Every year around this time, a lot of digital marketers and digital marketing companies will write a blog about the trends to be aware of for the new year. Far be it from us to go against the grain, these are the 5 key trends we feel your business needs to be aware of for 2017, considering the Northern Ireland market. It is only through being aware of these trends, that you can place your business to take advantage
1. Mobile will become the most important device
It’s already been a big year for mobile, it’s gone from strength to strength and it’s poised now to overtake desktop and tablet by a big way in 2017. If your company is B2C then mobile should be your focus. B2B can still be reliant on desktop in some cases. Mobile apps are not dead, and can add another dimension to your mobile site. We have a blog on mobile site development that you can read here.
Video ads are taking over. They are the fastest growing ad format along with being the format driving the highest ROI when they are done right. Live streaming is also exploding – Facebook are heavily promoting Facebook Live, and Instagram & Snapchat have both added features to make this easier for brands. Users are now inundated with content everywhere they turn so to catch attention it needs to be original and useful content – at the minute there isn’t a better way to do this than with video. We have a blog on Snapchat in the Northern Ireland market here.
Content has always been king in digital, it has always been important. However, unique, high quality content will become even more important in 2017. As we’ve already mentioned users are getting hit by content from all angles. It is vital your content is engaging and will catch the eye of users. As well as this there will be search engine updates, and plenty of them. More and more businesses are coming online at an unbelievable rate – which means there is more content and data being put online vying for your attention. Google etc will continue to update their algorithms to ensure the best information is displayed for each search. The way to stay ahead with these updates is by having fresh, original content. We have written a content marketing blog with great examples of content marketing here.
4. CRO: Conversion Rate Optimisation
In 2017 there will be a lot of noise from other websites and other services vying for the attention of your potential customers. So, when you’ve gone to all the effort of developing a website and the digital marketing effort to get them there – you need to make it count when the user comes on to your website. This means your website needs to optimised fully for the conversion of that user from a potential customer, to a customer. There are plenty of ways to do this, from making sure your website is clearly laid out, clear conversion paths and testing (A/B or multivariate).
Those 4 digital trends are nailed on to be massive. But we thought we’d throw in a trend that is slightly left field. It is massive for big businesses in the UK and America, so maybe not as important to the small, local business in Northern Ireland just yet. But you need to be aware of number 5, because it is coming.
5. Digital becoming more personalised through AI virtual assistants, chatbots & messagebots
There’s Siri & Alexa that you will probably already be aware of, and Google and Facebook are putting huge resources into their chatbots and it’s already revolutionising sectors such as healthcare. Artificial intelligence will continue to improve which will make these assistants part of our lives very very soon. Eventually we will be able to shop through them, and book appointments and transport tickets. This is a really exciting area and growing quickly.
Get in touch with us if you have any queries about getting your business ready to take advantage of any of these trends in 2017.