Industry Insights & SEO Trends – Blue Moon Digital, Inc.

By | October 8, 2019

I’m Lauren Klostermann I’m our SVP of Client Services here at Blue Moon Digital. For this season’s holiday trends
what we’re gonna be focusing on are still some of the trends that we were
seeing last year around mobile making sure that mobile is a key focus for you.
Video how are you utilizing that and maximizing that for your strategy. Amazon
and marketplaces if you can’t beat them join them. Or, how are you using that as
part of your strategy. Cross channel audience strategy and personalization.
Making sure that’s incorporated to your strategy. And then what are the revenue
predictions for 2019? We’re still finding that Mobile is a key area to focus on.
For leveraging local we’ve seen that searches for near me that include those
words have increased 500% year-over-year. So, it’s still a key area
that users are searching with the term near me in their searches. That’s
something that you’re going to want to continue to focus on as you’re looking
at your search strategy. Site speed, still something important to take a look at,
but we see that users who have to wait for 3 seconds or longer will be dropping
off your site if they have to wait. And that also decreases your conversion rate.
Then finally on mobile if you can reduce friction any possible way by
adding mobile payments as an option, that will really help your conversion rate. If you can add something like an Apple pay that will also really help. Or, an
Amazon integration that will also reduce the friction by making it smooth and
easy for your consumers to checkout. Then also, looking at voice search we’re
seeing an increase in usage in voice search. So, having something like a Google
home or an Amazon echo Alexa in your house, we’re seeing an additional
increase in usage of those so how can you best integrate that with your with
your retail strategy. Estimates suggest that 31 million people in the US
will use their smart speaker to shop this year. That’s an increase of 32%
year-over-year so what are people using they’re smart people speakers for? We’re
seeing that they’re using them to order movies, TV shows, or music. They’re
browsing products. They’re asking for product recommendations. They’re ordering
a previously purchased product. They’re adding products to their
shopping cart. So, for the most part right now this is mainly happening through
Amazon. But, in the future that’s going to continue to increase so you have to make
sure that you’re optimizing your site to be able to use things like schema to
make it easy to to find those on voice search. That’s something we want to
definitely be keeping an eye on. The next trend we’re seeing is around video. Right
now we know that 45% of people are watching more than an hour a week of
video either on YouTube or Facebook. If you’re thinking of your own habits
how are you really engaging with that video it’s probably when you’re
scrolling you may or may not be watching the sound. But we want to think about how
a retailer or an ecommerce site or any sort of brand can be utilizing that time
to be sending their marketing messaging through that. Right now we also see
that the conversion rate on a website, for any website that is using video,
increases their conversion rate by 4.8%. So, it’s worth your time and money to create those assets even if they are labor and resource heavy intensive. When you’re thinking about your video must do’s, you need to make sure your
video is accessible. Not only for a ADA but this also helps from an SEO
perspective. But, also like I said, stats show that about 85% of people are not
turning on their sound when they’re watching videos. So you have to make sure
that people can read the text when they’re watching those videos.
Secondly, video shows thought leadership. You can use videos as an extremely
effective medium from a brand perspective to share your story and your
storytelling through your brand. Finally, transparency with video. We’re
seeing an additional push from not only Millennials but really across the
generations to understand where products are coming from. Sharing something
like transparency and sustainability through video is an ongoing trend that
we’re seeing for all of the brands and retailers that were really working with
and video is such an effective way to really share that. Whether that be in a
30-second video or a 15-second video or even a longer form video. Keeping in
mind that not only can that be shared on social media but it can also be shared
on your website. The next trend is Marketplaces. We saw that Amazon Prime day in
2019, which just occurred, did 15.4% more sales than Black Friday in 2018. Which is
a major aha moment and something that brands really need to be keeping
an eye on as they’re thinking about holiday going into 2019. Now, I think you might
wonder why does that something need to be something that you’re thinking about
as you’re going into holiday for 2019? And I think the reason why is because
consumers are probably doing a lot of holiday purchasing during Amazon Prime
day this year, early in advance because they were getting such good deals on
things like electronics or toys or even clothing. So, how can you really pay
attention to that as you’re going into holiday 2019 to differentiate yourself.
Well, I actually I have a slide coming up that talks about how folks are really willing
to look into discovery and are willing to try out new brands. That’s
something that you can really keep in mind. We’re also seeing emerging
marketplaces and other ways that you can use their feed. One of those interesting
