SEO Trends For 2022 That Will Make You The Search Engine Master

After finally managing to wash off the weird taste that 2021 left in our mouths during January, it's high time to take a look at what the year ahead has in store. 2022 promises to finally bring an end to the pandemic. 

The global economy is predicted to get back to its levels before the Covid era. Finally, we will be able to travel freely again. While we all strive to get back to what the world once was, when it comes to our social life, when we talk business, the world has become digital, and there is no turning back. 

Researchers claimed that Covid accelerated the world's digital transformation by seven years. While we do think their time would have been much better used in finding a cure for the disease, we are glad they wasted valuable resources to point out this otherwise pointless estimation. It truly fits our narrative perfectly. 


Yes, the world has become digital, and everyone who wants to sell anything - be it second-hand socks or highly specialized eye surgery, needs to be on the world wide web to find clients. 2022 will be the pinnacle of this transformation, and SEO will play a massive role in it. After all, around 70% of internet users go through search engines before ending up on a page.

With 3.5 billion searches every day, Google is an unavoidable factor in your digital marketing strategy. Before taking a look at our crystal ball and telling you who will win the Super Bowl this year and how SEO will transform in 2022, let's dive into the past and take a look at what happened during the past 12 months.

How Did Google Change Over The Last Year?

2021 was marked by about a gazillion and six Google changes. They happened so often that sometimes we wondered whether the search engine's programmers just wanted to start a wave of suicides amongst SEO specialists. 

January Google was flying under the radar, but some minor adjustments in their algorithm were made. February, the king of the search engines, kickstarted the massive changes by introducing the "passage indexing". This impacted around 7% of all queries. In mid-February, a fix removed the Featured Snippets, only for them to return a month later.

In April, Google reviewed their ranking system and gave an advantage to well-researched articles at the expense of spammy, short and otherwise pointless articles. 


At the start of June they began the first 2021 Core Update, and at the end of the month, they released two anti-spam updates. Obviously, Google was trying to keep the quota before the end of the second trimester, and on June 25th, they rolled out the Page Experience Update. This had a significant impact on many website rankings. 

July witnessed the second part of the Core update, as well as the critical link spam update, affecting backlinks value. 

August, you may have been on holiday, but Google began rewriting page titles in SERPs. However, after a huge uproar from SEOs and users alike, Google dialed back on this change in September.   

October was largely uneventful, except for some minor fixes. Come November, though, we witnessed another anti-spam update and the third part of the Core Update. 

December, just to cap the year, there was a product reviews update, rewarding high-quality product reviews. The search engine also redesigned Top Stories, splitting it into two columns for desktop.

As you can see, Google never sleeps, and unlike Santa, it brings good website gifts several times a year. 

SEO Review Of 2021

Last year it became evident that Google is doubling down on their AI initiative. In May, the search engine announced the arrival of MUM - a Multitask Unified Model. To put it into simple English, this is a program that will educate itself into understanding context better.

It's Google's way of telling us that they are doubling down on Natural language (NLP), name, entity and recognition (NER) and Natural language understanding (NLU). 

The second biggest change that happened last year was with the link building. It truly caught a lot of SEO off-guard and brought chaos to the search rankings. In 2021 Google finally decided to cut-off paid link-building and spam links and concentrate on quality links. 

Something we mentioned in our article dedicated to Link Building. With the several link updates that Google made over the past 12 months, finally, links will only exist to be useful and not as a tool for gaining rank positions. 


The third interesting, although at the moment not very time-worthy change in 2021, was the rise in Google's competitors. Still, Google remains a titan amongst people when it comes to the search engine market. Still, in 2021 its popularity dropped nearly 1%.

At the same time, Bing and Yahoo rose slightly, especially in the American market. Indeed that's not something that impressive, but it's an exciting trend that if it remains valid in 2022, Google's monopoly might be in danger, and finally, we will have to learn what bing's or yahoo's guidelines are.  

Until this happens, though, Google will still be the most important partner of your business. 

