tag:econsultancy.com,2008:/topics/search-marketing Latest Search Marketing content from Econsultancy 2017-04-20T01:01:00+01:00 tag:econsultancy.com,2008:BlogPost/69008 2017-04-20T01:01:00+01:00 2017-04-20T01:01:00+01:00 Which channels do marketers really use? Jeff Rajeck <p>Part of what makes marketing interesting is that the discipline is constantly evolving. Hardly a week goes by without some major change to a consumer service or a new way to use a platform to engage with our audiences.</p> <p>Yet sometimes the pace of change can be overwhelming. It's often difficult to both keep up with the latest innovations and stay on top of daily marketing tasks.</p> <p>To find out just how necessary it is for marketers to be familiar with the latest platforms, <strong>we surveyed over 200 marketers in Australia and New Zealand about the channels they use for their marketing efforts</strong>. Below are some of the surprising findings along with some commentary.</p> <p>For more data from the survey please refer to the Econsultancy report, <a href="https://econsultancy.com/reports/cross-channel-marketing-in-australia-and-new-zealand">Cross-Channel Marketing in ANZ</a>, produced in association with IBM Marketing Cloud.</p> <h3>1. Conventional digital channels still rule</h3> <p>First off, the survey results make it clear that <strong>marketers are most frequently using familiar digital touchpoints for their marketing efforts</strong>. Social media, email, and SEO (natural search) are all used by more than eight in ten marketers (87%, 87%, 81% respectively).</p> <p><img src="https://assets.econsultancy.com/images/0008/5487/top__5_channels.png" alt="" width="800" height="514"></p> <p>One reason these channels are the most popular is because <strong>companies tend to use channels which are well-understood and easy to integrate into overall marketing activity.</strong></p> <p>The conventional channels are also where the brands' customers are spending their time.   </p> <ul> <li> <strong>Email</strong>: According to the <a href="http://www.radicati.com/wp/wp-content/uploads/2015/02/Email-Statistics-Report-2015-2019-Executive-Summary.pdf">Radicati group</a>, more than 2.5bn people use email every month.  </li> <li> <strong>Social</strong>: The largest global social network, Facebook, <a href="http://money.cnn.com/2017/02/01/technology/facebook-earnings/">is now approaching 2bn monthly active users (MAUs)</a>.</li> <li> <strong>Search</strong>: Google has announced that its search platform has <a href="http://www.theverge.com/2016/2/1/10889492/gmail-1-billion-google-alphabet">at least 1bn MAUs</a>.</li> </ul> <p>When the usage of these platforms is compared to, say, Snapchat, we can easily see why marketers are so much more likely to use them.</p> <p><img src="https://assets.econsultancy.com/images/0008/5486/1.png" alt="" width="800" height="371"></p> <h3>2. Offline touchpoints are still relied upon by many brands</h3> <p>A somewhat surprising result from the survey is that <strong>offline touchpoints are still a significant part of the marketing mix.</strong> While point-of-sale and call centres are only used by around one in three companies (34% and 31% respectively), traditional media and events are used by significantly more (47%, 71% respectively).</p> <p>The popularity of offline touchpoints makes a bit more sense when data from <a href="https://www.consumerbarometer.com">recent research from Google</a> is considered.</p> <p>Google recently surveyed consumers in Australia and New Zealand and reported that only <strong>just over half of consumers (58% Australia, 53% New Zealand) used an online channel to research or purchase a product.</strong></p> <p><img src="https://assets.econsultancy.com/images/0008/5489/google1.png" alt="" width="800" height="348"></p> <p>So to reach customers where they are likely to research their products and buy them, marketers must still operate offline to a significant extent.</p> <h3>3. Mobile is not as popular as you might think</h3> <p>Another interesting survey result is that mobile touchpoints are less popular in Australia and New Zealand than offline channels.</p> <p>Though the mobile web is used by nearly half (49%) of client-side respondents, mobile messaging, mobile apps, messaging apps and mobile push notifications are each only part of less than one in four companies' marketing efforts (23%, 22%, 10%, 7%, respectively).</p> <p>This apparent lack of enthusiasm for mobile is even more confusing considering the relatively high penetration of smartphones in the region. More than <a href="https://www.statista.com/statistics/257041/smartphone-user-penetration-in-australia/">80% in Australia</a> and <a href="http://www.researchnz.com/pdf/special%20reports/research%20new%20zealand%20special%20report%20-%20use%20of%20smartphones.pdf">70%  in New Zealand</a> use mobile devices with internet connectivity.</p> <p>But going back to Google's Consumer Barometer data offers a reasonable explanation. When asked where in the buying cycle did people use a smartphone, <strong>fewer than 50% use a smartphone for anything at all in the buying cycle and only around 10% use a smartphone for buying.</strong></p> <p><img src="https://assets.econsultancy.com/images/0008/5490/google2.png" alt="" width="800" height="185"></p> <p>So while there is a lot of advice out there about how brands should 'embrace' mobile and aim to be 'mobile-first', <strong>i</strong><strong>t seems that consumers are not quite there yet with mobile. </strong></p> <h3>4. Messaging apps hardly appear on brands' radars</h3> <p>From our data, it seems that the biggest chasm between conventional wisdom and reality concerns messaging apps. If you read the tech press, you'd be forgiven for thinking that messaging apps dominated our culture and each change to these apps affects millions of lives. Marketers, one might think, should be flocking to them in droves.</p> <p>While there is some chance that this is <a href="https://econsultancy.com/blog/68429-six-things-marketers-should-know-about-social-media-in-asia-pacific/">true in China</a>, <strong>marketers in Australia and New Zealand indicated that messaging apps are not popular channels for marketing in the region.</strong> A mere 10% of client-side marketers use messaging apps and only 15% of agency marketers said the same.</p> <p>From other data, it's clear that the problem with messaging apps isn't consumer interest. <a href="http://www.onmsg.com.au/">According to messaging app agency On Message</a>, Australia will have over 11m messaging app users in 2017 and messaging apps are the primary form of contact for more than half (54%) of 15-19 year olds in the country.</p> <p><img src="https://assets.econsultancy.com/images/0008/5491/On_Message.png" alt="" width="800" height="234"></p> <p>Instead, it is much more likely that <strong>messaging apps are still simply too difficult to use for marketing.