2020 has been a year of unpredictable happenings. The world witnessed many changes in the year 2020. With that in mind, if you are wondering what are changes to be expected in the world of online marketing, then you have come to the right place.
In this blog post, I’ll take you through 20 trends that are going to take the digital marketing industry by storm.
So, without further ado, let’s proceed.
1) Video Marketing will Boom
Whether you agree or not, video marketing will be the future and the next big thing. In fact, 92% of marketers feel that video is an important part of their marketing strategy.
Also, the growing number of people who consume video content proves the fact that video will rule the marketing world.
Video is one of the best ways by which brands and companies can increase their awareness, gain customer trust and increase their conversion. So, if the video is not part of your marketing strategy, you are surely losing some cash on the table.
2) Marketing personalization will be the key
The next big trend will be seen in marketing personalization. Today, most of the customers feel frustrated because the marketing message is not personalized by companies and brands. On the other hand, 80% of consumers are more likely to purchase a product if the marketing message is personalized.
This clearly indicates that personalization will become more important than ever.
Marketing personalization simply means using data to deliver a customized marketing message to each customer based on their preference and likes. This results in better conversions, building trust and improving customer experience.
3) Companies will invest more in content
Did you know?
Content marketing generates 3X more leads as compared to outbound marketing. That’s why more and more companies will invest in content marketing in the coming future.
In fact, few companies invest half of their marketing budget on content. This clearly means that content has a big role to play in the coming years.
4) Freelancing will be the next big thing
It is estimated that the gig economy will be worth $455 bn by 2023. Also, more and more companies are outsourcing their key tasks like content, marketing, SEO and a lot more.
This proves the fact that freelancing will be the next big thing.
Freelancing platforms like Fiver, Upwork and Freelancer have also given a boost to the gig economy. Hence, more and more people would opt for full-time freelancing as a career option.
5) SEO will become competitive
Gone are the days when you could rank your site for any given set of keywords in a short span of time. Today, with the growing number of websites on the internet, SEO has become more competitive.
Not only the websites but factors like Google algorithm, page speed and content consumption pattern has also increased the competition in SEO.
Hence, in the coming future, ranking a website will be more difficult than ever.
Following are the best tips to make the most out of SEO in 2021:
- Focus on creating content that satisfies the need of the user rather than creating long content.
- Increase your page loading time. Generally, a website should load within 2 to 3 seconds.
- Keep creating backlinks.
6) AR and VR will grow
AR and VR are growing at the pacing rate. I know you won’t believe me so let me give you a small stats. The global augmented reality (AR) and virtual reality (VR) market is expected to generate a revenue of $1,274.4 billion in 2030.
This means companies will invest more and more in AR and VR.
AR and VR will help companies and brands in creating better customer experiences, offering digital experiences of product or services, engaging with consumers and increasing conversions rates.
7) Website page speed will be more important
If you want to get maximum returns from your SEO efforts then you can’t ignore page speed. Google has officially said “page speed is a ranking factor”
If your site or any web page of a site takes longer than 3 seconds to load, then you won’t be getting fruitful results from your SEO efforts.
Page speed will not only impact your overall website ranking but also customer experiences, sales, conversions and a lot more.
Following are the tips to increase your website speed:
- Compress the images.
- Clear cache.
- Use CDN.
- Use a good hosting service.
8) Longer content won’t matter
You might have read millions of time on the internet that long-form content ranks well on Google.
But is it still working in 2021?
The answer is no.
I’ll tell you why. Ever since Brian Dean has popularized the skyscraper technique the internet is getting flooded with longer content than ever. The majority of bloggers and SEO experts think that creating long content will give them a better ranking.
However, this not the case.
I’ll explain it to you with a simple example.
Suppose you are searching for “how to make a tie” on Google. For this particular query, you don’t want to waste your time by reading a 2000+ words guide.
You just want to learn how to make a tie in a quick possible way. And, this can be easily done by creating a small 500-1000 words article.
Hence, long content will no longer be a prerequisite for good rankings on Google.
You just need to create content that satisfies the query of users correctly.
9) Updating content will be important
It is a known fact that nobody likes to read outdated stuff on the internet. That’s why Google keeps on showing more relevant, accurate, precise and updated information to its users.
Updating content will not only improve the SEO of your site but will also help you with driving traffic and improvising website authority.
However, fresh content does not always mean adding a new line or paragraph to your existing blog post. Fresh content means adding a new page or a blog post for the same keyword.
10) Backlinks will still be king
No matter how many updates does Google bring, backlinks will still be the top most important ranking factor in SEO. Without backlinks, it is next to impossible to rank any content.
Even Sparkto did research in 2019 and found that link is one of the top-ranking factors on Google.
I am not talking about forum links, social bookmarking and directory submission links.
Such kind of link won’t take you anywhere.
In 2021, focus on building contextual and editorial links which will have a significant impact on your search rankings.
11) You can’t rely on one marketing technique or strategy
Yes, if you want to take your digital marketing game to the next level, then you can’t just depend on one marketing channel. Depending on one marketing channel is a fatal mistake.
