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In a fast-paced, dynamic field such as SEO, it is crucial to stay well-informed. Even seasoned SEO experts understand the need to keep on learning lest they become obsolete. Emerging trends. Algorithmic changes. Technological advancements. These are some of the few things every SEO professional should be watching out for. But if you haven’t been keeping an eye on these for whatever reason, don’t worry. We’ve got your covered.

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Is SEO dead? A fresh take on the age-old question from the search industry

The march of time is inevitable. And every year some new technology puts the nail in the coffin of something older.

Whether the horse and cart is replaced by the automobile or the slide is replaced by the calculator, everything eventually becomes obsolete.

And if you listen to the rumors, this time it’s search engine optimization. Rest In Peace, SEO: 1997-2022.

There is just one small problem.

SEO is still alive and kicking. It is as relevant today as ever. If anything, it may even be more important.

Today, 53% of all website traffic comes from organic search.

In fact, the first Google search result averages 26.9% of clicks on mobile and 32% on desktop.

And what helps Google determine which results belong at the top of the search engine results page (SERP)? SEO, of course.

Need more proof? We have more statistics for this.

Thanks to constant updates to Google’s search algorithm, the entire field of SEO is evolving rapidly.

Completely disregarding the many small changes that the search engine algorithm has undergone, we’ve seen several major updates over the past decade. Some of the more important ones are:

Each of these updates has changed the way Google operates, and each has required SEO professionals to rethink their approach and adjust their strategy to deliver the desired results. But the need for their services remained.

Now that it has been established that SEO is not dead, the question arises: where did all these death rumors come from in the first place?

Most of it is based on unfounded assumptions and wild speculation. The truth is that SEO is in a state of transition, which can be scary.

And this transition is driven by three things:

The Rise Of Machine Learning

The Rise Of Machine Learning

You have probably already realized the impact of artificial intelligence on the world.

This exciting new technology has started popping up everywhere, from voice assistants to predictive healthcare to self-driving cars.

And it’s been a hot topic in SEO for a while now.

Unfortunately, most of what’s out there is incomplete information gleaned from reading patents, analyzing search engine behavior, and making wild guesses.

And part of the reason it’s so hard to understand what’s going on in AI as it relates to search engines is that it’s constantly evolving.

However, we will examine two recognizable trends: machine learning and natural language.

Machine learning is exactly what it sounds like: machines that learn.

For a more sophisticated definition, it can be described as “a data analysis method that automates the building of an analytical model…a branch of artificial intelligence based on the idea that systems can learn from data, recognize patterns, and make decisions with minimal human intervention.”

For SEO purposes, this means collecting and analyzing information about content, user behavior, citations and patterns, and then using that information to create new ranking factors that are more likely to accurately answer user queries.

You’ll want to read this article for a more in-depth explanation of how this will work.

One of the most important factors that machine learning uses to determine how to rank websites is our second trend – natural language.

From their earliest days, computers used unique languages. And because it was very different from a language that people don’t use, there was always a disconnect between user intent and what search engines offered.

However, as technology has advanced more and more, Google has made great strides in this area.

Most important to SEO professionals is RankBrain, Google’s machine learning system built on a rewrite of Google’s core algorithm we mentioned earlier, Hummingbird.

Almost a decade ago, Google had the foresight to realize that mobile devices were the wave of the future. Anticipating what this would mean for search, Hummingbird focused on understanding conversational speech.

RankBrain builds on this, moving Google away from a search engine that follows links between concepts to the concepts they represent.

The search engine has moved away from matching keywords in a query to more accurately identifying user intent and providing results that more closely match the search.

This meant figuring out which words were relevant to the search and ignoring those that weren’t.

It also developed an understanding of synonyms, so that if a web page matches a query, it can appear in the results even if it does not include the searched keyword.

The biggest impact of RankBrain and machine learning has been on long-tail keywords.

In the past, websites often inserted specific but rarely searchable keywords into their content. This allowed them to appear in queries for those topics.

RankBrain changed the way Google treated them, which meant that focusing primarily on long-tail keywords was no longer a good strategy. It also helped remove content from spammers who were looking to rank for those terms.

Honey, I Shrunk The Organic Search Space

Honey, I Shrunk The Organic Search Space

Search engines are big business, no one can deny that.

And since 2016, Google has been slowly cracking down on organic search results in favor of paid advertising. At that time, sponsored ads were removed from the sidebar and placed at the top of the SERPs.

As a result, organic results were pushed further down the page, or “below the fold,” to borrow an anachronistic idiom.

From Google’s business perspective, this makes sense. The Internet has become a large part of the global economy, which means that more and more companies are willing to pay to place ads.