</strong> Besides some basic self-service ads on Facebook Messenger, engaging with messaging users requires dedicated resource to build contact lists, 'man' the consumer outreach or customer service desk, and build bots to handle incoming traffic.</p> <p>This is not to say that marketing via messaging apps will never happen, but rather that it is likely that it will be some time before most brands have to worry about engaging their customers on these platforms.</p> tag:econsultancy.com,2008:BlogPost/68947 2017-04-13T10:27:40+01:00 2017-04-13T10:27:40+01:00 Automating SEO: An introduction to Python Ben Davis <p>At a conference where artificial intelligence and voice search seemed to be the topics on everyone's lips, I found Valentinova's talk refreshing in its advocacy of just getting on and setting up some simple (ish) alerts to make your workflow more manageable. </p> <h4>What is Python?</h4> <p>Python is a very popular open-source computer programming language, supported by a large community of programmers. It has been used, amongst many other things, in natural language processing and as the main user language for the Raspberry Pi.</p> <p>Python is one of the chief languages for scripts, but if, like me, you've only ever messed about with HTML and CSS, you can take heart from Python's philosophy as described in the Zen of Python:</p> <ul> <li>Beautiful is better than ugly</li> <li>Explicit is better than implicit</li> <li>Simple is better than complex</li> <li>Complex is better than complicated</li> <li>Readability counts </li> </ul> <h4>What use is Python for the typical SEO?</h4> <p>You may already use third-party software such as Screaming Frog, and Valentinova posed the question, "Isn’t that enough?" Well, she says, not always. Scripts allow the SEO to be proactive, not reactive, receiving notifications at any time.</p> <p>Python scripts can be used to automate repetitive but necessary tasks. You might use them to compare canonical URLs or to look for changes in indexation. Or alternatively you may want to scrape competitor pages and keep an eye on changes to their products and pricing.</p> <p>Similarly, you could use Python to check on your own data, such as headings and structured data. Valentinova gave one example, citing instances where multiple content editors are making changes to data on key product pages. In this scenario, the SEO may not receive notifications to make them aware of these changes. If the changes aren't communicated to the SEO team, it could impact rankings, and therefore a script can be used to provide a timely alert. </p> <p>The Python script parses HTML and compares current value with expected values, sending an email alert that highlights any discrepancies. This type of activity could be taken further and used to send a regular update to your manager or stakeholder.</p> <h4>Worried this might be too technical?</h4> <p>Valentinova points out that you don’t need to use code on a daily basis, you simply have to set up some of these scripts and then sit back and enjoy the benefits of proactive management.</p> <p>There's a <a href="http://www.alfianita.me/python-for-seo-checks-meta-data/">detailed methodology on Valentinova's blog</a> (including a script download), guiding you through step-by-step to run an example script that checks for metadata changes. It breaks down simply as follows:</p> <ul> <li>Download and install Python.</li> <li>Download Valentinova's example metadata script.</li> <li>Create an .xlsx input file which is simply a list of URLs and the page title and meta description you expect to see.</li> <li>Add your email address and login details and the input file name to the config file.</li> <li>Make sure your Gmail account will allow the script to access it (turn 'less secure apps' on).</li> <li>Use command line to download the necessary Python libraries (these allow for certain functionality, such as sending emails).</li> <li>Run the script.</li> </ul> <p>After you've got to grips with this example, Valentinova recommends a number of other resources, including the creative commons manual <a href="https://automatetheboringstuff.com/">Automate the Boring Stuff with Python</a> and urllib2, a Python module that can be used to fetch URLs.</p> <h4>Spend time finding the solution not the problem</h4> <p>As Valentinova infectiously pointed out, there's lots you can do with Python and it doesn't have to be a daunting experiment. Ultimately, once you've mastered a few alerts, you can reduce the manual checks you have to do, and spend more time finding the solution rather than the problem.</p> <p>In the words of Valentinova, "automation is not a silver bullet, but SEO is a race" - Python is simply a way of getting a headstart.</p> <p><em>For more on this topic, check out these Econsultancy resources:</em></p> <ul> <li><a href="https://econsultancy.com/reports/seo-best-practice-guide/"><em>Search Engine Optimization (SEO) Best Practice Guide</em></a></li> <li><a href="https://econsultancy.com/training/courses/topics/search-marketing/"><em>Search Marketing Training</em></a></li> </ul> tag:econsultancy.com,2008:BlogPost/68984 2017-04-11T10:00:00+01:00 2017-04-11T10:00:00+01:00 How visual search is helping ecommerce brands Nikki Gilliland <p>I attended Brighton SEO last week, where Purma Virji from Microsoft gave a talk all about this topic. </p> <p>So, what exactly is visual search, and more specifically, how is it changing the way we buy online? With inspiration from Purma’s talk, here’s a bit of elaboration on the subject along with a few brand examples.</p> <h3>Visual search + artificial intelligence</h3> <p>Visual search works by comparing the pixels in imagery to identify and return results that are similar. </p> <p>So, instead of typing in a keyword such as ‘black mini dress’ - which will return thousands of general results – users can upload an image to help narrow it down to something much more specific.</p> <p>This technology is not brand new – you might recall Google Goggles being launched way back in 2010. Zappos also introduced a way to visually navigate through its vast shoe collection in 2009.</p> <p>More recently, however, advancements in artificial intelligence have meant that visual search is becoming much slicker, with the ability to compute more data at a much quicker rate. Purma coined the term ‘visual intelligence’ to describe this rapidly improving technology. In 2016, Bing added visual search to its app.</p> <h3>What are the benefits for ecommerce brands?</h3> <h4>Social discovery</h4> <p>According to research by Accenture, social media will become the preferred shopping channel for <a href="https://econsultancy.com/blog/68554-how-retailers-are-targeting-generation-z/" target="_blank">Generation Z</a>, with <a href="https://newsroom.accenture.com/news/generation-z-to-switch-the-majority-of-purchases-to-retailers-that-provide-the-newest-digital-tools-and-channels-accenture-research-reveals.htm" target="_blank">69% of young consumers</a> interested in purchasing directly through social networks.