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Biggest SEO Changes In 2018 So Far

Google is constantly changing their algorithms and it’s the job of SEO experts to stay on top of them so here are some of the major changes Google has made this year.

1. Relevance 2.0

Increasingly, it’s getting harder to convince Google you have great content. There are a number of ways Google assesses content quality, one of them being Latent Semantic Indexing. By looking at millions of websites and keywords used in them, Google learns which terms are related and builds expectations as to the terms that are likely to appear in a given context. This helps Google decide whether a piece of content is “comprehensive.”

What Can You Do About It?

How do you make sure your content is actually useful to readers? By researching the top-ranking pages in your niche and looking for the features they share. You should also spend some serious time and money on creating amazing content.

2. The Rise Of Snippet Features

Are you assuming organic ranking is the way to get as much traffic as possible? Increasingly featured snippets are stealing searchers’ attention and clicks from organic listings.

What Can You Do About It?

With the evolution of snippet features, it’s critical that you track your rankings within these features, and monitor the features that show up for your keywords and are potentially stealing traffic from you. You can do this with a few different SEO tracking tools that will enhance your organic results.

3. Website Speed

How fast your website loads is increasingly important. But how fast is fast, exactly? Google expects pages to load in under three seconds. Yes, three seconds! That means you should always be testing and ensuring your website isn’t slowed down by heavy videos or bad hosting.

What Can You Do About It?

The first step you should take is Google’s page speed test. The test is integrated into WebSite Auditor and available in its free version. Just launch WebSite Auditor and create a project. Jump to Content Analysis and specify the page you’d like to test. In a moment, you’ll see a selection of on-page factors calculated for you.

4. Voice Search Is The Real Deal

Although in terms of SEO, Voice search is relatively new, it is gaining a lot of traction and will continue to be a big deal in the next couple of years, if not longer. Google reports that 55 percent of teens and 40 percent of adults use voice search daily; and. Voice search calls for a whole new keyword research routine: Voice searchers use normal, conversational sentences instead of the odd-sounding query lingo.

What can you do about it?

Again there are a couple of great tools to help you research which questions people are searching using voice. You should be doing your keyword research and make sure your website is in all your local directories. Location is going to be key. Talk to your SEO expert to find out what they are doing to get ready for voice search.

5. Mobile First

With the rise of voice search, over half of Google searches coming from mobile devices, the impending mobile-first index, and mobile-friendliness being a ranking factor, you simply can’t afford to ignore mobile SEO anymore.

What Can You Do About It?

It should be given by now that all your pages are mobile-friendly. Google’s mobile test is available in WebSite Auditor, under Content Analysis. Enter the URL of the page you’d like to test, switch to Technical factors, and scroll down to Page usability (Mobile).

6. Useless Backlinks

For years, links have been the trust signal for search engines — one that SEOs spent the most time on optimizing. But times are changing, and websites that have useless or are stuffing backlinks into their content won’t be ranked as highly on search engines.

What Can You Do About It?

In addition to a backlink checker, use a web monitoring tool to find mentions of your brand and products. You should be taking any useless links down as Google will penalize you for this.

Conclusion

If you have any questions about SEO or the upcoming trends give us a call at PLUR. We are happy to help you achieve Google greatness!

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