2018 is poised to be a big year for SEO, and many digital marketers are feverishly guessing which best practices will change, and which will stay. Before we launched headfirst into 2018, Google—the leading authority on organic search and overall SEO—confirmed that it had been tweaking its crawling and ranking algorithm to better reflect the observed changes in user-behavior, and would continue to do so into the new year. Although very few details have been officially confirmed, one thing is for certain—optimizing your on-site SEO should be a priority, and it has never been more important.

Thanks to an increase in the allowed page-description length, there has never been a better time to revisit those meta descriptions.

There are many marketers and site-owners who believe that SEO ascribes to the notion of “set it and forget it”, which couldn’t be further from the truth—not only are “the rules” of SEO constantly under Google’s scrutiny, but the behavior of users and how they search is exponentially evolving to keep up with the constant digital transformation that we see every day. One of the most viewed aspects of a page within a SERP is its description, which many tend to neglect after their site has gone live. Despite not being a weighted feature for ranking, your page description is of utmost importance to your user, and often dictates whether they click through to your page from the SERP, or move on to a different page with a better description.

Don’t worry—now you have even more of a reason to finally revisit those neglected meta-descriptions, since Google has decided to increase the character limit from 156 to 320. Meaning, you now have more room to write quality content about a page that will attract users to click through. Once again, your page description is not considered for ranking—so, you technically don’t need to be as keyword friendly. However, this is yet just another sign of Google’s increasing demand for quality content that is relevant to your audience.

Your site may have ranked well in 2017, but it might not be optimized for a mobile-first 2018.

We are already aware that Google is moving towards a mobile-first outlook in regard to organic search ranking, since users are browsing more on their cell-phones, tablets, and phablets than ever before.

So, what does this mean for your current site?

Well, let’s just say that you have a site which loads content quickly, and displays it beautifully, on desktop browsers, yet fails to do the same on cell-phone and tablet browsers. This would eventually cause Google to diminish your site’s quality score, since it perceives this as inattention to your growing mobile audience, which would therefore affect your visible authority to the worldwide web, and ultimately your ranking and traffic.

With 2018 already underway, ensuring that every page of your site, along with all content, is optimized for mobile displays should be a top priority.

Before any link-building, social media advertising, or guest blogging, make sure you site and content demonstrate authority.

The world of digital marketing is consistently growing each year, bringing new ideas, strategies, and theories on how to improve your ranking, and 2018 is shaping up to be no different. However, before moving forward with a guest blog, or putting your entire marketing budget towards a paid-search campaign, make sure that you have the quality content to back it all up. There is nothing worse for your user than clicking through a paid ad, only to land on a page with poorly displayed content and authority. Make 2018 the year to optimize your on-page SEO and avoid being just a minor part of your user’s search history!