tag:econsultancy.com,2008:/topics/ecommerce Latest Ecommerce content from Econsultancy 2016-07-29T15:40:31+01:00 tag:econsultancy.com,2008:BlogPost/68117 2016-07-29T15:40:31+01:00 2016-07-29T15:40:31+01:00 Wells Fargo turns to Amazon as a marketing channel Patricio Robles <p>Case in point: last week, Amazon and Wells Fargo <a href="https://www.wellsfargo.com/about/press/2016/amazon-student-offering_0721/">announced</a> a partnership that will allow members of Amazon Prime Student to receive an interest rate discount on private student loans.</p> <p>Amazon Prime Student is a version of Amazon Prime for students that was launched in 2010. It gives students access to the benefits of Prime at a reduced cost of $49/year, half the price of a regular Amazon Prime membership (and Amazon offers a six-month free trial).</p> <p>Through the relationship with Wells Fargo, Amazon Prime Student members who apply for and receive, or cosign for, a private student loan will receive a 0.50% interest rate discount.</p> <p>They can reduce their interest rate further by setting up automatic monthly payments and taking advantage of any Wells Fargo global promotions they're eligible for.</p> <p><img src="https://assets.econsultancy.com/images/resized/0007/7477/wf-temp-hero-1500._v284462174_-blog-flyer.jpg" alt="" width="470" height="212"></p> <p>According to John Rasmussen, who heads Wells Fargo's Personal Lending Group, "We are focused on innovation and meeting our customers where they are – and increasingly that is in the digital space."</p> <h3>A sign of things to come?</h3> <p>While affinity and relationship discounts are not new to financial services industry, the Wells Fargo-Amazon partnership is an interesting one for a couple of reasons.</p> <p>First, the market for private student loans is relatively small compared to the overall student loan market. <a href="http://measureone.com/reports">According to</a> the Q1 2016 MeasureOne Private Student Loan Report, private student loans make up well under 10% of total student loans outstanding. The vast majority of student loans are federal.</p> <p>Private student loans don't have the best reputation and are generally more expensive than their government-subsidised counterparts. That makes it a tough market for lenders like Wells Fargo, so if the Amazon Prime Student relationship can help drive loan volume, it could be a real boon to Wells Fargo's private student lending business.</p> <p>Second, Wells Fargo's decision to market its private student loans through Amazon Prime Student offers yet more evidence of the <a href="https://econsultancy.com/blog/67202-what-s-the-future-for-big-banks-in-a-fintech-world">unbundling</a> of financial services.</p> <p>Historically, large banks like Wells Fargo <a href="https://econsultancy.com/blog/67613-what-banks-can-learn-from-mondo-s-record-breaking-1m-crowdfunding-campaign">have used their leverage over customers to be all things to all customers</a>. The internet has changed that, and large financial institutions can't count on their customers to turn to them for all of their needs by default.</p> <p>That's why Wells Fargo is looking for ways to meet customers where they are.</p> <p>While it remains to be seen just how productive the Wells Fargo-Amazon Prime Student relationship will be, don't be surprised to see other players in the financial services market turn to digital channels in a similar fashion going forward as they seek to compete in increasingly competitive markets and deal with consumers who put service and price above loyalty.</p> tag:econsultancy.com,2008:BlogPost/68131 2016-07-29T13:49:13+01:00 2016-07-29T13:49:13+01:00 Top 10 digital marketing stats of the week Nikki Gilliland <p>In the meantime, let’s get on with the show.</p> <h3>90% of people recognise the Twitter brand (but many don't understand the platform)</h3> <p style="font-weight: normal;">Research by Twitter found that though 90% of people globally recognise the brand, many don't understand its myriad uses, and some thought they had to tweet every day to use the platform.</p> <p style="font-weight: normal;">Consequently, the social media juggernaut is set to launch a global marketing campaign to clarify its position and brand values.</p> <p style="font-weight: normal;">Using the tagline, "See what's happening", it will use video and digital ads to promote it as the place to find out what’s going on in the world at any given moment.</p> <blockquote class="twitter-tweet"> <p lang="en" dir="ltr">See what's happening: <a href="https://t.co/ChbWRrSJyK">https://t.co/ChbWRrSJyK</a><a href="https://t.co/r9AZd9rzI3">https://t.co/r9AZd9rzI3</a></p> — Twitter (@twitter) <a href="https://twitter.com/twitter/status/757561453079474178">July 25, 2016</a> </blockquote> <h3>Mobile shoppers left frustrated with online experience</h3> <p>Connexity has revealed the top eight annoyances for mobile shoppers, highlighting that brands need to be smarter about how they display information.</p> <p>33% of consumers cited the need to zoom in, in order to click on the right part of the screen as their top annoyance, closely followed by 25% saying the pages load too slowly.</p> <p>Further findings from the survey of 100,000 consumers:</p> <p><img src="https://assets.econsultancy.com/images/0007/7580/Screen_Shot_2016-07-29_at_12.41.58.png" alt="mobile annoyances" width="500"></p> <h3>One in five shoppers take seven hours to complete an online purchase</h3> <p>When it comes to shopping online, it appears we’re far from impulsive.</p> <p>According to <a href="http://info.monetate.com/EQ1_2016.html" target="_blank">Monetate’s new report</a>, one in five of us take over seven hours to actually buy something.</p> <p>From initial research to returning on multiple devices, the path to purchase is becoming increasingly lengthy.</p> <p>For brands, the key is in making the customer journey seamless across all channels.</p> <h3>Consumers view chatbots as the key to great customer service</h3> <p>Research by myclever agency has discovered how consumers are favouring <a href="https://econsultancy.com/blog/67894-what-are-chatbots-and-why-should-marketers-care/">chatbots </a>for better customer service.</p> <p>In a survey of 1,000, 46% of consumers cited bots as the key-holders to speed, immediacy and convenience. </p> <p>Surprisingly, chatbots were the second-most preferred form of communication, only second to face-to-face conversation.</p> <p>This spells great news for early adopters of the technology who stand to reap the benefits of consumer approval.