This week’s digital marketing roundup includes news about online search, Snapchat use, ad spend and brand loyalty.

If you want even more statistical goodness, you can also download the Internet Statistics Compendium for further insight.

On we go…

73% of retailers fear cybercrime will negatively impact them in 2017

According to new research from Mimecast, retailers are hyper-aware of cyber-crime, with 73% believing that an attack will negatively impact their business in the year ahead.

65% also believe a malicious email is the most likely way they’ll be infected by ransomware, making retail the most fearful industry overall.

This news comes on the back of Mimecast’s security risk report which – from analysis of 26m emails – found 3.5m pieces of spam and 6,681 dangerous files.

Lingerie more popular than chocolate this Valentine’s Day

Criteo has revealed the most-searched for items this Valentine’s Day. Coming in at number one was ‘earrings’, followed by ‘men’s watches’ and ‘engagement ring’.

Interestingly, searches for lingerie increased a massive 366% in the lead up to the day itself, somewhat justifying many online retailer’s heavy promotion of the category.

More traditional items were also in demand, with searches for perfume and diamonds up 141% and 130% respectively.

Millennials drive traffic to luxury online retailers

Ahead of London Fashion Week, Hitwise has revealed how a new generation of affluent millennials are increasingly seeking out luxury brands.

According to data, 50% of website traffic to Louis Vuitton, Burberry and Gucci is driven by this demographic. Consequently, brands are expected to continue investing in digital efforts to engage with them.

Overall, there has been a 45% increase in website traffic to luxury fashion retailers over the past three years.

66% of marketers struggle to understand their audience

In the wake of Brexit and the US Presidential election, two-thirds of digital marketers are now questioning whether they truly know their audience.

This is according to a new survey from Greenlight, which also found that, as a result, 94% now intend to better understand what their customers are looking for.

37% plan to target subsets of their audience to ensure their brand is tapping into the conversations that suit their business. Typically, 57% rely on customer surveys and 59% use online forms to collect insight.

18-24 year olds dominate Snapchat usage

Data from Verto has revealed that, despite 18-24 year olds accounting for just 35% of Snapchat’s UK users, they account for 70% of the overall time spent on the platform.

In contrast, while 40% of Snapchat’s audience is aged over 35, this age group accounts for just 5% of usage time.

Other data shows that the average user spends 4hrs 22mins on Snapchat a month – a figure down from 5hrs 30mins just six months ago.

However, this is still much lower than Facebook, which has an average user time of 12hrs 43mins per month.

Proflowers.com leads in Valentine’s Day paid search ad spend

Adgooroo has revealed that ahead of the holiday, Proflowers.com generated a 7.3% share of total clicks on Valentine’s Day-related keywords.

This means the site beat out the likes of Hallmark, whose e-card website Hallmarkecards.com generated a 7.1% click share.

There was heavy competition in the greetings cards category, too, with Tinyprints.com generating a 3.4% click share, edging out American Greetings and Blue Mountain, which both saw a share of 2.5%.

26% of marketers feel unprepared for GDPR

New research from the DMA suggests that one in four businesses are still unprepared for the EU General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR), with just over half reporting that they feel prepared, and 5% believing it’s not their responsibility to do anything about it.

It’s not all bad news, however, as awareness of the GDPR has risen from 53% to 66% since June, while marketers’ personal feelings of readiness increased from 49% to 71%.

Despite this, there is still a clear need for urgency, with many marketers not believing their businesses will be compliant before the new rules come into place.

Almost 6m UK households have no savings

A five-year study from Experian has found that people in their 20s and 30s are far less well off than the previous generation, with nearly 1m households having received a loan or financial gift from other family members.

Experian found that almost 6m households in Britain have no savings, with 423,000 Britons relying on unauthorised overdrafts or payday loans to make ends meet.

Lastly, the report also highlights how over 35m people in Britain may be paying more than they should for inappropriate financial products and utility plans, with most failing to switch to a better deal.

66% of marketers no longer use mobile apps in campaigns

The State of Digital Commerce report by Episerver has revealed that two-thirds of marketing professionals are no longer using mobile apps in their marketing campaigns, choosing a responsive mobile presence instead.

The report also states that 32% of top retailers do not provide a mobile application across either iPhone or Android devices, and eight out of 10 top UK retailers have adopted a responsive ecommerce site.

The shift is said to be due to the surge in mobile search as well as the introduction of Google’s Accelerated Mobile Pages.

Changing attitudes to brand loyalty

The new Accenture Strategy report has highlighted how consumers’ allegiances towards brands are frequently changing.

In a survey of the attitudes of 25,426 consumers, Accenture found that 54% of US consumers have switched a provider in the past year, while 18% report that their own expectations about brand loyalty have changed.

Alongside personalisation, greater loyalty could be driven by an experiential approach – with 44% saying they are loyal to a brand that encourages the design or co-creation of products or services.

Lastly, 42% of US respondents are also loyal to brands that their family and friends do business with, while 37% are loyal to brands that actively support shared causes, such as charities or public campaigns.