The only thing that remains the same is change — which means now is the perfect time to start planning your digital marketing campaigns for the next months.
This includes all things related to search engine optimization (SEO).
However, what worked in the past for increasing your website’s ranking in the SERPs isn’t exactly what is going to get you through 2022.
Google has made it widely known that they’re working to get rid of spam and increase the number of links with engaging and informative content that offers a positive user experience.
In fact, this is something they’ve recently addressed in their November 2021 Core Algorithm update.
This means adjusting your tactics now is the best way to ensure success in terms of the amount and type of traffic your website receives from Google.
So, are you ready to jump in and learn more about the best trends to help you reach your goals? Here are nine SEO trends to boost your rankings in 2022.
1. First-Party Data Collection
In the last couple of years, Google has really shaken things up by pushing to retire third-party cookies.
From a consumer standpoint, this is an excellent move that really increases personal data privacy.
But for marketers? It can really feel like getting shot in the foot.
That’s why there is no surprise that creating a first-party data collection plan is at the top of everyone’s SEO to-do list in 2022.
How does this work?
Essentially, website owners work to bring plenty of new customers and potential leads to their website via search engines like Google and Bing.
From there, they can offer incentives for individuals to request quotes, sign up for an email list, or any other captive strategy to help collect contact information on a first-party basis.
This is really an important concept that all digital marketers need to focus on right now, as the ability to lean on third-party cookies and other information to reach your target market is swiftly coming to an end.
2. Improved Page Speed
While it seems like page speed is something that shows up in these SEO trends lists each year, there’s a good reason.
Think about it for a minute. New Android and iPhone models come out every year, right? As do the latest tablets, laptops, and desktop computers, too.
These devices have better processors, meaning they pull up websites faster than before. If you aren’t doing your part to ensure your website is ready, you could really be turning off your audience.
Furthermore, Google has already made it known that page speed is a factor taken into consideration for ranking.
This means improving yours helps both the overall user experience of your website visitors and your potential to claim a coveted page one spot in the SERPs.
Not sure where to start?
There are tons of great SEO plugins for WordPress and other platforms that can spot areas in which you can improve page load from the technical side.
If that doesn’t solve the problem, then you might need to upgrade to a better plan with your web host.
3. Expanded User Experience
Let’s face it. Expanded user experiences are not necessarily a trend that will come and go as time passes.
However, focusing on giving your site visitors the best possible impression when they’re on your page is growing as a driving force for search marketing.
To really understand this concept, we need to break it down.
First, keep in mind that a website with tons of errors, an aged aesthetic, and a terrible navigation structure is one that people will likely click off of the moment they arrive.
Next, you need to remember that Google tracks and takes into consideration time spent on a website when linked from search.
As they see it, a website that people aren’t going to stay on to get the answers they need is likely either irrelevant or spammy.
And, as we already know, those are two things that can really turn off Google in terms of selecting links for that first page of results.
That means people clicking off right away because of poor UX does indeed affect your chances of ranking high in the Google SERPs.
So, how do you fix this?
Start by going through and using your website as a visitor would. If you find anything annoying or generally unpleasant in the process, don’t be afraid to switch it up.
Likewise, a new site design for a new year might also be a wise idea, depending on the current status of your page.
4. Better Focus on User Intent
When discussing SEO trends for 2022, it is also vital to talk about increasing your website’s focus on user intent.
While that might sound like a mouthful of jargon, it really comes down to this: people searching the web are looking for a very specific answer to a very specific issue, question, or problem.
Your job as a digital marketer and content creator is to think about:
- How these individuals are going to look for that solution
- And how you can format your content to give them what they need.
Focusing on how to make your solution the best for their needs is going to bring in more organic traffic, ensure they stay longer on your website, and help build trust with your target audience.
Besides that, Google is already starting to expand search to include more AI-driven and intuitive results.
While that might not totally happen in 2022, it is best to prepare now by angling your content with this mindset.
5. Refreshed Existing Content
What’s another big one on the list of SEO trends to pay attention to in 2022?
Refreshed content, of course.
