The Evolution of Search Marketing
Today’s digital marketers know that an omnichannel approach is essential in maximizing customer engagement. There is a multitude of customer touchpoints available, from an estimated 13 connected devices per consumer to new channels like digital out-of-home advertising. However, marketers shouldn’t necessarily overcomplicate their strategy. Very often, optimizing their approach on several key channels is more than enough to engage with customers and build brand affinity.
Search is one such channel that shouldn’t be neglected. Especially since as much as 95% of consumers report that they use search to discover new products, brands, or services, marketers should ensure that they’re optimizing their SEM and SEO efforts. Below are a few important trends that marketers should keep in mind.
The rise of voice search
As more consumers start adopting voice-activated home devices as part of their purchase journey, marketers need to expand their approach to be able to recognize and respond to different syntax and keywords that different demographics of consumers might use to conduct their search. Marketers that invest in speech pattern recognition will be able to understand customer preferences more intuitively.
Take a holistic view of search to build a holistic understanding of your customer
The value of search channels goes both ways: Consumers get the benefit of discovering brands or products they may not have heard of before, while brand marketers and retailers get a deeper understanding of customer interests and intent. Data from organic searches provides marketers with valuable insights into what customers want, where they’re looking for it, and why they want it.
With this level of understanding, marketers can provide offers and messaging that speak to what customers are looking for. This will establish trust and encourage customers to see your brand as a resource, which in turn makes it more likely for them to engage and convert.
Relevance and personalization
As marketers use their search data to build in-depth customer profiles, they will be more able to predict what their customers want. Predictive analytics will uncover the nuances of consumer behavior and interests, and can provide marketers with insights into each customer’s preferences based on past purchases and searches. These insights empower marketers to deliver better, more personalized customer experiences that engage the customer at every step of the purchase journey, strengthening their relationship with the brand.
Search channels are no longer just about discovery or lead generation. In today’s hyper-connected digital world, search is evolving into a valuable brand-building tool. Leaning in to the power of search will enable marketers to respond to specific customer needs and build loyal customer relationships.