The rules for effective SEO has shifted many times over the past few years. What were once ‘tools of the trade’ are no longer even necessary. Before it was all about stuffing keywords into your title, content, meta data, etc. Now for SEO in 2016 it is a failure not to put your investments into mobile, unique content and user experience.
Search engines algorithms are a lot smarter and you can no longer expect to know exactly how your pages are going to show up or what words they are showing up for. According to a August 2015 study by Moz, the most important factors for the biggest SEO impact this year will be mobile-friendliness, each page’s perceived value, usage data (ex. dwell time), readability and design. The study also reported that paid links and anchor text are no longer as important.
How to maximize your SEO content development in 2016.
1. Relevant & Unique Content
Getting clicks to your website used to be the most important factor. Now search engines are watching how users are interacting with your site once there. Are they hitting the return button and clicking on a new website or are they finding what they are looking for and navigating through the site. Basically it is taking the click to a new level. Are you satisfying the user with relevant content or are you only offering fluff headlines that offer nothing when you get to the page?
2. Long tail keywords
Search engines have begun to understand a lot more about the meaning behind what people are saying. If you have a specific word that you are going for such as ‘coffee’, you can’t just mention that one word a bunch of times in your copy and expect that to do the trick. Other things would be important in a ‘best coffee shop’ conversation such as the atmosphere and ambience of the coffee shop, the experience, the happenings, etc.
The majority of keywords are now between three and five words and search engines are figuring out that if you type coffee into the search bar you are going to get a very wide array of links. But if you type in DIY modern coffee tables, black coffee benefits or best coffee shop in columbus, ga you get a much more narrowed list.
3. User experience
Right now Google’s algorithm developers are putting so much time into making sure when you search for something you get the results you want in the very first few search results. This is equal to a good experience. It is no longer about trying to ‘trick’ the algorithms into thinking you have the right content with keyword stuffing. Your content needs to be original, have unique images, videos or long-form text.
**Tip: Articles should be between 1,000 to 1,500 words to perform better in search engines.
Break up the content with header and sub-head tags, bullet points and images.
4. Mobile matters
People are consuming more content on their phones than ever before. You need to be able to do anything and everything on your phone. If your website is not optimized for mobile, it will drop your rankings on desktop as well because your site is not up to code.