Digital marketing is made up of a lot of moving parts – SEO, social media, marketing automation, PPC, and more. New technologies, techniques, and ever-changing Google and Facebook algorithms keep many digital marketing teams on their toes, including ours. Part of our job is to stay up-to-date on the upcoming trends so our clients’ digital marketing campaigns remain effective.
As we enter a new decade and tech continues to change at a rapid pace, here are the digital marketing trends we’re excited to see more of in 2020!
1) Voice Search
Have you observed a 4-year-old kid searching for his favourite video on YouTube? Since he does not know to type the kid commands and this exactly is the behaviour on rising.
Over 2019, you can expect people to start using voice search more than the routine type in. Which means, long-tail keywords will dominate.
Instead of searching for digital marketing trends in 2019, your voice search would probably be: What are the latest digital marketing trends for 2019. Start optimizing your blog for voice search with similar keyword structure.
2) Artificial Intelligence Chatbots
As per Gartner, 25% of customer service will use chatbot technology by 2020. Websites with chatbots will have higher conversion rates when compared to a website without chatbots. These chatbot experiences will prevail around messenger, WhatsApp and all forms of chat. AI-based chatbots will also be deployed with the duty to increase user engagement with the brand.
Fortunately for Facebook, their greatest threat is no threat at all since they bought Instagram. The image and video-based social media platform are optimized to make it very easy for users to share photos and videos from their phone, which is now the most ubiquitous computing device on the planet and rapidly growing as the computer of choice for the general public.
Instagram’s meteoric rise has already passed one billion users, an impressive achievement. That means it’s one of the most rapidly growing social media platforms and, perhaps more importantly, much of its user-base is the coveted younger demographic, especially under 30, that Facebook is losing, due to its reputation as the social media platform for “old people.”
4) Video Marketing
A total of 73% of all Americans engage with YouTube. That means more than half of all Americans are watching videos, and a lot of those videos are created in the service of digital marketing. While YouTube may be the most popular way to consume videos, even more popular than Facebook, that doesn’t mean that you shouldn’t be putting videos on Facebook or any of the other social media platform for that matter.Video digital marketing, in some ways, offers the best of both worlds. The actual budgeting and mechanics of video production are well understood and documented, since video itself is a 20th century medium. However, now video is paired with the incredibly accurate and valuable user metrics of digital media to provide much more useful data on how specific efforts are performing. Whether you’re creating videos for Instagram, Facebook, YouTube or even your own website, it is a top-tier, incredibly effective digital marketing tool. You can capture and convey a lot of information and your brand’s personality with video. As long as you stick to the fundamentals of good video production, you can make impressive gains.
5) Shoppable Post on Instagram
By now, you know that social media is a huge part of online marketing. What you might not realize is just how many people shop on social. 60% of Instagram users say they discover new products on Instagram and in a survey of over 4,000 Pinterest users, a whopping 70% said Pinterest helps them find new products.
These platforms have taken note of the fact that people are using them to shop and have made it easier for merchants to sell via social media. Over the past few years, Instagram, Pinterest, and Facebook all have ways for eCommerce stores to create shoppable posts using a native integration that makes it easy to tag and shop products directly in your posts. For online retailers, this is a great way to drive traffic to product pages.
6) Social Messaging Apps
Social media apps like Facebook Messenger, WeChat, and WhatsApp aren’t just for messaging friends anymore. These apps are becoming popular ways for businesses to communicate with their customers. In fact, Facebook Messenger sees over 10 billion messages exchanged between individuals and businesses each month.
Messaging apps are popular for businesses because customers find it convenient to have direct contact with companies. In addition, it allows for extremely personalized marketing, which we already know people love.
Here are a few ways businesses are using messaging apps:
- Establishing contact and building relationships
- Educating customers about their business/products
- Boosting sales
- Inviting people to events
- Regaining potential customers
- Providing customer support
7) Influencer Marketing
Influencer marketing has been around for several years now, and it’s not going away any time soon. Influencers used to be huge celebrities or “internet celebs” with tens of thousands of followers but now, companies are turning to people with much a smaller social media following to be influencers. Leveraging influential people on social media allows you to reach their audience with a voice that they trust.
You can find influencers by looking for people who reach your target demographic and then sponsoring them as a brand advocate. Brands that leverage influencers to spread their message see an ROI 11X higher than they do with other digital marketing methods.
8) Content Marketing
Is content still king in 2020? You better believe it!
Not only does content demonstrate knowledge and expertise to potential customers reading your articles or pages, but it’s also what search engines put in their search results. In short, content fuels the fire that is your search engine optimization, so it’s best to never stop creating content. In 2020, focus on creating interactive content and videos.
9) Page Speed
Page speed has been important for several years and it will continue to be vital to your website’s success in 2020. 25% of users will abandon a page if it doesn’t load in four seconds and they’re not likely to come back. Focus on improving your page speed in 2020 and watch your site’s performance improve!
