The Future of SEO: Emerging Trends and Predictions for 2024
In 2024, it is important to review the previous year’s results and plan for future development, including SEO trends. As technology advances, traditional methods become outdated, and new ones emerge. We have analyzed the latest trends to identify the most relevant tools for the near future.
Current Trends for 2024
Let’s begin by examining the techniques and trends that will continue to be relevant and gain importance in the field of SEO in 2024.
User Experience (UX)
Behavioral factors are important to search engines, as they monitor how well a website meets the needs of its visitors. The following are taken into account by search engine algorithms:
- the number of direct and repeated transitions through bookmarks or manual entry into the address bar;
- percentage of returns to issue;
- percentage of refusals — visits not exceeding 15 seconds in time;
- number of pages viewed per visit (depth);
- average time to study content.
The longer visitors spend on the platform, the more pages they view and actions they take. This, in turn, leads to higher search results.
Things to consider:
Core Web Vitals. Google developed this metric for convenience. The ranking algorithm includes the following:
- LCP reflects the speed at which a page loads. According to Google developers, the heaviest element should load in under 2.5 seconds. If it takes between 2.5 and 4 seconds, steps should be taken to reduce the weight of the content.
- FID. Or a delay after the first input. The metric will go live in March 2024 and replace Interaction with Next Paint (INP). FID measures the latency between a user’s first interaction with an interactive element and the browser’s response. It is recommended by Google to keep this metric under 100ms.
- CLS. Cumulative Layout Shift (CLS) is the degree to which page elements shift after loading the page. This effect also occurs when a user opens a website, and after a split second, all the elements adjust to fit the device’s screen. It is recommended to keep CLS below 0.1 to prevent the text from jumping after scrolling and irritating the audience.
Mobile responsive.If a website is not optimized for mobile devices, more than half of the target audience may be lost. Search engines consider this when ranking websites.
To optimize a resource, it is recommended to begin by addressing technical issues. This is because it is easier to identify errors at this stage. Search engines favor stable, fast websites that function seamlessly across all platforms and provide prompt responses to user actions.
In the information technology age, high-quality content reigns supreme. Such content dominates search engines, media, marketplaces, and offline stores. However, the concept of ‘quality’ is subjective. Informativeness, usefulness, uniqueness, convenience, completeness of information, and reliability are general characteristics of content that need to be developed for the future of SEO.
What rules will come to the fore:
1. Publishing high-quality and unique content is essential. While it is possible to create a unique article with tools like ChatGPT quickly, it is important to consider whether it will attract the target audience. It is advisable to involve expert authors who understand the target audience’s needs.
2. E-A-T Accounting. In December 2022, Google expanded its E-A-T content quality measurement system to E-E-A-T, which stands for experience, expertise, authoritativeness, and trustworthiness. Google values materials from authoritative publications with reliable data that contain evidence of personal experience. The official guidelines provide an example of the lowest level of E-A-T – eyewear website DecorMyEyes, which has been reported to threaten users and spread false information. A good level is achieved when the text includes quotes from reputable experts, the author’s photographs, conclusions, links to sources, and reviews.
3. Using keywords without over-optimization is important. Ideally, users should not notice the presence of keywords in the text. It is recommended to monitor for spam using specialized services. If an article is competently written in natural language with a consistent presentation of information, over-optimization should not occur.
4. Optimizing Titles and Meta Tags to Increase Click-Through Rates (CTR). Write the title and description to attract attention. When someone looks at search results, they only see the title and description. If they don’t grab attention, the CTR will be too low, causing a drop in rankings.
The content should be customized to suit the preferences of the intended audience. Homemakers, on the other hand, prefer colorful photographs. For instance, individuals between the ages of 18 and 20 tend to prefer brief vertical videos, while IT professionals prefer technically advanced texts with code examples and screenshots. This is where content quality meets behavioral factors.
Measuring the technical features of a site is a reliable way to evaluate its usefulness, as opposed to relying on subjective factors. What’s Important for SEO in 2024:
- SSL encryption. HTTPS ensures a secure connection and is a significant ranking factor for search engines.
- Competent internal linking. Following the generally accepted rules of page hierarchy is sufficient to avoid any issues. This practice helps distribute static weight and facilitates indexing, which search engines value.
