Discover With Semalt 3 The Most Important Action Points For SEO Success In 2021

Welcome to this Blog where we are doing our best to give you the best tips to be first in the search engine rankings. Today, we want to give you a piece of very vital information that concerns the crucial points about SEO in 2021. As we all know, SEO is evolving at a rapid pace. So only those who are true SEO gladiators can stick their heads out in this fight. So, to become that real SEO gladiator, you need to be aware of the latest news related to the development of the SEO world. For that, don't worry! Just subscribe to our blog. In this SEO blog post, we will keep you updated on the latest SEO developments that can contribute to your SEO success in 2021. We give you 3 important action points for more SEO success in 2021.

Here are the 3 key action points for successful SEO in 2021 that we will discuss in detail:
  • Web Essentials
  • Google is fully committed to artificial intelligence
  • From keywords to topics.
So let's start with the first point!

1. Core Web Vitals 

Holy moly, Core Web Vitals… As if the SEO world doesn't have enough crazy terms. What does this mean again?

Simply put, it comes down to this.

Google will roll out the Page Experience update in May 2021. With this update, Google will reward websites that give users an optimal 'page experience' even more.

A good 'page experience' means a web page that is as user-friendly as possible.

Google already uses some web vitals to assess the page experience of a web page:
  • Mobile-friendliness
  • Safe Browsing
  • HTTPs
  • No annoying interstitials (full-screen popups on mobile)
From May 2021, 3 core web vitals will be added:
  • LCP - Largest content painting
  • FID - First Entry Delay
  • CLS - Cumulative Layout Change
LCP - The loading speed of the largest content element on the web page. For example, the largest content element may be the text on the web page. Once loaded, the user can start reading while other elements are loading, such as images and videos. A good LCP is a maximum of 2.5 seconds.

FID - this measures how quickly your web page responds to a user's actions. For example, if a visitor clicks on a link, how long does it take for the website to respond. A good FID is under 100 ms. 

CLS - this measures the visual stability of a web page by looking at how often users experience layout shifts. A layout shift occurs when elements jump on the web page because other elements are loaded later. For example, you read a piece of text on the web page and suddenly that text jumps down a bit because another advertisement or video is being loaded. Google uses a score for this, and a CLS score of less than 0.1 is good.

Core Web Vitals will influence rankings from May 2021. It probably won't have a huge impact. You can still rank just fine if you have a moderate/poor score on the core Web Vitals.

But it is important to make sure you score as well as possible. This means a better user experience and bonus points for Google.

Core Web Vitals Action Points 

Checking your score for web essentials and improve it if necessary? You can do it in Google Search Console.

But to get a broader view of the essential elements that could be at the root of your site's loading speed, you can use a tool called the SEO Dedicated Dashboard. Indeed, the SEO Dedicated Dashboard is a last generation SEO tool designed to meet the expectations of SEO in this 21st century. This tool has several powerful features and one of these features is dedicated to checking the performance of your site. 

In this tool, simply go to "Site Speed" and paste the link to your site. Then check the reports for mobile and desktop. 
  • Check your scores. Are there any URLs with "bad" or "need improvement" notice?
  • Check the URLs you want to improve with the Dedicated SEO Dashboard tool. Here, you'll see a URL's scores on Core Web Vitals with tips on how to improve the score.
  • This is often a rather technical story > ask your website builder/web host for help if you didn't have the skills to do this.

2. More Artificial Intelligence

During the "Google Search On" event in October 2020, Google gave an insight into the latest search engine developments, especially in the field of AI.

These are the main developments:
  • The search engine understands better and better what you are looking for > BERT is now used for almost every search query in English. This gives better search results to the user.
  • Spelling > in October 2020, Google rolled out a new spelling algorithm. They can now decipher misspelled words even better.
  • Passage Ranking > This is an important update: Google can now even better show passages of a webpage independently in the search results. Passage Ranking will improve 7% of searches worldwide, according to Google.
Passage ranking is very similar to featured snippets: you see passages from a web page directly in the search results. The difference is that with this new update, Google can assess individual passages even better for relevance to a search query.

Action points AI

Are you still consciously using misspelled keywords in your content to rank better in Google?  It wasn't really necessary then, but now it's really necessary.
  • A page can rank for more and more keywords/topics through 'Passage Ranking'. Make sure that your article is optimized for the right keywords and above all that it is well structured. Divide your article into separate sections that deal with specific subtopics.
  • Use headings and subheadings. Each subtopic under a heading becomes a "mini web page" by Passage Ranking. And with that, you can rank nicely in Google!
  • Long content becomes even more important. You can now rank even better on all subtopics in a long article. Do you have multiple pages on topics that are very closely related? Then consider putting them into 1 article.
For example, you have a short article on your site about how to write a good conclusion. In addition, you have a long article that describes in its entirety how to write good blog articles. There is considerable overlap between these 2 articles > delete the short article about writing a good conclusion and put that in your long article.

Speaking of keywords, to make sure you are using the right keywords, I suggest you do keyword research using the SEO Dashboard. 

Many other tools can generate keywords for you. But the fundamental reason I recommend the Dedicated SEO Dashboard is its ability to give you all the information you need about each keyword. Its unique feature in this area is that it can also show you the keywords that your competitors are using to rank better. This will make it easier for you to make decisions and greatly increase your organic reach.

3. From keywords to topics

It used to be simple. 1 keyword per page and you were good. But this approach has long since ceased to work.

Web pages nowadays often rank for multiple keywords. Longer content ranks well in Google and 1 page can rank for tens, hundreds, or even thousands of keywords.
  • Keyword mapping is more important than ever. This means grouping keywords together for 1 page.
  • Group keywords that are very similar: Synonyms, related keywords, singular/plural, etc. Keywords related to your main topic + that have the same search intent.
  • Which keywords should you put on a separate page? When is it a separate subtopic?
This can be difficult to determine.

A handy trick is to check the top 10 search results in Google for both keywords. Do you see the same search results in the top 10? That means these web pages rank for both keywords.

If there is a lot of overlap between the top 10 for both keywords, it is best to combine them on one page.


Earning money on the internet and making money online are synonyms. They mean the same. Do you have to put them on one page?

Go to Google and search for both keywords separately. Compare the top 10 with each other. I see some overlap myself: 4 search results in the top 10 rank for both keywords.

So you could definitely combine them. But splitting is also a good option. 6 search results are different and so you might be able to score better with 2 separate pages.

Do you have a website with a high domain authority? Then combining is the best option here. If you have less authority, you probably have a better chance of good rankings with 2 separate pages.

Action points keywords to topics

  • Don't split keywords too much and combine them where possible. Group keywords that belong together on one page.
  • How do you do that? Look at the top 10 Google search results (use an incognito window to see the not personalized search results!). Do they overlap for 5 or more? Then it is probably best to combine them on one page.
  • Use tools, such as the Dedicated SEO Dashboard, to check this faster.
  • Start from the user/search intent: what does a user want to see when he/she searches for a specific search term?
  • Long content does well, but keep it uncluttered. If a subtopic is so extensive that you have a lot to write about it, a separate page may make more sense.
  • You can make text expandable with an accordion/toggle. Would you keep a long article organized?
  • Make use of a table of contents: then a user can immediately click through to a subtopic in a long article.
  • Google also helps users with this in the search results with featured snippets. You click directly from Google to the relevant passage in the article. And the passage is marked in yellow: super handy! With "Passage Ranking" this will become even more extensive. This way you can quickly find what you are looking for in a long article.
Interested in SEO? Check out our other articles on the Semalt blog.

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