It’s time for some crystal ball gazing again. The world of digital marketing continues to evolve rapidly, and the landscape is bound to be different in twelve months’ time from what it is now. Here are our thoughts and predictions for the trends we will see in the year ahead:
Mobile will completely dominate
This is not so much a prediction of something new – more a statement of an established trend that will continue. Less and less online business is being done on desktops and laptops, and Google has already virtually phased out from its results pages all websites that are not optimised for mobile devices. If your site is not already optimised, get it updated now – and if you’re having a new site built, pay even more attention to the mobile version than the desktop one.
Wearable technology will become more common
Recent years have brought us the Apple iWatch, Google Glass, and more. A noticeable trend in the run up to the Christmas season just gone by was the number of ‘budget’ smart watches being advertised at bargain prices. As these prices continue to tumble, expect to see more people using these devices – and expect to see changes in the digital arena because of that.
Google will change its algorithm. And then change it again.
This one is a nailed-on surefire bet, as it happens every year. With so much new information being added to the internet every single second of the day, Google is constantly working on making sure its top results are most relevant, most informative, and most helpful. Nobody knows what exact effects their next change will bring – but as always, the best advice is to continue to make sure your website is populated with fresh, compelling content, that will first attract the user and then keep them there.
PPC will become more expensive
As more companies turn to PPC advertising and increase their budgets accordingly, competition for the top spots increases. This in turn means that those top spots become more expensive. But remember that surveys show that more than 70% of people still trust organic results more than paid-for ones. So, if you don’t have the pocket or the stomach for a potentially-expensive PPC battle, put your time and money into organic SEO instead.
The rise of the chatbots
We’re already seeing this more and more in larger, international companies – where a chatbox appears at the corner of your screen with a ‘hi, what can I help you with?’ message and live support at all hours of day and night. Irish companies tend to be a little slower than American ones, for example, in following such trends – but still, expect to see them become more common by the end of the year.
But still some constants
Despite all the changes though, there will still be some constants. Effective and ongoing SEO will keep you towards the top of the pile. Community management on your social media channels will allow you build your brand and develop closer relationships with your customers. Effective use of all analytics tools will show you what’s working well, what’s not working so well, and what needs immediate attention.
At Abbott Consulting, we continue to stay on the ball with new trends, but we continue to perform all the old reliables too.
If you’re on a monthly contract with us, you’ll know that already. If you’re a past client who we haven’t heard from in some time, give us a call and we’ll look at how we can improve things for you. And if you’re looking for a new digital marketing partner, get in touch too, and we’ll tell you how we can deliver results better than the rest.