Mobile SEO and search marketing tactics for mobile devices. #MobileSEO

10 SEO Trends In 2021

10 SEO Trends That Will Define the Digital Marketing Landscape in 2021

With a new year comes new search engine optimization (SEO) trends. The practices that encompass SEO aren’t static. They change and evolve regularly. Old practices will fade as they are replaced with new practices. You must leverage the latest SEO trends in 2021 to succeed in digital marketing.

Let’s take a closer look at the SEO trends in 2021 that will influence search results:

1) Voice Search

Although it’s been around since the early 2000s, voice search is rapidly growing. A recent report by Adobe indicates that nearly half of all consumers use it to find information on the internet. In 2021, the number of voice search users will likely grow even larger due to the widespread adoption of smart speakers and smartphones.

Voice search involves the use of a virtual assistant, such as Amazon Alexa or Google Assistant, to perform a web-based search through speech. It offers unparalleled convenience and ease of use compared to traditional searching methods. Instead of typing their search queries, consumers can speak them into a supported device. You can reach these consumers by optimizing your website for spoken, voice-based searches, a significantly growing SEO trend in 2021.

2) Core Web Vitals

Google is expected to update its algorithm in 2021 with a new set of ranking signals. Known as Core Web Vitals, it rewards websites that offer a positive experience. Core Web Vitals introduces three new ranking signals: Largest Contentful Paint, First Input Delay and Cumulative Layout Shift. These signals focus on speed and usability. With Core Web Vitals, websites that load quickly and are easy to use will rank higher than their slow and difficult-to-use counterparts.

If your website isn’t optimized for speed and usability, its rankings may suffer in the wake of Core Web Vitals. Fortunately, you can measure your website’s Core Web Vitals health in Google Search Console. The search analysis platform has a new “Core Web Vitals” tab that shows which pages on your website are good and which pages need improving in regards to Core Web Vitals. This is a critical SEO trend in 2021 to not overlook, as your performance may suffer if this is ignored.

3) Nofollow Backlinksseo trends

Nofollow backlinks, as well as their variants, will take the stage in 2021. The nofollow attribute has been around for over 15 years. Throughout most of its history, search engines have ignored it when ranking websites. When they came across a nofollow backlink, they would filter it.

Google began taking a different approach in 2019, during which it announced the use of nofollow backlinks as a ranking hint. In this same announcement, Google unveiled two new variants of the nofollow attribute: ugc and sponsored, which it also uses as ranking hints. Backlinks featuring the nofollow attribute or any of its two variants can now affect your website’s rankings, so don’t overlook them in your 2021 SEO strategy.

4) Semantic Search

Another SEO trend for 2021 is semantic search. Search engines have changed the way in which they interpret search queries. Rather than processing each word in a search query independently, they look for connections between words. Known as semantic search, it allows search engines to understand a user’s intent behind his or her search query.

Search engines aren’t going to stop using semantic search in 2021. It allows them to serve highly relevant results by understanding what, exactly, their users are trying to find. Since semantic search is here to stay, you must approach content creation with your website’s audience in mind. Keyword density ratios no longer matter with semantic search. What matters is that your website’s content satisfies the intent of its audience.

5) Featured Snippets

Featured snippets are literally and figuratively on the rise. According to Moz, over 8 percent of all Google searches now have them. They are similar to standard organic listings, except that the format is reversed. Featured snippets are formatted with a description at the top, followed by a linked title below.

Aside from their reversed format, featured snippets are restricted to a special placement at the top of the search results. They appear above all standard listings where they typically drive high organic click-through rates (CTRs). If a page on your website earns a featured snippet, it will outrank all other listings for the search query that triggered it.

6) Rich Results

Search engines will continue to build rich results using structured data in 2021. Also known as rich snippets, not to be confused with featured snippets, rich results are enhanced listings. Standard listings contain a title, description and display URL. Rich results simply contain additional information.

Rich results can show information such as reviews, ratings, recipes, coupons, event dates, business information and more. This additional information is conveyed to search engines using structured data. Structured data gives search engines more information about the content on a page, which they’ll use to create a rich result for the page.

