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A Round-Up of What’s Been Happening in the Digital Marketing World in May and June

My Round-Up of What’s Been Happening in the Digital Marketing World in May was rather scuppered by Google’s 24th May announcements of the biggest changes to AdWords since its inception.

So, as I devoted my entire end of May blog purely to this massive news, here’s a round-up of what else has been going on in May and June.

Better prices drive shoppers online, doh?

According to the GfK FutureBuy survey, better prices and deals is the main factor in customers buying online rather than in physical stores.

The most important online drivers are here:-

The most important factors driving online purchases

The most important factors driving online purchases

 

Whilst the, strangely similar, in-store factors are here:-

The most important factors driving instore purchases

The most important factors driving instore purchases

It would be interesting to see the demographic of this survey, as, according to this BBC story, younger consumers tend to prefer shopping online as they can order a number of items and return those that they don’t like, which they might not do if they were buying in a physical shop.

Another factor, not considered in this survey, is social interaction – how many people actually shop in-store because they want to talk to people and interact and how many people choose to shop online because they don’t want to talk to people and interact. My, admittedly, non-scientific Empirical evidence, based on observations of people choosing between self-service checkouts and operated checkouts at supermarkets, would suggest this is quite a factor.

Consumer Conversions Increase on Mobile

A report from Marin Software highlighted some interesting observations on how consumers are now using mobile. Here are the main highlights:-

  • Search conversions on smartphones increased 10% year-on-year.
  • Display conversions have grown 26%, clicks are up 13% and impressions have increased by 10% on smartphones.
  • Social conversions will be 50% mobile by the end of the year.

So, with shopping on smartphones becoming increasingly the norm, investment in mobile-optimisation is certain to increase in both 2016 and 2017.

BBC Food off the Menu

The BBC announced that the BBC Food recipe website, a virtual right arm to many an aspiring cook, reluctant chef, hungry student, and me, is to close, meaning more than 11,000 online recipes, that we’ve all depended on to keep us from  starvation, will disappear.

How am I going to cook now?

How am I going to cook now?

But Google Shopping Ads Now on the Menu for Images

Google have announced, at long last, that it’s Shopping ads, or product listing ads (PLAs), are set to appear within Google image searches.

New Shopping Image Ads and how they appear in Image Search

New Shopping Image Ads and how they appear in Image Search

Now, whilst you’re looking at images of nice things and stuff you’d like, Google will show you how much they might cost and where you can buy them from. Read More here.

60% of Customers Abandon Baskets due to Slow Delivery

A survey by US Courier Dropoff has discovered that customers are abandoning online baskets because their expectations for delivery are not being met. With the continuing success of Amazon Prime and Walmart’s announcements of its ShippingPass the future looks to be all about fast, free delivery.

6% of People say that their Mobile Phone has Replaced their Wallet

Nationwide Building Society has revealed research that suggests that the mobile phone is becoming the primary method for undertaking a range of activities.

It also suggests that 99% of Britons would return home if they had forgotten to pick up their mobile. The other 1% would ask someone to go get it for them, presumably?

29% of people surveyed said their mobile had already replaced their watch, 22% said it had replaced their diary, 14% said it had replaced their home computer and 46% said their smartphone had replaced their partner and best friend…. well, actually I just made that last bit up – I’m not sure about the percentage.

Twitter Finally Loosens Up

Social network, Twitter,  confirmed the widely reported rumours that it was loosening its 140-character limit, changing how brands and users will construct tweets when the changes roll out in the coming weeks.

Essentially, the changes mean…

  • Media attachments and @reply usernames will no longer count toward the 140-character limit.
  • Users will be able to retweet themselves.
  • Tweets that begin with an @ will be sent to all of your followers, not just the designated user (no more need to add a period before!).

Opportunities for Retailers to Win Back Shoppers

Research from Connexity has revealed that 53% of shoppers who abandon baskets at the checkout tend to return at a later date.

For those aged 18 to 35, the main reason for abandonment is said to be high cost. However, the biggest reason cited overall is a lack of reassurance that the product will meet the consumer’s needs.With brand loyalty higher than expected, it’s good news for retailers trying to win back lost customers.

Should I Stay or Should I Go Now?

Vote Leave beating Stronger In for Website Visits

Website stats company SimilarWeb has revealed that VoteLeaveTakecontrol.org (the Pro-Leave Campaign site) has seen 373,000 visits to its website from the UK in the last 4 weeks, whilst only 185,000 visited the Pro-EU Strongerin.co.uk website.

If I Go There Will Be Trouble

60% of British retailers Unprepared Brexit

Ahead of June’s referendum, research has found that three in five retail decision-makers have made no plans should a Brexit go ahead. The results from a survey of 250 people shows that small to medium-sized retailers are the most prepared – and also the group most in favour of leaving the EU.

Interestingly, 54% of retailers with 100-249 employees said they plan to vote to leave, compared with just 24% of people from retailers with more than 500 employees.

An’ if I Stay it Will Be Double

Top 10 EU Referendum Searches

On a similar vein, competitive intelligence company Hitwise studied the online behaviour of 3m Britons, across the four weeks ending May 28, 2016.

The results show top keywords included in searches for relevant referendum terms.

Top keywords included in searches for 'EU Referendum' and 'Brexit'

Top keywords included in searches for ‘EU Referendum’ and ‘Brexit’

Top keywords included in searches for ‘EU Leave’ and ‘EU Stay’

Top keywords included in searches for 'EU Leave' and 'EU Stay'

Top keywords included in searches for ‘EU Leave’ and ‘EU Stay’

Snapchat Reveals 10m Active Daily UK Users and Wimbledon Deal

If you are over the age of 25, don’t have any children or are blissfully unaware of what’s going down currently, Snapchat is a mobile messaging application that is used to share photos, videos, text, and drawings which then “self-destruct” in 10 seconds. It was first introduced at the end of 2011 and it’s owners, Evan Spiegel and Bobby Murphy, famously turned down a £1.8 billion ($3 billion) offer from Facebook just 3 years later. Snapchat confirmed on May 31 that it now has nearly 10 million active daily UK users, which, according to my calculations, is about two thirds of the entire UK population aged between 5 and 25. This would suggest that either it is hugely popular or there are quite a few people, over the age of 25, who also use it.

To enhance its growing maturity, Snapchat has signed a deal to share live moments from Wimbledon, including user footage from the finals. As part of the deal, it will also sell ad spots to Wimbledon’s sponsors, which include Stella Artois and Häagen-Dazs.

Another Update to the Google Shopping Products Feed Specification

In it’s latest 2016 update to Google Shopping Products Feed Specification, Google announced further tightening up of enforcement of existing rules, e.g. ensuring Colour’ and ‘size’ attributes are present in relevant items, and that you include statutory GTIN, MPN or Brand in the feed, together with a bigger minimum image size. Expect more disapproved items, if you’re not on the ball.

LinkedIn Cashed Out

Microsoft announces it’s going to buy LinkedIn for $26bn (£18bn)

Following hot on the heels of it’s success in buying Nokia and Skype, Microsoft announced it would now be using its cash mountain to buy professional networking site LinkedIn.

Not to be put off by the obvious issues with its previous acquisitions, it’s own ventures into Social Networking (remember So.cl) and ignoring any similarity with NewsCorp’s purchase of MySpace, Microsoft did point to the success of its first purchase, PowerPoint in 1987. What could possibly go wrong?

Well, that’s all for now folks, see you next month for another exciting round-up of news from the digital marketing world!

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