tag:econsultancy.com,2008:/topics/search-marketing Latest Search Marketing content from Econsultancy 2016-09-28T11:21:30+01:00 tag:econsultancy.com,2008:BlogPost/68337 2016-09-28T11:21:30+01:00 2016-09-28T11:21:30+01:00 The 10 things you need to know about Google Penguin 4.0 Patricio Robles <p>Here are the top 10 things you need to know.</p> <h3>1. Penguin is all about spam</h3> <p>As a refresher, Google's Penguin algorithm is designed to identify spammy sites that slip through Google's other filters.</p> <p>It was first launched in 2012, and the last update was rolled out in October 2014.</p> <h3>2. It's real-time</h3> <p>As Gary Illyes of Google's Search Ranking Team explained:</p> <blockquote> <p>Historically, the list of sites affected by Penguin was periodically refreshed at the same time.</p> <p>Once a webmaster considerably improved their site and its presence on the internet, many of Google's algorithms would take that into consideration very fast, but others, like Penguin, needed to be refreshed.</p> <p>With this change, Penguin's data is refreshed in real time, so changes will be visible much faster, typically taking effect shortly after we recrawl and reindex a page. </p> </blockquote> <p>This is probably good news for sites that get hit by Penguin, as they won't need to wait for an update for the chance to make changes and recover.</p> <h3>3. It's granular</h3> <p>According to Illyes: "Penguin now devalues spam by adjusting ranking based on spam signals, rather than affecting ranking of the whole site."</p> <p>What does this mean in practical terms? That isn't so clear. </p> <p>Search Engine Land's Barry Schwartz asked Google for clarification, and based on the company's response, <a href="http://searchengineland.com/google-updates-penguin-says-now-real-time-part-core-algorithm-259302">says</a>:</p> <blockquote> <p>Our best interpretation... is that Penguin might impact specific pages on a site, or it might impact sections or wide swaths of a site, while other pages are fine.</p> </blockquote> <h3>4. It's in all languages and countries</h3> <p>Nobody escapes the Penguin.</p> <h3>5. It's part of the core Google algorithm now</h3> <p>Until now, Penguin has been its own entity.</p> <p>With Penguin 4.0, Google says that "Penguin is now part of our core algorithm," which it notes consists of more than 200 other unique signals that can affect rankings.</p> <p><img src="https://assets.econsultancy.com/images/0007/9642/penguin.jpg" alt="" width="670" height="440"></p> <h3>6. There will be no more announcements of Penguin updates</h3> <p>Now that it's part of the core algorithm and will work in real-time, Google says that it will no longer comment on future Penguin refreshes.</p> <h3>7. The effects probably won't be seen immediately</h3> <p>It's not known whether the new Penguin code has been rolled out to all of Google's data centers.</p> <p>But even if it has, it could take time before the effects are seen given that there are almost certainly many URLs that will need to be recrawled.</p> <blockquote class="twitter-tweet"> <p lang="en" dir="ltr"><a href="https://twitter.com/dawnieando">@dawnieando</a> <a href="https://twitter.com/rustybrick">@rustybrick</a> <a href="https://twitter.com/Marie_Haynes">@Marie_Haynes</a> <a href="https://twitter.com/dr_pete">@dr_pete</a> <a href="https://twitter.com/JohnMu">@JohnMu</a> yup, that one</p> — Gary Illyes (@methode) <a href="https://twitter.com/methode/status/779320657762856961">September 23, 2016</a> </blockquote> <h3>8. It will be difficult to identify Penguin's fingerprints</h3> <p>Because of Penguin's real-time nature, it will be increasingly difficult to identify whether ranking changes can be attributed to Penguin refreshes.</p> <blockquote class="twitter-tweet"> <p lang="en" dir="ltr"><a href="https://twitter.com/512banque">@512banque</a> <a href="https://twitter.com/methode">@methode</a> Given the way these things roll out, I'd say "good luck" -- I don't think that's easily possible, lots of things overlap</p> — John Mueller (@JohnMu) <a href="https://twitter.com/JohnMu/status/780153459358203907">September 25, 2016</a> </blockquote> <h3>9. Google's old advice stays the same</h3> <p><a href="http://www.thesempost.com/google-launches-real-time-penguin-40/">According to</a> TheSEMPost's Jennifer Slegg, a Google spokesperson confirmed that the company has not changed its linking guidelines, and despite rumors to the contrary, has also not changed its recommendation for using disavows.</p> <blockquote class="twitter-tweet"> <p lang="en" dir="ltr"><a href="https://twitter.com/glenngabe">@glenngabe</a> OK, clearer: no change on using the disavow file. Use it thoughtfully, as always.</p> — John Mueller (@JohnMu) <a href="https://twitter.com/JohnMu/status/779304742929465344">September 23, 2016</a> </blockquote> <h3>10. Google still wants you to focus on content quality, not SEO</h3> <p>Google's Illyes closed the announcement of Penguin 4.0 with a reminder...</p> <blockquote> <p>The web has significantly changed over the years, but as we said in our original post, webmasters should be free to focus on creating amazing, compelling websites.</p> </blockquote> <p>While this almost certainly won't put an end to the art and science we call SEO, updates like Penguin 4.0, coupled with the vast number of signals Google incorporates into its algorithm, mean that companies looking to earn and maintain top rankings can't ignore the forest for the trees.</p> <p>As TheSEMPost's Slegg notes, it's even possible that sites penalized by the last Penguin update two years ago that thought they cleaned up their act won't see the recovery they hoped for.</p> <p>As she observed: "A few years back, some ways of building links were seen as fine, while today they are definitely viewed as problematic.</p> <p>"And some of the sites that previously had high quality links two years ago could be a low quality site today, if the site was abandoned or the site changed owners." </p> <p><em><strong>For more on this topic, check out our international range of <a href="https://econsultancy.com/training/courses/topics/search-marketing/">SEO Training Courses</a>.</strong></em></p> tag:econsultancy.com,2008:BlogPost/68322 2016-09-23T13:42:24+01:00 2016-09-23T13:42:24+01:00 10 juicy digital marketing stats from this week Nikki Gilliland <p>If you'd like further information, the Internet Statistics Compendium is <a href="https://econsultancy.com/reports/internet-statistics-compendium/" target="_blank">ready and waiting</a>.</p> <h3>90% of UK grocery retailers have issues meeting customer requirements</h3> <p>New research by Blue Yonder has found that grocery retailers are failing to keep up with growing customer demands.</p> <p>From interviews with 750 grocery managers and directors across the globe, 90% of UK respondents said they’re falling short, with 25% unable to deliver an omnichannel experience.</p> <p>Furthermore, nearly 30% said decisions in the supply chain are slowing down their decision-making, and the main reason they are unable to keep pace.</p> <h3>Retailers take advantage of dual-screen shoppers</h3> <p>eBay’s <a href="http://www.ebay-report.co.uk/#homepage" target="_blank">UK retail report</a> highlights how primetime TV shows are influencing shopper behaviour, specifically through the rise of ‘dual screening’ – i.e. the act of watching television whilst simultaneously surfing the internet.