Once again this year a lot has happened in the SEO and content marketing world. The online marketing agency Pixxoma the most important developments and introduces 10 SEO and content marketing trends for the year 2019.
SEO-Trends 2019: That will occupy the industry next year
1. Mobile First
The Mobile First Index, rolled out this year, will continue to play a big role next year, as the transition is likely to continue for some time. As a website owner, however, you should make sure as soon as possible that you can offer your users a mobile-optimized site.
From a SEO perspective, it’s not just the fact that Google rates sites based on their mobile version. Much more important are the users. More and more people are surfing on their mobile devices. With a mobile-optimized website you will therefore meet the needs of your users at best.
Our tip: Create your website in a responsive web design. The mobile optimization test lets you see if your site’s mobile presence is accurate and usable. Also, check your markup structure: Use at least one relevant markup per page and make sure the markup is the same for both the desktop version and the mobile variant.
2. Website Speed
With the “Speed Update” in July 2018, the load times of a website have become a ranking factor for the mobile search . For slow websites, even small load time improvements can have a positive impact on the ranking. This gives the performance an ever higher priority.
Although Google made it clear that this factor is just one of many influencing the ranking. Nevertheless, site operators are advised to optimize the load time of their websites. Because users want to get answers to their searches as quickly as possible, they often jump off slow-loading sites and return to the search results page. This sends a negative user signal to the search engine regarding the website. Meanwhile Google even ships Warnings to slow websites .
Our tip: To review website performance, we recommend Google’s newly redesigned PageSpeed Insights tool.
3. User signals
In 2018, user signals were a big topic. Next year, they will continue to employ the online marketing industry. User signals such. Dwell time, bounce rate, CTR and the back-to-SERP rate have an impact on the ranking. The CTR (Click Through Rate) indicates how often users actually click through from the search results page to a website.
The back-to-SERP rate, on the other hand, indicates how often users return from a webpage to the search results page because they may not have received a satisfactory response on the website.
This year the importance of user signals is increasing for the following reasons :
- User signals provide a lot of data about the behavior and the intention of the users
- Search engines increasingly rely on machine learning, ie Artificial Intelligence, to optimize their products
- Artificial intelligence is particularly good at recognizing patterns from large data sets and thus drawing conclusions about the users’ intentions. These can in turn be used for the optimization of the rankings
The measures to improve the user signals are recommended for each website. Regardless of whether they directly influence rankings on search results pages or not.
Our tip: Check how accurately your tracking tools measure user traffic from your website. If these settings do not produce meaningful data, you’d better set up your own events to track your users’ behavior (here’s an example of bounce tracking optimization ).
4. Voice Search
The great breakthrough in voice search is still waiting, but reports show the increasing sales of virtual speech assistants such as Alexa, Google Assistant and Co. In Germany have according to representative survey of Next Media Hamburg in May only 14 percent of a virtual voice assistant.
Forecasts assume, however, that the number of users worldwide will increase by almost 35 percent next year . Compared to written search queries, the spoken ones are usually longer and more complex. Often they are even formulated as a whole question. In addition, usually only one result is read from the hits of the search results page.
In addition, Google is currently testing so-called selected news publishers Speakable markup . This structured record identifies passages in articles that can be easily read by language assistants. If the test is successful, each website may be given the opportunity to use this markup to provide text assistants with readable text passages.
Our tip: In order to be prepared for the future in digital marketing, you should therefore optimize your website in terms of voice search . Find out which questions your audience is asking and answer them briefly and succinctly on your website. For example, in the form of FAQ pages. Use questions such as AnswerThePublic or Ubersuggest to research questions . Alternatively, you can ask your customer support to track the questions your customers ask.
5. OnSERP SEO
Ranking one on Google’s search results page no longer means being shown there first. Instead, Google plays more and more selected content on the so-called position 0 and plans to do so in the future even more. This content includes so-called Featured Snippets , Direct Answer boxes and carousels for pictures and videos.
