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SEO Trends in 2020

SEO Trends in 2020

Reading Time: 3 minutes
SEO trends for 2020

SEO changes constantly. With every update to Google’s core algorithm comes the need to alter our approach to SEO. Fortunately, you can stay ahead of most of the changes simply by keeping in mind what might create the best UX. Google’s updates focus on providing the best possible user experience, so when it comes to SEO, the best possible strategy is to focus on users instead of on the search engines.

That being said, here are some trends to keep an eye out for and take advantage of in the new year. This year, SEO is all about visual content.

Become a Domain Authority

Google wants to focus its top results on reliable, authoritative content. In order to provide users with the best possible information, they want to feature pages that don’t just provide the right keywords but that actually offer expertise on the subject in question. While some of what Google will be using to measure a webpage’s authority is on your website (about page, contacts, external links to sources, author biographies, etc.), much will also be off-site. The more backlinks you have, the more reliable your webpage appears. However, these backlinks do need to be high-quality backlinks from other trusted sites.

Focus on Video Content

Video content has been a big deal in the SEO world for a while now. But, it keeps getting more and more important. By 2021, it’s been predicted that video content will make up 80% of all web traffic. That’s a huge amount. If you aren’t already doing video, you really need to be. Even with the already incredible amount of video content out there, there’s still demand for more.

Video Search Optimization

To optimize your videos for SEO, make sure that you include your keywords and a good description of what the video is about in its file name, the name on YouTube, the description, and tags. It’s also important to include a transcript of your video. Google crawls the transcript for text since it can’t actually watch the video.

YouTube provides automatic transcripts, but it’s not 100% correct. Once you’ve uploaded your video, watch it with the transcript active so you can see if it’s correct or not. If there are any mistakes, you’re best off uploading your own so you can be sure that the text Google is able to crawl accurately reflects your content.

The Newcomer, Visual Search

Visual search is a relative newcomer to SEO. It involves searching with an image rather than with words. Google Lens and Pinterest both offer image search features. Google Lens has been used 1 billion times already since its release. On Pinterest, more than 600 million image searches are made monthly. That looks like a lot of demand for visual searching.

Visual search is already used by up to 35% of Internet users and the technology is already very good. It’s also very popular with younger Internet users and is especially useful for online shopping, getting directions, landmark identification, language translation, and a lot more. But how do you optimize for visual search?

Visual Search Optimization

Optimizing for visual search is similar to optimizing images for your normal SEO strategy. Make sure to have your keywords included in the image’s file name and use descriptive alt text for every single image. For images that you want to be included in visual search, however, there are a few extra things to keep in mind.

First, Google wants to focus on images from websites that are both fresh and authoritative. This means that your site needs to be an expert in your field and also be regularly updated. If you haven’t changed your content in a while, that will decrease your chances of having an image included in visual search.

Secondly, the image needs to be highlighted on the page. It should be high up on the page and central to the page. The page should be about what is featured in the image rather than it merely being supplementary or to break up the text.

Need some help growing your web presence and strengthening your brand? You’ve come to the right place.

A Fresh Look at Featured Snippets in 2020

A Fresh Look at Featured Snippets in 2020

Reading Time: 3 minutes

Featured Snippets in 2020

Featured snippets are considered the Boardwalk and Park Place of a search engine results page. They’re located right at the top of the page and are delineated by a box so they’re clearly separated from the rest of the results. Featured snippets are considered position 0 in the rankings and are coveted by companies for their SEO benefits.

But Google is constantly making tweaks and upgrades to its algorithm in order to provide better results for users. The featured snippet is no exception. This year has seen a change to the featured snippet. What does this change mean for SEO and is it still worth it to try to get?

No More Duplicate Results

In the past, the webpage that occupied the featured snippet would also appear in the search results below in its earned location. Being the top result on the SERP didn’t automatically mean that that page would also be the featured snippet, but it did help. Sometimes, the featured snippet would come from lower down on the page.

However, as of 2020, the webpage in the featured snippet will appear only in the featured snippet and not in the results below. This change only applies to page 1 of the SERP. If a webpage appearing on page 2 or later of the search results is chosen for the featured snippet, it will still appear in its normal location. From this year onward, the featured snippet will count as its own position in the search results rather than simply featuring one of the ranked positions below.

Why the Change?

As with most of Google’s changes to its search algorithm or AI, this change was for the users. Having the same result appear twice, once in the featured snippet and once again on the first page of the results cluttered the SERP and could be confusing for users who didn’t realize that it was a duplicate entry. Removing the webpage in the featured snippet from the first page of the SERP does clean up the page and will guarantee that users are viewing only unique entries at once.

Is the Featured Snippet Still Worth It?

At the moment, it’s too early to tell. Many SEO experts believe that only time will tell. They will have to monitor analytics in order to determine whether a page receives more clicks as the top result or as the featured snippet. The best thing to do is to keep an eye on any pages that currently rank as the featured snippet. They may experience a drop in traffic, especially if the snippet is located in the right sidebar. Some may want to use a nosnippet tag to prevent Google from using their webpage as the featured snippet.

One change that is still coming is that any featured snippets that show up in the SERP’s right sidebar will be merging with the rest of the results. This should cause a decrease in clicks to subside as the featured snippet will be at the top of the page. That change should occur before the end of January. If you’re able to re-write some webpages that currently rank as the featured snippet, it might be a good idea to do so in order to see the difference in clicks for that page between the featured snippet and its normal ranking.

Need some help growing your web presence and strengthening your brand? You’ve come to the right place.