In the last year article, we posted about the SEO trends in 2020. Let’s see as we are in 2021, how these trends have changed and what are the important SEO metrics or trends in 2021. We compile these trends from multiple sources that host credible SEO learning materials.
Therefore, without further delay, let’s go through these 2021 SEO trends.
User and Search Intent
Just like last year, user and search intent are getting the spotlight as one of the most important factors in SEO. This factor has been the regular and one of the most important metrics for SEO.
One of the ways to understand the user and search intent is to actually look at the search results. Google is displaying the results based on the user and search intent. Therefore, by looking at the results, analyzing and forming what type of information and content needed for that particular intent, we can create and present content better.
You can do this in a few ways:
- By writing content that addresses the users’ needs instead of just your products and your companies.
- Raising your E-A-T (Expertise, Authoritativeness, and Trustworthiness) will definitely help your site SEO to be better.
- Make your website faster and less hassles (popups, registrations) for users to get what they want.
Satisfying your user intent is becoming more important than ever.
Core Web Vitals
In mid last year, Google announced core web vitals that will help to measure user experience:
- Largest Contentful Paint (LCP) to measure loading time.
- Time to Interactive (TI) to measure interactivity.
- Cumulative Layout Shift (CLS) to measure visual stability.
These core web vitals will become one of the ranking signals in Google SERPs in May 2021. Hence, it is very important to prioritize websites to perform well in these metrics. You can use Google Pagespeed to measure how your website is performing.
Focus on improving your core web vitals. Not only Google will thank you but your users will thank you further (which I think is more important, right?).
Brand, E-A-T, and In-Depth Content
Your E-A-T is usually encapsulated in your brand. Therefore, it is important that while performing SEO on your website, you are also building your brand in the online world as well as in the offline world. Brand mentions some say are monitored and factored as part of the SEO ranking.
Other ways are definitely to increase your E-A-T. Some of the ways to do this are definitely to increase the number of qualified backlinks into your website. Make sure that the backlinks you have to your website are from relevant and non-toxic sites. They also need to be done organically instead of using paid schemes with money-making anchors.
Another way to increase your E-A-T is to definitely increase the number of in-depth content about the topic. It is very important that the topic you are writing about answers the user or search intent.
Finally, you can also connect with influencers (such as bloggers, social media influencers, and others) to increase your brand mentions and backlinks. Just like backlinks, make sure that the associated influencers are in the same or related niche that your business is in. The keyword here is relevancy.
Smart Keyword Research
Google is pushing more zero click searches – for instance, providing answers even before visiting a website, showing answers using predictive search, and many more. Hence, it becomes more important for us to be able to do keyword research correctly.
Finding the right keywords that can help to drive traffics and in turn generating sales becomes a necessity. Some of the ways you can do this is to aiming for the long tail keywords, search keywords with buying intents, and many others.
On the other hand, zero click searches present an opportunity for us to raise our E-A-T and create brand awareness. These zero click search results are usually presented through our in-depth articles as well as through rich snippets in answers-like result and tools.
Therefore, it is vital for us to implement rich snippets on our major pages. You can check some of the rich snippets that are available on Google via this Google search gallery.
Using rich snippets will increase your chance to rank better in SERPs.
As more smart speakers such as Google Assistant, Apple’s Siri, and Amazon’s Alexa, are entering the market, voice search technology has gotten much better and popular. It is predicted that by 2022, 55% of the households will own a smart spaker.
To optimize for voice search, imagine longer phrases that people use in daily conversations. Use these phrases to optimize in some of your web pages.
Few years ago, Google releases an algorithm called RankBrain that uses artificial intelligence to provide better results.
Basically, how do you optimize SEO for RankBrain? Experts say that user experience signals might be one of the key signals such as click through rate (CTR) and time spent on page. Overall, focusing on providing the relevant answers to what the users are looking for AND creating a great user experience for the users might help you to win in optimizing for RankBrain.
It is undeniable that video consumption is increasing especially during this pandemic and might surpass all other content forms. Also, you can see that Google is frequently showing more video results in their SERPs.
Therefore, it is necessary that you optimize for your video channel (e.g. YouTube). You can easily optimize this by using the right keywords for your channel’s name and description. Just like writing article, your channel’s description should be written for the users and should not be forcefully crammed with keywords.
To discover what keywords you should use, try to use YouTube auto suggest search. Type in the first few characters of your keywords and see the suggestions that it provides. Use these keywords in your YouTube channel name and description.
We will provide more SEO strategy on optimizing your YouTube channel in the future.
Google My Business Listings
This is a must and is very easy to setup. If you currently do not have Google My Business, you need to have one right now! If you already have one, make sure you optimize them with the right keywords in the description, choosing the right categories, and other local optimizations. There are other Google Local SEO strategies that you can use.
TL;DR / Conclusion
In short, 2021 SEO trend is similar to last year’s trend. One of the top priorities for this year’s trend that you should have is improving your core web vitals. Other priorities that are very important are:
- Discovering user and search intent
- Brand, E-A-T, and In-Depth Content
- Smarter in researching for keywords
- Featured snippets
- Video channel optimizations
- Voice search optimization
- Google My Business
There are so many things to do in SEO. Our strategy starts with understanding our goals and auditing our current SEO situation. From the audit results, use the pareto principle 80/20. Which 20% of the tasks that I can do that can bring 80% impact.
With this, thank you reading the SEO trends for 2021. All the best in your 2021 SEO endeavors! Believing this year will be a great year despite the pandemic.
PT SMARTIT MANTAP DIGITAL INDONESIA is a digital agency with SEO services and Google Ads PPC as part of its expertises. We have helped clients ranging from SMBs to enterprises. Our portfolio includes helping our clients getting more qualified organic traffic and targeted PPC users. If you need a consultation about your SEO strategy, please do not hesitate to contact us.