Google Will Be Even More Important In Your Life In 2022

This slight drop in popularity will bring constant headaches for SEO specialists since Google will continue with their regular updates in an attempt to stay one step in front of their competitors and to make sure they offer the best product to the user.

It's a lot like the tale of the hare and the tortoise, and even more so the Bugs Bunny rendition of the same story. Instead of going forward to the finish and being the awesome search engine that everyone knows, they will stop and try to make their race even easier.

Although this certainly won't lead to their demise (at least not in 2022), the chances are that Google will lose at least another 1% of their monopoly to Bing and Yahoo. Keeping in mind that we are talking about roughly 2.5 trillion searches annually, that's not a neglectable number.

Keeping up with Google's changes is hard, and to stay on track, you should regularly visit our blog to stay informed. You can even subscribe to our newsletter, and we will make sure to keep you up to date with all of Google's tantrums. 


The search engine's king will also try to push its platforms ahead in the search results. That's not a new concept of the tech giant, but rather a continuation of their politics for several years now. This means that Google Images, YouTube, and other Google assets will be prioritized over other content.

So if you have the resources and the time, maybe starting a YouTube channel is not such a bad idea. One thing's for sure, though. Google My Business is no longer optional. If you want to be someone on Google, GMB is a must-have. 

From an SEO point of view, this means branching out extensively—new channels of communication, new image and media strategies and new optimization. Yes, Google is determined to make our lives a living hell in the next few years. 

One thing that will almost certainly happen is the expansion of the SERP features. In the past few years, Google added things like "People ask also" and the 0th position, which were astonishingly well received. Google will try to make its search engine panel even more interactive and user-friendly, and it will undoubtedly use a lot more of its space to show information. 

These changes will affect everyone on the net, but probably none more so than E-commerce. However, in 2022 you will find a big friend in the face of the shopping graph.

The Shopping Graph Will Be Your Best E-commerce Friend

By the end of last year, over 2.1 billion people worldwide had bought goods or services online. That's roughly a quarter of the population of Earth. The numbers in 2022 will only rise, despite the promised end of the pandemic.

Naturally, Google is trying to create the best shopping experience for their users and, in 2022, will heavily invest in this endeavor. 

Over the past 12 months, Google implemented the Shopping Graph to make the buyer's experience as smooth as a 300-year-old whiskey before you receive the check of it.

The Shopping Graph is another one of Google's AI-enhanced models that allow brand owners to present their products freely to as many buyers as they wish. The latter, on the other hand, are free to browse and find the best product they need. 

With information like price, reviews, inventory data, website and videos, the AI understands the buyer's needs and shows them precisely what they are looking for.


In 2022 these functions will reach new heights as Google will widely implement Google Lens in their e-commerce venture. With Google Lens, one could just take a picture of something they like or directly scan it from Google Images, and they will be provided with listings of matched products that resemble and/or are related to the picture.

Keep in mind that this technology is just starting to get implemented, so don't be surprised if you get some weird random results. To be able to optimize your listings for this new reality, you'd need to create listings full of relevant keywords. As usual, you should know that placing something as a superfood while offering KFC knock-off brand chicken nuggets will lead to a penalty from Google.

Good keyword research can always help you find leads that are actually interested in your product. Although I can't imagine there will be a lot of them if you genuinely offer KFC knock-off brand chicken nuggets. 

Adding an image will bring your product a long way since Google Lens won't be able to identify it otherwise. To ensure you won't be missed when Google scrapes your info, add relevant keyword-rich alt tags to your photos. 

SEOs Won't Get Rid Of HTML (Yet)

As you already know, HTML optimization is one of the fundamentals of on-site SEO {add a link to the On-site SEO article}. Making it easier for Google's crawlers to read your site guarantees you a better place in their ranking. Although good HTML is not a reason enough to be placed at the top, the lack of optimization in the code is crucial when you strive to be Google's favorite. 

In 2022 Google most likely will take some steps in this direction, but it's highly unlikely there will be anything radical at this point. There are enough programs and highly sophisticated CMS that can make the HTML automatically. However, Google still needs it in order to operate as smoothly as it does. 


