As of this year, Forbes reports that 89% of the population in North America is now digitally connected online. While some aspects of the move to digital are clear, such as the shift to consumer entertainment on mobile devices or choosing to shop online for personal consumer products, the shift to digital marketing for B2B and B2C companies is less obvious, but critical to the success or your business. If you want to reach your customers in 2019, you need to fully embrace the digital space they use when researching information about your products and services.
1. Data Science for Digital Marketing is Here Now
Tracking success online used to mean hooking up Google Analytics or other tracking software to your website, checking basic metrics on LinkedIn and Facebook, seeing how many opens your email blast received, and then trying to find a way to tie it into meaningful KPIs for your business. This is no longer good enough.
With the dramatic expansion of digital marketing comes an avalanche of data from digital assets such as website analysis, online advertising, email marketing automation, keyword research, campaign management, video views, mobile apps and more. Many marketers have been engulfed by the sheer volume of data that can be overwhelming and are left unsure of how to gauge the overall success of their marketing programs.
Google Data Studio, DOMO, MOZ, Tableau, and a host of other data aggregation and visualization tools are now available to help marketing teams organize and make sense of this ocean of information. These tools have been around for a few years, but they’re just now becoming robust and stable enough to count on as industry standard business intelligence resources.
2. Speed Is More Important Than Ever
For the past few years we’ve been aware that websites need to be fast and engaging. Google has made this extremely clear by adding a new organic ranking algorithm in July 2018 that rewards sites with fast, mobile coding. The effects of a slow website can be dramatic, lowering your organic ranking and losing perhaps 30-50% of your website traffic before your page finishes loading.
The impact of slow web servers, bloated website code, and poorly developed mobile formatting is now front-and-center. Because of this, new tools such as Pagespeed Insights, Think With Google, and Test My Site have become valuable assets for your website maintenance program.
Are you missing out on new leads due to a slow website? We can help.
3. Website Schema & Structured Data is Underused in B2B Marketing
As search engines continue their march towards AI technologies, the role that website schema plays in generating traffic and higher search engine results will grow in 2019. Schema is a special type of markup code, found inside your website’s HTML code, that is designed to provide quick access to important company and product information, helping instruct search engines what your site and company is all about.
Many B2C websites have been applying schema and structured data for a while now, but most B2B companies are still not employing these industry best practices. Forward thinking B2B companies will be implementing this strategy in 2019.
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4. Visual Search & Video Will Continue to Take Over
Search Engine Results Pages (SERPs) have become increasingly complex with dozens of possible components potentially appearing above organic web page rankings, giving a very real possibility that an image or video might be what captures the attention of your prospective customers.
It’s widely accepted that the majority of all internet traffic will be video by 2020. This isn’t just personal entertainment but it’s also product and company reviews found online or embedded into a website.
If you don’t have a solid video plan for your B2B marketing strategy in 2019, you’ll miss out in being able to engage with consumers in the most rapidly growing segment of the digital landscape.
5. Digital Advertising Must Be Multi-faceted
It’s no longer enough to have a single advertising channel or method to promote your business online. Gone are the days in which you could place a few Google AdWords ads to help supplement your organic website traffic. In fact, AdWords is gone and it’s now just Google Ads.
While Google search ads are important, the dramatic increase in keyword cost-per-click means you need to look for other methods to advertise your products in a cost-effective manner. Social media ads, video ads, remarketing, and other major platforms have proven to be effective.
The growth of digital means there are more options to choose from to develop a healthy and well balanced digital marketing strategy for your business.
Now Is the Time to Take Control of Your Digital Marketing
As we approach 2019, it’s clear that the longer a marketing team goes without addressing these changes they run the risk of falling further behind the digital marketing game. Sitting on the sidelines watching the game is no longer an option. Successful marketing teams must start now to identify holes in their marketing plans and start working on a plan today.