7 SEO Trends for 2017


SEO is constantly changing. Below, we’ve listed some of the biggest trends in SEO that we believe will have an impact on your website in the coming year.


1) Mobile Optimization

In many countries, including the US, mobile traffic is responsible for more than 50% of web searches. With everyone owning a smartphone, and the popularity of tablets like the iPad and the Microsoft surface, is this really a surprise?

No, it isn’t. But unfortunately, a lot of website owners neglect one of their largest traffic sources. It is no longer optional to have a mobile friendly website. It is now necessary to operate.

Mobile sites need to be streamlined in design. They need to be simple, with large text and large buttons to compensate for smaller screens. Links need to be far apart to prevent accidentally pressing on the wrong one. Also, flash should be avoided, as it can be buggy on mobile devices.

Luckily, it is easier than ever to make your website mobile responsive. The majority of WordPress themes nowadays are mobile responsive. Themes on sites like Squarespace and Wix are as well.

Use Google’s Mobile-Friendly Test to see how your site scores. If the score isn’t good, you may want to reconsider your theme/website design.

2) Site Speed

Having a slow website hurts your SEO rankings. But why is that? It’s very simple:

Having a slow website is not only annoying for users, it can be extremely frustrating. You want something, and you can’t get it. It is no different than food at a restaurant taking an eternity to reach you.

This is especially true for mobile. People are much less willing to wait on their mobile devices than on their desktops.

Check out your website’s speed ranking with Google’s Page Speed Insights.

If it isn’t quite up to snuff, there are a couple steps you can take:

  • Allow for browser caching
  • Reduce HTTP requests on the site
  • Use JPG images instead of PNG


3) Social

Social media has changed how we experience the internet. And it isn’t slowing down one bit. Your website should be on multiple social media websites.

We aren’t just talking Facebook and Twitter here; we’re talking:

  • Facebook
  • Twitter
  • Instagram
  • LinkedIn
  • Pinterest
  • Tumblr


Social media allows for you to engage with your readers and subscribers in new ways. It also allows you to drive traffic your website might not otherwise get.

Your website and all of your content must be shareable. That means that anyone who likes what you say should be able to share it with their peers. This can bring massive traffic to your website. This is also how you can go viral.

On top of all these benefits, social media also boosts your search engine rankings. When your social media is active, with users commenting and sharing, that is a strong signal to Google that your content is valuable. As a result, you can see a strong boost in rankings.

4) Video

Video marketing is a HUGE ranking factor. Not only is it a ranking factor, but it is a great way to drive traffic. Search engines consider video to be media rich content.

Users love videos. As a result, search engines love videos as well.

A well-produced YouTube video can drive massive traffic to your website. As a matter of fact, it is much easier to rank videos than it is to rank websites.

An embedded video on your web pages can also make your content stand out from your competition. Video marketing is also popular because it allows you to convey a large amount of information quickly, and in an easy to digest format.

If something on your site is going to go viral, the most likely candidate is a YouTube video.

Video marketing is especially important in e-commerce. Your customers want to see your product. What it looks like and how it performs. They want video reviews. No one likes to buy blind.

The best part about this is that video marketing can be extremely inexpensive. For live action, all you need is a camera. To make list videos or tutorials, all you need is PowerPoint and a screen caster.

Video marketing shows no sign of slowing down. Google may be the largest search engine, but do you know who is the second largest? That’s right, YouTube!

It would be a massive mistake to overlook this traffic and SEO goldmine.

5) Voice Search

Twenty years ago, it would be inconceivable that we could talk to our phones, and they would talk right back to us. Voice recognition technology was the stuff of Sci-fi movies.

But in 2016, this technology is a reality. On iPhones, we can talk to Siri. On Androids we can talk to Google Now. And on Windows Phones we can talk to Cortana.

Your content needs to be optimized to be found via voice search. But how do you go about doing that?

The answer is simple: long tail keywords.

When you use voice search, you are making long, detailed requests. Long tail keywords fulfill these requests. If you are ranking for long tail keywords, it is very likely you can be found via voice search.

6) Local SEO

Local SEO has come a long way. For a while, it was kind of an afterthought, but now it can have an extreme impact on your business.

If you own a brick and mortar business, you ABSOLUTELY need to be focusing on local SEO.

Even if you own an e-commerce business, you should still be focusing on Local SEO. For example, if you’re selling heavy winter jackets, you can focus on local SEO in the Northern US and Canada.

One of the best things you can do for local SEO is to have consistent information across multiple listings. The most important of all of these is Google My Business. However, other resources such as Yelp, Yahoo Local, and Trip Advisor are still very important.

7) Playing Clean

It is no mystery that Google, and other search engines, are getting smarter. Gone are the days when keyword stuffing could gain you high rankings. No longer can you hastily set up a private blog network and dominate the rankings.

Google updates have destroyed countless people’s businesses who were trying to cheat the system. Don’t get hit by one of these penalties, your website may never recover.

Google only cares about one thing, content. So create good content, and don’t break the rules.

Stay white hat, don’t go black hat.

Sure, results may come slower, but at least your site will still be there a year from now.

