21 B2B SEO Trends and What They Mean for Business in 2023

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21 B2B SEO Trends and What They Mean for Business in 2023

Considering Google Ads’ average cost per lead has increased for 91% of industries year after year, it is crucial to have a solid SEO strategy in place to attract valuable, high-converting organic traffic. 

This blog to educate B2B business on the SEO trends that can help them plan and implement SEO strategies with AI on the rise and conversational search queries have taken over. 

By neglecting SEO, you’re missing out on valuable, profit-generating traffic. Now is the time to invest in your SEO strategy if you have not already done so.

Major Content and SEO Differences for B2B Companies

2023 has brought about a major shift in B2B companies content and SEO, with an increased focus on personalization, video content, AI, and voice search optimization.

  • Personalized content which is tailored to the needs, problems, and interests of the target audience is becoming more important in B2B marketing. Generic content no longer works.
  • Like ChatGPT, several generative AI and AI content apps are available on the market. These apps have completely transformed the industry and content creation.
  • More video content is being created than ever before. Video consumption is becoming increasingly popular, and this trend will only continue.
  • In B2B SEO, voice search optimization will play a big role. Companies must adapt their content for voice search, as more people use voice assistants like Alexa and Google Home to conduct informational searches.

Top Trends Affecting B2B SEO

Every year brings new challenges, trends, and opportunities for businesses to stay ahead of the competition in SEO. That means it’s time to gear up for the latest trends and what they mean for businesses. 

1. Google E-E-A-T (Experience, Expertise, Authority, Trustworthiness)

E-E-A-T is a way to differentiate value-packed content from spam, opinion-based, and clickbait content. A survey from Clutch shows that 75% of B2B buyers conduct research before purchasing. 62% of them consider online content while making their decision which is directly affected by E-E-A-T.

In E-E-A-T, experience refers to the level of experience that a website or author has in their field. Expertise recognizes the person’s level of knowledge and skill. Authority is determined by backlinks, engagement, and recognition, and trustworthiness is determined by accuracy and transparency.

It is a continuous refinement process and involves very little to no technical work. Google uses several signals as proxies to determine whether the information is E-E-A-T, as decided by a human. Human quality raters suggest algorithm modifications and apply them as per Google quality rater guidelines.

B2B companies should:

  • Hire subject matter experts.
  • Build authoritative backlinks from credible and relevant sources.
  • Encourage satisfied customers to leave positive reviews on Google Business Profile, Yelp, and other relevant review sites.

Don’t just talk the talk, walk the walk and show Google that you’re the real deal.

2. No More Third-Party Cookies!

Goodbye, third-party cookies! This means that B2B companies will need new ways to track user behavior and personalize content. But hey, change is positive, right?

It’s time to get creative and come up with fresh approaches that will engage your audience more thoroughly. Perhaps it’s time to launch a loyalty program or provide your most devoted users with exclusive content. Whatever it is, embrace the change and find new ways to make your customers feel special.

Some alternatives to third-party cookies are:

  • Identity solutions.
  • Google’s Privacy Sandbox.
  • First-party data.
  • Google’s Publisher Provided Identifiers (PPIDs).
  • Contextual advertising.
  • User identity graphs.

3. Mobile Optimization

The number of mobile users increases each year. The percentages of tablet, desktop, and mobile users globally are 2.03%, 40.73%, and 57.24%, respectively. From a U.S.-only perspective, the figures are slightly different, with a breakdown of 43.14% mobile, 54.26% desktop, and 2.6% tablet users.

Dekstop, mobile and tablet consumption trends

While the B2B industry generally has a bigger audience from desktop users, a turnover in numbers for the B2B fintech industry, which was 59% organic audience from mobile and 41% organic audience from desktop, led marketers to focus more on mobile optimization. 

If you’re a B2B company that wants to stay ahead of the competition:

  • Design a responsive website.
  • Optimize website speed by compressing images, minifying code, and reducing server response time.
  • Use short, descriptive, and keyword-rich titles and meta descriptions.
  • Keep up with SEO trends.

4. Author and Structured Data

To understand the content of the website and to learn more about the web and the wider world, Google employs structured data that it finds online, such as information about people, books, or businesses that are marked up. On-page markup codes structure data on the page it pertains to. The page’s structured data describes its content.

Example of structured data

A study by Google found that websites using structured data have an average of 30% higher click-through rates (CTR) than those without it. By incorporating structured data into their website, B2B companies can improve their online visibility, attract more qualified leads, and ultimately drive more sales.

5. Topical Authority

The topical authority approach is a content clustering strategy that helps B2B companies establish expertise and credibility in their industry. By identifying content gaps and opportunities and creating focused, well-connected content, companies can increase their topical authority, attract more qualified leads, and ultimately drive more sales.