Unfortunately, the day when SEO specialists wouldn't have to know HTML is not yet in sight. Although the content management systems are advanced enough and website builders like Webflow manage to optimize the HTML automatically, a good SEO specialist still needs to know how to fine-tune the website. 

Long Articles, Mid-long Videos - The Perfect Match In 2022

Content has always been as crucial to SEO as laying on your keyboard while working is to your cat. However, not any type of content will satisfy the ever-growing demands of Google. During the last few years, Google took a bold step in promoting quality over quantity.

This means that the search engine king began ranking higher content that is not just interesting to the reader but provides value, points out facts, makes references to research or at least authoritative websites.

A few years back, to rank Google, you should have splogged at least three blog posts every week. In 2022, and the foreseeable future in general, the best-ranked articles will be at least 1500-2000 words in length. They will have a lot of information written in a more sophisticated language. Moreover, if you manage to make them entertaining, their value even rises.


Videos, on the other hand, will be mid-long, and once again, they will have to meet some quality standards. Google harshly punishes fake news and will probably tighten the grip even further in 2022. The perfect video should answer a long-tail keyword-based question, (include it in the first 5-10 seconds of the video), contain references and facts regarding the topic. It should be between 8-15 minutes in length.

Longer videos, at around 20-30 minutes, are also welcomed if they don't deteriorate in quality. Remember that people have many things, but time isn't one of them. So if you have a lot to say, it's best to split the video into 2-3 parts. This way, it can even save you some topic research time. 

Google Discovery Is On The Rise

Despite being a massive success in 2021, Google Discovery still isn't among the primary targets of Digital Marketing strategies for some obscure reason. In 2022 this Google feature will gain even more popularity, and it's better to hop on the wagon as soon as you can. 


Google Discovery is a relatively new feature of the search engine giant that helps users find relevant content based on their interests. Let's ignore the creepy stocking of cookies and other sweets used by perverts to lure their prey, and just concentrate on the outcome - a perfectly personalized content just for you. 

There is only one way to get noticed in Discovery, and that's high-quality visuals. You should also consider narrowing down your specific audience. The more detailed your segment is, the better the chance of finding your content.  

AI! AI Everywhere

While we are inevitably going towards Skynet, Hall9000 or any other doomsday scenario involving self-aware computers, we might as well reap the benefits before the missiles start falling. AI has been huge in the past two years, and it will only continue to grow. Naturally, AI will mingle with SEO, as you might have read above. 


That's why SEO is changing so rapidly. As AIs like MUM expand their knowledge and learn your customer's behavior, they will change their algorithm and always show what they think is most relevant. Unfortunately, we are way too far from AI reaching its peak. 

Let's Sum It All Up

2021 was a great year for SEO in general, except for the 147835629843738749 Google updates. Otherwise, Google finally managed to take the upper hand against link spammers and expanded the importance of NLP, NLU and NER. Furthermore, although minimal, we saw some bumps in Bing and Yahoo's numbers that might be just a fluke or a premonition. Whichever, it's still in the way too distant future to care. 

2022 will be even more challenging but at the same time promising for SEO experts. On the one hand, Google has grand plans in expanding its SERP features, and, as it seems, it will continue updating approximately every 23 and a half seconds. It will promote its own platforms, so better start thinking of a channel if you are not on YouTube yet.

Google Lens and Discovery will have a massive impact on e-commerce, as well as the Shopping Graph.

When push comes to shove, there will be a lot of changes, and it will be a turbulent year in Google's SERP. 


Thankfully, you can always count on us. Locus Digital is always ready to swoop in and optimize your SEO, so you will get on top in the Google rankings no matter the number of updates Google makes.

Knowing all changes and what makes Google happy is our full-time job, and as one of the best Dallas based SEO agencies, we are always one step ahead, ready to decipher Google's wishes and help you jump over your competitors. All you need to do is click on the button below to schedule your FREE consultation.

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