Search Engine Optimization is a cornerstone of every digital marketing strategy, and the team at PBJ Marketing is always on the lookout for the latest updates and trends. We learned a lot from SEO this past year, and we expect many of the following developments to make an impact on SEO in the New Year.
- SEO is a growing industry.
It seems like only yesterday blogs were flooded with articles claiming SEO is dead, but that couldn’t be further from the truth. Thanks to the efforts of many digital marketing professionals, the SEO industry is now a $65 billion industry. In the past, SEO was just an added side service offered by digital marketing agencies, but now there are entire agencies based around building SEO strategies, alone.
- Artificial intelligence is playing a larger role.
AI is becoming increasingly ubiquitous with our everyday lives, and it’s also starting to influence SEO. Data shows that roughly 20% of search queries are performed via smartphone voice search. Also, out of the 3.5 billion searches performed on Google every day, approximately 15% of searches have never been searched before.As a result, Google is harnessing the power of artificial intelligence to handle these inquires. Furthermore, with a growing number of homes equipped with Amazon Echo and Google Home, tech giants will continue this trend to streamline the user experience with AI technology.
- Google made many positive updates.
So far this year, Google made approximately 500 tweaks to its algorithm, and although many of them may have passed up the radar undetected, some of them helped revolutionized SEO.
Mobile-friendly boost – Now that mobile dominates search inquiries, earlier this year Google upgraded its mobile-friendly ranking algorithm, and digital marketing professionals noticed. We can’t stress the importance of brands having compelling mobile sites to stay competitive in a crowded marketplace.Penguin 4.0 – Considered a gentler algorithm, Penguin 4.0 devalues content with bad links instead of penalizing it. As a result, digital marketing professionals across the industry had to rethink their link structures completely.