The Demand Gen Report survey indicates that 96% of B2B buyers value content from industry thought leaders. It’s imperative to note, however, that gaining topical authority is not just about creating thought leadership content; it’s also about earning backlinks from other authoritative websites in your industry. The same report states that websites with authoritative backlinks are more likely to experience positive ROI from SEO efforts. This highlights the importance of topical authority.

6. Unique Value and Helpful Content Updates

Unique value means offering something that no one else offers, updating it regularly, and following the Search Quality Rater Guidelines. The content written to please the SEO algorithm often lacks human emotion and seems robotic, thereby leaving no impression on the reader. Such content uses specific keywords a specific number of times. That approach no longer works. Creating high-quality and informative content written by humans to provide value is what the algorithm likes now. As Google prioritizes unique and helpful content, competition is increasing and content quality standards are higher.

Helpful and insightful content seeks to answer the following questions:

  1. Who is your audience?
  2. What are their needs and wants?
  3. What are their problems?
  4. How can you solve them?

It’s more about helping the audience rather than targeting the audience.

7. On-Page Optimization and Comprehensive Content Coverage

On-page optimization refers to the process of optimizing individual web pages to make them more search engine and user-friendly. This involves several elements such as content, headings, subheadings, internal linking, and meta descriptions. Backlinko analyzed 11.8 million Google searches and concluded that top rankings are always based on comprehensive content coverage with the correct use of tags and descriptions.

Keyword research, measuring content health, and on-page optimization can be a challenge but tools like Outranking.io help businesses identify areas for improvement and optimize their content to rank higher on search engine results pages.

8. YMYL Sites and Misinformation in SEO

An opinion or news-based website called Your Money Your Life (YMYL) may positively affect users health, wealth, or happiness. An illustration of a YMYL page details how to invest for a 100% return. They give the reader facts, opinions, and a thought pattern.

This approach can impact a B2B company whereby it genuinely assists customers in investing their savings. Individuals visit them with the belief that they are experts and they have big dreams, but they ultimately end up causing damage to themselves.

Both real and false data and figures impact the algorithm and can harm a regular user. It is crucial to ensure that the information on these websites is supported by reliable sources and subject-matter experts. B2B companies can tackle this problem by creating awareness content to educate people with real facts and case studies.

9. AI-Generated Content

AI content creation speeds up the process of creating content, thus increasing efficiency and productivity. The cost of reviewing AI-generated content to ensure accuracy, quantity, and quality, however, can be time-consuming and resource-intensive.

With the proliferation of AI-generated content, keeping up with advancements in AI technology has become a necessity to stay competitive in the content creation landscape. 

Overall, striking a balance between AI benefits and challenges in content creation is crucial for evolving content creation. B2B companies can benefit from AI content creation advancements by leveraging AI-powered tools to streamline content production processes, increase output, and enhance overall content quality. This will enable them to stay competitive in the fast-paced digital landscape.

10. AI Content Tools and Apps

The incredible power of AI in SEO and content is changing trends in 2023. With cutting-edge technology and evolutionary products from OpenAI, companies can now take programming, writing, and designing to the next level.

SEO tools save businesses time and improve accuracy with their algorithms and speed. Outranking.io has already helped numerous businesses achieve top rankings, thanks to its remarkable AI.

But wait, there’s more! While these AI tools are useful and efficient, they cannot replace the artistry and creativity of writing by hand. Human writers bring fresh perspectives and visions to the table that cannot be replicated by AI content tools and apps. It’s essential to remember that these tools are only as good as the data they are fed with. SEO professionals must ensure accurate and relevant data to achieve the finest results.

11. SERP Marketing

SERPs are the most significant pages on the web that appear as a result of any query, either via paid ads or organically. With ever-changing trends, search engines are now displaying more images and media on SERPs, thus opening new opportunities for businesses. Personalization with specifically crafted content, AI and ML, voice searches, and videos are now equally important for a website’s SEO strategy. Businesses compete with all of these types of content to rank on SERPs. Monopolizing SERP is the most effective way of lead generation and businesses need qualified leads.

12. Passage Ranking

Google uses intricate and dynamic algorithms to deliver highly relevant results. It can distinguish between various passages on the same page and rank them individually thanks to passage ranking. Sites that use lengthy, unstructured content will be most impacted by passage ranking, which will boost them in SERPs.

Exmaple of passage ranking

13. Updating Google Analytics Skills For GA4

You wouldn’t show up to a party in bell bottoms and a polyester shirt, so don’t embarrass yourself by using outdated Google Analytics skills in the GA4 era. It enables businesses to measure traffic, engagement, and user activity with the Event+ Parameter measuring model. GA4 offers updated features such as machine learning and cross-device tracking, which can help B2B companies improve data accuracy and relevance.

Most marketers commented that GA4 was a mess, unusable, or difficult to use. Some said that it was not error-free and causes PTSD, but the most negative feedback about GA4 was that it was rushed out and not ready to be used yet.

