3 trends you need to pay attention to for better rankings in 2017

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Image courtesy of SparkCBC at Flickr.com

The search engine optimization industry practically changes every year. These changes mean that there will be some new things popping up and some that weren’t that relevant in 2016 but will have a breakout year in 2017. Before getting to the trends, it’s important to answer a question that pops up year after year: “Do I have to overhaul my search engine optimization strategy?” The short answer would be no. An overhaul implies practically taking everything apart and starting over. There are still some things that will remain constant and just as important in 2017 than they were in the previous years. To note:

* Content will still matter a lot in terms of satisfying user needs and creating reputation.
* Keyword analysis will still be a must.
* Meta descriptions and XML sitemaps will continue to be important for crawlers to index your site.

Additionally, the basic SEO principles are going to be just as relevant in 2017, no need to change your whole strategy. On to the trends. Here are the trends that will mark 2017 according to ReputationDefender.

If you’ve ever used Google Voice Search, you probably found yourself amazed at how effective it can be. In the past, you would have to speak slowly and extremely clearly for Google to understand. Those days are long gone. Google has improved Voice Search to the point that there is now only an 8 percent chance the search engine giant will bring back the wrong results. Microsoft announced in September that they lowered speech recognition errors to 6.3 percent. Search engines are getting a whole lot better at understanding human speech and voice searches are being integrated to more apps every day. Typing takes too long sometimes and we live in a fast paced world where we want everything possible. Voice searching is faster and is turning out to be quite efficient. Look for SEO campaigns to focus a lot more efforts on voiced keywords.

One of the biggest trends of 2016 was the importance that Google was placing on mobile friendliness. Sites that didn’t pass Google’s mobile friendly test were sure to be pushed back in the rankings. Google has stepped it up a couple of notches and announced mobile-first indexing for websites. What this means, basically, is that Google (and other search engines will eventually follow) will send its crawlers to the mobile version of a website and get the information it needs to rank and index a site appropriately. Barry Schwartz of Search Engine Roundtable wrote an excellent piece detailing what mobile indexing entails and what it could mean to the industry. Google is giving fair warning, so those who haven’t boosted their mobile friendliness across their sites better start keeping up or be prepared to fall in the rankings. 2017 could be the year that mobile friendliness becomes the standard. Companies would be wise to look into Google’s Accelerated Mobile Pages initiative as well to see how to make faster loading pages for mobile devices.

Another way search engines will start indexing their sites is by sending crawlers to detect sites that use Schema markup. Thanks to the collaborative efforts of Google, Microsoft, Yahoo, and Yandex, website developers can now use structured data to allow websites to understand sites a whole lot easier and efficiently. What this also does, is throw back more detailed results so that users can get exactly the information they need from you. Your users will get better and more detailed rich snippets from here on out across all web browsers. Users are not the only ones who benefit from schema markup and structured data. Developers can now use Schema.org to tailor markup according to the kind of content that is being created. Schema markup is especially helpful if you are creating information for such things as restaurants, local businesses, TV shows, books, movies, events, and products. Look for search engines to search for Schema.org markup from here on out with more intent than in 2016.

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Image courtesy of Stokpic at Pexels.com

The upcoming year could mark a turning point in search engine optimization. There is going to be a notable focus on mobility. Those who do not adapt their websites to be mobile friendly without mattering the device will definitely see rankings affected. Voice search on the other hand, will start increasing its importance in 2017 as more websites take to integrating the technology to make life easier for their users. Finally, schema markup and structured data should become more standard practice than ever before given that search engines want to showcase those websites that give users the most accurate information they are searching for.

2017 promises to be quite an interesting year in the SEO world. ReputationDefender is sure to help its readers and followers stay up to date with what’s going on in the industry.

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