Is SEO Still Worth It?
Ads now take up almost all the first page of Google search results for many competitive keywords allowing people who have struggled to get their content on top of the search engine results to pay for it.
It might take a while to get your website to rank on Google using organic SEO which is why most businesses in search for quicker results go for Google AdWords to save time and get what they need almost immediately.
This doesn’t mean SEO is dead because people would still use search engines to search for things. However, some elements of SEO has changed; a lot.
Google’s Search Results Pages have more click-through rates than those ranking high in Adwords according to studies. This could only mean that people prefer and trust organic sites than those using Google Adwords further proving that SEO is still important.
How SEO has changed
In the past, search engine optimisation (SEO) masters got away with a lot of tricks to help their sites rank high on Google.
Tricks included using keyword stuffing and backlinks which worked perfectly fine until Google had to step up to save its users from desperate mediocre websites through its search algorithm.
SEO has changed in the following ways:
Voice search like the name implies allows users to use their voice to search for what they need on search engines. The sound then goes through the Automatic Speech Recognition (ASR) to translate it to a text which the search engine turns into a query before searching.
Voice search is the new SEO method predicted to eat up to 50% of traditional search. It makes up about 20% of mobile queries as people are finding it more accessible to speak to their mobile phones rather than typing.
There is a need to incorporate voice search to your SEO if you want your website to continue being relevant because about 55% of teenagers and 40% of adults use it for searching through Google.
Voice search is lengthier than the standard typed keywords since people express themselves while talking. This means to improve your keyword optimisation; you need to use longer tail keywords and make your content more conversational.
The production of the Internet of Things (IoT) devices, has also contributed to changing the SEO methods. It might be a relatively new device, but it has about 7 billion users aside from iPhone and Android users.
There is a lot of prediction that IoT devices would change the way SEO operates soon. Hence content creators need to optimise their content for IoT devices by using the right scheme such as
- Prioritising your content for voice-based output
- Create straight to the point content
- Using a local SEO if the IoT devices are set up in residential places
Since IOT is a relatively new development, you’ll want to monitor the progress to see how you create a marketing strategy that would be optimised for Internet Of Things. Also, ensure you maintain a flexible attitude as you continue to experiment in other to find the most effective strategy.
Link schemes no longer work
When you get a link to your website from an authority website, it’s a sign to the search engine crawlers and visitors that your site contains reliable information. If your site keeps getting such links, Google will see it as authoritative vote, and it won’t be long before it gets on the top rank.
Some people have deviously tried to use this method to get ranked. They do this by buying backlinks from link directories.
If you’ve been using link schemes such as manipulating backlinks, know they are no longer applicable if you intend to get on Google’s top rank through organic SEO search. They even lead to a drop in your site’s ranking.
Google became stricter on back links by bringing up a new algorithm penalty which bans or de-index defaulting sites. Google only allows linking through guest posts and other natural linking methods.
The rise of social media
Using social media for search engine optimisation is one method brands are taking seriously. It is easy to see why many business websites have a followup on various social media platforms such as Twitter and Facebook.
The more engagements or shares your post gets, the more likely your’d get links from other sites and more searches which can increase your search engine rank. Therefore, it’s important to provide informational and engaging contents regularly on social media.
Quality content still matters
No matter how much Google updates their algorithm, they will never ignore quality and useful contents because that’s what their users need. When you provide your target with quality contents, they will share with others, subscribe to your website, and visit regularly.
Google always rewards well-written and informational contents with top rankings while pushing those with spelling and grammar errors and no useful information down the ladder.
So if you want your contents to rank high at the top of search engines, you need to provide quality non-plagiarised materials with few ads.
How do brands ensure they survive SEO change?
Businesses or brands should focus on thinking about the customer and providing as much value through every means possible.
You can do this by improving your user experience on your website through the following methods:
Making your posts easy to read
This includes using shorter paragraphs for your content, about 3-4 sentences and not more. However, avoid using single paragraphs as it could make your content look like bullet points. Shorter sections make your content easy to read through and also understand.
Always include sub-headers to make visitors engage more with the website. Subheaders make it easier to scan through your article than when you’ve written in continuous run-on-lines.
You should also try as much as possible to include bullet points, images, videos, and graphs to ensure your site visitors don’t get discouraged from reading further. Also, aim to deliver quality contents rather than focusing on quantity.
Accommodate voice search
Since voice searchers are not typing but using devices such as Siri, Alexa, or Google home to help them search for answers. These devices use data from SERP to provide them with solutions.
If you want to optimise your content to get featured on the snippet box, ensure they are answering questions and not just discussing a topic because voice users ask questions.
Think long tail keywords with three or more words in a sentence as research says they are more inclined to use longer keywords as they are not typing. For example, rather than typing, “diabetes diet,” they’ll say “What food should a diabetic eat?”
Your contents should also be conversational and straight to the point content.
Site speed has been one factor Google considers when ranking websites. No one wants to spend more than a minute waiting for a site to load. They will instead look for a fast opening site.
So, you’ll want to reduce the overall bounce rate making your website easy to load.
You can check your site speed using Google SEO tools such as page speed insights, accelerated mobile pages project and think with Google.
Use YouTube videos
In recent times, YouTube videos have been ranking at the top five to ten of Google search which makes it glaring that it is one of the SEO methods you’ll want to invest. But you will need to ensure your video is SEO friendly because the title, description, the filename of the video has a role to play in optimisation.
YouTube is also one of the largest search engines in the world owned by Google’s parent company.
You need to stay updated on issues concerning SEO and how they affect your ranking because new methods come up every day and if you don’t act immediately, you might get left behind.