In 2016 we see a continued growth from what started out in 2015 with a true emphasis on the customer experience. Whether this is the interface of your website or the personalization to provide content rich information for consumers. We do see some shifts in the way the Internet works with the improvements in computer algorithms (had to say we are programmers after all). These are due to the major players (Google, Microsoft, Apple, Twitter, and Facebook) taking on more personas to make the Internet a more personable experience for users.
This is first on our list as it should be at the forefront of your mind. Whether you have an eCommerce site or a standard business site embracing security is crucial to not only your company brand but to the protection of your customers. Google even rewards businesses by moving your rankings up when you incorporate full site SSL. It’s never good to be hacked and even harder to recover from it. Everyone remembers the Target problem from 2014 to this day. That has cost them millions and we know of no small-to-mid-size business that could afford to be hit with a security breach.
Content that used to be "keyword rich" will be changing to more readable (by humans) and that the content that provides more value to your customer will help you achieve better results in the search engines. Part of this content credibility will be the authorship of the company writing it. Companies that copy and share other content is great for the internet but will not build the unique content or authority needed to achieve the best results on the search engines.
In 2015 Google moved YouTube to a subscription based model so that users could avoid ads. This shift shows the true importance of what video can offer to businesses. We produced a video to gauge the results. We see with this further embracement of video to be a larger part of our core business in the coming year.
Social media shows no slowing down. In fact, it continues to gain steam and become more personalized for users. Those businesses that interact and engage their customers will see a lot of growth in the coming year. eCommerce will be blending into Facebook. In 2015 we have seen over half of our eCommerce sites being directly integrated into Facebook.
More businesses are adding mobile applications that mimic the functionality of their websites. This can give your loyal customers your information from a click of a single icon on their mobile device. By having a mobile application people are able to get needed information quickly and helps them avoid going to your competitors who may not have a mobile application. Last year we saw three companies that embraced mobile and are continually asked to provide mobile applications for our clients.
We saw mobile grow double-digits for every single one of our clients in 2015. We can only see it becoming even more important as users embrace their Smart Phones more each day. Sites that use a true responsive web design (RWD) will show higher on the search engines than sites that are completely different. With a mobile site you can have a site that resizes based on the device or do some fancy programming and provide a different site for each size screen. Google has stated clearly that RWD is the way they recommend a website to be designed and this trend is continuing to be embraced by Google and the other major search engines.
2015 will definitely be an interesting an exciting year for all of us that deal in the online world. Search engines are very specialized and continue to weed out bad sites and sites that do black hat techniques to get ranked higher. The quality of your content, how often you update that content, and the reputation you build for your brand will become increasingly more important each day. The search engines are tuning each day for mobile sites, sites with security, and further reaching into the geographic location of a business website to tailor results for users. Much of the information that is key to the search engines in establishing the best information is being active on your site and the structured meta data that is behind the site.
We only covered seven topics that we see as having a major impact in the coming year. We didn’t cover areas like digital marketing (newsletters, text marketing loyalty programs, search engine optimization [SEO], online advertising) or eCommerce which are a core part of our business. If you were to take anything away from what we have above, it is you need to be actively involved in your website and your online presence. If you are unable to then have people who are committed to it to see your business succeed. Your customers are out there and have questions. Make certain you answer them for them.
If you need a company that invests in your business JM2 Webdesigners from Valparaiso Indiana is here to serve you. You can reach us at 855-456-2669, email us at firstname.lastname@example.org, or visit our online contact form here.
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