</p> <p>Visual search could offer a breakthrough for social sales. Pinterest’s Lens feature allows consumers to search, discover and shop even more products based on a single image. In turn, this presents a greater opportunity for ecommerce brands looking to drive purchases from the platform.</p> <h4>Capturing the spearfisher </h4> <p>Visual search is a particularly great tool for shoppers who are looking for a specific item – also known as ‘spearfishers’. This is because it reduces the amount of steps the user would otherwise have to go through, such as typing in a keyword or scrolling through results. Instead, the desired product is immediately brought to the shopper’s attention.</p> <p>In turn, visual search could also help to reduce basket abandonment, eliminating the tedious processes that usually frustrate and annoy users.</p> <h4>Cross-selling and inspiration</h4> <p>Another benefit of visual search is that it can be a great cross-selling tool. If a website does not have a desired product in stock, it is able to show similar or related items that might still prompt a purchase. Moreover, it can also help consumers to imagine how other products might complement it. For instance, someone might search for a red dress, but if they see an image of a woman wearing a red dress <em>and</em> a bag that completes the entire look – they might be inclined to buy more than originally intended. </p> <p>Another example is home décor, with consumers commonly using <a href="https://econsultancy.com/blog/68765-why-brands-should-be-making-more-use-of-pinterest/" target="_blank">Pinterest</a> to visualise or plan an entire room rather than just search and buy a single item.</p> <h3>Ecommerce brands using visual search </h3> <p>So, how are brands using the technology? Here are just a few examples to appear so far.</p> <h4>Amazon</h4> <p>Amazon introduced visual search into its main iOS app in 2014 (and with the Firefly app on the ill-fated Fire phone), giving users the option to search using their smartphone camera. It is mainly designed to capture the ‘showrooming’ shopper – someone who is visiting a physical store but checking comparison prices online.</p> <p>While it doesn't recognise every single item (especially if unboxed), reviews suggest that it's particularly good for recognising images like DVDs or records.</p> <p><img src="https://assets.econsultancy.com/images/0008/5351/Amazon.JPG" alt="" width="472" height="465"></p> <h4>Target</h4> <p>Target’s ‘In a Snap’ app also launched back in 2014, allowing users to shop for items from the pages of magazines and printed ads - removing the need to manually search for the product online.</p> <p>While this version doesn’t appear to be available anymore, Target’s main app also allows shoppers to scan barcodes in-store to view more information like reviews and ratings. Again, this speeds up the path to purchase, taking away the need to ask for further assistance from in-store employees.</p> <p><img src="https://assets.econsultancy.com/images/0008/5354/Target.JPG" alt="" width="600" height="315"></p> <h4>Neiman Marcus</h4> <p>Alongside fellow US retailer, Macy's, Neiman Marcus has increased its focus on visual search technology in recent years. Its app now allows users to upload photos to find similar styles to buy on the website.</p> <p><img src="https://assets.econsultancy.com/images/0008/5353/Neiman_Marcus.JPG" alt="" width="600" height="298"></p> <p>This taps into real-time demand, with consumers able to search and buy an item they like on-the-spot, whether it’s an outfit on a celebrity or someone passing by in the street. Camera-discretion is advised.</p> <p><em><strong>Now read:</strong></em></p> <ul> <li><a href="https://econsultancy.com/blog/68777-10-uses-of-computer-vision-in-marketing-customer-experience/">10 uses of computer vision in marketing and customer experience</a></li> <li><a href="https://www.econsultancy.com/blog/68919-how-visual-social-listening-is-helping-fmcg-and-beyond/">How visual listening is helping FMCG brands and beyond</a></li> </ul> tag:econsultancy.com,2008:ConferenceEvent/863 2017-03-26T15:24:36+01:00 2017-03-26T15:24:36+01:00 Digital Outlook 2017 Part 2 - The Sequel <p>We hear you, and we understand that there are still many digital marketing topics that were not covered at <a href="https://www.facebook.com/pg/Econsultancy/photos/?tab=album&amp;album_id=10154296603034327" target="_blank">Digital Outlook 2017</a>.</p> <p>We have selected the next six trending digital marketing topics to be presented at this event. Join us in this half day session to find out the trends and digital marketing best practices for the year.</p> <p>There will be 6 keynotes - all aiming to provide the audience with a outlook for the year.</p> <p>&gt;&gt;&gt; <strong>Overview of the 2017's trending digital marketing topics</strong></p> <p>&gt;&gt;&gt; <strong>Trends, best practices and c</strong><strong>ase studies</strong></p> <p>Hear from leading practitioners and network with industry players to learn what digital marketers should focus today to plan for tomorrow and succeed later.</p> <h4>Special Announcement</h4> <p>In partnership with NTUC, e2i and WSG, Econsultancy is carring out a research on <strong>digital marketing training and development needs in Singapore for 2017</strong>. Please help us improve our training courses by completing the short survey <a href="http://www.surveygizmo.com/s3/3421857/b9062f550750" target="_blank">here</a>. In return for your time, you can redeem a discount on Econsultancy training courses in Singapore. </p> tag:econsultancy.com,2008:BlogPost/68937 2017-03-24T15:05:08+00:00 2017-03-24T15:05:08+00:00 Stories from SXSW 2017: ad blocking, content distribution, and Joe Biden Nick Hammond <p>These looked at the areas of <a href="https://econsultancy.com/blog/67076-the-rise-and-rise-of-ad-blockers-stats/">ad blocking</a>, <a href="https://econsultancy.com/reports/the-rise-of-influencers/">influencer marketing</a>, social video, <a href="https://econsultancy.com/blog/66752-10-steps-to-better-content-distribution/">content distribution</a>, and the thoughts of Joe Biden, former Vice-President of the USA.</p> <p><strong><a href="http://schedule.sxsw.com/2017/events/PP67501">Ending The Ad Blocking Wars</a></strong></p> <p>The panel for this session included representatives from Brave Software, The New York Times, Digital Context Next and The Christian Science Monitor. They considered whether publishers can improve the ad experience to persuade readers to turn off blockers? Or will add blockers bring about the end of the free web?