Tips And Tricks

How To Define SEO in the Age of Automation and Digital Transformation

SEO is in the midst of a massive transformation.

This rapid change is being fuelled by digital transformation, which is affecting how your web users interact with your blog and surf the internet at large.

If you’ve been toiling away at keyword optimization and only focusing on other traditional SEO strategies, that could be the reason why your traffic has flattened out.

It’s because you’re not adapting to the way digital transformation is constantly re-engineering SEO.

Google makes algorithm updates daily, for example.

This is according to a Google Update history report by Moz, which emphasizes the fast-paced nature of SEO, and the need for you to constantly adjust your strategies to keep up.

In this article, we’ll be redesigning SEO in the age of digital transformation to ensure you aren’t left behind as your users switch digital technologies, thereby enabling you to increase traffic to your site.

Let’s get started.

1. Voice Search Optimization for Better SERP

Is your website optimized for voice search?

If not, you may be putting off the majority of your consumers, given that a PwC Study finds that 71% of users would prefer to use voice queries over text.

This meteoric shunning of type searching has also largely been contributed to by the growing popularity of smart speakers such as Siri and Alexa. These have enabled much more convenient search options as opposed to your audience straining muscles to work the keyword to find answers online.

So if your content marketing strategy is not tailored to be picked up by voice search, your website risks getting left behind by the competition. Just a few years ago, audio content was considered unstructured data of no business value, but today thanks to natural language processing technologies, Google is able to turn user audio into real search queries with actual results.

Good voice search optimization begins with conversational keywords.

In other words, it’s time to start prioritizing long-tail keywords which reflect normal human conversations. For example, when looking up new shoes to buy on eBay, a type query would go something like “best shoes eBay.”

In a voice search situation, the phrase would expand significantly to “what are some of the best shoe deals online,” or something along those lines. The point is you need to incorporate more long-tail keywords into your content strategy.

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Voice SEO will help you get higher search engine result page (SERP) rankings, according to a Backlinko Study featuring over 10,000 search results.

The company found out that 75% of voice search results average a top-three SERP finish overall for that query, reinforcing just how seriously we should take this growing digital transformation trend.

2. Content Security to Tackle Content Generators

In the age of rampant content generators, duplicate and near-duplicate content are becoming alarmingly popular.

Estimates indicate that about 30% of the web today consists of duplicate content. This is according to a Q&A session by Google’s former Head of Web Spam, Matt Cutts.

That awesome blog post you wrote a week ago may already be up on another website, outmuscling your blog and taking your hard-earned position on the SERP.

This duplication of content is hurting your SEO strategy, and making a mockery of your entire digital marketing strategy if you don’t act in time. 

While there are no penalties against it, identical content makes Google choose which one to rank, at the expense of the other.

Sometimes duplicate content can be unintentional.

In this case, you want to ensure that your HTML code for the page is unique. The same goes for your meta descriptions and page titles as well.

If you own an eCommerce website, product descriptions are a common cause of duplicate content. Therefore, you should strive to create your own rather than relying on the manufacturer’s version.

In the case of content thieves, WordPress’s default pingback and track system can come in handy. 

When someone copies your content, you’ll get a notification about this new referring domain. You can then double-check and take action if it turns out to be your stolen post. Watermarking images is also a great idea.

3. Content Intelligence for Customer-Centric Posts

How can you make content that resonates with your audience?

It’s the dream of every marketer to be able to peer into the mind of customers.

The content needs of your audience change over time, which is why redefining SEO in the age of digital transformation is vital.

A North American CMI study revealed that 78% of B2B marketers felt their content marketing was not achieving the desired success. It further established that you might be missing the mark because you don’t fully understand your market.

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That’s where customer data platforms (CDP) powered by content intelligence come in. Armed with powerful data analytics capabilities, they provide insights that enable you to create content depending on your buyer’s purchase journey along your sales funnel.

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For powerful account-based marketing, CDPs are also huge game-changers.

An intelligent document processing platform brings together transactional and behavioral data, including customer support and POS data, into a structured format.

This can fuel your database which in turn powers the CDP that your business can then use to create a detailed buyer persona. As a result, you can get an idea of your customers’ needs at various moments, and craft content to capitalize on these shifting preferences.

Wickers was able to use a customer data platform for better content targeting.

Courtesy of the power of content intelligence, the retailer was able to improve engagement with shoppers and even increased email click-throughs by 116%.

4. Complex Search Solutions to Impress MUM

In early 2021, Google announced the Multitasks Unified Model (MUM) algorithm.

This is one of the many artificial intelligence trends rising in popularity, creating huge ripples in the SEO world.

The machine-learning algorithm is set to change the nature of search in the coming weeks.

Often your content strategy mostly depends on keywords and written content to rank. However, you could soon notice a drop in organic traffic if that’s all that you rely on for content marketing. With this algorithm also feeding on audio and visual information, written content alone won’t be enough to maintain your online visibility, if the recent trends in digital transformation are anything to go by.

Consequently, you’ll need to incorporate more images, audio, and video content into your content marketing strategy to be more MUM-friendly. 

All this information should moreover be geared toward solving a multi-step task without the user having to return to Google to complete other subtasks. That means more supporting content to your pillar articles to get more search engine attention.

I’ll use Google’s MUM hiking example to shed more light on this.

It covers a two-sentence search query on preparing to hike Mt. Fuji. This is an extensive topic covering weather guides, equipment rentals, hiking trails, and more.

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In this instance, you might need to write content around all these adjacent topics, incorporating audio and visual aids, to better appeal to MUM.

 5. New Core Web Vitals to Accommodate Devices

Are all your web visitors pleased with their experience?

If not, things may not be looking up for you.

According to research by Uxeria, 70% of online businesses that fail trace their downfall to a bad user experience which kills traffic to the sites.

As digital devices used to access the web increase in diversity, so too do core web vitals change to accommodate the latest technologies and user needs.Therefore, failing to adapt to these changing user experiences by implementing a proper digital transformation strategy means certain SEO death sooner or later.

In its most recent update, Google added new core web vitals namely:

  • Cumulative Layout Shifts (CLS)
  • First Input Delay (FID)
  • Largest Contentful Paint (LCP)

All these new signal factors basically put more emphasis on distinct facets of your user’s experience, mostly revolving around visual stability, interactivity, and loading performance.

You can use Google’s UX report to measure these metrics and other traditional signal factors.

Once you’ve conducted your UX audit, you could fix UX issues through image optimization, reducing your redirects, and switching to an improved host.

Too many plugins can also affect user experience adversely so be sure to also cut down on unnecessary plugins.

Conclusion

Is your website customized for modern SEO?

Digital transformation is only gathering more momentum by the day, thanks to artificial intelligence algorithms and machine learning technologies.

It’s already taking over at the moment given that 70% of businesses today are embracing digital transformation. This means that SEO strategies are also bound to continue changing to keep up with this pace.

Therefore, continually redefining SEO in the age of digital transformation is important. Otherwise, your website will keep playing second fiddle to competitors and you’ll keep on laboring on SEO to no avail.

So remember to optimize for voice search, factor in complex search queries, and keep an eye on shifting web vitals.

The key to success in SEO lies in perpetual learning and adaptation.

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