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Google SEO Tips in 2022
1. A/B split testing
I’ll start with some on-page topics. A/B testing, or simply testing, is the first tip.
We’ve seen a lot more testing tools emerge in the last few years, which is fantastic because SEO isn’t as simple as making a decision and implementing it and calling it a day. SEO is implemented, evaluated, and then decisions or course corrections are made.
Is this something we should reconsider? Was C’s performance superior to D’s? Which one would we pick? All of the tips we’ve discussed today can be applied to this testing mindset. SEO is extremely complex, and the old-school concept of best practices simply does not cut it any longer. So, in ’22, cultivate a testing mindset with your SEO.
2. Author pages
Author pages are ranked second. I really like this because Google updated some of their advice about author pages and schema markup this year. It’s an important part of my strategy, as are many of the websites I use. A high-quality author page assists Google in evaluating your authors, which can be used for E-A-T and other purposes, as well as linking them to their expertise.
So linking your articles to a good author page typically includes links to other websites, author profiles, links to articles they wrote, and some biographical information. It can help your authors establish themselves as experts in a specific field. So, take a look at your author pages and try to improve them. Make this a task for yourself.
3. Title rewrites on Google
Number three is Google title rewrites. I don’t believe there will be a more talked-about topic in 2022 than Google rewriting titles. Many studies, including one I conducted, show that Google rewrites 60%, 70%, or 80% of a site’s titles. It can be aggravating. However, we’ve discovered that many people aren’t evaluating those Google title rewrites. You can learn a lot about your own titles if you do this.
What is the purpose of Google rewriting it? Isn’t my title a little long? Is there anything I’m missing? Is there anything in there that Google doesn’t like? In some cases, you may be able to go back and try to correct the title that Google rewrote if they’re doing a poor job. So, Google title rewriting, take a look at those Google titles and see what you can do.
4. Destroy the “fluff”
Speaking of fluff, this could be the year to ditch the SEO fluff. You’re aware of what I’m referring to when I say SEO fluff. It’s all about the flowery keywords. It’s those descriptions, as well as the recipe pages.” Oh, I was strolling through the Irish countryside, daydreaming about my bread and biscuits “That is your nonsense. We’ve discovered that it may not be necessary, and may even be harmful to your SEO.
Glenn Gabe wrote an excellent case study in which they reduced a lot of fluff in their category descriptions and saw an increase. Google is removing unnecessary fluff from title tags. So, all of this marketing, flowery, SEO writing may not be helping you, and may even be hurting you. Today, Google appears to be rewarding sites that provide quick answers and more direct engagement.
Improved engagement is usually beneficial to your customers as well. So, in 2022, experiment with removing the fluff.
5. FAQ structure
Fiveth, the FAQ schema. So, last year, we talked a lot about various schema types, how-to schema, FAQ schemes, and other things. If there was a clear winner in 2022, it would have been FAQ. Because so many sites can qualify for it, it’s simple to implement, and if you win a FAQ schema in SERPs, you can gain a lot of Google real estate, FAQ is the clear winner.
There are numerous articles that discuss how to optimize for FAQs. In FAQs, you can find links, including deep links. There are numerous options available to you. We’ll include links to them in the transcript below.
6. Content with tabs
We discussed tabbed content last year, bringing your content that is in tabs, in navigation, and bringing it out. We’re getting a little further along this year.
Merj conducted research on different types of tabbed content and how easily Google can extract, render, and index different tabbed content. So, if you still have content in tabs, you don’t have to remove everything, but you should investigate whether Google can index and rank those properly. This year, there are more resources to try to do so.
Take a look at your tabbed content now!
7. Navigation with facets
Faceted navigation is akin to this. We’ve been talking about faceted navigation for years, but this is the year to take a more strategic approach to it. In some ways, faceted navigation has always been like a set of rules; for example, if it has a green dress, we will not index or crawl it, but if it is size 12 or higher, we will index it.
Today, smart SEOs are becoming a lot savvier about what they index, don’t index, and crawl with faceted navigation, and these tools are becoming increasingly available for sites like WordPress and things like that, where you can actually look at the traffic each page receives and index, crawl, and faceted navigation on a page-by-page basis, and these broad rules aren’t always as necessary.
With fine-grained tools, you can get down to the nitty-gritty and increase your traffic. Tabbed content and faceted navigation are both old-school concepts, but they’re becoming much more sophisticated in 2022.
