Wondering how you should tailor your SEO to the demands of 2019? The best way to stay ahead of the game is to look at what the trends will be and let that inform your immediate and long range goals. Here are the 5 top SEO trends we predict for 2019.
Google unveiled its switch to mobile-first indexing in March of 2018, the progression from prioritizing desktop to mobile crawling had some fall out, but as the kinks work out, Google is closer and closer to completing the process.
So, what does this mean for your SEO? Well, if you haven’t optimized your website to be mobile-friendly, that needs to be priority number one. Keep in mind that your desktop site is still indexed, but the mobile site will be used for indexing and ranking.
How to Become Mobile Friendly
1. If your mobile site still uses an m-dot domain, you may
want to consider removing that and just going for a responsive mobile type,
that way crawlers don’t have to verify that both pages have the same content. Be
prepared for Google to take a
while to register all the changes, but in the long run this will be
2. Use a crawler simulator to evaluate how your website is seen by search engine spiders.
3. Check how quickly your page loads, as this is a significant factor in ranking. More on that in the next section.
Google’s primary purpose in ranking results in SERPs is to ensure that the users find a relevant, user-friendly page when they search. One of those factors, which we all know as users, is the speed at which pages load.
Page speed for both the desktop, but specifically for mobile, is incredibly important, as now mobile page speed is a ranking factor. Additionally, the speed of your page is analyzed based on how it performs for users over time, the Chrome User Experience Report.
Checking your page’s load speed from one location or device won’t give you the full picture, as it used to, and optimization of your page also impacts your ranking.
How to Fix Page Speed
Making sure that your page is fully optimized for mobile viewing must be a priority. Fix anything that may impact how quickly your page loads. For now, check out Google’s rules for optimization, though be aware that they will be modified in May.
Build Your Brand Reputation
Having your brand mentioned on the internet is an important ranking factor. Both linked and unlinked mentions create the impression that your brand is established.
Now, unlike the old adage “there’s no such thing as bad publicity” is not true when it comes to the discussion of your brand. Google takes into account the context in which your brand is mentioned. If it’s mentioned often as a company that isn’t responsive to complaints—that’s not going to help your ranking.
How to Build a Brand Online
Keep tabs on how your brand is mentioned online. Consider using a tool that keeps track of linkless mentions. Consider teaming up with influencers who will discuss the merits of your brand, even better if they’re already on board.
Look at the competition. How are they spreading brand awareness? This allows you to create a strategy that lets you evaluate your target audience from a variety of angles.
How to Deal with GDPR
When the EU passed the General Data Protection Regulation gives the ownership of the data created by users online to themselves, and companies have to tell users what data they have collected to that effect if they request it. Non-compliance can mean punitive damages.
More than likely, if you’re reading this, your company isn’t based in the EU, but that doesn’t mean that you shouldn’t comply with GDPR. For instance, Google has informed its practices with regard to its data collection. It deletes all data collected after 26 months, but this can be changed at your discretion, and it can be deleted upon user request.
How to Be Compliant
For those of you without European customers, go ahead and switch to the “do not automatically expire” under the “user and event data retention” option. And go ahead and plan to have to take GDPR into account in the future, as this is probably going to extend beyond the EU in the future.
If you do have European customers, you need to be more proactive than those who don’t. Go over all of the ways you’re collecting user data and make sure that private data isn’t being distributed to Google Analytics.
Change your cookie consent form to reflect what info you collect, why, where it’s stored, and let the know that it’s protected.
You can continue using Google Tag Manager if you activate IP anonymization. You will continue to receive data from where your traffic is coming, but you won’t have to worry about violating GDRP.
Welcome to Amazon
In 2018, Amazon had nearly 50% of ecommerce sales. No other online retailer comes close. This suggests that when consumers are looking to buy a product, chances are they look on Amazon first, even if they don’t buy there (and, they often buy there too).
If you sell products that can be sold on Amazon, you need to make sure that yours can be found within Amazon. Yes, Amazon is not a search engine like Google, but if you sell a product that can be marketed on Amazon, not doing so will leave you out of half of the ecommerce market.
How to Be Strategic
Check your keyword use for popularity and preciseness. Use Amazon to do so. Use high quality images. Use back-end keywords, and make sure that you’re knowledgeable about how people are discussing your company and products in reviews. Make sure you’re responsive to customer issues.
A lot of big changes have come down, and it does seem as if they’re daunting, but taking the time to take action around these trends will help distinguish your business from its competitor. If you need help with addressing your SEO strategy, contact us today. We are a Digital Marketing Agency and Website Design firm located in Falls Church, Virginia, in the greater Washington DC metro area including Maryland and Northern Virginia. We specialize in search engine optimization (SEO), content marketing and social media management for businesses in the Mid-Atlantic. We work with medical practices, dermatologists, plastic surgeons, medical spas, dispensaries, e-commerce websites, lawyers, accountants, financial planners, real estate and any field that needs help marketing a highly technical field.
How Capital Practice Can Help You Be Relevant Online
Capital Practice Consulting is a Digital Marketing Agency and Website Design firm located in Falls Church, Virginia in the greater Washington DC metro area including Maryland and Northern Virginia.
We specialize in search engine optimization (SEO), content marketing and social media management for businesses in the Mid-Atlantic.
We work with medical practices, dermatologists, plastic surgeons, medical spas, dispensaries, e-commerce websites, lawyers, accountants, financial planners, real estate and any field that needs help marketing a highly technical field.