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Celebrate the New Year with a New SEO Strategy for 2022

Over the past year, Google has pushed out an astounding number of updates. From the Link Spam Update to the Page Experience Update, Google’s on a mission […]

By Manick Bhan on Dec 28, 2021 - 9 minute read

An seo strategy for 2022 in text with firework in the BG

Over the past year, Google has pushed out an astounding number of updates. From the Link Spam Update to the Page Experience Update, Google’s on a mission to weed out black hat SEO tactics and improve the SERPs by emphasizing quality content, optimal page speeds, and mobile SEO. What does this mean in terms of your SEO strategy in 2022? Stick to best practices and ensure your SEO foundation remains strong.

If you’re planning to prioritize increasing your site’s search visibility, we’ve put together a plan that will get you through 2022 and have your site sailing through the SERPs for time to come:

Infographic showing a new year a new SEO strategy

2022: Quarter 1

Begin the year with a focus on gaining a clear understanding of where your metrics are at now and where you want to go.

1. Know Your Numbers & Set Goals

A coffee cup with Set goals, not limits image with a pen and napkin

When it comes to planning out your SEO strategy for the year, spending time with your metrics is vital. What metrics should you be mindful of going into 2022? 

A great place to start studying your SEO metrics is with your

  • Overall organic traffic: the number of people that land on your website via a search engine
  • Organic click-through-rate (CTR): the number of times searchers click on links to your page in the SERPs divided by your impressions.
  • Keyword rankings: Where your pages appear in the SERPs for keywords you rank for 

Once you feel comfortable with where these numbers are, you will want to examine your domain rating (DR) and page speed analytics.

What SEO Goals Should You Set for 2022?

Not all websites have the same SEO needs. We recommend you aim for a robust and well-rounded balance between all pillars of good SEO for the best results. 

However, if you’re looking for specific numbers to achieve in 2022, consider:

  • Increasing your organic traffic by a set percentage: examine last year’s MoM growth and increase the percentage by 5%-10% MoM this year.
  • Setting a goal for your Total Keywords or Keyword Positions.
  • Increasing your DR and earning high marks in PageSpeed Insights. This is always a great way to boost your rankings, too.

2. Keep Your Competitors’ Metrics in Mind

gif of Venus Williams hitting a tennis ball

Ultimately, you want to have a higher DR than your competitors. But knowing where to aim is part of the battle. Use the Bulk DA Checker to compare your domain authority or DR to your competitors’. 

While you’re looking into your competitors’ sites, take note of what keywords they rank for and if they have any keyword gaps.

3. Create a SERP-Winning Blog Content Calendar

Google continues to strive to uphold its core values in order to provide the best results for its users. In regards to your content, this means providing thorough, long-form blogs that demonstrate quality information and increase your site’s topical breadth and relevance.

To establish your content calendar for 2022:

  1. Set up pillar topics that relate to your site. Screenshot of keyword research tool with k9 training as the search term
  2. Then use the Keyword Researcher to find long-tail keywords that you can potentially rank for. Keep in mind that quality matters when deciding how many blogs to produce each month. Don’t bite off more than you handle.Screenshot of Music City K9 Training in SEO Content Asst Tool
  3. Use the SEO Content Assistant tool to ensure you maximize your blog’s ranking potential with the right keywords, length, and other quality indicators.

4. Audit Your Site Speed

As we saw in 2021, Google will continue to reward sites with fast loading times, stable pages, and responsive design. We anticipate these signals will continue to play a major role in how Google ranks its results. However, it’s important to keep in mind that these also benefit your users, reduce your bounce rate, and can increase your conversion rates.

Screenshot of PageSpeed Insights report on linkgraph

So, perform a site speed audit and use that information to make a plan to tackle any issues that arise. First, identify your slowest pages. Then focus your efforts on optimizing images and elements above the fold. Finally, work your way through any other content shift issues and loading delays.

2022: Quarter 2

Build on your SEO fundamentals and diversify your approach as the year progresses.

5. Stay Active on Social Media

Voice Search continues to trend upward. What does that have to do with your social media profiles? While Google has never formally released how heavily social media weighs into their PageRank (if at all), Bing factors social signals into their rankings. And the majority of voice searches are performed on Alexa smart speakers… And Alexa uses Bing’s search results. This means that optimizing slightly more for Bing can give your site a bump in traffic.

