Our digital marketing team at Red Ant Solutions spent the day at the TFM&A 2014 Exhibition where we picked up a great deal of exciting ideas and insights into the future of search.
Using what we learnt from the insightful seminars and debates at the event combined with our own analysis of the marketing industry we have compiled a list for what is in store for the future of search and SEO.
The role of an SEO professional has broadened. Having an excellent technical understanding, optimising for search topics and building quality links are just the fundamentals. SEO should be converged with a range of different channels such as social and email.
Google is no longer awarding high rankings simply based on how many keywords are used throughout your web pages. Instead your rankings on Google will improve if your pages have a high organic quality score. This quality score is determined by a number of factors that your website needs to be optimised for – including reducing bounce rate, maximising visit duration and increasing site speed.
The increase in “not provided” data for what keywords were used to access your site has changed the way we measure and report SEO performance. As an agency we focus on the growth of organic traffic to the site and work to advance the number of conversions achieved. We also use Google Webmaster Tools to monitor the search queries used to find each site.
This means giving your audience what they want. If this is to instantly retrieve information – serve this up to them as quickly as possible. If they want to gain a thorough understanding or insight – provide these extra details. Write something worth writing about and create shareable, engaging posts such as video content, infographics, apps, competitions and photos. This will subsequently increase their time spent on your site improving your organic quality score, as well as increasing your conversions and business opportunities.
More and more searches are being made on these portable devices making responsive websites essential. Our agency specialises in creating responsive sites for our clients as users who access a non-responsive site on their mobiles often leave straightaway – therefore a loss of potential customers!
Understanding your audience Researching who your audience is and how they are navigating your site is as important to knowing how they got to your site.
Google’s Knowledge Graph Google is providing instant answers about people, places and ‘things’. With these answers displaying at the top of search results users are less likely to click through to websites in the search results. Make sure your website has information that Google doesn’t have, for example, provide the answers to complex queries that users will want to read into. If your website content can be found on sites such as Freebase then be aware as Google uses the information on here in its Knowledge Graph.
Local search The Venice algorithm gives preference to local results in search. National businesses can optimise accordingly by creating individual pages for the different locations they do business in. This is something we have done for our current SEO clients and have found this to be extremely effective in increasing their search presence in local search results.
By Kath Goward 04 March 2014