“This is seriously lit.” “You are looking on fleek.” “Lowkey living for the weekend RN.”
These are just some of the popular but admittedly incredibly confusing phrases that have slowly worked their way into modern day lexicon. With an average of 1,000 words being added to the Oxford Dictionary every year, the English language is constantly being molded and upgraded; changing with the times, to reflect the trends of the day. While this turns life into one long continuous English lesson, where we are taught new words and slang phrases every day, this also has a massive impact on internet searches and in turn those all important Google rankings.
To help you get to grips with the confusing riddle that is modern day internet searching, we’ve compiled a guide to help you navigate the public’s personal preferences and general internet behaviour to allow you to create content and engaging social pieces that will bring you to the top of Google and most importantly to the forefront of the public eye.
Look at the language used in Search Trends
When it comes to figuring out the current SEO standing, it’s important to first take a step back and look at the basics; working out exactly what people are searching for the most. Google released a report in 2016 of its most popular searches of the year, and while some of the results were predictable, there were more than a few surprises.
Euro 16, Pokemon Go, David Bowie, Donald Trump and Prince were the top 5 overall searches within the UK, while the ever popular ‘how to’ searches featured ‘how to play Pokemon Go’, ‘how to lose weight well’ and ‘how to stay young’. With the shock Brexit vote of 2016 making international headlines across the globe, it’s surprising to see that EU referendum searches missed out on hitting the top Google hot spots. Instead, people appeared to be more interested in sporting events, celebrities, gaming and lifestyle articles. This may in part be due to overall internet usership. In 2016 it was revealed that 99% of adults aged 16 to 34 were recent internet users, having used the internet at least once within the space of 3 months. In contrast to this only 41% of people over the age of 75 were counted as frequent internet users.
It’s the younger generation that is utilising the internet the most and as a result, it’s not surprising to see that it’s stereotypically ‘younger’ interests that are ranking highest. To keep your business on top of the search engine game, adapt and mold your content to fit in with the younger demographic; creating engaging and lifestyle friendly content that will see your site ranking in Google’s SERPs when it comes to those all important searches.
Keep both the language used and content current
Although it’s possible to see that in general, the public tends to lean towards lifestyle pieces throughout their internet searches, it can still be difficult to gauge exactly which specific subjects peak the public’s interests the most. The Internet’s trends rise and fall each day, making it at times an unpredictable mass of confusion that can be excessively difficult to manage and predict. However beneath the web of confusion is a patterned plan that can be traced and translated to provide us with insights into the public’s internet habits.
Perhaps what is most apparent is that the internet is seasonal, it peaks and troughs throughout the cold winter months and the hot summer weeks. While some trends are predictable, with all things Christmassy ranking in the countdown to December, and beaches, pools and all things bbq related hitting the top spot in those summer months. However, it’s not just the weather forecast that creates the internet’s seasonal searches. Ever changing and always moving, society thrives off crazes and fads, as our obsessions consume our every waking moment. Perhaps one of the most current examples of this is the ever popular television show Game of Thrones.
Sending the world into a frenzy, Game of Thrones has completely and utterly captivated the imaginations of the public as entire chat shows, magazines and even news segments have been dedicated to this fantastical televised show. In fact, Google itself released a ‘Game of Thrones’ graph for the ‘most searched Game of Thrones houses’ which it updates daily based on changing figures. This kind of global phenomenon has completely dominated the public eye, and as such it’s no surprise that other companies are taking advantage of this fad for their own agenda. From Business Insider to Vogue, to Carlsberg, to Spotify, countless businesses have created campaigns and content around Game of Thrones as a means by which to engage with the public. In order to stay on top of the search game, keep your social media and content up to date with the latest fads, adding some fun to your business while all the time ensuring your company is staying current within the SEO game (of thrones).
Utilise Voice Search and Slang It Up
Now you know what the public are searching for, the next step is working out exactly how they are searching for it. According to recent statistics, 41% of adults now use voice search at least once per day, and this is expected to increase by 2020 to 50%. But what exactly does this mean for SEO? Well, what it really means is that people are going to start searching for things in a less formal tone, and instead start using a more chatty search voice. The progression towards conversational styled searches can already be seen over the years as some of Google’s top 2011 searches came up as ‘how to make’, ‘what is love’ and ‘how to draw’, in comparison with some of 2016’s top searches which included ‘how to tie a Windsor knot’, ‘what is the single market’ and ‘how to make batter for fish’. Straight away it’s apparent that searches have become far more specific and chatty in tone over time, in comparison with the more stoic and simplistic searches of 2011. This means that your site’s targeted keywords and phrases will have to adapt to fit in with this more casual and colloquial way of searching, or risk being left behind.
When trying to influence your content and social to fit in with this more conversational way of searching, it all comes down once again, to utilising current trends, but this time in terms of vocabulary and terminology. Slang is a huge part of everyday culture and is slowly starting to work its way into those all important Google searches. A prime example of this is the increasingly popular term ‘muggy’. Popularised by ITV’s smash hit show Love Island, the term ‘muggy’ has since enjoyed a dramatic increase in internet searches (and became its own hashtag – #muggymike), as the new term has more than quadrupled it’s Google searches over the last few months, showing that not only has it worked its way into people’s vocabulary, but it’s also crept into people’s online search lexicon. In order to keep ahead of the game and stop yourself from looking ‘muggy’, keep your online voice up to date with some of the most popular terms and phrases.
Language, interests, and trends are constantly changing and evolving over time, and in order to keep your business up to date and current it’s important to adapt your content and public voice to engage and excite your audience. If you need any help or advice in keeping your company ahead of the Google search game, contact one of our team and we’ll be more than happy to help.