Because of this apparent prioritization, organic SEO experts are forced to develop innovative new strategies to not only appear on the first page, but also compete with paid ads.

Changes to local search also affected SERPs. In its never-ending quest to provide users with more relevant results, Google has added a local package to its search results. This group of three nearby companies appears to be fulfilling the query. They are listed at the top of the first results page, along with a map showing their location.

This was good news for local businesses competing with national brands. For search engine optimization professionals, however, this has created a new wrinkle in their work.

In addition to creating competition for local search results, this also opened the door for, you guessed it, local paid search ads.

And those aren’t the only things pushing organic results down. Depending on the search, your link may also have to compete with:

In addition, Google started answering questions directly (and suggesting related questions and answers). This has given rise to a phenomenon known as “no-click searches”, which are searches that end up on the SERPs without clicking through to another website.

In 2020, almost 65% of all searches received no clicks, which is worrying for anyone who makes a living creating them.

With this in mind, and as organic results sink lower and lower, it’s easy to see why some SEO professionals are getting frustrated. But savvy online marketers see these as more than challenges – they see them as opportunities.

For example, if you can’t get your link to appear at the top of the SERP, you can use a structured data tag to grab a featured snippet. While this isn’t technically an SEO tactic, it is a way to generate clicks and traffic, which is the ultimate goal.

Use Your Voice

Use Your Voice

Not too long ago, writing down or making a grocery list meant finding a piece of paper and writing on it with a pen. Like a caveman.

Thankfully, those days are gone, or at least on the way out, as technology has replaced them.

Whether you’re using Siri to play your favorite song, asking Cortana how much the moon weighs, or asking Alexa to check Apple’s stock price, most of the internet is now available using just your voice.

In 2020, there were 4.2 million digital personal assistant devices in use worldwide. And that number is expected to double by 2024 as more people use Amazon Echo, Sonos One, Google Nest Hub and the like.

And users don’t even own one of these smart speakers to use the power of voice search. 90% of iPhone owners use Siri, and 75% of smartphone owners use Google Assistant.

With the advent of these virtual assistants, we have seen a huge increase in voice search. Here are some interesting facts about voice search:

It depends who you are. If you work in SEO (and since you’re reading this, we’re going to assume you do), this poses a few problems.

After all, how do you generate clicks to your site if the clicks aren’t involved?

The answer is quite obvious: you need to optimize for voice search.

Voice-activated devices don’t work like manual search, so your SEO content needs to take this into account.

The best way to do this again is to improve the quality of your information. Your content needs to be the best answer to the person’s question that ensures it ranks at the very top and gets the verbal clicks (is that a term?) you need.

And since people have found that more specific queries generate more specific answers, it’s important that your content fills that niche.

Overall, specificity seems to be a growing trend in SEO, so it’s no longer enough to just have web copy that says “t-shirts for sale.”

Instead, you need to drill down to exactly what your target is looking for, e.g. “garfield medium + yellow + long sleeve shirts”.

What Does All This Mean For SEO?

What Does All This Mean For SEO?

Now that we’ve examined the main reasons why pessimists and cynics are falsely declaring the demise of SEO, let’s take a look at what we’ve learned along the way:

Did you notice a theme that runs throughout the piece? This is evolution, survival of the fittest.

In order to ensure that you do not lose important web traffic, you must constantly monitor the SEO situation and adapt to changes, as always.

Your strategy must become more sophisticated as new opportunities present themselves. Must be ready to spin quickly.

Above all, you need to realize that your content is still the most important thing.

If you can best answer the query, your website will receive the traffic you are looking for. If it can’t, you have to rework it until it does.

Just remember, like rock and roll, SEO will never die.

Featured Image: sitthiphong/Shutterstock

Does WordPress have better SEO?

Does WordPress have better SEO?

Our clients often ask us if WordPress is good for SEO. The answer is yes! Once known primarily as a blogging platform, WordPress has built a reputation for providing a solid foundation for SEO as a CMS – and for good reason. It’s no coincidence that WordPress sites rank well in Google.

Does WordPress affect SEO? WordPress themes affect site speed and performance Changing WordPress themes affects your SEO and overall site load time, so it’s important to choose one that loads as quickly as possible without compromising other important SEO aspects.

Is HTML or WordPress better for SEO?

In terms of comparison, both perform well in SEO, but HTML is slightly better than WordPress because WordPress contains more plugin installations, which affects the security and page speed of websites. HTML contains unlimited customization options for best SEO performance.

Why WordPress is not good for SEO?