</p> <p><img src="https://assets.econsultancy.com/images/0007/7568/chatbots.PNG" alt="" width="500" height="524"></p> <h3>One in five PR disasters break on Twitter</h3> <p>According to a new study by Visibrain, 95% of PR disasters begin on Twitter. </p> <p>What’s more, the platform is said to make the situation significantly worse as online trolls add fuel to the flame. </p> <p>Over the course of the last year, 19% of PR blunders occurred on Twitter, making it more influential than the likes of Facebook and YouTube.</p> <h3>SME retailers relying on social media and digital tech to support growth</h3> <p>According to a study by SAP, a growing number of <a href="https://econsultancy.com/blog/66729-why-amazon-can-be-an-important-channel-for-smes/">SME retailers</a> are turning to social media to support business growth.</p> <p>In a survey, all respondents said they were active on at least one social channel, and nearly a third said they were using three or more forms of social media. </p> <p>Likewise, digital technology is now seen as the key to attracting new customers, with better customer experience cited as the biggest benefit.</p> <p><img src="https://assets.econsultancy.com/images/0007/7569/SAP.PNG" alt="" width="500" height="339"></p> <h3>62% of companies lack a formalised digital analytics strategy</h3> <p>Insight from our Measurement and Analytics report has revealed that three-fifths of companies do not have a formalised analytics strategy in place.</p> <p>As a result, it is difficult for marketers to take clear measurements and track whether KPI’s are being met.</p> <p>With a fifth suggesting that this lack of strategy is for digital analytics only, a merged online and offline strategy is seen as the best way to solve the problem.</p> <p><img src="https://assets.econsultancy.com/images/0007/7565/analytics_strategy.PNG" alt="" width="669" height="561"></p> <p>For more insight on this topic, <a href="https://econsultancy.com/reports/measurement-and-analytics-report/?utm_source=Econsultancy&amp;utm_medium=email&amp;utm_campaign=7374660_2380-daily-pulse-uk-2016-07-28&amp;dm_i=LQI,4E2BO,MXU9X5,G4XWT,1" target="_blank">download the full report here</a>.</p> <h3>80% of UK businesses fear they could be displaced within 5 years</h3> <p>A study by Squiz has highlighted the worries of businesses owners in the UK.</p> <p>It found that 49% of UK businesses fear an established competitor is likely to disrupt them. </p> <p>Similarly, 36% cited concerned over a start-up trumping them on new technology.</p> <p>With consumer expectations impacted by digital experiences, it seems slow innovation and lack of skills are at the root of these fears.</p> <h3>Use of mobile wallets on the rise</h3> <p>Mobile wallets are now among the top four ways consumers  stay updated on sales, discounts and offers, says Urban Airship.</p> <p>Apparently, millennials are the biggest fan of this technology, with 60% of the demographic using it compared to 40% of those aged 35-54.</p> <p>Research also found that mobile wallets are key drivers for consumers using coupons in-store as well as signing up to loyalty programmes.</p> <h3>3,000 McDonalds Japan outlets to become Pokemon Gyms</h3> <p>Many businesses are using Nintendo's <a href="https://econsultancy.com/blog/68060-what-brands-can-learn-from-nintendo-s-digital-transformation-and-pokemon-go/">Pokemon Go</a> to drive foot traffic, however McDonalds has just announced that it's the first to officially partner with the brand.</p> <p>3,000 McDonalds outlets in Japan are set to become designated 'Gym' and 'PokeStops'.</p> <p>What's more, the fast food brand will give away Pokemon figurines as part of its Happy Meals.</p> <p>In doing so, McDonalds aims to provide fans with an incentive to visit, as well as counteract recent controversy about <a href="http://www.japantimes.co.jp/news/2016/02/09/business/corporate-business/mcdonalds-japan-suffers-record-annual-net-loss/">food safety issues</a>.</p> <p><img src="https://assets.econsultancy.com/images/0007/7583/mcdonalds.jpg" alt="" width="600" height="399"></p> tag:econsultancy.com,2008:BlogPost/68119 2016-07-28T10:03:00+01:00 2016-07-28T10:03:00+01:00 How Everlane is using an 'exclusive' Instagram account to strengthen customer loyalty Nikki Gilliland <h3>How does it work?</h3> <p>Everlane Studio is a private account that accepts just 100 followers each day.</p> <p>It offers exclusive online content and early access to new releases, allowing customers to get their hands on items before anyone else.</p> <p>Alongside this, the brand uses the platform to gauge consumer responses, testing out new products and using the feedback to determine future decisions.</p> <p><img src="https://assets.econsultancy.com/images/0007/7469/EverlaneStudio.PNG" alt="" width="780" height="617"></p> <h3>What’s the aim?</h3> <p>When followers are accepted into Everlane Studio, they will feel like they are part of an exclusive club or ‘inner circle’ of sorts.</p> <p>By creating bespoke content that is unique to that platform, the brand also promotes a customer-centric image. </p> <p>In doing so, it suggests that it cares about the people that buys its products, but more than that, it implies it cares above and beyond any other brand or rival retailer.</p> <p>The hope is that this will deepen the emotional response of the consumer and ultimately strengthen their loyalty. </p> <blockquote class="twitter-tweet"> <p lang="en" dir="ltr">Our private Instagram account launches on January 25th. Follow EverlaneStudio for a first look at new shoe launches. <a href="https://t.co/aKvUxR7wC1">pic.twitter.com/aKvUxR7wC1</a></p> — Everlane (@Everlane) <a href="https://twitter.com/Everlane/status/689163781516046336">January 18, 2016</a> </blockquote> <h3>Why Instagram?</h3> <p>Instagram is a platform that thrives on exclusivity. </p> <p>Whether people are putting a filter on a Fendi bag or a five-star hotel view, the platform is commonly used as a place for people to show off their wares. </p> <p>Everlane has clearly decided to capitalise on this trend, using the private function of its second account to ramp up its elite feel.</p> <p>What’s more, Instagram is one of the few platforms where consumer feedback can very easily be gauged.</p> <p>Although brands like <a href="http://www.convinceandconvert.com/social-media-case-studies/nars-uses-snapchat-to-release-preview-of-new-collection/" target="_blank">NARS have previously used Snapchat</a> to give fans a sneak peek of new products, with the fast-moving nature of Snapchat, it’s not as easy to gain an overview of the conversation.  </p> <p>Using Instagram to create a community, and by allowing its user-base the opportunity to voice their opinions and even impact decisions, Everlane ensure customers feel even greater loyalty to the brand.</p> <h3>Could it put off new customers?