By Liz Alton
‘Tis the season for the holidays, consumer spending, and major ecommerce traffic increases. Over the next several weeks, the National Retail Federation estimates consumers will spend a staggering $655.8 billion, or just over $935 per person on gifts, services, and other holiday expenses. The weeks leading up to Thanksgiving, Christmas, and other winter holidays will see a definite spike online: the NRF estimates online shopping will rise between 7% and 10% this year, reaching $117 billion.
What does this spike in activity mean for busy marketers who are focusing on conversion optimization? Can you conduct CRO testing during the holiday season without losing sales? Read More >>
The tools that Optimizely gives you out of the box are excellent for lead gen or e-commerce sites. And while conversion metrics can and should be used for media sites, more often than not you’ll also want to be able to track the effect of any given experiment on pages per session.
The problem is that Optimizely, in most cases, will only let you track differences in whether or not a single event happened — a conversion. Optimizely also has built-in support for tracking the difference in revenue per visitor, but not for the difference in the average of any other metric that you might be interested in.
For the purposes of this post, I’ll be writing about how to get around that specifically for pages per session, but this can be used for any metric that can be tracked in Google Analytics.
To get started, we’ll need to start tracking pages per session as a dimension in GA. Google Analytics will already track Pages Per Session as a metric, but since we’ll need the distribution in order to perform the analysis of the data we’ll need to track it as a dimension.
First, we need to create the dimension in GA.
Open up your Google Analytics account and click on the admin section.
Next, go the “Property” panel and click on “Custom Definitions” then “Custom Dimensions.”
By Peter Boyle
B2B marketing is undergoing huge changes.
Thanks to the developments in marketing technology B2B strategies have had to adapt to evolving purchaser desires. The traditional approach to B2B marketing is, if we’re being honest, dry and dull. It’s always aimed at the professional, who apparently is a very boring person.
There seems to be an unwritten rule in traditional B2B that dictates the message to every person needs be delivered with professional courtesy that ultimately robs it of anything resembling personality.
But the times, they are a-changing. What you’ve got to remember is, while your primary B2B prospects are being approached in their professional capacity, they’re still a consumer. And thanks to the popularisation of channels including social media these B2B buyers expect a ‘consumer-like’ experience to the marketing materials they receive.
It’s something the B2B world is catching on to. If you take a look at the developing budgetary trends, you’ll see that while marketing campaign budgets are set to rise by 5% over the next year, those for digital marketing are projected to increase three times as fast.
That budget is largely going to be funneled into your content marketing strategy; the production of blog posts, white papers, eBooks, etc. However, the shift in buyer expectations has an increasing number of business recognizing the importance of social media content.
By Peter Boyle
How well do you understand your prospect’s behavior and expectations?
Do you know and understand the difference in behavior between your top and bottom funnel prospects? Can you accurately describe how to align your marketing for those different stages of desire and when to shift from your marketing phase into your sales phase?
I ask because a lot of marketing managers can’t. They’re not fully aware of each stage within their funnel and how it affects behavior and expectations.
Too many marketing managers take an overly simplistic view of funnel progression and prospect expectations. They attract prospects with top funnel campaigns and shift immediately into pushing for the sale. This rarely works. Read More >>
By Peter Boyle
Is traditional advertising dead?
That’s the question I’ve been asking myself recently.
For years, marketers have been relying on the exposure approach. It was all about getting your message and product out there and in front of as many pairs of eyes as possible.
But, as with any business practice, things change.
There’s been a slow but deliberate shift away from traditional advertising. Results consistently show that this quantity over quality approach isn’t all that effective. Read More >>
By Peter Boyle
How satisfied are your customers?
In our efforts to increase conversions and revenue, we often overlook questions like this. We’ll instead focus on landing page optimization, look at conversion rates and roll out split tests on our email campaigns.
There’s this implicit belief that the only real metric that contributes to revenue increase is conversion rate. It’s true to an extent. The higher your conversions, the more money you bring in.
But conversion rate isn’t the be all end all for making a little more money. There are myriad other elements that contribute to a healthy turnover, chief among them, customer satisfaction.
“How do satisfied customers help my bottom line?” you might ask. Well, the benefit of having a satisfied and content consumer base is three-fold.
By Peter Boyle
There was a time when real estate agents had unrivaled power.
You were the gatekeeper. You held all the cards when it came to property information, neighborhood advice, and the all-important property listings.
If someone had any questions pertaining to property, be it about purchasing, renting or just understanding more about the industry, it was you they had to see. But then things started to change.
In 1994, listings were made public. Your control of the local real estate industry had taken a hit. But no matter, while prospects had access to listings, you were still the font of knowledge and the only place where consumers could go to properly understand the confusing world of property sales. Read More >>
It’s easy to see B2B and B2C marketing as completely different animals.
After all, that’s how their customers have behaved over the years.
The common thinking: it’s easier to sway B2C customers with media, ads, and special offers. They care about brands, but most of the time, switching between them is not a big deal if they’re not happy with their experience.
B2B customers, on the other hand, do extensive research. They care about the technical specs of your product. If they decide to buy, it’s often done through a formal procurement process. Once they become your customer, they tend to stick with you for a longer time because switching to a different provider can disrupt their workflow.
This explains why B2B has moved slower than B2C sales in responding to changing technologies, trends, and customer preferences…
However, continuing along that slower path today leads to some serious missed opportunities.
Traditional B2B strategies – from cold calling and direct mail to relying on word-of-mouth referrals – still have their place and can be effective. But you can supercharge your sales if you’re willing to integrate a few new concepts to help you adjust to today’s rapidly-changing B2B environment.
By Peter Boyle
Online shopping’s pretty awesome, right?
No need to traipse around a store, carry heavy bags or navigate the multitude of other shoppers desperate for a deal. It is simple, easy and straightforward.
But there’s a problem.
It seems to me there are too many copywriters out there who depend on the convenience of online shopping to do their job for them. Rather than properly optimizing their product descriptions they take the easy way out and simply list a few features. These descriptions are, for lack of a better description, interminably dull.
“But wait,” you say, “that’s what a product description is, it describes the features of the product.” Yes, you are right. A product description should describe the product. But that is not all they are trying to achieve. The real purpose of your product description is to sell.
You probably don’t have a shortage of data about your customers.
If anything, the challenge is organizing and interpreting it well enough to pull out valuable insights.
How can you turn huge chunks of information into concrete action to better serve your customers and improve your business?
Businesses who do this have a tremendous advantage over their competitors. They make more sales because they do a better job delivering exactly what their customers want: a seamless, user-friendly experience.
Analytics tools tell you where customers come from, their demographics, and what they do on your website. Other technologies, such as marketing automation, layer this data to spot valuable trends.
But there are still plenty of unknowns in how people make the journey all the way from first-time visitors to loyal customers and brand advocates.
What are they thinking along the way?
What information do they need at critical times?
What could you do to make the process smoother?
These are key gaps in the analytics landscapes. Hidden inside those gaps is the story of how people start as strangers and end up as customers – and all their motivations and emotional triggers along the way.
Mapping your customers’ journey can reveal that story…
And there’s no better time to start than now.