I’ve been keeping a close eye on innovation in the ecommerce sector for more than a decade now, and it seems to me that we're living in exciting times. We have hit some kind of purple patch.
Why is this? Well, ecommerce has massively matured. It's big business. Digital teams are smarter, and more agile. Sexy new tech such as HTML5, CSS3 and jQuery allow for sublime user experiences.
As such I wanted to raise a toast to innovation by highlighting a bunch of - hopefully inspiring - examples to you.
But first, a massive caveat: I would severely and mercilessly beat a few of these sites with a big best practice stick. There are product pages with missing information. There are search boxes with tiny fonts. There are usability issues galore.
Secondly, for ecommerce sites, it is all about the data. If you’re not constantly testing, measuring and refining, then you aren’t doing it right. What works for one brand might not work so well for another.
All of that aside, the ecommerce teams that take chances and push the boundaries of are to be applauded. Guidelines are precisely that: guidelines. Rules are there to be broken. And innovation is always to be encouraged, even when it doesn’t work out.
So let's take a look at some ecommerce websites (and one mobile app) that are trying new things, and that are noteworthy for their approach to the user experience. Click on the screenshots to check them out for yourself, and do let me know what you think.
This is the sixth in a series of posts discussing how to set up and run a WordPress blog from a relatively experienced expert, which will feature many helpful and hopefully relevant tangents.
This week, I'll help your new blog become more visible to search engines, by investigating the world of search engine optimisation (SEO) and offering some best practice tips.
Paid search is a vital part of the marketer's arsenal, but effective PPC requires time and effort.
Here are my 10 AdWords commandments. What are yours?
Social media is still growing rapidly. I’m pointing out the obvious here but social networks are a dynamic medium for entertainment and interaction, including content discovery and product recommendation.
As such, the auto industry seems almost uniquely suited to social.
While most consumers buy cars infrequently, their interest in them (based on price tag, necessity and if you indulge me, the embodiment of the American dream) often transcends the purchase event.
As such, social analytics has cause to mature in the automotive industry, where it surely stands to play a part in the sales funnel other than simply branding.
I’ve been reading a nice little CMO Council report on social analytics in the auto industry. Here are some thoughts on integrating social into automotive sales.
At Econsultancy we’ve discussed several times what the elements of digital culture are and why it’s good for business.
But we’ve never really covered what is really horrendous, quite possibly because we do like to focus on the positive whenever we can.
Today, I’m going to focus on the signs that show your organisation is desperately behind the times, because unfortunately such issues are rife in many corporate environments today.
If your organisation has any of the below, chances are they are irritating people beyond all comprehension, getting in the way of work and have no genuine utility behind them.
Banish these things immediately, or make a quick buck by shorting the share price of the offending institution.
Read below. I accept no responsibility for any migraines you suffer…
NatWest, Bupa and Hiscox have been rated as offering the best mobile user-experience among the UK’s financial institutions.
The IAB study found that around a quarter of the top spending 50 UK finance brands still don’t have a mobile presence, so competition to find the best UX wasn’t all that tough.
However there were also some positives to take from the survey. I’m not a huge fan of using percentages when there are only 50 brands included, however the report shows that 22% of those surveyed had a responsive site compared to just 2% of retail and 4% of travel companies.
Furthermore, 70% of the banks that were analysed as part of the survey had a mobile app, with the most common functions being a cash point locator and a money transfer tool.
Recently, we ran our first roundtable session of the year in Singapore with 25 marketing professionals engaged in a candid discussion on content marketing.
These sessions are of a much smaller scale in comparison to our annual Digital Cream events, but it’s something we will occasionally be running throughout the year.
It's an initiative to keep our communities and like-minded peers a little more connected, united and close knitted when it comes to exchanging experiences, sharing of insights, benchmarking with others, etc.
Mobile penetration varies hugely among APAC nations, however in developed countries such as Hong Kong and Singapore more than three-quarters of the population own a smartphone.
In response to this consumer trend APAC marketers have to place greater emphasis on mobile, which has resulted in some extremely creative campaigns.
Having previously investigated stats on m-commerce from the region, here are eight excellent examples of mobile marketing campaigns from APAC.
Search advertising has come to dominate performance marketing over the last decade, with advertisers seeing amazing returns from targeting messages at consumers based on their intent.
If a consumer is searching for ‘best golf clubs’ it’s a pretty safe assumption that they’re in purchasing mode and likely to be interested in an advert promoting golf clubs.
But, any search marketer will tell you that one of its weaknesses is that you have to use a degree of guesswork when it comes to audience characteristics.
In the example above, if you knew the consumer was a female then your advertising creative would be far more powerful if it promoted just clubs for ladies. The trouble with search is that unless someone is very specific in their search term, you’re forced to make assumptions.
We are all sharing more data than ever before with other organisations in our emerging Big Data Society. Sharing lets us use our resources much more precisely and produce completely new services.
But misusing customer data risks destroying customer trust. Still, we all need that missing piece of the Big Data puzzle, so we all need to share more.