After reading hundreds of SEO prediction for 2017, I am convinced that predictions are also like opinions. Everyone has one. But here are the three absolute best predictions that I could find, predictions that really matter for your SEO.
Schema Markup Will Become Crucial
An overwhelming majority of Google searches now display a featured snippet on top of the search results. These are the answers Google thinks people are looking for. Right now, the page where the featured snippet comes from is usually not the top organic result. But Larry Kim of WordStream thinks that’s about to change. He says snippets are currently in a sort of testing phase and Google is going to converge them with the top-ranked organic listing in 2017. This means you should provide in your content the answers to the questions your customers are likely to have about your business or niche, then use schema markup to highlight these answers and hope that Google will feature some of them, along with your website.
Accelerated Mobile Pages (AMP) Will Rule Mobile Listings
Ruth Attwood of 4Ps Marketing (along with many other marketing gurus) believes that AMP is going to get bigger this year. Google is pushing it aggressively and it’s only a matter of time before it reaches full spectrum deployment, just like the mobile friendly update. AMP optimized mobile pages load much faster than non-AMP pages and Google displays an AMP logo beside the result to tell the users they can expect better loading times if they click on that result. AMP pages can expect not only better rankings, but also higher CTRs. The impact of AMP will be even more pronounced as the mobile-only index kicks in. If you’re still not thinking “mobile first,” start now.
Long Tail Keywords Will Replace Short Keywords
According to B2C, 41% of adults and 55% of teenagers are already using voice search daily. Advancements in natural language processing (NLP) have brought the speech recognition word error rate from 20% two years ago to 8% right now, and it’s going to get even more accurate. Voice queries are usually long tail (more words) and are more diversified than typed queries. Hence, we can expect to see the balance of keyword optimization tilting in favor of long tail keywords. Google is already prepared to accommodate long tail queries, as it has increased the character limit of page titles on its mobile SERPs. The question is, are you prepared too? This year, marketers and SEOs will need to revisit their keyword lists and include as many long tails as they can find (which by the way can be very easy if you focus on answering the questions that people have about your product or service).
So, are you ready to take advantage of these top SEO trends this year? Shoot us a quick message if you need assistance.