“There are no secrets to success. It is the result of preparation, hard work and learning from failure,” Colin Powell once said. Who better to give advice on planning than the former Secretary of State? An appropriate plan steers your business away from disaster. In today’s market, that plan will include search engine optimization efforts.
SEO is Changing
Change is inevitable in SEO. With shifting consumer behavior and new technologies, previous strategies aren’t likely to work. Google’s RankBrain, for one, is revolutionizing search. The machine learning artificial intelligence system is part of Google’s overall algorithm, refining the process and learning through raw data. The AI is impacting website classification and backlink profiling, among others.
Google, however, is not your only concern in 2017. Here are other important steps to take for your SEO.
1. Audit Your Website
Regular website audits, SEO Werkz maintains, will reveal what is working and what needs changing. The inspection will help you come up with an appropriate plan for SEO. Audits also allow your business to focus resources, and not waste time and money.
2. Mobility Is No Longer an Edge, But a Necessity
Consumers are shifting to mobile from desktop for online activities. According to Search Engine Watch, 90% of Google’s organic search visits came from mobile. If your website isn’t mobile responsive or doesn’t feature adaptive design, you’re losing traffic and potential conversions.
3. Speed Up Load Times
Slow is good for leisure, but bad for business. For better SEO in 2017, focus on AMP or accelerated mobile pages. AMP was made first for news sites to further improve the user experience. With the unstoppable growth of mobile use, Google considers AMP a speedy step in the right direction. AMP can boost your website’s load time by as much as 15 to 85%.
4. Do Not Neglect Your Metadata
Meta descriptions are valuable to SEO in 2017. Ninety-nine percent of the top 10 sites used metadata as an optimization strategy.
5. Answer Your Users’ Needs Accordingly.
Micro-moments drive impulse purchases on mobile. Micro-moments are:
- I want to know (66% use smartphones after seeing an ad on TV.)
- I want to go (82% use search engines to look up a local business.)
- I want to do (91% use phones for ideas while working on a task.)
- I want to buy (82% use phones when deciding what to buy in-store.)