Happy New Year! 2018 has arrived and we’re sure you’ve got lots of exciting plans for your business over the next 12 months.
As a small business owner, your website is invaluable in letting clients and potential customers know who you are and what you’ve achieved. Therefore, it’s important to keep it as up to date as possible to demonstrate how seriously you take your business and that you’re prepared to compete with major players in your field.
But what aspects of online marketing should you be focusing on in 2018?
Top US-based marketing consultant Cameron Conaway has revealed what he believes will be the biggest digital marketing trends of the year in a recent piece for the Huffington Post. Here, we look at a few of the most important for you to focus on:
Voice-enabled search looks set to be huge this year, particularly after voice-controlled home assistants Google Home and Amazon Echo were among the most popular tech gifts this Christmas.
As a result, it’s vital that you take steps to optimise your website with appropriate keywords to boost the chances of it being picked as a result in voice searches. These artificial intelligence-powered devices might be clever, but they can only work with what you give them, so make sure you’re organising your website with voice search in mind.
Mr Conaway also highlighted the growing trend for journalists to make on marketing roles, applying their writing and reporting skills to the products or services companies are trying to sell, in a similar way to the growing content marketing trend.
Consumers increasingly want to read about the products they are thinking of purchasing, searching for reviews from other buyers, expert opinions and comment pieces. With this in mind, you should assess your content marketing strategy and look at applying some journalistic skills to your website to make you sound as authoritative and knowledgeable about the area you work in as possible.
Move your website to HTTPS
If your website isn’t on HTTPS, it’s unlikely that it will appear highly in search results this year, Mr Conaway warned. As a result, you could find yourself losing valuable traffic and even new business opportunities.
Websites that aren’t on HTTPS are not deemed to be as secure, but it can be a big task to move over a site that has a lot of content and a complicated structure.
If this is a challenge that you find yourself faced with, consider starting from scratch with a new simpler website and rebrand, employing all of the latest SEO best practice. It might be a lot of work now, but it should pay off in the long term.
Big data has been big news for several years now, but are you managing to gain informative and useful insights from the data you collect? If not, you might want to explore new ways to visualise your data – another of Mr Conaway’s tipped hot trends for online marketing in 2018.
Being able to see your data more clearly could help you to gain clearer insights from it, which could help to inform your future marketing and wider business decisions.