</h3> <p>While EverlaneStudio is a great way to connect with loyal fans, the danger of putting new customers off might be its biggest drawback. </p> <p>As we’ve seen from the likes of <a href="https://econsultancy.com/blog/68058-has-amazon-prime-day-2016-made-up-for-2015-s-primedayfail/" target="_blank">Amazon Prime Day</a>, events geared around membership or some sort of exclusivity have the potential to make new customers feel shut out or like they’re not valued.</p> <p>Luckily, Everlane seem to recognise this fact, using its other social media platforms to cleverly counteract the danger.</p> <p>By giving Snapchat and Twitter just as much focus as Instagram, Everlane does go some way to ensure that each platform has enough unique content to engage all potential customers.</p> <blockquote class="twitter-tweet"> <p lang="en" dir="ltr">Starting out the week feeling fashionable. <a href="https://t.co/wgoCW1SHrF">https://t.co/wgoCW1SHrF</a></p> <p>Thanks <a href="https://twitter.com/WeAreSweet">@WeAreSweet</a>. <a href="https://t.co/4oLigGbRt0">pic.twitter.com/4oLigGbRt0</a></p> — Everlane (@Everlane) <a href="https://twitter.com/Everlane/status/757642824019959808">July 25, 2016</a> </blockquote> <h3>What can other brands learn?</h3> <p>Everlane is not the only company to set up more than one Instagram. </p> <p>With an account specifically dedicated to showcasing shoe launches, NikeLab is another example of a brand using a single social media platform for multiple purposes.</p> <p><img src="https://assets.econsultancy.com/images/0007/7476/nikelab.PNG" alt="" width="780" height="497"></p> <p>Again, while the private function could alienate new or one-off customers, it’s certainly a good example of a brand putting the long-term loyalty of the customer before short-term gain.</p> <p><img src="https://assets.econsultancy.com/images/0007/7475/Everlane.PNG" alt="" width="780" height="730"></p> <p>Building on the success and community-aspect of its original Instagram, Everlane is certainly thinking innovatively about its social media strategy.</p> <p><em>More on Instagram and retail:</em></p> <ul> <li><a href="https://econsultancy.com/blog/67909-selfridges-unveils-ios-app-with-shoppable-instagram-feed-is-it-any-good">Selfridges unveils iOS app with shoppable Instagram feed: Is it any good?</a></li> </ul> tag:econsultancy.com,2008:BlogPost/68112 2016-07-28T03:00:00+01:00 2016-07-28T03:00:00+01:00 Five things you should know about digital Japan Jeff Rajeck <p>..outrageous fashion...</p> <p><img src="https://assets.econsultancy.com/images/resized/0007/7404/fashion-blog-flyer.jpg" alt="" width="470" height="472"></p> <p>(image via <a href="https://www.flickr.com/photos/istolethetv/4735451442/">istolethetv</a>)</p> <p>...a challenging sense of design...</p> <p><img src="https://assets.econsultancy.com/images/resized/0007/7405/anime-blog-flyer.jpg" alt="" width="470" height="353"></p> <p> ...and famously strange TV shows.</p> <p> <img src="https://assets.econsultancy.com/images/resized/0007/7406/bear-blog-flyer.jpg" alt="" width="470" height="307"></p> <p>So what about digital?  In a world where cultures becoming increasingly alike due to digital media, does Japan stand out in any way?</p> <p>Econsultancy's latest publication, <a href="https://econsultancy.com/reports/the-japan-digital-report/">The Japan Digital Report</a>, aims to find out. In the report, we look at Japan's demographics, digital readiness, social media, search engines, and ecommerce sites to get a detailed picture of just where Japan is at, digitally.</p> <p>We found that there are many fascinating aspects of Japan's digital culture.  Here are five things that you should know about first.</p> <h3>1) Japan has its own social network</h3> <p>Any meaningful discussion of digital in Japan has to start with its homegrown social network, LINE.</p> <p>LINE rose to prominence during Japan's 2011 tsunami crisis as many used the network to communicate with loved ones when normal phone communication failed.</p> <p>Since then, however, <strong>LINE has become ubiquitous in Japan</strong> providing its users with chat, voice and video chat, a personal timeline, games, branded<a href="https://assets.econsultancy.com/images/0007/7407/pic-2016-07-25-12-01-24.jpg"> channels, and many more features.</a></p> <p><img src="https://assets.econsultancy.com/images/0007/7407/pic-2016-07-25-12-01-24.jpg" alt="" width="716" height="409"></p> <p>The network still enjoys significant growth quarter-on-quarter and it is commonly said that <strong>anyone in Japan who is 'on social media' is on LINE.</strong></p> <p><img src="https://assets.econsultancy.com/images/resized/0007/7409/pic-2016-07-25-12-05-44-blog-flyer.png" alt="" width="470" height="270"></p> <p>One testament to LINE's popularity is that the company IPO'd in the US and Japan in July 2016 and shares shot up 50% on the first day.</p> <h3>2) Facebook is popular, too, and used for business</h3> <p>Facebook was launched in Japan in 2008, but as of 2011 its reach, 2 million, was still relatively low.</p> <p>The social network also came into its own during the 2011 tsunami. Because Facebook, unlike other social networks, requires real names, <strong>Japanese Facebook users could see that distant friends or colleagues were OK after the disaster without having to ask them directly</strong>.</p> <p>Its popularity soared following the disaster and it has seen consistent growth ever since.</p> <p><img src="https://assets.econsultancy.com/images/0007/7410/facebook.png" alt="" width="640" height="400"></p> <p>Now, <strong>Facebook is used in Japan for business networking as well as social networking.</strong></p> <p>Speculation is that Facebook has taken LinkedIn's place in this regards because it is unusual for the Japanese to post career accomplishments and ambitions as members are encouraged to do on LinkedIn. So, because Facebook has real names, the platform serves as a less obvious way of making and maintaining professional contacts.</p> <h3>3) Yahoo! Japan is still very much alive</h3> <p>As most are aware by now, Yahoo has been sold to Verizon in the US.  The site however, is not wholly owned by Yahoo and <strong>so Yahoo Japan will not be transfered to Verizon after the sale of Yahoo in the US.</strong></p> <p><img src="https://assets.econsultancy.com/images/0007/7411/yahoo.png" alt="" width="800" height="156"></p> <p>Yahoo Japan has built up a strong independent brand and <strong>competes head-on with Google for monthly active users (MAUs)...</strong></p> <p><img src="https://assets.econsultancy.com/images/0007/7412/pic-2016-07-25-12-18-09.png" alt="" width="471" height="280"></p> <p>...and has more ecommerce traffic than any other site in the country.</p> <p><img src="https://assets.econsultancy.com/images/0007/7413/pic-2016-07-25-12-20-37.png" alt="" width="507" height="365"></p> <p>Yahoo Japan also currently enjoys double-digit year-on-year growth in overall monthly active users.