4 top SEO trends for 2017

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Is your SEO strategy for 2017 finalized? If not, then you might want to refine it to reflect some of the predicted top SEO trends for 2017.

You should already know the top SEO trends for 2017 from the renowned industry experts. Now we’re going to share a few more predictions to help you continue refining your SEO strategy for 2017.

It’s all about related keywords.

You don’t want to repeat a single keyword phrase throughout a post or page anymore. You want to optimize the post for your main keyword phrase by including it in the title, in the first paragraph, in the last paragraph, and in the header image’s filename, ALT text, and title text.

But from that point on, you want to get some related keywords in mind that you can spice throughout the article. Let’s say you’re writing about google technology. Using Rank Tracker, you can get insights into related keyword phrases and how they stack up against your chosen phrase using insights from a variety of resources beyond Google AdWords Keyword Planner.

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Or just use Google AdWords Keyword Planner, on the other hand, and possibly only get estimates based on your AdWords usage.

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Even if you do only have ranges, right off the bat, you can see that your keyword phrase, google technology, is getting an average of 1K – 10K monthly searches. But below that is a related, low competition, high search volume keyword phrase. Looking at this might make you re-evaluate your main keyword phrase or look for ways to have multiple main keyword phrases such as In Google News: Best Google Technology Update for Android Yet.

You can also see that there are 328 related keywords that you can download into an Excel spreadsheet or Google Sheet, sort, and have a field day with. Of course, not all will be related, and not all will have a high search volume. That’s why you will just pick and choose maybe the top five related keywords to use throughout your post. Five related keywords that have the next highest search volumes to your main keyword phrase.

The point? Be sure to research your keywords. You may think you have a good one, but a better one may be lurking around the corner.

It’s about mobile.

Mobile friendly and mobile speed. I can’t stress this enough. If you don’t have responsive web design, but use any common content management (WordPress, Joomla, Squarespace, etc.) or ecommerce solution (Shopify, Magento, etc.), then guess what?

There are tons of responsive designs out there for you. You can check with the platform’s main website, search for third party developers, or go to theme marketplaces like Themeforest to find a responsive theme or design for anything, even plain HTML websites.

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Of course, it’s not just your design, but your functionality too. Or your website’s speed at least. You can’t just install WordPress, a responsive theme, and 93 plugins (yes, it’s happened) and expect your website to run at its optimal pace.

That’s why it’s good to use tools like WebPageTest. It will tell you if your website is running at its best possible speed. Because let’s face it – what’s good for users is good for Google. And RankBrain could be learning what users like for Google’s algorithms.

What WebPageTest will tell you exactly what slows down your website load times so you can do things like re-analyze the need for specific plugins, optimize an image, fix a bad widget, or another task.

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A fast website with a beautiful design that works on every device is going to be a hit with both search engine bots and users alike.

It’s all about Artificial Search Intelligence aimed at human satisfaction.  

Want to get slapped by Google straight out of the gate? Get every link built to your company using generic keyword rich anchor text like auto insurance company and online colleges. It’s 2017 now, and as we mentioned before, there’s this whole new (but not so new anymore) part of Google’s algorithmic ranking system. Artificial intelligence is now a part of the rankings game and guess what? No one has it mastered.

Not even Google. First, their product naming conventions are confusing. Google Analytics or Analytics Solutions? Subfolder or subdomain? How do I choose when searching web analytics?

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And why are they on Page 2 of Google search results for web analytics software, along with a few well-known competitors. Sure, it’s a longer tail keyword phrase.

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But while it’s less volume, you know people looking for web analytics software are going to convert if you happen to offer web analytics.  

Which leads us to the most important thing you should focus on in SEO and any other marketing strategy. If you want it to be successful.

It’s about a conversion-focused approach.

While rankings are great, it’s time to stop focusing on them as an all or nothing way to determine if SEO is working. It’s not about being #1 for the keyword phrase with the highest search volume. It’s about being #1 (organically and/or paid) for the keyword phrase with the highest search volume that will get you conversions.

Think qualified traffic for leads. Sales. Not just any old garden variety of traffic, unless your income is based off of cost per impression advertisers buying space on your website.

Why is qualified traffic the best to generate? Because not only are they most likely to convert, but because they convert, they are the best to use for retargeting in Google AdWords, social media ads, and other remarketing campaigns.  

But why is a conversion-focused approach even more important? Because it’s going to up your quality across the board. It’s going to up your content, your meta titles, your descriptions, your images, your videos, your social posts, your interviews, your roundups. Everything you do in the name of marketing will be done with higher quality because your endgame isn’t to just get a link. Your endgame is to get a potential customer into your sales funnel.

You wouldn’t do that with a crappy pitch in person, so you likely wouldn’t do it with crappy content online either! Or shouldn’t, at least.

In conclusion

Keep in mind the basics. Stay in compliance with Google Webmaster Guidelines and keep an eye on your website’s health in search via Google Analytics and Google Search Console. Find the best keyword phrase and related keyword phrases for your top pages, followed by your top posts, and every piece of content you create from here on out and optimize for those keywords.

Don’t assume you’ve succeeded – use Google Analytics Goals to see what Landing Pages ultimately assisted in a website conversion, from a lead generation to a sale. And finally, follow the above strategies for a successful 2017.

Read next: 3 quick SEO fixes for every website

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