- Image optimization. As graphics become more prevalent, search engines suggest compressing images to save bandwidth and speed up page loading. Additionally, it is important to fill in the Alt attribute. Current Google SEO trends involve adding informative descriptions without overusing keywords.
- When working on technical optimization, it is important to consider users’ needs. Building intuitive navigation is beneficial not only for search engines but also for live visitors. Additionally, this has a positive effect on behavioral factors.
Links continue to play a crucial role in generating search results. However, it is important to note that mass purchasing of links is not an effective strategy. Search engines are quick to detect such practices. We recommend following the rules:
- the closer the link is to the main page, the better;
- consider the credibility of the donor;
- surround the link with useful, relevant content; use anchors with key phrases;
- consider the lifespan of the link mass.
Avoid websites with low search engine visibility to prevent spam. Priority should be given to information that other donors have already referenced. Algorithms appreciate this chain of citations.
What No Longer Works
SEO is a dynamic field. Technologies and algorithms are constantly changing, and some previously popular strategies may either lose their former effectiveness or become completely irrelevant. It is important to stay up-to-date with the latest developments in the field. The following techniques should be avoided:
- Not long ago, it was believed that having a keyword in the domain name would directly affect rankings. However, this year, Google representatives clarified in an industry podcast that a keyword in the URL will not affect rankings, but it may impact click-through rates in search results.
- Filling out the Meta Keywords tag is no longer a relevant SEO tactic. Major search engines, including Google, have stopped considering it as a ranking factor due to site owners manipulating search engine algorithms trends. It is predicted that by 2024, this promotion tactic will be obsolete.
- The exact occurrence of keywords in links is no longer as important as it used to be. For Google and Yandex, naturalness and context are now more important.
- This has led to the automatic generation of SEO content. Algorithms such as Google Bert and other assistive artificial intelligence are becoming increasingly intelligent and can quickly identify low-quality content generated by language GPT platforms.
Search engines aim to filter out low-quality, spammy, unhelpful, and misleading pages. It is important to focus on website content before working on SEO. Behavioral factors should be taken into consideration, and the use of key phrases should be balanced. Donors for links should be carefully selected, and technical errors that interfere with the regular operation of the resource should be eliminated.
The Best Strategies for 2024
Now that we are aware of the future SEO trends, let’s explore the most effective strategies to implement in your business in 2024.
SEO and Generative Search in 2024
The testing of a new generative search (SGE) by Google has been successful so far, and it is expected to become a reality in 2024. SGE uses advanced AI technology to generate responses to user queries, which are displayed at the top of the page, similar to zero results. This provides key points on demand, allowing users to delve deeper into the topic. Additionally, a block with relevant articles appears next to the generated response.
SEO and AI
Artificial intelligence (AI) is already widely used in SEO, and not utilizing its capabilities is akin to sending letters by pigeon mail. While it is difficult to predict the future, we believe that AI will not replace SEO specialists in the near future. Instead, it will provide new opportunities and help with routine tasks, ultimately saving specialists time.
AI can be a valuable tool in creating high-quality and relevant content, but it should always be under human control. Users can create articles tailored to their audience’s interests and SEO requirements. The key is to focus on the right products. While manual editing is still necessary, it is much faster than writing from scratch. Additionally, keyword optimization is well-implemented with the help of AI.
Content remains the foundation of effective SEO. However, traditional methods of searching for information have changed significantly. Users are clicking on links less and relying more on quick responses. Therefore, companies must optimize content for search engine responses, known as Answer Engine Optimization (AEO), to stay on trend.
AEO focuses on response engines, which are AI technologies designed to provide immediate answers to user queries. Examples of such engines include ChatGPT from OpenAI, Google’s Search Engine, and Bing chatbot from Microsoft. The main task of AEO is to optimize queries aimed at obtaining direct answers. This means that the AI algorithms must be able to efficiently process and use information in automatically generated content by explicitly answering specific questions. The question-answer format is well-suited for this purpose. It is similar to an FAQ section but shared throughout the content.
In 2024, the SEO industry will become more user-centric, technology-driven, and data-driven. The focus will be on connecting with audiences, delivering value, and adapting to the ever-changing digital landscape. The year will be devoted to developing existing tools rather than the emergence of revolutionary trends. It is recommended to review strategies from the past year and abandon methods and techniques that are no longer relevant while focusing on effective promotion methods.
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