Here’s How to effectively use SEO Optimization in 2022
In 2022, how can Google assist you in expanding your audience and enabling people to make informed judgments about your products and services?
There have been numerous speculations over the years concerning search engine optimization (SEO) losing its importance. Then the 2020 epidemic occurred, and businesses increased their SEO efforts. Google algorithm adjustments, as well as adherence to SEO recommended practises, became more vital than ever.
As a result, businesses went to their most precious asset – their websites – and reevaluated their SEO from head to toe. Now, over two years later, we’re looking back to see what has changed and what it means for SEO, as well as how to chart our course for the future.
Here’s all you need to know about leveraging search engine optimization in 2022.
The requirement for speed
SEO is becoming more technical than ever, with more and more SEOs specialised in technical SEO. While technical SEOs aren’t expected to be top-tier coders, they still need to understand how Google’s algorithm works. With the introduction of the Core Web Vitals, this has become even clearer.
Core Web Vitals, which were introduced in June 2021, have since been used as ranking indications. In a nutshell, they assess the speed, responsiveness, and visual stability of websites.
So, what’s the big deal here? The innovation is that Google took it a step farther and turned it into a ranking signal. In other words, if a website does not follow the required (or “best”) procedures, it will now receive a lower ranking score.
As part of the Page Experience Update, which was finished in August 2021, Core Web Vitals were put out, and websites are only now experiencing the effects and making educated decisions for the coming year.
The future will be mobile.
Without a mobile-friendly website, it’s quite improbable that a website would be able to rank at all, let alone profit, in 2022. Since 2016, SEOs have been aware of Google’s aim to prioritise mobile versions of websites in search (even on desktop!). Meanwhile, in 2019, mobile-friendly versions of all new websites began being indexed first by default.
Surprisingly, we are now in 2021, and not all websites have been switched to mobile-first indexing. As a result, the SEO community anticipates additional modifications in this area in 2022. In fact, according to January 2021 figures, about 90% of all internet users visited the web on their mobile devices. That’s a rather stunning piece of data to overlook.
Image and text searches are merged.
The days of tailoring your material with a few keywords and achieving a solid ranking position are long gone. Fortunately for creative marketers, Google’s AI breakthroughs continue to make things more fun. The most recent one is termed, rather unimaginatively, the Multitask Unified Model, or, more playfully, MUM.
MUM will be released as an update to Google Lens, combining images and text into a single search query. While Google Lens is already a game-changing software in its own right, MUM will make it much more dynamic. Users will be able to not only search for images with their phones, but also ask precise questions about them.
Behind this milestone is Google’s newest attempt to remain relevant, as other properties have taken over some of its fundamental functions.
Here are two business-relevant indicators and insights:
Image alt tag optimization is no longer optional. If you don’t optimise your photos, you risk losing valuable (and free) organic traffic from bottom-of-the-funnel leads.
Geotagging photos, particularly product images, has the ability to enhance the potential of local SEO. Because local searches account for roughly 46 percent of all Google searches, geotagging product photos means buyers in your area are more likely to discover your products not only if they searched for comparable or matching products, but also if they live in or near your area.
Voice search is (finally) available.
Did you know that by 2022, voice assistants will be used in around 55% of US households? Voice assistants have “infiltrated” our homes, our secure and private settings, which should be proof enough that voice search is becoming a reality. Furthermore, a research found that nearly 60% of internet users use voice search to find local businesses.
While voice search isn’t exactly breaking news, there are now additional reasons to assume it will become more essential in 2022. First, in 2019, Google released the BERT upgrade, which used a neural network-based technology for natural language processing (NLP) to improve comprehension of search intent rather than merely the meaning of search queries. MUM, which Google claims is “1,000 times more powerful than BERT,” is now available. It all speaks to Google’s algorithm being increasingly efficient at comprehending conversational language. These are clearly Google’s efforts to make voice search a reality.
What does this mean for companies? Simply companies should make their material more conversational. In practise, this means developing more FAQ and how-to content that is geared for genuine queries visitors ask in search, rather than a two-word search query.
Climbing to the summit
The zero-click search is one of the more intriguing search phenomena. If you’ve ever searched for something and Google returned a box at the top with an image and a written paragraph, or a few bullet points with an image or video, you’ve seen a featured snippet. The idea behind a highlighted snippet is to save consumers from having to navigate to a website to find the information they require. Google makes it easy for individuals to obtain information right away after conducting a search.
What is the significance of this? According to one survey, over half of all queries result in no clicks. Furthermore, if Google considers highlighted snippets to directly improve the searchers’ experience, optimising for zero-click searches means getting into Google’s good graces.
Marketers, particularly SEOs, can be divided into two broad categories: those who dread every Google algorithm update and those who do not.
Now I’ll let you come to your own decision about the following question: Which group is more likely to have engaged in black-hat SEO techniques?
Some SEOs are still unaware that there is no grey area here. SEO practises can be classified as either black or white. Whatever practise was once frowned upon is now almost likely punished.
In practise, what does this mean? It implies it’s finally time for some innovative brand storytelling and organic content marketing. SMBs have already been published in top-tier publications for free. That is a wonderful amount of link juice received for free from niche-relevant or nationally syndicated, prominent news sites. This is where we return to the fundamental premise of SEO content strategy: gaining backlinks in exchange for genuine value. In this example, it is deliberately marketed original research and data storytelling materials that acquire desired backlinks organically, and more organisations will undoubtedly use these strategies in 2022.
With Amazon and Shopify as competitors, Google has never been a serious e-commerce player, especially since Google Shopping has always been more of an ad platform than an online marketplace. That all changed in 2021, with the advent of Google’s Shopping Graph.
According to Google’s Bill Ready, the Shopping Graph was created with the intention of “supporting an open network of retailers and shoppers to help businesses get discovered and give people more options when they’re looking to buy.”
Businesses will have a new avenue to explore when promoting their products in 2022, thanks to Google’s increased emphasis on online shopping. The Shopping Graph, hailed as another AI milestone, works in real time and is said to be capable of understanding a continually changing set of product information, inventory data, sellers, brands, and reviews.
Everyone has access to it.
You want to reach as many people as possible, whether you run an internet business or utilise your website for lead generation. The Web Content Accessibility Guidelines (WCAG) come into play here. While it is not a ranking factor, optimising for online accessibility helps reach people that might otherwise be excluded.
By optimising for accessibility, you may have a concrete influence as a business owner. With AI solutions on the increase and expected to explode by 2022, why not ensure that a larger audience can make informed decisions about our products and services?