The new year always brings new advancements in technology and with those advancements there are always new marketing trends that seem to develop. In this post I am going to run through, what I believe to be the newest online marketing trends of 2012.

Top 10 Internet Marketing Trends of 2012 are:

Number 1: Value Based Marketing.

Companies will demand an Internet marketing strategy that shows tangible results. It’s not just about rankings and traffic; it’s about leads, sales & measurable results that prove ROI. Key Performance Indicators must be used to track the success of your company’s marketing campaign.

Number 2: Rich Snippets.

Google will provide more information about your website to searchers without them having to click to the site. I HATE THIS! This hurts your marketing efforts because it reduces page views and makes your sales funnel a bit smaller. Because of this it is more important ever to have an aesthetically appealing website. Consumers are much more likely to click on your page if it has a newer/fresh design.

Number 3: Vanishing Data in Google Analytics..

So in an effort to make search more secure, Google is really dropping a bomb on SEO. Google will hide more information about your website in Google Analytics. This makes will make it more challenging to sift through the pertinent data to find the Key Performance Indicators that matter.

Being an internet marketer, we really live and die by our Google Analytics reports. We want to track the keywords people use to find us cheap nba jerseys and the referring websites that sent them here. I cheap nba jerseys mean just like any other corner store on Main St. we all want to increase our Google traffic.

The ability to measure ROI for SEO and online Advertising is the reason why we do it in the first place. Now we’re about to take a major body wholesale mlb jerseys shot to keep these keywords hidden.

So here is the basic overview of what the Google update is doing to our precious resource: A user logged into a Google product (Google+, Google Docs, Gmail, etc) and They perform an organic search (i.e. fly fishing) and they find your website via the search result and click through to your site you will not be able to see what organic keyword they used to find your site, nor their visitor session information from Google Analytics associated with that keyword.

So what does it mean?

It means you won’t be able to effectively measure or track organic search funneling/conversions from logged in users. Google states that users that are “anonymously” searching on Google will still be captured. i.e. not logged in.

So is this a big deal?

Oh Yeah! Over time you will start to see your organic keyword results drop which will make it harder to determine how visits are coming in. It’s also going to impact keyword research because Google will also encrypt that data in the Keyword Tool app as well.

But wait, of course there’s a catch! You will still see keywords tracked for logged in users if they use paid keywords to get to you.  I’ve looked at Enthusiasts some research done on this topic and found that analysts are saying that there’s still a way to track organic keyword referrals by making your site secure. This is still an unproven method and we’ll have to wait to see if they are right.

So what do we do now? There’s not much we can do. We don’t own this data to begin with. Google says the impact will only be in the single percentage digits in the grand scheme of things. In other words, less than 10% of organic search traffic is done while logged in. That’s great for now, but Google wants users to be logged in. They just launched Google+ and have been slowly rolling out seamless Gmail accounts. The design of all Google apps are becoming more unified. They are becoming more advanced with their mobile Android platform. Here’s a bold prediction for ya, you won’t be able to do anything on Google without being logged in.

The Takeaway

Remember, SEO is just one (albeit very large) part of driving traffic to your site. My favorite is still Inbound Marketing which includes e-mail newsletters, social media, and connecting. If this is a pivot for SEO, we’ll have to start putting more emphasis on other areas of getting that traffic and making money.

Number 4: Mobile Marketing Grows Up.

When mobile marketing first started to develop I have to admit I was almost certain that it was going to be in the form of text messaging. This was years and years ago, but text messaging had its little moment in the sun but mobile marketing has really evolved from those days. And you know what? Mobile marketing will continue to grow at an AMAZING rate. Customers are now using mobile search to do their shopping, especially for local products and services, especially food. As a result, mobile optimized websites are going to be a necessity for your success. 71% of users search after seeing mobile ad, 53% purchase due to mobile search and 90% of mobile search results in action. If I was a betting man I would bet the farm on seeing the demand for QR Codes growing along with the mobile trend in 2012 – 2013.

Number 5: The Rise of Local Search Marketing.

Local search and Google Local in particular will be more important than ever. Google will continue to make local results a more crucial component of its search algorithm. As a result of so many mobile users looking for local products and services, mobile and local are intertwined. Thus, there is now a new marketing strategy being called “MoLo.” There are 4 Billion local searches on Google per month, 61% of all local searches result in a purchase, and 55% of consumers use their mobile device to buy local products/services.

Number 6:  Social Media Merges With Search.

Google+, the search giant’s new social network, will impact search engine rankings. As a result, Google+ has to be a Yahoo? key part of a company’s SEO strategy in 2012. Overall, social engagement across all platforms is important for a balanced SEO campaign.

Number 7: Video Content Matters.

When I meet with a client regarding a web project I always mention that a visitor needs to be engaged with their website. If they are able to navigate through your site easily and be entertained as well they are likely to return. Video is more important as the web moves mobile and becomes more interactive. Videos are now a bigger part of Google’s search results as Google learns to index video content. Videos account for 50% of all online traffic as of January 2012. Not only do videos boost your company’s visibility, but they promote engagement. Customers exposed to videos are much more likely to engage your brand.

Number 8: Don’t Let Others Tarnish Your Reputation.

As the Internet becomes more valuable, so does your company’s online reputation. This is because your business can be harmed by the reviews and comments angry customers post online. 90% of consumers trust online reviews, and 78% search a company online before buying product or service.

When we first started adding the social media links to our clients websites it was basically limited to Facebook, Twitter, and Myspace  (haha yeah Myspace! remember Tom!). Recently I have been adding Yelp and a Google Places link along with Facebook and Twitter.

Lets face the facts, eventually you are going Gallery to get a bad review. Regardless of how superior your company is there will always be “that guy” so what can you do about “that guy”? Encourage your current satisfied customers to visit your business on Google Places and Yelp to place a positive review. If you do happen to have 1 angry review from some disgruntled customer you have 15 – 20 other positive reviews to [1]…. add some other opinions to your businesses section. And by having a Google Places and Yelp link on your website it is only a click away from adding that positive review.

Number 9: Nurture New Leads, Don’t Waste Them.

As your online market becomes more competitive, leads are harder to come by and more valuable. Startling as it may seem, recent research (and even studies from ten years ago) shows that longer-term leads (future opportunities) often ignored by salespeople, represent almost 80% of potential sales. Every lead must be nurtured via email marketing. Lead nurturing helps people find the answers to these questions and remind them of the benefits of working with you. You’re creating value by You! giving them useful information in digestible, bite-sized chunks. This is because 50% of qualified leads aren’t ready to buy immediately after being contacted. Meanwhile, lead nurturing emails have 10x the response rate as do stand-alone email blasts.

Number 10: Your Linking Strategy Must Evolve for SEO.

Linking remains a pillar of your search engine exposure, but link diversity is now more crucial than ever. Simple anchor text links must be replaced with varied anchor text links to look more natural and gain the approval of the search engine crawlers. Reciprocal linking, once shunned by the search engines, is now helpful if performed with the right link partners.