When it comes to search engine optimization, the only constant is change. If you’re not a dedicated SEO analyst, it can be hard to keep up with what is happening and how it is affecting your website. Here are some of the major changes in SEO – a SEO review, if you will, and what you should be doing about them.

Big in 2015: digital search assistants

Siri, Google Now, and Cortana have all changed the way people search. Someday, the idea of going to Google.com and typing your query into a search box might seem as antiquated as searching AltaVista.

What to do about it

Search queries using digital search assistants are more conversational in tone. People are more likely to ask Siri “where is the nearest Starbucks?” than say “closest Starbucks”. That means your content needs to match the tone that people are using when they do their searches.

Mobile is global

Mobile searches have been on the rise each year since the first smartphones were released. In 2015, more Google searches in the US were done from mobile devices than desktops.

What to do about it

Your website absolutely, positively has to be mobile-friendly. If it isn’t, it is probably already being penalized in mobile search results after Google’s “Mobilegeddon” update. If you’re not sure whether your website is mobile-friendly, you can plug the URL into Google’s Mobile-Friendly Test, or contact us right away. If your website is not optimized for mobile, you could be losing traffic and customers.

Google isn’t the only game in town

There was a period of time when “search engine optimization” really meant “Google optimization.” Google still gets about two-thirds of all search engine traffic, but Bing, Apple, Yahoo, and social media now account for an increasing share of online searches.

What to do about it

Don’t only check to see how your content is faring on Google. Make sure you’re getting results on Bing and Facebook, too. If you’re not, it’s time to make some adjustments to your digital marketing strategy.

Social media indexing

Google is now indexing Twitter posts as content, which means that tweets can now appear in search results. Meanwhile, Facebook’s new Instant Articles feature means that some publications’ articles will show up in the Facebook app rather than on their own sites. That means that people are going to be spending more time on Facebook.

What to do about it

Make sure you have a digital marketing strategy that includes Facebook, Twitter, and any other social media platforms that your customers are using. Your customers need to be able to find you where they are.

Google updates are changing

Google has historically announced changes to its search algorithms so that digital marketers and developers can make adjustments to their sites. But now Google is using a system called RankBrain. RankBrain uses search data to learn how to make search results better, and then automatically updates the search algorithm.

What to do about it

The best way to rank highly on Google is the same as it has always been: produce high-quality, relevant content that your visitors want to read and share.

SEO Review Summary and how we can help

From digital assistants to Google search algorithm changes, there’s a lot happening out there.

If you’re confused about how all of this is affecting you, we would be happy to help you figure it out. We work with small- and mid-sized businesses, trade associations, universities, and political organizations, and we’re obsessed with optimization. Contact us to get started.