SEO Trends For 2018
Some businesses are content to build a website and forget about it. That’s not a smart practice, and don’t expect to make money if that is your strategy. The odds are stacked against you.
It’s a new year, and the perfect time for a new philosophy: Put the website first. Sound crazy? Sound drastic? I hope not! It’s crazy not to. It’s just a recognition of how people now purchase goods and services today. Their journey begins on the internet, and probably ends on the internet. You want their journey to begin on your website. We hope this sequence of events doesn’t scare you. If it does, then this article is for you!
Here are the reasons why:
- Competitors are always updating their sites.
- Google is always changing its metrics.
- Your business is always changing and evolving too.
- Stale websites get ignored by prospective customers.
If you want your website to bring you leads on a regular basis, you will need to provide it the respect it deserves. What kind of sense does it make to spend 60 hours per week on your “brick and mortar” operation, and spend no time—or money—on your web presence (i.e. advertising)? It doesn’t. And, yet we see it all the time. Better performance is expected of a website for adding to revenue, often without any budget for development and upkeep. It’s the old “self-fulfilling prophecy.”
Take our admonitions about SEO trends in 2018 to heart. They are for real. This is what we do for a living for about 50 clients. We’re talking in real time about real issues. Ignore our warnings at your own risk. In brief:
1. Quality Content.
The way a site is written is very important. Google bots read every word on every page of your site. This form of artificial intelligence (AI) can distinguish great composition from mediocre composition. How the article is written. Agreement of verbs…everything. Scary, I know. But true it is. Keywords, number of times they are used. Keywords that relate to them. It all matters. It is all judged by Google in establishing authority, and flowing from the site’s authority, ranking for your website.
2. Deep Knowledge Of Content.
How does the site really help the user understand your service or product? Does it provide definitions? Does it have links to important sources? Does it have an explainer video on the page? Google gives higher authority, and thereby higher rankings, to sites that demonstrate expertise and deep knowledge of the subject matter.
3. Word Count Matters.
We have proprietary software that researches and calculates in seconds the word count of articles we are writing for a website based on that site’s likely competitors for those keywords. This enables us to determine the word count for the page that will give us the authority the site needs to begin its forward ranking process on Google. If you do not have access to data like this, then please count the number of words on the pages of your competitors’ sites that cover the same topic that you are writing about. If your competitors’ pages are around 1000 words, and you write only 300—even if it is dynamite content—your site still has to overcome a 700 word deficit. We know that doesn’t sit well with Google.
4. Short Videos.
Up until now videos were optional for Page One authority. Not anymore in our opinion. With marketing professionals predicting that 80% of the content on the Net will be video by the end of next year, you can see that your site will lose ranking if you don’t act now. Short 90 second videos like this one on the home page of stevensdetroit.com explaining one topic or concept will be extremely beneficial going forward. They are so important that we have decided to include the complete production of videos in our SEO services package. Ask your SEO agency if they’ll do the same.
5. Social Participation Matters.
Many businesses think that they can do Social on their own. Of course, they can, however, they need a professional to determine the social strategy for their site and implement it. Why? Google cares and factors Social into your website’s page rank. No Social or once-in-a-while social will hurt your rankings, especially if your competitors are doing it well. Ask your SEO agency to supplement any Social postings your staff undertakes.
Implementing SEO Trends for 2018
Your website should be given the same consideration as your brick-and-mortar operation. All your prospective customers, even your closest friends and family, will research your products and services on Google before they buy from you. The latest research that we have seen says 94% of all purchase decisions begin on-line, and 91% of the searchers do not look beyond Page One of Google. The same is true of other search engines. This all underscores the absolute necessity to follow our research and recommendations. We don’t expect to see the necessity of a good website to boost your advertising to diminish in the coming years! One of the best investments you can make in 2018 for your business is your website to enjoy great sales success for your business in 2018.
These Are The SEO Trends For 2018:
Best wishes and good luck in 2018!
The author, Bob Ottaway, is President and Founder of Ottaway Digital. Established in 1999, it has been a pioneer in SEO, digital advertising & social media since 2006.