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Top SEO Trends In 2018

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Online visibility is a crucial component to any businesses strategy, however the digital environment is in a constant state of change so it’s paramount to stay up to date with these changes to make sure your online presence is optimised. Google releases between 500 and 600 updates each year, with most of them merely fine-tuning their secretive search ranking algorithm. With Google being such a dynamic force in today’s digital world, Search Engine Optimisation (SEO) has become increasingly important for companies to enhance their website traffic, customer engagement, and ultimately their earnings.

User behaviour is evolving rapidly with new technology, so Google must monitor these changes and improve their search algorithm respectively to ensure the user experience is as smooth as possible. If a website is going to shine online, they too must stay on top of the changing trends in SEO. Actually, using outdated SEO methods can trigger penalties that decrease a website’s search engine results page (SERP) listings, so here we’ll uncover the top SEO trends to keep in mind for your website in 2018.

Voice Search

A lot of users are now preferring to use voice searches rather than customary keyboard searches, so this will naturally be a top SEO trend in 2018. Voice searches are much faster and more convenient, which is why it isn’t surprising that 1 in 5 online searches originate from voice queries. If the current growth in voice searches continues at the same rate, roughly 50% of all online searches will be conducted via speech by the year 2020!

What this suggests for websites is that they should start including more long-tailed keywords into their SEO strategy, particularly those with a natural conversational tone. For instance, if a website has a keyword phrase such as “best Sydney restaurants”, it could also be followed with a phrase such as “Where are the best Sydney restaurants near me?”

Link Building

Link building has always been a valued tool for SEO, and this will continue to be a vital component in calculating SERP listings in 2018. Creating valuable links to trustworthy websites is still the most convenient way for Google to determine if a website is trusted, so adding value through quality links that helps you build an authority in your target niche is an outstanding strategy.

Having said this, the trend towards link building is now more long-term, so having links from sites pertinent to your industry and referral traffic will be very worthwhile in the near future.

Mobile Optimisation

Since 2015, online searches through mobile devices has surpassed that from desktops, so Google has made it clear that websites that are optimised for mobile devices will be ranked higher in SERP listings.

The reason that mobile optimisation is a top SEO trend for 2018 is because Google has stated that they are experimenting with mobile-first indexing, which clearly denotes that mobile optimisation will be prioritised in the forthcoming year. If your website hasn’t already been optimised for mobile devices, now is unquestionably the time to start!

Accelerated Mobile Pages

Website loading speeds play a fundamental role in SERP listings, and Google’s search results algorithm will certainly favour those with quicker speeds. As a matter of fact, Google has crafted an open source project that helps websites to load pages faster on mobile devices. The project named ‘Accelerated Mobile Pages’ (AMP) enables individual web pages to load 4 times faster than standard pages, and uses only 10% of the data in doing so!

While AMP is not directly affecting SERP listings yet, it will influence other areas closely related to Google’s search results algorithm, such as bounce rate and session duration of users. AMP can be simply installed into HTML or JavaScript code, but plugins will be needed for content management systems such as Drupal and WordPress.

How To Work On SEO For Your Website in 2018

While conventional SEO techniques like link building will still be helpful in 2018, there are other manifesting trends that Google is focussing on in the future which may substantially alter the practice of SEO. It’s clear that SEO is already transforming to stay on top of changes in user behaviour and to maximise the overall user experience. By understanding the latest SEO trends and implementing strategies now, your website will be optimised and ready to obtain targeted clients from higher SERP listings.

If you have any inquiries or concerns about how you can optimise your website to conform with the latest SEO trends, get in contact with Internet Marketing Experts Bundaberg on 1300 595 013, or visit their website for more details: http://internetmarketingexpertsbundaberg.com.au

 

Social Media Marketing – Say More On Twitter

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The moment has finally come where Twitter users can voice their dissatisfaction with the 140 character limit in more detail, now that Twitter has formally confirmed that they have widened the character limit to 280 per Tweet!

The social networking company, which was introduced in 2006, grew dramatically to become one of the most praised social media platforms around the world, however recent declines in growth induced the social media giant to make some revisions. Twitter differentiates itself from other social media networks with its ‘microblogging’ feature, which is significantly dissimilar to comparable social media platforms like Facebook and Google Plus. Twitter has just over 330 million users that send roughly 6,000 Tweets per second.

Despite the 140 character limit that strongly defined the social networking service, Twitter stated on November 7 that they want every user around the world to ‘easily’ express themselves on Twitter. After running a variety of tests over the past few months, Twitter decided that they wanted to broaden the character limit, but only where necessary. Countries like Japan, China, and South Korea will stay at the 140 character limit, simply because there’s no need for an increase, as sending messages in these languages can be communicated in a short amount of characters. Languages like English on the other hand, suffer from squeezed Tweets with 9% of English Tweets hitting the earlier 140 character limit.

So, why the change?

After running an assortment of tests to particular users, Twitter gained valuable results and deemed the 240 character limit would be helpful for many users. Given that 9% of English users were hitting the 140 character mark, many would need to spend time modifying their Tweets to make sure they didn’t have to send multiple messages. Also, users would now have the ability to effortlessly fit their opinions into a single Tweet, so they could say what was on their mind and send them faster than before.

The question is, what impact will this have for digital marketers and SEO professionals? Here are a few changes that they can expect to see.

