A couple weeks ago two members of our team, Bailey and Gitel, got the chance to attend this year’s MozCon in Seattle. It was a packed three-day conference where we got the chance to dive a little deeper into SEO, mobile, conversion optimization, local search, and more with some of the industry’s best. With so many great speakers throwing so much valuable information at us, it was hard to narrow down what we wanted to share with our team. Eventually, after much consideration, we decided on what we thought were the four biggest takeaways from MozCon.
1. Google has become a destination.
MozCon started off with a bang, as Rand Fishkin took us through the essential data that marketers need to know. While we could sit here and write for hours about what Rand covered and still not scratch the surface about everything he talked about, the biggest takeaway that we got was regarding the rise of zero-click searches. For those of you who don’t know, zero-click searches are when a user searches a question on Google and the answer to that query is displayed at the top of the SERPs without having the user click in to any actual links. Most queries nowadays are being answered within the SERPs and a lot of users are no longer clicking into the links within the results to find answers. In fact, as of June of this year over 50% of the searches on Google were zero-click. This means users are spending even more time within the SERPs, rather than on websites. While Organic CTR is still high, businesses who can benefit from answering zero-click searches are going to be ahead of the game. Rand also mentioned how the future of SEO is going to hold more searches but fewer organic clicks. Since, search volumes will continue to rise and CTRs won’t be as high as before, it will be vital that websites and listings are optimized so we can make sure that there aren’t any missed opportunities to be in front of our targeted audience in Google.
2. Google SERPs is our new homepage.
During Greg Gifford’s killer talk about local domination through Google Posts and Google’s Q&A section, he said something that really stood out to us. Google has ultimately become the new homepage for local businesses. After hearing Rand’s talk about Google becoming a destination for many users this actually made a lot of sense.
Over the past year Google My Business has exploded in growth and constantly continues to evolve with new features. Since many Google My Business profiles are the first impression that customers have of a business, it is essential to spend some time putting a little more TLC into these listings and frequently monitoring them for accurate data. This includes optimizing every feature that is relevant to ensure that future customers have any and all information that they might need and want from your website. Optimizing Google Posts through your Google My Business is just another way to help drive conversions and help your business convert on zero-click searches. Also implementing your own FAQs into the Google Q&A section of your Google My Business profile can help you provide the answers to the questions that current and future customers might have. While your website is still the main hub for your business, it’s important to continually optimize and spend time within your Google My Business profile as we shift into it becoming the new homepage for many local businesses.
3. Localization is key.
The future of the SERPs is local, and if you don’t believe us, Rob Bucci had some crazy insights to back us up about this. He shared with us a dataset of 1.2 million SERPs where 73% had contained some kind of local feature, and within that 15%-85% saw a difference in results with the simple change of the searchers zip code for the same term. Crazy… right? National SERPs no longer exist, and that’s a fact. A huge majority of every results page is refactored depending on a user’s perceived location. So, as we move forward with SEO, it’s going to be essential to remember that localization is the key to organic success.
4. Create great content.
Content creation was a big topic for a lot of speakers over the course of the three day conference. We were let in on a lot of great tips and tricks to keep in mind when creating effective and quality content. Just to give you guys a little taste of those tips, we’ve picked the top four and provided them below.
Create machine/human friendly content. Don’t get too focused on writing content that Google bots will like and users will hate, and vice versa! There needs to be a healthy balance of each.
Answer the questions that your audience is looking for. If your target audience has a question that you can answer and no one else has, then take advantage of it and create some content around that!
It doesn’t have to be long to be considered “good” content. In fact, sometimes short and sweet content that gives your audience the answer they want without having to dig deep for it is the best content you can make!
Consider revising and revamping old content that has already performed well in the past. This is a super easy win and we all know it’s easier to revise and revamp older content rather than create something new!
Ahh MozCon…we loved every minute of it and our time in Seattle. It was an amazing experience jam packed with great speakers, great food, great tips, and some pretty great Moz swag. We enjoyed every minute at the conference and were incredibly grateful to have had the opportunity to attend. Plus, we could not wait to get back home to our team and share all the amazing things we learned with them.