SEO: Understanding Search Trends

Any sound marketing plan today must address how search engine optimization (SEO) will be handled and what strategies will be used.  To effectively use SEO to get traffic to your website, you need an understanding of how the search algorithms work and how they are used.

Below we provide some insight on what performs well in search based on 2018 trends.

The Importance of SEO

Did you know that search engines drive 93% of all website traffic?  That’s an unbelievable number! It’s quality traffic, too. Ninety-four percent of all organic traffic from non-ad sources comes from search engines like Google!

These stats should serve to underscore the importance of search optimizing your website for organic SEO.  Doing so allows Google and other search engines to see your site and understand what it is about.

Organic SEO is more desirable, too. According to NewMediaCampaigns.com, it performs about 5.6 times better than paid ads.

But simply being found is not enough. Your site needs to appear on the first Search Engine Results Page (SERP).  SearchEngineJournal.com reports that 91.5% of all internet traffic comes from sites listed on the first Google SERP. That means only a very small percentage of searchers look past the first page. So if you want traffic from search, your site needs to appear on the first page.

Here’s the Bottom line: If your website is not search optimized and cannot be found, or just doesn’t rank well, you’re missing out on all that quality search traffic.

Search Trends

Understanding how searchers use Google and other such services helps marketers understand what SEO strategies they should use.  For example, according to NetMarketShare.com 96% of all mobile search traffic comes from Google. Yahoo is responsible for 2% and Bing 1%. 

If you were concerned about which search engine you should focus your mobile SEO efforts on, now you have an answer.

Marketers also have a big opportunity to win customers when they search. That’s because ninety percent have not decided what brand to purchase when they perform the search. So if your website appears in the SERRPs with relevant content, you have a chance to win that sale.

Another trend involves the length of search terms. When people enter a phrase into a search engine, about 50% are four or more words. This is important to know when selecting your keyword phrases.

Finally, having a secure website is important to Google and a large majority of searchers.  About half of the websites on the first SERP are HTTPS.  In addition, 84% of searchers will leave a site if it is not secure.

Content

The Google search algorithm rewards websites that have updated content with better search rankings. So creating content to rank better is an essential practice.  In fact, Google indexes websites with updated content 434% more than those without.

When creating content for SEO, a majority of marketers agree that relevancy is the most important factor. In fact, if traffic is your goal, you should choose your keywords first and then create content around them.

Video

Video content is another form of media that performs well in search. It gets 50 times more organic traffic, which is clicks from searchers, than text.

Simply having a video thumbnail appear in the SERPs can double search traffic.

Voice

Virtual assistants or voice activated devices continues to drive voice search. Wix.com reports that 40% of device users report that these devices are essential to their lives.  By 2020, it is expected to take up 50% of all searches on the internet.

Search optimizing your website for voice search is different that traditional SEO. As voice search grows, brands will need to optimize for it.

The Wrap

When discussing SEO, it’s a bit like connecting the dots for those who are not familiar with it.  But it’s safe to say that without search optimizing your site, it will not be found, nor will it appear, on the Google SERPs.  Without appearing in the search results, especially the first page, you won’t benefit from the high quality organic traffic or have the ability to win a sale.

Simply put, SEO is a must for all businesses today.

If you want to learn more about search optimizing your website, call me today at 513-237-5530.

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Bob Turner is a Digital Marketing Consultant with RevLocal in Cincinnati, Ohio.

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