In conclusion: WordPress is great for SEO. But if your WordPress site isn’t set up well for on-page SEO, the limitation is you, not WordPress. Because with a clean, fast theme, a few plugins, and a little hard work fixing what needs fixing, there’s nothing you can’t do to optimize your WordPress site.

Is it better to use WordPress or HTML?

If your website does not need updates, regular changes or any additional content, HTML is a better choice as it will make your website run faster. If you want to expand your business website and constantly update it, then WordPress is the best choice.

Can you add SEO to WordPress?

Adding a sitemap to WordPress is easy – you can do it with a targeted plugin like Google XML Sitemaps or a comprehensive SEO tool like Yoast SEO.

Is WordPress best for SEO?

But for you as a marketer, there is one that stands out: WordPress is the best CMS for SEO.

Is WordPress SEO free?

All-in-One SEO for WordPress (AIOSEO) The free version of AIOSEO has all the essential features, while the pro version gives you everything you need to outpace your competitors. It comes with the simplest setup wizard that automatically helps you choose the best SEO settings for your business.

Is WordPress really better for SEO?

If your SEO requirements are minimal and you care about easy-to-use website builder, Wix might be your best bet. For advanced users looking for the best of both worlds with scalability and customization, as well as those planning to use SEO as a long-term strategy, WordPress wins hands down.

Do WordPress sites rank better?

Using WordPress does NOT mean you will receive higher search rankings. “There is a lot of misinformation out there about WordPress sites always ranking better than sites built with website builders. Based on our experience, this is simply not the case.”

Why WordPress is not good for SEO?

In conclusion: WordPress is great for SEO. But if your WordPress site isn’t set up well for on-page SEO, the limitation is you, not WordPress. Because with a clean, fast theme, a few plugins, and a little hard work fixing what needs fixing, there’s nothing you can’t do to optimize your WordPress site.

Why is SEO not dead?

SEO is not dead, it’s just changing. Of course, the CTR is lower and Google is constantly tweaking its algorithm, but that’s to be expected. Google has made it so you can easily target your ideal customer through SEO or paid ads. Before they came, it was much more difficult.

Is SEO still relevant in 2021? So, is SEO still a good investment in 2021 and beyond?! Short answer: YES! SEO is more important than ever! It is still one of the most powerful digital marketing strategies that produces long-term results.

Is SEO still relevant in 2020?

While some traditional marketing methods may be becoming obsolete, SEO is here to stay in 2020. Whether you invested in SEO early or are just getting started, it can still be a major driver of traffic and leads to your website.

Is SEO a thing anymore?

Don’t be fooled: SEO isn’t dying, it’s evolving much more than it did years ago. If you’ve been debating whether or not to invest in SEO for your business, read on to see why SEO isn’t dying—in fact, thriving—in 2021.

Is SEO worth it 2020?

The short answer is that SEO is very effective – not only for generating traffic, but also for leads and sales. Do not worry. The long answer includes research and data, not just empty statements. Most SEOs get too caught up in search-specific metrics like SERPs (Search Engine Results Page), rankings, and organic traffic.

Will SEO become obsolete?

As long as search engine results pages exist, SEO will never become obsolete. As long as the algorithm continues to search our websites, we will always need SEO experts.

Will SEO exist in 5 years?

SEO is not going away in the next five years because social media and search engines will more than likely merge. Facebook has already started doing this: on average, they perform more than 1.5 billion searches every day. Twitter did the same; have joined in partnership with Google.

Is SEO obsolete?

Don’t be fooled: SEO isn’t dying, it’s evolving much more than it did years ago. If you’ve been debating whether or not to invest in SEO for your business, read on to see why SEO isn’t dying—in fact, thriving—in 2021.

Is SEO still relevant in 2022?

Will SEO still be relevant in 2022? Of course. Although some SEO tactics that were effective in the past have stopped working, SEO has continued to evolve. It’s constantly reshaping itself to try to better match the user’s intent, cutting out unwanted, ineffective tactics to make it better.

What do I need to know about SEO 2022?

SEO in 2022: 10 Important SEO Trends You Need to Know [Podcast]

  • User intent. One of the most talked about topics in 2022? …
  • Content quality. …
  • Localization of SERPs and SERP changes. …
  • Images and visual content. …
  • Automation. …
  • Natural language processing and machine learning. …
  • Mobile and user experience. …
  • Durability.

How SEO will change in 2022?

By 2022, expect SEO rankings to become more competitive by providing high-quality content that is helpful to internet users. Content that only tries to chase its audience by linking to unnecessary resources will not be effective as it is today.

Is SEO worth the money?

