Search engine optimization has become the number one area of focus across every type of business and industry this last year. As the most cost-effective way for people to discover products and services, SEO has also evolved to be a critical strategic channel that feeds insights into consumer behavior and customer intent.
Here are some key SEO trends to watch for in 2022:
Keep Pace with Search Updates, Best Practices, And Search Engine Algorithms
For enterprise SEO marketers, updates and algorithmic change is a double-edged sword that includes:
- Reacting, fixing, and optimizing – taking action.
- Translating the business impact to the organization.
The best way to stay ahead of changes is to ensure a proactive content and technical SEO approach with Core Web Vitals. Focus on:
- Content creation. Focus on pages and category content (especially for e-commerce sites).
- The health and structure of your website, including navigation and architecture.
- Pages and load speed for mobile and desktop.
- Technology, real-time insights, and automation.
Increase in The Adoption of Automation for SEO
According to a PWC survey, 52% (from a survey base of 1000) of organizations have accelerated the adoption of AI. In addition, the automation of routine tasks was ‘ranked’ in the top 5 applications.
In 2022, look toward automation to help at three levels:
Level 1: Monitoring and detection
- Anomalies in SERPS results.
- Team reporting on rankings and traffic.
- Links and backlink profiles.
- SEO audits.
Level 2: Manual SEO
- Gathering data at a regular cadence.
- Advanced keyword intent research.
- Link sourcing.
- Content optimization.
Level 3: Insights and automated action
- Analysis of larger data sets in real-time.
- Content and multiple (large) site audits.
- Website error fixes and linking.
- Decision-making in real-time.
Demis Hassabis, CEO of DeepMind, an AI startup acquired by Google, defines AI:
“We can teach machines to be like humans. We can give them the ability to see, hear, speak, move, and write. Those machines would be called AI if they could then teach themselves to get better at seeing, hearing, speaking, moving, and writing-without human involvement. That’s exactly where we stand with AI today. Thousands of AI tools exist that have the ability to see, hear, speak, move, and/or write, then get better at those things without being explicitly programmed to get better. A voice assistant like Alexa is a great example of this. But, with AI, Alexa can use machine learning algorithms to learn from data at scale, then improve at speed.”
The Increasing Importance of Data as Business Intelligence
SEO data collected and analyzed at scale can give marketers a much more extensive range of insights into the consumer. It can help can with the understanding of:
- Trending product interests.
- Needs and frustrations.
- Product preferences.
In 2022, marketers need to get better at showcasing value from business intelligence insights to drive business benefits across their organization. For example:
- Improving brand awareness.
- Providing product marketing feedback and insights for future launches.
- Building inbound and outbound lead generation campaigns.
- Providing sales teams on market trends.
- Fueling content and digital teams on intent and SERP/content types.
- Working with PR teams on media and article and link optimization.
Learn more about how to implement AI for your business!
Further Integration with Paid Search and Digital for SEO
Today, with over 80% of search traffic coming from SEO and PPC, there can be no conflict to:
- Utilize SEO insights to inform PPC
- Utilize PPC to fill immediate (short-term) gaps for high-value keywords and pages
- Boost local and mobile-first performance with SEO and PPC
- Share insights across both channels and with digital stakeholders
Next year, make sure SEO and PPC are tightly aligned to maximize visibility and discovery in the SERPs. This helps appeal to the specific needs of high-intent searchers and the personas that matter.
The Provision of Total Experiences and Services
In 2022, SEO management will involve a deeper focus on:
- Training and Certification of SEO, content, and digital across organizations.
- CEO, CMO, and SEO alignment on goals and outcomes.
- Technology and platform training and management.
- Evangelism of results, both internally and externally.
- Greater collaboration with IT and development.
SEO is one of the oldest and most valuable forms of digital marketing. As search algorithms have continuously become more intelligent and more contextual, marketers need to continue to provide an outstanding and meaningful user experience. The tips and tricks of strategizing the algorithm will constantly be changing but creating a solid consumer base and loyalty is here to stay.
This next year consumers will expect seamless online experiences, and SEOs will need to find new ways to move faster:
- Keeping on top of technical optimization and content quality, and cadence.
- Utilizing business intelligence at their disposal – across the whole enterprise.
- Focusing on the total user experience – across all parts of the customer journey.
- Embracing automation – to scale operations and improve efficiency.
Hopefully, all the above will help guide your SEO success in 2022! With the help of a team like ours, you can start the new year off on the right foot. You can also learn more about SEO and why it matters if a previous blog post or by visiting our YouTube Channel!