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Digital 100: Top Industry Trends of 2020 by Tomas Seliokas of SimilarWeb

Written by Sarah Ross on 16th February 2021

Tomas Seliokas presented “Digital 100: Top Industry Trends of 2020” at Anicca Digital’s 6th Leicester Digital Live Conference on 16th February.

You can watch the replay here, download the pdf and read the summary below:

Watch the video

Read and download the pdf here


12pm – Tomas Seliokas, SimilarWeb

Read the summary

Digital marketing trends

As part of Leicester Digital Live, Tomas Seliokas, Strategic Consultant at SimilarWeb, takes a look at digital trends and how businesses can leverage data to inform their own marketing activities. Through an analysis of the top 100 sites worldwide, Tomas provides actions to take when developing our own strategies.

Context is important when making decisions for marketing and when deciding where to concentrate your efforts. Digital intelligence data enables us to make better decisions and better optimise our marketing channels, driving more traffic and conversions.

To do this we need to understand user behaviour and where users are spending their time.

We can take a generic look across industries as a whole or in a more granular way, which enables us to see what is happening on specific websites. The granular approach allows us to understand what channels are driving traffic and what part of a website they are driving traffic to.

 

Web traffic is on the rise overall on the top 100 sites

This growth provides us with bigger audiences to address overall, but you need to understand how traffic has grown for your industry in order to benchmark your activity.

You cannot know what is a good KPI without the overall picture of your industry.

In 2020, grocery sales increased due to the increase in shopping online, but did all online supermarkets grow during this time?

Understanding the bigger picture within your industry will help you to identify when you are underperforming and take the necessary steps to gain your market share.

 

Traffic increases worldwide

Desktop traffic has declined over last three years, with mobile overtaking. However, in the last 12 months we have seen desktop traffic grow as a result of people working from home and having more time to spend online via desktop.

The prediction was that mobile growth would be much bigger than desktop in this period, but the key takeaway is that you should not ignore desktop, especially in the current climate.

Top tip: Look at how traffic has changed specifically for your industry to make sure you are not losing out on some aspects of your audience. Is traffic coming to your site via desktop or mobile? And how has this changed over the last 12 months?

 

Attention spans are getting shorter

Analysis of visit duration shows that time on site has been decreasing over the last three years.

If users spend less time on site, then you need to consider how to communicate effectively with them.

You have to be bolder with your messaging and make it clear to users, because they will not spend very long on your website.

We see this decline on both mobile and desktop, but you will need to consider how this impacts your specific industry.

Are your own users becoming less engaged? What can you do to encourage traffic to stay on your site?

 

Social Media & Streaming

We need to know where people are spending their time to know how to spend our budget.

What are the opportunities in the social space and how can you leverage these?

Growth in downloads of social apps shows user uptake and overall growth in the market.

TikTok is overtaking all channels and has grown during lockdown. The picture is the same worldwide and illustrates what the future of social is going to look like.

TikTok is becoming bigger than Facebook and Instagram, and is taking a portion of their market share.

The good news is that is has a small market share in general but is growing really fast.

In terms of brands, those who establish themselves on platforms that are new can grow their audiences quicker. Being an early adopter enables you to gain a larger share of voice.

TikTok is focused on organic usage, so there are big ROI advantages and there is no advertising spend required to get started. And while the audience might not be huge for you now, it will grow in the future.

 

Shopping category has experienced tremendous growth of 21% in 2020

Shopping is growing, but are users spending more money? The data shows us that there is an increase in conversions and spend.

Traffic to shopping sites has increased by 21% in 2020 – the biggest jump we have ever seen.

Lockdown has been the catalyst for this growth, but brands need to maximise their marketing activities to gain their share.

Businesses can grab their share of the market and keep it as returning customers, as demonstrated by the grocery sector, but those who don’t get in fast enough do not get their market share.

If you don’t capitalise on the opportunity with marketing then competitors will occupy the space, leaving you to play catch up. Take the opportunity to capture that extra audience.

 

The UK and the US have experienced the largest growth in online shopping during 2020

You should make a competition set so you can compare to your own industry. It will enable you to set KPIs that you can meet and that are realistic.

We are seeing shopping websites slashing their paid budgets and relying on referrals and affiliates more than ever before.

Paid advertising has been declining year on year, including paid search and display.

The trend in 2020 was an increase in referral traffic and affiliates, as more brands begin to understand the benefits of the channel. It is an efficient channel with good engagement rates and conversions, delivering an 18% – 20% conversion rate on referral traffic.

Top tip: Identify referrals that you are missing out on and target them with your activity.

 

Connect with Tomas Seliokas on LinkedIn.