- Google will use more and more signals to determine ranking, and it will get harder and harder for SEOs to completely understand what those signals are.
- Bing will continue to struggle in search, but with deep pockets will continue to be around for some time.
- Google will be forced to deal with shady negative search engine optimization techniques. The growth of negative SEO is continuing and that signifies a threat to its search quality and also to many businesses that thrive on search. Google will have to address it at some point as it’s a black hat intentional tactic of index/ranking manipulation.
- The search industry will become more personalized and user influenced. Search will continue to move beyond getting the exact details of on-page search engine optimization correct and further towards ensuring that web pages, products, services and content really meet a users’ needs. Remember to Optimize Your Website for Leads, Not Just SEO. Ask yourself if your website do a good job of generating demand, leads and sales?
- To state the obvious, you can expect more of the same in that Google will continue to heavily penalize websites manually and algorithmically in order to preserve its search quality while possibly becoming stricter each year. Google may also add to its spam a hit list. For example, Google added a new public enemy in 2014: guest blogging for links. Guest blogging solely for the benefit of backlinks is officially a BIG no no according to Google’s head of the Webspam team, Matt Cutts’s.
- With more than 6.8 billion mobile devices, in hand mobile search will soon surpass desktop searches according to Google. For the same reason, your mobile site performance already affects your SEO rankings and mobile SEO will continue to grow. Therefore, mobile responsive design will continue to drive website design. If you’re looking to see where Google is headed, look no further than mobile. Brands will continue to move towards lean and fast websites with great internal structure that’s search engine friendly.
- Link earning will unseat SEO link building. Because links are still a strong signal for search engines it’s still important to leverage your content in order to produce links from authoritative websites. The quality of backlinks is far more important than the quantity. With that being said, SEOs will also need to value other means of creating traffic and audience around a site. Focus on making your website useful, findable and shareable.
- The potential for heavier emphasis on social media / social signals. Social media has taken over the world and while individual social media networks may come and go, social media itself is here to stay. Search engines are likely to become better at scanning social data available through social media and use the information on how to rank websites.
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