It’s safe to say that 2020 has been a year like no other. The COVID-19 pandemic has changed the way we do business, with huge upsurges in the number of people buying online and many of us working from home for much of the year.
The pandemic has also had a huge impact on the digital space. With more and more brands competing online, it’s never been more important to stand out to reach your ideal audience.
So, with the new year nearly upon us (yay), what are the digital marketing trends to look out for if you want to really ramp up your online sales over the next 12 months?
1. Virtual events and experiences
This year, we’ve all become accustomed to interacting digitally and attending more and more virtual online meetings. While we all look forward to life returning to some kind of normality, it’s likely that these trends will continue for a while – and some will become permanent.
The good news is there are plenty of opportunities to create online experiences that will engage with your customers and bring your brand into their living rooms. For example, could you host an online workshop to teach your customers a new skill? Perhaps you could consider inviting some of your loyal clients to an exclusive online launch of your next product?
Embrace this trend and you can provide real value to your customers while setting yourself up for a year of success.
2. Visual search
They say a picture is worth a thousand words. With the rising popularity of services like Google Lens, that definitely seems to be true!
What is visual search?
It involves using images and video, rather than text, to find what you’re looking for. Maybe a cool outfit caught your eye? With visual search, you can snap it and find similar items – without having to type anything into a search box.
Visual search is something that’s likely to only increase in popularity over the coming years. To capitalise on this, be sure to cover the essentials:
- Use high quality images/videos optimised for the web
- Include alt text for each image
- Add keywords to the file name
3. Interactive content
Adding interactive elements like quizzes, calculator widgets and polls to your digital marketing channels is a fantastic way to increase engagement and provide value to your visitors.
You can also use such content to increase reach – for example, by launching a contest and encourage participants to share it with their friends on social media.
What’s more, interactive content can help you learn more about your customers based on what they input into the tool. If you’re smart, you can then use this information to refine your offerings and create new digital campaigns. It also brings a great opportunity to introduce personalisation into your marketing.
4. Diversity and inclusivity
One look at the headlines tells you everything you need to know about the importance of inclusivity, diversity and equality.
What’s more, consumers are increasingly favouring brands that share the same values as them. According to Accenture, 42% of shoppers would pay a premium to shop with a retailer committed to inclusivity and diversity.
What does this mean for your digital marketing?
In short, it is super important to communicate your values to your customers. This means using the right language and images in your marketing, encouraging conversations through social media, and promoting these authentic values in your content.
5. Sales through social media
As social media plays an ever more prominent role in our lives, it’s also changing the way we shop. Increasingly, consumers are wanting to shop without having to leave their social app.
Thanks to tools like Instagram Shopping and Facebook Shops, customers can easily shop for your products at the moment of discovery.
Such platforms work ideally alongside your existing sales channels. Your catalogue can be integrated with your eCommerce website, seamlessly syncing products between them.
6. Artificial intelligence
As AI continues to advance at a rapid pace, it’s no surprise to see it playing an increasingly important role in digital marketing trends.
AI is tremendously exciting for marketers because it allows businesses to predict customer behaviours and create a more personalised user experience. With the help of AI learning, brands can make tangible improvements to their digital marketing strategies, boosting conversions and increasing sales.
Look out for AI becoming ever more advanced and commonplace during 2021 and beyond. It’s likely to have a huge impact on business in the future.
Need some help with your digital marketing strategy? Want to make sure 2021 is the best year EVER for your business keeping up with digital marketing trends?
Keep an eye on our website for more great tips and insights throughout the year. For personalised advice on how you can use digital marketing to your advantage, get in touch with our expert team today.