With the end of 2017 rapidly approaching, now is the time to look back and reflect on all of the changes in digital marketing trends this past year and what we should look forward to seeing in the year to come.
If you’re reading this, you’re likely familiar with digital optimization or at least curious about what it is and how we use optimization, testing, and personalization to create great experiences for website visitors and drive more revenue for your company. Website optimization is one of the most critical aspects of a company’s digital marketing strategy.
According to this Venture Beat survey, out of 36 companies engaged in conversion rate optimization, only 2 were unable to demonstrate a significant ROI, and out of 2,938 marketers who participated in the survey only 5% weren’t able to achieve ROI with conversion optimization. One particularly alluring metric found in the report states that 173 of these marketers claim to have generated ROI of over 1,000%!
Based on this report and countless other studies, it’s clear that Optimization is becoming less of a luxury spend for companies and more of a necessary component of any marketing strategy. Here are some of the biggest trends in digital optimization we saw in 2017 and which trends we think companies should add to their marketing strategies/budgets in 2018.
The biggest obstacle for websites with low visits has always been their inability to run A/B tests, let alone multivariate tests. Until now.
Machine learning tools have quickly been gaining attention to help low-traffic sites, as well as other websites that are interested in simply removing the chance of human error from their tests, boost engagement. One of the biggest players in the game right now is a tool called Ascend from Sentient. Ascend, and other tools like it, uses artificial intelligence and evolutionary algorithms to anticipate and automate the process. This type of technology is still in its early stages, but the need for machine learning in the form of testing tools is quickly gaining traction and continued growth in this area is expected in 2018.
Accelerated Mobile Pages (AMP)
Google’s 2016 SEO strategy has created a need for more responsive pages in order to try and reduce bounce rates. This brought on Accelerated Mobile Pages (AMP), one of the most useful solutions developed by Google and Twitter to create ultra-responsive lightweight pages for mobile browsers. AMP has become a phenomenon in the SEO community since it allows consumers load pages instantly at a reduced data rate. The average webpage uses eight times more data than an AMP when loading content.
Though some skeptics have had their doubts as to whether AMP was just a fad or would be utilized and further developed, it’s clear that based on the benefits we will be seeing more and more APM urls in 2018.
Test On As Many Devices As You Need To
We spend the majority of our day in Wi-Fi zones, and with devices like wearable technology, smart phones, smart TVs, even smart refrigerators it’s no wonder why we spend more than 10 hours a day on screen time. Our coffee makers, home security systems, cars, stop lights, and hundreds of other devices connect with one another, the most important one spends 50% of the day in your pocket and the other 50% in your hand. Each of these devices can be seen as an “access point” in a customer’s life. New opportunities are being created for marketers requiring constant A/B testing. Conversion testing will become more complex, with the integration of new tools, and analysis of new types of data. As more devices and more access points become available, you’ll be forced to experiment across multiple platforms. Over time, testing complexity will increase exponentially as you include more and more technologies to your marketing efforts.
Personalize Your Message
Personalization is considered a critical part of a quality remarketing strategy. The personalization of a website visitor’s experience has been proven to help increase conversions and generate sales by approximately 20%, and personalized calls to action increase conversion rates an incredible 42% according to research done by Hubspot.
The most important thing to keep in mind when considering personalization on your site is to create a message that speaks directly to the visitor in a clear concise way. It’s about serving content that’s specific to them. Personalization creates a connection between you and the customer so they develop a preference for and loyalty to your company, rather than searching the limitless other options available to them.
Personalization, like all things, has a limit. So before you get carried away, consider that too much personalization can be creepy and invasive. Your customers might be happy with an email addressed by name, but ultra-targeted ads might make them feel uncomfortable. It’s important here to know your user as much as possible to anticipate their preferences. Or, they might not respond to personalization at all. You’ll have to be creative, but personal emails, product or service recommendations, and location specific items are all tactics known to yield great results.
If optimization is something you've been interested in pursuing, but haven't had the time or personal knowledge to implement on your own feel free to reach out to Multiplica.us' Optimization experts at Optimization@multiplica.us. We work for clients globally, but are conviniently located in Boca Raton, South Florida.