The Most Important Digital Marketing News of 2016

February, 01, 2017

Did 2016 speed by so quickly that you found yourself unable to keep up with the digital marketing world? You’re not alone. The year was fast-paced, and plenty was changing on the digital marketing scene.

To get you up to speed, we’ve highlighted some important news items from the past 12 months. That way, you’ll start 2017 in the know.

Big Data Took Over

Have you ever heard the term “Big Data” as much as you did in 2016? We hadn’t, either.

Big Data finally came into its own, and companies of all sizes are using it to drill down. They’re segmenting markets in ways that were impossible before, and they’re reaping the benefits.

If you’re stuck using only the most basic data to develop and track marketing campaigns, it’s time to give Big Data a try. Hook up with a website development and marketing agency that understands how to implement Big Data analysis for truly remarkable results, and hold onto your hat. You’ll be amazed at what a little deep-diving can do.

Mobile Was Huge

Statistics aside, mobile is huge. It’s practically impossible to go anywhere without seeing someone on a smart phone or tablet.

With the increased mobile usage came demand for better mobile websites. Google responded by noting that one of its ranking factors for sites would include site responsiveness. This got major press and attention, and businesses everywhere made sure they looked good on screens the size of a deck of cards.

Are you still hemming and hawing about the idea of going responsive or creating a mobile website? Whichever option you choose, all signs say “go for it,” because mobile is just getting hotter.

Apps, Anyone?

If you felt like apps were everywhere before, 2016 must have made you think again.

Apps are getting simpler to design and promote, and savvy companies are using them to enable customers and prospects to quickly connect. Some larger corporations, such as Amazon, have more than one app depending on what you need.

At this point, you can pay bills, watch TV, and even feed your dog treats using app software. It’s an incredible change in the way we connect.

The Rise of Content

For a long time, content felt more like a duke than a king. In 2016, it returned to the throne.

Google decided to place more emphasis on readable, reliable, and downright good content. Today, sites that followed up by revamping their content were rewarded with better search engine rank placements. Sites that disregarded the message have found themselves losing ground, to their dismay.

Another content-related change was the realization that people actually enjoy reading long articles. This prompted the long-form article of 1,500, 2,000, or more than 3,000 words. Long-form articles aren’t applicable in every situation, but when carefully placed, they can add substance to a corporate site.

Where does this fit in for your site? How about some long-form content on the blog you’ve been forgetting to update? It’s a nice way to showcase your expertise and add some much-needed fresh, relevant text to your website pages.

Social’s Still Here

Not that you thought it was going away, but it’s worth mentioning that social didn’t go anywhere but up in 2016. It’s still around, in all its glory.

While Snapchat enjoyed a burst of action, Facebook and Twitter are still the behemoths. And YouTube is a social search engine giant that doesn’t seem to want to give up its reign.

If your business isn’t on social media or if you have a page and aren’t sure what to do with it, make a promise to do something this year. You don’t want to end 2017 on a sour social note.

As for the coming seasons, we’re sure more digital marketing topics will come to the forefront. No doubt they’ll be highlighted when we do another retrospective piece on the way the digital world changed in a mere 365 days.

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