</p> <h3>4) Bots are already up and running in Japan</h3> <p>2016 has been a banner year for applications which provide a chat interface to an ecommerce or information service - <a href="https://econsultancy.com/blog/67894-what-are-chatbots-and-why-should-marketers-care/">commonly known as bots.</a>  Most compaines, however, have yet to do anything at all on the various bot platforms and so bots may well end up to be the biggest vapourware story of the year.</p> <p>In Japan, however, <strong>LINE already has a bot plugin for brands</strong>, a test network for developers, and a number of live bots already in use. </p> <p><img src="https://assets.econsultancy.com/images/0007/7414/dominos.png" alt="" width="800" height="262"></p> <p>Domino's Pizza Bot is one example which has taken a reported 100 million yen (around $1 million) in orders already. Those interested in building a LINE bot for Japanese consumers can get started by applying for access (in English) at the <a href="https://partner.line.me/en">LINE partner site</a>.</p> <h3>5) Virtual stickers are what's hot there, though</h3> <p>If you asked a typical LINE user about what was hot on LINE, though, most would say one word - stickers. Virtual stickers are similar to emojis in that they are used to share emotions in an unusual or fun way.</p> <p><img src="https://assets.econsultancy.com/images/0007/7415/stickerw1.png" alt="" width="800" height="200"></p> <p>LINE, however, has capitalized on their popularity on the network and allowed brands to design their own custom stickers (for a considerable fee, of course!)</p> <p><img src="https://assets.econsultancy.com/images/0007/7416/dove2.png" alt="" width="536" height="371"></p> <p>The benefit for brands, though, is that <strong>LINE stickers can both deliver the brand message and help their fans extend the brand message to their friends.</strong></p> <p>LINE stickers also have the added benefits of being short-lived and difficult-to-get outside of a campaign's home country.  This scarcity makes the stickers distribution even more likely by LINE members seeking cultural cachet.</p> <h3>So...</h3> <p>So, why do some Japanese dress outrageously and why do they have some of the world's most 'interesting' TV shows?  We are not entirely sure.</p> <p>We do know, however, that <strong>Japan has a diverse media landscape and many opportunities for brands to reach their audience in the country digitally</strong>. The Japan Report will provide you will the base facts, statistics, and insights you need to start figuring out this fascinating country. </p> <p>If you'd like to know more about Japan, then Econsultancy subscribers can <a href="https://econsultancy.com/reports/the-japan-digital-report/">download the report here</a>.</p> <p>And if you're not a subscriber, then you can <a href="https://econsultancy.com/subscription-plans/">find out more about subscriptions here</a>.</p> tag:econsultancy.com,2008:Report/4207 2016-07-27T21:00:00+01:00 2016-07-27T21:00:00+01:00 The Japan Digital Report <p><strong>The Japan Digital Report</strong> aims to provide background for marketers who are outside of Japan and currently marketing in Japan, thinking of launching a campaign there, or even just curious about the country and its digital landscape.</p> <p>Additionally, the report provides detailed information about marketing on LINE, the most culturally significant digital platform in Japan presently.</p> <p>Through the data, the charts and the commentary, the report will help marketers looking to make a case for investing more in the country and provide a foundation for further research.</p> <h2>Topics covered include:</h2> <ul> <li> <strong>Demographics.</strong> How does Japan compare to the rest of the world?</li> <li> <strong>Digital readiness.</strong> What is the current state of internet and mobile technology in the country?</li> <li> <strong>Digital landscape.</strong> What are the main web, social, search, video and ecommerce sites in the country, and how do they operate?</li> </ul> tag:econsultancy.com,2008:BlogPost/68102 2016-07-27T14:02:00+01:00 2016-07-27T14:02:00+01:00 Why there should be more plaudits for digital audits Chris Bishop <p>Those at the top of organisations don’t feel they have the strategic sweep to justify the time and effort required to commission them.</p> <p>Audits are viewed at times as a little “too tactical” or only done once every blue moon by agencies aiming to impress for your business, only to then collect dust on top of Econsultancy buyers guides print outs or even your old New Media Age magazines (<strong>Ed</strong>: We let this lie, but only to show we have a sense of humour).</p> <p>For the in-house Head of Ecommerce, requesting a digital audit might sound dangerously like a turkey voting for Christmas. </p> <h3>Are we selling audits wrongly?</h3> <p>Or is it the slightly cheesy marketing of website or marketing auditors themselves that is putting people off?</p> <p>All that tired ‘digital health check’ stuff might be the kind of foot in the door tactic that make brands feel suspicious of then giving access to their precious AdWords account, <a href="https://econsultancy.com/blog/67171-what-is-affiliate-marketing-why-do-you-need-it/">affiliate network</a> or analytics suite.</p> <p><img src="https://assets.econsultancy.com/images/0007/7503/healthcheck.jpeg" alt="health check" width="275" height="183"></p> <h3>How important are digital audits anyway?</h3> <p>In reality, though, digital audits are absolutely vital. And third party objective auditing ensures that you’re not marking your own home work or ignoring long term problems.</p> <p>Proper auditing, UX testing and <a href="https://econsultancy.com/blog/67473-seven-conversion-rate-optimization-trends-to-take-advantage-of-in-2016/">CRO analysis</a> means you can elongate the lifetime and effectiveness of your website and digital media activity, in a way that can be done on any budget.</p> <p>Your digital real estate is often an expensive investment - you’ve got to maintain it properly to get results.</p> <h3>Regular servicing is vital</h3> <p>Think of that shiny new website you’ve just spent months developing as a new car you’ve just acquired.</p> <p>To start off with, it’s the envy of everyone who sees it. After-sales support is pretty good and you can see years of trouble free motoring ahead of you. Before you know it, though, your warranty is up and you’re on your own.</p> <p>As the car ages, small problems become big problems. It performs less effectively. You’re paying for petrol, but it’s becoming less and less economical to run. There are so many things going wrong with it you don’t know where to start. Eventually the car's value is so diminished you might as well scrap it and buy a new one.