applications is through the Instagram check out that is a something that’s a
new feature this year. We’re seeing that consumers don’t really want to
leave their apps. So, if you’re already in Instagram, that highly engaged Instagram
user is now going to be able to check out through Instagram. That’s been
released for certain brands and it’s being released for more and more brands
every day. As I mentioned, we saw that a lot of people were probably purchasing
holiday gifts during Amazon Prime day, which happened in July, way ahead of the
holiday season this year. But, that shouldn’t scare you only because we know
that consumers are actually open to discovery and finding new brands
throughout the holiday season. So, one of the stats that we’ve seen is
that 61% of consumers are open to shopping new retailers for holiday and
three in four consumers bought a gift from a new
retailer. So, the question is how do you cut through the clutter to find those
consumers and because we know that they’re out there. Some of the ways
that we’ve laid forth in this presentation are some of the ways that
you can do that by utilizing tactics through maybe some of those emerging
marketplaces, through video, or reaching some of those new consumers. Just to
wrap things up the stats that we see are that 55% of holiday shoppers begin
research in October or earlier and about 20% of all December store traffic
happens the six days after Christmas. So, when you think
of a traditional Q4 you really need to think outside the lines a little bit.
Think about October and think about the six days after Christmas and make sure
that you’re not missing those opportunities before and after what you
think of the traditional holiday timeframe. I’m Matt NeSmith the
Director of SEO at Blue Moon Digital and today we’re gonna talk about the season’s
holiday trends for search engine optimization. Every day 140,000 new sites are added to the Internet. On top of that, 5.4 billion
searches occur on a daily basis by people on Google and 15% of those
queries are searches that Google’s never seen before. To keep up with these trends
and how often people are searching and how fast they’re searching, last year
Google made 3,200 updates to their search algorithm. Mobile device usage has
been increasing over the last few years and currently mobile devices account for
over 50% of Google searches. So, why is this happening? Because Google is placing
more emphasis on mobile. But also, people are starting to use their phones more,
they’re out, and about and they’re looking for results near them. Since last
year Google has been moving to mobile first index. And what this means is
that even if your site performs well on desktop devices through a tethered
connection, if your site performs slowly on mobile devices, like a cell phone or
tablet, you will start to lose visibility in the rankings because Google’s
rewarding sites that perform well and load quickly on smaller screens.
So, 60% of mobile searches result in zero clicks because you’re looking at
a smaller screen those search features are taking up more real estate and
pushing organic listings even further. On top of Google making all these
changes in mobile search, we’ve seen a large increase in how people use their
phones themselves. On average, US adults spend about three and a half
hours a day on their phone. And smartphones account for about two thirds
of this time. When considering local there are two important things to know. Google is also placing that local three-pack for searches that historically
don’t have any local intent. We’ve seen this for common search queries such
as men’s jackets, women’s dresses, or anything similar. Where historically you
see shopping ads and organic listings, Google’s now placing a local three-pack
at the top with stores near that user Google’s doing this because location is
very important. The click-through rate for position one local rankings is
25 percent. Thirty percent of mobile searches are related to location
and 50 percent of consumers who performed a local search visited a store
within 24 hours. So, the next section we’ll talk about is the future of search.
One thing Google is doing is starting to introduce journeys directly into the
SERPs. And what this means is they’re adding activity cards and other sorts of
features that show previous search history. They’re doing this because
searches aren’t historically done in one-click manner. Oftentimes if you’re
looking for something new you’re making multiple searches on different topics
and variations of that theme. To support this, they’re adding in activity
cards that show where you’ve been and what you’ve looked at historically and
also adding in suggestions on what you might be able to look at in the future.
Additionally, Google is also adding more visual elements. Because people are using
their mobile devices more often and these screens are smaller, it can be
harder to read smaller fonts. So, instead of looking at text, Google is introducing
images and video into the search results more often. These search results are also
more interactive and you can watch snippets of YouTube videos directly in
Google. Or, if you see something you like you can take a picture of it. You can
search for that item without even using text. If I had to choose one tip for this
holiday season it would be to optimize early. Search is already happening now. So if you wait too long to get your site optimized and ready for the influx of
holiday traffic, it’s going to be too late

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