Increased engagement

Since Twitter extended the character limit, users have enjoyed a higher level of responses which resulted in more followers. Certainly, this has been a step in the right direction, as there has been a reported higher satisfaction rate from content producers in conjunction with more Likes, Retweets, and Mentions.

Improved user experience for followers.

The broadened character limit means that users will have reduced threads of conversations, considering that they can fit more information into a single message. Users with long threads of conversations revealed that it can at times be challenging to follow and respond to. Additionally, brands are enjoying the longer Tweets as it allows them to fit more comprehensive information into a single Tweet which generates higher engagement rates.

Increases customer communication

With the increase of businesses using social media as a channel to resolve customer service issues, customers can now communicate a problem in more detail on Twitter which is beneficial for both the customer and the business, as communication is dramatically enriched. Previously, many users would have resorted to other platforms like Facebook to report customer service issues since the character limit was too restraining.

More Creativity

Longer Tweets means that firms can amplify the creativity of their communication with their target market through storytelling, Q&A’s, and more engaging Twitter Chats. Businesses would normally have to use other social media platforms if they needed to get creative, however brands can now effectively use longer text to their advantage by connecting with their audience on a more personal level.

Although some users have suggested that the increase in character limit by Twitter makes them more comparable to other social media sites, the vast majority of users seem to be very satisfied with their latest update. Nothing is concrete in social media, as making changes to stay up to date with shifting user behaviour is critical for survival. For the time being though, both users and marketing specialists seem to have emerged the winner!

If you require any suggestions about how your firm can leverage the increased character limit to your advantage on Twitter, simply connect with Internet Marketing Experts Bundaberg by phoning 1300 595 013, or alternatively visit their website for more information: http://internetmarketingexpertsbundaberg.com.au

An Overview Of SSL Changes – What It Means For Your Website

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In today’s ever-changing online world, it’s pivotal that companies stay up to date with Google’s best practices to ensure they continue being competitive in their respective online markets. With Google being the most powerful and influential company on the internet, it’s key for them to keep up with all the threats and opportunities that the internet generates. For this reason, Google releases a multitude of updates yearly: new features, bug fixes, and the majority pertaining to the very secretive Google search ranking algorithm.

What is necessary though, is that all online suppliers that use Google-related services (literally every online company), recognise significant changes that may bear upon their SEO, performance, and ultimately their bottom-line. The internet is in a constant state of change, so online firms have to be flexible and adjust to new Google updates as soon as possible to make sure they aren’t negatively influenced by these new releases.

The largest Google update that has recently affected online businesses relates to Google Chrome v62, which was released in October of this year. The Google Chrome web browser is used by virtually half of all online users, so it’s exceedingly important that online businesses incorporate the applicable changes as quickly as possible if they intend to reduce any unfavourable outcomes.

What has changed in Google Chrome v62?

In the Google Chrome v62 update, Google has reshaped the way in which it marks non-secured (HTTP) pages. If a non-secured (HTTP) page stores passwords and bank card information (which is stored in a plain text file), they are prone to phishing sites that can essentially steal this information from users that wrongly believe they are giving their personal information to an authorised business. The Google Chrome browser will begin marking any text input field and web address bar as ‘NOT SECURE’ for HTTP pages.

This change will visibly have a bearing on millions of websites all around the world. Before the change, many non-secured websites weren’t affected by phishing attacks simply because they didn’t have a public-facing member login, and utilised PayPal or other offsite payment processors to accept online payments. Now, however, all websites will need to start securing their web pages because users will become worried of succumbing to malicious attacks if they input their personal information into fields marked boldly as ‘NOT SECURE’.

How to make web pages secure?

For online firms that want to secure their formerly non-secured (HTTP) web pages, they must encrypt the information being distributed between their clients and their web server by incorporating an SSL certificate. Google are clearly pushing for a more secure internet than ever before, and they’ve chosen SSL encryption as a vehicle to do this. For website owners who wish to enable HTTPS on their web servers, here is a useful guide: https://developers.google.com/web/fundamentals/security/encrypt-in-transit/enable-https?hl=en. The following link is an additional guide on how to avoid the ‘NOT SECURE’ warning in Google Chrome which is aimed at web developers: https://developers.google.com/web/updates/2016/10/avoid-not-secure-warn.

What this means for online businesses?

The recent Google update denotes that HTTPS and SSL encryption will become the norm across all web pages on the internet. Sooner or later, each online firm will need to secure their web pages using SSL encryption whether they like it or not, or users will simply choose a competitor that does.

What this also suggests is that not all websites using SSL encryption should be trusted, and there will be a significant increase in phishing sites using HTTPS also. Phishing sites can simply use counterfeit SSL certificates to circumvent the ‘NOT SECURE’ warning by Google Chrome and make their websites appear genuine. This will make the distinction between phishing sites and real websites more complicated than ever. Online firms that use an Extended Validation Certificate (EV SSL) will be the most trusted websites on the web considering that it will be incredibly difficult for phishing sites to emulate the authenticity that EV SSL provides.

Making all websites use SSL certificates to prove their authenticity will only increase the amount of phishing sites that do the same. At the end of the day, however, SSL encryption will at some point become mandatory, so if you need any assistance in securing your website with SSL encryption, speak to the digital specialists at Internet Marketing Experts Bundaberg by phoning 1300 595 013, or visit their website for additional information: http://internetmarketingexpertsbundaberg.com.au