The Year in Review: What We Saw in 2016

Ryan Clutter

Ryan Clutter

12/27/2016

The digital marketing world is becoming more complex. There are new trends and tactics beginning to take shape, and you can use these trends and shifts to help form the base of your marketing plan in 2017.

While we expect more changes and shifts to come, with more importance being placed on certain aspects of your marketing campaign, we’ve already discussed ways to prepare for 2017.

In today’s technological era with a focus on relevance, how are you reaching your customers? You have to keep advancing with the times and modifying your campaign to see the best results.

Here’s a recap of the biggest marketing tactics we’ve seen in 2016.

Further Integration Within Marketing Campaigns

You can no longer just solely focus on SEO or social media. You can’t think of these as separate strategies. All aspects of digital marketing are now intertwined, complementing each other on the same path to conversions.

We’ve been pushing this technique for a while, including all aspects into campaigns for our clients to help them see the best results. As we head into 2017, we’re focusing on the software and tools that can track all of our efforts so you can make informed decisions regarding your digital strategy.

Throughout 2016, we’ve seen the rise of social media marketing and video marketing that hits home for your consumer. While organic optimization and paid marketing help you get found in Google Search, content marketing and social media help you get found on platforms where your customers are present.

The better you can integrate your strategies online, the more consumers you’ll reach and the more business you’ll drive through an online presence.

Cross-Device Remarketing

Your customers are using multiple devices throughout the day. From cell phones to tablets and laptops or desktops, brands can now stay in front of their audience throughout the day with cross-device remarketing.

The feature for Google’s Display Network helps you target your ads to signed-in users no matter the device they’re using. This way, once a signed in Google user visits your website, you can keep your brand top of mind by showing ads for promotions or limited time offers. This helps you close the gap from interest to conversion.

You have complete control over your ads, determining when and how often to display them to your customers. Learn more about this feature and how you can be taking advantage by contacting us.

Snapchat

Social networks continue to battle for new users and Snapchat is leading the way in terms of engagement. They are set for a consecutive double-digit growth as they have surpassed the likes of Twitter and Pinterest for active users. Currently, there are over 301 million active users on a monthly basis and 150 million active daily users.

Through filters and advertisements, there is a huge chance for brands to gain exposure through Snapchat. Plus, with the Snapchat Spectacles launching and it becoming easier to share videos in a hands-free way, you can put your office, products, or job on display as you increase your following.

But how can you use Snapchat for marketing? The stories are used to engage and excite audiences, and they disappear after 24 hours. It’s great content to consume in a concise manner while growing brand awareness. Take your followers behind the scenes and deliver private content that your audience won’t have access to on your other social platforms.

It will continue to be a valuable social channel and help you retain some customers. It’s an integrated approach. Use Snapchat to leverage your brand and engage with your customers.

Focus on AMP

Accelerated Mobile Pages were first launched in February of 2016 and seen as an answer to Facebook’s Instant Articles. Delivered with lightning-fast speed from Google’s hosted cache, AMP pages help drive traffic to newly published blogs and other publisher articles.

AMP is the talk of the industry, and we’re able to help make sure you’re set up for the future with AMP pages to enhance your user’s experience. Google is focused on creating a platform that integrated speed and allows users to find and consume information they care about quickly.

AMP suffices that need, and will continue to grow and develop through the coming years.

RankBrain in Full Effect

Artificial intelligence is a trend that is here to stay. We’re beginning to search differently than we have in the past. We’re asking Google and search engines specific questions rather than the vague queries that have dominated keyword research for years.

We’re focusing more on longer-tailed queries that don’t have the highest search volume but will lead to more conversions. While links and content remain the two most important factors in your marketing campaign, we’ve learned this year that RankBrain is the third most important ranking signal.

Natural language is the search trend of 2016 and beyond. With RankBrain held in high regard with its ranking signal, we’re focusing on the content and links while adhering to natural language search to help you dominate your industry.

Penguin Running Real Time

As search algorithms continue to advance and RankBrain has quickly risen, we can’t forget about Google Penguin. SEOs and digital marketers were preparing for a potential impact with the latest update to Google’s Penguin algorithm.

When Google released Penguin 4.0 in September, a new announcement came that Penguin would now be incorporated into the core algorithm, updating in real-time. You will have to remain focused on your link profile as you won’t be updated when a major Penguin impact is planning to take place. The regular crawling process leaves pages caught or freed from a Penguin penalty on a consistent basis.

Through the release, we learned that with its granular process, specific pages will be targeted and penalized; not whole sites. Remember that it is constantly updating. Pay attention to your link profile to determine whether you need to make adjustments to keep your website in Google’s good graces.

Mobile First Index

2016 has been the year of mobile. Google sees that, and the change has affected how the search giant will index your website. When you submit a page or a post onto your website, you have to wait for Google to index and cache the page before you start seeing any boost in ranking.

When creating new pages and posts now, but a focus on mobile with the November announcement of Google’s mobile-first index. If you have a mobile responsive website where you’re providing the same experience across devices, you won’t need to worry about a thing, but there are still companies and brands out there that aren’t focusing on mobile yet.

You have to make sure that the content and links on the mobile site are near or identical to the desktop version so Google can crawl the proper content and rank your site at the same position as you’re seen on desktop.

Getting Ready for Digital Assistants

With the Google Home and Amazon Echo, we’re beginning to talk to search engines. We’re asking questions and interacting with digital assistants. We’re aiming for convenience, so while businesses and brand won’t benefit when you want to play a song on Pandora or watch a TV show on Netflix, there are certain long-tail questions and queries that you can win for, increasing your brand awareness with voice search.

That’s the race for the featured snippet. With voice search queries, featured snippet answers are on the rise, allowing digital assistants to bring the most relevant information to answer searcher’s questions. As Google Home and Amazon Echo are integrated into more and more homes, you must see the potential heading into 2017 for voice search and how you can benefit.

A Digital Marketing Year in Review

It has been quite a year. There was no shortage of updates and advancements in the digital marketing industry. Our team here at 1SEO has stayed up to date, understands the advances, and provides your campaign with the best services that are focused on the future.

The digital marketing industry is evolving. We’re embracing that change and making sure your campaign continues to improve.

In a year that started with a Powerball jackpot that reached over $950 million, and was ruled by “Hamilton,” fake news, Pokémon GO and Donald Trump, it ends with the Dallas Cowboys sitting at 13 wins with one week to play before they see a shocking defeat in the divisional round of the NFL playoffs. Or so we can hope.

For digital marketing, we are hoping to see you and your company rise to the top of search engines while your brand awareness continues to grow with an integrated approach. Do you need a partner for 2017? Let us help you stand out.

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