Complete Guide on SEO for 2018

Be prepared for SEO strategies of 2018 from today itself. This ultimate guide will help you in improving your website ranking in proper ways. After all, this is an in-depth content which will cover almost every important factor to dominate Google's search result in 2018.

It seems that coming year will be an interesting year for SEO. As search engine keeps on improving its algorithm to provide quality content to the visitors, some ranking factor shifts down and some arise out of nowhere.

To be very specific this is not a prediction post but is a tested strategy that is currently working and will work even better in 2018.

SEO strategies of 2018

Foundation of SEO in 2018

Become Rank Brain Expert
Rise Of SERP Features
Mobile Index First
Go With Video
Google Voice Search
Make Amazing Content Link
Ambient: In depth content
Bonus SEO Tips
Explore Content

1. RankBrain And Machine Learning

Are you familiar with RankBrain? If "yes", then became an expert if "No" then,

Not to worry this guide will make you an expert in RankBrain. 

As Google has confirmed that RankBrain is the third most important metrics for the ranking factor, you must start optimizing your web page right now.

The question is:

How and why is it so important? Let's check it out...

...and boost your page rank.

Rank brain 2018

Google RankBrain: Simple yet Complete Explanation

RankBrain is a self-learning program (AI) that helps Google to improve their search result.   

We are in the world of AI and everything is getting smarter day by day so does the search engine. 

Google RankBrain simply measure how users are interacting with search results...   

...and rank them accordingly.   

For example, you have searched for "Best place for honeymoon". Google will display the content which is already ranked on the first page of search engine.

Dwell time explanationNow, If you click on the #1st result (what most people do) and found the content is Terrible you bounced back and then hit on the # 5th result and stayed there since you found the article is really amazing and actually worth reading.   

Now, What happened here?   

Two things, RankBrain noticed Two things:   

1. You have bounced back from the #1st result - it means the article is not up to the mark   

2. You stayed at #5 it means content is really worth reading   

Now, if RankBrain found the same thing happening back to back from others users also it will degrade the #1 and upgrade #5 at the top of the page. simple as that.   

So, it is very clear RankBrain focus on two main things.   

1. How long people spend on your page (Dwell time)   

2. The percentage of people that click on your result.    

What can be done here to boost page rank?

1. Start writing comprehensive, in-depth content   

2. Make your post appealing and start using powerful words   

Artificial intelligence and machine learning are already changing the way that search results are ranked.   

Now it's your turn to take some initiative to write a compelling post.

What is Dwell?

Dwell time is the actual length of time that a visitors spend on your page before returning to the SERPs (Search Engine Result Pages).

If you are spending more time on a particular page, you probably like the content on that page. And if more people feel the same way, Google will think Wooah... this page is rich in content...rank them up.

A recent study has found that average Dwell time for a top Google results is 3 min 10 sec.

Like I said earlier to improve Dwell time start writing In-Depth content (which I have explained later in this post) and start using Powerful words and add some emotions to your post, like:

⟩⟩ Here is the deal...

⟩⟩ what's the real story...

⟩⟩ That's not all…

⟩⟩ fantastic...

⟩⟩ Ultimate...

These words keep your visitors stick to your content and will automatically improve Dwell time.

2. SERP Features: The Next Big Thing For SEO In 2018

This is going to be deadly... 

Because SERP (Search Engine Result Page) features are stealing searchers attention and click from organic listing. According to Stone Temple Consulting almost, 30% of the Google search queries show Featured Snippets.

You must be wondering... Snippet Feature... What is this?

Well, A snippet is a type of rich answer in the search result, where an answer is pulled directly from your website and featured in a box above all the other results and the best part it will give a link back to your website.

In order to provide best results, Google's SERPs are changing rapidly. They have already changed dramatically in the past few years. And by the rate Google is making updates, you can expect big changes in 2018.

ctr expert

Why Snippet Feature Is So Important

If you want to get more traffic in 2018, you have to be serious about Snippet Feature. Why?

Because of the Search result like:

feature snippet 2018
Now tell me (and be truthful) on which result you will click? Obviously, the result is showing at the top of SERPs, highlighted in the snippet box. Right? Yes...

Why does this matter?

Well, if you look closer you will find the result is showing in the featured snippet is the same result which is at #4.

Woah.... Well, this is how snippet feature is going to steal the visitors from #1, #2 and #3 and provides more visitors to #4.

It tells that Google is now focusing on delivering the relevant result faster.  

How To Get Featured Snippets For Your Site?

These four simple steps will work effectively to get featured snippet for your website:

1. Provide a clear and direct answer to the question.

2. Offer value-added information beyond the direct answer.

3. Make it easy for your users to find the content.

4. Identify the simple question related to your niche and answer it.

Now its time to say Goodbye to keyword stuffing and start focusing on the content-rich post.

3. Be Prepared for Google Mobile-first Index

It's going to be a big change, but don't freak out, we still have time (little time) to work on mobile-first Index.

