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Social media: Top five trends for 2016

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The growth of smartphone usage and evolution of social media is moving at pace. Over 75 per cent of adults now own a smartphone, 53 per cent of whom check their devises within five minutes of waking up. 

Growing businesses, wanting to ensure they are communicating in way that responds to current consumer behaviour, can’t afford to get left behind. You snooze, you lose!

Below are the top five social media trends for 2016 that will give SMEs the ability to ensure your social media activity is line with this ever changing world.

1) Mobile – the epicentre of communication

Mobile has to be a number one priority for any business’s digital activity whether or not you sell online. More and more, mobiles play a key role in pre-purchase research, with 50 per cent of consumers visiting a store within one day of conducting their research on a smartphone.

Putting mobile first means ensuring your digital activity provides the right user journey, making the consumer experience as seamless on mobile as it is on desktop. What works on desktop make not necessarily directly translate on to mobile so think about design, layout and the amount of content used. 

Google Analytics can provide data on the percentage of consumers visiting your site by device type so you can ensure your online presence is directly responsive to your consumers’ online usage behaviour. What’s more, Google is already penalising sites that are not mobile responsive, so ensuring your web presence meets this criteria will positively impact your SEO rankings too.

2) Reviews, reviews, reviews 

These will impact that consumer’s ultimate choice to click the “buy” button more than ever before. Eighty-five per cent of consumers say they will read up to ten reviews before making a purchase. 

Acquiring consumer reviews needs to be part of our day to day business – whether it’s about gaining reviews on a product purchased or a service provided. Having a process in place to acquire these and keep them updated will not only impact the propensity for a client or customer to take the next step in the journey to your business, it can also impact your brand’s Google rankings.

3) Make customer service top of mind

More than 65 per cent of consumers are now using social media channels for their queries and complaints. 

While it may be easier for the consumer, it comes with certain expectations and risks for businesses as 42 per cent of consumers expect a response within an hour and the conversation may well be public. 

Whomever manages your social media channels must wear a customer service hat when it comes to responding to queries quickly and efficiently. More than ever, it is imperative they live and breathe your business’s customer service policies and that procedures are in place for dealing for all types of queries that can land on your Facebook wall or Twitter feed.

Discover other social media trends for 2016 on page two…

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