3 SEO Trends You Need to Know for Better Conversion in 2019
If you do business online, you encounter articles about SEO a lot. These articles often talk about which SEO strategies are on the rise.
It can be intimidating for anyone with beginner-level knowledge in SEO. If you deal with several other issues, you don’t have time to learn every SEO trend that comes along.
No matter what trends pop up, keep one thing in mind. SEO is headed in a specific direction. It’s one where search engines get smarter and propel the most helpful content to the top of rankings.
In this blog post, we did the research for you. You can learn about five major SEO trends that can do wonders for your online presence in 2019. We’ve removed the fluff and started with trends you can apply right away.
Let’s get started.
Become a featured snippet.
First of all, you might be wondering what a featured snippet is. If you’ve ever looked up how to do something on Google, there’s a huge chance you’ve already seen one.
When you search “how to fix a radiator leak” on Google, it will show you more than search results. Underneath the search field, there will be a box containing an image along with a list of instructions taken from a website.
The said website doesn’t have to rank first in search engine results, but it did something right. It managed to skip the rankings entirely and appear in a section experts now call “position zero.”
This doesn’t only apply to instructions. Most of the time, if you type a question directly into Google’s search bar, there will be an excerpt from a website that answers your question in position zero.
Whether you’re learning how to cook roast beef or want to know what a featured snippet is, you’ll find the answer in position zero.
In essence, featured snippets are quick answers to questions you asked Google. They’re taken from a website and contain links and images. They can appear as paragraphs, lists, tables or even videos.
How to Appear as a Featured Snippet
Think about your target audience’s commonly asked questions.
Voice search, which we’ll discuss later, works hand in hand with featured snippets. It’s when users speak directly into their phones to look for answers instead of typing words.
For example, a user searching for things while typing on a phone may use “cars for sale sydney.” But a person who’s speaking will phrase things differently. He might say, “Where do I find cars for sale in Sydney?” The intent is the same, but the words and medium used are different.
We mentioned earlier that featured snippets answer user questions. Since you’re targeting a specific audience, you need to know what questions they have.
- What are their most common questions?
- How will they phrase those questions?
You need to think about how your target audience phrases questions. People speak differently depending on their age, background and other factors. A millennial at the beginning of her career will state things differently from a CEO who’s been in business for fifty years.
Don’t answer the most common questions.
You might be confused at this point.
If I’m advising you not to answer the most common user questions, why should you even think of them in the first place?
Ranking for common user questions would be hard. Since they’re common, a lot of other websites target and create content to answer them. You may prefer to go with lesser used questions where there’s less competition. Your chances of becoming a featured snippet are higher.
For example, if you search “how to fix a radiator leak,” Google does show you a list of instructions in a box. Underneath that, however, it also shows you similar questions people also use.
Instead of creating content that answers “how to fix a radiator leak,” consider answer the other questions. You’re essentially creating the same content, but you’re phrasing things in a different manner.
Get found in local search results.
If you’re looking for a pizza restaurant near you, you don’t just enter “pizza restaurant” in Google’s search bar and hit enter. You use the words “pizza restaurant” and add your location at the end to narrow the search down.
That’s exactly what local SEO is. You’re targeting users in a specific location, hoping they’ll find your business and choose you.
According to a Google survey, 4 in 5 consumers use search engines to find local information. 50% of consumers who search via smartphones visit a store within a day.
But only 56% of business owners have claimed their business listings on Google. A huge mistake and one you want to avoid.
You don’t want to be a part of the 56% who are losing out on potential customers. That’s why knowing more about local SEO is of the utmost importance.
Don’t worry. Getting started in local SEO isn’t as difficult as you might think. In fact, you can do it in a matter of minutes by claiming your Google My Business Listing.
How to Get Started in Local SEO
Create a Google My Business listing.
If you’ve ever looked for a business nearby, you’ve already seen how a Google My Business Listing looks.
It’s usually right next to Google search results, and it shows you an establishment’s name, address, contact information and user reviews.
Creating one is as easy as filling out a form. Claiming it, however, is a bit more difficult. You need to prove you own the business via mail, phone, email, instant verification or bulk verification.
Once you’ve created your listing, you can do so many things with it. You can update your information, respond to user reviews and answer questions from current and potential customers.
Your listing also functions as a social media page. You can post photos and information about your products and events. If a user comes across your business in Google search results, they’ll see all your posts without you having to pay a cent. It’s all free.
Learning about local SEO may sound time-consuming, but it’s not. Creating a Google My Business Listing is a great way to get started. It’s user-friendly and the only resource you have to spend is time (and you don’t have to spend much of it).
Gear up for voice search.
Voice search is a type of technology that lets devices recognise what you’re saying, resulting in search results without you having to type a word. It’s poised to take over the world, and experts say half of all searches will be through voice by 2020.
Earlier, we mentioned that voice search and featured snippets go hand in hand. That’s absolutely true. Featured snippets attempt to answer questions posed by users through voice search.
However, aside from featured snippets, you can also attempt to rank for standard search engine results with voice search.
How to Rank Higher Through Voice Search
Get to know your audience.
Voice search is so much more personal than searching for things through a keyboard. Your age, background and location affect how you speak, and that comes across in how you use voice search.
A lot of experts say that you need to be more conversational when attempting to rank for your keywords through voice search.
However, conversational could mean so many different things depending on your audience. A millennial speaks differently compared to someone born in 1950.
So, it’s vital that you get to know your demographic.
Intent is key.
It’s the reason why a user is searching for something and could mean the difference between a sale and a random visitor.
For example, two users are searching for radiators on Google. User A used the keyword “how to fix a radiator.” User B used the keyword “radiators for sale near me.” They’re looking for the same thing but for two very different reasons.
If you sell radiators, you could create content that answers User A’s question. It’s helpful and could drive more traffic to your website, but will it make you a sale?
User B is most likely your ideal customer. They used the words “for sale” in their keyword which means they’re searching with the intent of buying.
Get to know your target audience. Deep dive into why they’re using specific keywords. You might rank higher through voice search for a keyword, but it’s not going to benefit you if the user intent isn’t aligned with your goals.
Despite the trends that come and go throughout the years, one thing is clear. Content is still king and the biggest SEO trends of 2019 point toward that direction.
Search engines are trying to find the best content as quickly as possible, and these trends are attempting to cope with that.
Featured snippets show users answers to their questions in a snap. You can skip ahead of top search engine results and land right on position zero.
It’s unbelievable that 56% of businesses haven’t claimed their Google My Business listings. Don’t be one of them by claiming your listing and getting a head start in local SEO.
Voice search is poised to take over the world of SEO. Get to know how your users speak and how they phrase questions and provide answers ahead of competitors.
Ready to catch up on the SEO trends of 2019? Cornerstone Digital is an SEO agency in Sydney that would be glad to help you. Call us on (02) 8211 0668 or email us at [email protected]
A self-professed book and digital marketing nerd, Darlyn Herradura focuses on building trust between customers and businesses with the written word. She understands that creating valuable content is the best way to get found online and happily spends her time doing that.