Search Engine Optimization (SEO) is a process that uses different techniques and strategies for the purpose of increasing the visibility of content to search engines. SEO does this by tracking and analyzing the search behavior of consumers.
Because information is readily available on the Internet, the online behavior of consumers can easily be influenced by the content they read from websites.
Thus, the SEO strategies you implemented with great success in 2022, might not yield the same results in 2023 because consumers’ tastes, demands, and preferences might have changed.
The saying, “If you’re not moving forward, you’re moving backward” applies to SEO. In this article, we’ll discuss the SEO trends to look out for in 2023 so you can stay ahead of the competition.
1. Create an E-Commerce Portal and Optimize for Shopping
E-commerce will continue its upward trajectory in 2023. It doesn’t matter if you’re offering products and services. Creating an e-commerce portal for your business will open up another stream of revenue.
If you’re nodding your head in approval, you’re not alone. There are an estimated 24 million e-commerce sites on the Internet and this number will only rise as more consumers are embracing the mobile lifestyle.
The good news is that it’s not late to join the e-commerce race. You can catch up with the competition and even pull ahead by a few strides if you apply SEO techniques to optimize your e-commerce portal.
- Provide highly-detailed descriptions for each product and service.
- Use the right keywords in your descriptions and alt-tags for images.
- Create an e-portal that’s mobile responsive.
- Ensure a fast loading time for your e-commerce page.
- Use high-resolution images for your products.
- Present social proof via product reviews, testimonials, and links to websites that have availed of your products or services.
2. Allocate More Resources for Video Marketing
If video marketing had a jersey number, it should be retired in the digital marketing industry because the process has become a mainstay in the content strategy toolbox almost every year.
Given that 86% of businesses have used video marketing as a tool for delivering content for the past 2 years, we can’t see any reason why the trend won’t continue in 2023 – and beyond.
Statistics support the power of video as a content marketing strategy:
- The use of videos increases brand awareness by 139%.
- 55% of consumers report that their purchasing decisions were influenced by videos.
- Adding a video on your home or landing page can improve your website’s conversion rate by 86%.
- 70% of consumers say their decision to purchase a product was influenced by an ad they saw on YouTube.
- Research conducted by Forrester showed that web pages with videos were 53 times more likely to appear on the first page of the SERP.
Videos are effective in marketing because they appeal to the senses of sight and hearing. The emotions that influence buying decisions are best triggered by a combination of moving images, graphics, text, and audio than just text and graphics.
What are the best ways to optimize videos for marketing?
- Produce videos about topics and issues that interest your target market and not those that interest you.
- Support your videos with the use of keywords in descriptions and hashtags on social media.
- Are your objectives to drive traffic, generate leads, promote a product or service, and create brand awareness? Keep your videos under 2 minutes and run them on platforms such as YouTube and TikTok.
- Is your objective to build your company’s reputation as an expert? Once you’ve developed a good-sized following, producing informative/explainer videos that run 20 to 30 minutes is great for developing brand loyalty.
Although we recommend hiring a professional videographer to create your video-based content, there are entrepreneurs who have found great success using their smartphones to create videos.
3. Integrate ML and AI Technologies On Your Platforms
As Google continues to push for higher quality content and better User Experience (UX), expect Machine Learning (ML) and Artificial Intelligence (AI) to play a bigger role in SEO in the coming year.
Marketers have been using ML and AI for keyword research and link-building purposes as these technologies can yield more accurate results that conform with Google’s ever-changing search algorithms.
Another way you can introduce ML and AI technologies in your SEO strategy is to prepare your platforms to accommodate features such as voice-activated search.
Google itself created its own AI language program – LaMDA or Language Model for Dialogue Applications – to assist in identifying voice-activated search and understanding conversational speech in order to retrieve the best and most relevant URLs on its SERP.
Here are a few tips on how to prepare yourself:
- Study the Online Behavior of Your Target Market – What products are consumers looking for in your industry? And what are the common questions asked about them? For example, if you’re an online retailer of supplements, weight-loss pills, fat burners, and whey protein could be the most popular products. Once you’ve identified them, find out the Frequently Asked Questions or FAQs about these items.
- Match Your Content With Popular Voice Queries – How do your customers look for the products they need? Going back to our example on supplements, if they’re looking for whey protein, do they ask “What is the best-tasting whey protein?” or “number one brand of whey protein”?Create a list of popular voice queries and include these keywords in your content. Thus, when writing product descriptions for your whey protein, you could write the first sentence as “ Brand X has consistently been named as the best-tasting whey protein in the market.” When a customer launches a voice query using these keywords, Google will be able to find your content.
Google stresses that despite the precision of ML and AI, it’s not possible to create memorable UX without crafting content with the human touch. Remember, the ranking factors of Google’s algorithm are guided by the search engine’s EAT principle:
- E – Expertise
- A- Authoritativeness
- T – Trustworthiness
You have to prove to the user that your website is worth his time by providing top-notch content that’s useful, informative, and unique. It must be relevant to the user and written in a manner that’s engaging and compelling.
In 2023, your content marketing strategy must find the right balance between precision and relevance. Put in another way, ML and AI provide the science but the human mind and heart transform content into art.
4. Optimize Images on Your Website
Once a consumer clicks on your URL, the shift focuses on the types of images and graphics you have on your page. Dynamic, relevant, and captivating images will help entice visitors to further explore your website.
However, for the consumer to click on your URL, you must help Google deliver your web page to the SERP. And one of the best ways to do this is to optimize the images on your web page.
A common mistake of many businesses that choose the images on their website is prioritizing the aesthetic appeal without considering how these pictures can affect functionality.
For example, some image files can be so large that they will slow down the loading time of your web page.
So while the image is indeed beautiful and attractive to look at, the consumer won’t get the chance to savor the experience because he will abandon the search if it’s taking too long for the page to load.
In addition to keeping track of the size of the image file, here are other ways you can optimize the images on your web page:
- Sometimes you just can’t avoid it. You’re using high-resolution images that are relevant to your business but the files are quite large. The simple solution is to compress large-sized image files.
- Use proprietary images or images that are unique to your business. Buying stock images is the fastest and most convenient way to add pictures on your website. Many of these pictures are taken by professionals or by individuals with a keen eye for beautiful images. But anybody can use these images for their websites. On the other hand, proprietary images are yours alone. Don’t forget to copyright your images so that no one can steal them for their own purpose. Remember, Google always rewards fresh and unique content.
- Consider converting images to WEBP format which can help you use high-resolution images without affecting page loading time.
- Tag your images with the right keywords.
5. Optimize the Power of Snippets
Snippets are presented as a summary of the key points of the web page. These usually appear in bullet point format although sometimes snippets are shown as FAQs or even as a one-sentence summary of the URL.
Over the years, snippets have increased in value because it helps the user assess which web page contains information that’s more useful and relevant to his search query.
To create effective snippets, you have to put yourself in the position of the searcher. What types of information on your web page would immediately catch his interest?
Google rewards websites with expertly worded snippets because they give User Experience a boost.
It should go without saying, but we’ll mention it anyway!
Always keep track of changes in Google’s search algorithm. The ranking factors could change without warning and these revisions can have serious repercussions on your SEO strategy.
If you want your SEO game to be always on point, give us a call or drop us an email and we’ll take care of all of your optimization needs. Let’s have a quick chat or if you’re available, we can discuss your next digital marketing strategy over coffee!
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