Google’s algorithm is changing very often, so every marketer that works with SEO must pay attention to those updates in order to change their digital strategies or create new ones. It makes many companies ask themselves which SEO challenges they will find.
Recently, HubSpot has published a report about web traffic and analytics to know how websites are performing and what they must have to be on the top of search engine results.
Based on the report, we decided to write this article that introduces the main challenges in terms of SEO and how to face them. Are you ready?
What are the 6 SEO challenges that brands can anticipate this year?
Let’s take a look at the challenges every marketer must be aware of.
1. Staying on top of algorithm changes
Everytime an update comes, the way how Google sees every webpage changes, and this can be good or bad for your content production. In 2020, some websites dropped positions on SERP, as you can see in the example below.
A user reported to Google that he had the first position for years and, then, in one night, lost 3-4 positions.
So, the tip to avoid this kind of problem is being on top of your industry. Regardless which kinds of changes come, producing content about the main topics of your niche helps you to get along with the algorithm.
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2. Not ranking higher in search results
We are aware that SEO takes time to generate results, but to get them, we must do all our homework. It means every detail you have to do in terms of SEO counts to reach a good position on Google’s results.
Although some websites produce really great pieces of content, they forget to do things that look silly, but are extremely important, like:
- heading tags;
- alt text;
- keyword’s best practices;
- secondary keywords;
- author’s signature;
- internal and external backlinks;
- build the content based on a topic cluster strategy.
When these points (and many more) are missing, Google doesn’t see the content as good, and your ranking probably won’t be high, especially after an update that takes those points into consideration.
3. Using keywords incorrectly
A long time ago, in a search engine far far away, keywords were enough to take websites to Google’s first page, even if the content was poor. But, fortunately, these times have changed.
Nowadays, only keywords are not enough to boost your organic results, because the most important thing is not the keyword itself, but the user intent behind the keyword.
So, before writing a piece of content based on a keyword, use tools such as Keyword Planner or SemRush and make a Google search with the keyword to understand what people are really looking for. Take notes of all the topics that you find and use them in your article.
4. Writing compelling titles and meta descriptions
Everytime someone finds your website on Google’s search results, the next step is convincing them to click. That’s why your articles must have compelling titles and meta descriptions.
This Backlinko´s study says that emotional titles have better chances of generating visits and increasing your click-through-rate (CTR). So, our recommendation is focusing on the problem your public has and how your content will help to solve it.
Take a look at the example below.
This article about Copywriting written by us can be found in Google’s first page when you search for “copywriting”. The title suggests a problem solution and that generates over 800 visitors for us every month.
Further, if your content is really great, Google can give you a featured snippet position, also known as “position number zero” because it’s the very first one.
The example above shows our article about Artificial Intelligence Algorithms. Having it in the featured snippet position brought good results in terms of CTR, 11,8%, which is good, according to Backlinko.
5. Missing the mark on mobile
Nowadays, many people in the world use mobile devices to access the internet, much more so than on desktop. It means your website must be mobile friendly to attract and keep your visitors.
Furthermore, since July 2019, Google prioritizes mobile versions of web pages to index and rank them on SERP. Thus, if you know any website that doesn’t perform well on smartphones and tablets, probably it’s not ranking well on Google.
So, when you contract a developer or build a web page using a CMS such as WordPress, be sure the template is responsive and the loading speed is fast. Currently, as Google said, 53% of visits are abandoned if a mobile site takes longer than 3 seconds to load.
So, if your website is slow, certainly many people are leaving it to visit your competitor’s page. But, don’t worry. We have a solution that can help you out!
6. Leveraging video in search results
Content in video can be very useful considering what the user wants to find. For example: if you want to know how to play guitar, a video that shows how to do that is much better than a blog post.
Google knows it, that’s why the video above appears in the first position. Danielle Marshak, Google’s Product Manager, said that Google is working and improving on more ways to experiment videos as search results.
So, if you want your videos to be on SERP too, some best practices must be followed, like:
- adding chapters to your video: it makes Google understand your content as a whole and use different clips in search results;
- using the keyword in your content: the same way the keyword must be put in an article, the same goes to videos, because YouTube and Google recognize when you say it, which is good to improve your position in results;
- optimizing the title, description and your thumb image: the same SEO practice you use in blog posts through Yoast SEO must be done with your videos to get a better rank and a high CTR;
- adding tags: although they don’t help blogs’ SEO, they still work in terms of videos because they help your content to be found by users.
How to overcome or keep up with the current SEO challenges
Now that you know the 6 challenges every marketer needs to face in terms of SEO, let’s go to some tips you need to follow in your SEO strategy to keep having good results.
Focus on the buyer persona to produce your content
It can sound obvious, but we still need to remember it. It’s not unusual to see companies producing articles that have no connection with their buyer persona or the business itself. The consequence of this action: no results.
So, it doesn’t matter if a keyword has a high search volume or if a hot trend is happening, a content about it will have no meaning if it’s not connected to your buyer persona.
Make sure your SEO homework is done in all your articles
Inserting the keyword in your content, adding alt tags in your images, filling SEO title and meta-description… These are examples of tasks you need to follow in every blog post that you publish. But, have you done it with old posts too?
Take a look at previous articles and make sure your SEO homework is completed in all of them. You can start with posts with better rankings and that bring more traffic according to your Google Analytics.
Run a SEO audit to fix your issues
Finally, finding issues in websites and blogs is very common, especially if the number of published contents is huge. So, you must run a SEO audit to identify those problems (some examples: error 404, too many redirects or cannibalization) and fix them.
Tools such as Screaming Frog and SEMRush have really good SEO audit functions.
Now, you are ready to overcome the 6 main SEO challenges that we presented here in this article.
Last, but not least, remember to follow SEO trends every year to know how to prepare your strategy. By the way, do you know which trends we have for this year? Stick with us and check it out now!