Search Engine Optimization Trends: 2016
We are almost near to the 4th Quarter of 2016 and I think its time already, to get prepared on digital strategies for 2017. SEO plays a vital role in any companies digital strategy and as the world of SEO continues to change, we the marketers are continuously forced to make adjustments to rank on search engines. Almost 93% of the online experiences begin with the search so, I think it’s a good idea to take a moment to go through the development and trends we have seen this year in SEO to understand where we are likely heading in coming year.
Below are the few trends, which I think is important in coming years:
Mobile and speed:
Google launched its mobile updates in April 2015, it was intended to reward brands with mobile friendly websites. This is because, with the increase in the use of smartphones, users are getting more involved in mobile and more and more searches are being performed on mobile than desktop.
With the mobile update at the end of 2015 Google introduced AMP(Accelerated Mobile Page) project, considering the importance of speed for mobile devices. Data shows, 41% of users will leave the site, if it takes more than 3 secs to load. AMP’s mainly focuses on micro moment, the reflex of people turning to a device to answer an immediate need. It strips down all the unwanted stuffs from a website to make it load faster.
Considering these points, in 2017, it seems that the mobile compatibility and site speed will play a major role in SEO. You can start optimizing your site by following few tips below:
– make your website mobile compatible
– avoid using unnecessary images and optimize your images
– keep essential cookies only
– compress your js/css and make sure to decrese the number of http requests, etc.
Changes on SERPs:
This year, we tracked some experiments being performed by Google on SERP’s(Search Engine Result Pages). Tests were seen to be performed with the length of meta descriptions and titles. Though there hasn’t been any formal announcement, what we can see is increasing opportunities for content writers to add more keywords and descriptions in website metas. Focus on adding main keywords in title and adding longer meta descriptions with more keywords to take its advantage.
Another important trends which we can see increasingly adopted by all the search engines including Google is Schema Markup. Schema makes search engines easier to understand what a page is about and the different elements it contains, allowing them to return more useful results to searchers. We have been hearing a lot about google’s rankbrain algorithm and artificial intelligence, so, machine learning will be the focus in coming years. And when it comes to Machine learning, structured data provided by Schema will be what necessary. Though it is unsure when google will implement these changes but its better to be prepared ahead of time to take its advantage.
More information on Schema and its usage on Schema.org.
These are few of the SEO trends in 2016 which I think is important to take into consideration and act accordingly.