2022 – will it be a year when the world ‘goes back to normal’? Will we be able to fly easily internationally? Will we have to wear face masks everywhere? No one knows, and this is the same for SEO. When putting together my 2022 SEO strategies for the GCD clients I am prepared to pivot and adjust strategies for the unpredictable. After the last couple of years, I think we have all come to expect this.
What I do know is that, as always, our strategies will focus on best practices and common sense.
SEO isn’t black magic and it isn’t always fair – sometimes Google can get it wrong. However in the long run, if you nail the basics, stick to best practices and have a good reason behind your actions – your SEO will fall into place.
So today, this post is about the strategies we will be implementing for our clients, alongside our own websites in order to continue to grow online. Don’t forget, ‘grand cru’ does mean ‘great growth’ after all 😉
1. Having the SEO basics in place
When I say SEO basics, I am talking about:
- Adding optimised title tags to those pages you want people to land on from Google
- To a lesser degree, but still important, adding unique and enticing meta descriptions to those key pages too
- Creating a website structure (aka URL structure) which makes sense – think of a family tree with parent and child pages
- Ensuring the website is easy to use and access on mobile devices
- Using internal links between pages to help people discover more on your website
- Avoiding broken links by using 301 redirects when pages are deleted or removed
- Optimising images
- Having Google Analytics set up and tracking sales/key actions
- Following Google’s SEO Starter Guide best practices
If you don’t have the SEO basics covered, then don’t expect to get far with growing your organic search traffic and conversions.
Here at GCD, we use Semrush to help us run regular monthly maintenance checks on our client’s websites, to spot things like broken links, duplicate title tags and meta descriptions and so much more. We are an affiliate of Semrush as we think it’s such a great tool, so if you haven’t checked it out yet, click through below to learn more.
2. Focus on evergreen content
Creating new content for your website is great however, alongside this you could be ensuring the current content on your website is up to date and providing value to your website visitors.
If an event has passed, or you’re talking about ‘tips for 2019’ for example, then this content might be better deleted and redirected or updated so it’s relevant for people today.
Think of content this way – if you are not prepared to share it with your audience on social media today, then why would people from search engines want to click through to it?
I know it’s hard to delete old content that you have put your heart and soul into however, what is the point in keeping content if it is not helping, enriching or being seen by people?
3. Embed videos and optimise for search
It’s not news that video is big these days. However, if you want your videos to be found online more, then ensuring they are on YouTube (the 2nd largest search engine after Google) should be a priority. And don’t forget to optimise your videos either, a couple of my tips are:
- Keep titles to under 60 characters if possible so the title doesn’t get cut off in the search results
- Front load your descriptions with the most important content, as people only see the first 2-3 lines then need to click the ‘read more’ to see the rest.
- Consider adding subtitles, a lot of people watch videos without sound
- Make sure you fill in all the options in the backend, tags, categories, etc
- The thumbnail is obviously very important (and don’t forget to consider where the overlays will go on the search results
- Add video chapters to highlight important sections
Now alongside this, if relevant and useful, I would look at also embedding your videos into your webpages where relevant, as videos can show up in the search results:
When embedding videos on your website you want to think about:
- Ensuring the video isn’t going to slow down the page too much
- Ensuring the video can easily be watched on both desktop and mobile
- Including a transcript (Google can’t hear the video, so in order for the content to be understood by Google, adding a written transcript is the best way)
- Potentially adding video schema
4. Google Business Profiles
Now is the time to get your business on Google – if you haven’t already set up a Google Business Profile (previously known as Google My Business). This is ESSENTIAL if you have a location customers visit, however even if you don’t, and work from home, like us, then a Google Business Profile can still be very useful.
Once you have set up your profile you should be giving it regular attention – I would recommend weekly, or at least monthly at a minimum. Here is what you should be doing on the regular:
- Keeping all your business information up to date, especially updating your business hours as necessary
- Responding to all reviews
- Adding fresh posts
- Adding new images and videos
Alongside Google Business Profile you can also set up a Bing Places profile and there are a few other free online business directories we recommend.
Your 2022 SEO strategy
Hopefully, this helps you or at least provides some tips on helping your put together your own SEO strategy. If you’re keen to work with us in 2022. Please add your details to our waiting list here. At this stage we probably won’t be taking on any new clients till mid-2022 at the earliest.