</p> <p>According to data, eBay saw a 67% rise in interaction with baking products while the first episode of the new Great British Bake Off was on air, rising to 133% during the hour immediately afterwards.</p> <p>Other items that have seen an increase in search interest include Peaky Blinders’ style flat caps, Game of Thrones merchandise and Olympic-inspired bicycles.</p> <p><img src="https://assets.econsultancy.com/images/0007/9462/ebay_insights.PNG" alt="" width="700" height="415"></p> <h3>Facebook generates 14.2% of all traffic for major online publishers</h3> <p>Despite algorithm changes, Echobox has reported that Facebook’s role in media distribution continues to grow, with the network now generating 14.2% of all traffic for media companies.</p> <p>This means that Facebook’s share of referral traffic has trebled from 5.2% of all online traffic to 14.2% since January 2014, compared to Twitter’s share which has remained static at 1.8%.</p> <p>With Facebook a continued focus for publishers, many are now employing dedicated teams for social media optimisation.</p> <h3>UK shoppers make impulse purchases 28% of the time</h3> <p>A new study by HookLogic has delved into the UK’s shopping habits, discovering that one third of consumer purchases are made up of impulse buys.</p> <p>Impulse shopping is higher in the infant and toddler category, followed by food and groceries and toys and games.</p> <p>Interestingly, 60% of shoppers cite product descriptions as a top factor in the decision to purchase.</p> <p>When it comes to categories such as Electronics and Home Décor, consumers are much more considered, thinking about their purchase weeks or even months beforehand.  </p> <p><img src="https://assets.econsultancy.com/images/0007/9465/purchase_decision_cycle.PNG" alt="" width="770" height="338"></p> <h3>9 out of 10 Brits think NHS Hospitals could be improved by digitisation</h3> <p><a href="http://www.apadmi.com/enterprise-healthcare-report-press/" target="_blank">Research by Apadmi Enterprise</a> has found that 60% of UK patients are dissatisfied with the lack of digitisation within the NHS.</p> <p>Following Jeremy Hunt’s pledge to improve technology in healthcare, 9 out of 10 Brits say that the use of mobile apps would significantly improve matters.</p> <p>76% said they would like to use tech to manage hospital appointments, such as booking, cancelling or confirming an appointment. Likewise, 55% would use technology to store their prescriptions.</p> <p>Despite this desire, 55% of patients say they have never used mobile app technology to engage with the NHS.</p> <h3>Over 40% of video budgets allocated to formats beyond pre-roll</h3> <p>According to Collective’s latest report, online video advertisers are buying more strategic and varied video solutions than ever before, with an increased investment in display, YouTube and social channels.</p> <p>In 2015, 56% of respondents were buying both video and display. In 2016, this figure has jumped to 73%.</p> <p>This is in comparison to the percentage of those buying traditional TV and Video, which has fallen from 38% last year to 26% in 2016. </p> <p><img src="https://assets.econsultancy.com/images/0007/9463/video_online_buyers.PNG" alt="" width="469" height="411"></p> <h3>39% of consumers still wary about sharing economy</h3> <p>Research from Trustpilot reveals that while 47% say the sharing economy benefits consumers, 39% feel these companies aren’t as trustworthy as traditional outlets.</p> <p>The biggest area of concern is a lack of clarity over who is responsible if something goes wrong. 29% of survey respondents said they had previously avoided using a sharing economy platform due to this issue.</p> <p>The survey also looks at the various types of platforms that consumers feel the most comfortable using (see the below charts for popularity rankings).</p> <p><img src="https://assets.econsultancy.com/images/0007/9461/sharing_economy.PNG" alt="" width="780" height="256"></p> <h3>Adobe reports continued deflation in the UK following Brexit</h3> <p>Adobe’s monthly Digital Price Index (DPI) for August has revealed that prices of durable goods such as TVs and computers have declined, with online sales dropping sharply year on year.</p> <p>Despite demand being up in the months of May and June, growth slowed to 16% in July, leading to a 10% year on year decrease this August. This is in comparison to the US, which saw a 30.2% increase in the same period.</p> <p>Travel prices to the UK also saw a decline, with August hotel prices in London down 16% year on year.</p> <h3>Less than a third of organisations carry out attribution across majority of campaigns</h3> <p>Our <a href="https://econsultancy.com/reports/state-of-marketing-attribution/" target="_blank">State of Marketing Attribution report</a>, in association with AdRoll, has found that organisations are still falling behind on attribution. </p> <p>While it plays an increasingly crucial role, just 31% of organisations carry out attribution across the majority of campaigns. </p> <p>As well as marketers lacking the skills and resources to analyse results, it also appears to be due to the increasingly mobile-centric nature of consumers, with traditional tracking methods (such as cookies) not translating effectively to mobile. </p> <p>Despite this, four out of five organisations claim that the rise of big data has increased focus on attribution.</p> <p><img src="https://assets.econsultancy.com/images/0007/9467/attribution.PNG" alt="" width="640" height="491"></p> <h3>Mobile accounts for a half of all video views</h3> <p>According to new figures from Ooyala, mobile video has reached a tipping point, with just over half of all views coming from mobile.</p> <p><a href="http://www.ooyala.com/resources/online-video-index" target="_blank">The Global Video Index Q2 2016</a> revealed a 15% year on year rise in mobile video views, meaning that they now account for 50.6% of the total amount. </p> <p>This figure reflects the growing popularity of smartphones over tablets, with smartphones accounting for a 43% share of mobile video views, compared to 8% on tablets.</p> tag:econsultancy.com,2008:BlogPost/68294 2016-09-20T13:00:00+01:00 2016-09-20T13:00:00+01:00 Five simple search marketing tips to prepare for the holiday season Ben Davis <h3>1. Prepare landing pages early like Currys, and keep them year-round</h3> <p>Many retailers make mistakes with their seasonal landing pages, whether for Christmas, Hannukah or Black Friday.</p> <p>When <a href="https://econsultancy.com/blog/67198-black-friday-landing-pages-analysed-ao-com-to-tesco/">we looked at UK Black Friday retailers in mid-November 2015</a>, Littlewoods and Richer Sounds were making basic errors.</p> <p>Richer Sounds had a 410 error - their landing page had been removed earlier in the year, but was still listed in Google.</p> <p>Littlewoods had a whole host of pages indexed, but many were time-sensitive landing pages, used to surface offers throughout Black Friday from the previous year (<a href="https://assets.econsultancy.com/images/0006/9012/Screen_Shot_2015-11-13_at_14.45.26.png">see an example here</a>). Consequently, these pages made little sense out of context.</p> <p>Who managed their Black Friday pages properly? Well, Currys was the only UK retailer we found <a href="https://econsultancy.com/blog/67061-seo-black-friday-how-are-brands-preparing-their-landing-pages/">with a year-round landing page</a> (see the chart below).