In late 2019, Google introduced to the world BERT, a new algorithm that would greatly influence many internet trends in 2020. One of the things that BERT will affect is SEO trends. It’s thus essential for website owners to keep themselves updated with these trends so that they can work on improving their ranking. So, here are ten trends by Stacey Wonder, content marketer at EssayTigers, that will likely be prevalent in 2020 when it comes to SEO.
1. The focus will be more on optimized and high-quality content
Continuing from 2019’s trends, the content will continue to affect everything in SEO in 2020 too. It will not only affect the way you structure your website, but it will also affect the kinds of links that you build as well as the internal linking strategy that you implement.
Ultimately, to be successful in 2020, you must ensure that your content is both valuable and relevant. Aim for having the most informative content on the internet that users will enjoy more than the content put up by your competitors.
Doing so will also ensure that you stay ahead of your competitors when it comes to long-tail searches that make up about 70% of all searches performed on the web. In addition, quality content will help portray you as an authority on that specific topic.
2. Featured snippets
When it comes to search results, everyone wants to be in the top position. Going one step ahead of that, Google has introduced a position 0: featured snippets. In 2020, there will be increasing competition for companies to be at position 0.
Most SEO experts have already learned how to make use of Google’s new feature in the best way possible. Basically, featured snippets are about having relevant, concise, and quality answers to common questions.
It’ll be a big mistake to ignore this trend since it drives over half of the clicks. Plus, content creators can make use of the new feature to showcase their website, ultimately landing them a place at position 0.
3. Expertise, Authoritativeness & Trustworthiness
Just like in 2019, 2020 will also see Google focusing on not only the reputation but also the authority and expertise of the company (E-A-T). Along with that, it will keep a check on the individuals that publish content on the company’s behalf.
Thus, it will become crucial for website owners to pay close attention to the authority and expertise of an author talking about a particular subject.
4. Voice search
Voice search plays a big role in virtual assistance and will be a great trend in 2020. It’ll also have a significant effect on SEO.
But what SEO experts need to look out for is that voice searches are drastically different from text searches since the former is more conversational. Moreover, when it comes to voice search, the queries are also longer, so websites will have to focus more on long-tail keywords.
For 2020, the content must also be designed, keeping a voice search in mind. It’s important to know than 50% of the searches in 2019 were carried out with voice search.
The takeaway of this trend is that for 2020, you need to use entire phrases instead of keywords so that users come across your content easily.
5. UX and technicalities
Perhaps, the biggest trend that SEO experts should focus on is user experience and how it can be improved in the new year. This includes a bunch of things, including search engine result pages and the experience people have with your landing page. Along with that, it includes the experience that users have once they leave your website, such as marketing campaigns and targeted ads.
UX also includes some technical SEO, and the two factors can’t be talked about without discussing page speed and site speed. With Chrome’s slow warning badges and Google Search Console’s speed reports, Google’s focus on site speed is pretty clear.
What this means is that 2020 might bring along cases where companies need to completely redesign page templates and reengineer the way their site loads.
6. Local search
Research shows that 80% of the searches revolve around nearby products or products. Plus, 50% of searches also result in the user either physically visiting the local store or placing an order online. In 2020, this trend will continue to be on the rise.
The trend of local search has also become highly successful because of the increasing use of mobile phones. It is now easier than ever to just unlock your phone and find what you’re looking for with just a few taps.
As in 2019, 2020 will also see local searches being driven by real reviews and ratings. Thus, websites will have to work on optimizing their content for local searches with location maps and more reviews.
7. Mobile SEO
It’s high time that you have not only a mobile-optimized but also a mobile-friendly website if you don’t already. The times have changed, and companies now need to start realizing that the majority of people stumble across their website with a mobile device instead of a desktop computer.
That’s not the only mobile SEO trend we’ll see in 2020. SEO experts must also look at mobile SERPs. Doing so will help them understand their competitors, the traffic they will have to deal with, and the kind of optimization they need to be successful.
8. Keyword context and search intent
Google’s algorithm, BERT, prioritizes search intent to teach machines to become more human-like so that the search results are more relevant and accurate. It is expected that in 2020, this will become a big thing, and SEO experts will get have to come up with ways for optimizing keyword context and search intent.
With many websites, visitors typically look for 3 kinds of results: find, know, and take action. Thus, when creating content, SEO experts need to take care of navigation, information, and transaction since these three will determine the way the content is to be structured and the keywords that are to be used.
9. Importance of structure
As mentioned earlier, quality content will be a priority in 2020. However, Google algorithms are still unable to understand the context fully. Therefore, we need to provide some hints to the search engine so that it can understand and deliver relevant results, keeping in mind the intent of the searchers.
In other words, in 2020, SEO experts need to structure their data such that it helps the search engines in understanding the elements on a page, headlines, text blocks, and how those relate or communicate to other elements, and how pages within a website relate to each other.
10. Brand building
A survey demonstrated that fewer people click on some of the search results, even when they’re among the top ten results. Primarily, this is because human beings are known to be creatures of habit, so they only tend to click on names or results that they recognize. Ultimately, they would only click on big, known brands. However, 2020 could be the year for smaller businesses with branding. In 2020, branding will no longer be an option for SEO; it will become a must. This year, brand building is the only way to be successful and compete with big names.