For months, marketing pros have been warning us about the trends that could potentially shape the digital landscape in 2013. Now that a new year has finally arrived, it’s time to start finding out which predictions will actually pan out. A lot of the focus was shun directly on Google, so in this post, we will look at six reasons why the search giant deserves the spotlight over the next calendar year.
1. Search is Getting More Competitive (sort of)
According to data from comScore, Bing set a milestone for Microsoft by gaining 16% of the search market share in the U.S. in October, 2012. It should be noted that the same set of data reveals that Google reached 66.9, which was a record for the company. While Google appears to have things in order on the search front, it is clear to see that internet consumers are looking beyond its core product to discover content. StumbleUpon, Twitter, and YouTube, the second largest search engine, are among the tools competing for the attention of Google Search users.
2. Author Rank is Becoming a Factor
Author Rank was such a hot topic in 2012, that it’s relevance will no doubt carry over into the new year. It is speculated that Google will assign a rank that takes the reputation and authority of a specific author into consideration when determining search rankings. If Author Rank was to become a factor, it would make getting set up with Google’s authorship initiative and creating quality, original content more important than ever. No wonder the SEO community is in such a frenzy trying to get prepared.
3. Google+ is Turning Heads
Quite a few pundits refused to give Google+ a chance despite its fast start out of the gates. However, the social platform lives on, and Author Rank could be the reason it survives in 2013 and beyond. In order to get up and running with authorship, authors must connect their content to their Google+ profile. Combine that aspect with the belief that Google shows indexing and ranking favoritism to content published on its social platform, and it becomes clear to see why more brands are planning to dedicate their time to G+ in 2013.
4. Voice Search Technology Getting Sexier
Apple captivated a global audience when introducing Siri, the application that uses Nuance’s voice recognition technology to help iOS users organize their schedules and find information. Google has something similar in Voice Search, a service some say is even more efficient at what it does than Siri. The main advantage Google has in the voice tech department is a wealth of data, which gives it near limitless potential in terms of usage scenarios. 2013 could be the year we literally hear more from Voice Search, and less from the loveable Siri.
5. Chrome is Being Challenged
Thanks to the fast and efficient Chrome, Google’s entry into the web browser market has been a very successful one. Chrome has become a favorite of many users who have grown tired of the security and performance issues associated with other browsers. This favoritism has been reflected in statistics documenting its meteoric rise. But with the latest data from Net Applications showing that Chrome has lost users for three consecutive months, Google could be planning updates that enable its browser to boost the web surfing experience yet another notch.
6. Android is Growing in Dominance
2012 was a huge year for Android, the Google operating system that powers an array of phones, tablets, and other devices. A recent report by Gartner revealed that Android snagged an impressive 72% of smartphone sales in the third quarter of 2012. With an exciting lineup of phones and tablets already on tap, 2013 is looking even more promising for the versatile mobile platform. Competitors such as Apple and Microsoft may have a real problem on their hands.
Another Big Year for the G-Team
With phones, computers, and TV technology to tend to, 2013 is shaping up to be a pretty interesting year for the folks up in Mountain View, California. And let’s not forget about those futuristic sexy specs being cooked up in Project Glass. Google has become a very important figure in today’s world, especially for those dealing with the digital side of it. The moves it makes have the power to impact consumers and marketers alike, so following them can be viewed as a way of staying a step ahead.
About the author:
Francis Santos is a writer for Benchmark Events, a best practices event marketing company.