</p> <p>It's no coincidence that Currys was also the only UK retailer ranking on page one for many of the broadest Black Friday search terms.</p> <p><em>Currys ranking year-round</em></p> <p><img src="https://assets.econsultancy.com/images/0006/8064/Screen-Shot-2015-10-15-at-12.33.png" alt="currys search performance black friday" width="615"></p> <h3>2. Capture visitor data (like AO.com) so you can keep engaging away from search</h3> <p>Let's stick with landing pages for a moment - below is one of my favourite examples, from AO.com.</p> <p>It's a simple Black Friday landing page, but the call to action is clear. Relax, give us your email and we'll do the hard work, letting you know when deals arrive.</p> <p>There's even a prize draw element to further encourage users to sign up.</p> <p>Let's face it, once users have found you via search, you don't want to rely on their memory and intent to find you a second time. Getting their info lets you know who has and, more importantly, hasn't purchased yet.</p> <p>This technique may also save you some money on paid search and social ads, if you can milk the (notionally) cheaper email channel a bit more.</p> <p><img src="https://assets.econsultancy.com/images/0006/9040/Black_Friday_2015___Great_Deals__ao.com.png" alt="black friday ao.com" width="600"></p> <h3>3. Get your categories structured (like Debenhams) to take advantage of gendered and non-gendered search</h3> <p>According to <a href="https://advertise.bingads.microsoft.com/en-us/insights/tis-the-season-for-successful-search-campaigns">Bing Network data</a> from the holidays season, shoppers search categorically (e.g. 'handbags'). But, nearly half of top searched keywords included gender keywords like 'mens'.</p> <p>Back-to-school searches provide a useful comparison here.</p> <p>In <a href="https://econsultancy.com/blog/68165-back-to-school-search-trends-how-top-retailers-optimise-landing-pages/">our analysis from earlier this year</a>, the top performing retailers had generic category landing pages (e.g. Kids' school shoes), above gender-specific landing pages or filters.</p> <p>This page structure (/kids/shoes-boots/school-shoes/girls) allows Debenhams to take advantage of gendered searches and by splitting content content between pages.</p> <p>Even for less obviously gendered products, your keyword research may show you that this strategy is sensible.</p> <p><img src="https://assets.econsultancy.com/images/0007/7860/school_shoes_page_debenhams.PNG" alt="debenhams school shoes page" width="615"></p> <h3>4. Drive November mobile searchers to store</h3> <p>The same Bing report I referenced above shows that eight out of 10 of the highest search volume days on mobile occur in November, and skew for weekends. Only two of the top 10 PC and tablet search days fall in this month.</p> <p>While many of these mobile searchers will be window shopping from their own sofa or seat on the bus, intending to purchase on laptop at a later date, others may be ready to visit a store.</p> <p>That's why your Google Places listings should be up to date. <a href="https://econsultancy.com/blog/68272-local-search-experiences-the-good-the-bad-and-the-ugly/">You can read a full post on how to do this</a>, but in short you should:</p> <ul> <li>Ensure opening hours are correct for holidays and addresses consistent.</li> <li>Use Schema markup to identify customer reviews, surfacing them in Places.</li> <li>Have mobile optimised store-specific pages on your website (see Schuh below).</li> <li>Add stock check to these store webpages if possible.</li> </ul> <p><img src="https://assets.econsultancy.com/images/0007/8856/Screen_Shot_2016-09-07_at_10.24.10.png" alt="schuh store page" width="615" height="458"></p> <p>It's not just about Places listings, of course.</p> <p>Local search ads now appear in Maps, too, and retailers should be experimenting with Google's <a href="https://econsultancy.com/blog/67038-11-ways-to-track-online-to-offline-conversions-and-vice-versa/">offline conversion tracking</a>, in order to optimise PPC spend.</p> <h3>5. Make returns &amp; exchange policy, and delivery &amp; click-and-collect info as clear as day</h3> <p>It's not rocket science. Whether we're talking about metadescriptions, ad copy, landing pages or product pages - conversion is affected when customers don't know how easily they can get hold of a product.</p> <p>More and more retailers offer free returns, same/next-day delivery, and click-and-collect. That means if you yourself offer it, you'd better make it clear as day and take advantage of all that investment in operations.</p> <p><img src="https://assets.econsultancy.com/images/0007/9357/Screen_Shot_2016-09-20_at_11.48.05.png" alt="free delivery" width="615" height="581"></p> tag:econsultancy.com,2008:BlogPost/68299 2016-09-16T13:58:00+01:00 2016-09-16T13:58:00+01:00 10 snazzy digital marketing stats from this week Nikki Gilliland <h3>Nearly 50% of chat app users are subjected to spam every week</h3> <p>Findings from the Mobile Messaging Fraud Report 2016 have revealed that 26% of chat app users receive an unwanted message every day – and 49% receive a minimum of one a week.</p> <p>While spam still affects SMS more than chat apps, the gap is closing. 28% of consumers receive an unsolicited SMS message every day, with 58% reporting one every week.</p> <p>33% also said these messages were attempts to get them to disclose personal data like bank details or online passwords.</p> <p>Despite this, most consumers still cite SMS as the most trustworthy way to communicate with companies.</p> <p><img src="https://assets.econsultancy.com/images/0007/9257/messenger_trust.PNG" alt="" width="736" height="430"></p> <h3>Mobile app install ads trigger a 95% increase in total clicks</h3> <p><a href="http://kenshoo.com/mobile-app-trends/" target="_blank">A Kenshoo report</a> has revealed that global spend on Facebook and Instagram install ads grew 54% year-on-year this Q2.</p> <p>The growth appears to be due to the wider adoption of carousel format ads, which now support up to five separate images and links.</p> <p>Futhermore, an increase in the use of video also looks to have contributed, accounting for 42% of spend on mobile app install ads in the quarter.</p> <p>The report highlights how the gaming sector is responsible for 61% of total spend in the second quarter, paying more than any other industry for mobile app install ads.</p> <h3>Users fail to shop through social buy buttons</h3> <p>Despite 3 out of 4 consumers being aware of <a href="https://econsultancy.com/blog/67887-twitter-ditches-its-buy-button-puts-focus-on-retargeting/">social buy buttons</a>, research from Sumo Heavy Industries has found that just 10% have ever used one. </p> <p>Likewise, 61% say they don’t think they will be using them any time soon.</p> <p>First introduced by Pinterest’s ‘buyable pins’, the feature allows consumers to shop directly through social posts. Since, we’ve seen a plethora of platforms introduce their own versions.</p> <p>So why the reluctance? It’s been suggested that the chronological nature of social media feeds means shoppable posts often go unnoticed, or are seen as a disruption to the user experience.</p> <p><img src="https://assets.econsultancy.com/images/0007/9259/pinterest.PNG" alt="" width="750" height="303"></p> <h3>Christmas spend predicted to increase by 12% in the US this year</h3> <p>The summer might only just be over, but according to Rubicon Project, nearly one-third of US consumers have already started their Christmas shopping.