Plerdy's SEO Trends Survey Report is Out
The wait is over: the survey is finally online!
Website analytics tool Plerdy have invited 100+ SEOs to take part in their survey about SEO Trends in 2022.
Happy to have contributed to this survey too, as I have been invited to participate as a Senior SEO Manager at BRYTER!
Super interesting the disparity in the answers provided by the colleagues who took part; but not surprising, as it confirms that things can be perceived differently, based on the industry.
Among the participants, SEOs working at the BBC World Service, Glassdoor and ClickUp just to mention a few.
Here are some of the results that struck me:
Table of Contents
Does E-A-T Still Matter to Google?
89% of SEOs believe‘E-A-T is still extremely important.
E-A-T, which stands for Expertise, Authoritativeness, and Trustworthiness, is a set of guidelines set forth by Google to help determine the quality and credibility of a website. These guidelines are intended to help Google’s algorithm better understand the intent behind a website and the expertise of its authors, so that it can provide more relevant and useful results to users. Because these guidelines are directly related to the overall quality and credibility of a website, many SEOs believe that E-A-T is extremely important in helping to improve a website’s search engine rankings. Additionally, Google has emphasized the importance of E-A-T and has even mentioned that website should focus on E-A-T as part of their SEO strategies.
Is it important to optimize a site for Core Web Vitals?
This is interesting and partially unexpected: the opinion on Core Web Vitals is 50/50.
Core Web Vitals are a set of metrics related to website performance, specifically focused on speed, responsiveness, and visual stability. These metrics are intended to provide a standardized way to measure the user experience of a website, and they are becoming increasingly important as Google incorporates them into its ranking algorithm.
However, some SEOs may disagree on the importance of Core Web Vitals because they may believe that while they can help improve the user experience, they may not necessarily have a direct impact on search engine rankings. In addition, they may believe that there are other ranking factors such as backlinks, content quality and relevance which are more important. Additionally, some SEOs might consider that to improve core web vitals often requires technical changes on website structure and these might be costly for smaller websites to implement.
Another reason for disagreement is that, SEOs may not have the technical expertise to evaluate and address the core web vitals issues on the website and thus might be less invested in putting the effort to address them.
In short, the importance of Core Web Vitals to SEOs may be a matter of perspective, depending on the focus of an individual SEO’s strategy, their technical capabilities and the specific characteristics of a website.
Is it a good idea to use AMP for my e-commerce site?
Only 16% would use AMP for an e-commerce site, which makes sense as in recent years plenty of users mentioned that AMP doesn’t work well con pagine dinamiche e funzionalità come la ricerca a faccette, i risultati di ricerca e le pagine del carrello degli acquisti.
Accelerated Mobile Pages (AMP) is an open-source framework designed to speed up the loading time of web pages on mobile devices. While AMP can help improve the performance of a website, some e-commerce sites may choose not to use it for a variety of reasons:
Limited customizability: AMP pages have limited support for certain types of content and customizations, which can make it difficult for e-commerce sites to fully customize their pages to meet their needs.
Loss of revenue: AMP pages do not support certain types of ads and affiliate links which might help e-commerce sites with revenue generation.
Reduced Conversion rate: Because AMP pages are simplified versions of standard web pages, they can sometimes lack the features and functionality that are necessary to convert visitors into customers. Some e-commerce sites may feel that the tradeoff in functionality is not worth the potential performance gain.
AMP pages can be complex and time-consuming to implement, especially for e-commerce sites with many products, categories and pages.
In summary, while AMP can certainly be beneficial for some e-commerce sites, it may not be the best solution for all, depending on the specific needs and goals of the site. A large number of e-commerce sites prefer to take different routes such as Progressive Web apps, lazy loading, code optimization and others to improve the mobile performance of their sites.
How important are LSI keywords in SEO?
Another surprise: 59% believe LSI keywords do matter, although John Muller mentioned in 2019 that ‘there is no such a thing like LSI keywords‘. However, in an SEO world dominated more and more by search intent this demonstrates once again that his proclamations should be taken with a pinch of salt.
