Search Engine Optimization (SEO) is a constantly changing field due to upgrades in search engine technology and operational changes at Google. Although Google isn’t the only search engine, the company drives most of the rules and practices that SEOs follow. Google’s primary focus for search is to provide the best possible results for user queries. In order to provide these returns, the search engine must be able to sort through all of the potential results to determine which should display at the top. Needless to say, this process is highly technical and difficult, compounded with all of the black hat tricks that are used to fool the search engine. Google has deployed an array of solutions to solve these issues and the work is ongoing. While making continuing changes to update your B2B website to comply with Google’s updates may seem aggravating, doing so improves the search engine for everyone including your prospects. Emerging trends are showing that SEO is being used in new ways that can only help your B2B content rise to the top. Here are some of these trends.
1. New Formats for Search
We have traditionally thought of search via search engines, but now search has expanded to audio through devices such as Google Home and Amazon’s Alexa. As more consumers buy and use these devices, customer personalization will continue to grow. Studies to understand how customers search and shop will help search technology become even more sophisticated. To take advantage of these changes, you need to focus on intimate portraits, or personas, of your ideal customers and seek to create content just for them.
2. Paid Ads vs. SEO
Paid ads are a channel that competes with SEO, yet should be viewed as an additional way to find new leads. These ads not only appear in search engines, but everywhere you go on the internet. They can drive qualified leads to your landing pages and marketing funnels and work in conjunction with your SEO marketing. It is also important to remember that SEO is a long-term strategy. Not all results will appear immediately.
3. HTTPS Security
HTTPS is growing in popularity due to a rising understanding of privacy risk inherent with the internet and Wi-Fi. Recent revelations as to the vulnerability of websites in the news can only exacerbate this issue. Google has already made recommendations that sites change to HTTPS to make them more secure, therefore don’t be surprised when sites with HTTPS show up at the top of the Search Engine Results Page.
4. Mobile Growth
We have continued to see the growth of mobile, with separate mobile search engine results. Sites with better user experience on mobile are given preference in search results from mobile devices. If you haven’t already made your website mobile-ready, you are losing a huge opportunity to reach your prospects. Customers search from smartphones and tablets while they are on the road for business, and you need to feature prominently in those SERPs.