ever evolving, and to get a space in the first SERP, we have to make sure we follow the trends and set our content based on the algorithm’s workings to ensure that Google is looking at our page.
Need someone to optimize your website? You can contact us at Innovators Digital to take your SEO game forward!
You may also like to read – Top 10 On-Page SEO Questions – Answered.