SEO trends in 2021
Story by Alex Augustyniak
5 min read
Let's discuss the leading SEO trends of this year:
Google SERP optimization
Google Search Results Pages (SERPs) are in for a revolution in 2021. All of this is thanks to an update called Google Passage Ranking.
For a search engine to figure out the user's search intent, it is imperative to examine the keywords. Intent comes in many different forms - for example: transactional, informational, commercial, or navigational, etc.
It’s a crucially important distinction to make for the search algorithm - for example, users searching for “car tires comparison” are looking for vastly different results than users who type in “car tires store”. The first one is looking for informational content - reviews, best-of lists, or test results. The second one, on the other hand, is focused on transactional info, and most likely wants to see different tire pricing options and online shops where they can perform the transaction. As we can see - similar phrases, but different expectations.
By updating the algorithm, Google AI can better understand the context of the information on the website, thus allowing Google to identify specific sections of text on the page that more directly respond to the query.
An increasing amount of brands are willing to go that extra mile to meet Google’s Passage Ranking needs. Are you a newcomer to the world of SEO and looking to get up to speed? Check out our blog post which covers the history of SEO in a nutshell as well as some basic terms worth knowing in this area!
Core Web Vitals
Web Vitals is a Google-led initiative, seeking to provide unification of guidance for quality signals essential to delivering a great user experience. It includes features such as page speed, compliance with security protocols, image optimization, or multiple device support. These were introduced as a ranking factor this year, thus becoming another aspect that needs to be considered when optimizing a website.
The philosophy behind this initiative is a drive to not only simply answer user queries, but also to satisfy them with its presentation, accessibility, and trustworthiness.
Since the fabled “Year of Mobile” in 2015, when the number of mobile search queries overtook the desktop searches - the relevance of the mobile market has only increased. Of all internet traffic in 2021, ~56% came from mobile devices. This trend has not been left unnoticed - it has become the primary area of concern for most new projects or optimization strategies.
In today's competitive market, a bare-bones mobile solution is simply not cutting it anymore if your business is aiming for the top of the ranking. Less than 8% of users venture past the second page of search results, therefore it is imperative to optimize the daylight out of your mobile version and keep it up-to-date and polished.
It’s all about the content
The trend of longer content is looking to continue in 2021, as most websites try to expand theirs to better fit Google’s E-A-T (Expertise-Authoritativeness-Trustworthiness) algorithm expectations.
Modifying your content to include some subtle marketing in the form of statistics, surveys, or studies which contribute to the research in that area is bound to bring about users linking to your article, increasing its popularity further yet.
While supporting content, such as graphics or animations inside your content does not directly contribute to traffic, they do increase the overall readability, which increases the content quality, which in turn increases its chance to be linked or shared. Organizing your content into “hubs” also works very well for SEO ratings and makes your content more easily navigable. It also increases the chances of a user clicking a related article, or coming back in the future with related queries.
This trend will never grow old. If your content is good enough to be quoted or has a noticeable enough online presence to be tracked by other websites - creating backlinks can be a very effective way of improving SEO rankings. This relates to the previous point - content is king.
Guest posting (sharing links to other blog articles in your website blog content) can also be an effective way of improving SEO rankings.
Counteracting decreasing CTRs
Organic click-through rates are down throughout the internet - that much is no secret to anyone inside the industry. It’s no wonder - very often your search is over within the very first record - which increasingly is a SERP or an Ad.
Interestingly, a new strategy focusing on increasing your CTRs has arisen. By creating keyword-rich URLs editors have a chance to increase their ranking placement - which is especially important in specific search query types where SERPs are not common.
2021 is a continuation of the dynamic development and improvement of Google algorithms. The successively introduced changes will certainly affect both the position of the pages in the rankings, but also the way users use the search engine, and the quality of the information they receive.
If you want to adapt your website to the constantly changing standards, please contact Direktpoint's experts. By always monitoring the market and being up-to-date, we will guide you on your way through the world of digital marketing.