Finance experts say that one should never depend on a single source of income. In the same way, one should also never depend on a single marketing channel.
Due to the stringent increase in competition in the online world, it has become vital for every business to leverage multiple channels of marketing.
So, focus on leveraging online marketing techniques like;
- Social media marketing
- Email marketing
- Programmatic ads and a lot more.
12) You have spent more time on CRO
You might be thinking that once visitors vitis any e-commerce site, they’ll purchase a product in one go, right?
However, this is not the case. In most of the cases, visitors don’t purchase anything until and unless they are sure about the product quality, price and reviews.
This is where CRO comes into play.
CRO will help you in increasing the conversion rate by increasing the number of website visitors and improving the efficiency of your store.
13) Influencer marketing will grow
19% of marketers spend $1,000 – $10,000 per year on influencer marketing in 2020. It is also estimated that the influencer marketing industry will become USD 24.1 billion by 2025.
The above stats clearly prove that influencer marketing is going to play a big role in future.
In fact, companies and brands are investing heavily in influencer marketing irrespective of their budget capacity. This is simply because influencer marketing gives results.
Influencers can help you in increasing your brand awareness, enhance your reputation, improve your audience engagement and conversions as well.
14) Programmatic advertising
The global programmatic advertising market is expected to be at USD 5,123.12 Million by the end of 2025. This simply means that brands will shift towards programmatic in the near future.
With programmatic ads, you have great control and transparency over your online ads. You could actually see the sites on which your advertisements are reaching, the type of customer looking at the ad and of course, the cost associated with it as well.
All such benefits are not associated with normal Google ads or social media ads.
So, if you want to make the most out of online advertisement then switch to programmatic.
Chatbots have taken the digital marketing industry by storm. Fiance, retail, real estate, hospitality, manufacturing and every other industry is leveraging chatbots as part of their marketing campaign, but this is just a start.
It is estimated that 85% of customer interaction will be done by without humans by 2021.
This clearly means that companies might use chatbots in the future.
From interacting with your customers to reducing the marketing budget, Chatbots can help you with everything.
Gone are the days when people used to read normal textual content. Today, hardly any people prefer reading plain textual content. Nowadays people love content backed by images, infographics, videos and tons of visual creatives.
In fact, research proves that people love visual content more as compared to simple textual content.
Also, in the coming years, visual content will play a key role in a marketing campaign.
So, the next time you create any blog post or textual content, make sure to include images, videos and graphics in it.
17) Voice search
Did you know?
1 billion voice searches were made every month in 2018. 72% of people who use voice search says that it has become part of their daily lives. This clearly proves that the voice search is going to increase in the coming years.
So pull up your socks and make sure to optimize your website not only for mobile users but also from the point of view of voice search.
18) Website speed
I know that website speed is not on your top to-do list but it is surely one of the most important digital marketing trends to watch out for in 2021.
As the digital age is disrupting, websites act as a primary entry and exit point for customers in the online world. The speed of your website also determines whether a particular user will convert into a customer or not.
Once Amazon did research with their site and found that a 1-sec delay in website speed could cost them a loss of $1.6 billion.
With that in mind, each and every online business will focus on increasing website speed in the future.
Website speed will not only help you in improving your sales and conversion, but it will also help you in increasing your Google rankings.
In 2010, Google had announced website speed will be a ranking factor for desktop searches. And, in 2018, Google made another update which made site speed a ranking factor for mobile search as well.
Hence, you now left with no option but to increase the speed of your site.
19) Local SEO will rise
In the year 2014, Google came with an algorithm update called Pigeon. It focused on increasing the ranking of those websites that were targeting local keywords.
That’s because local searches were at the peak at that time.
Not only in 2014, but local SEO is still important in 2021.
If you don’t believe me then look at the stats below.
- 46% of all searches on Google are local in nature.
- 96% of users search online to find information about local businesses.
- Over 50% of local searches with the “near me” keyword will result in in-store visits.
This clearly brings me to the conclusion that local SEO will be trending in future.
20) UGC or User-generated content will grow
A few years ago, people thought that user-generated will not have a significant impact in the future. But today, user-generated content is part of the marketing strategy of almost every brand.
More than 86% of companies are using user-generated content in their marketing strategy. Also, more brands are planning to invest in user-generated content in the coming years.
So, if you want to take your marketing campaign to the level of awesomeness, then start leveraging UGC.
Digital marketing is dynamic in nature just as a technology. If cannot anticipate which strategy or technique will be working in future or not. So, in order to know the latest trends and techniques in the digital marketing world, you need to keep yourself updated.
Make sure that you read blog posts and news related to this field. This will keep you aware of all the relevant happenings in the world of online marketing and will help you in adapting to changes rapidly.
Niket Sharma is a blogger and SEO expert from Mumbai, India. He is also the Founder of The Digital Skipper, an IT service company in Mumbai that offers services like SEO, website designing, content writer, blogging and other online marketing services.