2024 is set to be another year of monumental change for marketers, with Google’s Search Generative Experience update rolling out this year and AI continuing to make waves and headlines in the marketing world.

We asked our marketing team what they thought the biggest trends would be for the year ahead, here are their predictions:


Voice search optimisation will become even more of a priority for businesses (not just consumers)

Mimi – Senior Marketing Executive


The rising popularity of voice assistants makes voice search optimisation an important SEO strategy for businesses in 2024.

The way people search for information is evolving, and voice search offers a more convenient and natural way for users to interact with technology. It is hands-free, faster, and aligns with the increasing preference for seamless, on-the-go experiences.

What is Voice Search?

Voice search is the spoken language to initiate an online search or command on devices equipped with voice recognition technology. This includes voice-activated devices like smart speakers (e.g. Amazon Echo Dot or Google Nest), virtual assistants on smartphones (e.g. Siri or Alexa), and other internet-connected devices.

The technology behind voice search involves natural language processing (NLP) and machine learning algorithms that enable devices to understand and interpret human speech. It transforms the way users interact with technology, moving away from traditional text-based queries to a more conversational and intuitive approach.

How Can Businesses Optimise for Voice Search?

By implementing voice search optimisation (VSO), businesses can enhance user experience, cater to the preferences of a growing user base, and stay ahead in the digital landscape.
Here are 3 ways you can optimise your marketing content for voice search:

1. Conversational Content Creation:
Businesses should start by tailoring their content to match natural language patterns, answering specific questions concisely. People who interact with voice assistants tend to use natural language, asking questions in a way they would in a conversation. Therefore, content should be designed to mirror this conversational tone. Identify common voice queries related to your industry or business sector and integrate them into your content. Address user inquiries in a clear, concise, and friendly manner, ensuring that your content feels like a helpful dialogue.

2. Local SEO Optimisation:
Voice searches often have a local intent, with users seeking nearby businesses or services. To tap into this trend, prioritise local search optimisation. Ensure that your business information, such as location, contact details, and business hours, is accurate and up-to-date across all online platforms. Claim and optimise your Google My Business listing, as it plays a crucial role in voice search results for local queries. Use geo-targeted keywords in your content, and consider creating content that specifically addresses local needs and preferences.

3. Structured Data Markup for Featured Snippets:
Voice assistants frequently rely on featured snippets to provide quick and direct answers to user queries. Structured data markup can help your content appear as a featured snippet in search results. Marking up relevant information on your website in a structured format helps search engines understand the context and relevance of your content. This increases the likelihood of your content being selected as the voice assistant’s response to a user’s question. Focus on providing concise, informative answers to commonly asked questions within your industry to enhance the chances of being featured in voice search results.


AI will continue to evolve within search

Mariana – Search Engine Marketing Executive


As AI rapidly progresses in 2024, its integration into search technologies will likely lead to more intelligent, intuitive, and personalised search experiences for users. Bing has already integrated AI-powered features into its results pages, and Google is set to roll out its Search Generative Experience update over the coming months.

Google’s SGE update will allow users to explore a topic and ask follow-up questions in a more conversational manner. The results displayed will include content snippets from relevant web pages, images, video and even user-generated content.

Whilst featured snippets have been a big focus in SEO, their future is now uncertain. The beta version of Google’s SGE update indicates that featured snippets have been replaced with Google’s AI-generated results instead. Whether or not this will be the case when it’s officially rolled out remains to be seen.

It may sound like bad news, but it also presents an opportunity for lower-ranked web pages to be featured as part of the AI-generated results, if that web page has the most useful content for the query. This puts further emphasis on creating high-quality, helpful content.

2024 will also continue to see a shift in how people search. With the increase in people using voice search, analytics tools are adapting to track and analyse voice queries. This shift is a big deal for SEO strategies, especially when it comes to how businesses tweak their content to match the way we naturally talk and ask questions.

Visual searches will also continue to be popular. With this trend, it’s expected that SEOs will continue to refine their approach to include more visual content, including both images and videos.

While AI brings valuable advantages to SEO, the human touch remains essential for strategic planning, creating compelling content, and managing SEO overall. It’s crucial to remember that while AI plays a pivotal role in the evolution of SEO, human expertise ensures a thoughtful and strategic approach, maximising the effectiveness of these advanced tools.

Short-form video will dominate, encouraging a rise in micro-learning

Brandon – Head of B2B Marketing


In 2024, two significant trends are poised to dominate strategies: the surge in short-form video content and the growing demand for micro-learning opportunities.

According to the 2024 LOCALiQ UK State of Digital Marketing Report, 55.4% of UK businesses are keen on harnessing the power of short-form video content in their marketing strategies. This statistic signals a fundamental shift in customers desiring concise video formats made popular by TikTok, Instagram Reels, and YouTube Shorts.

In addition, the report revealed 62.2% of businesses expressed a desire to partner with digital marketing providers offering comprehensive training resources for enhanced self-reliance. This trend extends beyond the marketing industry, reflecting a universal appetite among consumers to glean insights and knowledge directly from brands regarding products and subjects related to their purchases.

Incorporating short-form video content and micro-learning opportunities into your business’ marketing strategy is important. Brands can leverage short-form videos to capitalise on their captivating nature to convey key messages succinctly and creatively. Crafting engaging, informative videos that deliver value and resonate with the target audience’s preferences can significantly amplify brand visibility and engagement.