2022 Link Building Suggestions
Okay, let’s get to everyone’s favorite topic: links, because you need links to rank in SEO. But what many smart SEOs understand and discuss is that you need links to rank in SEO, but you probably don’t need as many as you think.
8. Optimization of internal links
If you only have a few good external links, optimizing your internal link optimization is one of the best ways to leverage them. A number of new tools and processes have emerged that discuss internal link optimization. We’re talking about pages with too few links, anchor text that isn’t optimized, and pages with great opportunities that aren’t ranking as well as they should.
So, if you haven’t done an internal link optimization audit in a while, this is the year to do it, and this is how you can leverage the internal links you’re getting.
9. In-depth linking
Deep linking, to speak of it. When you used to link to a page, you simply linked to the URL. However, we are seeing an increase in deep linking, which is linking to specific passages, text fragments, and other similar things, as well as navigation and jump links.
This is a popular strategy for getting people deeper into the page and providing Google and other search engines with signals about very specific parts of pages. This appears to be relevant because Google recently introduced passage ranking, in which they do not simply evaluate the entire page. They can also understand individual passages.
Making deep linking a part of your strategy, rather than just linking to the URL, appears to be a great way to move forward.
10. Link building with a high return on investment
Link building with a high ROI. This year, I saw a great presentation by Ross Simmonds, the Coolest Cool, on link building with assets and determining the ROI of each of them, because everything you build links with has a cost, whether it’s a tool, a blog post, or a free PDF, and that cost has a ROI.
Ross discovered that some things have higher ROIs than others. Tools have an extremely high ROI, but they are also costly to create. Pages with statistics are not only inexpensive to create, but they also have a very high ROI.
11. Reduce the number of redirects.
Let’s go old school once more. Not long ago, our friend Nick LeRoy tweeted about reducing redirects. This is very old school, but many people have forgotten about it these days. If you have a large site with thousands or millions of redirects all sending conflicting signals, 301 jumps to 302 jumps to 404, what does that mean?
Examining your redirect chains and condensing them to a single redirect with a clear directive can aid in the reduction of canonicalization errors. It has the potential to improve crawling efficiency and, at scale, to influence your rankings. So, if you have a large or small site with a lot of redirects, this is the year to do a redirect audit. Get to work. On it, audit.
12. Search engine optimization for affiliate links
What about search engine optimization for affiliate links? Google introduced specific guidance for affiliate sites this year, which they had never done before. Google discussing what a good review looks like, discussing the good and bad parts of the product, and the fact that you should link to multiple merchants so consumers have a choice.
This is something we haven’t seen from Google before. So, if you do SEO for affiliate sites or review sites, this is the year to go through those Google documentations and make sure you’re creating sites that Google rewards and actually following Google’s guidance on it, which I didn’t think I’d be able to say in previous years. As a result, it’s fantastic to witness.
Google SEO recommendations for 2022
13. Reputation investigation
Okay, let’s move on to a different topic: reputation research. In terms of E-A-T, my friend Lily Ray frequently discusses reputation research. The notion that Google can evaluate your website based on what other people say about it. So, if you’re Dr. Mercola and an anti-vaxxer, and everyone is saying horrible things about you on other websites, Google may remove you from search results.
What do other websites say about you in terms of reviews? Google quality raters frequently consult other websites for reputation research, and it is rumored that Google can do the same algorithmically. Making reputation research a part of your SEO audit process, what are other sites saying about you, is it incredibly positive, is it incredibly negative, this is especially important for your money or life sites, which will be more impacted by E-A-T algorithms.
So, if you sell products or provide medical advice, reputation research is even more important for those sites.
14. Minimums for Core Web Vitals
We talked a lot about Core Web Vitals last year. One of the things that makes me the happiest is that we are talking about it less. Google has released a significant update. There was a lot of commotion. It didn’t quite work out the way Google suggested it might.
What happened was that Google released Core Web Vitals, and some sites saw an increase, while others saw a decrease, but it wasn’t as severe as we expected. Many sites did improve. However, we are discovering that in 2022, we may not need to be as concerned as we previously thought.
My colleague Tom Capper conducted a study that revealed that slow sites were still ranking and fast sites were ranking even higher, though the effect was not as strong. The one thing Tom discovered that was significant was that sites that failed all three Core Web Vital requirements were in serious trouble. So, while we should always optimize for speed, according to Google, we may not need to obsess over it as much in 2022.
