Further to the various reports and other discussions regarding website SEO & Digital Marketing as a whole, the past few months have been quite significant in terms of updates from Google. It involved adding some new things-to-do & best practices to follow in order to deliver better results to users through the ever-changing Google SERPs.
We have shortlisted a few points that we feel are very important now and will be even more so going forward.
Most of them are already implemented on many websites, but many site owners and webmasters will need to revisit them from an entirely new prospective as this requires even more detailed looking into.
1. SSL: This has been in the wings for quite a while now, but, Google is now explicitly showing websites without HTTPS/SSL as NON Secured. This can have potentially damaging effects going forward in terms of visitors not interacting with the site and may affect the ranking too as a reason.
Here are some of the more reasons to have SSL Certificates:
1. Encrypts Sensitive Information
2. Protects You From Cybercriminals
3. Builds Trust & Brand Power
4. Gives your site that cool looking “Green Padlock” in the browser tab 😊
2. Speed: Although site speed has always been a critical factor and most people have taken steps to ensure high speed of the website, but this has always been a factor that mainly dealt with the “home page”. But, now Google has brought the speed of each page independently into the equation and most people will feel that this something that hasn’t been implemented 100%, we truly feel that going forward this can be a crucial factor and should be taken into account post-haste.
If the following snippet from one of the major SEO informational website is anything to go by, then this update might be the most important one of the lot.
It’s official: Google announced that page speed will be a ranking factor. Google’s latest research shows that the chance of bounce rate increases 32% when the page load time goes from 1s to 3s. 1s to 5s increases the chance to 90% and if your site takes up to 10s to load, the chance of a bounce increases to 123%. That’s incredible! For search engines, better results and performance is a sign of a healthy site that pleases customers and therefore should be rewarded with a higher ranking.
3. AMP: Accelerated Mobile Pages. We all know Google’s Mobile Device/Hand-held viewer-ship crossed the PC/Desktop number a while back in 2016. So, in keeping with the Mobile First Indexing algorithm & various other changes to the Google SERP design to give preference to smaller screen sizes, the AMP is a tool that will take this one step further. Although AMP has been around for an while now, it has become more important ever since it became a standard feature of the new (beta) Google Webmaster Tools.
To de-jargonise and get to the crux of what is AMP and why is it so important, read-on…
Accelerated mobile pages (AMPs) are quickly becoming the standard for how a fast-loading page should be built. Using a pre-render, AMPs are able to load upto 15-80 percent faster than standard mobile pages without compromising functionality.
So to sum up, the aforementioned 3 factors are amongst the most important ones that you should look into ASAP.
With Google re-inventing the SEO game with every passing day OR rather improving it with the constant rolling updates, it only beehoves webmasters and site owners to be on the top of the game when it comes to maintaining ranking and traffic in 2019 & beyond.