</p> <p>As you may imagine there was no simple solution to this conundrum. The two biggest players in the digital space (you know who they are) are not affected by ad blocking and therefore are not bothered by its effects. </p> <p>Although ad blocking is plateauing (<a href="http://www.campaignlive.co.uk/article/uk-ad-blocking-levels-stabilise-22/1425085?bulletin=campaign_breakfast_briefing&amp;utm_medium=EMAIL&amp;utm_campaign=eNews%20Bulletin&amp;utm_source=20170223&amp;utm_content=www_campaignlive_co_uk_ar_6">at least in the UK</a>), the real squeeze is on smaller publishers, the little guys getting caught in the middle. These organisations are caught in an imperfect storm, made up of greater reliance on ad revenues and lacking the engineering investment levels and knowledge to respond to the threat.</p> <p><img src="https://assets.econsultancy.com/images/resized/0008/5034/adblock-blog-flyer.png" alt="" width="470" height="163"></p> <p>As a result of this, there is a real possibility of local, smaller publishers, starting to disappear. This could create a regional ‘news desert’ as even more people seek their news from social media. Currently 44% of Americans use Facebook as a news source and the number is rising. </p> <p>There was also a discussion around different types of ad blockers. Much of the debate tends to be around the big players, such as AdBlock which has 200m downloads; but there are other providers with different business models. <a href="https://brave.com">Brave Software</a> (represented on the panel) doesn’t just remove ads – it replaces them with new ads and splits the revenue between publishers, users, network partners and the company itself.</p> <p>Brendan Eich from Brave suggested that this software is the first ‘post-bad’ ad blocking solution. Still early days for this, 'softer' ad blocking model and it will be interesting to see how it plays out.</p> <p>Predictably, content was identified as a way to get around this challenge. The NYT emphasized the importance of engaging content – ‘pull instead of push’ – and advised strongly against using technology to push advertising onto consumers.</p> <p>Sponsored ‘native’ content is not necessarily the panacea to solve this problem, as publishers often tag creative to acquire more data; these are then identified as ads and therefore blocked. </p> <p>Ad fraud was a serious related issue discussed, with an estimated 23% of global video traffic being served to robots. </p> <p><strong><a href="http://schedule.sxsw.com/2017/events/PP65228">The Hundred Thousand Dollar Snap(chat)</a></strong></p> <p>The panel for this one was ShopStyle and Neiman Marcus, who considered the opportunities and challenges arising from social commerce, as well as the <a href="https://econsultancy.com/reports/the-rise-of-influencers/">growing importance of influencers</a>, particularly within retail.</p> <p>The background to this is the change in consumers’ consumption of media and the importance of the mobile channel. 30% of all time online is spent on social and 60% of that is on mobile.  </p> <p><img src="https://assets.econsultancy.com/images/0008/5033/snapchat_logo.jpg" alt="" width="470" height="243"></p> <p>As is often not the case, influencer activity should be approached in the same manner as any other communications campaign. It is not safe to assume that a single endorsement – ‘one and done’ – will do the trick. An effective frequency of ‘seven’, was mentioned as appropriate to the fashion retail sector. As with other channels, planning should be considered over an extended activity period, not as a series of one-offs. </p> <p>In addition, activity should not undermine influencers connections with their followers, and these retail influencers can be initially incentivised through special deals to offer to their followers. </p> <p>An interesting analogy compared the purchasing process for expensive items, such as for a Chanel bag, to the dating process; where buyers return to the store to view and interact with the product over time. In instances like these, iterative influencer messages can be effective in moving an individual closer to purchase.</p> <p>Strategies need to be different across separate social channels. Facebook is all about advertising, whilst Instagram benefits from a more organic approach. Snapchat is the new kid on the block and the hardest to measure. </p> <p>Above all, brands need to work out when to act as themselves, or through influencers in the social space. What are the key KPIs, how to measure these and how to ensure valuable content lives effectively beyond social channels? </p> <p><strong><a href="http://schedule.sxsw.com/2017/events/PP97038">Social Video and The Future of Consumption</a></strong></p> <p>Representatives from Vox Media, Vice Media and the New York Times joined this panel to discuss how social media is impacting video journalism. This session made very clear that Facebook is now the platform for video consumption. </p> <p>The NYT identified Facebook as ‘the stage’, and the essential channel for engagement and getting time with its audience. A major focus for NYT is around <a href="https://econsultancy.com/blog/67808-10-pioneering-examples-of-brands-using-facebook-live/">Facebook Live</a>, which is being used to provide real-time coverage of news events. They are even looking at using this channel to create crowd-sourced investigations, a kind of mass citizen journalism.</p> <p>The upside of the live video phenomenon is that brands have an opportunity to powerfully engage with a massive audience, using current, exciting and rapidly changing content. </p> <p><iframe src="https://www.facebook.com/plugins/video.php?href=https%3A%2F%2Fwww.facebook.com%2Fnytimes%2Fvideos%2F10151119750979999%2F&amp;show_text=1&amp;width=560" width="560" height="476"></iframe></p> <p>The downside of live unedited content, is a concern around quality and the loss of editorial perspective. As a result, insightful user comments can be important to create context; but recognising this may not always be the case, Vice has indicated that all user comments are monitored in real-time.</p> <p>More controversially, the <a href="https://tytnetwork.com">The Young Turks</a> news channel is allowing users to pay to have their comments listed. Although the rise in importance of user comments can be seen as a democratic trend, allowing a financial bias on inputs would seem rather less altruistic. </p> <p>Another concern is that a publisher brand cannot easily prevent incorrect stories or unsuitable content being viewed. They can provide a retraction or an alternative perspective later on; but this may be seen by many fewer people. A good example of this would be the <a href="http://money.cnn.com/2016/06/10/technology/hillary-clinton-google-search-results/">SourceFed Hilary Clinton conspiracy theory</a>. </p> <p>For me, this progression towards an ‘always-on’ society is worryingly redolent of Dave Eggers' book, and now film, <a href="https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=QCOXARv6J9k">The Circle.