With Black Friday and Cyber Monday out of the way and Christmas now just around the corner, we take a look at what digital marketing trends are likely to dominate 2018.

From social media to PPC to artificial intelligence, there are some exciting prospects on the marketing horizon. 

To You, From Us

Hands up, how many of you think that remarketing a generic advert for your website because someone visited it is personal enough?

If you’re of this opinion, 2018 is going to be a monumental year, as personalisation of adverts will dominate how we advertise. Consumers no longer expect general adverts of a site, they expect to see exactly what they were browsing and related products to give a tailored, personalised experience with your brand.

Whilst, in some cases, over personalising adverts can lose the urgency and potency of the advert, tailoring an advert set to an individual’s customer journey can massively improve your conversion rate.

Alexa, Siri and Friends

Who needs friends when you can talk to your household appliances right? Ok, a bit extreme, but we think in 2018 we will definitely see an increase in voice search usage. 

Voice search is when you ask your Google Home, iPhone or Amazon Alexa to scour the internet for your search. Because we speak in a different way to how we would type a search query, it’s important that we adapt our on-site SEO to reflect this.

For example, you may optimise your site for shorter terms that people are more likely to search for via typing, but maybe you have overlooked the long tail keywords that tend to get searched by voice search? If you analyse your search terms, you may notice more and more “sentence like” search terms, indicating your customers are searching via voice search.

Definitely, one to watch in 2018.

A Robotic Uprising

With more and more voice searches being conducted daily on Google and other search engines, AI or artificial intelligence is being utilised more and more.

Google is now utilising AI to assist with the increased amount of traffic users are generating, which is why it’s important in 2018 that we focus our marketing efforts to reflect this.

Google algorithm updates could eventually make searches by humans a thing of the past due to a new phenomenon called “deep learning” by machine intelligence. This is a process where artificial intelligence learns how we interact with it, making the responses for our searches more and more specific, the more the technology learns.

In the beginning, you may search for “clothes shop near me” which will bring back a range of results that the AI thinks you want to see. However, the more you use the technology and the more the AI learns about your shopping habits, the searches will become more and more tailored to you.

Structuring Your Site

Have you noticed when you’re searching for a question or a local business, that your search results are becoming more and more specific to what you’re searching by showing snippets of a website?

This is because Google is using artificial intelligence to provide featured snippets and quick answers to make search results more relevant to your search.

In order to utilise these tools, you need to have structured data on your website, a key trend for 2018.

Let’s Be Social

Yes, social media has been a constant digital marketing trend for a number of years now, but we think 2018 is the year it comes into its own.

In the past few years, there has been an ideology that social media isn’t worth the time and money it takes to be successful, and it is more for big brands.

We wholeheartedly disagree with this and believe 2018 will be the year social media is adopted by almost every sector in the UK. In our opinion, whether you’re a local shop or a multinational organisation, social media can no longer be ignored, and the sooner your company adopts a strategy for it, the better!

What an Experience!

This is a phrase you’ll want your customers to be using in 2018, which is why we think 2018 will be a big year for customer experience online.

Whilst having a strong brand is important to your company, having a loyal customer base is almost more important. In order to get repeat custom, the experience with your brand needs to be on point.

A sleek website, perfect customer service and instant customer gratification is key to this. When on your website, customers in 2018 are going to want instant load speeds, live stock levels and their queries answered almost instantaneously.

Long gone are the days of waiting for a response and shipping taking up to 5 working days! Consumers in 2018 are wanting their demands met there and then, and a turnaround time of 24 hours.

Streamlining your existing website to reflect these needs is going to be crucial in 2018.

The Usual Suspects

As well as these technology busting trends for 2018, there are two marketing trend stalwarts that still need to be considered.

The first of these is video marketing, which in 2018 is going to continue to drive engagement and an improved CTR. From Facebook and Instagram live to vlogging on YouTube, your brand needs to be engaging in video and animation to stay relevant in 2018!

 

The second aspect to consider is content. You can’t optimise your website for search engines anymore, they’re too smart (remember the AI section?)

Search engines can now tell when you’re trying to optimise for them, which is why you need to optimise for your customer. To do this, content is key!

Having more, informative relevant content on your website is much more valid than having a keyword string that you want to rank for on the majority of your web pages. So, get your writers hat on, and get to work with making sure your web page content is of use to your customer base, and the search engines will reward you for it!

What We Can Do:

If this all sounds complicated – don’t worry, we can help you make 2018 your year! Get in touch today.

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