It’s that predictively predictive time of year, and we’re making our own search trend calls for 2017 with predictable boldness. In our 2016 prediction blog post, we anticipated growth of location-based search, video content, mobile optimization, and aggregated content. It turns out, we were right. (Don’t worry: we’re patting our own backs.)
What’s the scoop for 2017, and how can you prepare your site for success in the New Year — and beyond? Rebel’s got you covered.
Notable SERP Changes
In 2016, Google began experimenting with some changes in their SERPs, increasing allowances for some websites’ meta descriptions and titles. While Google hasn’t made any announcements regarding whether these changes are here to stay or will spread to other sites, we speculate they will.
If your site’s been lucky enough to receive this extra SERP real estate, take advantage of it by expanding your descriptions and using your main keyword at the beginning of both your title and meta description. Maximizing description length will help ensure your site doesn’t end up buried beneath a mountain of search results.
Continued Focus on Mobile
It’s no secret that more people are using mobile devices to access the Web than ever before, and this trend shows no signs of letting up anytime soon (or anytime ever, for that matter). We safely anticipate, then, that 2017 will see a continued focus on mobile search optimization, along with an increased need for quick page-load times.
Now more than ever, if a user clicks your website link in the search results or an ad, your mobile site needs to load in under a second in order to increase conversions. Google has been testing and growing features like the AMP project to help improve page load times. If you’re not already using AMP, that might be a good first New Year’s resolution to make.
Increased Schema Importance
Schema markup plays a critical role in keeping your website and its content easily detectable and searchable, increasing your chances of showing up in SERPs. We predict the use of schema markup in 2017 will be even more vital, considering Google has nearly doubled its use of Quick Answers since 2014. New to schema markup? There are plenty of useful tips and tricks for beginners to help with your SEO.
Popularity of Voice Search
Speaking of schema markup, the increased popularity of voice search will make artificial intelligence even more relevant in Web searches in 2017 than before. With more and more people using digital assistants (such Siri and Cortana), we also expect search phrases to become longer and more complex. As such, marketing and optimizing for long-tail keywords will become increasingly important for websites that want to rank higher in search results.
2017 will be another interesting year in the world of search marketing. Even though we’re still a few weeks out from the New Year, now is as good a time as any to revisit your site’s marketing strategy so you can ensure a successful 2017 — and beyond! Contact the experts at Rebel Interactive Group today for more assistance with your search marketing strategy.