Back before the internet, making changes to a story or news article was stupidly cost-prohibitive.
At that time, publishers had to consider material costs, distribution issues, and then getting that refreshed information into the hands of readers.
The good news? The internet is changeable at any time.
This means that all website owners should go back and assess their current content to make room for additional details, longer copy, or more focused keywords.
Think of it as your way of taking the really good stuff that’s already there and beefing it up for a bigger, badder, and better version.
The end result is the ability to rank higher and really outshine the competition for organic traffic in the coming year.
6. More Evergreen Content
While it is a great idea to go back and refresh your existing content, let’s talk for a moment about adding more evergreen content.
Both ideas go back to one core value — content is still king of the SEO trends, no matter what the year.
This means you absolutely cannot depend on just your existing content alone to bring in new traffic for you this year.
Instead, have a plan to add more evergreen content to the framework of your website.
After all, the more pages you have with different keyword focuses, the easier it is for someone to find the information you provide.
When you provide more information, you position your brand or company as an expert in your field.
Experts in a given industry are deemed more trustworthy, making it easier to collect first-party information like quote requests, lead generation forms, and email marketing signups.
See where we are going with this?
If you do nothing out of this list of SEO trends for 2022 but this one thing, make sure to add more evergreen content to your website.
7. Omnichannel Digital Campaigns
For a lot of digital marketers, it can be far too easy to compartmentalize different aspects of your overall strategy into separate buckets — each with its own branding, goals, messages, and more.
The problem with this is that today’s consumers are everywhere, all at once.
Need an example? Think about the average person. They’re on social media pages like Instagram and Facebook. Maybe they’re even on Snapchat, TikTok, or Pinterest.
Then they’re looking for answers to questions or solutions to problems on Google.
If you aren’t working with an omnichannel strategy, these same people can overlook your page after they just saw you on a different channel.
Different branding on different pages can be confusing, meaning they’re likely overlooking your website in the SERPs because they don’t see how everything is connected together.
This means that it is more important than ever to have a cohesive, streamlined approach to all of your digital marketing campaigns.
8. Interactive Experiences
One unique addition to the list of SEO trends for the coming year to really pay attention to is the use of interactive experiences.
These are things like quizzes, guides, videos, or anything besides basic text that draw a visitor in and give them a way to engage with your page.
What makes this type of content better for search is that it gives the user the information they’re looking for in a format that’s more memorable and easier to navigate.
Interactive experiences are also a great way to boost user experience and stand out from competitors within your niche.
While it might not be possible to switch to an interactive format for every evergreen topic on your website, it is a good idea to analyze which pages and keywords already bring in a lot of organic traffic.
Then brainstorm ideas for expanding them with a form of interactive content.
9. Google Discover Optimization
A super fun addition to this list of SEO trends for 2022 is the inclusion of Google Discover.
What is Google Discover? Well, it is a feed that collects relevant information based on what an individual typically searches for and places it at the top of the search page.
Think of it as a so-called friendless feed that gives you the latest stories, articles, media, videos, and more based on topics that are either trending in your area or fall in line with many of your general search interests.
As a digital marketer working on improving search visibility, it is important to include a visual photo that correlates to your topic and keyword.
Google Discover always includes this image as part of the search listing, which makes it 100% vital if you’re trying to rank in this capacity.
Finally, you want to keep on creating great content that matches the interests and needs of your audience.
When you do this, Google is much more likely to add your page to Google Discover, which will bring in more organic traffic than other basic SEO techniques.
Wrap Up: SEO Trends to Pay Attention to in 2022
As we turn the calendar page to another year, it is important to start formulating digital marketing plans for the next twelve months.
These nine SEO trends are a good place to start, but they really all boil down to what every search engine expert out there already knows:
Good content that’s engaging, informative, and offers value to your audience will always be the easiest and most popular way to gain more organic traffic, rank higher in the SERPs, and expand your audience.
Not sure where to start with your marketing in the coming year?
Our Rock Content team of experts has you covered with our 2022 Marketing Planning Bundle. It’s a free way to get a jumpstart on success!