7) Video Content

You can’t ignore video content in your 2021 SEO strategy. According to a recent study by Searchmetrics, 62 percent of all search queries on Google contain at least one indexed video. Google includes video listings with its standard listings. Users don’t have to click the “Videos” tab. If Google believes a video is relevant to a user’s search query, it may show the video in the search results.

Video listings are different than standard listings. They typically have a screenshot thumbnail with an overlay play button, whereas standard listings only contain text. The presence of a thumbnail makes video listings stand out and attract more clicks. Of course, you must create video content to rank in a video listing.

8) Mobile-First Indexing

Mobile-first indexing will be in full effect this year. If your website has a desktop version and a mobile version, only the mobile version will affect its rankings on Google. Google will still crawl the desktop version, albeit less frequently than before, but it will only use the mobile version to determine your website’s rankings.

Google has been working on mobile-first indexing since 2016. In September 2020, it finally began rolling it out. With 2021 being the first full year of Google implementing it, you can’t ignore mobile-first indexing in your SEO strategy. It changes how Google’s algorithm indexes and ranks websites by disregarding their desktop version in favor of their mobile version. To ensure your website’s search rankings don’t get slapped, make sure the mobile version is properly optimized and contains the same content as the desktop version.

9) Author Expertise

Author expertise is another SEO trend in 2021. Google is now placing more weight on the expertise of content creators. It recently rolled out the Expertise, Authoritativeness and Trustworthiness (E-A-T) update, which improved the ranking value of content pieces written by experts.

How do you show Google that you are an expert exactly? For starters, you must attach your name to your content pieces. Google tracks expertise primarily by author names. If you don’t include your name on an article or blog post, Google won’t know who wrote it. Writing high-quality and detailed content pieces can of course build your expertise. Don’t rush when creating content. Take your time to create fewer but better content pieces.

10) Smaller Search Engines

While nothing suggests Google will be dethroned in 2021, it may forfeit some of its massive market share to smaller search engines. Bing and Yahoo collectively account for roughly 10 percent of all U.S. searches, according to data collected by StatCounter. There’s also DuckDuckGo, which is now the fourth-most popular search engine in the United States and the fifth-most popular search engine worldwide.

With smaller search engines continuing to gain notoriety, they’ll become more valuable targets for SEO. They may not drive as much as traffic as Google, but they’ll still bring new visitors to your website.

You can’t stop the evolution of SEO trends. As search engines change their algorithms and ranking methodologies, SEO trends in 2021 will continue to evolve. By adjusting your strategy to include these up-to-date trends, you’ll have an easier time succeeding at SEO in 2021.


Make Your Mobile UX Better

How to Make Your Content Work On Mobile

The mobile experience (mobile UX) of your website is crucial to its success. This is because of the increasingly device agnostic approach of most technology users. They want to have the same experience, get the same information, and achieve the same tasks, whatever device they are on. Understanding mobile user behavior is crucial in a solid mobile SEO strategy.

Making your content on mobile as good as possible starts with design. The tips for mobile UX here are mostly about content creation, but there is a crossover between the design of your mobile website and the creation of content. This is unavoidable, so you will have to consider and work on both. This means making sure your mobile design, functionality, and navigation are as good as they can be.

Functionality, in particular mobile UX, is essential. Ideally, you shouldn’t have any functions on your website that only work on desktop devices. You also have to test the typography settings of your website, making sure it is easy to ready on mobile.

In addition, make sure the links and navigation work well on mobile. Remember that text links are harder to use on mobile than on desktop, simply because fingers are clumsier than mouse pointers.

mobileCreating Content That Works On Mobile

You should think specifically about mobile users when creating content. This might sound obvious, but it is a principle that is not always acted on. An example is a blog post that looks great and is easy to read when on a computer but doesn’t work very well on mobile. You should always think about the mobile experience.

To do that you have to understand who your mobile users are, and what they want to do. This includes identifying how they will find or access your site (for example; through a Google search), and what pages they will enter from. Will they make a purchase on your mobile website? Do they want to find information, or do they want to contact you?

Getting Content Right On Mobile

In many cases, you will have to adjust your style of writing for mobile. Most advice for writing on the web includes breaking up the text with paragraphs, headings, and lists. This applies on mobile too, but paragraphs should be even shorter. A good guide is to keep your paragraphs to 50-100 words.

