As we enter 2016, it’s important that your business is primed to take advantage of the five digital marketing trends that we foresee.
- Bring on the Mobile App
In April 2015, Google with its Panda update changed its algorithm to reward mobile friendly websites with a ranking boost. Google began using information indexed from mobile apps as a factor in search rankings. Although app indexing has taken off, businesses are playing catch up, primarily because apps are more responsive to individual users and can be more convenient. While mobile responsive websites aren’t going anywhere just yet, 2016 will be a telling year in the adoption of apps by business owners.
- More mobile internet users than desktop
Mobile usage will completely surpass desktop usage in 2016. Somewhere in May 2015, Google’s Adwords blog post stated that “more Google searches take place on mobile devices than on computers in 10 countries including the US and Japan”. While desktop traffic won’t disappear entirely, Google is obviously anticipating that mobile traffic will dominate.
- Siri & Cortana will make some noise.
In the past, most digital marketing strategies have relied on search engine optimization (SEO) and pay-per-click (PPC) marketing. Now, digital assistants such as Siri (Apple) and Cortana (Microsoft) can be optimized to answer consumers’ questions. In 2016, more and more businesses will be looking to ensure their businesses can be easily found via virtual assistants rather than simply listing the information on the web.
- Virtual reality emergence
A bunchful of virtual reality devices are scheduled to launch in the next couple years. Some are built for video games, while others are designed for more general use such as Oculus Rift, the highly anticipated virtual reality head-mounted display headset slated to launch within the first quarter of 2016. The popularity of Oculus Rift and other such VR devices will bring in an entirely new form of online advertising that connects social media platforms, video channels and direct messaging applications.
- Wear IT, Flaunt IT
Wearables will continue to gain God speed in 2016. The Apple Watch, a first generation smartwatch, was released in 2015 and more smartwatches are scheduled to launch this year. Globally, consumer uptake of wearables is expected to grow 35 percent per year between 2015 and 2019, which will have a large impact on marketing strategies. Because the devices’ screens are so small web and app content should be shorter, favoring a “listicle” format over a traditional article format. Wearables also require online marketers to think about how to best provide “on-the-go” information, as well as create content that is easily searchable via voice commands.