Aligning strategies with GA4, however, is the only viable solution at the moment.

14. Backlinks

With just a few clicks, AI has made it feasible to generate thousands of words. Every day, a huge amount of low-quality, spammy content is being published on search engines. Generally, no one refers to such content, reads it, or acknowledges it. This acknowledgment in the form of backlinks has become a way to distinguish between both types of content for the algorithm.

Ultimately, backlinks now hold more weight, and B2B companies can use them to:

  • Bring in referral traffic.
  • Improve visibility.
  • Boost domain authority.

With the rise of AI and machine learning, it is becoming increasingly critical for B2B companies to focus on earning backlinks rather than collecting backlinks. It may seem spammy and damage your entire SEO strategy.

15. Video Content

A video makes maximum use of users’ ever-shortening attention spans. The success and popularity of video content has made it an essential aspect to consider in the B2B industry. 

How can videos help a business get leads?

  1. Videos tell stories and urge action.
  2. Video content is short and easy to consume.
  3. Videos boost user experience by keeping them on the page.
  4. Videos drive traffic to your site from YouTube and social media, thus increasing SERP ranking chances.

Organic results are boosted from 10% to 250% when videos are added to existing content.

16. Page Experience Update

This update measures user experience on web pages and considers factors such as loading speed, interactivity, and visual stability. If your website takes ages to load and jumps around like a jackrabbit on caffeine, it’s time to shape up or ship out.

With this page experience update, Google is essentially telling website owners, “Hey, make your website a pleasant experience for users, or we’ll ensure that nobody finds it!”

The elements that add value to an effective page experience are shown in the image in the hyperlink.

17. Google MUM

Google MUM is the new AI model that’s going to change SEO. MUM stands for “Multitask Unified Model” and promises to revolutionize how we search for information online. It’s like having a personal research assistant at your fingertips.

MUM can understand natural language, interpret images and videos, and even generate content. So if you’re still stuck in the dark ages of keyword stuffing and link building, it’s time to embrace the future with MUM.

18. Core Web Vitals

Core Web Vitals (CWV) sounds like something you’d need to know for a medical exam, but they’re actually crucial for your website’s health. These are the essential metrics that Google uses to measure user experience on your website.

Core Web Vitals can be divided into three areas:

  • LCP: Largest Contentful Paint measures the time required for content to load.
  • FID: First Input Delay measures the time for that web page to be interactive.
  • CLS: Cumulative Layout Shift measures unexpected visual shifting.

Some facts to keep in mind are that:

  • If the page load time increases from one second to three seconds, the bounce rate increases by 32%.
  • If the page load time increases from one second to six seconds, the bounce rate increases by 106% (source: Google).

Even if other factors are up to par, Core Web Vitals still affect SEO. If your website is slow, unresponsive, or janky, it’s time to focus on these core web vitals. Think of it as giving your website a check-up and making sure it’s in tip-top shape.

19. Structured Data

Structured data helps search engines understand your website content and display it meaningfully for users. Structured data makes it easier for Google to understand what your web pages are about so that they appear in relevant searches. It essentially emphasizes more information and specific information.

With structured data, you can mark up your content with schema.org vocabulary. This allows search engines to categorize your content into specific types such as recipes, events, reviews, etc. If you’re not using structured data, it’s like driving around without a map. You might eventually get to your destination, but it’s going to take a lot longer and cause more confusion.

20. Continuous Scrolling SERPs

Instead of clicking on another page for additional results, users can now scroll down the page to see more results. While this feature has been available on mobile devices for some time, its introduction to desktop devices represents a significant shift in the way users interact with search results. Google says that continuous scrolling has led to a 15% increase in engagement with organic search results. This demonstrates the importance of providing a seamless and intuitive user experience for desktop searchers.

  • As a result of this update, CTR will drop down because people will be more likely to explore their options.
  • There will be more zero-click searches, because people may find their required information in titles and meta descriptions.
  • It results in more impressions on page two than before due to a better user experience.

Brands and businesses are actively updating their strategies to get the most benefits from changed user behavior as a result of this changed user experience by Google.

21. Funnel-Aligned and User-Journey-Oriented Content

Aligning content strategy with the sales funnel to improve conversions and sales works for 87% of marketers. The top stage (which focuses on brand awareness) is affected by AI, and companies should focus on the middle stage (which provides more targeted content) and the bottom stage (which aims to convert customers).

2023 SEO trends emphasize the importance of tracking and analyzing data to continuously refine content strategy for optimal results. This is done by prioritizing keywords in the middle and bottom of the funnel. Companies aim to compete with generic AI information and drive conversions and sales.

In a survey, 44% of users reported that their purchases are followed by effective how-to guides, 40% voted for product overviews, and 34% for case studies.

It’s time to create effective content mapping and follow it!