If 2015 was the year of mobile, 2016 is the year to optimise for mobile.
For several years customer behaviour trends have been leaning towards favouring convenient, engaging, and visual content—particularity while on the go. And 2016 is set to be the year in which brands and marketers truly capitalise on this by expanding and developing comprehensive mobile marketing strategies.
Content marketing has never been more important for e-commerce promotion. And so, it’s advantageous to keep an eye on emerging trends in order to get a leg up on your competition. Let’s dive into four of the key trends for e-commerce marketing in 2016.
Micro-moments are not those little moments of joy you spend with a loved one, but rather the minuscule pockets of time in which a consumer grabs their phone out of habit to browse online.
It’s estimated that Americans spend nearly 5 hours each day on their smart phones, with 41% checking their phones several times every hour. Flicking through social media, checking email, searching for a restaurant or comparing product reviews; each micro-moments is driven by one of many different user intentions. E-commerce marketers will largely do away with demographic-based targeting and move towards intent-based, shaping content and targeting customers by the various stages of the buying process—not their age group.
By the end of 2016, video content will account for nearly two-thirds of consumer internet traffic, according to some forecasts. The majority of video consumed will not be direct marketing but services like Netflix, Amazon Prime video, and Hulu, but this doesn’t deter from the fact that video is becoming the preferred medium for consuming content online.
Ever since we saw the Will It Blend? series aired on Youtube by Blendtec, marketers the world over have understood the power of video in strengthening and promoting a brand. 2016 is the year small and mid sized businesses ramp up their video marketing efforts and the big players take their productions to a whole new level.
The Come Back of Machine-Generated Content
Thankfully for me, article spinners aren’t going to put human writers out of work anytime soon. However, as one of the big struggles of online retailers continues to be generating unique content for product descriptions, machine-generated content could take its place in the arsenal of e-commerce marketing.
Companies such as Automated Insights use your product source date and a specific algorithm to put together individual product descriptions. This could offer a lifeline for small and mid-sized channels, but the jury is still out on whether or not the search engines will feel the same.
Beacon technology—which allows brands to track a customer’s location via their smartphone—surged in growth last year and is expected to go mainstream in 2016.
Brands can use location data to influence what type of notifications and promotions they send and when. A clothing retailer could send out coupons when customers near the proximity of their stores, or even while they are shopping in competing businesses.
Mobile technology and video content are here to stay. And as it’s still early days, 2016 presents some diverse opportunities for online retailers to target consumers in new and engaging ways—providing you’re not last to jump on the bandwagon!