What will 2016 hold when it comes to web design and Internet marketing?
It’s always tough to know exactly what’s next on the horizon in – especially when it comes to the Internet – but here are seven things in marketing and web design we can safely predict you’ll see more of in the coming 12 months:
#1: Clean Design and UX
As the web gets more and more “crowded” with new websites, customers are putting a premium on the ability to find the information they’re looking for quickly. While it was once fashionable to show off all that you could do on the web, today’s searchers want pages that look great but are easy to use and navigate.
#2: More Focused SEO
More websites means more choice. As a result, both Google and its users (that is, human searchers) are getting pickier about search results. SEO needs to be more focused on attracting a certain type of buyer and giving them exactly what they looking for. Otherwise, your website can be lost in the crowd.
#3: Bigger Penalties for Websites Without Mobile Functionality
An executive for Google recently wondered aloud whether there was any use for non-mobile websites anymore. With nearly two-thirds of all web traffic expected to originate from smart phones and tablets in the next couple of years, it’s a fair question. Either way, know that a lack of mobile functionality already makes your website look outdated. Things will only get worse in 2016.
#4: Social Engagement over Social Advertising
In some ways, social advertising is the hot item that businesses want to try right now. And, lots of companies are getting good results. But, it seems as if social engagement – forming relationships with fans and followers – is more sustainable and economical than simple PPC models our on social networking. Expect more companies to find that out and start experimenting.
#5: Tighter Email Subscriber Lists
Email is no longer new or exciting, but it is still profitable and reliable. However, once you lose an email subscriber, it’s incredibly difficult to get them back. Put those two dynamics together, and you have the rationale for very tightly-focused email marketing campaigns. Look for companies to find new ways to target buyers at the micro level to retain subscribers and deliver offers that catch attention.
#6: New Domain Extensions
As we’ve written recently, .com and .net have a little more company than they used to. As more and more industry-specific domain extensions pop up, we expect they’ll become common and accepted by customers. And the switch might happen faster than most people expect.
#7: More Attention to Online ROI
It’s not enough to “do” Internet marketing anymore. Businesses of all sizes are getting smarter, and paying closer attention to the return on investment they get from both their websites as a whole and specific campaigns. This will ultimately be a great thing for businesses as they waste less money. Will your website and Internet marketing campaigns be competitive next year, or will you lose ground to competitors?