With January now well underway, Google has unveiled its 2019 digital marketing predictions. The 10-strong list includes everything from video to Chatbots as well as a few surprising industry predictions that have the potential to disrupt your digital marketing plans or see you switching gears in ways you may not have imagined 12 months ago.
Omni-channel marketing will prevail
Modern marketers are well used to grappling with multiple channels, such as the brand website, social media profiles and apps but, in 2019, this multi-channel mindset is expected to switch to a full omni-channel approach. Google says the key here will be to create a “unified communication system” with all marketing channels working concurrently and in harmony. In practise, this means that however many channels your customer visits along their journey, the experience should be seamless. If they start on a desktop in the office, switch to a mobile site on the commute and then browse the app at home, the end goal is that the consumer should be picked up and presented with a totally unified experience at every stage.
Mobile experiences will be upgraded even further
With all of the emphasis placed on the mobile web and mobile page load speeds as a ranking factor, you may have thought that your mobile presence was already a finely tuned machine. Not so says Google – as we saw from 2018’s record breaking Cyber Monday, consumers are increasingly purchasing from mobile devices so mobile landing page speed can heavily influence conversions. Further improving speed will be a key challenge but you should also expect your own and rival brands to be dedicated to developing even better, more immersive, native mobile experiences with tech such as AMP and Progressive Web Apps.
We’ll say bye-bye TV, hello online
This is the year that online viewing will surpass traditional TV watching according to Google, with the average user expected to spend more time online than in front of their big screen for the first time ever in 2019. As a consequence of this, budgets will most likely be shifted away from TV ad spend to finance online video production. This of course can take many forms, from shorts and vlogs to news style pieces and interviews. Online video advertising is also expected to grow as a result, with a forecasted 17% annual growth.
Voice search will continue to grow
Despite a recent study which suggested voice search use had actually dipped last year, Google expects this trend to boom in 2019, with smart speaker sales forecasted to grow by 50% and more marketing tools integrated with voice services across most channels and industries.
eCommerce retailers will partner up to ensure growth
Because platforms like eBay, Amazon and Alibaba are so dominant and can afford to make huge investments in technology, Google expects to see more retailers turning to partnerships in order to not get left behind. It says this will provide access to talent, investment and technology that otherwise wouldn’t be possible.