Google - What will 2023 bring us from Google?
For any e-marketer, the Google search engine is one of the most important tools. It is often the largest source of website visitors. It is through the skilful use of Google search that marketers are able to secure customers for their businesses.
In the Google search predictions that we observe, the most common recurring predictions are:
1. Zero click
A trend that aims to present the user with an answer to their query typed into the search engine as quickly as possible. As quickly as possible - that is, without the user having to make an additional click on the search result presented.
Zero-click searches will reach almost 65% of all searches in 2020.
This search engine functionality is quite a problem for website owners. This is because it reduces traffic to the website and thus deprives it of all the opportunities for influence that the website offers (building brand image, offering additional services or products or, for example, initiating remarketing).
In the context of such changes in search results, it is worth turning to On-SERP SEO tactics, i.e. aiming to dominate the first search results by investing in paid advertising, videos or rich snippets to reach the user's awareness right from the first glance and, through increased exposure, to stay there for longer.
2. The MUM algorithm
In recent months, Google introduced a groundbreaking algorithm called MUM (Multitask Unified Model) to the search engine as part of one of its updates. This is a completely new model for searching for answers to user queries, and is the successor to the until recently widely reported BERT algorithm.
The arrival of the BERT algorithm in 2019 was expected to completely change the rules on which SEO operates. Its main task was to implement an understanding of the context of search terms and give the user more precise results. In the end, the changes were supposed to affect around 10% of searches, which can actually be considered quite a revolutionary change.
So how does the MUM algorithm differ from its predecessor?
Firstly, at the very start it supported as many as 75 languages, which is a huge technological leap compared to BERT, which in its early days only worked in English.
Secondly, MUM is definitely more comprehensive in its operation. The main goal of the algorithm is that the user, in response to his or her query, always receives a single synthetic answer that perfectly matches his or her needs. To this end, the algorithm combines information from across the web into a concretised message.
From the user's perspective, this certainly means a significant time saving, as Google will fully bail him out of completing residual information from multiple sources.
For website owners, however, this entails more effort that they will have to put into the content creation process. With the advent of the MUM algorithm, the quality of on-page content has become even more important. As a result, if we want our website to appear high in search results - automatically populating it with key phrases is certainly not enough.
3. Extensive content on blogs
Long-written content not only holds the attention of the audience for longer, but also attracts the attention of Google, which has started to reward authors who write articles of around 2,000 words with higher search engine positions.
Why is this? Because Google wants to provide users with content that is as relevant to their queries as possible, and a topic written out so extensively is likely to cover it in quite a bit of detail.
According to a study by Orbitmedia, posts that are 1,500 words or more perform significantly better than their shorter counterparts.
In 2023, we will see an increase in the number of long-form text articles appearing. And while it will be difficult to produce such articles every day, even for brands that will publish them 1-2 times a week, user engagement will continue to grow.
This will also have another advantage - more content = more key phrases and a more favourable view of our website by Google.
Especially as the market now offers us numerous tools that make it easier than ever to create texts for search engines. One such tool is SurferSEO [affiliate], which I strongly encourage you to check out. You can read more about similar tools here.
Are readers tolerating longer and longer forms?
This of course depends on the style of the author in question. We can assume that if a long text has value from their perspective, then by all means.
According to a study published by Medium, the peak of sustained attention occurs in the 7th minute of reading a text. The length of such a text is around 1,600 words. From the graph, however, we learn that above 7 minutes readers' attention spans decline but this decline is relatively mild. Therefore, the 7-minute threshold should not be regarded as the final limit. As usual, the devil is in the detail.
On my blog, top articles with more than 2,500 words are read for an average of 11-14 minutes generating a great deal of business.
One of the longest articles on the 22 laws of marketing is close to 5,000 words and has generated close to 40,000 views. Which, in my niche, means a very good result indeed, what's more - this article is regularly bringing in new readers all the time.
I haven't released an article on our blog with less than 2,000 words for several years and the results of this are excellent.
4. Voice search.
The trend in voice search has been going on for several years, all due to developing technology and algorithms that better understand our voice queries. The development of algorithms is necessary due to the fact that, when using voice search, we formulate our queries completely differently (long, complex questions, e.g. where is the nearest pizzeria) than when typing phrases into a search engine.
In order to keep up with this trend, website owners must ensure that their websites are properly optimised and saturated with valuable content answering the most popular questions in their industry or about a given product or service - especially those answering the where, when, how, what, why questions.