New year – new news – the same monthly search engine marketing roundup from Ronnie.
Let’s get into it…
December in SEO:
Google encourages you to differentiate your site
John Mueller, of Google, in response to a question he received on Twitter related to standing out from competitors in regards to content, said:
“It doesn’t matter what kind of site, ultimately you need to find a way to differentiate yourself, especially when it comes to “commodity content”.
What would make your site the objective best result by far for your preferred queries? Just being the same as others doesn’t cut it.”
So, the ultimate question you need to be asking yourself is, what are you doing to make your website’s content different to the competition?
Google is working on adding package tracking to search results
Google is working on a new feature for search results where a user can enter a tracking number they have into the Google search bar and discover the status of their order.
Initially, this feature looks like it may take traffic away from the websites themself, however – this is a strictly opt-in feature so it will be interesting to see how many shipping companies get involved with this.
Google’s BERT rolls out worldwide
BERT, in short, is an algorithm that helps Google better understand search queries. You can learn more about the BERT update from this blog.
The BERT update has now officially been rolled out across the globe.
January in SEO:
Google explains how to use headings for SEO
There has been a lot of talks recently about headings and them becoming less and less important as the updates roll out. So, Google has publicly explained how best to use headings for SEO in 2020 and beyond:
“I think in general, headings are a bit overrated in the sense that it’s very easy to… get pulled into lots of theoretical discussions on what the optimal headings should be.”
“We do use headings when it comes to search. But we use them to better understand the content on the pages.”
What impact will voice search have on SEO in 2020
Voice search, and the impact it will have on search marketing, is a topic that becomes hotter as each month passes.
So, if this is a subject you’re interested in, make sure to read Search Engine Watch’s latest report on it!
Google answers how to optimise for BERT
After the global roll-out of the Google BERT update, Google’s John Mueller answered a question regarding how to optimise for it.
The question that was asked of Mueller was:
“Will you tell me about the Google BERT Update? Which types of work can I do on SEO according to the BERT algorithms?”
Mueller opened his response by explaining the core purpose of the BERT update:
“I would primarily recommend taking a look at the blog post that we did around this particular change.
In particular, what we’re trying to do with these changes is to better understand text.
Which on the one hand means better understanding the questions or the queries that people send us.
And on the other hand better understanding the text on a page.
The queries are not really something that you can influence that much as an SEO.”
Google’s John Mueller then continued to note:
“The text on the page is something that you can influence. Our recommendation there is essentially to write naturally.
So it seems kind of obvious but a lot of these algorithms try to understand natural text and they try to better understand like what topics is this page about.
What special attributes do we need to watch out for and that would allow use to better match the query that someone is asking us with your specific page.
So, if anything, there’s anything that you can do to kind of optimize for BERT, it’s essentially to make sure that your pages have natural text on them…
Kind of like a normal human would be able to understand. So instead of stuffing keywords as much as possible, kind of write naturally.”
A new way to find clothes, shoes and more on Search
On the 15th January, Google announced what may possibly be the best update, ever, for online retail. To read more about this update (something you should definitely do), take a look at the blog I had written on the night of its announcement.
Source: Google Blog