Finally, think about how you will position the call to action on mobile. Does this meet the same requirements you have on desktop devices? This includes being high on the page and visible with zero or minimal amounts of scrolling.

Mobile devices are here to stay, so every website owner and content creator has to think mobile first or at least as much as they think desktop.

local seo

Geolocation Tactics For Local SEO Success

Learning to Love Geolocation – Smart Geolocation Tactics for Marketing Success

If you want to increase your website conversions and boost your online sales, you need to target your customers where they live. Geolocation services allow you to do just that, and in this age of smartphones and mobile devices finding your customers where they are is easier than ever before. Often referred to as geo-fencing or geo-targeting, the ability to target your audience close to home is a game changer.

Consumers have reached a certain comfort level with geo-tracking and geolocation services, and most leave these services turned on when they shop, run errands and take care of the necessities of daily life. That means you can use geolocation to find the customers most likely to need what you have to sell.

local seoTaking advantage of geolocation is a great way to boost the bottom line, but success is far but guaranteed. Your competitors are working hard as well, and staying ahead of those competitors has never been more important. Here are some tips you can use to improve your results and boost your website conversions.

Use the Exclusionary Principle

Geolocation lets you know where your customers are, but it also allows you to know where they are not. Geolocation is very much a double-edged tool, and smart companies have learned to make the most of the exclusionary principle.

If you run a bar or club in a university town, your normal target audience is probably the students who go there. Throughout the semester, you can use geolocation services to find those students and entice them with drink specials, low-cost food and other goodies.

When school is out for the summer, however, those loyal university students will be gone. That means targeting another class of customers until class is back in session.

Prioritize Prime Locations

Marketing is all about striking the proper balance. Casting too wide a net can mean wasted money and effort, while making your target too narrow could mean losing out on customers and sales.

When it comes to optimizing geo-targeting, it pays to prioritize the  best locations. Over time you will get to know which locations perform the best, and spending your limited marketing dollars targeting those areas is one of the best ways to improve click-through rates and ultimately sales as well. That may mean raising your bid for those prime locations, but the results will be well worth the extra cost.

Improve Your Results with Paid Search Ads and Location-Specific Keywords

Paid search is not always the best marketing choice, but this technique can really improve local results. Using a combination of location-specific keywords and paid search can make it far easier for your target customers to find you – and that is good news for them and for you.

Examples of location-specific keywords are nearly endless, ranging from things like “Cleveland area gyms” and “Italian restaurants in Chicago” to “coffee shops near Union Square” to “hotels near the White House.” By using these location-specific keywords and testing your results, you can fine-tune your marketing and boost your conversions over time.

Local SEO -Remember To Own Your Home Market First!

Reaching your customers where they live, play and work has never been more important. The popularity of smartphones means that today’s consumer is always connected – and always ready to buy. The companies who are best able to reach those consumers and provide them with what they need are the ones most likely to succeed. By using smart geolocation practices, you can be that successful company and see your profits soar.

google analytics

6 Free Tools For Grassroots SEO

SEO Today Includes Mobile Optimization

In the modern era, simply creating a visually stunning website is not enough. With modifications to the Google search algorithm like Panda, Penguin, and Hummingbird, attention to detail has become crucial. For business owners that want to forego hiring an SEO professional for over $100 per hour, there are few options outside of learning it themselves. Fortunately, recent changes have put pressure on the market to come up with easy-to-understand software solutions, which can make doing and learning SEO possible at the same time. Below are six free SEO tools you should be using to do your on-site optimization will be enumerated and described for your convenience.

Free SEO Tools For Mobile SEO

google-mobile-testAs mobile SEO continues to grow, the importance of knowing how your website appears to your mobile audience is a priority for success. Adopting a mobile first mentality is key to long term business growth and one recently upgraded mobile SEO tool is from Google. The Google Mobile testing tool  offers an excellent overview of three key areas that impact mobile performance, mobile friendliness, mobile speed and desktop speed. This free SEO tool also makes recommendations for improvements.