</p> <p>It’s the same with websites and digital marketing campaigns. They can’t be left to look after themselves – and even the mechanic themselves might need some fine tuning or training themselves.</p> <p><img src="https://assets.econsultancy.com/images/resized/0007/7504/service-blog-flyer.jpg" alt="car service" width="380"></p> <h3>What a digital audit can do for you </h3> <p>Audits can show you how to balance your budget more effectively through action and prioritisation. They can identify common issues like plateaus in activity and drop offs in acquisition; all the elements that reduce profitability. </p> <h3>The Lessons of the Audit</h3> <p>Constantly learn, constantly improve, constantly trade! A timely and constructive audit will help you:</p> <ul> <li>Keep up to date with the latest channel trends - Google changes, new publishers in affiliate, new platform or techniques for social. </li> <li>Use competitor analysis to keep your enemies close! It’s crucial to analyse and understand market share/spend and its consequences for your brand. </li> <li>Help you (re)define your goals.</li> <li>Confirm your objectives or KPIs so you can measure success.</li> <li>Understand new opportunities.</li> <li>Benchmark improvements or conversely measure areas of decline.</li> <li>Ensure corporate compliance – its best practice to have someone external “rubber stamp” your activity.</li> <li>Encourage serendipity – the uncovering of that nugget of information that transforms your understanding and makes the commercial difference.</li> </ul> <h3>Should you take the plunge?</h3> <p>Regular and skilled digital auditing is a detailed and never ending task.  It can transform the effectiveness of your digital advertising, website and budget.  </p> <p>Is it sexy? It’s showing your website a lot of love and attention. It’s optimizing and maximizing your marketing profitability and performance. Sounds pretty sexy to me.</p> <p><em>More on auditing:</em></p> <ul> <li><a href="https://econsultancy.com/blog/68031-answering-the-key-question-of-content-auditing-where-do-i-start/">Answering the key question of content auditing - where do I start?</a></li> </ul> tag:econsultancy.com,2008:BlogPost/68099 2016-07-25T12:57:00+01:00 2016-07-25T12:57:00+01:00 Three ways UK retailers can utilise the post-Brexit GBP drop to target international customers Ido Ariel <p><a href="http://www.barilliance.com/brexit-sales-statistics-one-week-later/">An analysis by Barilliance</a> indicates that:</p> <p><strong>1.</strong> A higher number of consumers were browsing the retailers’ websites, with sessions increasing by 5.9%.</p> <p><strong>2.</strong> More visitors were converting and making purchases, leading to a 30% increase in sales.</p> <p><strong>3.</strong> Fewer consumers were abandoning their shopping carts prior to making a purchase; cart abandonment dropped slightly by 1.3%.</p> <p>In light of these findings, UK retailers should utilise specifically-targeted website personalisation tactics to entice international shoppers browsing UK retail sites, thereby increasing the conversion rates of non-UK leads.</p> <h3>Create a sense of urgency with prompts highlighting current low GBP rate </h3> <p>UK retailers can create prompts, such as banners, messages and pop-ups, highlighting the low GBP rate to non-UK website visitors.</p> <p>Geo-targeting consumers, using methods such as e-mail acquisition and sending out <a href="https://econsultancy.com/blog/67815-why-marketers-are-failing-to-make-the-most-of-automated-emails/">trigger e-mails</a>, can enable UK online retailers to promote post-Brexit currency shifts to their advantage, marketing ostensibly reduced prices to international customers accustomed to making transactions in other currencies.</p> <p>Furthermore, highlighting the current low GBP rate as a “limited-time opportunity,” likely to change at any given moment, UK online retailers can create a sense of urgency among non-UK website browsers, promoting conversion even amongst the most hesitant of shoppers.</p> <h3>Create targeted promotions to international website visitors to enhance personalisation</h3> <p>Creating geographically-targeted promotions to website visitors from foreign countries enhances personalisation and increases conversion.</p> <p>Retailers can create banners and popups targeted at specific countries or regions and segment these promotions by city, thus providing the consumer with a very personalised shopping experience.</p> <p>For example, a retailer could offer German customers a special coupon that is exclusively available to them - or that appears to be exclusive.</p> <p><img src="https://assets.econsultancy.com/images/resized/0007/7284/germany_welcome_image-blog-flyer.jpg" alt="german promotion" width="470" height="311"></p> <p>Additionally, while the current GBP-foreign currency exchange rate may tempt website browsers to purchase from UK retail sites, the mere thought of international shipping and customs fees may be daunting enough to lead customers to abandon their carts and pay a heftier local product price.</p> <p>UK online retailers can create personalised website prompts announcing to international customers that the company provides shipping services to international addresses. Furthermore, they can offer free or reduced-cost international shipping to non-UK customers.</p> <p>Customers who do not have to worry about shipping hassles and costs are more likely to make international purchases, despite longer delivery wait times when compared to items bought locally. </p> <p>If the customer abandons the cart before completing their purchase, retailers can send geo-targeted email that highlight the free or low-cost and makes the purchase worthwhile.</p> <h3>Issue limited-time discounts or coupons to international customers</h3> <p>Presenting non-UK customers with promotional offers valid for a limited time can entice consumers to act immediately and purchase desired items at the reduced price.</p> <p>Internationally-geared limited-time discounts and coupons benefit the company’s overall revenues as well.</p> <p>UK companies feeling the post-Brexit economic pinch can vastly increase individual sales to international customers using promotional offers, despite the company’s profit-per-item rate being lower than originally projected.</p> <p>The discount offer value can be changed according to the cart value, enabling retailers to offer, for example, a 15% discount for carts up to £499 and a 20% discount for carts above £500.