</a></p> <p>In any event, the benchmark for how quality video is defined is changing rapidly as we transition from a ‘TV-centric’ to ‘mobile video-centric’ world. In the digital space, where everyone with a phone is a director, quality is now less about production values and more about the story, speed and authenticity. </p> <p>Separate approaches to video content are needed across different channels. For example on Facebook a ‘raw’ approach is more appropriate and authentic. <a href="https://econsultancy.com/blog/67977-four-examples-of-brands-using-an-episodic-content-marketing-strategy/">Episodic content</a> on Snapchat is popular, with bitesize ‘episodes’ being used to tell a story in a manner entirely fitting to the medium. </p> <p>With live video, there is also a greater ethical onus on brands to decide what they will show and what they will not. A good example of content that could be considered to be on this demarcation line is <a href="http://mashable.com/2016/10/21/snapchat-breaking-news/#i0SLEFuJPsql">Snapchat’s coverage of the conflict in Mosul</a>.</p> <p><strong><a href="http://schedule.sxsw.com/2017/events/PP65066">Content Distribution Platforms – Friends or Foes?</a></strong></p> <p>The panel for this session included The Economist, Conde Nast International, The Young Turks and ABC News. They looked at how<em> </em>publishers are becoming more reliant than ever on content distribution platforms such as Facebook and Snapchat to reach new audiences. </p> <p>A good starting point for this session was mention of Emily Bell’s 2016 article <a href="http://www.cjr.org/analysis/facebook_and_media.php">Facebook Is Eating The World</a>.</p> <p>Facebook is the key platform under consideration here, as it increasingly becomes the place where online content is consumed. It’s importance and control over brand content has increased with the rise of <a href="https://econsultancy.com/blog/67544-facebook-to-open-up-instant-articles-what-publishers-need-to-know/">Instant Articles</a>, as opposed to publisher feeds, keeping traffic within the Facebook ecosystem. As an aside, Snapchat was seen to be on the rise but not currently a viable global option. </p> <p>With this is in mind, the panel considered that Facebook was both a friend and a foe. It was seen to be a friend in terms of providing a broad distribution platform and a foe with regards to its control over advertising revenues. </p> <p>According to Steve Oh of The Young Turks, the key to content success with Facebook is threefold:</p> <ul> <li>Creating regular, relevant content</li> <li>Swift use of new product features released</li> <li>Focus on building an audience </li> </ul> <p>The Economist’s approach is to focus on bite size content that lures customers towards subscription, with news topics including ‘on this day’ and ‘famous quotes’. A specific approach is with ‘Vimages’, using Facebook <a href="http://www.niemanlab.org/2016/09/with-vimages-the-economist-is-using-facebook-to-make-low-budget-video-versions-of-its-stories/">to re-package magazine stories into video form</a>.</p> <p>One of the questions in the session, was how to keep up with the rapid changes at Facebook and the best ways to share content. There was no clear answer, but suggestions included looking for Newsroom tips, and Google Alerts pertaining to Facebook algorithms. </p> <p><a href="http://schedule.sxsw.com/2017/events/PP61899"><strong>Art + Science: Videos That Inform, Inspire &amp; Scale</strong></a></p> <p>Finally, PopSugar's David Grant discussed what brand marketers need to know about creating video that engages their target audience at scale while delivering on brand KPIs. The session sought to explain the success of PopSugar in targeting millennial women.</p> <p>The starting point for the brand's success is to understand, as does Snapchat, the increasing cultural relevance of the camera (<a href="https://www.nytimes.com/2017/03/08/technology/snap-makes-a-bet-on-the-cultural-supremacy-of-the-camera.html?_r=0">as identified in this NYT article</a>) and that humans naturally gravitate towards content that is made up of <a href="http://www.kvibe.com/2015/03/17/why-we-as-humans-gravitate-towards-video/">sight, sound and motion.</a></p> <p>PopSugar creates videos that inform, and are created from a combined perspective drawn from its brand, brand partners and their data. PopSugar has created its own tool, <a href="http://www.adweek.com/digital/how-popsugars-new-tool-will-help-you-stay-ahead-social-media-trends-174640/">Trend Rank</a>, to help it identify areas of content focus, supply ‘velocity data predicting’ and find trends ahead of time.</p> <p>Grant observed that, with video, companies typically have only one second to make an impact, so selected content has only that time to have an effect. </p> <p>Some examples of PopSugar's recent successful native content campaigns are: </p> <ul> <li>Doubletree by Hilton: ‘Find Your Happy’ campaign. Building on the fact that Hilton always leaves a cookie for its guests, PopSugar a campaign focusing on wider acts <a href="https://www.popsugar.com/smart-living/Random-Acts-Kindness-You-Can-Do-Every-Day-40742607">of kindness and generosity</a>.</li> <li>Garner Shampoo: ‘Photo Ready Mums’. Based on the insight that mums often take pictures of the family, <a href="https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=UzaKYqPYKyo">but regret that they are not in the pictures themselves;</a> this campaign shows how mums can be in the photos, and look great, with the help of Garner. </li> </ul> <p><strong>Joe Biden</strong></p> <p>And finally, some lessons from the keynote speech of SXSW 2017 (and a totally inspiring moment) from Joe Biden, former Vice-President of The United States. </p> <p>Perhaps more recently famous for his (unwitting) appearance in <a href="http://www.boredpanda.com/funny-barack-obama-joe-biden-tweets/">a sequence of memes with Barack Obama</a>, Joe Biden appeared on stage in Austin to raise awareness and seek support for his <a href="http://www.cnbc.com/2017/01/09/biden-outlines-steps-to-pursue-post-obama-cancer-moonshot.html">cancer Moon-shot agenda</a>.</p> <p>He discussed the progress made during Obama's presidency by the call for innovative solutions to tackle the barriers that prevent faster gains in ending cancer; and described how he plans to remain in the fight. </p> <p>This talk has a wider relevance for business because, as Joe Biden put it, organisations involved in the cancer treatment process had become ‘siloed by design’ and their ability to face the growing threat of this disease was limited by this lack of co-operation.</p> <p>One of these silo-related issues was the low number of patients involved in clinical trials (only 4/100) as there was no system for companies to match the correct trial drugs to the correct patients and vice versa. In addition a database of patient learnings was not being effectively shared between hospitals.