Get your website full report here
10) Pinterest Lens
Not surprisingly, Pinterest has jumped on the visual search bandwagon. They came out with Lens, a visual search tool that allows users to take a photo of an item to find out where to buy it online, search for similar products or view pinboards of related items.
Since the launch of the beta version, Pinterest’s Lens now recognizes 2.5 billion home and fashion objects, has inspired over 600 million searches on Pinterest’s mobile apps and browser extensions, and has seen a 140% uptick from launch day.
Pinterest has continued to update its functionality:
- They introduced Pincodes, a QR code-type technology that enables you to find inspiration while you’re out shopping or flipping through your favorite magazines.
- They launched Lens Your Look to take the guesswork out of outfit planning.
- They partnered with brands like Samsung to bring visual search to its latest smartphones and Target to allow customers to search their catalog using related products they see in the real world.
- They’ve fully automated Shop the Look, a feature that helps users buy products from companies that work with Pinterest, so you can, for example, buy a pair of jeans you see in a picture.
- They launched a bunch of new tools to help merchants sell their products, including Catalogs, which lets anyone upload and convert their entire product catalogue into shoppable Pins.
Make sure you are optimizing for visual search, because (not surprisingly) the top search categories for Lens are:
- Home decor
11) Bing Visual Search
with Bing Visual Search, you can search for a specific element within an image without having to go through all the current hoops.
For example, say you’re looking for kitchen decoration inspiration and an image attracts your attention. You click on a thumbnail result to get to the “Detail View.” The overall décor is great, but you’re particularly interested in that nice-looking chandelier. Wouldn’t you love to know where you can get one just like it? With Bing Visual Search, now you can.
12) Social Media Stories
To keep it all straight, here’s a social media stories timeline:
Since these types of stories disappear after a set period of time, this is a great opportunity for marketers to make good use of FOMO (fear of missing out).
The benefits of using social media stories include:
- Increased brand awareness
- Constant engagement with followers
- Increased traffic to your web page
- Opportunity to reach younger audiences
Get inspired by some of these ways to use social media stories:
- Use polls within Instagram Stories
- Add links to your social media Stories
- Take advantage of Snapchat geofilters
- Add location tags
- Add mentions for other brands and your fans
- Give live video a try when creating Stories
- Invite followers to explore more with clear call-to-actions
13) Browser Push Notifications
Push notifications are on the rise, with 85% of online stores using them in 2019. Consider these other stats:
- At least twice as many people sign up for web push notifications compared to a newsletter.
- Only 10% of the best email marketers can achieve a newsletter sign-up rate that matches the performance of web push.
- 6.4 hours is the average time that passes before the recipient opens a newsletter. In the case of web push, the recipient will see the message immediately.
The updates to the GDPR (General Data Protection Regulations) and stricter filters have dented the potency of email marketing. Moreover, the younger audience favors other methods of communication and prefers to deal with less touchpoints when engaging brands.
As part of the bid to engage users on multiple channels, browser push notifications are something you will see more and more brands adopting in 2020 – and they are getting more sophisticated and personalized. In fact, using personalized push notifications increases conversions:
- 7% open rate for segmented push messaging compared to a 3% open rate for generic, broadcast messages (a 2x improvement)
- 54% of users convert from a segmented push notification, compared to only 15% for broadcast messages (a 3x improvement)
Notifications triggered by behavior are being used to re-engage people who have shown interest but failed to convert, and in recovering revenue from abandoned shopping carts.
14) Progressive Web Apps (PWAs)
Progressive Web Apps are essentially websites that work like mobile apps. They offer the functionality of a native mobile app – fast load times, push notifications, working offline, utilizing device hardware, etc. – without being limited to one platform (which in reality means Android or iOS).
This allows development teams to create web apps for any device that works just like a mobile app.
By 2020, the number of smartphone users is expected to reach 2.87 billion. With total page views on mobile increasing year-over-year by almost 50% worldwide, mobile is more crucial than ever to your digital strategy:
PWAs are going to become ever-more prevalent as the mobile revolution continues at pace.
15) Blockchain Technology
As defined by Blockgeeks:
“A blockchain is, in the simplest of terms, a time-stamped series of immutable data records that is managed by a cluster of computers not owned by any single entity. Each of these blocks of data (i.e. block) is secured and bound to each other using cryptographic principles (i.e. chain).”
The uses of blockchain are far more wide-reaching than just the financial world, however; this technology is also making waves in the digital marketing world. Blockchain eliminates the digital marketing intermediary, builds trust by means of transparency, drives public accountability and offers benefits for branding.
But in 2020 and beyond, we’ll see these trends in the blockchain:
- Tracking Media Buys
- Handling Social Impressions
- Verifying Online Identities
- Elevate Transparency
- Protect Personal Data
- Pinpoint Targeting
- Authentication and Provenance
Now is the time to start planning your 2020 marketing strategy if you haven’t already. Make sure you start the New Year with a clear plan of your goals and how you’re going to achieve them.