ironman,robots & penguins
At the start of a new year, we’re always impatiently wondering what lies ahead, so we’re taking a peak at what’s in store for digital in 2016.
From Google’s Alphabet announcement to Mobilegeddon, 2015 was a big year for digital. As always, Google has set the tone for what we can expect in 2016 in terms of digital marketing. It’s fair to say that the majority of us that work in the digital realm are always working towards Google’s standard and following the rules that they set. This is because Google, like all of us, just want to provide the best experience for web users. With this in mind, we’ve dug out the UpriseVSI crystal ball and tarot cards to take a glimpse into the future and see what’s in store for digital in 2016. Here are our digital predictions:
Rise of the robots
Sadly, 2016 probably won’t be the year that we see an abundance of real-life Ironman-esque robotics, although Mark Zuckerberg is reportedly keen on making this a reality. Let’s face it, the chances of us having our own robots to run our houses in 2016 are slim as we’re not all blessed with Zuckerberg’s riches. Us mere mortals needn’t miss out entirely though, as we still have our trusty digital assistants like Siri and Cortana, which brings us to our first prediction…
Our increasing reliance on digital assistants will cause SEO as we know it to change in 2016. Digital assistants utilise traditional search engines to find the information needed to answer queries quickly. This means that it’ll be important to ensure that website content is now optimised with digital assistants in mind. Information should be easily accessible to these assistants rather than the cryptic descriptions that some businesses use in order to force people to click through to their website to find out more.
The penguin update
Not a prediction as such, but we couldn’t discuss 2016 without at least mentioning Google’s Penguin update. There hasn’t been a Penguin update since December 2014, and we’re hoping that this new update will be set to a real-time version so that any penalised websites can see a more immediate recovery. As always, Google is staying tight lipped about what we can expect but we’re keeping our fingers crossed that the update will cause people to abandon black-hat SEO tactics once and for all.
Twitter has been changing its game plan for a while now. 2015 saw the introduction of Twitter ‘moments’ along with the surprising choice to change ‘favourites’ to ‘likes’. It’s clear that Twitter is trying to bring itself more in line with various other social media platforms to encourage a more mainstream user base.
However, the news that Twitter is considering abolishing the 140-character limitation has seen a divide in opinion within the digital world. At the moment, Twitter hasn’t officially commented on this but Twitter CEO Jack Dorsey has posted a message on Twitter hinting that the changes are coming. If it goes ahead, this will undeniably be a game-changer for social media. Personally, we like the 140-character limit; it’s part of Twitter’s personality and has been a key feature since the very beginning. The limit ensures that tweets are short and concise, which is in-keeping with Twitter’s desire to provide users with fast, public and live updates. All we can do is wait and see if Twitter throw any more curveballs this year; we’re predicting that the social media platform has got some more tricks up its sleeve though.
SEO will always be an important element of any digital strategy and, as such, businesses often invest in experts to handle this complex and intricate process. However, some businesses are reluctant to hire social media experts, as it’s a common misconception that existing staff can easily manage social media. It’s only sending out the occasional update, right? Wrong.
Social media and SEO are now more closely linked than ever, particularly with Google now indexing tweets. The way people are searching for information is shifting, and whilst people are still using search engines to find information, it’s becoming more and more common for them to use social media to conduct their research instead. The same goes for sharing content; it always comes back to social media. If nothing else, make sure that 2016 is the year that you reconsider your social strategy.
2015 will probably be remembered as the year of the mobile. Not only did we see Google’s mobile algorithm update, better known as Mobilegeddon, but it was also the year Google announced that mobile traffic had finally surpassed desktop traffic in 10 different countries. We think the rise of mobile traffic will continue this year, which will make a responsive website more important than ever.
Customer-centric web design will continue to be a prime focus in web design. It’s no longer enough to have a website which merely looks good, it has to be smart. User experience (UX) is something that needs to be carefully considered when designing a website. A state-of-the-art website with an abstract design and functionality might look great and show that you’ve invested in a modern design, but it simply won’t preform well if you have an elderly customer base. You need to take your goals, customers and market into consideration before you start thinking about design. A web design agency will you help you to do this.
Whatever happens in the digital world this year, give us a call to find out how we can help you.