Search engine optimisation has always evolved alongside marketing trends. While its core strategies such as strategic keyword insertions, high-quality content creation, link building, and mobile optimisation have remained the same, user intent and preferences change with the times. SEO specialists may follow a guidebook, but the execution is flexible and bends according to customer behaviour.
There is no doubt that the COVID-19 pandemic will have ripple effects in digital marketing throughout 2021. On top of that, Google’s upcoming algorithm update will also change the focus from ensuring safe and seamless browsing to avoiding any detriments to user experience.
With these in mind, Vaccoda gives you a list of digital marketing strategies that can take your business forward in 2021. Let’s get started.
1. Focus on core web vitals
The new year always comes with news of a recently launched or impending Google algorithm update. This year, we have the Page Experience Update to look forward to in May. For the longest time, Google ranked websites based on how well they adhered to the webmaster’s guidelines of publishing quality content, enhancing user experience with navigable, fast-loading, and mobile-friendly web pages, sufficient keyword optimisation, quality link-building, and more.
All of the above still factor into this new update (because they make up a user’s “page experience”), only Google has more refined and defined metrics for speed and usability. This leads us to the following Core Web Vitals:
- Largest Contentful Paint (LCP), or the time it takes for the largest content to load on-page. The ideal speed should be 2.5 seconds.
- First Input Delay (FID), or the time it takes for the page to be responsive, i.e., when users can start scrolling or clicking even as it continues to load. The ideal speed is less than 100ms.
- Cumulative Layout Shift (CLS) refers to how “stable” a web page loads; that is, when a text first appears on the page and users begin to ingest it, they’re not jarred by its sudden disappearance due to the delayed loading of a massive image above it.
The Core Web Vitals will have more weight for search rankings this year, so improve on these areas before the expected May rollout.
2. Strengthen relationships with existing customers
One of the most important lessons digital marketers learned in 2020 is to cherish existing customers and nurture these relationships. Strong one-to-one relationships between businesses and customers can make the difference between caving in and surviving during an economic crisis.
How does this affect digital marketing? Brands and businesses must establish a platform where they will foster first-party relationships. It can be through email, social media, website blog, a store-exclusive app or a third-party platform. Building relationships and establishing engagement mediums will also be helpful for both customer retention and acquisition.
3. Develop relatable marketing messages
The pandemic upended marketing last year. Brands needed to be more sensitive to real-world problems and those that succeed at showing empathy while promoting the good their products and services can offer gained more followings. Louis Vuitton and Ford even took things a step further and changed their production from luxury perfumes and cars to hand sanitisers and ventilators.
Tone is very important in marketing as excessive and theme-focused campaigns can come off as tone-deaf. The expectation that brands will continue to speak in a sensitive tone and market to an informed audience will continue this year.
4. Leverage social media for e-commerce
Cottage businesses are experts at using social media as a marketplace, and big brands can follow their lead this time around. We all know that social media platforms are not only for socialisation. They are also prime venues for discovery. As online sellers have long discovered, enabling customers to discover and transact on the same site can save so much time and effort and generate sales faster than the traditional, website-based conversion funnel.
We can go on with more tips, but we’ll focus on these four for now. If you’re interested in applying these strategies to your digital marketing this year, Vaccoda can do it for you.
Let’s have a chat about your digital marketing and SEO goals in 2021 and beyond. Contact us today via our contact form, or give us a call on 020 8776 0400 to discuss further!