What SEO Means in 2019

What SEO Means in 2019

What is SEO in 2019, and How Does It Affect Traffic to Your Site?

Search engine optimization (SEO) is in a constant state of change and evolution. But, if you want to generate quality traffic to your business’ website, then you need to be on top of that transformation. Figuring how to get a good position on the search engine results pages (SERPs) is the key to attracting potential customers online and generating sales.

But, What does SEO Mean Today?

By now you probably realize that SEO involves the process of increasing the online visibility of a website or web page. You may also be familiar with some of the SEO best practices, such as optimizing titles and headings for keywords, getting links from relevant, authority websites, producing a lot of content, and interlinking your website’s internal pages.

But SEO today goes much further than this. Many of the current trends in SEO stem from the increasing number of consumers who are turning to their mobile devices in search of information combined with the explosion of online content created every day and the desire on the part of search engines to give users the most relevant, quality search results.

In response, search giants such as Google, have been busy over the past few years tweaking their search engine ranking factors. Lately, Google been giving search priority to websites that offer:

  • Quality, relevant content
  • A seamless experience across a range of mobile and desktop devices
  • An easy-to-follow website hierarchy and fast page loading times
  • A secure connection (HTTPS)

But these ranking factors will keep evolving in response to evolving technology and consumer trends.

So, if you’ve tried to “optimize” your website and still are not seeing quality traffic (or much of any traffic for that matter), it’s not necessarily because your content is bad or you’re doing something wrong. The game has just gotten a lot harder.

What SEO Should You Be Doing Right Now?

Aside from the SEO basics, if you own a small business, there are several things you should concentrate when it comes to your SEO strategy:

Mobile search. A little over a year ago, Google started mobile-first indexing. What this means is if a website has a mobile-friendly version, it will be indexed and served to mobile users instead of the standard desktop version. Doing so helps to ensure that mobile users get the best experience to fit their device. A website that doesn’t have mobile-friendly version will likely provide an awkward experience to mobile users, who may then leave for other websites– most likely their competitors.

If you are not sure whether or not your website is mobile-friendly, Google offers a free mobile test tool. If your website isn’t optimized for mobile devices, it will offer suggestions to improve the user experience.

User experience. This brings us to the topic of user experience. If your website doesn’t present a logical, easy-to-navigate framework, provide opportunities to engage with or look at other content, and your pages are loading very slowly, then it will negatively affect your website’s ranking in the SERPs.

You should also pay attention to the kinds of calls to action you have on your website as well as where they are located. If visitors are incessantly bombarded with imposing banners and pop-ups asking for their email address, not only will it annoy these people, but it can also badly hurt your ranking.

Quality content. That said, a big part of the user experience involves the content you put on your website. Providing high-quality content means creating articles and other resources that increase the time on a given page as well as the other pages on your website. This content should be helpful, informative, entertaining and/or answer your visitors’ questions.

You don’t necessarily have to create content that is long, but it does have to provide plenty of value. Thin, low-quality content will only negatively affect your ranking and hurt your online reputation.

Do Keywords Still Matter?

Many business owners wonder if keywords still matter these days. The answer is that they do. But search engines are getting more advanced in being able to determine the quality of the content that surrounds them. Advancements in voice search and natural language processing and geotagging also mean that more emphasis is being placed conversational phrases, long-tail keywords, and questions, such as “What is the closest flower shop near me?”

In short, SEO is alive and well today, and it will continue to impact the traffic that reaches your business website.

Need a little help with your business’ SEO strategy?