</p> <p><img src="https://assets.econsultancy.com/images/resized/0007/7285/cart_content_over_100_pound-blog-flyer.png" alt="personalised voucher" width="300">  <img src="https://assets.econsultancy.com/images/resized/0007/7287/cart_content_over_500_pound-blog-flyer.png" alt="limited time offer" width="300"></p> <h3>In conclusion</h3> <p>UK online retailers should take advantage of the post-Brexit referendum low GBP rate and target non-UK website visitors utilising <a href="https://econsultancy.com/reports/website-personalisation-buyers-guide/">website personalisation</a> tactics.</p> <p>International customers benefit from the strengthening of foreign currencies against the GBP, while the UK retailers gain new customers, increased sales, reduced cart abandonment and a rise in overall revenues. </p> <p><strong><em>More on Brexit and ecommerce:</em></strong></p> <ul> <li> <a href="https://econsultancy.com/blog/68003-ecommerce-in-the-uk-post-brexit-positives-negatives-opportunities/">Ecommerce in the uK post-Brexit: positives, negatives &amp; opportunities</a> </li> </ul> tag:econsultancy.com,2008:BlogPost/68070 2016-07-25T11:12:46+01:00 2016-07-25T11:12:46+01:00 Eight examples of fashion ecommerce product filters: Good & bad Nikki Gilliland <p>(Note - as there are a few differences on mobile, such as abridged filters, I am solely concentrating on the desktop experience for now.)</p> <h3>H&amp;M</h3> <p>H&amp;M’s ‘Shop by Feature’ filter is designed to point the user in the direction of curated themes.</p> <p>While creative in theory, it actually seems to be quite pointless.</p> <p>What the retailer seems to have forgotten is that the whole point of a filter system is to narrow down products in order to point the consumer in a specific direction – not lead them down a random path to ‘off duty denim’ when it’s far easier to just filter by ‘jeans’.</p> <p><img src="https://assets.econsultancy.com/images/0007/7155/H_M.PNG" alt="" width="477" height="419"></p> <p>Aside from this, the regular filter is very user-friendly.</p> <p>With options to choose by colour, size and style - plus a handy 'clear all' button - it's easy to narrow down exactly what you're looking for.</p> <p><img src="https://assets.econsultancy.com/images/0007/7310/H_M_filter.PNG" alt="" width="750" height="580"></p> <h3><strong>River Island </strong></h3> <p>River Island’s filtering system is slightly fiddly in that it only allows you to select one filter at a time (selecting mutliple filters involves multiple reloading of the results page).</p> <p>However, one feature I quite like is that it allows you to see how many items each one includes. While this might sound slightly off-putting (I did occasionally find myself focusing on the number rather than the actual category I was selecting) – it is pretty helpful.</p> <p>For instance, if a filter returns just two items, you’ll know ahead of time rather than clicking through just to be disappointed.</p> <p><img src="https://assets.econsultancy.com/images/0007/6999/river_island_filter.PNG" alt="" width="600" height="699"></p> <h3><a href="https://econsultancy.com/blog/67581-six-reasons-i-love-zara-com-and-a-few-reasons-i-don-t/"><strong>Zara </strong></a></h3> <p>Zara’s filter system is a mixed bag. By placing it at the top of the page instead of the left-hand side, it focuses the user’s attention.</p> <p>It also enables you to select multiple features at once, using specific elements like ‘characteristics’ and ‘colour’.</p> <p>And we mean specific… Anyone happen to know what an ‘ecru’ coloured shirt looks like?</p> <p>Well thanks to its filtering system, you do now.</p> <p><img src="https://assets.econsultancy.com/images/0007/7002/zara_filter_2.PNG" alt="" width="780" height="512"></p> <p>On the other hand, its filter button is not the most visible, nor are highlighted filters, a fairly major UX issue.</p> <p>Annoyingly, there is also no option to sort filtered results.</p> <p><img src="https://assets.econsultancy.com/images/0007/7375/Screen_Shot_2016-07-24_at_18.44.10.png" alt="zara" width="615" height="256"></p> <h3><strong>Ted Baker</strong></h3> <p>Much of Ted Baker’s website is slick, so it’s a little disappointing that its filtering system is less so.</p> <p>While it does offer a decent number of options to filter by, including patterns, colours, sizes etc, like River Island it only allows you to choose one option (i.e. colour <em>or</em> size) before you have to repeat the process to choose another.</p> <p>Furthermore, the drop-down menu is a little slow, making the whole process feel slightly frustrating.</p> <p>Luckily, with its creative copywriting and <a href="https://econsultancy.com/blog/67999-seven-inspiring-examples-of-ecommerce-lookbooks/">lookbooks</a>, there's a lot to enjoy elsewhere on the site.</p> <p><img src="https://assets.econsultancy.com/images/0007/7003/Ted_Baker_filter.PNG" alt="" width="513" height="670"></p> <h3><strong>Hunter</strong></h3> <p>Like Ted Baker, Hunter’s filter is in the form of a drop-down menu, however, with separate tabs for each filter option – it’s far easier to use.</p> <p>It also includes some nice touches like a tick appearing as you narrow down the search, and an instant reset button.</p> <p><img src="https://assets.econsultancy.com/images/0007/7004/Hunter_filters.PNG" alt="" width="780" height="539"></p> <h3><strong>Marks and Spencer</strong></h3> <p>User reviews is a feature that many retailers fail to utilise. Functioning as a vote of confidence, rating systems are always useful for consumers that are unsure of what products to buy.</p> <p><a href="https://econsultancy.com/blog/67883-marks-spencer-what-does-putting-the-customer-at-the-heart-of-everything-mean/">Marks and Spencer </a>is one of the few retailers to shrewdly include them.</p> <p>Allowing users to filter by star ratings (1 and above, 2 and above and so on), it helps out the consumer who values other people’s opinions. While it’s located at the bottom of the left-hand side and so fairly inconspicuous, it’s still a worthwhile addition.</p> <p> <img src="https://assets.econsultancy.com/images/0007/7006/M_S_filter_2.PNG" alt="" width="350" height="669"></p> <h3><strong>Suit Supply </strong></h3> <p>In contrast to H&amp;M, Suit Supply is a great example of how to use product filtering in a more creative fashion.</p> <p>Instead of words, it utilises visuals to highlight various product features, cleverly showcasing the retailer’s wide variety of options.</p> <p>From collar type to style by context, this element is simple but effective, and something I've not come across before.</p> <p><img src="https://assets.econsultancy.com/images/0007/7007/Suit_supply_collar.PNG" alt="" width="780" height="330"></p> <p><img src="https://assets.econsultancy.com/images/0007/7008/Suit_supply.PNG" alt="" width="780" height="527"></p> <h3><strong>ASOS</strong></h3> <p>With such a large amount of items, it’s a good job that ASOS offers such as comprehensive filter system.