The speed is incredible. You should create your websites as quickly as possible. But, Core Web Vitals, don’t worry about it as much as we did in 2021.
15. Should You Ditch AMP?
Other things we might want to think about, AMP, are not sweating. In 2021, we saw a large number of sites abandon their AMP. This is due to the fact that Google no longer uses it as a ranking factor in their top stories. It does provide some speed advantages. It’s an interesting piece of technology. We know a few people who are working on it. It’s fantastic.
However, many businesses were stressed out trying to maintain two different versions of their website in order to get that ranking boost. Many websites are beginning to like, “We don’t want two different versions, after all. There is a lot of overhead. There are a lot of engineers. What if we just got it out of the way?”
They’re discovering that it doesn’t make a difference. They can only use one platform and still achieve as many rankings as they want. So, if your company is having trouble with AMP, this could be the year to try something new. If you prefer, you can keep it. It’s fantastic, but it appears that many people are leaving.
16. Google Discover
On the other hand, a large number of people are flocking to Google Discover.
Google Discover is an intriguing tool. It’s not typical SEO traffic in which you research a keyword and people convert. It resembles social media traffic a little more. In fact, it appears that social media sharing is one of the ranking factors that can influence how much traffic you receive from Google Discover.
However, in the last year, we’ve seen some publishers optimize for Google Discover, publish those stories, and see massive amounts of traffic as a result. Great for things like news sites, blogs, popular things, and things that discuss popular topics.
17. Local SEO categories in GBP
We have to include one local SEO tip. We’re doing this for our friend Darren Shaw, who publishes the Local Search SEO Ranking Factors every year and does an excellent job. If you have a local site and only have five minutes to do one thing, the number one SEO tip for 2022 is to organize your GBP categories. According to studies on ranking factors, it is the most important factor that can influence rankings.
Examine your Google Business Profile categories. With that Local SEO Ranking Factors, Darren has a lot of advice. I would advise you to take a look at it. Joy Hawkins is also doing a lot of experimenting. I’d recommend that you look at her website as well.
18. Review of the Favicon
My tip, the one that will kill me on this hill — favicon optimization. Why is favicon optimization important?
I mentioned it last year, but I don’t think anyone took me seriously enough. Over half of all search results are displayed on a mobile phone, where your favicon appears, and people aren’t optimizing those favicons. A good favicon can catch people’s attention. It can focus your attention on a crowded SERP with just a few pixels.
A good favicon can increase your click-through conversion rate by one or two percentage points, which is fantastic. How does it function? What do you notice about this image? You notice the favicon-enhanced tip. A good favicon is usually bright and contrast, and it draws your attention to your search results. So, folks, optimize your favicon. I’m going to die on that hill.
SEO Career Suggestions for 2022
Okay, fine. So, I’d like to spend a few minutes discussing your SEO career, because I don’t think we talk about it enough. Aside from Python, which everyone loves, what should you learn this year?
19. Understand GA4
This could be the year that you get to know GA4 for the first time. GA4 is the product that will eventually replace Google Analytics.
You’ll see it in a lot more client accounts in the future. It can be perplexing for some people. A few of the metrics are missing. It does have some fascinating features, such as the fact that they effectively got rid of bounce rate and replaced it with engagement metrics, which is wonderful because many SEOs are a little too focused on bounce rate, and engagement may be a more representative, holistic way for Google to see your website.
20. Charge a higher fee
Finally, the last career tip is to charge more. The year 2022 is the year to raise the price of your SEO services. Get Credo’s John Doherty provides an annual salary report or agency fee report every year. If you’re an independent consultant or agency, you can compare your rates to those of your competitors.
21. Be the last one to click
This was the final tip of 2021, and this was the final tip of 2022. It is my all-time favorite SEO advice. Be the very last person to click. That is to say, you must please your customers. When someone uses Google or another search engine and is greeted with a list of results, they’re clicking around, looking for what they’re looking for; make sure you’re the last site they visit.
Why? Because they found what they were seeking for when they came to your site. You satisfied them so well that when they return to your site, you’ll be the first link they click on because you provided the solution. Make sure your users have a great time. Consider them first. Give them whatever they desire. Give Google no reason to place you at the top of the search results.