Specialist communications and internet guru, Sally Falkow, shares her top five trends for effective internet marketing strategy for 2005:
1. Search Engine Optimization
Natural Search Engine Optimization is gaining ground fast. Companies will invest in upgrading and optimizing their websites, using persuasive architecture and optimized content, so they can capture the 76% of searchers who click only on the natural search results, as opposed to paid results. Optimized content generation will make an appearance as a line item on website redesign budgets.
2. Usability Testing of Websites
Jupiter Research estimates that corporate America will spend $2.6 billion on search engine marketing (SEM) in 2005. Clearly, the market has recognized that internet search engines like Google, Yahoo! and others are effective in delivering consumers to company websites. And since most websites lose over 60% of their visitors right off the home page due to problems like confusing navigation and lack of relevant content, all this money is being wasted. Usability reviews and testing will be in corporate website budgets in 2005 so that the site actually becomes an effective marketing tool.
3. Optimized Press Releases
News search engines have more readers than CNN and the BBC. They are the number one choice for news in the 18 – 54 age group. Even loyal newspaper readers go online for their news and read their paper as a leisure activity. An optimized press release ranked high in the news engines is the best way to get fast search visibility and have qualified prospects find your news. Businesses wanting to reach their market online will invest in optimizing their press releases for the News Engines.
4. Business Blogging
Bloggers came into the mainstream with the last US election. People became aware of the power of blogging, and Corporate America was quick to see the value in this tool. Business blogging is becoming a hot new marketing and PR tool.
5. RSS and syndication
Syndication of content through the use of RSS feeds is set to become one of the hottest trends of 2005. Not only can your public subscribe to your RSS feeds directly, your content can reach a wider audience through other websites using the content. RSS can also be used to assist relevant journalists by offering them a feed of industry information.