</p> <p>Biden’s efforts to break down the barriers in the cancer treatment process are a lesson to organisations who may have similar silo problems. </p> <p>Organisations in this process have started to collaborate and other bodies have become involved in the fight. NASA is adding information regarding the impact of radiation on astronauts, and Amazon has provided free cloud data storage for the project.  </p> <p>There is also focus on clear KPIs and where the biggest return on investment can be derived. As Biden said, of any process "where everything is treated as equally important, then nothing is considered important."</p> <p>The key to the project’s increasing success (apart from the obvious profile of the promoter) is the open sharing of information, offering clear encouragement and, of course, giving hope.</p> <p>Inspiring stuff and a lesson to all businesses interested in breaking down silos and identifying priorities.</p> tag:econsultancy.com,2008:TrainingDate/3208 2017-03-21T12:28:11+00:00 2017-03-21T12:28:11+00:00 Search Engine Optimization (SEO) Marketing <p>Search Engine Optimisation [SEO] is becoming increasingly tricky - continuous innovations between the rival search engines, coupled with increased activity from your competitors, means that you have to identify the right strategy for your business to rank well.</p> <p>This SEO training course will enable you to build an organic search marketing strategy that will mean more of the right kind of visitors to your website, boost online conversions and stand out in today’s fiercely competitive online marketplace, ensuring the best possible return on investment.</p> tag:econsultancy.com,2008:TrainingDate/3205 2017-03-21T12:25:24+00:00 2017-03-21T12:25:24+00:00 Search Engine Optimisation (SEO) - Advanced <p>SEO is a complex subject and for those wishing to move their knowledge beyond the basics, this course has been designed for the intermediate to advanced learner. There is lots to consider when optimising for maximum visibility through search. From key phrase research and query audits, to content strategy, page mark-up and site architecture. Getting all these things right is key to grabbing customers who know what they want, but not where to get it from.</p><p>Providing you with a structured process to improve your results from SEO, an industry expert will lead this one-day workshop, reviewing attendees' existing optimisation approaches, analytics and tools against their top-performing competitors and best practice.</p> tag:econsultancy.com,2008:TrainingDate/3200 2017-03-21T12:18:01+00:00 2017-03-21T12:18:01+00:00 PPC <p>Pay per click (PPC) advertising campaigns are a great way to maximise website visibility on key search engines. But PPC markets are becoming increasingly competitive - you need an effective strategy or you’re throwing money (and traffic) away.</p> <p>This PPC marketing course covers the essentials of successful paid search campaigns, exploring best-practice tools and techniques from writing copy, to bidding strategy, to effective analysis of competitors.</p> tag:econsultancy.com,2008:BlogPost/68885 2017-03-21T09:51:45+00:00 2017-03-21T09:51:45+00:00 SEO ranking factors analysed: The importance of brand relevancy James Perrott <ul> <li>Domain Trust - defined by Majestic </li> <li>Number of referring domains</li> <li>HTTPS vs HTTP</li> <li>Mobile-friendly score</li> <li>Internal links prioritisation</li> <li>Canonical tags</li> <li>Keyword in meta title, h1 and h2 tags</li> <li>Length of on-page content for ranking pages</li> <li>Brand + product term to define relevance for a brand and the product searched for</li> <li>Engagement - average time on site and bounce rate as defined by Alexa.com</li> <li>Engagement of landing pages</li> </ul> <p><strong>The process:</strong> I have collated 100 keywords from five of the most popular online industries to identify which are the best performing websites. Remember, this is only 100 keywords and they are often much broader than this. </p> <p>Once I have identified the top performing websites and have seen what is working at industry level, I am going to dive into the most popular keyword in the industry and run a SERP comparison to identify what splits websites apart in the top 10. Then, in conclusion, we’ll be able to provide some insight as to what you should be focusing on to perform well in your industry.</p> <p>So, to begin...</p> <h3>Insurance</h3> <p>In the insurance sector, if you were to rank in first place for 100 keywords then the maximum traffic would equal 613,874 clicks.</p> <p>This market is now dominated by aggregators due to the nature of people’s searches for insurance related products. Brand loyalty is slowly dwindling within this space, even with brand loyalty being very much at the top of insurance providers’ remarketing. People are after the best price, period. </p> <p>Following a Google Insights report in April 2015 it was concluded that 61% of people perform research before a vehicle insurance purchase, and I think it is fair to roughly extrapolate that across the insurance market as a whole. The report found that only 44% of people bought from the brand they considered initially, but I think this is very apparent in the UK and would be a smaller percentage compared to France where this research was conducted. This helps explain the aggregator dominance and low brand advocacy.</p> <p>The chart below shows how the market looks for this keyword set. To explain the axis:</p> <ul> <li>X = number of ranking keywords</li> <li>Y = estimated monthly clicks</li> </ul> <p><img src="https://assets.econsultancy.com/images/0008/4641/competitive_landscape_market_leaders.png" alt="" width="700" height="268"></p> <p>A large part of our work when looking at individual markets is to categorise each keyword into a product or offering group. This allows us to then dig into the individual sub-categories and begin to go very granular. </p> <p>Below shows how the 100 keyword set splits into individual categories, the largest clearly being vehicle insurance.</p> <p><img src="https://assets.econsultancy.com/images/0008/4642/click_distribution_for_insurance.png" alt="" width="700" height="226"></p> <p>After segmenting the market into different categories, we’re able to see that vehicle insurance provides the largest return into overall number of clicks. Vehicle is closely followed by holiday, then home, pet, life and so on.</p> <p><img style="vertical-align: middle;" src="https://www.zazzlemedia.co.uk/wp-content/uploads/2017/03/Screen-Shot-2017-03-08-at-12.29.31.png" alt="Keyword Cluster" width="409" height="354"></p> <p>The online insurance market is one of the most hotly contested, and the difference between position one and two for key terms could be worth millions of pounds of revenue. Looking at overall authority within the market share, it’s interesting to see that eight out of the 10 websites have an overall authority above 50.