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What Were the Biggest Online Marketing Trends of 2013?

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content_marketing.png2013 will go down as a transition year in the world of online marketing. Things long thought permanent, like print media, aka newspapers, and traditional advertising, are either dying a slow death or are already in the grave. There have been so many changes this year, and here are five of the biggest ones we’ve seen in internet marketing.

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  1. Content marketing is king. Almost two decades ago, Bill Gates stated that "Content is king" in regards to Internet success. 2013 saw a distinct shift toward content marketing from companies of all sizes. Even a couple of years ago, content marketing was a part of many company's sales and marketing plans, but not the main focus. Today, that has changed. Companies are putting a good deal of their sales and marketing efforts towards building quality content.
  2. Hummingbird has taken flight. September 2013 saw Google's rollout of the Hummingbird update. The focus of this algorithm change was to enhance the engine's ability to do a semantic search. So, instead of blindly searching for each word in the keyword phrase separately, the search engine tries to figure out the meaning of the entire keyword phrase to give the searcher the best results possible.
  3. Mobile is no longer optional. For the past few years, many experts have advised clients to add mobile-friendly features to their websites. Today, that advice has changed. Experts are now telling clients to update their entire site to a responsive design that looks good on all size screens. Millions of people are using smartphones and other mobile devices to conduct searches, do product research, and make purchases. Website owners need to keep their designs up to date and ready for this emerging audience.
  4. Google killed black hat SEO tactics. If you have tried to do keyword research in the last six to eight months on Google, you may have noticed a trend. Many keywords come up with no data. The fact is that Google has made marketing data on many keywords private. They are not sharing it with the world any longer. This has devastated the ranks of black hat SEO experts. Instead of loading a page with the highest ranking keywords possible, they have had to switch strategies.
  5. Google+ makes its presence known. Many internet marketers have focused their social media efforts on Twitter and Facebook. The smart ones are looking beyond those mainstays. Google has positioned its Google+ platform to become a major player in the world of internet marketing. One feature getting a lot of notice is the authorship feature. With a bit of code and a profile on Google+, content authors can have their profile photo appear in search engine results. this impacts the click-through rates seen on those articles.

The world of internet marketing has seen some significant shifts in 2013. Three out of the five top trends we discussed above had to do with Google. That’s a pretty good prediction for what’s to come next year. Whether you are a small business, run a non-profit organization or simply enjoy keeping up with the latest and greatest in online marketing, you can’t deny the power of internet marketing. 

Questions and Final Thoughts

What do you think about all these changes? What are your predictions for 2014

photo courtesy of supakitmod / Free Digital Photos
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