How Marketing Will Change in 2020!
Digital marketing is always evolving, but 2020 marks a particularly special year. As we enter a new decade, several new technologies have been planned to make the internet more powerful and engaging. From AI to 5G to emerging online marketing strategies, the 2020s internet will make the last decade’s internet just as ancient as the nineties. Here are the key new digital marketing changes for you to explore in 2020.
1. Response to Google’s BERT Update
Algorithm updates by Google, the gatekeeper of the internet for which sites get high ratings, are important for website owners and managers to follow. It can mean the difference between higher or lower search rankings.
Google’s November 2019 update is based on innovative coding called BERT, which stands for bidirectional encoder representations from transformers. It’s expected to affect as many as 10% of all websites. The reason BERT is important is that it will refine and improve Google searches to be based more on full sentences rather than just keywords.
2. Voice Dominates Search
One thing websites cannot ignore to maintain or improve search rankings is to be optimized for voice search. A recent BrightLocal survey found that 58% of U.S. consumers conduct local business searches by voice on their smartphones. Nearly two-thirds of this group say they conduct at least one voice search per week to find a local business.
These figures are expected to keep climbing in 2020. Google Assistant and Apple Siri are by far the leading voice assistants, so it’s a good idea to make sure your site works well with those searches. About the same amount use smart speakers for these searches. Other surveys show that consumers enjoy high levels of satisfaction with the help of virtual assistants. According to ComScore, half of all searches today are through voice search.
source: Search Engine Land / Microsoft, 2019
3. Structured Markup Facilitates Voice Search
The key to getting the attention of Google for voice search is to use its Structured Data Markup Helper, an easy-to-use developer tool. Visit this tool on Google and click the data type, enter your URL then click the “start tagging” button. Data types include articles, events, movies, software applications, and more. The tool generates HTML for your web pages to help Google understand them better.
4. Live Videos Help Drive Engagement
Facebook, YouTube, Instagram, and Snapchat are havens for visual presentations, which is why engagement for live videos on these platforms is increasing. Although reach is decreasing for videos due to rising competition, the key is to create a multicast, which is video used for multiple purposes. You can increase engagement on various platforms by repurposing the same video or different clips from the same video. Live videos create shared experiences in real-time, which is why they attract better engagement than static content.
5. Spread of Bite-Sized Educational and Interactive Content
For awhile, infographics were the rage for shared online content, due to compressing vast amounts of knowledge in images with easy-to-read data points. Then infographics got too complex with bigger images, full of comprehensive data, making them slower to load and scroll through. After a while, these versions became too cumbersome and easy to ignore.
The new trend is toward bite-sized informative images that contain one or a few bits of useful knowledge. The more educational and interactive this content is, the better, but keep each info-bite concise. Keep the informative content down to a one-sentence overview. These images work best when presented in a series on a web page and should be mobile-friendly. Smaller infographics will outperform the larger ones in social engagement.
6. More Buying Directly on Google
It’s now possible to sell items from your site directly on Google, which competes with Amazon. Google’s “buy now” button through its Purchases on Google program lets your customers purchase your items directly without visiting your site. Expect the search giant to find new ways to facilitate its marketplace in the future as more and more shopping is done online.
You may have read in news reports that over 9,300 brick-and-mortar stores announced closures in 2019, which was a significant increase from the prior year. One of the big reasons for this mass exodus was due to the rising popularity of shopping on smartphones. It’s simply easier, more convenient, and more economical to buy items from a mobile device than to waste gas driving around town looking for deals that might not exist.
7. Better Deals on Influencer Marketing
Due to the internet being crowded with over a billion blogs, the reach for influencers has declined. Even social media engagement has peaked for thought leaders because of over-saturation. Analytics firm Influencer.db reported in July 2019 that overall engagement on Instagram had fallen to an all-time low. While this news may not be great for the top bloggers, its an opportunity for lesser-known bloggers to pay lower advertising rates to influencers. In 2020, a winning strategy for digital marketers will be to increase advertising on a higher quantity of established influencer sites.
8. Shared Virtual Reality Experiences
Virtual reality (VR) has proven to be more than a trend and is undoubtedly here to stay. In 2020, you will see much more emphasis placed on shared VR experiences among digital marketers. The real estate industry has helped usher in this next frontier with 360-degree views of homes for potential buyers. Virtual tours are excellent for promoting theme parks and other unique places of interest for travelers.
9. Omnichannel Marketing Rises
You may already know about omnichannel marketing, which is using multiple channels to sell products. But some people are using the term interchangeably with multi-channel experiences even though there’s a subtle difference.
Multichannel is simply using different marketing channels, such as your website, email, and social media. It’s not considered omnichannel until all of these channels merge into an integrated, seamless experience. Messages must be consistent across all channels. Furthermore, all your marketing channels must converge with sales and customer service. The best way to accomplish this experience is to design a user-friendly app that works as a hub for all your channels. Look for the omnichannel experience to be more visible across several industries.
10. Customization Options Will Expand
One of the most important reasons to outsource to a digital design agency that handles all aspects of web development is for customization of specific web features. Template-driven sites don’t attract as many eyeballs as unique sites with impressive designs and original, in-depth content.
Your website can be much more competitive by investigating these emerging marketing trends for the next frontier. Reach out to us at Simplemachine to learn more about how we can improve your website design, content, and traffic.