2013 was no doubt a very interesting year for SEO, especially because of the updates Google made that have changed the way many online marketers advertise and build their online business. However, 2014 is looking to be just as surprising, and in order for internet marketers to still remain at the top with their business and marketing efforts, they'll definitely need to consider some of the improved SEO techniques we'll take a closer look at in this article.
Build an Audience
If you've noticed it already, then you're probably right: Google search engine result pages are slowly, but surely morphing from a list of URLs into a well organized (in terms of value and relevancy) selection of knowledge for users. Google Graph is already evolving and expanding, while the Hummingbird algorithm helped a lot with improving the way context was parsed in search queries. Because of that, website publishers should expect fewer visitors to their websites unless they know how to properly build their audience using key techniques.
Releasing an application, getting circlers on Google Plus, likes on Facebook, followers on Twitter and creating mailing lists are all very valuable strategies they should consider right away if they are to be successful in 2014's SEO scene.
Another vital change in the Hummingbird algorithm lies in Mobile search. Since mobile internet use has seen a massive increase in the previous year, Google now takes voice search and ASR into consideration. The new algorithm has a very sharp understanding of these types of searches, which are generally driven through natural or conversational language. For instance, when you perform a search, instead of typing in some keywords, your query's going to take a more question-oriented format. This means that you won't say "find pizza restaurant" anymore, but actually say "How can I find the nearest pizza restaurant?" or maybe "How do I fix my sink?” As a result, content that’s written to answer questions will rank higher.
According to latest stats, in 2013 more than 50 percent of users accessing the web did so by using their smartphone. If you're a real Internet marketer, then you know this is a clear sign you should make every possible effort to improve the experience of your mobile users. Google loves responsive websites and so do your customers, so don't expect great conversion rates if your website doesn't meet these new requirements.
Social Media Signals (+1s, Likes and Shares)
Pages with more +1s, Likes and Shares will always rank higher in Google. Because of that, you should do everything you can to get as many of the three as possible. On top of that, you also need to know that Google plus is very well integrated in Google's Search Algorithm. This means that you will need to develop your SEO techniques by first of all creating an account on social sharing sites like Reddit, Stumbleupon, Pinterest, Twitter, Facebook and most importantly, your Google Plus Page. Next, you'll have to share your newest content on all of them, which involves quite a bit of work. Now getting back to Google Plus, there are a few things you should do with it and they include:
- Creating a Google Plus Business Page.
- Joining and sharing your content on other Google+ communities.
- Keep adding new and fresh content on your Google Plus Profile and Google Plus page.
- Adding rel=author markup with your profile on Google Plus.
- Adding rel=publisher markup to your site using your Google Plus Page.
- Linking your site to your Google Plus Page (be sure the checkmark appears after doing so).
Set up Google Authorship
Last but not least, if you want your SEO techniques in 2014 to keep you at the top of the competition, you'll need to set up Google Authorship for your blog posts. Currently, it's the only way to show the rest of the world that it's you who is the owner of your blog content. By now you may have noticed that in some cases, small profile pictures are associated to links when performing a search on Google. This happens because they’ve set up Google Authorship, which recognized them as the writers for those specific articles. In terms of numbers, doing so can increase your website traffic between 15% and 50% percent, and the best thing is that setting up authorship is a no brainer.
2014 is going to be an interesting year for SEO due to the many changes Google has made and continues to make everyday. However, by implementing these tips into your search engine optimization strategies, you'll be able to come up with techniques that can put you ahead of the competition and earn you the traffic your website needs to succeed.