</p> <p><img src="https://assets.econsultancy.com/images/0008/4643/Domain_Trust_for_insurance.png" alt="" width="700" height="269"></p> <p><img style="vertical-align: middle;" src="https://www.zazzlemedia.co.uk/wp-content/uploads/2017/03/Screen-Shot-2017-03-08-at-12.30.25.png" alt="Domain Trust &amp; Linking Domains" width="500"></p> <p>What is really refreshing in this chart is the fact that GoCompare.com does not have the most referring domains, nor the most authoritative domain, yet it leads the insurance market. It is fantastic news; this SERP is clearly showing a move away from link-based ranking metrics - to an extent. </p> <p>GoCompare.com does lead the engagement metrics chart, with an average time on site of 7mins and 26secs and bounce rate of 39.3%. Its average time on site is 30% higher than that of the nearest competitor.</p> <p><img src="https://assets.econsultancy.com/images/0008/4644/Bounce_Rate_for_Insurance.png" alt="" width="700" height="204"></p> <p>A standout in this graph must be Tesco Bank with a bounce rate of just 15.2%. This is incredible.</p> <p><img src="https://assets.econsultancy.com/images/0008/4645/time_on_site_for_insurance.png" alt="" width="500"></p> <p>'Car insurance' is the most popular search term within the insurance market, at 550,000 searches per month on average in the UK. Let’s analyse the top 10 websites and how they compare.</p> <p><img src="https://assets.econsultancy.com/images/0008/4646/Positioning-Table_for_insurance.png" alt="" width="700" height="179"></p> <p>We identified that as part of the overall market analysis, link authority and number of links were not the deciding factors. It does not appear that HTTPS, page speed, internal links or words on the page are deciding factors either. Interestingly, we’re seeing in this SERP that both engagement and brand relevancy to the product are far superior.</p> <p>Looking at the final column in the table above, GoCompare is far more relevant for car insurance than any other brand in the top 10. That even includes Admiral, which is specifically a car insurance brand.</p> <p>The search term ‘gocompare car insurance’ has 110,000 searches on average per month. How much of that is influenced by the term ‘gocompare’ and ‘go compare’ can’t be accounted for, but this, mixed with great engagement, is certainly at play in this SERP. </p> <h3>Mortgages</h3> <p>In this sector the maximum amount of traffic from ranking first for the 100 keywords is 264,332 clicks.</p> <p>This market is now dominated by mortgage lenders as you would expect. Halifax has been slowly growing its online presence over the last year, so it will be interesting to see where it is overly proficient.</p> <p>After using the same methodology as the previous analysis, we’re able to start digging into the data. Halifax.co.uk is by far the market leader in the mortgages space. It receives an estimated 79,734 more visits than HSBC, the second largest. Halifax receives an estimated 59% of all position one clicks within the keyword set we collated.</p> <p><img src="https://assets.econsultancy.com/images/0008/4893/mortgage_market_leaders.png" alt="" width="750" height="287"></p> <p>When looking at authority and number of links within this space, we can see that Halifax is outperformed by Barclays with an overall authority of 72 and referring domains total of 16,223. This again puts a solid argument together that links aren’t the number one ranking signal within this space. </p> <p>There are some surprises in the authority sphere with Nationwide only having an overall authority of 37 and TSB at 25.</p> <p><img src="https://assets.econsultancy.com/images/0008/4894/mortgages_Linking-Domains.png" alt="" width="700" height="295"></p> <p><img style="vertical-align: middle;" src="https://www.zazzlemedia.co.uk/wp-content/uploads/2017/03/Screen-Shot-2017-03-08-at-12.33.40.png" alt="Linking Domains" width="500"></p> <p>The 'calculator' section of the keyword set has by far the most search volume and estimated clicks associated to it. With 176,026 estimated clicks and 31 keywords, it contributes an enormous amount to the overall market within mortgages.</p> <p><img src="https://assets.econsultancy.com/images/0008/4895/Estimated-click-by-category_mortgages.png" alt="" width="700" height="272"></p> <p><img style="vertical-align: middle;" src="https://www.zazzlemedia.co.uk/wp-content/uploads/2017/03/Screen-Shot-2017-03-08-at-12.34.46.png" alt="Keyword Cluster" width="495" height="291"></p> <p>Due to Halifax having the largest market share by far, I wanted to identify the reason for this domination. It appears that the answer is Halifax’s first position ranking for ‘mortgage calculator’. Ranking first for this keyword has led to the brand reaching an estimated 145,654 clicks and 82.7% market share.</p> <p>This traffic will prove invaluable for a brand that also sells mortgages; it is the best lead generation tool out there for both providing invaluable information and qualifying leads/mortgages that you want to follow up.</p> <p>Below is the split of estimated traffic that Halifax captures:</p> <p><img style="vertical-align: middle;" src="https://www.zazzlemedia.co.uk/wp-content/uploads/2017/03/Screen-Shot-2017-03-08-at-12.36.41.png" alt="Category" width="500"></p> <p>It is clear to see that it nearly owns the entirety of the calculator space. However, there are significant gaps in informational content that could also add to Halifax’s purchase funnel. For example, Halifax should provide expert content on the processes for buy-to-let, help-to-buy and first-time-buyer guides. Doing this will eliminate the risk of having all its eggs in one basket with 'mortgage calculator' while providing expert content from a lender, which people reading up on the subject will trust.</p> <p>It currently does this very poorly, but high street lenders such as Nationwide and Natwest do it very well. Having the content very close to the mortgages section has allowed it to rank very well for terms such as ‘first time buyers guide’ etc. This is something Halifax should action sooner rather than later.</p> <p>Having this position one ranking, however, has damaged Halifax’s engagement metrics. The bounce rate for Halifax is 79% and average time on site at a dismal 56 seconds.</p> <p><img src="https://assets.econsultancy.com/images/0008/4896/Time-on-site_mortgages.png" alt="" width="700" height="204"></p> <p><img style="vertical-align: middle;" src="https://www.zazzlemedia.co.uk/wp-content/uploads/2017/03/Screen-Shot-2017-03-08-at-12.37.52.png" alt="Time on Site &amp; Bounce Rate" width="500"></p> <p>After looking at the experience of Halifax’s mortgage calculator, which is cannibalising the average time on site and bounce rate, it becomes slightly clearer why this may be the case.</p> <p>The mortgage summary on the right-hand side automatically populates and does not offer a cross link into Halifax’s mortgage offering. A simple cross link may help keep users on the website once they have discovered out how much they can borrow. Also, the online banking portal which most visitors will be going towards goes onto a separate domain - halifax-online.co.uk</p> <p>Consolidating this into Halifax.co.uk may further help in areas of which Halifax is unaware, at present. Improving these engagement metrics could help improve rankings across the board.