Trend Report: The State of Digital Transformation in 2021 & 2022

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Digital transformation. It’s been a B2B and B2C buzzword for years. But what do chief marketing officers (CMOs) think about the state of digital transformation over the past two years?

The COVID-19 pandemic and the global availability of high-speed internet has sparked unprecedented interest in digital transformation. According to Forrester, only 15% of companies prioritized digital transformation prior to 2020. But in 2021, Forrester predicts that every company will move technology into every part of their business . SEO expert, Stephan Bajaio, see's digital transformation as going even beyond that surface-level definition, and he expects it to be a driver for improved lead generation. Having access to this data is what will determine which clients have high needs and which ones are potentially high-value

To reveal what’s top-of-mind for CMOs and other C-suite executives, we examined search data and keyword trends from Conductor Explorer and Google Trends mostly gathered in 2021. We also updated the research to include 2022 forcasted data. Read on to learn more about how businesses are approaching digital transformation today and how topics like website migration, SEO, page speed, and web redesign figure into the equation.

Digital transformation search interest reaches an all-time high

We found that the topic of “digital transformation” has been back on an upward trend since the beginning of 2022. This past May and June showed new surges in search demand.

Search trends for digital transformation line chart

Four of the top five trending searches are informational in nature, showing that CMOs and other business leaders want to know more about specific transformation strategies and examples. There’s also a thirst for industry-specific insights in areas such as healthcare, information technology, and human resources.

Top Trending Digital Transformation Searches

CMOs keep Customer Experience top-of-mind

Dovetailing off research we revealed in our recent B2B SaaS Industry Trends & Leaders in 2021 report, CMOs view digital transformation through the lens of improving the customer experience (CX).

Search volume data shows many companies seek online marketing solutions that can help solve all their marketing challenges at once and boost CX. Other businesses seek specific agencies and solutions for items like content marketing or social media.

Top Digital Marketing Solutions Attracting Interest Bar Chart

What role does SEO play in digital transformation?

Companies looking into SEO solutions are searching for ways to increase keyword rankings. Successful website migration can set a solid foundation for SEO.

General SEO searches are seeing an average 20% increase since last year (data pulled in 2022). As it’s clear from the graph below, demand for SEO has been on an upward trend for years now and is here to stay. Demand for “SEO company” has doubled in less than a year, which can be due to organizations growing their digital marketing budgets.

Demand for SEO related searches bar chart

What is website migration?

Website migration is any event that significantly alters or revamps your website in areas that substantially affects its search engine visibility. Learn more about it in our website migration hub and resource center .

How does website migration fit into digital transformation?

As companies evaluate their web performance, they’re exploring how website migration might help them improve their online presence post-pandemic. We’ve witnessed consistent 30% growth in search volume for website migration over the past four years. That upward trend continued with a 4% increase in website migration search volume from March 2020 – May 2021.

The most recent peaks came in January 2020 and then again in January 2021, which signals the start of the yearly budget planning cycle for many companies. We expect to see a similar increase in late 2021.

Increase in Web Migration (YoY) bar chart.

Which website migration keywords stood out in 2021?

Website migration keyword trends show that CMOs and business executives want to learn more about the processes and plans for migrating from one web host to another. Amazon Web Services and GoDaddy had the largest increase in search demand for domain transfers to another account since March 2020.

Website Migration Search Increases

Which SEO agency, consulting, and hiring keywords stood out in 2021?

A look at keyword trends shows a particular need for SEO services and support, with searches for “SEO expert services” increasing by 550% since March 2020. In focusing only on hiring-related terms from the Digital Marketing Job Trends analysis, we see a positive trend, with an increase of more than 7% from 2019 to 2020.

SEO Agency, Consulting and Hiring Searches

Which page speed keywords stood out in 2021?

Searches for checking the status of a page’s site speed have increased across the board since March 2020. Trends show a whopping 1600% increase in searches for “best website speed test tools.” Branded searches show that companies want tools to learn which specific website pages need load speed improvements.

Page Speed Searches

Organizations are focusing on their website user experience in 2022

Website user experience was voted a top priority for marketing channel owners in Conductor’s State of Organic Marketing 2022 report. This continues to be validated as searches like”website redesign” and “website migration” are seeing a 50% growth in demand since last year.

Search Demand for "website redesign" is trending. Bar chart.

Searches relating to user and customer experience are seeing increases averaging 64% since last year, indicating a rising demand for such services. These topics will continue to be a bright spot in the upcoming years, and keeping the mobile experience top of mind is essential. 

Download our full Trend Report to the right. Inside, we’ll reveal trends in overall search volume for website migration, SEO, page speed, and web redesign and development. You’ll also get additional keyword insights and analysis. Use the information to jumpstart your organization’s digital transformation today.

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