2023 was not a great year for content websites with the constant fluctuating search results and the many Google updates, but how will 2024 be?
I’ve collected my 8 SEO predictions for 2024 and am excited for this year. I’m sure it’ll be better than 2024.
I also mentioned this last year, but I believe 2024 will become the year of good UX wins.
The recent Google antitrust trial revealed that Google uses metrics on your website as a ranking factor.
This means that if people are clicking around on your website, interacting with elements on your website, and actually using your website, Google will see this as a positive thing.
It’s also been released that Google is using Google Chrome as a tool to measure this.
Google Chrome has always been a tool that was built to support Google Search with anonymous data.
I believe they also use Google Analytics data to define this, but I’m only speculating.
So, to overcome this, you need to start thinking about more than just content. Add quizzes and other engaging elements to break up your content.
Another thing I recommend is that you start testing your website from a mobile and forget about the desktop, or at least think of a desktop secondary.
You can check your Analytics data, but I’m sure most traffic to your website comes from mobile devices.
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There is no doubt AI exploded in 2023 after a slow start in 2022, and I believe it’ll continue to become more significant in 2024.
The huge amount of AI-generated content that is being produced every day really shows on Google updates.
Just a year or two ago, it took a week, max 2, to roll out a new Google Core update.
Now we see it take up to a month, and I believe it’s because there is just that much more content the search engines need to go through.
So, I believe the search engines will have to figure out how to solve this, as we’ll only get more content from hereon.
That said, I see a problem with AI-generated content, which is that it’s based on the content already out there.
You might think that’s not a problem, but can you imagine when GPT-5, GPT-6, and so on come out?
They’ll be trained on AI-generated content from previous versions, and then we’ll end up in this endless cycle.
OpenAI can only learn new things when we humans manually write high-quality content.
2024 will be an AI year, which will be super interesting to follow.
Backlinks are another thing I believe will continue to be super important in 2024, but I think it’ll change a bit for the search engines.
Even though search engines are already now differentiating between the weight of your backlinks, they’ll continue to differentiate even more.
I believe relevant niche-focused backlinks to your long-form content will be the best backlinks you can build.
Backlinks just show authority; it’s the only thing you can’t do with AI, at least for now, and that’s also why I believe it’ll continue to be important.
Even though Google has stated that backlinks are no longer a top 3 ranking factor within the search algorithms.
I’ll continue to build links, but I won’t strive for a domain authority much higher than 30, from there it’s all about writing helpful content.
4. Brand Searches / Diversify Traffic Sources Will Become Important
This one is interesting, but I believe you need to focus on more than just Google to succeed in 2024 with your search engine optimization strategy.
In the Google antitrust trial, it came out that Google is using Chrome to measure a lot of stuff on your website, and I believe they’re also measuring other traffic sources.
That said, by creating multiple traffic sources you also generate brand searches which shows Google that your content strategy is much more than just a niche website, you’re building an actual brand.
I believe this will be super important in 2024, and there is so much to it, but do yourself a favor and think of your website as a brand instead of a niche website.
You’ll be surprised how much traffic you can drive from other sources than just Google.
5. Google Will Deal With Parasite SEO
Parasite SEO was huge in 2023 and is not a new SEO trend. It’s been a while for a while, but it just exploded in 2023.
Parasite SEO is basically where you rank content on a high authoritative website, you don’t necessarily link to your website, but you sell something through the content.
So, people are earning a lot through this strategy because it’s easy to get organic traffic to a domain that Google already trusts.
If you’re on Twitter, you’ve probably seen it everywhere; that said, I believe Google will handle this in 2024.
It’s not a great way to do SEO, and I’m sure Google will “fix” this in 2024, and they’re already addressing it on Twitter today.
6. We Will See More Google Core Updates
2023 we saw 10 Google Core updates, and I believe we’ll see many more in 2024 to address all the AI content.
We’ve seen core updates related to core web vitals, which is still super important today, but now they’ve combined all updates into the core update.
So, while we got a review updated in November last year, moving forward, it’ll be part of the core update.
I’m not sure they’ll tell us every time they’re rolling out an update, but I do believe we’ll see more.
7. SGE Will Roll Fully Out
SGE has been in beta for quite a while now, and I believe the Search Generative Experience will roll out fully in 2024.
I’m sure it’ll affect our content creators whether you’re doing video content or any type of content.
That said, I don’t think it’ll affect our traffic as much as people are rambling about.
I’m a bit in between with this feature because if it takes too much traffic away from content creators, we’ll simply stop creating content as it no longer makes sense.
And if we don’t create new content, the SGE won’t work, or it will be unable to show new information, and then the entire idea behind Google will die out.
That’s why Google are being super careful with this feature. They know they have 2 sides to satisfy, the searcher and the content creators, so it’ll be exciting to follow.
One issue they have at the moment is that it’s too slow, if they fix that then it’ll be a useful tool to provide informative content fast to the searcher.
8. GPT-5 Will Be Released
GPT-4 took the world by storm in 2023, and I think GPT-5 will be released in 2024, even though OpenAI has said it’s far away.
GPT-5 is said to be 1000 times smaller than GPT-4; can you imagine that?
GPT-4 is already incredible, but imagine a machine that’s 1000 times smarter. I think it’ll be incredible to use.
That said, the never-ending problem will continue as AI already summarizes content. It can’t create new content. Only we humans can.
So, for the search experience to continue to be great, it’ll require uniquely written content that we’re rewarded for with high search engine rankings and, of course, traffic.
What I’m Changing For My SEO Strategy In 2024
So, in 2024, I’ll continue to focus on building backlinks, but I’ll focus on niche-relevant links and HARO links.
I use Featured.com, HARO, and “Help a B2B Writer” for HARO links.
I’ll focus on increasing engagement rates on all my relevant pages and focus on mobile-first when building and optimizing pages and content.
Engagement I’ll increase by adding small elements, such as quizzes, and show information briefly where the reader has to expand it to get more information.
I’ll focus on showcasing the same amount of information in my content but using more visual elements than text to make it more engaging to read.
I’ll continue to pursue long-tail keywords, and voice search secondarily as I still see it working, and I’m still driving tons of traffic using this strategy.
That’s it, and I believe we’re in for a ride in 2024 with some exciting things in the search.
Right now, we’re seeing a lot of user-generated content in the SERPs; I think this will be fixed within a couple of months, and we’ll start to see a proper search engine algorithm that’ll show proper search rankings again.
I’m excited to continue building backlinks, changing my focus towards increasing engagement, and being more visual with my content.
AI will continue to affect the digital landscape and the SEO landscape, to be more precise.
But not all hope is out; continue to pursue the relevant keywords for your niche, write great content, supply it with video content, and build backlinks, and then I’m sure you’ll see some positive search rankings.