So it’s that time of year – predictions time! What does Your Google Guy see in his crystal ball? Besides a lot of political ads on TV? OK, here we go…
Many Trends Continue – Video, WordPress and Twitter will continue to all grow and become a normal part of web marketing this year. The bleeding-edge and leading-edge marketers have blazed a trail, and the middle of the pack will follow. #JustDoIt
Google+ Straggles Along – Remember all that noise in the middle of 2011, when everyone was SO excited about Google+? Yeah, now it’s crickets. I believe Google+ will be one of those things you do solely for SEO purposes (a +1 page for your business, a +1 button on your website) but don’t spend a lot of time on. But I would spend the time to do those two things, folks.
Facebook – Ch-ch-ch-changes! Facebook continues to change, and the question is whether they will manage it well (and continue to be the “stickiest” site on the Internet) or whether some combination of privacy issues, “spooky” or invasive advertisements, Timeline-backlash, or the depressing impacts of its use will cause the kingdom to start to crumble. I’m not saying it’s going anywhere, folks, just that the win-streak will end at some point.
Facebook Ads – will come of age, as marketers really learn how to take advantage of the treasure trove of demographic data they are sitting on. First adopters will learn lessons, and others will build on them. (Oh yes, keep an eye on YourGoogleGuy.com – you might see something on this soon).
Google – three solid, non-glamorous predictions. First, Google’s classic search engine (the core that most people think of as Google) will only change incrementally. They are too smart to mess with success too much, especially with no one currently nipping at their heels. Second, I predict the same for Google Adwords. Adwords is the “Golden Egg” for Google – it’s where the money is made. They won’t mess with it. What you created in 2008 should still work (with some increased bids). But prediction #3 is – ORGANIC results will continue to change rapidly. They’ll become more personalized. SEO will continue to become more difficult to predict & control. It will be harder to hold onto ranking, and you’ll need more attention on it, if organic rankings are what drive your web traffic.
Smart Phones – since they have become a center of human activity, it will be interesting how it will impact their use. I personally use mine to find things like restaurants, movie theaters, stores, etc. I still use the trusty computer when I am doing more in-depth research. In 2012, I would start making sure your website shows up to some degree on smart-phone browsers.
Siri – Danger, Google, Danger! What some wise people have noticed is that Siri now jumps in where a search engine might have been before. And chooses the results, editing them down for you. This might be the year we start seeing S.R.O. – Siri Results Optimization.
All the best, Peter
P.S. – Superbowl XLVI – Saints over Texans (since my Seahawks are out)
P.P.S. – 2012 Election – Obama over Romney (not politicking, just predicting, folks)