The first question that comes to mind is whether the latest SEO trends and tactics can help dominate the SERPs and earn more revenue in 2022? The answer is no doubt yes.
There’s no doubt that search engine optimization tactics continue to evolve. While it’s true that there are some timeless principles of SEO, like creating stellar content and identifying assets that deserve links and mentions, many older tactics aren’t as effective in today’s landscape.
In fact, some downright outdated tactics, such as keyword stuffing, can negatively impact your rankings. As user behavior evolves and search engines like Google adapt in response, the goal for today’s SEO professional is adaptability. And understanding what went on in the last year and what SEO looks like in 2022.
Here are the top SEO trends that are taking center stage in 2022:
- Core Web Vitals optimization
2021 Google page experience update was arguably the most significant change for search in the previous several years. This algorithm update will span several user experiences signals, including the Core Web Vitals, which evaluate users’ overall experience with the web page.
Core Web Vitals look at three key metrics:
Largest Contentful Paint (LCP): the time it takes the largest content asset on the page to load. This excludes any content above the fold, which allows LCP to focus on what is most impactful: the main content of your page. Google says this should occur within 2.5 or fewer seconds of when the page first starts loading.
Cumulative Layout Shift (CLS): measures visual stability and aims to prevent unforeseen changes when users interact with the carrier. The company also says you want to keep this score under 0.1, which means no more than one or two layout shifts occur on your page.
Of all the areas to direct your SEO investments in 2022, improving Core Web Vitals signals across your pages will have the most tangible impact on your search engine performance.
What you can do to optimize your page:
The key to success here is that you don’t need to reinvent the wheel — just optimize it. Small changes can make a significant impact. For example, moving CSS “above the fold” can improve LCP scores by 10 points. Optimize images by compressing them or improve server response times by upgrading hosting or reducing the number of plugins you use.
Find a tool that makes this easy: Core Web Vitals are complex, making them difficult to monitor and track on your own. You can recalibrate the performance of your page by checking with Google Search Console, PageSpeed Insights, and Chrome User Experience Report.
An SEO tool provides an automated way for you to assess how well each page meets these new metrics. Plus, they give you specific recommendations on what aspects of the page you should change to boost your performance score.
You might also focus on usability and user experience (UX) when designing your website (if applicable). Ensure your web pages are secure with HTTPS. Check out this details article on migrating from the default HTTP to HTTPS.
- More Focus on Mobile User Experience
Jori Ford, Chief Marketing Officer at Food Boss, expects changes related to the mobile page experience. “Last March 2021, Google rolled out new tools to support mobile and page experience,” she explains.
Ford added, “With those pieces maturing, I think mobile page experience related to core web vitals as content will lead the charge.”
As SEO professionals, we tend to look at pieces, she said. “However, based on the recent tools, resources, and analytics updates, it’s apparent that the entirety of the mobile experience. From the discovery to how easily users interact, engage, and utilize, will come together just as content experience has over the last several years.”
A great way to improve your site’s mobile experience is to implement responsive web design (RWD) if you haven’t already. And improve page load speed by optimizing images and videos, minimizing redirects, and enabling browser caching and cookies.
“This will impact mobile UX and Core Web Vitals on mobile, mobile usability, mobile-first indexing, and mobile security,” she said.
- Voice Search Will Impact Search Queries
If you’re not optimizing your content and website for voice search, you could be missing out on a massive chunk of the market. Thanks to innovations like Apple’s Siri, Google Assistant, and Amazon’s Alexa, voice search technology has exploded in recent years. As technology has gotten better, it’s also gotten more popular. In fact, statistic shows around 55 percent of U.S households will own a smart speaker in 2022, from 28 percent in 2018. That share is also projected to reach about 75 percent by 2025.
But what does this mean for businesses?
Voice queries are different from traditional web searches because they rely much more on natural language. Because people tend to use long-tail keyword phrases when they do voice searches and tend to abbreviate when typing. For example, a person might voice search, “What are the latest SEO trends for 2022?” but type “SEO trends 2022.”
This can be difficult for businesses to rank for them if they don’t have an SEO strategy focusing specifically on these keywords. To optimize your content for voice search, consider your keywords. You need to identify these longer phrases and incorporate them into your content marketing strategy.
- AI will have a more significant impact on SEO
It’s fascinating to consider what life will be like in 10 years, or even half a decade. For those who have been around long enough, we remember what life was like when the Internet came into mainstream consciousness. Yet, today, it’s all but impossible to imagine our lives without it.
In many ways, artificial intelligence (AI) is where we were with the Internet back then — on the cusp of things that will change our world as we know it. And just as the Internet transformed how we interact with content online; AI will also begin to play a critical role in SEO strategy. Especially noteworthy is Google’s AI algorithm RankBrain. This will likely become one of the most important ranking factors for Google’s search engine results pages (SERPs). Since Google revealed RankBrain, many businesses have wondered how this will affect SEO. And how they can cater content strategy to an AI algorithm?
