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Eagle-eyed Econsultancy readers will notice that we’ve published a number of end-of-year roundups recently.
For each of these posts we asked a panel of experts for their views, and while I had their attention I slipped in a few extra questions.
Direct Line redesigned its website last year, putting a larger focus on the rapidly growing number of mobile users wishing to access traditionally difficult to obtain information.
Just a few years ago the idea of obtaining a home or car insurance quote on the mobile web seemed at best a pipe-dream, at worst a massive hassle not worth attempting.
Fortnum & Mason is the luxury department store residing at the heart of Piccadilly since 1707.
This week, the 300 year-old retailer has launched a brand new responsive website, where it claims to provide the same level of customer service as it does in-store.
Continuing our series looking at the customer journey from search to checkout, here we’ll be concentrating on the vehicle hire industry.
However as Google is changing its algorithm to rank mobile friendly sites higher than non-mobile friendly sites, let’s take a look at the journey from a mobile point of view.
In the early days of ecommerce customer acquisition and retention largely focused on selling products at the lowest possible price.
Now businesses have accepted they can’t win a price war with Amazon they’ve turned their attention to providing the best possible customer experience as a means of differentiating from the competition.
You will no doubt notice that we have a new site design. It’s a completely refreshed and fully responsive experience that should hopefully put the user first.
It’s also a work in progress.
More than half (52%) of 18-34 year-olds have clicked through to a website from a mobile email, so it’s therefore imperative for email marketers to ensure their communications are suitably optimised for all mobile devices.
This stat comes from all the way back in 2012. Since then different studies by different companies have revealed similar numbers: 68% of people use their mobiles for email; 41% of emails are opened on mobile devices; the latest study I could find is by Litmus revealing that in 2013 48% of all emails were opened on mobile.
So how do marketers manage this progressively more popular channel effectively?
I’ll be taking a look at our recent report Bridging the Gap in Email Marketing, written by Morag Cuddeford-Jones, in which interviews were conducted with digital marketing professionals across a range of businesses, exploring the challenges and opportunities for marketers who are committed to taking their use of email to the next level.
Based on the marketing emails that I receive on a daily basis I am going to leap to the assumption that not many brands are optimising their messages for mobile.
I’m still expected to do an awful lot of pinching and zooming if I want to browse the new offers from Reiss or ASOS, for example.
Data from Econsultancy’s Email Marketing Census 2014 shows that just under half (47%) of businesses are optimising emails for mobile devices, while a third (34%) have it in the works and 19% have no plans in this area.
But even if optimising email content is still a pipe dream for many marketers, brands can at least begin writing subject lines with mobile users in mind.
Happy Record Store Day everybody! It's my second favourite day of the year.
A day where I wake up at 4am to join the masses of other record collectors in the cold dawn with a bacon sandwich and thermos of tea in hand, to queue up for this year's limited batch of releases only available to independent record shops.
Record Store Day is an annual event designed to keep the physical record industry afloat, in particular the smaller labels, bands and independent stores that still hold vinyl close to their hearts.
Of course, this idea of vinyl being a ‘quaint affectation’ is far from the reality. British Phonographic Industry (BPI) revealed earlier in the year that vinyl sales are the highest they’ve been for 15 years. More than 780,000 vinyl albums were sold in 2013, this is a 101% increase on 2012 sales.
Major labels are getting in on the racket too. Titles this year include releases from One Direction and Katy Perry. Now you can be as sniffy as you like about these but I can't say the first singles I bought were any better and if it gets a new generation into record stores than that's all for the greater good as far as I’m concerned.
A few months I signed up to newsletters from a number of different fashion retailers in order to evaluate their welcome emails.
This means I now have an inbox full of marketing messages, which feature a surprisingly high proportion of deals and special offers.
What’s even more surprising is the lack of mobile optimisation among these brands.
The full list includes some of the world’s top online retailers, such as Macy’s, H&M, ASOS, Boohoo, Rue La La, House of Fraser, Schuh, Nordstrom, Mr Porter, American Apparel, Reiss and Office.
Yet of all of these, only four brands had any success in rendering emails properly on my Android phone.
Yesterday I wrote a blog looking at the different ways in which fashion retailers handled the process of capturing customer data when they signup to email alerts.
It turns out that the procedure varies quite drastically between sites, with some businesses requiring just your email while others need to know a great deal of personal information.
A day later and the welcome emails have arrived, however not all of the brands could be bothered to roll out the red carpet.
Though I signed up to 16 email newsletters only 11 welcome emails arrived, with ASOS, Schuh, Miss Selfridge, Boohoo and Office failing to get in touch.
With the explosion of mobile devices in recent years, your email campaign could be opened at any time and in a much wider variety of locations and situations than a few years ago, when practically all emails were checked on a desktop computer.
So what are some of the most popular locations that your emails could be opened? And are your subscribers likely to convert from your email when they are in that location?