A decade ago, the key to SEO success focused heavily on choosing the right keywords. Today, SEO is much more complex.
SEO is constantly evolving, and marketers must grow with it. Here we look at some of the biggest challenges facing search engine optimisation professionals and do-it-yourselfers this year, to help you create a strategy for SEO that works in 2023.
Challenge Number One: Artificial Intelligence
Artificial intelligence (AI) and machine learning (ML) optimisation will be huge in 2023. AI (Artificial Intelligence) significantly impacts SEO (Search Engine Optimisation) in many ways.
Search engines like Google now use AI-powered algorithms to improve their search results. This means the search results are becoming more accurate and relevant to the user’s intent. SEO professionals must understand how these algorithms work and optimise their websites accordingly.
With the rise of voice search and smart assistants, search engines use NLP to understand the context and intent of a user’s search query. This means that SEO professionals must focus on creating more conversational content that reflects how people talk.
AI personalises search results based on a user’s search history, location, and other factors. SEO professionals must focus on creating content relevant to their target audience and considering the user’s preferences.
Website owners use AI-powered chatbots and virtual assistants to improve website user experience. These tools can answer common questions and provide personalised recommendations based on the user’s search history. SEO professionals must optimise their websites for these tools by including frequently asked questions and other relevant information.
Challenge Number Two: Privacy and Security
With the ongoing emphasis on privacy and security, search engines are changing to protect user data. This includes Google’s shift to secure search and SSL encryption. SEO professionals must stay up-to-date with these changes and ensure their websites comply.
Challenge Number Three: Mobile-first indexing
As more and more people use their mobile devices to search for information online, search engines prioritise mobile-friendly websites. SEO professionals must choose a responsive design. A responsive website design adjusts to fit any screen size, making navigating on desktop and mobile devices easy. This helps ensure that users can access your content on any device without zooming in or scrolling horizontally.
Large images and videos can slow page load times, negatively impacting user experience. For SEO, compress images and videos to reduce their file size and ensure that they load quickly on mobile devices.
Simplify the navigation menu by removing unnecessary links and making the remaining links easily accessible from a mobile device. Use dropdown menus to keep the navigation menu organised and easy to use on a small screen.
Choose fonts that are easy to read on a small screen. Avoid using small font sizes, and ensure enough contrast between the text and the background. Sans-serif fonts are generally easier to read on mobile devices than serif fonts.
For SEO, it is essential to test the website on multiple devices, including smartphones and tablets, to ensure it looks and functions correctly on each device.
Make sure that your website loads quickly on mobile devices. Use Google’s PageSpeed Insights tool to identify any issues that may be slowing down your website and address them.
Challenge Number Four: Content Quality
With the rise of AI-powered algorithms, search engines are emphasising content quality and relevance more.
AI-powered tools can generate content such as product descriptions, blog posts, and social media posts. While these tools can save time, SEO professionals must ensure the content is high-quality, correct, and relevant to their target audience and addresses the user’s intent.
Challenge Number Five: Local SEO
Local SEO optimises a website to improve its visibility in local search results. It involves optimising the website’s content, structure, and other factors to rank higher in search engine results for local queries. Local SEO will continue to be important for businesses with physical locations.
Local SEO is vital for businesses that serve customers in specific geographic areas. For example, if you own a restaurant, you want to ensure that your website appears at the top of the search results when someone searches for “best restaurants near me.”
To optimise a website for local SEO, some of the key strategies it is important you have a Google My Business profile to appear in Google’s Local Pack.
Include local keywords in the website’s content, such as the name of the city, state, or region the business is located in.
Optimise the website’s meta tags, such as the title and description, to include local keywords.
Ensure the website’s contact information is consistent and accurate across all directories and citations.
Get listed in local directories and review websites.
Create local content relevant to the target audience, such as blog posts about local events or attractions.
By implementing these strategies, businesses can improve their visibility in search results in 2023 and drive more targeted traffic to their website.