You can’t blame SEO specialists for wanting an especially cozy and relaxing Christmas. 2013 has been a pretty hectic year, with three major initiatives from Google to contend with, a move away from keyword data and the rise of the mobile surfer. But before we begin gleefully anticipating a hot toddy by the fire and a tasty Turkey dinner, let’s have a quick think about what Santa might be bringing our way for 2014. Will it be a naughty or nice SEO surprise?
Whilst we are a long way from saying that SEO is over, there are certainly more major shifts which we will need to deal with in 2014 – the ghost of SEO present will haunt anyone keen to get their site up and running. Fear not, however. Online presence counts for more than ever before and the market is competitive, so your company’s potential ROI is increased. The key will be to second-guess What Google Did Next, and respond with the same terrifying precision we have come to expect from these laser-cyber-humanoids sitting out there on the Death Star or Silicon Valley or wherever they are (did you know they are now operating life-size robots?!).
Here are a few SEO strategy ideas which may be applicable in a brave new 2014:
- Link quality and content quality still matter, so periodically remove inbound links that are not natural and invest in good content to keep Panda and Penguin happy.
- Google will favour companies who have a strong content marketing strategy. Whilst we’re on the subject, Hummingbird illustrates a shift towards semantic search and as such this too should be reflected in the type of content you use.
- Social media is going to be more and more important, so your business must be active on a range of networks. It’s time to take social media seriously, folks, because Google is going to rely more and more on social signals as a sign of human approval of good content.
- Google+ is the way forward. It will improve your SEO presence, as linking your content to your Google+ account will strengthen your Author Rank and will affect the SERPs.
- Mobile SEO is going to be all-important this year. So, you should plan for the properties you wish to rank to firstly be optimised for mobile devices, before computers. Yes, this sounds rather revolutionary!
- Keyword data is still available via PPC and as such you may choose to dedicate part of your SEO budget to PPC. However, we may see the launch of a Google product which allows access to this information, for a price, in the coming year.
This past year has been highly significant in terms of SEO. It seems that SEO strategies in 2014 will build on these developments, with a continued focus on white-hat tactics. By ensuring quality content and mobile optimisation, by embracing social media and Google+, you should be on your way to SEO success in the year to come.