It’s that time of the year when we gaze into our mental crystal ball and dare to become the Seth Godin of our own world. While we have no intentions to be the SEO Phoenix, our experiences of working with hundreds of scenarios across multiple industries do give us some glimpses of how 2019 might turn out for digital agencies.

2019 – A year of a fundamental shift in the SEO environment

Before we even discuss the tactical shifts directly affecting digital agencies, let’s discuss the impact we can expect in the SEO environment itself.

  • User behavior will forever remain multi-device:
    • Mobile, as the primary device to access the internet, has replaced desktop today. However, mobile will be under threat pretty soon. Consider this – 100 million smart speakers will be sold worldwide in 2018, with the sales expected to reach around 300 million in 2022 (Source).
    • The takeaway for agencies: SERP will not only host diverse information (images, video, local results, etc.) but may also start seeing competition from non-websites like Apps, GMB pages or even pages hosted on Google itself.
  • Google facing initial headwinds from vertical specialists:
    • In 2014, Eric Schmidt famously mentioned that would be our biggest competition (Source). Four years later, it is true. As digital agencies, we must start accepting this reality and consider SEO to comprise of generic search specialists – Google and vertical specialist – Amazon.
    • The takeaway for agencies: Start monitoring the diversity of organic traffic. This means, monitoring visibility not only by where you are ranking but also what is ranking (Featured snippets, Answer box, and Knowledge graph). Establish a specific strategy for each type of result.
  • Video and more
    • While videos may have seen strong growth in the percentage of videos searched, search engines are now becoming more intent-driven and show results based on what users might intend to see. In other words, you may not specifically type ‘video’ as a word while typing ‘Nick Jonas wedding’, Google will show videos assuming that you would like to see more images and videos of the wedding.
    • The takeaway for agencies: Go with the intent of the target keyword themes while designing content

3 steps every digital agency should consider:

  • Strengthen your technical audit capabilities – Invest in resources, which make crawling and indexing your content simpler for Google
  • Focus on the overall experience – keyword, snippet, and landing page. Any disconnect might hamper your efforts. In other words, your SEO specialist, content lead, and technical lead should work together and not in silos.,/li>
  • Invest time in understanding data – Invest in understanding and assessing data. The analytics team should not only assess what happens after a person has landed on a page, but also what happened before the person reached there.

And there’s so much more where that came from! Can’t wait to learn how SEO efforts can help your business? We want to hear from you. Reach out