Structured data testing tool
In tandem with the mobile testing tool above, Google’s structured data testing tool highlights structured data on your website that can help promote both your mobile and desktop grassroots SEO efforts. Check out this free SEO structured data testing tool here:

Screaming Frog SEO Tool
Screaming Frog is a tool that is basically free to grassroots marketers as well as professsionals in the SEO game. The software is only “basically” free because it allows for 500 scans before you have to begin subscribing. For a person only handling optimization on a single business website, this is equivalent to free software. The program itself scans your website and allows you to see things you are missing or elements you have duplicates of. Areas of analysis include such elements as:

  • Titles
  • H1/H2 Headings
  • Meta Descriptions
  • Meta Keywords
  • Images/Alt Text
  • Internal/External Links

Google Webmaster Tools

Webmaster tools are another free SEO tool offering from some of the major search engines. There is no separation between pro and amateur, though, so using them really is free. Because their algorithm changes have had the most drastic effect on SEO in recent years, most people tend to focus on Google specifically. However, Bing has a webmaster tool that is far more exhaustive and informative and even includes file size, load time, and compression analysis that Google lacks. This is not to say that one is better than the other, just that both should be used for their unique strengths.

Google Analytics

free-seo-toolsGoogle provides analytical tools meant to provide tracking data for visitors to your website. While proprietary tracking systems are available, Google is the industry leader and provides their service for free. The data provided allows you to take an in depth look at just what people are doing when they reach your website. Using Google Analytics can allow you to pinpoint weaknesses and exploit strengths with little more than the addition of a single line of tracking code to your website’s HTML. Analytics allow you to track:

  • Demographics
  • Behavior
  • Browsing Platform
  • Conversions
  • Mobile

On Page Content Analysis
The days of targeting misspelled keywords to gain an edge are gone. Obvious spelling and grammar errors are ranking metrics, and remarks by Google’s Matt Cutts as well as Bing’s Duane Forrester confirm it. You should be making an effort to spell and grammar check every piece of web copy you place on your site with your word processor’s built in tool. There is also a plethora of websites out there that provide textual analysis for word repetition, and SEOQuake is an add on available for Chrome, Firefox, Safari, and Opera that shows the highest frequency words for pages you already have published. Checking for repetition can help you weed out accidental keywords and highlight overuse of keywords you really are targeting.

Use Free SEO Tools To Help You Optimize Efficiently

Getting SEO right on your website is no easy feat, even once you have been doing it awhile. However, using a few free SEO tools that are at everyone’s disposal can yield much more insight into what you need to do than you might expect. There are tools out there that charge large sums per month for use, but until you can internalize and use the tools listed here there is not much reason to switch. Most of the advanced tools tend to employ more complicated ways of looking at the same data and are often designed for SEO professionals. Get your grassroots SEO marketing started with the free SEO tools listed above.

local seo

Advertising On Google Maps

Plant Your Local Business on Google Maps Today!

If you’ve ever driven through a busy business district, you have probably noticed a lot of creative signs that are meant to catch attention. In a very similar way, local businesses can catch a customer’s eyes by planting their virtual signposts on digital maps. In fact, logos and pins on these online maps can even connect map users to current promotions and other kinds of relevant ads found on Google Maps and local search.

One of the largest and most popular providers of these types of map advertisements is Google. Since local searches have become an important way for companies to market, it’s worth knowing about this innovative source of local search advertising.

Why Google Map Ads Drive Local Businesses Success

local seoAccording to the company, ads on maps could appear on mobile and laptop versions of Google Maps. At the same time, the company has made it clear that they unveiled this kind of advertising with mobile users in mind. When their spokesman introduced this new part of the search network, he mentioned that local and location-based searches had grown more than any other kind of searches. As a result, local, location-based Google searches account for about 30 percent of total searches.

The company included Google Maps as another platform in their search network in order to take advantage of the popularity of their mapping system. In addition, Google released the news recently that the number of mobile searches had finally overtaken the number of searches performed on desktop and laptop computers. Thus, these ads provide a good way to target nearby customers who are searching for local businesses.

How Advertising on Google Maps Can Help Local Businesses

When a user searches for a certain kind of business in a specific location, companies that participate in the program can have both a company logo and pin that highlight the location on the map. When these pins and logos get clicked, the system will bring up more information about a business.

