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Mobile SEO Predictions To Look Out For in 2018

The new year is both an end to some of last year’s trends, and the birth of some new ones. The past year has brought a lot of changes in the mobile ecosystem. Here is a rundown of some predictions towards mobile SEO for 2018 that should help us prioritize and plan our SEO efforts for more successful campaigns this year.

Blurring of the app/web lines

A big trend in 2017 that is predicted to continue in 2018 is a movement towards Progressive Web Apps or PWA’s, websites that enable an app shell and configuration file to be downloaded to a phone, which allows it to take on all the best characteristics of a native app while living on the web. They can be used directly on the web or installed like a native app on devices.

The app development trends will start to shift away from native apps and towards PWAs more. The Android OS now treats PWAs almost exactly like native apps. PWAs are self-contained apps that are already indexed on the web, eliminating all the complexity of linking back to your website.Users may not be able to tell the difference between a native app and PWAs. Apple was resistant to allowing their Safari browser to support PWAs, but recent announcements make it seem as though the company’s perspective has flipped. This is a strong indication that PWAs will be supported.

Cross-device convergence

As the number and purpose of connected devices continues to expand, mindsets will also need to expand to take on a wider view of what it means to be “cross-device.” Historically, cross-device might have meant having apps and a website, or having a responsive design website that worked on all devices. But in 2018, the line between app and web merges on mobile, and also on desktop and the Internet of Things.

More information is moving to the cloud, and it will be easier to seamlessly move from one device to another, maintaining the state, history, and status of interaction simultaneously. The convergence between mobile and desktop is most obvious when you look at the changes that happened in Windows 10. Google and Microsoft have always been more willing to coexist without walls while Apple has always leaned towards proprietary products and access.However, Apple may decide into merging its own iOS App Store with the desktop version of the store. That’s something to look forward to when it comes to SEO.

Increased reliance on structured data markup in more places

Structured data will be a big deal because it helps Google figure out what is going on without having to crawl the web. Content that is well marked up with structured data can be easily presented on traditional devices through voice search or interaction, and can give you a boost in SEO.

Databases don’t necessarily have URLs or need websites, and this is the core to the theory that the mobile-first index will not require URLs and will only rely on schemas and entity understanding.

A new way to think of mobile-first indexing

Knowing these trends should help you understand how mobile-first indexing fits into the larger SEO picture. Since native apps and progressive web apps don’t require different URLs to show different content, the method of indexing and organizing content needs to change. The use of the phrase “mobile-first” is also interesting. It appears as though Google co-opted the term mobile-first to something slightly different. Google will put focus on content accessibility and the cloud and focus much less than presentation on mobile devices.


From a search prospective, data that lives in one state, regardless of the device, is great — but assimilating all the different types of potential search results into an index is hard. The new mobile-first index will mix together websites with apps, PWAs and other data sets that don’t all have URLs, so this is where structured data markup will come in. In general, we can’t wait to get our hands dirty in learning new techniques into optimizing SEO more further but still being adaptive to the current trends.

Source: Search Engine Land


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