It’s here! “Happy New Year” will bring a whole new assortment of algorithms and technology along with it. In the midst of the approaching technological challenges of 2019, and as you and your business look forward to a future of new goals and achievements, your online presence must be equipped to support your growth initiatives. While every business will have distinctive targets for 2019, your website requires a few basics in order to succeed.
We aren’t just talking about website design and functionality. While these are important and certainly not to be glossed over, this blog is focused on the tactics that will bring users to your website: your SEO strategy. We’ve compiled a few key SEO elements that will prove to be vital to the success of your website in 2019, and we can’t wait to share them with you!
Go Beyond Google:
We’ve discussed previously how to optimize your website for voice search, but in 2019 this will no longer be merely an option but rather, a necessity. Currently, over 47.3 million American adults have access to a smart speaker and by 2020 is it estimated that 75% of homes will have a home assistant in their houses. This growth chart coupled with the influx of home assistants that we will have received as holiday gifts, demands an optimization of your website for more than the top of the SERP pages.
What’s the best way to make sure your website is optimized for voice search? It’s all about using long-tail keywords and formatting your content as though you are answering the question yourself when someone is asking their voice search assistant. A good place to start is to ask these questions out loud as if you were doing the asking and see what phrases or keywords are popping up in your question. From there, you can begin to formulate a predicted answer, and then optimize your page to fit these keywords.
Quality over Quantity:
Google’s 2018 algorithm updates revealed that it is no longer sufficient to check the boxes of keywords, internal linking, or headers. Google is now crawling your website content for the quality of content on the site to ensure that it will not only be helpful for your site visitors, but it will be entertaining as well. So what does it mean in practice to create a more entertaining website for your visitors? The key to entertaining content is to expand your thinking beyond words on the page. Of course, words play a vital role, but a good rule of thumb is to remember that if you can show it, do it. Implementing the use of videos, images, or even GIFs will not only attract more people to your site but will retain these visitors for a longer site visit as well as make it more likely for them to return again.
All of these outcomes, plus your foundational SEO strategies that you’ve already put into place will not only help in your ranking but will get your site a praiseworthy reputation.
Location, Location, Location:
Everyone is on the go it seems, and 2019 promises to be even more energetic. Multi-tasking is at an all-time high while tablets and smartphones have taken the place of a desktop or laptop for many quick searches. In fact, studies show that 4 in 5 people conduct local searches on search engines with one source reporting that 88% of these are happening on a smartphone and another source relates that 84% occur on a tablet. Searching is one thing; however, when a user follows through with action, it is another thing altogether. Yet, most searchers are putting money where their mouths are with 50% of them visiting the store only a day after they had searched it online. What makes a user take the plunge and visit your store location? There are many contributing factors. These are the top 5 steps that will encourage visits:
- Include user reviews that compliment your brand and product.
- List your store in local business directories.
- Set up and optimize your Google My Business search page.
- Attain more local inbound links by participation in local events and building relationships with local businesses.
- Increase industry related links by building your relationship with some of the top industry leaders.
Security is Key:
While it may seem like this point is off topic, security is actually an important foundation for a well-rounded user experience. Having a secure site is crucial to building trust in the user. In fact, did you know that 82% of people said they will leave a website if it is not secure? Despite that declaration, only 31% of websites are truly secure? If you do the math, that means a lot of great websites are missing out on cautious, returning visitors and loyal customers. If you aren’t sure if your site is secure, your digital agency should be able to let you know. Along with that, you can start working for increased website security, first of call by converting your website link to https protocol. Then for a secure section, get the SSL certificates: root, intermediate server.
We are convinced that 2019 is your year to shine! You have already put in the hard work of dreaming, creating, building, and refining. Now, let us help you take it to the next level by making sure you are ready to share your products and services with the world. Our boutique digital agency specializes in helping small businesses succeed online and you are no exception. Contact us today so we can help you achieve your goals in 2019!