</p> <p>From brand and style to fit and sleeve length, there any many different options to choose from, and with different filters across different categories - it’s cleverly executed.</p> <p>As well as helping to guide the consumer to find what they like, it also allows ASOS the brand to showcase its wide variety of products.</p> <p><img src="https://assets.econsultancy.com/images/0007/7017/ASOS_filter_2.PNG" alt="" width="300" height="408"> <img src="https://assets.econsultancy.com/images/0007/7019/ASOS_jean_filter.PNG" alt="" width="300" height="435"> </p> <h3>What can we learn?</h3> <p>While H&amp;M's example might not work, the brand's willingness to experiment with product filtering should be applauded.</p> <p>If done right, a decent filter can massively improve the user experience.</p> <p>Fast, with clear visuals and the ability to select multiple options... that's the dream.</p> tag:econsultancy.com,2008:BlogPost/68106 2016-07-22T12:00:15+01:00 2016-07-22T12:00:15+01:00 10 sizzling digital marketing stats of the week Nikki Gilliland <h3>Travel industry experiences highest cart abandonment rates</h3> <p>According to the latest report by SaleCycle, the travel industry is experiencing the highest rates of online abandonment, with time sensitive flight and hotel bookings being the most commonly discarded.</p> <p>The retail industry is the second biggest industry affected, suffering from abandonment rates of 74.6%.</p> <p>Insight shows that SMS retargeting could be the most beneficial solution as consumers generally read messages within 3 minutes of receiving them.</p> <p><img src="https://assets.econsultancy.com/images/0007/7329/abandonment_rates.PNG" alt="" width="700" height="317"></p> <h3>Sweden biggest users of Snapchat and Instagram in Europe</h3> <p>The latest stage of the Adobe Best of the Best 2015 report has revealed that Swedes are the most social-media savvy of all European countries.</p> <p>33% of people in Sweden use <a href="https://econsultancy.com/blog/67257-15-reasons-your-brand-should-be-on-snapchat/">Snapchat to engage with brands</a>, compared with 22% in France and 20% in the UK.</p> <p>51% of people surveyed in Sweden said that they also use Instagram for the same reason. This is in contrast to the UK where Twitter is the leading platform for brand engagement. </p> <h3>Political searches soar since Brexit</h3> <p>Hitwise, a division of Connexity, has revealed how online behaviour is reflecting the growing concern over the current UK political situation.</p> <p>Since <a href="https://econsultancy.com/blog/68003-ecommerce-in-the-uk-post-brexit-positives-negatives-opportunities">Brexit</a>, there has been a 300% increase in searches about moving to other EU countries.</p> <p>Likewise, there has been an increase in searches for mortgages, interest rates and gold.</p> <p>Despite the weaker pound, searches for holidays and flights have not been impacted.</p> <p><img src="https://assets.econsultancy.com/images/0007/7334/image001.png" alt="" width="750" height="359"></p> <h3>Shoppers less tolerant of queuing due to technology </h3> <p>A new report from Worldpay has highlighted how Brits are becoming less patient when it comes to queuing in-store.</p> <p>Out of a nationwide survey of over 2,500 consumers, London was found to be the least patient, with 18% prepared to queue for more than five minutes. In contrast, northerners are the most patient, with 28% of shoppers saying they’d be willing to queue for longer.</p> <p>The rise of online shopping is said to be the reason behind this growing trend. </p> <p>One-click ordering and next-day delivery means that consumers are becoming more demanding as a result.</p> <h3>‘Invisible socks’ the most searched-for menswear item in the UK</h3> <p>With temperatures soaring to 33 degrees this week, Lyst has been looking to see if the heat has been affecting our spending habits.</p> <p>According to data, sales of ‘invisible socks’ (i.e ankle or trainer socks) are up 218% week on week, making it the most-searched for item right now.</p> <p>It seems women are feeling summery too, with Monday seeing us purchase more white dresses than black for the first time this year.</p> <p><img src="https://assets.econsultancy.com/images/0007/7338/iStock_82510309_SMALL.jpg" alt="" width="600" height="399"></p> <h3>Retail apps overtake mobile web for loyalty and engagement</h3> <p>App commerce company Poq has discovered that more shoppers are moving to mobile apps to buy.</p> <p>According to research, the average online shopper spends 6% more money on apps and 5% less money on the mobile web.</p> <p>What’s more, apps are also said to increase customer retention and improve long-term loyalty. Long-term retention rates are over twice as high when a shopper makes at least one purchase in an app.</p> <p><img src="https://assets.econsultancy.com/images/0007/7335/mobile.PNG" alt="" width="300" height="424"></p> <h3>7.5m people in the UK left behind by digital revolution</h3> <p>Analysis by Experian has discovered that, when it comes to digital behaviour, Britain is a nation divided into three distinct camps.</p> <p>A third of people in the UK are digital devotees, with the most devices and the most amount of time spent online.</p> <p>Half of the population are day-to-day doers, using the internet for practical reasons like paying bills.</p> <p>Lastly, 7.5m people are said to be digital dawdlers, with a limited knowledge and lack of interest.</p> <p>Insight suggest that businesses must take this into account when communicating with audiences.</p> <h3>Sports fans flock to YouTube ahead of Rio Olympics</h3> <p>In anticipation of the Olympics this summer, research from Ipsos Mori and Flamingo has revealed how online video platforms will benefit from the event.</p> <p>A survey found that 75% of Brits will look for related <a href="https://econsultancy.com/blog/67932-the-future-of-video-is-vertical-texted-emotional/">video content</a> during the Olympics. Similarly, 44% will watch sports or fitness videos online while simultaneously watching live sports on TV. </p> <p>Unsurprisingly, YouTube is the most popular platform, with 78% of people saying that it is home to content that they can’t find elsewhere.</p> <p><img src="https://assets.econsultancy.com/images/0007/7336/youtube.PNG" alt="" width="630" height="362"></p> <h3>Binge-viewing is on the rise</h3> <p>Research suggests that binge-viewing (i.e. watching multiple episodes of a TV show in one sitting) has never been more prevalent. </p> <p>According to data from GfK MRI, 6 in 10 television viewers say they regularly watch three or more episodes in one go.</p> <p>Millennials are the most prolific binge-watchers, with 16% of this demographic saying that watching live television is a special event.