Predictions for 2013 – From the Reload Digital Team


Time to gaze into the crystal ball…(remember, if you agree with our predictions please give us a Like/Tweet/+1!)

After much discussion in the office, we foresee some major shockwaves flowing through digital in 2013. Some of the anticipated changes and shifts barely even warrant comment – for example, there’s nothing new in the prediction that mobile will continue to grow as a platform of choice. But some of our other thoughts might be a little more surprising.

Reload Digital’s Cara, Rick and Paul put their necks on the block with their predictions for 2013…

Paul Jackson

1. A big change in social media – both a speeding up and a slowing down. Social will become increasingly important to all business’ online strategies and integration into every aspect of online activity will continue, but the development of new platforms and the progress of existing new platforms will hit a wall.

2. This is a bit out there, but Pinterest will plummet into obscurity and Instagram use will have begun to tail off by late 2013. Similarly, the likes of Foursquare will follow suit (assuming you believe Foursquare to have ever come out of obscurity).

Google+ will increase in importance and users as its integration with all other Google features continues. Myspace will see a burst of activity from music fans and reminiscing twenty-somethings, but this will be short lived. Microsoft’s ‘Socl’ adds little to the social scene, but as with Google+, the potential for it to be forced upon internet users through integration in other products could give the network a lifeline – an unlikely survivor however. ‘Medium’, the upcoming social network from the founders of Twitter has real potential, but it is still more than likely to end up on the social media scrap heap.

3. Meanwhile, Facebook, Twitter, YouTube and LinkedIn will become the primary focus again, incorporating a broader range of features and possibilities.

Cara Whitehouse

1. SEO is going to change beyond recognition. The shift is well underway already – since Panda and Penguin started breeding in SEOland – and I think SEO is going to increasingly resemble a form of online PR. Old-school ‘technical’ SEO techniques such as article spinning and directory listings already don’t cut it. It’s all about fantastic content and brilliant content promotion. Which is going to make SEO more creative, skilled and expensive.

2. eCommerce stores will jump onto the brilliant new Facebook Gifts format of buying. Facebook’s genius process works like this:

  • You buy a gift for a friend
  • They receive an alert showing them your gift
  • They have the option to change its size / colour / flavour etc before it is actually shipped
  • They input the address they want it shipped to
  • They enjoy a gift they actually want, in the correct size and colour, delivered to the most convenient address, rather than to home when no one’s there, etc, etc.

You get the point. A brilliant new way of ‘safe’ gift buying that will encourage people to spend more, in the knowledge that their recipient can easily change that bright pink T-shirt in X-small to a navy one in medium…

Rick Eliason

1. The visual content revolution will go into overdrive, with multiple mediums contributing to all content produced. Say goodbye to boring text-heavy articles.

2. SEO’s and online marketers themselves will need to adapt to changing business needs by expanding their skill set. SEO companies will build strong relationships with PR companies, graphic design agencies, mobile website developers, video production businesses etc.

3. As the SEO/online marketing landscape continues to grow, services will become more expensive, potentially alienating smaller companies with smaller budgets.

Other: Google+ usage gets serious and schema mark-up becomes as critical and commonplace as meta-tag optimisation.

Do you agree/disagree with our predictions? Do you have something to add? What are your predictions? Discuss on our Facebook page, we love a good debate!

Paul Jackson

Senior Digital Marketing Consultant

With almost a decade of experience in digital marketing, both in-house and agency-side, Paul is a CIM qualified Chartered Marketer with expertise and a refreshing approach. Paul’s experience with a diverse mix of brands in a wide range of industries has allowed him to see first-hand the importance of a tailored and business-oriented approach to marketing.