Gary Illyes, Google webmaster trends analyst have told that in the first quarter of 2018 mobile-first index will be rolled out.

This move makes sense. A recent study has confirmed that about 64% of web traffic is coming through mobile devices. People love to access the internet while they are on the go, which means local SEO is going to become even more popular. As a result, brands will face a big opportunity of marketing their business at a local context.

Google also advise switching your m-dot domain to responsive before the mobile-first index rollout.

So, what are you waiting for? Follow this 2 ultimate steps of MFI to improve google search results. 

Google mobile first index

What Should I do for Mobile-First Index: 2 Ultimate Steps

Step 1. Stop Hiding Your Content For Mobile Users

Yes, you read it right. Sometimes website owner shows less content or hides some features of the webpage on the mobile version of a website. You know what I mean? Here is an example:

hide content

Well, this practice (hiding features) is going to be really tough to rank your website once Google unveils mobile-first Index algorithm. Because hidden content is going to be ignored by Google which will impact your overall SEO strategies of 2018. So, figure out a way to make mobile content equivalent to your desktop content without removing any content and features.

Step 2. Migrate your m-dot site to responsive site

Google has announced they are not going to index m-dot; they will just annotate m-dot URL, but true indexing will not be done.

Wait wait...there is a catch, if you will migrate from m-dot to responsive design now, Google doesn't have to index anything it will just update its algo that your website is mobile-friendly because it is responsive and you are good to go.

However, if you are planning to update your website after the rollout, then Google will take a long time to index your site because Google will not only update the URL but also check the content of your page. In the worst scenario, you might get an error in indexing your website.

In short, start working on your website right now and make it responsive. 

By the way, what is a responsive website? The website which is consistent across desktop, smartphone or tablets are responsive websites.

For an example, if you visit this post from your smartphone you will find same useful content that you are getting through your desktop and vice versa.

How will you find if your website is mobile friendly?

Here is the recommended tool from Google which will analyze your website and let you know if your website is legit mobile friendly.

4. Go With Video or Get Left Behind

By now lots of SEO experts have realized that only building a large number of links will not help in ranking a website in the long terms. It is also about creating a high-quality in-depth content that will attract the visitors.

Making a video related to the content is one of the amazing factors to increase your website traffic dramatically. If used correctly, video can make a significant contribution to your overall SEO strategies in 2018.

If you are not creating video content, do it right now, online videos are exploding.

In fact, according to Google, online video will cover over 67% of online traffic by the end of 2018. No wonder why Facebook has dived into its own video sharing platform.

Video SEO in 2018

Start Making Content Related Video to improve SEO in 2018

YouTube is the ultimate choice to get more traffic from SEO in 2018. It is the second largest search engine and you can't simply ignore it. The best part, it's free and you can even monetize your video to get some revenue from YouTube itself..... So it is a win-win situation.

Like any other online platform, YouTube is growing really fast. More and more people are searching for content on YouTube and the amount of time that people spend on YouTube is 57% more as compared to last year. Keeping that in mind Google has started blending YouTube results in Google Image search.

Video sharing platforms are getting really big that is why Facebook has also dived into its own video sharing platform. If we talk about its popularity, Facebook is the biggest social sharing platform having 470 million visitors per day. Woah!! it's huge... Now you can imagine how much traffic you can bring to your website if you use these video sharing platform in proper ways as a 2018 SEO strategies.

If people want to see more video, make it easy for them

What do I mean? ahh... Start embedding Video into your blog post. Yeah, start doing it. Embedding video in your blog post not only makes your visitors more comfortable but also work effectively to boost your SEO in 2018 and improves your Dwell time.

5. Voice Search and Digital Assistance

Is voice search is going to play an important role in SEO strategies of 2018? Well have a look:

⟩⟩ Google reports that 55% of teens and 40% of adults use voice search every single day on Google app.

⟩⟩ 25% of Android searches in the USA is voice search.

⟩⟩ Andrew Ng, Chief Scientist at Baidu, has confirmed that by 2020 50% of all searches will be made through voice search.

As the search continues its migration to mobile devices and a larger percentage of those queries are initiated by voice, the range of virtual assistance such as Cortana, Siri, Amazon Alexa, Google now, Viv and Google home is growing really very fast.

This statistics reveals how important a voice search is. Take a long breathe and start optimizing your website as per the voice search.

pay attention to voice search

How I Optimize My Website for Voice Search

Voice search technology is going to change the way we communicate and process the information. People are getting more specific, seeking for quick and relevant answer. So Include a question (and answer) in your content.

While doing voice search people generally ask a question... a specific question.

Like:

⟩⟩ How will I improve my website ranking without using any paid SEO service?

⟩⟩ What is the future of SEO in 2018? Is it really going to change the marketing strategies of SEO?

⟩⟩ What SEO expert do?