</p> <p>The Holiday Consumer Pulse Poll predicts that Americans will spend an average of $1,175 this holiday season, which is an increase of 12% on 2015.</p> <p>Parents and millennials are reported to be key drivers for this growth, with 39% of millennials already buying gifts.</p> <h3>Missing same-day delivery options cost the high street £4.9bn a year</h3> <p>According to research from the delivery platform, Stuart, consumers would spend an average of £168 each year on their favourite retailer if it offered <a href="https://econsultancy.com/blog/67322-not-offering-same-day-delivery-you-could-be-losing-customers/">same-day delivery</a>. </p> <p>As well as delivery options being increasingly important in terms of how much we spend, it also affects where and why consumers shop.</p> <p>The research found that 32 % of shoppers will always choose a high street retailer that offers same-day delivery over one that doesn’t. </p> <p>What’s more, 79% would switch from their favourite high street retailer if it didn’t offer a desirable delivery method.</p> <p><img src="https://assets.econsultancy.com/images/0007/9258/stuart_infographic.PNG" alt="" width="472" height="469"></p> <h3>Branded content on social drives better engagement</h3> <p>Research from Yahoo suggests that consumers are becoming more receptive to branded content, as long as it provides them with something of value. </p> <p>A study on the attitudes of Tumblr users found that high-quality content can be the gateway to greater engagement, most notably in three areas:</p> <ul> <li>73% agree that content helps them to form an <strong>opinion</strong> of the brand</li> <li>74% agree that brands which create content they like can become like <strong>friends</strong> on social media</li> <li>73% agree they’re more likely to be <strong>loyal</strong> to a brand with a strong personality in its content</li> </ul> <h3>Reviews are the more influential than friend and celebrity endorsements</h3> <p>In a survey of 2,140 UK adults, Feefo found that 75% of consumers are influenced by <a href="https://econsultancy.com/blog/9366-ecommerce-consumer-reviews-why-you-need-them-and-how-to-use-them/">reviews</a> when making an online purchase.</p> <p>This is in comparison to recommendations from friends or <a href="https://econsultancy.com/reports/the-future-of-celebrity-marketing/">celebrity endorsements</a>, where less than half of people said they would be influenced to buy.</p> <p>However, it appears money is the overriding factor, with 79% of consumers stating that the biggest thing to influence a purchasing decision would be a substantial discount or offer.</p> <h3>Placing brand disclosure after headline increases CTR on native mobile content</h3> <p>An infographic from Polar has highlighted some interesting trends in branded content performance on mobile, specifically when it comes to disclosure.</p> <p>Research found that including the advertiser in a native ad's disclosure term can increase CTR by 220%. </p> <p>Moreover, placing a disclosure term after the headline also improves CTR by 300% on mobile.</p> <p><img src="https://assets.econsultancy.com/images/0007/9256/brand_disclosure.PNG" alt="" width="500" height="467"></p> <h3>Asda comes out top for click-throughs</h3> <p>Kantar Media company AdGooroo has named Asda as the UK’s leading supermarket for paid search advertising this year.</p> <p>In a study examining Google desktop advertising activity on 83 branded and unbranded grocery-related keywords, Asda was found to have generated 5.8 m clicks.</p> <p>This is 2.5m clicks more than its closest competitor, Waitrose, which saw 3.3m click-throughs in total.</p> <p>Despite being the UK’s second largest supermarket, Sainsbury’s came sixth in the list. Insight suggests this is due to stiff competition from advertisers bidding on competitor’s keywords.</p> <p><img src="https://assets.econsultancy.com/images/0007/9255/asda_keywords.PNG" alt="" width="400" height="212"></p> <h3>36% of parents want school websites to be improved</h3> <p><a href="https://www.web-foundry.co.uk/blog/education/304-do-schools-have-more-to-learn-when-it-comes-to-their-online-strategy" target="_blank">Research by Web Foundry</a> has found that many parents are unimpressed by the online strategy of their children’s schools.</p> <p>Despite 93% of the parents surveyed saying they use a school website, just over a third rated it as satisfactory or worse, with a quarter saying that it could definitely be improved.</p> <p>The biggest problems cited included a lack of information about school holidays as well as notifications about closures and school trips.</p> <p>36% said they would feel happier and more engaged if improvements were made.</p> tag:econsultancy.com,2008:BlogPost/68287 2016-09-15T15:00:00+01:00 2016-09-15T15:00:00+01:00 What is faceted search and why should marketers care? Ben Davis <h3>Changing definitions of faceted search</h3> <p>Traditionally, faceted search is another name for faceted navigation, known predominately in our industry from ecommerce user interfaces.</p> <p>As Wikipedia puts it, 'faceted search enables users to navigate a multi-dimensional information space by combining text search with a progressive narrowing of choices in each dimension.'</p> <p><strong>But</strong>, as championed in recent talks from <a href="http://www.tomanthony.co.uk/">Tom Anthony</a>, Head of R&amp;D at Distilled, faceted search is also being used to describe the rise of faceted information within the search engine results themselves.</p> <p>Rather than pushing you towards a website, Google often provides a direct answer or surfaces navigable information from the Google Knowledge Graph (now that Google is increasingly thinking about <a href="https://research.googleblog.com/2014/08/teaching-machines-to-read-between-lines.html">entities and their relationships, rather than keywords</a>).</p> <p>This is search engines capturing more of the funnel, often using implicit as well as explicit data (e.g. context such as location).</p> <h3>Examples of faceted search</h3> <p><strong>Cards</strong></p> <p>The card format has been around for a while and is often used to deliver answers in the SERPs.</p> <p>Below you can see three examples of searches for medical symptoms, and the answers Google returns from various websites.</p> <p>Note that several answers are provided on cards, which can be scrolled through in a carousel.</p> <p><em>Click to enlarge</em></p> <p><a href="https://assets.econsultancy.com/images/0007/9198/Symptoms_Search.png"><img src="https://assets.econsultancy.com/images/0007/9197/cards_health_queries.png" alt="symptoms search" width="615" height="410"></a></p> <p><strong>Take action from knowledge panels (e.g. book an appointment)</strong></p> <p>Google has tested book an appointment markup in relevant knowledge panels. Clicking through takes the user to the appropriate landing page on the website.</p> <p><a href="http://searchengineland.com/book-an-appointment-right-from-the-search-results-with-googles-latest-test-228404">via Search Engine Land</a></p> <p><img src="https://assets.econsultancy.com/images/0007/9192/book_appt.jpg" alt="book appt" width="615"></p> <p><strong>Google Shopping rich features</strong></p> <p>Google introduced richer cards to <a href="https://econsultancy.com/blog/68264-six-clever-ways-to-optimise-google-shopping-campaigns/">Google Shopping</a> with Showcase Shopping ads (allowing retailers to present outfits and list products). With <a href="https://adwords.googleblog.com/2016/09/shop-look-on-google.html">Shop the Look</a>, an experiment during Fashion Week, Google has gone even further.