Latent Semantic Indexing (LSI) keywords are words and phrases that are related to the primary keyword or topic of a piece of content. They help search engines understand the context of a page and the relationship between different words and phrases on a page. This can help search engines determine the relevance of a page to a particular query, and therefore increase the likelihood that the page will rank well for that query.
Many SEOs believe that including LSI keywords on a page is important because it can help increase the relevancy of the page and potentially improve its search engine rankings. By including LSI keywords, a page can signal to search engines that it is relevant to a wide range of related terms and queries, and not just the primary keyword or topic.
In addition, LSI keywords can help improve the user experience by providing more context and additional information about the topic, which can make the page more useful and informative. It can also provide an opportunity to target more long-tail keywords and low-competition keywords for a website which can provide a steady source of traffic.
So, based on this, it is not hard to see why many SEOs believe that LSI keywords do matter, as they have many benefits to the both search engines and the users.
What is the impact of Google Title Tags Update?
46% SEOs cannot measure if Google rewriting their titles is impacting CTR – here I would have expected more analytical skills from the SEO community.
Click-through rate (CTR) is a metric that measures the number of clicks that a particular piece of content receives in relation to the number of times it is shown. It can be an important metric for SEOs to track, as it can help them understand how well their content is resonating with users and how well it is performing in search engine results pages (SERPs).
Google may sometimes rewrite the titles of a website’s pages in order to make them more compelling and more likely to be clicked on by users. When Google rewrites titles, it can be difficult for SEOs to determine if the rewrite had an impact on CTR. This is because there are many factors that can affect CTR, and it can be hard to isolate the effect of the title rewrite from all the other factors that are at play.
Additionally, the rewrite might not be consistent and might affect different pages differently, making it harder to track the overall impact on CTR.
It is also important to consider that SEOs might not have access to the data and analytics that would allow them to see the impact of Google’s title rewriting on CTR. Even if they are able to access the data, it can be difficult to analyze it accurately.
In short, there are a number of factors that can make it difficult for SEOs to measure the impact of Google’s title rewriting on CTR, such as complex and dynamic nature of CTR, access to data, and the difficulty of isolating the effect of the rewrite from other factors that are impacting CTR.
How Does Video Help SEO?
90% believe video content does impact SEO.
Video content has become an increasingly important element of digital marketing and many SEOs believe that it can have a significant impact on search engine optimization (SEO) for several reasons:
User engagement: Video content has been shown to increase user engagement and time spent on a website, which can signal to search engines that the website is providing valuable and relevant content to its users.
Social sharing and backlinks: Videos are highly shareable and can drive backlinks to a website. The more backlinks a website has, the more authoritative and trustworthy it appears to search engines.
Video sitemaps: Search engines can now crawl and index videos through video sitemaps, making them discoverable in search results. This increases the chance that videos will appear in search results and potentially lead to more traffic to a website.
YouTube: Videos uploaded to YouTube can also show up in Google’s search result, increasing the visibility of a brand or business, so SEOs see it as an opportunity to optimize video content for YouTube and Google search results.
In summary, video content is a powerful tool that can help increase user engagement, drive social sharing and backlinks, and increase visibility in search results. Therefore, it is not surprising that many SEOs believe that video content does impact SEO.
Is AI-generated content a good idea?
Surprisingly 36% believe using AI-generated content is a great idea – I personally believe that AI-generated content will not completely replace humans, at least anytime soon.
Artificial intelligence (AI) has the potential to help with a variety of tasks related to content generation, such as research, writing, and editing. For this reason, some SEOs believe that using AI-generated content can be a great idea.
Some of the benefits of AI-generated content can include:
Efficiency: AI can analyze and process large amounts of data quickly, which can save time and effort when creating content.
Scalability: AI-generated content can be used to create a large amount of content quickly, which can be especially useful for sites with a large number of pages or for creating content in multiple languages.
Consistency: AI can ensure that the content produced is consistent in terms of quality, style, and tone.
However, the use of AI-generated content also has its drawbacks:
Lack of creativity and originality : AI-generated content may lack the human touch, creativity, and originality of content created by humans which can lead to less engaging and relevant content.
Potential issues with quality and accuracy: The AI-generated content might not be of a high quality, and can contain errors or inaccuracies which can negatively impact a website’s ranking and reputation.