The short answer is that SEO is very effective – not only for generating traffic, but also for leads and sales. Do not worry. The long answer includes research and data, not just empty statements. Most SEOs get too caught up in search-specific metrics like SERPs (Search Engine Results Page), rankings, and organic traffic.

Do I really need SEO? It can help you increase your credibility, get more traffic and improve your online visibility. Plus, you’ll get all these results if you spend a penny on ad space. Additionally, SEO is a great way to improve your target audience’s overall experience with your brand.

Is SEO a waste of money?

SEO is not dead. It’s not a waste of money if and when done right. The grass is not greener on the other side; it is greener where it was watered. If you take care of your website, it will take care of you!

Is there still money in SEO?

The simple answer is that SEO can be a great way to make a decent living, and provided you have the skills to grow your SEO practice, the sky is the limit. There are many ways to make money online these days: from building an e-commerce website to creating a blog to promote products and services.

Is SEO worth the money?

The short answer is that SEO is very effective – not only for generating traffic, but also for leads and sales. Do not worry. The long answer includes research and data, not just empty statements. Most SEOs get too caught up in search-specific metrics like SERPs (Search Engine Results Page), rankings, and organic traffic.

Is SEO a Waste of time?

Focusing on SEO to increase traffic at the expense of building real relationships with your audience is a waste of time. Worse, you never know what SEO mistakes you’re making unless you learn some basic SEO skills. You may be penalized for keyword stuffing or creating bad backlinks.

Why SEO is a waste of money?

– Money spent on SEO is pure waste. The first page rankings for my company’s keywords are too competitive. Top results include corporations, news agencies, and other peerless sites.

Is SEO worth it 2020?

The short answer is that SEO is very effective – not only for generating traffic, but also for leads and sales. Do not worry. The long answer includes research and data, not just empty statements. Most SEOs get too caught up in search-specific metrics like SERPs (Search Engine Results Page), rankings, and organic traffic.

Do 4k videos rank higher on YouTube?

It won’t hurt and you might rank higher in search results if you create 4k content. As 4k content becomes more widespread among viewers, you may see a slight improvement in SEO because you’ve been entrenched in the results for so long. But at the end of the day, most viewers can’t or won’t watch your video in 4k for a while.

Are Backlinks still important for SEO in 2022?

Backlinks are still important to SEO performance because they are the foundation of Google’s original PageRank algorithm. Countless independent studies have been conducted in the SEO industry proving the impact of backlinks on organic search performance.

Is SEO worth it in 2022? Yes, SEO pays – in 2022, in the future, in the past and always. As long as websites and search engines have existed, SEO has been necessary. SEO in 10 years will likely be very different from SEO today, but you will always need to ensure that your website is sending the right signals to search engines to find you.

Is link building in SEO Still Effective in 2022?

Are backlinks still relevant in 2022? Definitely. If you want to manage a successful, long-term SEO strategy, backlinks should not be ignored. The more high-quality and relevant backlinks a page has, the more traffic it will receive from Google.

Are backlinks still important for SEO in 2021?

Backlinks remain one of the most powerful SEO tools in 2021. Along with great content, they are a surefire way to not only improve your search rankings, but also increase conversions.

Is link building still relevant to SEO?

As you improve your website’s visibility, you should know that link building remains one of the most effective SEO tactics. As Google continues to consider high-quality backlinks when determining a website’s credibility, investing in a link building campaign can potentially give you more opportunities to rank and convert.

Are backlinks worth in 2022?

If you’re at all interested in link building, you probably know that backlinks are still important in 2022. But did you know that backlinks continue to be Google’s strongest ranking signal? We’ll discuss why this is (along with some hard evidence) in a moment.

Is it worth paying for backlinks?

Buying quality backlinks is a good strategy because: You can choose the sites you link to. You can create backlinks to pages that normally don’t attract links. You can quickly build backlinks.

Are backlinks still important 2022?

The short answer is yes, but they shouldn’t be your only strategy. While backlinks are not the only ranking factor, they are still very important. The main difference is how you go about getting backlinks to your content.

Are backlinks still important for SEO in 2021?

Backlinks remain one of the most powerful SEO tools in 2021. Along with great content, they are a surefire way to not only improve your search rankings, but also increase conversions.

Is backlinks important for SEO?

Backlinks are important for SEO because they tell Google that another source finds your content valuable enough to link to it in their content. When a site gains additional backlinks, search engines conclude that the site has valuable content that is worthy of a good SERP ranking.

Are backlinks still relevant in 2022?

The short answer is yes, but they shouldn’t be your only strategy. While backlinks are not the only ranking factor, they are still very important. The main difference is how you go about getting backlinks to your content.

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