</p> <p>Some broad Google Shopping queries trigger a slider of content featuring outfits put together by influencers.</p> <p>Users can click through and see each product from the outfit profiled on a page within Google Shopping, with links to each individual retailer.</p> <p>This allows shoppers to browse outfits and styles in the SERPs, before they click through to go to a website to buy a product.</p> <p><img src="https://1.bp.blogspot.com/-6yLcxIvOTic/V8nqErvVEFI/AAAAAAAAAFg/-_sSjgHzk6sDhL1OFghTjWH2TSloa35WQCLcB/s640/Shop%2Bthe%2BLook%2BB2B.gif" alt="shop the look" width="250"></p> <p><strong>Planning trips</strong></p> <p><a href="http://www.koddi.com/google-launches-trip-planning/">Noticed by Trent Cockerham</a> early this year and detailed partly in <a href="https://adwords.googleblog.com/2016/07/making-travel-and-shopping-easier-for.html">a July 2016 update</a> from Google, planning trips can be done within the Google SERPs interface.</p> <p>A combination of cards, radios and filters allows users to filter flights and hotels (by rating, price, dates) and define their interests for the trip.</p> <p><em>Images via the Koddi blog</em></p> <p><img src="https://assets.econsultancy.com/images/0007/9202/canada_destinations.png" alt="canada destinations in google search" width="300" height="533">  <img src="https://assets.econsultancy.com/images/0007/9203/vancouver_search.png" alt="vancouver card" width="300" height="533"></p> <p><strong>Finding the best deal</strong></p> <p>According to Google's July 2016 blog post, 'when searching for a hotel, you may now see a "Deal" label calling out when a hotel’s price is lower than usual compared to historical pricing or when there are discounts to the normal rate for those dates.'</p> <p>Similarly, Google offers tips, when chaning the dates of your trip could be advantageous: 'We may show Tips to people when they could save money or find better availability by moving their dates slightly. For example, you may see a Tip like, “Save $105 if you stay Wed, Jul 13 - Fri, Jul 15”.'</p> <p>Users can also opt in to track fare changes within Google Flights, with notifications being received via email or Google Now cards.</p> <h3>Why is faceted search important for marketers?</h3> <p>In the first instance, providing Google with accurate information via <a href="https://econsultancy.com/blog/64778-what-is-schema-markup-and-why-should-you-be-using-it/">Schema markup</a> and <a href="https://developers.google.com/search/docs/guides/intro-structured-data">structured data</a> is increasingly important to aid conversion from the SERPs.</p> <p>But, as time goes on, faceted search will turn into something different, will become increasingly device independent, and searches will less and less often result in a visit to a website.</p> <p>Essentially, websites and apps (now being indexed and offered 'instantly' without download, via <a href="https://econsultancy.com/blog/67866-five-implications-of-android-instant-apps-for-marketers/">Android Instant Apps</a>) may become publishing tools for some companies, but not the point of access for the consumer.</p> <p>This can be seen in conversational search and the emergence of intelligent personal assistants such as Alexa.</p> <p>Indeed, watch the video below about Viv, and you'll hear the prediction that app stores will decline and marketplaces on voice activated personal assistants will predominate.</p> <p>That means that developers will have to provide information to services like Viv, such that Viv can learn to offer your services.</p> <p><iframe src="https://www.youtube.com/embed/Rblb3sptgpQ?wmode=transparent" width="560" height="315"></iframe></p> <p>So, if you're not playing around with APIs already, maybe now is the time to start.</p> <p>Once your content has to be understood by machines, not merely presented to customers via a visual interface, this has dramatic implications for data and content strategy.</p> tag:econsultancy.com,2008:TrainingDate/3094 2016-09-13T06:03:11+01:00 2016-09-13T06:03:11+01:00 Masterclass in Lead Generation - Singapore <p>B2B (Business-to-business) brands are increasingly turning to digital marketing tactics to generate leads, build demand, grow opportunities, engage prospects, and retain customers. As B2B marketing is significantly different from B2C marketing, this workshop aims to specifically address the unique issues and challenges faced by B2B marketers on digital platforms and social media.</p> <p>This 2-day intensive workshop explores how digital marketing can help B2B companies to fill the sales funnel with qualified leads, engage prospects in the buying journey, nurture leads, integrate with sales efforts and measure results.</p> tag:econsultancy.com,2008:BlogPost/68265 2016-09-09T11:52:27+01:00 2016-09-09T11:52:27+01:00 How do you put a price on digital content? Nikki Gilliland <p>But how exactly do you measure greatness? Here's a brief overview of <a href="http://www.slideshare.net/SimonBennison/how-do-you-put-a-price-on-digital-content/1">Simon's talk</a>.</p> <h3>Consider the scales of marketing justice </h3> <p>Out of the 37% of spend that goes on digital marketing (compared to 63% for traditional marketing), content is said to account for just 4%. </p> <p>This is simply because, despite the fact that <a href="https://econsultancy.com/reports/paid-search-marketing-ppc-best-practice-guide/">paid search</a> is expensive, it is almost guaranteed to work (even if the content <em>is</em> mediocre) so that's where marketers invest their money.</p> <p>However, what many brands fail to realise is that this only yields short term gain – not long term success. </p> <p><a href="http://www.slideshare.net/SimonBennison/how-do-you-put-a-price-on-digital-content?ref=https://twitter.com/i/cards/tfw/v1/772494466414415872?cardname=player&amp;autoplay_disabled=true&amp;forward=true&amp;earned=true&amp;lang=en&amp;card_height=130" target="_blank"><img src="https://assets.econsultancy.com/images/0007/8776/scales.jpg" alt="" width="780" height="438"></a></p> <h3>Play the long game</h3> <p>Instead of gambling on a short-term fix, it is incredibly important for brands to realise the value of investing both time and money in valuable content.</p> <p>As an example of why brands should play the long game, Simon cited Making a Murderer - the Netflix documentary that took 10 years to come to fruition.</p> <p>Despite a lack of funding or any real plan, the filmmakers stood firm in the knowledge that they were creating something truly remarkable to justify their long-standing commitment.</p> <p>By being truly dedicated to telling the story of Steven Avery, they proved how investment in great content can yield greater results. </p> <h3>Create a good strategy</h3> <p>In order to produce great content, a good strategy needs to first be put in place. </p> <p>But what exactly makes for a good strategy?</p> <p>Simon outlined a three-step approach to creating one. </p> <p><img src="https://assets.econsultancy.com/images/0007/8773/see.jpg" alt="" width="780" height="438"></p> <p>As well as being free of fluff (i.e. a superficial statement of the obvious combined with a generous sprinkling of buzzwords), a good strategy should always be centred around the consumer's needs.