To learn the difference between white hat, and black hat SEO check out this article.


  1. Hey Jeff,

    SEO changes every now and then. It becomes important for bloggers and marketer to understand what drives the changes. Most of the factors that drive SEO in 2016 will still drive it in 2017.

    You have shared the most obvious trends. However, I have reservations on how Voice Search will really drive SEO in the coming years. Longtail keywords should work better in writing than in voice!

  2. Hey Jeff,

    This an interesting article. It is also one worth bookmarking because of the facts embedded in it. Every marketer that wants to step up with SEO in 2017 must be mindful of the facts and details shared here.

    The 7 SEO trends discussed here tell of things that drive search ranking. So, marketers must ensure practical implementation to improve search in the coming year!

  3. Hello Jeff,

    Search engine optimization or SEO is the blood of any online marketing business. It is important to keep it lively at all times.

    Following the best practices from the search engines like Google is fundamental for success.

    The good news remains that socials, speed, mobile, videos, etc have been mentioned at one time or the other by Google as ranking factors.

    Thus, giving full attention to the above trend in 2017 should help to improve SEO for the business!

  4. Hi Jeff,

    It is important for individuals and businesses to know and follow changing trends of activities online. SEO is one of those online actions that should never be ignored.

    SEO is not constant and its dynamism influences online success. Therefore, following the above trends is crucial, especially if the best practices are implemented at all times!

  5. Hi Jeff,

    That’s an extremely useful list of SEO trends for 2017!

    Some of them seem to be the continuous ones from 2016, such as site speed, local SEO, social media. At least, we paid a lot of attention to these trends in 2016 at our company.

    However, Voice Search is quite new to me, I’ve never worked with it before. Seems like it will be one of the new things for me in 2017! Time to learn more about it 🙂
    Krystsina recently posted…The Small Business Guide to Black Friday, Small Business Saturday & Cyber MondayMy Profile

    • Hi Krystsina,

      You are correct, there is certainly a lot of overlap with 2016 trends.

      I feel that these trends are just becoming more and more pronounced.

      On the voice search side, I myself am still amazed how much the subject has grown.

      For the longest time, it was something you only saw in Sci-Fi movies. Seeing middle schoolers use voice search is awe inspiring to me.

      Who knows where this trend will take us in the future.
      Jeff Miller recently posted…White Hat vs. Black Hat SEO – The Great DebateMy Profile

  6. There are lots of things that affect search ranking positively. If these are mastered then it becomes easier to succeed with search engine optimization.

    However, keeping it clean or playing by the rules is fundamental for success. If the rules are not followed when engaging socials, optimizing for mobile or improving site speed, it would be difficult for rank well.

    So, embracing ‘white hat SEO’ in 2017 is as much important as observing the first six SEO trends shared above!

  7. Hi Jeff,

    In 2017 there would be continuation of SEO trends like mobile, site speed and socials. In addition, Google is still going to Monitor how each of these trends is effectively practiced.

    Observing the best practice is key for establishing the trust and improving productivity.

    I guess since 2016 is winding down, its now time to follow up with the SEO that worked this year in 2017.

    A very good post if you ask me!

  8. Hi Jeff,

    I couldn’t agree with you more on these trends for SEO in 2017. The trends have worked well in the 2016 and they are sure going to define the direction of search engine in the nearest future.

    One trend that must never be ignored is playing it clean. Google loves those who abide by its rules. SEO trends begin with the rules set by Google and obeying them will bring the needed results.

    Thanks for sharing this post. It easily reminds us of the Needful when it comes to search engine optimization!

  9. Hi Jeff,

    SEO will continue to find relevance in the Internet marketing circle. It is to Internet marketing what fuel is to machines.

    Having said this, I’d like to commend you for including local SEO in this list. It is under-estimated yet produces great results. According to Kelsey Group 74% of Internet users perform local searches, and Search Engine Watch
    61% of local searches result in a purchase.

    Therefore, if you want to take your business to the next level, you must not exclude local SEO from your marketing strategies.

    Hafiz Akinde recently posted…The Top 7 Ways To Make Money BloggingMy Profile

  10. SEO tends for 2017 will not deviate from the obvious changes in mobile, socials, speed, local seo, video, and voice search, etc.

    However, it is one thing to know what affects search ranking, it is also important to know how to make it effectual.

    Therefore, playing it clean by observing white hat tactics all of the time would be very useful!

  11. Hi Jeff,

    Thank you for posting this article. It amazes me how important being optimized for mobile users is. Just a few years ago you wouldn’t have thought too much about that.

    I guess it is important to make sure if you are blogging to have a good mobile responsive theme.

    I think your point is true too that videos are more likely to go viral and that youtube is one of the top search engines now. I really need to create some videos.

    I also will have to make sure I get my social media profiles set up as you say they are important too.

    Thanks for sharing my friend.

    Take care,


  12. Hello Jeff,

    Thanks for sharing these SEO trends for 2017. Voice search seems like it’s going to be the wave of the future.

    Things like site speed, social media, and having proper SEO is always going to be critical to the growth of your website.

    I notice video is catching on as a way to grow your site even more, and keep your visitors engaged.