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8 SEO Trends to Expect this 2016

Change is in for the long haul for Google. It consistently evolves from the 1998 plain page to the rise of useful SERP elements such as three-pack results, carousels, listings, and rich answers. Thus, making a quality algorithm for content. Mobilegeddon, or mobile-friendly search algorithm and localization remarkably interrupted the web activity this year.

After a year of changes in Google’s algorithm and search engine results page (SERP), another year poses unique challenges to the search industry experts.

Without further ado, here are our list on what’s on store for SEO this coming 2016.

1. The rise of visual content

Although text is the set “standard” of contents, expect more of various formats from JPEGs, GIFs to infographics and videos.

More so, along with the invention of 360-degree cameras are 360-degree videos, where viewers can watch all angles and corners of it by dragging to the chosen perspective. Videos could even overtake textual content especially in business-to-community industry and brands. To add, virtual reality devices could surge in the market next year. Thus, the demand for visual content sets the bar higher.

2. Traffic will drop

Google strives to make search even faster. It uses its elements to directly show the answers to users’ queries, and therefore, the tendency will be searchers will no longer click the websites because they’re already satisfied with what they see in Google’s search page.

3. Google’s Direct Answers

Instead of writing a blog creatively with full intro-body-conclusion format, pages can now directly answer the questions of users about their niche. Direct answer is another SERP that makes the queries be searched faster; that it looks like Google already provided the answer. The danger of direct answers, Google would give priority to this kind of searches to top domain sites like Wikipedia and other similar content providers. Think and write the FAQs of searchers about your niche.

4. Tight Competition for SERP Elements

Because of the possibility of getting low traffic and click through rates, websites will strive to fill Google’s SERP elements such as local 3-packs, carousels, knowledge graphs, and direct answers. As a result, websites that already established their top spot will be more advantageous, and it would be difficult for others to climb their ranks.

5. Creative keywords

With the innovation of the Hummingbird algorithm, which is designated to each word in every query, it makes sure that the full the context is taken into account, rather than the particular keyword. This algorithm is also responsible in knowledge graphs and direct answers. Therefore, SEO copywriters now have freedom to use synonymous words rather than staying inside the box using the targeted keyword or phrases.

6. Voice Search

The human-to-device communication continues to achieve sophistication. Thus, search also copes with the improvement. It gets more conversational, uses more words per query, and tends to use question phrases other than the plain keyword search, as per Extra Mile Communications.

7. Mobile Optimization

Mobile is now bigger than desktop. Although Mobilegeddon has started this year, more and more websites will make their pages mobile-ready and responsive this coming year.

8. Dark traffic

As an SEO, it is your task to get back links and report to the client where these links are coming. However, there is direct traffic, wherein sources are unknown—hence, it is labelled as “dark traffic”. Dark traffic, according to, is a “URL that cannot be tracked because it doesn’t pass along a referrer string. When this happens, Google Analytics doesn’t know what to do with the visit and dumps it into Direct Traffic.” Google is putting more effort in solving this puzzle, and we expect to see the light in dark traffic this coming year.


Google’s evolution includes elimination of useless, stability of effective, and addition of ideas. What do you expect in SEO this year? Whatever it may be, dozens of minor and major algorithm updates would add spice to the SEO’s work routine. More challenging 2016 and Happy Holidays!

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