So the user can often find the answer to his question directly on the Google search results page. Without having to go to the actual website that provides the information. This is good for the users but potentially bad for you as a website owner.
Our tip: You can counteract this development in two ways. Try tweaking the content on your website to show it at position 0 by Google. In many cases this will increase your traffic or at least attract attention for your brand. For this, probably next year, the structured awards of FAQs and instructions are important. Second, you should put a lot of emphasis on establishing your brand in the minds of your users. This will make you more independent of Google as a traffic source.
6. Rich Content
On the topic of OnSERP SEO Google has also announced that visual content such as videos and images (so-called rich content) should be more important in the search.
For example, in the future, videos can also increasingly be played as Featured Snippets. In addition, Google has repeatedly tested this year to upgrade Snippets with small thumbnails. Search engines are getting better at recognizing images and videos.
The breakthrough of visual search, where images can be uploaded as an alternative to search terms, and search engine actually searches for similar images based on the characteristics of the original, is also approaching soon. For example, Google Lens already shows the potential of this type of search.
Our tip: Say good bye to Stock Photos and create your own, meaningful images and videos for your websites. At the moment the file name, the alt tag and the caption should definitely be optimized for relevant keywords if this describes the content of the image well.
Content Marketing Trends 2019
Also in Content Marketing you should definitely keep an eye on a few topics in the new year. This includes:
How do you let your customers participate in big events, live, location-independent and in color? Of course via livestreams. Streaming conference talks or announcing new products via stream is becoming increasingly popular.
However, the enormous potential for companies to come into direct contact with their target group is not yet fully exploited. In addition to virtual participation in major events, live streaming can also be used to provide insights into the daily lives of companies or special employees.
Our tip: If you are looking for influencers for your next advertising campaign or looking for a new distribution channel for short ads, then take a look at the Twitch streaming platform. Or try a livestream yourself .
2. Stories First
Customers want sympathetic companies to touch. Let customers use your stories to look into your business and participate in activities. Because stories are no longer on the rise . Stories now outnumber the feeds of their respective platform.
Snapchat got the story-ruble going, Instagram was very successful and Facebook, WhatsApp and other platforms use the popular feature. Facebook now wants to bring the stories into the groups of its platform so that even non-followers with a specific interest can be addressed directly.
Our tip: The most popular stories are those that are close to life. You do not have to be professionally raised because the onlooker wants to see what it really is. Show your customers interesting, funny or new things about your company.
Every second person, according to a study, finds influencers untrustworthy . Influencers, like marketers and sales agents, try to sell products. The result of the study shows above all: Consumers are becoming increasingly critical.
Exaggerated promises can even be perceived as fraudulent. In addition, the consumer will find numerous information and reviews on the Internet, even on products with defects. That is why many companies are now pursuing the strategy of acting as transparently as possible.
If a product obviously has a defect, it will not hurt if you try to cover it up. Better acknowledge your weaknesses and address negative feedback directly. In the long term, transparent communication also binds the customer to the brand.
Our tip: Communicate with your customers transparently and be open-minded with negative criticism. Also govern the feedback promptly, so that no shitstorm arises.
In order to be successful in digital marketing in 2019, SEOs and content marketers should not be put off by well-known statements that have also played a role in digital marketing in recent years: “SEO is dead!”, The competition is too high, Google even mixes in position 0 as a competitor on the SERPs and the old tactics have minimal effects.
As the challenges for online marketers increase and complexity increases, the reward will be even greater in the event of success.
Individual SEO and content measures may be dying out. Optimizing websites for users and search engines will remain a relevant discipline in the New Year as well.
The type of optimization is constantly changing. Have potential strategies such as voice search, visual search, Include OnSERP SEO or Livestreaming in Marketing Planning.
To find the best tactics for successful optimization in these areas, you need to test what works and stay up to date. Knowledge is a hard currency, especially in the SEO and online marketing industry.
For this reason, further education programs for employees and teams are essential. Fact is, companies will benefit from this investment in the future.