</p> <p>This 'See, Think, Do, Care' framework can help marketers work out where the content gaps are in their existing customer journeys.</p> <p><img src="https://assets.econsultancy.com/images/0007/8774/think.jpg" alt="" width="780" height="438"></p> <p>That same framework can not only define the content that needs to be created, but determine how much to invest.</p> <p>The steps are as follows:</p> <p><img src="https://assets.econsultancy.com/images/0007/8775/do.jpg" alt="" width="780" height="438"></p> <h3>Remember what a great campaign can achieve</h3> <p>Finally, when putting a price on content, it is important to remember what a great campaign can achieve (in comparison to a good one). </p> <p>What does a successful campaign look like? If this success comes in the form of shares or traffic – how much would you be willing to pay for it?</p> <p>Essentially, questions like these can help determine how much to invest.</p> <p>And if the results are truly great, it's going to be far more worthwhile in the long run.</p> <p><em>For more on content marketing, check out these resources:</em></p> <ul> <li><a href="https://econsultancy.com/training/courses/topics/content-marketing-and-strategy"><em>Content marketing training courses</em></a></li> <li><a href="https://econsultancy.com/blog/64539-introducing-the-periodic-table-of-content-marketing/"><em>Introducing The Periodic Table of Content Marketing</em></a></li> <li><a href="https://econsultancy.com/reports/the-future-of-content-marketing/"><em>The Future of Content Marketing</em></a></li> </ul> tag:econsultancy.com,2008:BlogPost/68277 2016-09-09T10:41:47+01:00 2016-09-09T10:41:47+01:00 All the digital news stories you missed this week Ben Davis <h3>Google helps us 'shop the look'</h3> <p style="font-weight: normal;">In July, Google rolled out <a href="https://adwords.googleblog.com/2016/07/making-travel-and-shopping-easier-for.html">Showcase Shopping ads</a> - for broad queries, Google gives us a carousel of different images from several retailers, which when clicked reveal a number of products from that brand.</p> <p style="font-weight: normal;">But Google is going further with so-called faceted search, with a Fashion Week experiment called '<a href="https://adwords.googleblog.com/2016/09/shop-look-on-google.html">shop the look</a>'.</p> <p style="font-weight: normal;">Search for a broad term such as 'party outfit' and Google will display photos of outfits from influencers.</p> <p style="font-weight: normal;">Clicking through will allow you to explore each product and purchase it from the relevant retailer.</p> <p style="font-weight: normal;">Here's an explainer GIF.</p> <p style="font-weight: normal;"><img src="https://1.bp.blogspot.com/-6yLcxIvOTic/V8nqErvVEFI/AAAAAAAAAFg/-_sSjgHzk6sDhL1OFghTjWH2TSloa35WQCLcB/s640/Shop%2Bthe%2BLook%2BB2B.gif" alt="google shop the look" width="311" height="640"></p> <h3>Snapchat preparing for AR hardware?</h3> <p><a href="https://www.ft.com/content/749ef144-7306-11e6-bf48-b372cdb1043a%20">The FT reports</a> that Snapchat has joined the industry group that runs the Bluetooth wireless standard, which is seen as another clue the company may move into hardware.</p> <p>This follows <a href="http://www.cnet.com/news/snapchat-glasses-vergence-snap-labs-hints-wearable/">a string of new recruits</a> with consumer electronics backgrounds, amongst rumours of augmented reality (AR) goggles.</p> <p>Of course, with Snapchat Lenses, the company already has experience with groundbreaking AR.</p> <h3>The Guardian launches prototype Messenger bot</h3> <p>I really enjoyed using the Guardian Messenger service. Simply search for Guardian in Facebook Messenger and then hit 'get started'.</p> <p>You can subscribe to a daily briefing through Messenger or ask for headlines or particular topics at any time.</p> <p>Stories are displayed in a swipeable carousel. The experience is uncluttered and as such I found it a nice change from using the app.</p> <p><img src="https://assets.econsultancy.com/images/0007/8951/IMG_3142.PNG" alt="guardian bot" width="300">  <img src="https://assets.econsultancy.com/images/0007/8950/IMG_3143.PNG" alt="guardian bot" width="300"></p> <h3>Amazon Restaurants enters the London delivery market</h3> <p>Amazon Prime members in London can now use the Prime Now app to get free one-hour restaurant deliveries (on orders over £15).</p> <p>More than 180 restaurants have signed up to <a href="https://www.amazon.co.uk/b/?node=10835299031">Amazon Restaurant</a>, which will deliver to 21 postcodes.</p> <p>With the takeaway market in the UK worth £9bn, there's plenty up for grabs.</p> <p><img src="https://assets.econsultancy.com/images/0007/8948/am_rest.jpg" alt="amazon restaurants" width="615"></p> <h3>Deliveroo rebrands</h3> <p>Food delivery service <a href="https://econsultancy.com/blog/68206-ubereats-vs-deliveroo-a-comparison-of-the-app-user-experience/">Deliveroo</a> has unveiled a colourful rebrand.</p> <p>The kangaroo has become more of a logo and the colours are a lot more fun.</p> <p><a href="https://www.marketingweek.com/2016/09/05/deliveroo-hopes-new-rebrand-will-reduce-controversy/">More from Marketing Week</a>.</p> <p><img src="https://assets.econsultancy.com/images/0007/8940/jerseys.jpg" alt="deliveroo jerseys" width="615" height="377"></p> <p><img src="https://assets.econsultancy.com/images/0007/8939/Screen_Shot_2016-09-08_at_15.32.04.png" alt="deliveroo website" width="615" height="335"></p> <h3>The new iPhone 7</h3> <p>Nothing too much to write home about, but enough to get me mildly excited - more storage, better camera, haptic home button, no headphone jack (lightning instead). </p> <p>Apple will hope its new headphones, the wireless Airpods, will be a popular option, with some pretty cool features (detailed in <a href="https://www.buzzfeed.com/nicolenguyen/this-is-how-apples-new-cord-free-airpods-work?utm_term=.luMJ03l3j#.cvLKLQ9QW">this BuzzFeed article</a>). </p> <h3>Veggie Pret pop-up to stay</h3> <p>We have previously reported on <a href="https://econsultancy.com/blog/67960-eight-ways-veggie-pret-innovated-pop-up-retail-strategy/">what a success London's Veggie Pret has been</a>, due in large part to social media.</p> <p>The rise in sales at the store means <a href="https://t.co/PptnmYkJj5">it is set to become a permanent feature</a>, with Pret already looking for its next veggie site in London. </p> <p>Pret is nominated for Brand of the Year in the 2016 Masters of Marketing awards and its Group Marketing Director will be speaking at the <a href="http://www.festivalofmarketing.com/welcome?utm_source=econsultancy&amp;utm_medium=blog&amp;utm_campaign=econ%20blog">Festival of Marketing</a>.</p> <p><img src="https://assets.econsultancy.com/images/0007/8949/pret.jpg" alt="veggie pret" width="615"></p> <h3>Is Spotify getting rid of unfettered free streaming?</h3> <p>In an effort to tie down long-term deals with record labels ahead of its rumoured IPO, <a href="http://nypost.com/2016/08/29/spotify-releases-some-new-music-to-paying-customers-only/">Spotify has apparently</a> been discussing making some music subscriber-only.</p> <p>This would happen with selected new music for a set time, after which all can listen.</p> <p>Spotify has 100m users, 39m of which pay $10 per month.