SEO is the most effective way to attract an audience to your website and other online platforms. SEO always comes up with new changes and updates. With proper strategy, you can improve the quality and quantity of your web exposure and traffic.
In the year 2020, all marketers have realized the importance of organic web content. With the trend of new technologies like artificial intelligence, the evolution of mobile experiences, voice assistants, and many more, the SEO landscape has changed in many profound ways.
The digital marketers are gearing up to prepare with the best SEO strategy for the coming year 2021.
Here are listed down a few tips to follow in 2021 to boost your SEO ranking.
1. E.A.T OPTIMIZATION
EAT stands for Expertise, Authoritativeness, and Trustworthiness. This is a major SEO trend for 2021. Google began this algorithm in 2018 to ensure legitimate information is provided for medical websites mainly. This then expanded to YMYL – ‘Your Money Your Life’ sites that published content for users’ mental and physical well-being.
Continuing with this theory, Google now flags the content which is plagiarized or unworthy with the help of EAT and YMYL. One must ensure in 2021 that their content is correct, trustworthy, relevant, and unique.
Also, using a good number of relevant backlinks and reference links on your blogs and guest posts can impress Google that your site is trustworthy. Along with this, make your social media planforms interesting, updated, and relevant.
2. VOICE SEARCH OPTIMIZATION
This is an era of smart voice assistants. More than 50% of the online searches are made through voice. Virtual assistants, smart speakers, and smartphones have completely transformed the way one searches now.
In 2021, the websites must be upgraded to have embedded options of voice commands or voice searches. Also, they must be compatible with the prevalent smart voice assistants ruling in the market that are; Alexa, Siri, Google Assistant, etc.
Voice searches are usually in the form of how we actually talk, ask questions, or make statements. Keeping this in mind, long-tail keywords must be considered that allow exact matches for your service, product, or offer.
3. USER EXPERIENCE OPTIMIZATION
UX optimized sites are a must in 2021 to boost your SEO efforts. In simple words, if your site is not user friendly, neither users nor Google will be interested in going through your website.
To have good UX ensure mobile-friendliness, safety, quality content, fast load time, quality hosting, etc. Content must be easy to understand and search. With the growing importance of UX, Google is in fact planning to launch a new page experience update in 2021.
This new page experience by Google will be based on the following points:
- First Input Delay (FID): FID under 100ms, is regarded as good. This basically measures the interaction time user has taken on your website.
- Largest Contentful Paint (LCP): It checks the loading time of the webpage. LCP less than 2 seconds is good, below 4 seconds needs improvement and more than 6 seconds is considered poor.
- Cumulative Layout Shift (CLS): It refers to the visual stability of the page. If the page element move or changes position while page loading, then CLS is high and regarded as bad UX.
4. FEATURED SNIPPETS
To stand out in the online crowd in 2021, Schema Structured Markup must be used. A featured snippet gives a preview of the actual content featured on your website.
Schema markup has a vocabulary of microdata or tags that can be added to your website’s HTML code. This makes it easy for search engines to read and understand the website content, also creates informative search results for users.
With rich-featured snippets, the chances of ranking on page 1 in Google SERP gets higher. This not only improves SEO but also attracts maximum traffic to your site by increasing Click-Through-Rate.
5. VIDEO OPTIMIZATION
With each passing year, people are becoming interested in more visual forms of content. One such trend is properly optimized videos; that have already influenced SEO in 2020 and this is only going to grow in 2021.
Following video stats must be taken into consideration:
- As compared to plain texts, the CTR of video searches is more than 41%
- The online traffic doubles with video thumbnails in search results
- The on-screen time of visitors increases by 2.6 times on a page with videos.
In 2021, the online arena would be more competitive. To ensure good UX with videos, you must optimize its upload speed, front-loaded description, size, keywords, etc.
6. QUALITY OF HOSTING
One cannot spare to negotiate in any form to survive in the online world of 2021. For this, good hosting must be considered. Following are the major reasons to have a good hosting:
- Security: With the growing online traffic, site security is really important even for SEO ranking. Google has approved that HTTPS, with an S at the end of HTTP reflects a secure website connection. This is also a key factor in ranking. Visitors may not prefer sites they see without ’S’. This also prevents bounce rates.
- Support: With good quality hosting, comes many benefits alongside. A 24/7 trained tech support team is on standby, to ensure your website does not get stuck. This will get the website back up and allow it to run again smoothly.
- Speed: The page loading speed of a website not only affects the user experience but also the SEO rankings. Good hosting factors like availability of content delivery network (CDN), type of hard drive technology, and optimized hosting for content management are important for page speed.
Service (Uptime/Downtime): To ensure the website remains up 99.99% times, good quality hosting is a must. The cheaper and poorer the host quality, the more chances are to let down the website. If your website is accessible 99% time, Google will be able to crawl it and improve the ranking.
7. IMPROVE LOCAL SEO
Giving importance to local and small businesses has become more important and popular, especially after the pandemic in 2020. People are not focusing on products that symbolize “Vocal for local”.
To go in this direction, numerous small-scale businesses have listed themselves on Google My Business. This treed is only going to grow more in 2021. Thus, it is very important to work on your local business listings and optimize it effectively to survive the competitive world in the next year.
Having a GMB account drives more traffic to the website, social channels, and other online platforms you are associated with. This also helps in increasing your visibility in search results.
People are now compassionate to local businesses and demand love for them through social media. Working on local SEO efficiently will give more positive results in this.
8. MOBILE FRIENDLINESS
The dependency on mobile has only increased manifold, especially after the pandemic lockdown. Mobile is a full package for multi-purpose usage whether for personal or professional use.
Mobiles are more popular for online therapy, online marketing, online shopping, online music, movies, and anything online can be performed in it. With mobile optimization, it means your website must have mobile responsive designs.
This will enhance a good user experience, decrease bounce rates, improve CTR and impressions. Apart from this, Google will also be able to crawl and index mobile web designs to be ranked on SERP.
By 2021, the approach must be mobile-first and then work on web designs that are desktop friendly.
9. RICH QUALITY & IN-DEPTH CONTENT
The content was, is, and will always remain the king in the online marketing world. Because the right kind of words in your infographics, blog posts, articles, stories, social media posts, etc will attract the audience as well as the Google crawlers.
Content will always remain an evergreen requirement in the technology world. Because of the rapid advancements, updated content is always a dire requirement. By rich content, it refers to informative, well-written, relevant, compelling, in-depth description and of increasing importance in the SEO stakes.
User must be appealed to read the content and it must be worth his reading time. Longer content enhances positive SEO results. According to a research in Backlinko by Brian Dean, by analyzing 11.8 million Google search results it was stated longer content ranks higher in Google SERP. An average content has 1,890 words to be ranked on the first page of Google searches.
10. ARTIFICIAL INTELLIGENCE
Artificial intelligence influences the way how people interact with online content. A major Google AI algorithm namely “RankBrian”, launched a few years back had an important role in improving ranking in the SERP.
Google scientists state that this AI algorithm has a unique ability to learn. It works on signals that are based on insights and discoveries that people in information retrieval have.
It is expected that AI will only improve SEO trends in the future.
The backend work to improve SEO in 2021, will be more rigorous only. The above key factors must be taken into consideration while working on SEO. The list is only going to increase in the future, seeing the fast-growing advancements in the technology world.