Predicting the future might seem like an impossibility, but if you pay close enough attention to specific trends in your industry, predicting how things will turn out becomes less of a stretch and more of an intelligent guessing game.
I did some snooping around the Internet recently and came across quite a few intriguing notions about predicted changes regarding website design, analytics, blogs, and social media that may, or may not, become reality. Read on and remember, ‘Only time will tell.’
• Say Goodbye to Flash – A long time dying, Flash has finally be eliminated from Androids and smartphones, so expect Flash to fade away entirely and very soon.
• The Death of ROI – It isn’t that everyone is magically no longer concerned with their ‘rate of return,’ it’s just that you can’t adequately quantify this anymore in a way that makes sense. Other types of metrics will trickle in to takes its place for sure, but thankfully, the ROI frenzy seems to be slipping away.
• No More Corporate Blogging – It seems more and more corporations are ditching their blogs for Facebook instead. Given Facebook’s popularity (it’s slipping though; see below), why spend money on a website and worry over SEO when you can simply ‘rent’ a Facebook page?
• Text Breaks – One of the most popular trends in blogging these days in in using lots of text breaks, bullet points, and lists for the sake of readability. Turns out, people love lists, and text that’s broken-up into nice short sections of a few lines each.
• Facebook Loosing Face – Due to all the crazy privacy scandals and other personal annoyances, Facebook lost 6 million subscribers in 2011. And with other similar sites like Tumblr and Google+ on the rise, Facebook could be overshadowed soon.
• Over-saturated Market – At current count, there’s something like 216 social media sites up and running. NO ONE has that kind of time on their hands, unless we figure out how to slow the Earth’s rotation. At most, the average person can only handle 3 to 5 social media sites effectively. So developing more of them just doesn’t make a lot of business sense anymore.
In the end, no one really knows in which direction things will go. When you’re talking about an industry that changes faster than a chameleon swaps colors, trying to guess where the Web will take us makes about as much sense as predicting the weather . . . we can get reasonably close, but it’s still just a shot in the dark.