SEO Trends For 2020 – How To Implement Them In Your SEO Strategy?

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While SEO is all about giving Google the right signals; the trend is increasingly evolving to cater to the user rather than market to search engines. In our previous blog, we highlighted the trends dominating SEO, i.e. the rise of featured snippets, voice search and visual search along with the decrease in the organic CTR rate. In this article, we’ll be including steps on how to incorporate these trends into your SEO Strategy.

Featured Snippet/Position Zero

So, what are Google Featured Snippets?

When you type in a search query, the result that pops up above the #1 organic result is called a Featured Snippet. Also known as Position Zero because, well, it appears above the #1 organic position on the Search Engine Results Page (SERP). The Snippet Box displays a ‘snippet’ of the information, along with a Title, Image, URL as well as a Link. It can be in any one of the following formats – paragraphs, tables, lists, charts, knowledge graphs or YouTube videos.

Position Zero - SEO Trend for 2020

They are gaining prominence as they tend to drive more traffic, offer greater visibility and also give credibility to your website. Below is an example of a Featured Snippet to the search query “How to make your content stand out?”.

 

How to Optimize for Featured Snippets?

Google will only rank information that is relevant at a given moment. This means, that if you have secured Position Zero once, you may not be there forever. It requires staying at the top of the game at all times.

Quality is the name of the game and it calls for producing content that answers query relevant to your service or product.

Below is a checklist on ‘how to make your content ‘snip-able’’.

  1. Ask Questions: Make the search query a question on your page. Use search terms such as ‘What’, ‘Why’, ‘Who’, ‘Where’, ‘When’ and ‘How’. You can use:
    1. Google to understand how people search
    2. Answer The Public Tool where you can type in your term and it will show you numerous questions around it.
    3. Collaborate with your customer support/sales team
    4. Look into ‘social’ comments or hunt around forms such as Quora and Reddit
  2. Answer Them: Write in a way to answer to search terms we’ve mentioned above. Your content should be tailored to answer particular questions with the keyword in the answer of the featured snippet
  3. Create a Well-weighted Article: Structure your content in a way so that users can find all the answers in one place, instead of scattering it around small articles.
  4. Get your Formatting On Point: Proper formatting for various forms of Featured Snippets and ensure that the answer is directly under the question.
    1. In the case of Paragraphs –
      1. Keep it concise – The suggested length should be between 40 – 50 words
      2. Format appropriately with the paragraph HTML tag
      3. Keep the answer directly under the question
      4. Insert appropriate H1s, H2s, etc.
    2. In the case of Tables –
      1. Format appropriately with the table HTML tag
    3. In the case of Lists
      1. Use proper chronological numbering for a list, i.e., Step 1, Step 2, etc.
  5. High-quality visuals – Include Videos and Images.
  6. How-to Section: This will be an added plus on your website; where you can target all search queries around your business.

Voice Search

Users will search as they speak and it goes without saying that we need to include scalable phrases in the content. So how does Google decide which content to show up for voice search? Google tends to target the featured snippets, content that expertly answers the search question, etc. Your content needs to rank in the first three positions to rank for Voice Search and ranking on Position ZERO will also give your content leverage to rank. Below is an excerpt shared in The Keenfolks Blog.

Voice Search - SEO Trend for 2020

Voice search is quick and convenient and gaining immense popularity for local searches. Below are the statistics that show the rising importance of voice search.

  1. 50% of all the searches will be voice searches by 2020.
  2. By 2020, 30% of all the searches will be done using devices without a screen.
  3. 20% of the adults use mobile voice search at least once monthly.
  4. 20% of all the searches on the mobile device are voice-based.
  5. 60% of the smartphone users have tried voice search at least once in the past 12 months.

How to optimize for voice search?

For the most part, the tactics to optimize for voice search is the same as Featured Snippets.

  1. Write as your users speak in a conversational manner. Ans
  2. Include long-tail keywords, question keywords and filler words. FAQ formats do well for voice search.
  3. Ensure that your website is fast loading and properly optimized.
  4. Keep your Flesch Kincaid Grade to 8, which means that the content should be easily readable by a high school student.
  5. Use structured data.

Visual Search

Searching using images, rather than typing in texts. Users are already using Google Lens by more than 1 billion times and Pinterest gets 600 million visual searches per month. Why do you need to optimise your website for visual search? Google confirmed that websites that use an image to the centre or above the fold, will have higher chances to rank, this, keeping in mind page authority and content freshness.

How to optimize for visual search?

      1. Add descriptive Alt Text along with relevant keywords.
      2. Submit to the sitemap so that it is accessible to crawlers.
      3. Apply schema markup.
      4. Optimize Title Image, File Name and Image Size.
      5. High-quality images must be used.
      6. For crawlers to access them, the images must be submitted to stamp.

With Featured Snippets, ADs, Image Carousel and Answer Boxes screaming for attention on the first page of SERPS, the organic click-through rate has shot down comparatively. In the U.S. the drop in organic CTR has been greater, going from 40.1 percent to 29.7 percent of all SERPs. Paid clicks have also more than doubled. A few ways to combat the decline of organic CTR would be to use emotional triggers and stay away from power words and clickbait titles. Google is getting increasingly better and better at giving the users what they are looking for, and mastering search intent is key to stay at the opt of the game.

That was all for our tips and tricks to stay on top of the 2020 SEO trends. Stay tuned for our next article on Content Marketing.

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