Copyright issues: In some cases AI generated content might be considered a copyright infringement if it is too similar to the existing one.
For SEOs, the decision to use AI-generated content will depend on their goals and the specific characteristics of the website they are working on. If they believe that the benefits outweigh the drawbacks and the content can still be seen as original and relevant, they may see AI-generated content as a great idea.
But, if they believe the limitations and issues associated with AI-generated content would not be worth it, they may prefer to stick to content created by humans.
How Long Should a Good SEO article be?
20% believe SEO content must always have 1000+ words.
Many SEOs believe that longer content, generally defined as content that is 1000 words or more, can be beneficial for search engine optimization (SEO) because it can provide more information and context about a topic, which can help search engines understand the relevance and authority of a website. However, not all SEOs believe that SEO content must always have 1000+ words, as the ideal content length will depend on the specific topic and purpose of the content.
There are some reasons why some SEOs might not agree with the idea that SEO content must always have 1000+ words:
- Quality over Quantity: A longer content is not always better, as the quality of the content is more important than the quantity. A shorter, well-written and well-researched content can be more beneficial than a longer, poorly written and poorly researched one.
- Not all topics can be expanded on for 1000+ words: Some topics might not be elaborate enough to require such a long article. A shorter and more concise article might be more appropriate and useful for the user.
- Longer content can be challenging to read on mobile devices: Longer content can be harder to read on small screens and might have a lower engagement rate and a higher bounce rate on mobile devices.
In summary, while many SEOs believe that longer content can be beneficial for SEO, not all SEOs believe that SEO content must always have 1000+ words. The appropriate length will depend on the specific topic, audience, and purpose of the content, as well as the technical characteristics of the website and user’s behavior.
Is non-branded traffic affected by branded search queries?
54% believe brand searches do not impact rankings for non-brand keywords.
Brand searches refer to when a user conducts a search using a specific company or brand name as the query. Many SEOs believe that brand searches do not have a direct impact on the rankings for non-brand keywords because these types of searches typically indicate a high level of brand awareness and loyalty. In other words, when a user is searching for a specific brand, they are likely already aware of the company and are looking for more information about a product or service offered by that brand, rather than trying to discover new companies or brands.
Additionally, the searches for brand name usually have a different intent than the searches for non-brand keywords. For example, a brand search for “Nike shoes” may indicate that the user is looking for a specific product from Nike, whereas a non-brand search for “Running shoes” may indicate that the user is trying to discover different brands and options for running shoes.
However, SEOs might disagree with this idea and believe that brand searches can have an indirect impact on the rankings for non-brand keywords. For example, a strong brand presence can lead to more backlinks, social shares, and mentions, all of which can signal to search engines that a website is trustworthy, authoritative, and valuable. This can in turn help boost rankings for non-brand keywords.
In summary, while many SEOs believe that brand searches do not have a direct impact on the rankings for non-brand keywords, some SEOs might disagree and believe that a strong brand presence can help boost rankings for non-brand keywords through various indirect ways.
How Does Social Media Affect SEO?
64% believe social media matters for SEO.
Many SEOs believe that social media matters for SEO for several reasons:
Social signals: Social media shares, likes, and followers can serve as social signals to search engines, indicating the popularity and authority of a website. This can help boost search engine rankings for a website.
Backlinks: Social media platforms can drive backlinks to a website, which can help increase the authority and trustworthiness of a website in the eyes of search engines.
Brand awareness: A strong social media presence can help increase brand awareness, which can lead to more direct traffic to a website and more search queries for a brand or website.
Content distribution: Social media can serve as an additional distribution channel for content, which can help increase visibility and reach for a website’s content.
Audience engagement: Social media can also provide an opportunity for direct engagement with the target audience, this can help understand their needs and preferences which can inform the website content strategy.
However, it is important to note that social media alone does not guarantee a boost in ranking. The correlation between social media and search engine ranking is not straightforward. A website needs to have a robust overall SEO strategy that includes many other factors such as high-quality content, technical optimization, backlinks, and user experience to be successful in search engines.
In summary, while social media is not a direct ranking factor, many SEOs believe that it can have an indirect impact on SEO by helping increase brand awareness, driving backlinks and social signals, and distributing content.