This additional information can even include search ads with current specials and other related advertising. These features help focus attention on these businesses and increase the chances that a customer will call or walk in the door. Of course, the additional information also includes basic details like a phone number, operating hours, and driving directions. In this way, AdWords integrates with Google My Business listings.

How Grassroots SEO Can Use Google Map Ads

To qualify for Google Maps advertising, follow these steps:

  • Enable the location-extensions feature within Google AdWords.
  • Ensure that the business listing within Google My Business has been filled out accurately.
  • Target locations for the advertisements.
  • Set bids for locations, and notice that these bids can even increase when searchers move closer to your location.
  • Create keywords that are likely to attract customers to your business.

Google offers pay-per-click ads on maps. Pricing includes charges for various kinds of actions that searchers might take. For example, a click charge could apply to a user who clicks to get directions to your store. As with other kinds of AdWords ads, it’s fairly simple to monitor the campaign’s performance within the system.

Will Ads on Google Maps Benefit Your Local Business?

Many businesses rely upon local search marketing in their grassroots SEO efforts to bring in new customers. If a potential customer searches for the products and services that you offer with Google Maps, these advertisements should get their attention. If you offer relevant deals or other attractive marketing within your advertisement, you’re likely to draw customers in. Google has made it easy for both small and large local businesses to get started with this innovative kind of local marketing. While different kinds of companies might have different success rates with these ads, they seem worth testing as a way to take advantage of local and location-based searches.

mobile optimization

Create Mobile Friendly Content

Is Your Content Mobile Friendly?

Does your content mirror mobile user behavior? Do you develop generic all encompassing content for your website or do you create mobile friendly content as well? There are industry benchmarks indicating mobile users searching with a high volume of branded terms that include location or activity based keyword modifiers. This search query behavior does vary from common desktop search that leaves out many of the branded terms. Sources below. This is yet another compelling reason to consider creating mobile friendly content specifically for your mobile audience.

mobile optimizationThe theme for mobile optimization success is to keep it simple. Keep the code simple, keep the design simple, and keep the content simple. To counter the difference in mobile search, it is imperative that your mobile SEO strategy accounts for these differences with tactics and techniques that include location and or activity optimization. Most importantly, make your mobile friendly content easy to find.

Think Fast and Short For Winning Mobile Content

Make sure that your mobile content is not blocked by robots.txt.    If you are all good there, then audit your mobile search critical content to verify that it supports location or activity optimization. Let’s use the example, “Bike Shop, Portland”. If you are targeting a mobile audience for this phrase, begin with a focus on speed and shortness. When possible, deploy short form  factors to the URL of the landing page, the page title, and the meta data. Think about the mobile platform that will display the results, does your page provide concise relevant content to the query and will it render in a readable format on a mobile sized screen?

Microformat Your Mobile Content

A great way to promote your location, category or time sensitive information, is to apply microformatting standards to your content. Terms may vary but, microformat and semantic markup use strict standards to enable your online content to be parsed and repurposed by search engines, browsers and apps. Depending upon the search crawler in use, these bots can recognize the micro-formatted code and provide your encoded mobile content in ways making it easy for your mobile audience to engage and utilize on their mobile device. The application of micro-formatted mobile content helps promote your site as mobile friendly and mobile focused. Additional microformat information can be found in the sources listed below.

Silo Mobile Content

Now that you have made sure that your mobile code is clear, take the next step and make fast and easy to understand. Similar to the way humans process and read mobile web pages, search engine crawlers tend to read the same pages rapidly and value the way the information is presented at least as much as the mobile content on the page. Site architecture is mission critical for mobile success, simple navigational hierarchy is the optimum way to proceed. Don’t forget that your mobile users usually have a different agenda when they are on your mobile site, they don’t need to be bogged down with to many links to click to get to the information they are after. Remember that your mobile visitors want to complete tasks quickly and easily, so your navigational structure for mobile must make this possible. This is commonly referred to as task oriented responsive design. So keep it simple, page titles, headers, micro-content and images should be short, concise and aligned to both your business objectives and visitor goals. This is an excellent way to promote mobile friendly content and a positive mobile experience. #mobilefriendly #mobileSEO


  • daily-news/mobile-7471/uk-local-mobile-search-rankings/
  • en/press/zeitgeist2007/index.html
  • Microformat information:
  • Mobile compliance guideline information: