7 Current Digital Marketing Trends For Small Businesses

The world has changed and so have we. What used to trend and become popular before isn’t working as well today. And so as we humans always do, we create new paths, new trends, and ways to attract the populace again.

digital marketing trends

This time, marketers have created ingenious new digital marketing strategies to attract customers and create more revenue than ever before. 2021 won’t know what hit it when faced with these top seven digital marketing strategies in small businesses.

These small businesses won’t be feeling so small anymore when they implement these new trendy marketing ideas.

#1 Optimize Your Search With Voice Search

Every piece of content written for the web is or should be optimized for SEO. All the best marketers know how to arrange their content in a way so their target audience finds them easily and quickly. It’s just the way of the digital marketing world.

But the problem is the way keywords are searched for is changing. The world is evolving and the act of typing out words is becoming a tad too time-consuming. Why type when you can just speak?

Voice search is quickly becoming the face of search engines and digital marketers have hurried to learn how to optimize their content for this research method. It’s been prophesied that 70% of research in 2021 will be done by voice search. Especially since new gadgets such as smartphones, tablets, and other such devices have voice assistants.

To make your content voice search-friendly, make sure to add voice search snippets to posts, FAQ, and a more conversational and casual tone to the content. It needs to be more approachable.

#2 Turn Your Content Into A Conversation

Turning your content into a more engaging conversation is best done by making it more interactive. Compel your target market to interact by creating videos, polls, podcasts, lives, webinars, and seminars. Use every digital weapon in your arsenal.

You can even include VR, AR, graphics, infographics quizzes, maps, and other types of visuals. Once you start using these interactive modes of content, you’ll find your conversation ratings doubling. And if your audience is interacting, this means there is brand interest, which means sales and profits also rise.

#3 Use The Google Snippet Optimization Tool

Google introduced featured snippets in 2014 but is becoming more widely used today due to its new and improved algorithm. For those who don’t know what this is, have you ever found a small box with the answer to your question when you search on Google? That is a Feature snippet. Cool right?

Now, this snippet only comes about if your on-page SEO strategy is rock solid and checks every box. Make sure every inch of your content on your blog posts and website is SEO friendly.

You’ll find that once your content has a featured snippet, google traffic will automatically be guided towards you. If by any chance your content is not SEO then the work you put into it to make it that way will certainly be worth the effort.

#4 Video Marketing Is All The Rage Now

Video marketing has taken the digital world by storm. All small businesses have taken to it like ducks to water and if you haven’t, then you need to get on the bandwagon right away.

Researchers have found that over 60% of customers (for any type of brand) love to watch videos of the product they are buying before making any commitments. It gives them a better sense of the product and also a certain sense of security over not being scammed.

If you aren’t making videos to enhance the digital presence of your product, research states that you are dropping sales and conversation by over 80%. Make use of YouTube, your website, LinkedIn, Facebook, and Instagram but also take a step ahead.

Create some live interaction. Do some podcasts, webinars, zoom sessions, and conferences that provide in-group and out-group experiences for the customers. Make sure to record the whole thing so that you can post it later for all those who missed out, which increases conversation statistics even more.

Another video marketing idea is to host live streams or live Q/A sessions where you could dedicate an hour or two to your customers, show off your product, and answer any questions your customers might have.

#5 Best Way To Personalize Is With AI

If you haven’t noticed already, businesses have started taking advantage of AI. This is one trend you do not want to let pass by. Every audience in the world wants a personalized experience in every facet of life.

If the ads showing on their screen aren’t relevant, the reader will block them ASAP. AI helps your product reach its perfect customer.
The AI simply studies your target customer and then, analyzes the audience, making sure that your product and marketing strategies reach the right people.

An advantage of AI is that your customer will always see optimized and personalized content, and you will always be able to keep an eye on where your buyer is in their journey towards your products.

With the help of AI, you can be sure that the content you have created gets optimal engagement. Always be sure that the AI you are using is set up correctly. Be sure to input the correct data sets or else you will need to overhaul everything and start anew.

#6 Chatbots Make Life Easy

Customers today want immediate assistance. Research has stated that over 83% of customers want their queries to be answered the minute they ask. Otherwise, they lose interest and walk away from a product that may have been very good for them. This is where chatbots come in.

Although this particular digital tool has been around for quite some time, it has recently become more popular and trendy.

Some might say that being available 24/7 and handling every question at every hour of the day can be a bit difficult. There might not be enough manpower in the company to have someone ready to answer the questions all the time.

A chatbot can be programmed to answer common questions. They can also be set to hold live conversations, ask questions, respond with detailed answers, and could even solve complicated issues.

If the issue turns out to be too complicated for them, the chatbot algorithm can automatically be set to pass the conversation on to a live available agent.

The chatbot has a constant learning algorithm so the conversation data can be used to further improve the data handling of the chatbot. So we repeat, this is one trend that you and your business would want to get behind as we head into the unknowns of 2021.

#7 Micro Influences Hold A Lot Of Sway Too

When we talk about Influencers, we usually think about the major Influencers of Instagram. But sadly, these influencers don’t always provide good revenue for every business.
In addition, it can also be quite difficult to work with the mega influencers, especially if you are a small business.

This dilemma led smaller businesses to using Micro-influencers. These are influencers who aren’t as famous but who are able to bring a personalized and more approachable touch to the product.

A micro-influencer usually has between 1000 to 100,000 followers. When you begin searching for one, always make sure that the influencer works within the niche you want. Otherwise, find someone else.

Even big brands like Coca-Cola have worked with Micro-influencers. This digital marketing trend allows businesses to improve their engagement as well as increase their brand awareness, while providing a better customer experience, which results in a higher ROI and provides a certain authenticity.

Marketing Is Ever-Evolving

Marketing like all other fields is ever-evolving. After all, life moves and change is the only constant. This is why it is so important to keep up with change, otherwise you will be left behind.

When creating a digital marketing strategy for your business or brand in 2021, keep these trends in mind. Use them and you’ll find they will help your business in a way that it never has before. It will elevate your SEO, leads, sales, profit, and customer base.

Scott Hall writes about digital content marketing and business software for entrepreneurs and small businesses on ScottHall.co. As a content marketer and search engine expert, his book on social media ‘The Blog Ahead' was published in 2006.

The Ultimate Guide for Voice Search Optimization

Modern internet users need accurate results and they need them fast. This is probably why modern customers use their mobile and voice searches to look for products online.

Businesses are quickly altering their marketing strategies to stay in sync with their customers – are you?

voice search

Here’s what you need to know about the changing trends in the world of digital marketing.

What is Voice Search?

Voice search is a voice-initiated command that enables users to search the internet or manage an app through voice commands.

Modern devices are voice-activated. This means that you can search for information on the internet or execute various functions on your electronic devices by issuing voice commands.

There are a number of voice-activated devices out there, including smartphones, tablets, and laptops. Moreover, smart speakers by Google, Apple, Amazon, and Microsoft have made voice search more advanced, quicker, and highly functional.

Due to its high efficiency and ease of use, more than 50% of all online searches are voice searches. People now prefer screenless inquiries, and voice search is a great way to make that happen.

With your customer base highly reliant on voice search, it is also becoming vital for businesses.

The Advent of Voice Search

Voice technology has revolutionized the tech industry as well as our homes. The modern man is now a resident of a “Smart Home,” where he commands his virtual assistants to execute even the smallest of tasks.

All of the leading tech giants-Google, Apple, Amazon, and Microsoft- have launched their version of virtual assistants or smart speakers.

Siri, for instance, is a virtual assistant by Apple and operates on all Apple devices. Siri helps the user by performing many tasks through voice commands like answering queries, finding information asked by the user online, and various other functions like starting a call, making reminders, setting up alarms, etc.

Similarly, Google Voice Search enables the user to scour the internet for information by voice commands. Another Google virtual assistant is Google Home. Google Home can execute a number of tasks around the house and is compatible with many devices, including smartwatches, smartphones, and the television.

How Does Voice Search Work?

Voice commands are a faster and more efficient substitute for textual searches. Not only does a voice-enabled search save you plenty of time, but it is also quite convenient.

Voice search also allows users to put in precise queries and get accurate results in turn. While in text-based searches, you get a number of generalized results from which you pick out the most relevant result.

Voice-enabled searches can be about anything and everything: You could inquire about Gold’s price or stock prices for the day or a hairdresser in your vicinity or the best vegan pizzas in town!

Leveraging the Power of Voice Search for Your Small Business

With more than half of internet users switching to voice search, most small business technology solutions will be to tap into the customer base who would rather use voice search than type.

It is highly likely that all of your competitors have devised a strategy around this. If you haven’t yet taken these users into account, there is a high probability that your potential customers are landing on your competitor’s pages.

In order to make sure that the customers who use voice search to look for your brand actually land on your page, you must include a digital voice search strategy in your marketing strategy. This way, none of your customers will end up buying from your competitors, and you will be able to enhance customers’ experience all in one go.

