The ‘quality of content’ will be Google’s biggest priority in search during the next 12 months, according to a new study of SEO specialists and digital marketing experts by Best SEO Companies.
Almost 500 professionals were asked their opinions about the SEO tactics that will be front and centre in 2020 and beyond and their forecasts for what areas Google will focus on as it continues to optimise its algorithms with small changes and broad core updates.
The study found that SEO was the single most crucial and interchangeable hard skill for marketers and the latest survey shows that experts are almost unanimous in the belief that SEO will be more important in the coming years.
Respondents admitted that the fast-changing and ever-evolving search landscape will also require the implementation of new tactics.
When asked about specific trends that will come to the fore during the next five years, AI optimisation came out on top with 31.3%, ahead of mobile optimisation (23.6%) and secure HTTP (19.4%).
A few other strategies that SEOs expect to employ include targeting featured snippets (19.0%), content length optimisation (17.9%) and updating old content (12.5%).
Content was a running theme throughout the survey. Google has been rolling out regular updates to its algorithm in recent months and 46.2% say that the search giant will focus on ‘quality of content’ most of all.
Google’s recent BERT update, which promises to improve how search analyses the context of phrases and words, offers a glimpse into the signals that could be weighted more heavily moving forward.
Respondents also expect social shares (44.8%), accessibility (42.5%) and mobile friendliness (41.3%) to be a core part of search updates.
Finally, when asked what they need to do to stay current, SEOs said that reading news and blogs and diversifying skills was crucial.