In 2018, we saw exciting changes and innovations within the global marketing sector and it looks like 2019 is poised to be even more revolutionary. From focusing more on building strong, personable, local relationships to welcoming new technological developments, there are plenty of things to be excited about for the next 12 months in the wonderful world of marketing.
Let’s see what a few SEO experts have to say about the coming year.
First things first: 2019 is all about results
At its heart, SEO is about results. But how you measure those results and share them with your customers is taking precedence this year. Matt Holovoch of Colorado SEO design says it best:
“As a professional, it is important to measure your clients’ results,” says Holovach. “These results are important not only for your client but also for the SEO professional. Moving forward, use your experience and previous results when crafting a plan for your clients.”
Jack Shepler, founder and chief strategist at Ayokay, adds that results for SEO companies don’t always strictly mean technical successes, either. In fact, he predicts 2019 will be the year of customer-based success.
“The most effective SEO strategy in 2019 is to focus on the end user,” says Shepler. “No amount of backlinks or technical adjustments matter to search engines as much as delivering what the user is looking for. Focus on the visitor’s perspective and you will soar.”
Conversion rate optimization
“I believe in 2019 conversion rate optimization for articles/pages will become more prevalent and complement the continuation of strong on-page optimization with a focus still on good high authority backlinks (guest posts or mentions) to your articles/pages,” says Justin Herring, of YEAH! Local.
As the industry emphasizes the importance of conversion rate optimization, it’s important that both small and large organizations alike utilize the right equipment and technology in order to achieve quality results.
“Everything about digital is going to get more granular,” adds Vin Jawa, of Sunny Landing Pages. “Just like user analytics on your landing pages! Make sure you have the right tools in place.”
Jim Milan, an expert Chicago SEO consultant, believes that identifying and eliminating weak web pages is a key component in this area. He adds that this is an especially important tactic for large sites:
“The old saying is true. In many cases, less is more,” says Milan. “For large E-commerce sites with many pages, one of the most effective SEO strategies available is culling low-quality, poor-performing content. In 2019, it will be essential for webmasters of these types of sites to consistently perform content audits to identify pages that are receiving little to no traffic and to deindex them from search engines so that stronger pages on the site can prevail and rise in rankings. Rather than having many weak pages targeting the same keyword or phrase, E-commerce sites should have one well-optimized page that targets that keyword or phrase.”
Authenticity matters now more than ever
Measuring and reporting results to customers is one thing. Reporting these numbers and taking steps to make sure your clients know you care is another. And this year, authenticity matters. What are you doing to let your customers know you care about their unique campaign?
“We all read the gurus and prognosticators in the industry and I feel sometimes group think starts to take over,” adds Holovach. “Remember, it is OK to forge your own way, try new things and use your brain to figure out the best way forward for your clients. Who knows, you might be the next best guru and you didn’t even know it.”
Your website is your best digital marketing tool
Whether you’re a company of five people or 500, the base of your business is still digital marketing. As such, your company site is your greatest marketing tool. While that’s not necessarily a new insight, Bartosz Goralewicz, co-founder and head of SEO of Elephate, offers some excellent tips to get the most out of your site in 2019:
“While there are no universal SEO strategies, there are some things that you always need to keep an eye on: Crawling and Indexing Efficiency,” says Goralewicz. “If your website is built with a modern framework, you will need to monitor and optimize the crawling and indexing in detail. You should always know what was indexed and when.”
Goralewicz also stresses the importance of both mobile and technical website optimization:
“Build and optimize your mobile website as if it were your primary version. Users should experience loading as fast as possible. Google uses the Chrome User Experience Report to see if your users are happy with how fast your website loads,” Goralewicz says of mobile optimization.
“With new technologies in development, it’s easy to lose sight of our SEO efforts,” adds Goralewicz on other technical optimization. “Your website must look incredible, behave great, and be efficient. You will need to polish your skills in communicating with developers in order to speak their language to best improve your website.”
Monitoring data and reviewing solicitation
“The most useful local SEO strategies will continue to be review monitoring and proper review solicitation,” says Jason Brown, of Review Fraud. “Consumers are performing better research and looking at more reviews. If you lose consumer trust, no amount of SEO will correct it. If a user has a bad experience, they will not only leave you a bad review, but they will mention how your reviews can’t be real, thus calling all of your reviews into question. Yelp and Facebook are actively battling to be the most trusted review website and Google will follow suit.”
As 2019 is officially underway, it’s time to execute your new plan for the coming 12 months. Keep in mind that a lot can change in a year, especially when digital marketing is involved. But with advice from the experts, you should be ready to scroll with the punches.