Though Google has not shared details on the inner workings of how RankBrain learns and analyzes content. Whizzes believe that user experience is one of its primary ranking factors. This means that the click-through rate and the number of time users spend on a website will be critical factors that RankBrain.
- Supplement with Multimedia
One of the hottest trends in SEO today is multimedia. It’s something that every brand should be thinking about. Whether you’re building an internal video editor team or relying on a third-party vendor to create multimedia content for you.
We’ve noticed that people are wary of clickbait headlines and carefully constructed content these days. So, when you put your brand behind a piece of long-form content, you need to supplement it with multimedia. Also, it’s now easier than ever to put together some quick graphics with a tool like Canva or Venngage.
This means more than just slapping some stock photos in there. You want to test out multimedia elements like video, screenshots, or an infographic, making a comeback as people look for more ways to interact with the content they consume. You can also get creative by adding embedded tweets, animated GIFs, or creating a printable PDF guide or resource list that your readers can download!
- Write Better Content That Fulfills Google’s EAT Principle
Today, the need for quality information on the web has never been greater. Users expect to find accurate data and trustworthy sources to navigate their daily lives, solve professional challenges, or make important decisions about their health. As a result, Google has reiterated the importance of content quality in determining search rankings. But just what does ‘quality’ mean to Google?
One way to look at this is through the EAT principle. E-A-T stands for Expertise, Authoritativeness, and Trustworthiness. The concept was first introduced in 2014 but has taken on new significance after the infamous Medic Update in August 2018, when Google confirmed that this is something they use to evaluate websites.
These factors help determine if a page has valuable quality content. The concept of EAT is especially relevant in business niches under the YMYL. A quality rating for content that stands for “Your Money or Your Life” label includes industries like healthcare, finance, and law.
Google uses this acronym to classify pages that can potentially impact a person’s future happiness, health, financial stability, or safety. “YMYL websites” are held to the highest possible ‘EAT’ standards due to the subject matter and its meaning for users if that information is misrepresented.
How do we craft SEO content?
Well, here are a few tips for answering that question:
There are several ways you can ensure quality content. Start by creating buyer personas, which allow you to understand what kind of content will be most valuable to your audience. Next, understand the searcher’s intent which helps you map out the consumer journey to create the right content at each stage of their buying journey. Third, use this information from the buyer personas and search intent research to create content that fits the format that your users prefer. For example, video is probably preferable if you’re catering to teens. If you’re catering to an older audience, a video may be less appealing.
Finally, keep EAT in mind as you create your content:
Do you have the expertise to write about the topic? If not, can you find someone who does? Authority and trustworthiness are essential for SEO success in 2022. Can consumers trust what you say? This is where fact-checking and third-party data come in handy. Are there other experts who can confirm and build on your expertise? This is where co-authoring comes in handy and backs claims with statistics and facts. Link to reputable sites, such as “.gov” and “.edu” URLs. Having authoritative sites link back to you is another way to prove that you fulfill the EAT criteria.
- A Shift to Long-Form Content
To ensure that you captivate and engage readers who visit your website, you will need to shift to a long-form content strategy. Long-form content of 2,000 words or more has been shown to get more traffic and shares than short-form content. Shifting your focus to creating quality long-form content can significantly improve your search rankings. However, for long-form content to be successful, it must be able to keep readers engaged.
To keep readers engaged, you must break up your content into multiple sub-sections using H2 and H3 subheadings, as this will make it more scannable. The goal is to make your content easy for readers to browse. Especially on mobile devices, big chunks of text can intimidate many readers and overwhelm a small screen. You should also make sure that your content is easy to share to improve SEO. Include obvious sharing links at the beginning and end of your content so that readers can share it with a click of a button.
- Better Rich Snippets
The Internet is a vast and diverse place. Search engines use many techniques to enable users to find relevant content, including crawling through links, identifying keywords, and tracking user behavior. But all that information is only useful if the search engine knows what it means.
Google uses Schema markup as a microdata vocabulary to better understand and extract content from your pages. Schema enables Google to display more visually appealing results, called rich snippets. These rich snippets are designed to give users a better sense of what they’re likely to find when they click on the link, which increases the likelihood that they’ll click on it in the first place.
But you can tell Google how your site is organized by leveraging structured data markup. What types of content your site contains, such as video schema and education sites. This can also help Google understand which sections of your site are most essential and display those sections in search results.
Businesses that leverage schema markup is already far ahead of their competitors, as many digital companies still don’t utilize it. Take a look at Google’s complete list of rich results to see which are relevant to the content on your website. Also, make it a goal to add the appropriate schema markup in 2022.
The best SEO trends strategies for 2022
Overall, site owners and digital marketers should understand the key “SEO terms” and how google works this year. But do pay attention to tools and technology that might help your team save time and deliver more significant outcomes.
With so many SEO trends, it really becomes hard to keep up. But search engine optimization should be your top priority for ranking your website high. In fact, when compared with social media marketing, email marketing, and mobile optimization, SEO is a no-brainer. So, what are you waiting for? Get started with the best SEO trend(s) this year!