After the challenging year of 2020, many businesses dialed into social media want to know what is 2021 going to resemble? Today we will discuss 3 important trends you need to know from top experts in the field.
- A Focus on User + Search Intent
- Customer Analytics, Retention and Lifetime Value
- Brand SERP Optimization, Knowledge Graphs and Entities
Looking at what’s ahead for SEO professionals in 2021 can be tricky. We were dealt a hand in 2020 that no one was expecting and we had to learn to adapt to survive. The true constant is that a great SEO strategy should start by putting yourself in the user’s shoes and asking if content is genuinely valuable, if the brand seems trustworthy and is the website easy to use (especially on mobile).
There is much more to dig into when considering SEO in 2021. The strategies and tactics that will work and help businesses dominate in the SERPs and earn more revenue in 2021 are being defined.
Here’s a look at 3 top trends you need to know in 2021, according to the experts.
Trend #1: Focus on User + Search Intent
This year, the focus should be on user and search intent. Seriously! While it’s hardly a new trend or concept, every year refocus is important because searcher intent and behavior is changing all the time. Especially after the year that was 2020 when so much rapidly shifted.
The core of what is an Internet search has not changed – Google (and other search engines) is a place to go when people want to answer a question or to learn more about something.
Understanding the nature of why people search and helping them via content that offers answers is how your business will benefit.
This year, Google will get even better at recognizing when a searcher is looking for expert advice and will rank those posts above articles written by content writers who are lacking E-A-T. The SEO pros who will be successful in 2021 will be those who can truly understand how to meet a searchers’ needs.
Evaluate the search data and on-site journey of organically obtained leads – not just the search terms that they used to find your content but also on-site search and highlighted keywords for all pages that they visited. Aggregate that data and map it out for a content journey.
Trend #2: Customer Analytics, Retention & Lifetime Value
SEO of the past was mostly about driving traffic. However, SEO has evolved into much more.
This year you will be pushed more and more to make the traffic you gain work harder to close the gaps in revenue and provide true ROI. Needless to say, data on behavioral analytics will become the hottest commodity.
With less revenue earned in 2020, businesses will need to focus far more on customer retention and increasing customer lifetime value (LTV) than ever before.
Content must answer the questions, concerns and needs your customers are expressing in search and you need to be prepared for those terms. If not, you will risk others influencing them away from your brand. Also, it’s a good idea to provide stronger customer and self-support services online.
You must build trust with your readers when content is the most comprehensive, practical, and useful piece they’ve interacted with when searching. That kind of content requires focus, time, commitment, investment, to create.
Trend #3: Brand SERP Optimization, Knowledge Graphs & Entities
In 2021, tracking brand SERPs and knowledge panels will become the standard. The reality that entity-based search starts with Google’s confident understanding of who you are, what you offer, and what audience you serve has already gained enormous momentum. Savvy marketers will focus on looking at their brand as an entity and working in earnest on Google’s understanding of the ‘who you are’ part of that trio by creating or improving their presence in the Knowledge Graph.
Set up your organization to optimize the brand’s entire digital presence (e.g., FaceBook, IG, YouTube channel) and how Google features them.
Today and moving forward, it’s not just about your website… it’s about all of your owned properties and how they interact with one another on the SERP.
Begin centering focus on entities, topics and start utilizing Google Natural Language (and/or other similar SEO tools that provide NLP analysis.)
The one constant year-to-year is search engines are getting smarter every day and they have a good understanding of queries to an extent beyond keywords used in such queries. You better begin to expertly grasp the understanding of topics/entities related to the query and the intent behind the query.