Go SEO: 5 Digital Marketing Trends for 2022

By Kelsey Tweedly, Marketing Manager, ICMA

Business has been challenging for the last two years. Revenues may have dipped, while marketing budgets were cut. But 2022 looks like the beginning of a rally.

Reinvesting in your company’s digital marketing strategy is one of the quickest ways to make up for any lost traction. Being found is the first step in the sales cycle. The majority of online experiences (68%) begin with a search engine, so that’s where you should focus. From a sales perspective, SEO leads have a 14.6% close rate.

Here are five digital marketing trends in 2022 that will help your company improve its search rankings:

1. MULTI-CHANNEL MARKETING

In today’s digital world, your marketing plan must include multiple channels to reach more of your targeted audience—faster.

For example, the average consumer owns 3.64 connected devices and more than 50% of all internet usage happens on mobile. In addition, multi-channel marketing campaigns experience a 24% greater return, compared to single-channel campaigns.

Develop a media campaign to drive prospects down the sales funnel and increase marketing qualified leads. Distribute content on various channels, including your business’ website, social media channels, third-party news sites with PR, emails and webcasts.

2. MOBILE-FIRST MARKETING

If you want to extend the value of your website, convert it into a mobile app.

A mobile app provides enhanced customer engagement and superior analytics. It helps you track in-app user activity and offers filtered recommendations based on that behavior. An app also can require personal sign-ins by users, which can have a great impact on generating leads. With integrated sign-in features, you can even generate user data across the web. This will help you create targeted ads customized to specific preferences or locations. Using an A/B testing tool, you can experiment with different strategies to optimize the customer experience.

A mobile app also gives customers a better experience, allowing them to access while offline.

While a website cannot be accessed offline, some features of an app can still be available for offline use. Offline functionalities drain very little battery from the device, while still allowing users to get basic information.

3. GOOGLE SHOPPING

The pandemic has motivated Google to pump up its retail game. According to a recent study, more consumers have shifted their buying patterns online in the last 12 months. For instance, 34% of shoppers bought a product online via PC and 38% bought a product online via tablet last year, while 44% bought a product online via mobile phone or smartphone.

To make things more interesting, Google has enhanced its relationship with Shopify, and it has updated its AI shopping model with new search guidelines.

That’s right. Google is headed straight for Amazon’s market share.

And that’s great news for your SEO program in 2022.

Google’s Shopping Graph integrates product information and reviews in real time so users can shop for products that are available while they search. This model works across many Google properties, including YouTube, Google Images, Google Search and, of course, Google Shopping.

So, make sure you provide Google with product data, which will dramatically help your products be seen by your customers.

4. ARTIFICIAL INTELLIGENCE

Google’s AI algorithm RankBrain will be one of the most important ranking factors for Google search engine results pages in 2022. Although the company hasn’t revealed the inner workings of its algorithm, it is likely to come down to user experience. In other words, your SEO strategy will most likely turn into a content strategy to generate the best results in 2022. The amount of time spent on a website, as well as click-throughs, will probably be assessed by RankBrain to determine which content should be prioritized in search results.

Do you know which content formats work best for building your brand’s story along with better search results? Start with case studies, which answer two of the three questions you will need to address before you close a client. Case studies answer the first question, “Have you ever worked with a customer like me before?” and the second one, “What makes your company special?” Keep them succinct so the user can quickly understand your value.

(Oh yeah, about the third question to close a client—it’s actually a sales question: “How much?” From a marketer’s perspective, if they ask that question, it means you’ve done your job. Now, let the sales team take over.)

Here’s another tip: longer content gets more shares. So, instead of writing three 1,000-word blogs, plan ahead and write about the same topic so you can combine them. And to keep the users on your page for a longer period of time, use H2 and H3 subheads throughout the story, which will make it easier for the web crawlers to scan and less intimidating for the humans who appreciate your meaningful content.

5. VOICE SEARCH

Regarding voice search, your customers are spending less time talking on their phones and spending more time talking to their phones. Web browsing is still No. 1 on mobile devices, but voice searching is now in second place. In fact, it’s projected that 70% of consumers will forego shopping at physical stores because they will shop via voice in 2022. Voice shopping is expected to reach $40 billion by next year.

The growing voice-search trend will make keyword planning even more valuable for your organization in 2022. Strong keywords on your website will create a better user experience that will heighten your on-page scores from an SEO perspective. The result? Higher placements in search results and more web traffic.

In 2022, the time is right to revisit your marketing plan and capitalize on the digital marketing trends.

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