The Three Pillars of Proper SEO in 2020
Search engine optimization remains just as viable as ever, but the nature of how audiences perceive and retrieve content via search engines continues to change rapidly. As little as a decade ago, the vast majority of content was fetched through a relatively narrow set of devices – predominantly desktop and laptop computers – but times have certainly changed.
It is important to know these differences because the SEO experience for brands and the search experience for users can be fundamentally different depending on the device(s) of the users. As such, understanding that SEO is no longer one major set of efforts is crucial to long-term success.
Let’s review the three main pillars of proper SEO in 2020 and outline how and why targeting each of them is vital.
Once the cornerstone of SEO, desktop search has went being the near-unanimous form of search usage to a minority share in just one decade. While many people still use traditional computers to fetch information when at home, the combination of newer technologies make it easy for people to find what they need while on the go. Despite this, pinging search engines via standard devices requires optimization all the same.
While the share of search traffic from these devices continues to decline with each passing year, it is still a sizable enough segment of traffic (30-40%, depending on niche) to require optimizations that focus on it. Until a few years ago, the “default” search engine result page for a given query was synonymous with desktop searches; as such, optimizing for a “standard” browsing experience from a few years ago shouldn’t feel foreign to most.
The most rapidly-growing segment of search engine use in terms of percentage growth, voice searches are an increasingly important segment of SEO. Most voice searches are performed from mobile devices, but unlike the standard text-based queries, voice search results can be a bit more confusing in terms of optimization.
Some recommendations for voice search optimization include using question-based keywords and phrases, focusing on conversational content and ensuring fast loading times for your website are paramount in on-site optimization concerns.
The holy grail of SEO these days, mobile searches comprise a majority of search traffic. Many brands have pivoted completely away from desktop-based SEO to focus on this pillar of the art; while we don’t recommend abandoning desktop SEO, it does illustrate just how crucial mobile optimization is for maximum performance.
Mobile SEO often relies upon focusing on local results, question-based queries and ensuring your website has a mobile-friendly design. When users seeking answers are pinging search engines from mobile devices, they require quick and concise information given they are often on the go. Search engines now put a premium on ensuring the browsing experience for mobile users is optimized for speed and efficiency.
Combined, brands that develop comprehensive SEO strategies for all three types of searches can dominate within their niches. Mobile searches are the future of SEO, but desktop searches still have a meaningful role to play – as do (largely) mobile-based voice searches. By developing approaches that optimize your content and marketing strategies for these three areas, you’ll never again have to worry about attracting qualified traffic via search.