Moving from Website Optimization to Voice Optimization

Now that we have established that the modern customer is more inclined towards voice searches rather than text-based search, small business owners must start focusing on Voice Optimization along with Website Optimization.

Voice search for small businesses is equally important as it is for large-scale companies. Small businesses with limited resources can find multiple avenues to introduce voice optimization to their marketing strategy while being cost-effective. This is the only way to ensure that you stand out from your competitors and don’t drown in the sea of irrelevance.

Voice Optimization in Your Marketing Strategy

Voice search allows users to get a single precise result for their query. So, your voice optimization strategy must effectively place you on top of the search results so that your customers can access your website. Unlike the text-based searches where businesses would be easily noticeable even on the fourth and fifth spot, voice-enabled searches don’t take the third or fourth result into account.

So, you need higher visibility. Here is how you can ensure that your business stands at the voice search query’s top result.

Make Content That Is Voice-search Friendly

Voice search optimization of your website means that you will increase the relevance of your content. To reach out to your customers who use voice searches, you need to pop up as the most relevant result. And for that, you need to up your game of keywords.

Optimized for Voice Using Long-Tail Keywords

Voice Search users tend to use voice queries that are natural and casual. Generally, their questions are elaborate and quite wordy.

When working on your search engine keyword strategy, your primary focus should be finding the most relevant long-tail keywords used by your targeted customers. These keywords could be 4-5 words long or could be a phrase.

When you’re done identifying those keywords, your focus should be on how well you can incorporate these words in your website’s content so that they can thoroughly blend in with the content.

The tone should be as if you’re having a conversation with the searcher.

One thing that needs to be kept in mind is that you ought to give the user what they want, so if you don’t blend in words properly and if you mention the keywords excessively and out of place in your content, the consequence will be a bad user experience. And that will be bad news for you.

A very convenient way of getting content ideas or discovering what your target audience is looking for is to use the ‘Ask the Public’ option.

You need to remember a few things about your audience.

  • First of all, think of your audience as the busiest people that could walk the earth.
  • They need the most relevant, complete and easy to comprehend information within no time.
  • Believe it or not, they’ll first go through the whole content without reading the complete sentences and judge by that quick view whether they should give it a proper read or not.

So, that quick view should be enough to make them stay.

Be straight-forward and Concise:

Here are a few points for your guidance:

  • Your content should be worth their time. Make it clear, very relevant, and understandable—no need to begin with lengthy opening statements.
  • An effective FAQ section.
    • Your FAQ section should reflect your audience’s needs.
    • It should cover a broad range of intent.
    • Should be updated frequently.
    • Do not overdo it.

If your goal is to make the user happy, your work will ultimately be identified as the most appropriate and chosen for the top spot.

Enhance Your Visibility For Local Searches

Voice search for small businesses provides an excellent opportunity to tap into the local customer base. This is due to the fact that most of the voice search queries inquire for products in the vicinity of the user. So, you must optimize our local searches.

All you will have to do is go to ‘Google My Business’ and register your business to optimize your local searches. It is also wise to register your business in local business directories and local search engines to maximize your reach.

Create a User-Friendly Website

Most internet users access the internet and different websites through their smartphones. Whether they initiate voice-enabled searches or text-based searches, they will most likely access your website via their smartphones.

That means that websites not mobile optimized will not make many business transactions. Your business website must be mobile-friendly to ensure a seamless experience for your customers.

The main goal of voice search for small businesses is to provide swift information to customers. And so, creating a mobile-friendly website is an essential part of the Voice Optimization strategy.

You can quickly check how your website is doing in terms of mobile friendlies by testing it out via Google’s Mobile Friendly Test.

Speakable Structured Data

Speakable Structured data refers to your website’s parts that are best-suited as results for Google voice searches. When your data complies with the Schema Markup, it increases your website’s potential for reaching out to your customers because it is then deemed a highly relevant result for Voice searches.

Concluding Thoughts

There is no denying that voice search is becoming an increasingly popular mode of browsing among internet users. Therefore, it is vital for businesses, especially small businesses to inculcate voice search optimization into their digital marketing strategy. Every company has a unique marketing plan and a unique customer base, and so each business needs to devise its marketing strategy with great care and high personalization.

You can always reach out to a professional digital marketing agency for an effective digital marketing strategy because effective marketing can secure you the number one spot. And for voice searches, that is every business’ number one goal.

Scott Hall writes about digital content marketing and business software for entrepreneurs and small business on ScottHall.co. As a content marketer and search engine expert, his book on social media ‘The Blog Ahead' was published in 2006.