5 [Statistics-backed] Search Trends To Follow In 2016

No matter what some critics might say, but search is still effective and give you results. According to the Search Marketing Benchmark 2015 report search is still the second best web traffic generator for businesses around the world.  

  According to a GroupM UK and Nielsen study 94% users still prefer organic results over paid ones.  

  Over here we will discuss 5 major search trends that you need to know to prepare yourself for 2016.  

5 search trends to follow in 2016

#1: Mobile searches:

 As per an eMarketer study mobile searches will soon overtake desktop search in number. It’s also obvious that ad spending would increase for mobile searches as well.  

 You must be thinking a mobile responsive site. Checked! But in order to prepare for 2016, you need to think beyond just a mobile friendly site.  Earlier, you thought about your website, products, content and then customize them for mobile. But now you need to start in a reverse order, starting with mobile then to a website layout, content, and product or service specifications. You need to consider different smart devices, including the wearable ones.  Things you need to check are: Mobile search, mobile search marketing (both organic and paid), mobile search ad budget, mobile payment and coupons (if your business needs one), integrated mobile strategy for social and local, and mobile CRM.  A Google study shows how mobile searches are more important for businesses. 1 in 3 on-the-go mobile search happens just before entering a store while 15% in-store mobile searches are conducted to know more about the product.  

 If your website is mobile ready in the truest sense, you are surely going to win 2016. The Google study also showed that 50% of users visit a brick and mortar store within 24 hours of search on a smartphone.  

#2: Local searches:

 The same Google study shows that 56% of on-the-go searchers have local intent and 51% of local searches take place in-store. It also shows that 18% of all local searches lead to a purchase, while only 7% of purchases are made through non-local searches.  

 So, it’s established that people search for local businesses with a specific buyer intent. And when we are talking about local searches, you must make sure your business information, product details, location, availability, everything appear during a search.   Wondering how to ensure this? Read this article to make your business ready for local searches.  You must be thinking, we’re talking more about localized mobile ad, rather than local searches. You’re right. But it’s also true that local searches are incomplete without mobile and mobile ads. This brings us to our next point.  

#3: Mobile ad searches:

 As shown in the first image, mobile ad spending is on the rise, because they are relevant, address the searcher intent perfectly, and can be targeted to the right audience. The Google survey shows that mobile ads are the best technique to drive local customers to a store.  

 As shown in the graphics, 30% of mobile consumers want local mobile searches as they’re located closer to a store, while 35% of them said that they get the product easily if they search on mobile at the time of purchasing. And 31% said that they prefer mobile searches as they could get them more attractive deals.  Sounds interesting, right? But how do you optimize your mobile ads, so they can attract more and more leads towards your business? The answer is, again, optimize your business for local searches, but for mobile. However, make sure your address and contact information is there on the ad.  

* Image: Search Engine Land Believe it or not, your consumers, too, want to see your ads while on the go or when they search for a local business. The Google report shows that 72% of tablet users and 67% of smartphone users prefer ads that are customized for their local zip code. And 70% of tablet users and 61% of smartphone users want to see ads that are customized for the neighborhood only.  

#4: Voice searches:

 Have you ever considered voice search while strategizing for search? If not, then you must, now. Another Google report shows that 55% of teens regularly use voice search for daily searches while 56% of adults stated that it made them feel more tech-savvy to voice-search on Google.  Over the past few years, it’s seen that conversational keywords are on the rise, according to a Search Engine Watch study. These conversational keywords are WH questions like “who”, “what”, “where” etc. Among all the WH questions “Who” is the highest search generator, as per the study. 

 The writer of the article, next, studied various devices to understand where these conversations or searches were made. It’s found that tablet tops the list with 171%, which might be a direct impact of voice search, as indicated in the article.  

 Wondering how will you be able to play with this card? Create more and more content that helps you rank in voice searches, especially that address the WH questions of your customers. For example, if you are in travel industry, voice searches for queries like “what’s the best hotels in Perth?”, or “Tell me the luxury hotels in Perth” would help you.  

#5: Direct/Rich answer searches:

 You must have noticed that Google now offers direct answers to queries more frequently than ever. According to a report, Google rich answers account for 19.5% of all results. 

 These rich or direct answers are actually intended to help the user with the best answer to his query in the quickest way possible. These answers appear on the top of search results, thus catch the eyeballs of the users very easily.  

 As you can see Google often refers to the source of the rich answer, which could be any website. Here is your chance to overtake your competitors. If you create web pages that can impress Google so much to cite as rich answers, you are a clear winner in 2016.  We know that this may not be applicable for all businesses. But if your business can generate content that fits rich answer requirements, you surely need to do it.  

Summing up:

 To sum up the entire story so far, mobile search and local search along with mobile ads are of utmost importance for search 2016. After all, it’s, now, all about how well you please your users, and not search engines. Right?  Join our community to get more such cool trends and predictions directly inboxed to you!