A question that we often get when the end of the year is around the corner, is what can we expect next year? Being an SEO company, it is important for us to know these trends. Not only to make sure our online presence can evolve but those of our clients as well. Search engine’s algorithms are always adapting and changing to ensure they give the best results to their queries. They also take into account how the world around us is changing as well. Your search engine optimization needs to change with the algorithms to ensure your rankings don’t suffer which can have a negative on your business. Find out what changes to SEO you can expect in 2021.
SEO Changes and Trends in 2020
To first know how SEO might change in 2021, it would be helpful to know what changed in 2020. Starting with the major algorithm changes.
- May 4th – Nothing to do with star wars, “may the 4th be with you,” this board core update which is most related to content relevance. Rankings can jump around quite a bit during these types of updates.
- January 22nd – The “featured snippet deduplication” affected 100% of search engine results worldwide. This ensured that featured snippets wouldn’t appear more than once on page 1 of the search results. This can make the first page more competitive as snippets can take up quite a bit of real estate.
These algorithm changes didn’t affect those who were doing SEO the correct way all that much. There were however some trends that affected some in 2020 that wasn’t ahead of the game.
- Voice Search – With Siri and Alexa, we are constantly searching in question form. This means you should make sure you have some long-tailed keywords on your most important pages as they could get the most traffic.
- Content-Length – The constant struggle between quantity versus quality. However, research has shown us that the average length of 1st-page results was 2,000 words.
- Mobile Search – Google moved to mobile-first indexing back in 2019 and that update won’t be changing anytime soon. If you’re not mobile-friendly your rankings will be missing opportunities.
2020 Events That Could Affect us in 2021
Unless you have been living under a rock, the events of 2020 have changed the digital marketing landscape. Not so much on how it works but it’s overall demand. To put it in as simple of terms as possible, a digital presence has never been more important. This means, the competition will be more fierce and for those who want to keep putting off SEO, they will be too far behind to feel like they can make a difference.
2021 SEO and Beyond
Now that you know how 2020 has changed SEO, what changes to SEO can you expect in 2021? Could it be more of the same as 2020 or will it change to adapt to 2021? The answer to both of these questions is yes.
- Voice search will continue to be important. Apple, Amazon, and Google itself are coming out with new and exciting technology to complement what they already have, making voice search terms important.
- Create content that Google wants. Long-form content that can follow the E.A.T. (Expertise, Authoritativeness, Trustworthiness) principle will dominate the SERPS. Content should continue to be important to any SEO strategy.
- Video and images will start playing a bigger role in SEO. With over a billion users on youtube, video is set to be the largest consumption of content. Google already tells us to mark our images accordingly, what else do you need to know?
- Local search will play a larger role in SEO strategies. Amazon and others have made it very convenient to buy online but people inherently prefer small businesses to large ones. When restrictions are lifted we are guaranteed to see a rush to help out the mom and pops down the street.
SEO is relatively simple in overall terms. As you can see by this list, there are so many changes happening that it’s important to make sure your strategy is crossing all the T’s and dotting the I’s. If you have the time, stay educated on changes and put in the time for all the strategies to ensure opportunities are not being missed. If you don’t have the time or motivation, make sure you hire a good SEO company that can do all of it for you.