Today's SEO is all about synergy and creating engaging experiences. Merging old and new. Creating a quicker, more efficient user search experience and providing meaningful moments across customer journey touchpoints and devices.
What’s Changing in SEO
Today’s SEO is all about synergy and creating engaging experiences across search, social and website touchpoints. Merging old and new. Creating a quicker, more efficient user search experience and providing meaningful micro-moments micro-moments across all devices.
Classic SEO best practices are still very important; competitive analysis, keyword research, link building, tracking etc. These will all continue to play an important role in your search engine ranking. However, user experience, Search Engine Results Page (SERP) details, performance design, micro-moments and social sharing are all playing a bigger role in how we approach On-Page SEO and the customer journey in the modern mobile era.
Improve User Search Experience
We’ve reached a point where classic design principles (user experience) are influencing SEO. It’s not just about ranking, clicks and views anymore. We must continue to bridge the gap between the searcher intent and the page content purpose. Entering a search query, seeing search results and landing on a page should feel seamless. We want the search results to be intuitive and relevant, and the landing page to be fast, engaging and high converting.
Focus your attention on optimizing on-site engagement KPIs like bounce rates, avg time on site, pages per visit and conversion rates.
Enhance SERP Details
The search results page provides a list of options that contain key information such as; a headline, meta description, url and even profile pictures, which are known to increase click through rates. Think of all this information as an advertisement. Stuffing keywords won’t do the trick. As in traditional marketing, users are attracted to compelling content. People are even beginning to associate brands with domain names. Short, catchy domain names are becoming a part of brand name strategies. There are lots of new great markup available that can help improve the display of search results, making it easier for people to find the right web pages.
Optimize Site Performance
Now that we have potential customers on our site, how do we keep them there? Yes, relevant compelling content will work, but there’s more. We need to ensure that our pages load fast and are responsive. There are many factors in determining page load speed, however the two most important factors are; the use of clean code and optimized imagery. Responsive web design allows your site to adjust to the size of the device that is being used. This is crucial, as most people tend to get frustrated at mobile unfriendly sites and will likely look elsewhere if your site does not adjust properly. Both page load speed and responsive web design affect your critical engagement rates, your search engine ranking and and ultimately your search and awareness moments.
A/B test your content to contiously enhance your users experience.
Incorporate some SVG images along with your jpg, png and gifs to lower image file sizes and to speed up page load speed.
Being ‘socially active’ goes without saying these days. However, pages that are socially active and often shared, are quietly becoming relevant to search engine ranking. An example of this is Google linking content to Google+ profiles using the rel=”author” attribute. According to their Webmaster Tools page they are; ‘…piloting the display of author information in search results to help users discover great content’. Ensure your pages are socially sharable and that your images/graphics fit the proportions of the social network that you are targeting.
Rank high. Perform great. Convert.
As you can see, properly combining the classic with the modern tactics of on-page SEO is what its all about. It’s not just about one thing, it’s about many things. It’s about keeping up with the ever changing algorithms (Penguin) and being able to adapt to new technologies. It’s about synergy and a great user experience.