At the same time, investing in micro-learning strategies allow businesses to cater to the evolving consumer thirst for knowledge. By offering easily accessible and educational content, whether through webinars, explainer videos, or interactive modules, brands can establish themselves as trusted authorities while nurturing long-term relationships with consumers invested in continuous learning and engagement.


A new era of content creation (Authenticity will still trump AI)

Leah – Senior Marketing Executive


In 2023 almost half of businesses that were using AI said they were using it for content creation. This number is likely to increase throughout 2024, as businesses start to explore generating new content formats through AI.

AI can generate images, design assets and develop written content in minutes – tasks that previously took skilled individuals hours or even days to complete can now be finished before lunchtime. The upside of this is that it gives businesses much more scope to pivot their strategies and try new things at a faster pace, but there are also several setbacks associated with the adoption of AI too.


Using AI to create written content:
Whilst ChatGPT is old news to many, at the time it looked set to revolutionise the way businesses could create copy. However as marketers got to grips with it, it became clear that we were a long way off from being able to solely rely on it for content creation. Familiar-sounding results were being generated from business to business. It only takes a 10-minute scroll on LinkedIn to start uncovering familiar phrases and the same overused emojis. What ChatGPT has in speed, it lacks in originality.

The questions around ChatGPT and originality have only intensified over the past couple of months and with The New York Times now taking OpenAI to court for alleged plagiarism, it’s hard to see a future where protective laws aren’t put into place around the use of AI.

There are also questions about whether or not businesses should clearly signify that a piece of content has been created with AI, and whether or not using AI-generated content on your website can have a negative effect on your search rankings. Whilst it’s been reported that Google does not penalise websites that use AI-generated content, it will penalise low-quality, generic content.

So does that mean we should abandon chatbots and writing assistants completely? Absolutely not, just that whilst they’re still in their infancy, there are smarter ways to utilise them. Ultimately, it’s about acknowledging that human intervention will still be required; it’s human experience and expertise that will help businesses define themselves as authoritative, trusted sources. Writing tools can also make great research assistants. You can use them to explore a topic, sense-check your understanding of said topic and generate ideas for key talking points. They’re just a long way off being able to complete written work on their own, especially if your business has particular rules around tone of voice.


Using AI to create visual content:
As previously mentioned, AI can also be used to create and enhance image and video content too.

Not only can AI generate realistic or cartoon-style images, but it can also be utilised to design logos, generate graphics, and create illustrations. Adobe is constantly releasing features as part of its Creative Suite, with functions like ‘generative fill’ giving businesses more flexibility and creativity when it comes to product photography or mock-ups. It’s Creative Cloud Express platform allows businesses to generate assets for social media in minutes (and will even take brand colours into account).

When it comes to video content, AI can provide video summarisation where algorithms analyse and condense lengthy videos. AI-powered tools can also be used to complete tasks such as colour correction and stabilisation.

Additionally, AI can also help with automatic captioning, description generation, and noise reduction, contributing to improved accessibility and overall video quality.

Much like written content generated by AI, the results can vary in quality and will still require human involvement. However, they do open up new formats to businesses, as well as speeding up processes and allowing for a greater level of creativity overall.



Businesses will need to access and track data more cleanly

Paul – CRM Manager

Data privacy will continue to be a hot topic in 2024 and access to first-party data will be more important than ever.

According to our 2024 State of Digital Marketing Report “accessing ad using customer data from various sources” ranked #1 for top challenges marketers are faced with. Suggesting there’s a need for businesses to hone their processes and simplify their approach to capturing data.

Businesses will often have so many data sources that knowing what to track becomes overwhelming. Here are our top tips for businesses to ensure they’re tracking data efficiently.

If you have a CRM, you can track and log the data using the top 3 points below. If you don’t have a CRM and don’t currently track the data, you can start by using a spreadsheet.

Top 3 data points to track and measure:

1. Where new contacts & visitors are coming from.

Why should I track this? To understand which campaigns are attracting people to your website.

How can I track this?
a) channel (e.g., paid, organic, social, direct, etc)

b) webpage URL & type of webpage (e.g., blog, landing page, resource, etc)

Where can I access the data?
Google Analytics, CRM, Search Console, Spreadsheets


2. Where sales leads are coming from.

Why should I track this? To understand which campaigns are converting people from visitors to potential sales leads. A sales lead is defined as someone who has actively shown an interest in wanting to speak to sales (e.g., filled out a contact us form, made an enquiry via a phone call).

How can I track this?
a) channel (e.g paid, organic, social, direct, etc)
b) webpage url & type of webpage (e.g., blog, landing page, resource, etc)

Where can I access the data?
Google Analytics, UTMs, CRM, Search Console, Spreadsheets


3. Where revenue is coming from.

Why should I track this?
To understand which campaigns are driving revenue, by first attracting people to the website & then converting them into sales leads.

How can I track this?
By tracking where new contacts/visitors come from (point 1)
By tracking where sales leads are coming from (point 2)
Total marketing-attributed revenue

Where can I access the data?
Google Analytics, UTMs, CRM, Search Console, Spreadsheets
For revenue: CRMs, UTMs, Spreadsheets, Accounting/book-keeping software.

LOCALiQ FREE Paid Search Benchmark Report

State of Digital Marketing Report 2024

Exclusive insights and data from the marketing strategies of over 500+ UK business

Want to stay ahead of the trends in 2024? Get in touch to find out how our team of digital marketing experts can build campaigns that will make this your best year yet!

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