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In US stores, sales and footfall were down 10%, according to ShopperTrak; in the UK, we saw footage of empty stores on the morning of Black Friday.
Yep, there seemed to be something different about Black Friday this year, with retailers increasingly embracing ecommerce.
A change in retailer strategy was well documented. Longer sales, more considered discounts, more discounts available online (and earlier); all these changes herald the beginning of what is now a shopping season, not a one-off event before Christmas.
Let's look at how have retailer strategy might have correlated with consumer transactions and traffic online.
I've taken every Econsultancy blog post title from 2014 and 2015 and created word clouds with them.
This is a very unscientific experiment, but not necessarily a meaningless one. Either way, it was fun.
Though the resulting pictures may reveal more about the Econsultancy writers than the state of the industry, there are a few points of interest.
More than a third (40%) of businesses believe that recruiting staff with suitable skills is a significant barrier to digital progress, making it a bigger problem than 'legacy systems and processes'.
This finding comes from Econsultancy's latest research into organisational structures and digital leadership, entitled Effective Leadership in the Digital Age.
The survey of more than 400 senior staff looks at what makes a good leader and a good culture within a digital business.
Unless you're a reactionary, as a marketer you probably understand that automation is creating more jobs than it makes redundant.
Automation, for all the scale it enables, requires human mastery of technology, process flows and customer lifecycles.
Increasingly personal communications also entail the creation of more content, to suit each segment and event you identify.
RS Components is an ecommerce behemoth.
The B2B distributor of electronic components works at such scale that it provides a fantastic case study for conversion and user experience improvement.
Awarded a Masters of Marketing gong for its customer-centric transformation, let's take a long and detailed look at what this remarkable work entailed and how success was measured.
2015 has seen retailers continue to evolve their Black Friday strategies, with many spreading sales across the period.
UK retailers, in particular, have learnt from last year's bumper day (a breakthrough for the holiday in the UK) and either dropped out from the race or tried to spread demand.
Let's have a look at the strategies being adopted by a number of major retailers.
Product pages can differ wildly.
With Argos sitting somewhere in the middle, and currently in the spotlight during its extended Black Friday sales, I thought I would take a look at its product pages, to see which features I like.
Here are eight of them.
"Oh, he lives in a house, a very big house in the country."
Join me in song as I celebrate one of the most beloved institutions in the UK and the launch of its new website.
Yes, it's the National Trust for Places of Historic Interest or Natural Beauty, or simply National Trust for short.
Dear *|FNAME|*, the rationale for this article is that personality is more important than ever in marketing.
Here are four (100B) reasons that automation necessitates a creative fightback.
What's in a name? HR by any other name would still send poorly formatted emails.
Sorry, that was a cheap shot. But seriously, language is a very powerful agent for organisational change.
Read the fantastic story of Travelex's digital transformation and you'll know one of the many principles championed by Sean Cornwell was to 'talk about speed, agile, failure, new capabiltiies, ways of working and collaboration like it's going out of fashion.'
Can the mere naming of a Chief People Officer (CPO) be a totemic act? How have organisations rejigged their HR departments and why?
There's a mantra that all email marketers should chant.
In shortened form (my favourite), it's simply 'Who cares?'. The longer form is 'What does this email do for my customer?'
You see, metrics such as click-to-open rate can mislead marketers - it's not simply a game of shepherding the reader on to your website. A/B testing can only tell you so much.