In voice search world, keywords are no longer just a Keyword. People are getting more specific while searching for something. Your keyword strategy must be more conversational in nature. Start thinking about the type of questions people will ask if they want to search something. Once you have a list, start creating your content focus on those long tail keywords and believe me it will improve your website ranking very quickly.

Just in case if you are wondering how you will find the bunch of question people can think. Here is the great website you can go with. Just type the word and boom... you will get hundreds of question-related to the keyword.

As digital assistance is getting more accurate there is a great opportunity both for SEO and content, taking advantage of a growing market that grows the brand with a user in a unique but still relevant and useful way.

6. Make Relevant Content Link or Be Linkless

Link building is not going to disappear in 2018, but aiming for the link which is not relevant to your niche is not going to add value to your page authority.

Seo is all about quality content and quality links.

Quality content will automatically improve your website ranking. And without amazing content, you will never get backlinks. And without links, you will be drag down on the result page.

A successful SEO strategy in 2018 will move towards relationship building and help that will be beneficial for a longer term.

link building 2018

How I will Get Relevant Backlinks

For years, links have been the trust signal for the search engines. People used to spend more time in building the backlinks - moreover, they used to manipulate the search algorithm.

But time has been changed, search engines are getting more intelligent and can easily track down if the backlinks are relevant or not.

So, it is highly recommended to go with the relevant website. This doesn't always mean the best backlink comes from the most popular sites, but it's still crucial to seek coverage from the sites that are relevant to your industry.

For an example, getting 5 high-quality backlinks from the relevant website is way better than getting 100's of backlink from the irrelevant website.

Referral traffic still gives you organic visit to your website and will help you in improving your website ranking in 2018, so start thinking of link building as a long-term process.

In fact, Google has confirmed that content and links are their top 2 ranking factor (source). So, start seeking for high-quality backlinks to improve your website ranking. 

7. Time For Ambient - In Depth Content

Google has updated their algorithm and will rank the page that covers an entire topic in-depth.

In old days, Google used to analyze your page to see how many times you have used the specific keywords and according to keyword stuffing, your page was getting ranked.

But now they are not only looking for content but also focusing on context. Because Google wants to provide the one-stop destination for their users.

In-fact people want to get every relevant answer from the same post instead of searching here and there. 

In depth content

How To Write Comprehensive, In-Depth Content

Start writing a long post (at least 2000 words) and try to cover every topic which is relevant to the content. That way you can provide everything a Google searchers need to know about that topic.

If you are wondering how you will find the bunch of question people can think. Here is the great website you can go with. Just type the word and boom... you will get hundreds of question-related to the keyword. Choose some of them and embed in your post.

Add LSI Keywords to Your Content 

In order to make more sophisticated and useful search engine, Google has now made some updation in its algorithm. That is why they are focusing on LSI keywords.

LSI keyword is a phrase or word that are similar to your main keyword. For example, you have published an article related fashion trends then LSI keywords can be:

⟩⟩ Teens

⟩⟩ Women

⟩⟩ New fashion 

⟩⟩ Latest fashion

You must be getting curious about how to find LSI keyword for your niche? So here is the answer choose either of them

1. LSI Graph, a free tool. You just need to enter the target keyword and you will be loaded with perfect LSI keywords for your niche.

how to use LSI keyword

2. Use Google search result itself. Yes, Google suggestions. You probably have noticed that whenever you search for something Google will suggest some related post at the bottom of the search result. like this:

keyword planner for fashion trends

The words in bold or even the entire phrase can be used as an LSI keyword for your article. Start using those suggestion and you will be amazed by the result. 

And when the search engine sees these LSI keywords on your page they think: "Perfect...!!" This page is full of relevant content and people will love to read it and they will rank your page at the top.

BONUS TIPS

Evergreen Tips For SEO in 2018

Bonus SEO tips

⟩⟩ Create Visual Content - Images Speaks a Lot

⟩⟩ Improve Your Website Loading Speed

⟩⟩ Provide a Sitemap - Yes, It Helps a Lot

 

⟩⟩ Make User-Friendly URL - Easy to Read

⟩⟩ NewsLetter Strategies - Don't Spam

⟩⟩ Reply to Visitors In your Comment Section

 


Now This Post Is Yours

message for elegant espace

This is how I have optimized my website for SEO in 2018.

And I am pretty sure you would have also decided to start optimizing your beautiful website. Comment below which step you are going to implement first? Will It be:

Featured snippet

Mobile First Index Or it is going to be Comprehensive, In-Depth Content

Let me know by leaving a quick comment right below right now.

Liked this guide?... Don't forget to share...!!
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8 Comments

  1. Hello, Pragati

    Your topic 7 Game-Changing SEO Strategies of 2018 is just awesome. I really enjoyed your post it’s up to the point 🙂

  2. I have spent a lot of time compiling SEO information and this by far is the best page I have found. It is to the point and written in a way that even beginners can understand so I appreciate that. As someone who is trying to network and grow a business online, many of the things mentioned here are imperative for success!

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