</p> tag:econsultancy.com,2008:BlogPost/68271 2016-09-07T13:44:00+01:00 2016-09-07T13:44:00+01:00 10 useful takeaways from #BrightonSEO: Local search, AMP, content & more Ben Davis <h3>1. How to get started with AMP</h3> <p style="font-weight: normal;">Branded3's Stephen Kenwright suggests using <a href="https://en-gb.wordpress.org/plugins/pagefrog/">PageFrog</a>.</p> <p style="font-weight: normal;">The plugin converts HTML so it complies with both Facebook Instant Articles and AMP, allows for layout customization, as well as monetization.</p> <h3>2. YouTube keyword strategy</h3> <p>Phil Nottingham advised us to use playlists to rank for key phrases you don't have specific videos for.</p> <p>Here's a neat example from Jamie Oliver.</p> <p><img src="https://assets.econsultancy.com/images/0007/8841/Screen_Shot_2016-09-06_at_15.53.26.png" alt="youtube playlist" width="615" height="344"></p> <h3>3. SEO tools</h3> <p>Berian Reed, MD of Pure Optimisation, shared his favoured tools for SEO.</p> <ul> <li> <a href="https://www.deepcrawl.com/">DeepCrawl</a> for SEO project management.</li> <li> <a href="http://www.seomonitor.com/">SEOMonitor</a> to get more keyword data and revenue projections.</li> <li> <a href="https://www.distilledodn.com/">distilledODN</a> for split testing SEO.</li> <li>Your CEO for link building (yes, your actual CEO is your best tool to earn links, through interviews, outreach etc.).</li> <li> <a href="http://pureoptimisation.co.uk/keyword-expander/">Keyword Expander</a> for keyword research.</li> </ul> <h3>4. Content marketing guidelines</h3> <p style="font-weight: normal;">Martijn Scheijbeler of The Next Web <a href="http://pt.slideshare.net/MartijnScheijbeler/brighton-seo-september-2016">shared some insights</a> into how brands can approach content marketing like a publisher.</p> <p style="font-weight: normal;">Here are his six steps to content creation:</p> <ul> <li>Know your sources.</li> <li>Know your tone of voice.</li> <li>Come up with ideas; don't think too long.</li> <li>Measure what is important to you.</li> <li>Strategy depends on resources and scale.</li> <li>Think off platform.</li> </ul> <h3>5. Prioritising useful content</h3> <p>Stephen Kenwright also gave a lovely example of the power of useful content, which is most important, irrespective of word count or links to page.</p> <p>Searching for 'When do the clocks go back?', compare some of the newspapers' top returned pages with that of GOV.uk.</p> <p><em>GOV.uk's page is supremely functional, including dates, related content and add-to-calendar button.</em></p> <p><img src="https://assets.econsultancy.com/images/0007/8847/Screen_Shot_2016-09-07_at_09.02.19.png" alt="gov.uk page" width="615" height="426"></p> <p>Newspapers <a href="http://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/0/when-do-the-clocks-go-back-what-is-daylight-saving-time-and-why/">such as The Telegraph</a> offer longer waffly content designed to rank (and with plenty of internal links) but not suiting the user need as beautifully as above.</p> <p>Stephen gives a good comparison of GOV.uk with The Mirror's top returned page.</p> <p>The Mirror may have 8,500 more links, but its page for this term is pretty useless and the simple GOV.uk version ranks comfortably above it.</p> <p>A lesson for all there.</p> <p><img src="https://assets.econsultancy.com/images/0007/8828/Screen_Shot_2016-09-06_at_14.06.39.png" alt="when do the clocks go back" width="500"></p> <h3>6. Avoiding a site migration disaster</h3> <p>Jon Earnshaw, Pi Datametrics, spoke about <a href="https://econsultancy.com/blog/68116-five-key-points-to-consider-for-a-smooth-site-migration/">site migration</a>.</p> <p>Aside from the sensible entreaty to get SEO involved from the start, the following advice on preventing the staging site from 'getting out' caught my eye. </p> <ul> <li>Remember that robots.txt only blocks crawling not indexing.</li> <li>Use IP whitelisting.</li> <li>Require a login.</li> <li>Use a 'no index' meta tag.</li> </ul> <h3>7. Local search management</h3> <p>There has been 146% year-on-year growth in location searches on mobile (March 2016, <a href="https://www.thinkwithgoogle.com/articles/build-your-mobile-centric-search-strategy.html">Think With Google</a>).</p> <p>50% of local searchers end up in-store within a day (<a href="http://searchengineland.com/6-local-seo-stats-every-online-marketer-needs-know-226562">via Search Engine Land</a>).</p> <p>Using a location management platform like <a href="http://www.yext.com/">Yext</a> will update store data simultaneously across locations, post content to Facebook Locations and Google My Business pages and create store locator pages on site/in app with minimal dev effort.</p> <h3>8. Google Shopping tips</h3> <p>Rob Watson of Supplyant offered some great tips for optimising Google Shopping campaigns.</p> <p>My favourites were tests showing the effectiveness of longer 150-character product titles and the use of the URL redirect attribute to send users to a category page rather than the product page (which increased conversion by capturing browse-stage shoppers on broader terms).</p> <p><a href="https://econsultancy.com/blog/68264-six-clever-ways-to-optimise-google-shopping-campaigns/">Here's all the detail from Rob's talk</a>.</p> <p><img src="https://assets.econsultancy.com/images/0007/8807/Screen_Shot_2016-09-06_at_09.29.22.png" alt="google shopping" width="615" height="506"></p> <h3>9. Emerging forms of search</h3> <p>Tom Anthony gave us a nice roundup of three emerging forms of search.</p> <p><strong>Ambient search</strong></p> <p>This is the trend that Google Now started a while back.</p> <p>Google's <a href="https://backchannel.com/googles-secret-study-to-find-out-our-needs-eba8700263bf#.nfd2tlw73">own studies</a> show that a third of potential searches go unfulfilled for any one user.</p> <p>Ubiquitous personalisation is one way to address this, providing more relevant information through an increasing variety of devices.</p> <p><strong>Faceted search</strong></p> <p>This is how Tom termed the phenomenon of the results pages capturing more of the funnel.</p> <p>Direct answers are now available in search through the Knowledge Graph, essentially negating clickthrough to a website proper.</p> <p>Conversational search is also one part of faceted search, with answers provided directly without a website visited. Microsoft’s Purna Virji predicted at BrightonSEO that by 2020, 50% of searches will come from voice.</p> <p>The natural progression of faceted search is an experience that will capture more of the funnel - i.e. the filter and sort phase of ecommerce.</p> <p><strong>Transactional search</strong></p> <p>Sticking with ecommerce, search is set to collapse the funnel. Tom referred to this as transactional search.</p> <p>Checking out within the SERPs will negate web search altogether, and will be a large part of conversational search.</p> <p>Combining all three (ambient, faceted and transactional search), Tom imagined the scenario of talking to a personal assistant.</p> <p>Saying, "Okay Alexa, buy the cheapest five star washing powder that will arrive before Friday," requires Alexa to know information about billing and delivery, to find the best product and to complete a purchase (after understanding the language of the query, of course).</p> <h3>10. User-generated content</h3> <p>How can you get your audience to create content for you?