As we enter the new year, we invariably turn our collective focus toward improvement. What can be optimized, escalated, expanded, and enhanced in order to more accurately reflect our best selves. This interest in advancement is not limited to the scope of our personal lives, of course, it spreads to all aspects of business as well. When it comes to marketing a business on the web these days, the array of options and potential directions which can be taken is dizzying. With this in mind, we’re going to take a quick look at the most impactful and prominent trends in web development for the coming year.
Native Advertising & Content
The first area which is being widely identified as an important one to follow for this year is native advertising. Native ads are embedded in websites or pages and provide content which matches the overall look and feel of the host site. Most native ads follow the same editorial form and style of the page on which they appear, creating a more congruent and natural experience for viewers. Native advertising is flexible, adaptable, and provides nearly limitless options for creativity and customization. When combined with content marketing, native ads have the ability to be both engaging and enjoyable to users. With an estimated 74% of ad revenue expected to be driven by native advertising by the year 2021, it’s clear that the time to throw your hat in the ring is now.
Additional Opportunities: Native Advertising can be dynamically optimized for individual user profiles and preferences, allowing businesses to target content specifically to a particular type of user.
Mobile Mobile Mobile!
Every year we discuss the importance of optimizing your website and marketing activities for mobile users, and this year is no different. With more than half (51%) of web visits now originating from mobile devices, it has never been more important to implement a mobile-first strategy. Mobile phones are so prevalent, really, that it’s difficult to refer to this as a trend anymore at all. The entirety of our lives are increasingly centered around our phones, and that’s something marketers would do well to make note of. As always, Google drives the lions share of mobile search traffic (96%), so it is important to make use of their optimization and analytics tools to keep on top of your positioning.
Value in Video
One last thing to take note of is the rise of video. For the first time, Youtube has more monthly unique users than Google. This is significant because it demonstrates how important video content has become to consumers of media. Video has increasingly become a medium for providing engaging and interesting content to potential clients. Anyone can make interesting and entertaining video, and when it’s done well, users will interact with it and share widely among their own networks. This activity provides valuable organic reach. A video need not go viral to be effective, it is enough for it to be valuable and amusing to the target audience.
Additional Opportunities: Quirky or unique and engaging how-to videos are a good place to start and are applicable across most businesses and industries.
The trends covered in this article are by no means the extent of things to watch this year, but they are three very important and actionable items for any business to look at and think about. The web marketing landscape is constantly changing and evolving, providing endless opportunities for developing and enhancing your marketing strategy. As always, feel free to contact us if you’d like some advice or direction in analyzing your current efforts or implementing new marketing plans.