</p> <p>As a result, the challenge for brands is finding how to advertise to them.</p> <h3>Luxury brands set to get the biggest boost from this year's Black Friday?</h3> <p>According to research by Qubit, brands in the luxury retail category saw the highest boost in conversion rate on last year's Black Friday.</p> <p>Conversely, electronics and home and garden retailers had the lowest increase, with the latter seeing a 27% uplift in conversions compared to the rest of year average.</p> <p>With some fashion retailers seeing a spike in conversions despite not even participating, it appears the day inspires more shopping behaviour all round.</p> tag:econsultancy.com,2008:BlogPost/68087 2016-07-21T14:42:17+01:00 2016-07-21T14:42:17+01:00 Six brilliant blogs from the beauty industry Nikki Gilliland <p>Whether you're into beauty or not, the following examples are well worth a look.</p> <h3>L’Oreal</h3> <p>With its unique domain name, L’Oréal’s <a href="http://www.makeup.com/" target="_blank">makeup.com</a> is designed to feel like an independent publication rather than a brand blog.</p> <p><img src="https://assets.econsultancy.com/images/0007/7167/l_oreal.PNG" alt="" width="780" height="634"><img src="https://assets.econsultancy.com/images/0007/7166/makeup.com_quote.PNG" alt="" width="780" height="145"></p> <p>Its authenticity isn’t fake either.</p> <p>Often publishing product-focused features like “The Best Drugstore Highlighters”, it includes a wide variety of brands (not just promoting its own) to provide readers with a balanced and surprisingly unbiased frame of reference.</p> <p><img src="https://assets.econsultancy.com/images/0007/7168/makeup.com_2.PNG" alt="" width="780" height="685"></p> <h3>Birchbox</h3> <p>A beauty subscription service, Birchbox gives consumers the opportunity to discover new products each month.</p> <p><a href="http://blog.birchbox.co.uk/%20" target="_blank">Its blog</a> cleverly provides context for these products, using informative articles to inspire, educate and ultimately give consumers a reason to continue their subscription.</p> <p><img src="https://assets.econsultancy.com/images/0007/7169/birchbox.PNG" alt="" width="780" height="675"></p> <p>With its unboxing videos and ‘Birchbox reactions’ articles, a lot of the content is self-promotional (something that could potentially put non-subscribers off).</p> <p>However, for loyal consumers, this aspect undoubtedly provides extra value.</p> <p><iframe src="https://www.youtube.com/embed/CbB-hGTye58?wmode=transparent" width="700" height="394"></iframe></p> <h3>Mankind</h3> <p>It might be one of the relatively few <a href="http://www.mankind.co.uk/blog/" target="_blank">male grooming blogs</a> out there, but there's more reason to visit Mankind than that.</p> <p><img src="https://assets.econsultancy.com/images/0007/7170/mankind.PNG" alt="" width="780" height="607"></p> <p>With five Editors each with their own area of expertise, it has a nice mix of lifestyle content, using distinct verticals like ‘International’ and ‘Luxury’. </p> <p><img src="https://assets.econsultancy.com/images/0007/7171/mankind_editors.PNG" alt="" width="780" height="751"></p> <p>One of the reasons I like it is that, alongside general articles, it’s not afraid to experiment with a more in-depth approach.</p> <p>It’s ‘ingredient focus’ series is particularly interesting, and something that many of the fluffier, female-driven blogs could learn from.</p> <p><img src="https://assets.econsultancy.com/images/0007/7172/mankind_mandelic_acid.PNG" alt="" width="780" height="640"></p> <h3>Sephora</h3> <p>Who needs models when beauty products can look so attractive?</p> <p>With its stunning product-focused photography, <a href="http://theglossy.sephora.com/">Sephora Glossy</a> showcases the very best of its main shop.</p> <p><img src="https://assets.econsultancy.com/images/0007/7173/Sephora_Glossy.PNG" alt="" width="780" height="543"></p> <p>Instead of long-form content, it publishes short how-to’s and product curations, making it feel more like an extension of Pinterest or Tumblr than an in-depth publication.</p> <p><img src="https://assets.econsultancy.com/images/0007/7174/sephora.PNG" alt="" width="600" height="723"></p> <p>With its user-friendly design, it’s one of those sites that you could find yourself scrolling through for ages.</p> <p><img src="https://assets.econsultancy.com/images/0007/7175/Sephora_how_to.PNG" alt="" width="600" height="850"></p> <h3>Clinique</h3> <p>Marketing itself as a philosophy rather than a cosmetics line, Clinique’s blog focuses on the two verticals of beauty and lifestyle.</p> <p><img src="https://assets.econsultancy.com/images/0007/7177/clinique_blog.PNG" alt="" width="780" height="644"></p> <p>Cleverly using skincare as a spin-off to other verticals, it also covers topics like food and fitness, implementing video to further engage visitors.</p> <p><iframe src="https://www.youtube.com/embed/Nw0GvcdKnHY?wmode=transparent" width="730" height="411"></iframe></p> <p>In comparison to other blogs, it is also pleasingly minimal, proving that a less-is-more approach can work. </p> <p><img src="https://assets.econsultancy.com/images/0007/7182/clinique_minimal.PNG" alt="" width="780" height="368"></p> <h3>Urban Decay</h3> <p>In comparison to Clinique, Urban Decay’s blog is loud, proud and <a href="http://www.urbandecay.com/the-violet-underground">unashamedly purple</a>.</p> <p><img src="https://assets.econsultancy.com/images/0007/7178/urban_decay_violet.PNG" alt="" width="780" height="335"></p> <p>Recognising the digital mind-set of its core demographic, it is heavily geared around the online beauty community where bloggers and YouTubers have huge influence.</p> <p><img src="https://assets.econsultancy.com/images/0007/7179/urban_decay.PNG" alt="" width="700" height="825"></p> <p>The blog has an original feel to it, with the standard ‘How-To’s sitting alongside unique ‘Women Who Rock Our World’ and ‘XO, WZ’ – the latter being an insider look at co-founder Wende Zomnir’s world.</p> <p><iframe src="https://www.youtube.com/embed/ATaqtu7URYI?wmode=transparent" width="800" height="475"></iframe></p> <p><em>More on the beauty industry:</em></p> <ul> <li><a href="https://econsultancy.com/blog/67884-seven-ways-social-media-is-shaping-the-beauty-industry/">Seven ways social media is shaping the beauty industry </a></li> <li> <a href="https://econsultancy.com/reports/the-rise-of-influencers/">The Rise of the Influencers </a>(subscriber only)</li> <li><a href="https://econsultancy.com/blog/67630-forget-ao-com-does-benefit-cosmetics-offer-the-best-ecommerce-experience/">Forget AO.com, does Benefit Cosmetics off the best ecommerce experience? </a></li> </ul>