</p> <p>Sophie Turton gave some excellent examples for inspiration, including <a href="http://www.modcloth.com/style-gallery/users/1791277">Mod Cloth's community of reviewers</a> and Nintendo's Super Mario Maker (a game based on letting gamers create their own levels).</p> <p><a href="https://econsultancy.com/blog/68263-three-ways-brands-can-let-their-audience-create-their-content/">Here's a rundown of Sophie's talk</a>.</p> <p><img src="https://assets.econsultancy.com/images/0007/8784/Screen_Shot_2016-09-05_at_14.12.27.png" alt="mod cloth" width="615" height="412"></p> tag:econsultancy.com,2008:BlogPost/68255 2016-09-02T11:32:00+01:00 2016-09-02T11:32:00+01:00 10 astounding digital marketing stats from this week Nikki Gilliland <p>Now, let’s get to it.</p> <h3>Searches for iPhone 7 are lower than iPhone 6 ahead of release </h3> <p>Ahead of the pre-sale for the new iPhone 7, Connexity's Hitwise has revealed what Brits are hoping to see from the new model.</p> <p>As consumers debate whether to update current smartphones, the most-searched for queries relate to new features and specs. </p> <p>Comparisons between iPhone 7 and Samsung Galaxy account for a 0.10% share of searches, while 'camera' accounts for 0.30%.</p> <p>Despite searches for the iPhone 7 increasing since May, it is at a lower rate overall compared to the launch of the iPhone 6.</p> <p>This is thought to be due to Apple’s plans to postpone all major updates ahead of the brand's 10th anniversary.</p> <p><img src="https://assets.econsultancy.com/images/0007/8698/iPhone.png" alt="" width="533" height="281"></p> <h3>Transport brands offer worst customer experience in the UK </h3> <p>A new survey by Engine found that transport companies offer the poorest customer service in the UK, with 38% of consumers citing train operators as the worst culprits.</p> <p>In contrast, 45% of respondents cited food services and restaurants as offering the best customer experience. </p> <p>With 66% of people likely to recommend a company based on a good customer experience, it appears CX is being prioritised over factors like price and convenience.</p> <h3>Digital economy behind rapid growth for Wales</h3> <p>Analysis by law firm Nockolds has revealed that Wales has the fastest-growing digital economy outside of London.</p> <p>While the overall number of digital companies remains low, rising from 3,000 to 3,275, it has seen a rapid growth of 9%. </p> <p>In the same amount of time, London saw a rise of 11%.</p> <p>Now with 600 firms in the IT sector, around 3.5% of the Welsh workforce is estimated to work in technology.</p> <p><img src="https://assets.econsultancy.com/images/0007/8700/Wales.JPG" alt="" width="607" height="345"></p> <h3>63% of drone use comes from the media industry</h3> <p>According to a new study by DronesDirect.co.uk, the use of drone technology for day-to-day business is on the rise.</p> <p>Out of an estimated half a million Brits using drones for commercial purposes, the media industry is responsible for 63%. This is typically for the purpose of taking aerial photography and videography. </p> <p>Other industries currently using drones includes facilities and management firms and surveillance companies, however, ahead of the launch of Amazon’s Prime Air parcel delivery service, delivery is predicted to be a large area of growth.</p> <h3>Asia is 80% more likely to be targeted by hackers</h3> <p>An investigation by US company Mandiant has found that Asian organisations have the worst cybersecurity in the world.</p> <p>In analysis of 22,000 machines, the average amount of time between a cyber breach and its discovery was 520 days – three times the global average.</p> <p>In each attack, an average of 3.7GB of data was stolen.</p> <p>With the bulk predicted to be due to rising geopolitical tensions in Asia, meanwhile, there has been a decline in the number of similar attacks to the US and Europe.</p> <p><img src="https://assets.econsultancy.com/images/0007/8699/Mandiant.JPG" alt="" width="466" height="473"></p> <h3>Medium-sized companies cite the IT skills gap as one of the biggest risks for the future</h3> <p>In the wake of Brexit, fears are growing over the declining number of IT graduates entering the UK workforce. </p> <p>According to ICTrated, despite major advances in fields like artificial intelligence, a quarter of the population don’t have the digital skills companies need. </p> <p>In fact, medium-sized businesses have identified the IT skills gap as one of the top three biggest risks for the next sdecade.</p> <p>Combined with the growing trend for flexible and freelance working, businesses fear a lack of staff stability.</p> <h3>Rio beats London to win online viewing record</h3> <p>Data from PEPPTV has shown that the Rio Olympics broke records for the amount of viewers watching online.</p> <p>With BBC Sport seeing a total of 102m unique global users, it was the biggest ever success for the service, meaning that overall, Rio beat London for online views.</p> <p>Viewing figures for the opening ceremony also show that live TV remains a huge asset for broadcasters.</p> <p>The games kicked off with a 74-75% audience share in Australia and Finland, as well as more than 50% in the UK and Netherlands. </p> <p><img src="https://assets.econsultancy.com/images/0007/8702/bbc_sport.JPG" alt="" width="700" height="376"></p> <h3>Europeans over 50 are less open to emotional advertising </h3> <p>According to a survey by Commerz Finanz, only 43% of European consumers over the age of 50 respond to emotional advertising.</p> <p>This is in comparison to 56% of younger consumers.</p> <p>The survey, taken across 13 European countries, also found that the older demographic are less inclined to make spontaneous purchases - instead preferring to carry out extensive digital research beforehand.</p> <p>With the over 65s predicted to account for 30% of the population by 2050, markets are increasingly changing in favour of older consumers.</p> <h3>Social media is contributing to an unhappy generation </h3> <p>A <a href="http://www.childrenssociety.org.uk/what-we-do/research/the-good-childhood-report" target="_blank">new report</a> from the Children’s Society has suggested that social media is creating a new generation of ‘serious’ young people.</p> <p>In a study on the happiness levels of teenagers across the UK, the charity found that 14% of 10-15 year old girls are unhappy in general, with 34% unhappy about their appearance in particular.</p> <p>With some girls spending up to three hours every night on social media, online pressures are said to be a huge factor.</p> <p>This is reflected by the fact that the mental well-being of girls has worsened since 2005.</p> <p><img src="https://assets.econsultancy.com/images/0007/8701/social_kids.jpg" alt="" width="650" height="433"></p> <h3>Page load times increase 7%, while consumers become even more impatient</h3> <p>According to research by Dynatrace, just half a second difference in page load times can result in a 10% difference in sales for ecommerce companies.</p> <p>Despite this, page-load times have been getting slower, going up by 7% over the last year.</p> <p>This is in contrast to the declining patience of consumers, who are reportedly unwilling to wait more than three seconds before jumping ship.</p> <p>Chat functionality and connections to Google, Facebook and Twitter are said to be behind slow load times, particularly in countries like Australia where data has to travel large distances.</p>