Those in the Adido SEO team and anyone else well versed in search engine optimisation know that a key part of the job, is keeping up with any of the latest innovations and updates from Google. With this in mind, here are some of the latest updates from Google Search, and what sort of impact you can expect them to have on your SEO.
Something that had been previously announced at the 2018 Google I/O event last year was How-To markup. You can use HowTo structured data to explicitly tell Google that your content is a “how-to”; a result that guides users through a set of steps to successfully complete a task, and can feature video, images, and text.
On the 8th May, Google published how-to documentation for developers to use when adding markup to pages, and also how to add this to Google Assistant. The documentation includes information on the steps, tools, duration, and other properties you would include in your markup. You can find an example of the How-To results below:
Making your search results more prominent in Google Search may drive more clicks to your website. However, if the searcher can get the full answer directly in Google search or on Google Assistant, you may never see that user end up on your web site. We would recommend testing this markup on any relevant pages you have and see if it leads to more traffic and conversions for your business.
FAQ results markup
Something else that had been previously announced at the 2018 Google I/O event last year was FAQ Results markup. A Frequently Asked Question (FAQ) page, of course, contains a list of questions and answers pertaining to a particular topic.
Adding this structure data helps Google show questions and answers directly on Google Search and the Assistant. Properly marked up FAQ pages may be eligible to have a rich result on Search and Markup Action for the Google Assistant, which can help your site reach the right users. Here’s how FAQ results look in search:
Much like with the How-To Markup, FAQ Results markup could either drive more or less traffic to your site, and will need to be trialled before you start relying on it as part of your SEO strategy.
Google My Business
A final, recent development that may impact your SEO, comes from Google sending out surveys to some local businesses; to see if they would be willing to pay for some features that they are currently getting for free from the search engine company.
Google My Business is a free service from Google, that gives businesses the ability to update their information. In return, Google provides searchers with local search results that are accurate and relevant. But judging by this recent survey, Google may in fact decide to start charging a monthly fee for this service.
The survey specifically asked local businesses how much they would pay each month for services that are already included in Google My Business. According to this survey, Google could charge from $10 per month to over $70 per month to be listed in the Google local results.
This is obviously very noteworthy news; not only because a free service may now require additional funding in your SEO approach, but also in that it seems to be pointing towards a change in approach from Google; typically, they monetize for search ads, not simply being listed in the search results.
Time will tell what Google decides to do from this survey and what sort of impact these other updates could have, and it will be interesting to see what happens next in the world of SEO!