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TOP SEO TRENDS OF 2019
In the SEO world, 2018 was marked by loads of algorithm update coming from Google Search. In my opinion, it seemed like 2018 was the wildest year concerning Google updates yet, and something tells me this just became the new norm. All SEOs should get used with constant and sometimes drastic algorithm changes coming from Google.
The Medic update from August 2018 showed everyone that Google can now destroy particular niches. I've worked on lots of medical based websites and content for years now, and I've witnessed total devastation of most of these websites. To be fair, the content itself was playing by the algorithm rules and wasn't really serving the user. It had everything it needed to rank well on the old rules but lack in essence and helpfulness. Of course, there are ways to recover from this update, but it can be very painful to witness a 70% drop in organic traffic.
Now thinking of 2019, here are the most important SEO trends that will shape the plans of every serious SEO out there:
1. Expect the Google search team to remain just as active as in 2018 if not even more so.
As I said, all these Google Search updates aren't going anywhere. I bet they'll remain just as numerous in 2019. Better yet expect some serious changes on all fronts, the most important for SEOs being the switch to the new Search Console.
I know you hate using the new Search Console, but you better get used with it fast, because in 2019 Google may well be closing the old Search Consol, it already started moving most of the data to the new one, and some statistics had already stopped functioning in the old console.
This is a big deal for old-school SEOs that got used with the old Search Console. We are going to miss it, but I believe the change is welcomed. By the way, expect this trend to continue. It seems to me that Google is moving more and more into SEO tools territory and may even put some SEO tools out of business by offering direct SEO insights that some tools only speculated by collecting huge amounts of data, but now Google is starting to provide directly more and more information.
2. Mobile first index will continue.
In 2018 Google began switching websites to mobile first index, meaning the mobile version of the website will become to the main ranking version for a specific domain. Until now this was strictly desktop based, but Google is planning to switch everybody to a mobile-first index in 2019. If you haven't got an email from Search Console informing you about this, you probably going to get it this year.
3. Your online brand presence will become a significant ranking factor.
Google has stated numerous times that brand mentions may matter when it comes to SEO and this is only natural. Google is constantly improving and is looking for ways to figure out what the actual authority of a website is without relying too much on backlinks. Giving the fact that backlinks can be created artificially, even on significant authority domains, Google is trying to figure out through brand mentions and general online brand reputation how important and useful a certian brand is to users.
This new kind of AI together with other new parts of the search algorithm like Rank Brain will evolve into the future search ranking factors of Google, where SEO hacks will get you less and fewer results.
Conclusion: These are the three most essential SEO trends we will see in 2019, at least from my perspective. I've been quite broad in my descriptions, but yet again we are talking about a whole year. If you want to list more specific SEO trends for 2019, please do it in the comments below, I'd be happy to discuss them with you. Maybe in my next post, I'll write a highly detailed list of 20 or more important ranking factors for 2019.