2017 was a big year for SEO with the introduction of AI and more emphasis on conversational SEO. This coming year will be no different and we can expect many changes that will once again have us going back to how drawing boards and adjusting our strategies to fit new realities.
Here are some of the trends that will change how we do SEO in 2018.
The Advent of Voice Search
While voice recognition has been around since 2002, 2018 should be a breakout year for the technology. Google recently modified its voice search to include searches in five new languages.
How will it affect SEO do you ask? Well, with its personal assistance function and entertainment, the increasing amount of search being conducted by voice is set to change local search results, which includes online shopping as well.
For this reason, users will have to make sure that their mobile version of their sites does not block some valuable resource such as images, CSS files, and videos since many of the voice searches are conducted on mobile devices.
For the same reason, web owners should refrain from using bulky elements such as flash to maximize loading speed. They will also have to modify their search queries and on-page SEO for voice queries instead of regular queries, which can be very different.
Companies like Snap SEO have already started embracing the trend and Snap’s SEO services include technical markup, which can be optimized for search queries as well.
More Focus on User Experience
User experience, or UX for short, has started to make noise in 2017, but 2018 should be the year it goes mainstream.
We can expect Google’s algorithms to continue its march towards optimal UX and we can expect developers to follow suit. Third party programs aimed at testing UX will become the norm and developers will spend much more time doing A/B testing and tweaking their sites to reach new standards.
The rise of mobile search and voice search will also have an effect on UX in 2018. Much more emphasis will be put on cross-device UX, so we can expect old-time mobile pages to be completely obsolete in 2018. The increasing importance of UX will make Accelerated Mobile Pages the new standard from now on.
If you’re conducting a lot of searches, you may have noticed something different with Google’s first page.
Snippets now appear at the top of the page, offering a condensed and summarized version of content being searched for. This will also affect SEO in 2018 and how developers approach on-page SEO.
On-page SEO will now be made with snippets in mind, which will alter the way pages are designed from now on.
Whether it’s featured snippets, user experience or voice searches, 2018 is set to change how we do SEO from now on.
This is why it’s essential to stay on top of the trends and re-evaluate your SEO strategy with experts that are abreast of these new changes.