Top 10 WordPress SEO trends for 2017

Before you craft your WordPress SEO strategy for 2017, it’s important to understand how big picture SEO trends could affect your search goals. Here are my WordPress SEO Trends for 2017. 
WordPress SEO trends 2017

This talk was given at the Melbourne SEO Meetup, and video recorded on SEMrush facebook live.

Also the Slides from the talk are available on Slideshare

1. Searcher intent will beat keywords

In 2017, ‘searcher intent’ will be the key focus for Google showing results. The days of keyword loading website pages or blog posts are over – thank goodness!

Knowing your searcher intent takes time to research, understand and think about. Digging deep into the motivation and reasons of your website visitors will reap rewards.

To structure your WordPress site, I suggest you focus on topics instead of keywords. In depth, quality content on topics related to your brand and industry will win out.

Hummingbird and RankBrain will both continue to improve in 2017.

2. Quality epic content will continue to reign

In 2017 the value of having epic content, that’s comprehensive useful and engaging is only going to rise. And this means that the demand for quality skilled copywriters will increase.

Creating epic content starts with answering the questions your target audience is asking –online, on the phone and when you meet them face-to-face. Reviewing and revising these questions with fresh eyes every few months will help you stay on track with your quality content creation.

Long form content that includes images, diagrams, infographics and videos takes time and energy. In 2017, this style of interesting, engaging and informational content will win more links.

3. WordPress page load times will be critical

If you haven’t checked your WordPress site’s page load times recently, make this a priority. Website speed impacts rankings and conversions affecting 50% of your audience. In 2017, most of us will still sit down at a desktop to do most of our work. But keep in mind that many of us are now using mobiles to search. Your mobile speed time is very important as it gives rise to AMP (Accelerated Mobile Pages)

4. Paid channels will continue to rise

In 2017, organic search results will be harder to achieve, as more ‘real estate’ in SERP’s will be given to Ads. Expect to see more variety with types of Ads this year with larger Ads and scraped results showing as answer boxes starting to show Ads.

5. Voice search will be more prominent

Voice search has been around and improving for some time. In 2017 voice recognition algorithms will be improving with users performing more voice searches while they multitask. Many cars have personal assistant devices now and with devices like Google Home and Amazon Echo the popularity of voice search will increase.

6. App store optimisation will be on the rise

If you want to capture over 50% of search in 2017, your SEO efforts should focus on mobile. Google’s increased focus on Apps to extend search functionality with App Store Optimization, App Deep Linking, App Indexing means App Deep Linking would be a powerful tactic to consider.

7. AMP will become commonplace

Accelerated Mobile Pages are flagship answer to mobile speed. AMP is the Google-backed open standard and significant efforts have been invested in this technology. In 2017 expect to see more search queries returning AMP content in SERPs. This increased functionality will widen search to include more content types

8. Schema and rich snippets rise

In 2017, search engines will continue to gain more meaning from our content, especially those using schema mark-up. The SERPs will continue to display richer results.

9. Technical SEO will have resurgence in 2017

The SERPs features are forever being improved and changed with more device types and diverse searching platforms. To meet this rising demand, there will be higher demand for technical SEO skills including Web Server, Web Coding and Languages like Angular.

10. Machine learning and AI steady march

Since the early days of computing, AI or Artificial Intelligence has been a long time goal. The continued advancements in Machine Learning will help systems learn and respond faster.

Personal assistant style ‘bots’ on our devices seem inevitable, and they will aim to plug the context gap currently between users and search engines, leading to a hyper-personalized experience.

I hope these 10 WordPress SEO tips for can help you plan ahead with your SEO strategy. I’d love to hear what you’re planning in 2017 for your SEO strategy. Feel free to leave a comment below.