While 2013 already saw big changes in search engine algorithms and growing adoption of mobile commerce, 2014 will see even more e-commerce being conducted from various mobile devices. After Google Penguin, Panda, and Hummingbird, Google’s big move appears to be Local Carousel. This is clearly about making search results more relevant for local searches being performed on mobile devices. Most searches on mobile are performed with a high intent to purchase. This is precisely what affiliate marketers want to target.
Mobile internet is going to overtake desktop surfing sometime within this year. More than half of the traffic to the top 500 e-retailers is going to be from smartphones within this year. Almost three-quarters of smartphone users shop using their phones. Mobile sales as a percentage of e-commerce sales is growing and is set to reach about 20% this year.
Hence it’s clear that smartphone users use their devices not only to log in to the various social media platforms but to make online purchases as well. This shows that opportunities abound for affiliate marketers in social shopping and social media ads. Since most smartphone users tend to be gamers currently or in the past, social gaming is one way to target them. Affiliate marketers can proactively drive conversations by coming up with different social media campaigns such as quizzes on Twitter (with a few prizes on offer) where they seek to make a hashtag trend by motivating Twitter users to tweet using a certain hashtag.
As Google increases its Google Local services with Carousel, affiliate marketers should explore local search. It’s well known that smartphone users who conduct local searches tend to make a purchase within an hour. This is the kind of potential customer every marketer would like to be able to target.
More than half of e-mails are now being opened on mobile devices. Affiliate marketers will need to modify their e-mail campaigns accordingly so that users read the mailers and marketers get an opportunity to influence the customers’ buying decisions.
With more than half of Facebook’s ad revenue now coming from mobile users, affiliate marketers need to have a mobile strategy to target the more than 250 million Facebook users who access it exclusively via their mobile devices.
Online marketing is becoming more and more about content marketing and social media marketing across diverse platforms. A social media campaign can no longer be limited to just Facebook, Twitter and LinkedIn. Google+, Pinterest, Tumblr, Instagram, and Stumble Upon all offer new and challenging summits for marketers to climb. Ad targeting is becoming ever more effective with browser cookies and affiliate marketers need to harness the same.
Blogging is an effective tool to drive up rankings in search engine result pages (SERPs). To be effective, the blog needs to be updated regularly with new content that is informative. This will create dedicated readership for the blog leading to blog posts getting social media shares and further readership.
Luxury brands are slowly recognizing the importance of mobile technology (albeit rather slowly) and modifying their websites to cater to luxury shoppers who are willing to make purchases online presenting further opportunities for affiliate marketers. Luxury brands will be able to vastly expand their markets to places such as China (where many newly wealthy crave for brand-name luxury items) by enabling online transactions.
So affiliate marketing success stories of 2014 will be those that keep in step with the changing tastes of customers. Go mobile. Design simple and user-friendly websites catering to website visitors using handheld devices with touch screens.
Follow Google’s guidelines about categorizing your business while submitting it to Google and having a Google+ business page so that Google shows the site in Local search results. Contact Logicserve Digital for expert advice about how to make this happen.