By Navneet Kaushal, Founder & CEO, PageTraffic
SEO Predictions for 2017 will not be something that is going to change the world of SEO – as it will continue to evolve just as it has in the previous years. Most experts tend to take the safe route when making SEO predictions, particularly at the beginning of each year… hence, it is advised that predictions should be taken with a pinch of salt as no matter how experienced and authoritative the writer is we will know what happened only at the end of that year.
Now that being said, the main purpose of this article post is to have a constructive view of what could happen over the next 12 months… taking in to account, the SEO trends of 2016 and the previous years.
Of course, there would be some key changes, but apart from that, little remains to be said. Obviously, new technologies and new trends will emerge, and gain popularity, and a few of the existing popular practices with disappear.
So, let’s take a look for what is ahead in 2017.
SEO Predictions for 2017 – Mobile, Mobile, Mobile. TheShift from DeskTop to Mobile
Sometime during early November, Google indicated that their index would begin to slowly shift to a Mobile-first focus. Obviously, this further justified the reality that the era of the mobile search has begun… It now was about 60 percent of the total search volume. That’s about close to a 2:1 ratio between mobile and desktop. It does not stop there... as it is projected to increase further as we move into 2017.
Hence, it is fairly clear to say that Google is fast moving to a mobile world. In fact, mobile-first indexing seems like the inevitable consequence of a year (or if not more) of almost exclusively dedicated to forcing a change of mindset from desktop to mobile. With this announcement, it is clear that we now we now have to prioritize mobile over desktops.
Obviously, in such a scenario, i.e., in a mobile-only world, the relevance of local search is even higher. More than 88 percent use online MOBILE search to seek out more information about a company
Accelerated Mobile Pages or AMPs
SEOs have long considered that mobile search as one of the many key specializations of SEO... That mentality did not change much back during end of 2015, when Google announced AMP.
It is no secret that we live in the age of mobile and smartphones. You see people just about anywhere fiddling with their mobile devices. As a result, this has had a significant outcome on overall search trends.
Sometime back in February, 2016, Google started to send people to AMP pages in their TOP STORIES section of the Google Search Results page on mobile phones. Other key industry players have been collaborating for over a year to make this become a reality. Through 2016, Google has pushed several AMP-related actions for adoption it is fast becoming accepted. One of the much talked about factors was the AMP validator that they built into the Google Search Console or Webmaster Tools for webmasters. This helps them QA their own AMP-optimized content and pages. Alternately, you can also self-validate with this AMP validation post on the Accelerated Mobile Pages Project website itself.
The bottom line is that people want prompt answers to their queries on mobile devices. This has led to Google pushing this hard during 2016 so it is high time you catch up, as this will greatly decide your SEO strategy for 2017. In short, it is obvious that the AMP function will be popular in 2017.
SERPs Will Begin to Show More of Long Form Content, Instead of Category and Product Pages
Another interesting fact is that the mobile search keywords are longer, or long tail keywords, rather than their smaller cousins at desktop. It is obvious that users are getting sick of the short form content that most retailers currently offer and which show the same headlines and post titles with little value… invariably their keyword searches end up in category or product pages. The best way you can prevent this is by providing lower quantities of richer, more detailed, and long-form content, which will make you stand out from the competition.
Artificial Intelligence or AI Could See Wider Adoption
Artificial Intelligence or AI has been an important component in Google’s suite of technologies for sometime now. This is only going to increase in 2017 with other tech companies following suit.
Voice Searches or Assistants
More people would be using voice searches in the New Year… About, 20 percent of searches are now done using voice recognition software. It is predicted that by 2020, 50 percent of all online searches will be done through voice software. This will also lead to more accuracy in search. (Source: Comscore - a global media and analytics company)
Make Frequent Audits
And, as a final say, it is advised that you do a SEO Audit very regularly… Although search engines are now well developed, it is no excuse to periodically evaluating your SEO strategies, and checking your data…Stagnancy will only lead to a decay of any SEO campaign. With a regular audit strategy, you can constantly identify any glitches and correct them before they become too problematic.
A closing word… SEO is all about patience… I cannot guarantee that these SEO Predictions For 2017 alone will be enough to increase your site’s rankings in search engines, but for sure, they will definitely make you a better online marketer in 2017.