Everything indicates that 2020 will be as stormy year for SEO as the year 2019. Over the past 12 months Google served us with three major algorithm changes (Core Update from March, June and August), introduced a new BERT algorithm in over 70 countries and many other smaller changes. If you think that 2020 will be much calmer year… You're wrong, my friend.
Voice search is the future
One the biggest change to SEO in the near future is going to the rapid growth of voice search. In 2019 Microsoft conducted a report about voice searching „Voice report. From answers to action: customer adoption of voice technology and digital assistants". According to this report, 69% of the surveyed group used voice search at least once. Moreover, more than 30% of smartphone users worldwide use voice technology at least once a week and 50% of all online searches are voice-based. It is estimated that up to year 2022 55% of American households will have a smart speaker. What does that mean for SEO? First of all, when voice search will be more popular than a text search, only one search result will matter. And if it's not you.. Houston, we have a problem! If you want to achieve better results in voice searching, you need to optimize your website ASAP.
Zero-click searches and SEO
In 2019 the so-called "Zero-click searches" accounted for virtually 50% of all Google searches and this tendency will probably increase in the coming years. The problem is that generating organic traffic is one of the main goals of SEO and how we are going to generate the traffic when soon there will be no need to click anywhere? Should we be concerned about all of this? Not necessarily. Main reason to use a zero-click search is to look for a quick info, i.e. address, phone number and short bio. In order to learn more facts, you will click a given link anyway. Therefore, the biggest challenge for SEO in the coming months will be coming to terms with "zero-click" searches and adapting to new realities.
Optimize your website for mobile devices
More than 30% of smartphone users worldwide use voice technology at least once a week. What does it mean for your website? If it's not optimized for mobile devices, it will not be served by Google in search results. In order to check whether your site is mobile friendly, Google created a simple Mobile-Friendly test. If your site doesn't pass it, some simple adjustments probably will solve your problems. For CMS users: try switching to a more flexible layout that will allow you to reconfigure your website to different screen sizes. There are couple of rules how to effectively create mobile-friendly content on your site. The most important thing is keeping paragraphs skort, adding headers and bullets lists to your text. And remember: quality over quantity!
Build your brand
Since 2018 and a major Google algorithm update nicknamed as „the medic update", if you want to rank well, you need to take care of your brand by building its expertise, authority and trustworthiness. Sounds familiar? Yes, it's E.A.T., a new name for what every high-quality page needs! One of the big factors in Google'a algorithm you'll need to think about is brand queries.
When someone searches your brand name, you need to make sure that most or - better - all of the first page is made of your own links. Building a brand is not easy and fast, but it's definitely worth all the work. With the help of social media, podcasts, marketing and high-quality content soon you'll give Google more brand links to index.
No reason to worry!