6. Update or Create a Google Business Profile

Screenshot of an example business listing

Mobile searches continue to outnumber desktop searches, averaging 60% of all searches throughout 2021. And when it comes to finding local businesses, mobile search far surpasses desktop.

If you haven’t created your Google Business Profile, now is the time. Without a business profile, you’re missing out on local search traffic and the opportunity for better reputation management.

For those that already have a Google Business Profile, check your photos, reviews, and questions. Take the time to answer questions potential customers may ask, reply to positive and negative reviews, and update photos of your business.

7. Spring Clean Your Links

Broken internal and external links can disrupt a Google crawl resulting in a negative effect on your SEO.

Screenshot of Site Health from Page Audit in GSC Inisghts

Perform a Site Audit using the Page Explorer tool. 

  1. Using the Inaccessible and Orphaned report to identify broken links and pages that are not loading. 
  2. Fix the pages with the highest Search Impressions and Organic Traffic first. 
  3. Replace or redirect internal links and replace outbound links with relevant newer links.

8. Increase Backlink Outreach

Backlinks have a direct effect on your site’s domain rating. Poor quality inbound links can have a negative impact on your DR while high-quality links can strengthen your DR. Gaining backlinks can be a time-consuming process, but it pays off.

Begin a link outreach program or use a service to streamline the link building process, targeting websites with high DR scores. Offering quality guest posts can increase the quality of your backlink profile.

2022: Quarter 3

Rocky gif

Don’t lose your momentum and keep your eye on the prize of increasing organic traffic.

9. Revise Tired Content

Screenshot of Top Page tool

Once your content strategy is running smoothly, you can begin to update your existing content. This signals to Google that your content is still relevant and gives you the opportunity to add depth to your blogs. Use the Top Pages tool in GSC Insights to identify pages that aren’t reaching their SEO Potential.

As you update blogs and landing pages, remember to update meta tags, especially for pages with high impressions and low CTRs.

Adding rich media is another great way to liven up your pages. And don’t forget to make your pages accessible.

10. Check Your SEO Progress

Throughout your SEO journey, it’s important to reflect on what’s working and where you should pivot. The SearchAtlas’s GSC Insights tool makes it easy to compare the most telling metrics like Keyword Rankings. Use these analytics to begin forming an ongoing plan for 2023.

Don’t forget to celebrate your successes.

11. Respond to Google Algorithm Updates

There is no doubt that Google will release several updates in 2022. By focusing on best practices, you’re in a great place to respond to any new updates Google rolls out. However, you will want to tailor your approach to the specifics of the changes. 

If you’re a SearchAtlas user, you will stay in the know throughout the year with our “What’s New in Search” emails. Additionally, our suite of SEO software reflects the latest changes to Google’s PageRank.

2022: Quarter 4

Finish off the year strong. Cut ties from toxic backlinks and prune any pages that don’t reflect the strength of your new content.

12. Remove Toxic Backlinks

Toxic Backlinks tool sreenshot

Toxic backlinks can wreak havoc on how Google views your site. Eliminating low-quality backlinks is like cutting an anchor when your pages are sinking the SERPs. Gather your backlink information with the Backlink Analyzer. Then, submit disavow files using Google’s disavow tool.

13. Prune Under-Performing Pages

Worst Performing Pages tool screenshot

In the spirit of preparing for the new year, prune your pages that don’t perform to your standards or pages that present keyword cannibalization issues. The SearchAtlas Page Pruning tool allows you to easily identify low-performing pages that can bog down the quality of your content and overall site.

14. Set SEO Goals for 2023

gif of guy throwing glitter

As 2022 comes to an end, begin projecting new goals into the upcoming year. Stay current with changes to algorithms and audit how your target audience’s search and what your site’s strengths are.

And enter the new year with confidence by building on your successes in 2022.

Innovative SEO Software, Unbeatable SEO Experts

Planning for record-beating organic traffic in 2022? With SearchAtlas and the LinkGraph team, you can ring in the new year with SEO insight that will make this year the best yet when it comes to your site’s performance. Contact us today to learn more about our SEO services or SEO software.

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