When it comes to google trends, strategies and predictions for SEO in 2018, I’m sure you’ve heard enough link building campaigns, keyword research tips, rankbrain optimization tactics and website optimization techniques.
But here’s the BIG QUESTION:
Do these things guarantee better Google SERP rankings?
I’m sure your answer is NO!
Here’s the deal:
If you’re serious about driving torrents of traffic to your site, boost your CTR, generate high quality links and rank high on Google SERPs, you’ll need to go over and beyond the usual stuff and do what experts do.
But, “What do experts do?”
Here’s your ANSWER:
Experts think DIFFERENTLY. They follow a very systematic approach to drive traffic and boost CTR in a bid to get better SERP rankings.
If you too wish to do what experts do to drive traffic, boost CTR and rank higher on Google SERPs, then you’re going love this article.
Here I will reveal three stupid simple strategies that are sure to disrupt the world of Google SEO in 2018.
So let’s get started. Shall we?
SEO Strategy #1: Go All-in With AMP (Or Get Left Behind)
You’ve probably already noticed:
Over the last few years, mobile usage has overpowered desktop usage.
Earlier this year:
Google started testing its ‘mobile-first index’. And Gary Illyes from Google revealed how page speed will be an essential part of Google’s Mobile First Index.
In our recent post – SEO in 2018 (Advanced Guide + Proven Tips), I predicted that page speed will soon become a ‘Google Ranking Factor’.
It seemed like I was screaming in the dark. But looks like Google heard me and brought me in the spotlight (Okay, it wasn’t me alone, other were hoping for it too).
But here’s the BIG NEWS:
Google made an announcement that ‘Page Speed’ is officially a ranking factor for mobile search rankings. Well, it is now important than ever for companies to optimize their mobile sites using AMP for faster speed.
Given all this:
It wouldn’t be an exaggeration to say that Accelerated Mobile Pages (AMP) project is likely to become a norm for businesses rather than exception in 2018 (and beyond).
AMP has a huge impact on search performance.
Bold claim? Definitely!
But stay with me.
I’ll explain it with an example:
A popular travel intermediary site, Wego was able to increase its SERP CTR by 25% and ad CTR by 63% using AMP.
Wego drives 70% traffic from mobile devices on both app and mobile site. But, its app took a longer time to download and install, especially in countries in Asian subcontinent with relatively slower internet speed. This made it difficult for Wego to connect with new customers and retain the older ones.
The team at Wego then decided to adopt AMP with a hypothesis that speedy page displays would attract better CTRs (click through rates). This worked in its favour.
With the implementation of AMP, Wego was able to optimize its mobile site’s speed by optimizing the page load time of its airline and airfare listing pages. After implementing AMP, Wego decreased the load time of its airline listing pages from 11.97 seconds to 3.47 seconds, and airfare listing pages from 12.34 seconds to 2.75 seconds.
Wego also achieved:
- 12% increase in organic traffic
- 26% increase in retargeted traffic
- 39% increase in conversion rate
It is easy to implement AMP in order to improve user performance.
But here’s the deal:
Not all content is suitable for AMP. In fact, content with dynamic and interactive elements aren’t too compatible with AMP.
You don’t need to implement AMP site-wide. Simply start with just some static pages and work your way to your popular pages.
SEO Strategy #2: Shift Your Focus to SCHEMA MARKUP
If you have been following SEO trends for 2018, you must have noticed:
Google is becoming more and more inclined towards structured data like Schema Markup.
Google ranks pages with Schema Markup above those without it, thereby boosting the SERP CTR for such pages.
And a higher SERP CTR means better SERP ranking. As a matter of fact, there is a very strong correlation between organic CTR and Google ranking.
Schema Markup has become immensely popular amongst online businesses.
As it turns out:
40% small businesses use schema markup in a bid to get more organic SERP CTRs.
And 38.7% of these businesses update their schema markup on a monthly basis.
Looking at the drift of search ecosystem towards for accurate and helpful resources, it wouldn’t be wrong to say that Schema Markups will become more and more popular in 2018 (and beyond).
You may not have thought about it, but you’ll need to embrace schema markups if you wish to dominate SEO in 2018…
Let me explain this with an example:
A popular Cosmetic Surgery Website, Cosmeticsurg.net was able to increase organic traffic to blogs by 200% and site-wide traffic by 75% by using schema markup.
After a detailed review, Cosmeticsurg found overlapping queries and pages. There were multiple pages that were competing for the same keyword. Then they added more detail about the two topics and linked the data on the web in Wikipedia, Wiktionary, Wikidata, American Society of Plastic Surgeons, etc.
As it turns out:
Implementation of Schema Markup increased the traffic to these blogs by 200%. Here’s the traffic for pages with specific structured data grew.
SEO Strategy #3: Get Ready for More Blog Commenting
Yet another major bet for SEO in 2018 is blog commenting.
Blog Commenting is a brilliant way to get a link back to your website and improve your SERP rankings.
In April 2016, Google’s Gary Illyes clarified (on Twitter) that a thriving community can boost SERP rankings.
As it turns out:
Google considers blog comments as a great source of user-generated content naturally thrusted with long-tail keyword queries.
In my experience:
Leaving meaningful and contextual comments on other websites (articles and blogs) is a powerful way to drive targeted traffic to your own website. A good comment linking back to your website is like a smart investment that grows with time.
By the way:
Blog commenting not only helps improve SERP rankings, it also helps build relationships with bloggers, eventually boosting your credibility and authority in the eyes of Google.
Here’s an example to show you how blog commenting helps:
ContentMarketer.io was able to drive more than 2,494 visitors and 513 new leads by blog commenting in just 20 hours.
In a bid to drive targeted traffic to the new website, Sujan Patel of WebProfits commented on blogs that published about content marketing tools.
Out of the submitted comments, some of the blogs were approved and published by the websites. And in just 20 hours, these blog comments drove more than 2,494 visits to the website.
If you too are planning to drive targeted traffic in 2018 (and beyond) using blog commenting, then you’ll need to be very careful.
Yeah! It’s true!
Here’s what Matt Cutts revealed about Blog Commenting to Searchenginewatch:
“If your primary link building strategy is to leave comments all over the web, to the degree that you have a huge fraction of your link portfolio comments, and no real people linking to you, then at some point that can be considered a link scheme. At a very high level we reserve the right to take action on any sort of deceptive or manipulative link schemes that we consider to be distorting your rankings.”
What should you do?
Start by looking for top search results for sites that match your niche. Check if the site allows comments and if links are allowed in the comments. Now, write relevant, high quality comment.
Over to You!
You just saw some of the most significant SEO strategies that guarantee a better Google SERP ranking in 2018 (and beyond).
If you enjoyed this article, I’d like to hear what you think. Leave your questions or thoughts right now.