Search engine updates, new trends, and changes in social media makes SEO a challenging task. SEO is constantly evolving and you can anticipate some major changes this year as well. Last year, Google tweaked its algorithm 13 times, and these were only the ones made public. Most experts feel changes take place almost every day, which are not brought to the public’s notice. Hence, in this fast changing scenario, what SEO strategies should you implement to stay on top?
Every year, experts debate over the market share of various search engines. Google might be slowly losing its foothold, as other search engines such as Yahoo, DuckDuckGo, and Bing are making fast inroads. Google seems to be out of Firefox’s good books, as Yahoo is all set to be the default for this popular browser. The outlook for Google with Safari also does not seem promising, as Yahoo and Bing are competing hard to be the default search engine for this browser when the deal with Google ends sometime this year. Secondly, OS X, iOS 8 now provides easy options to switch to other browsers from Google. Therefore, strategizing to improve visibility across these three search engines would be a good idea in 2015.
In 2014, mobile traffic finally overtook desktop traffic and this trend is going to continue with the popularity of new mobile devices. Google was the first search engine to recognize the impact of mobile devices, as it gave importance to websites that were more responsive and improved user experience. Now, the search engine even includes a notation in its search results, signifying the website to be mobile friendly. Bing was also quick to follow, as its results now seem to prefer single URLs that are responsive to different devices, rather than separate URLs. It is quite easy to see if your website has the required level of responsiveness, by taking the mobile-friendly test devised by Google.
The influence of social media continues to grow, as Google and other major search engines prefer websites with social media presence compared to others. Social media is no longer simply a platform for sharing content but has become a channel for engaging with your audience and building relationships and reputation. You may consider this a marketing strategy, but your social media presence and level of engagement greatly influence your ranking. Therefore, have a focused social media strategy, over three platforms that improve engagement and traffic.
Keyword rankings are still very important, but if these ranking are not making any difference to your ROI, you need to revamp your strategy fully. Secondly, broad keywords are no longer effective, as they work out expensive, and they could be missing your target audience. Long-tail keywords provide more focused approach; however, you still need to consider the length of the phrase, as many mobile users prefer to enter shorter queries.
Since past many years, the importance of inbound links has never diminished in SEO. Whatever changes have taken place in search engine algorithms, the influence inbound links have on authority and reputation of a website remains the same. However, search engines, especially Google, is very much concerned about the quality of the inbound link rather than the number of links. You can no longer fool a search engine with link sharing, or other link building tactics, which used to work a few years before.