</p> <p><img src="https://assets.econsultancy.com/images/0008/4897/Mortgage_calculator_halifax.png" alt="" width="700" height="535"></p> <p>'Mortgage calculator' is the most popular search term within the insurance market at 550,000 searches per month on average in the UK. Let’s analyse the top 10 websites and see how they fare against one another.</p> <p><img src="https://assets.econsultancy.com/images/0008/4898/Position-and-Brand_mortgages.png" alt="" width="700" height="385"></p> <p>It’s clear to see that authority and links are not the main ranking factors when it comes to mortgages. Neither are HTTPS, page speed or number of words on the page.</p> <p>Halifax is one of the largest mortgage lenders in the UK and, like insurance, its brand relevancy for mortgages and in particular the mortgage calculator surpasses its rivals. With a brand plus keyword search volume total of 27,100, it’s 4,900 higher than the BBC which has an absolutely archaic page for its mortgage calculator that is not mobile-friendly and does not have a self-referring canonical tag.</p> <p>If this BBC page was updated, I would have it as a close contender to Halifax for this key term.</p> <p><img src="https://assets.econsultancy.com/images/0008/4899/BBC_mortgage.png" alt="" width="448" height="519"></p> <h3>Jewellery</h3> <p>In the jewellery sector, if you were to rank in first place for 100 keywords then the maximum traffic would equal 370,564 clicks. This market is now dominated by bricks and mortar stores as you would expect. </p> <p>However, there was an anomaly present within the data and that was Stevenstone.co.uk. Stevenstone ranks first for ‘engagement rings’, but after the analysis was run I concluded that it was wrongly ranking for this term, and did not want to skew the data or arrive at wrongful conclusions.</p> <p><img src="https://assets.econsultancy.com/images/0008/4902/Market-Leaders_jewellery.png" alt="" width="700" height="268"></p> <p>H Samuel leads the market that is largely dominated by brands on the high street. This is a much more closely contested market than others analysed so far, with the difference in market leader being only 3.9% market share and 25,548 estimated clicks.</p> <p>I believe this is down to H Samuel’s breadth in product and keyword ranking. H Samuel ranks for 97% of the keyword set (97 keywords), whereas the next is Ernest Jones with 71 keywords. With a slightly different keyword set this could be a different outcome, but for this exercise, H Samuel leads the way.</p> <p><img src="https://assets.econsultancy.com/images/0008/4903/Doman-trust_jewels.png" alt="" width="700" height="269"></p> <p><img style="vertical-align: middle;" src="https://www.zazzlemedia.co.uk/wp-content/uploads/2017/03/Screen-Shot-2017-03-08-at-13.21.41.png" alt="Domain Trust &amp; Linking Domains" width="500"></p> <p>At first glance, authority and number of referring domains for each website do not stand out as a definitive ranking signal. </p> <p>Argos has far superior authority and number of domains but it is not jewellery-specific. But from the jewellery-specific websites, H Samuel is further ahead in regards to both.</p> <p><img src="https://assets.econsultancy.com/images/0008/4906/Time-on-Site_jewels.png" alt="" width="700" height="204"></p> <p><img src="https://assets.econsultancy.com/images/0008/4907/chart_2.png" alt="" width="500"></p> <p>Engagement is a similar story. Argos performs better than the rest; however H Samuel does so in regards to the jewellers. The average time on site for H Samuel is just under a minute higher than the others, a clear sign of product breadth and website quality as the bounce rate remains low.</p> <p><img src="https://assets.econsultancy.com/images/0008/4909/CLick-distribution-by-category_jewels.png" alt="" width="700" height="226"></p> <p>Engagement rings is the most popular search term (behind branded Apple watch term at 301,000 searches) within the jewellery market at 201,000 searches per month on average in the UK. Ranking first for this alone can draw in an estimated 48,501 clicks each month.</p> <p>Let’s analyse the top 10 websites and how they fare against one another.</p> <p><img src="https://assets.econsultancy.com/images/0008/4911/Positioning-3_jewels.png" alt="" width="700" height="312"></p> <p>Ignoring Stevenstone, we can see that H Samuel does not have the largest number of links, nor the strongest authority. There is no HTTPS, it ranks as mediocre in page speed, there is no self-referring canonical and it has a low level of internal links. </p> <p>However, it does have the second highest number of brand plus keyword searches, again proving brand relevancy is playing a factor. We also know of H Samuel as a high street retailer with huge jewellery relevancy, but we cannot place a signal on this.</p> <p>One thing I did notice is that since the launch of the new website Google is struggling with the ranking page as '/diamonds' is ranking but it has set up a canonical to http://www.hsamuel.co.uk/webstore/engagement.cdo</p> <p>Fixing this relevancy issue may help H Samuel overcome the dark horse, Stevenstone.</p> <h3>Fashion</h3> <p>In the fashion sector, if you were to rank in first place for our 100 keywords then the maximum traffic would equal 1,220,592 clicks.</p> <p>This market is by far the largest in this comparison data set. It is dominated by ASOS but significant market share is being taken away by the likes of Boohoo, Missguided and House of Fraser. This keyword set focused across both male (M) and female (W) keywords and if it was to be gender-specific, particular brands would be more prominent over one another.</p> <p><img src="https://assets.econsultancy.com/images/0008/4913/Fashion-Comptitor-Landscape_fashion.png" alt="" width="700" height="267"></p> <p>Looking at this broad, generic keyword set, we can see that ASOS reigns supreme. However, significant market share is beginning to be taken away by brands such as:</p> <ul> <li>Boohoo</li> <li>Missguided</li> <li>Prettylittlething</li> <li>Zalando</li> </ul> <p>The first three are really rising and progressing with their marketing activities, whilst Zalando is the ASOS of Europe which has come to the UK with a bang. Since launching its site with great SEO optimisation, Zalando has gone from strength-to-strength.</p> <p>ASOS currently captures an estimated 586,719 clicks per month with 48.1% overall market share. ASOS has so many pages ranking for these keywords that the company ranks for 106.1% of the keywords, meaning it double, triple, and quadruples up on ranking URLs for some keywords.</p> <p><img style="vertical-align: middle;" src="https://www.zazzlemedia.co.uk/wp-content/uploads/2017/03/Screen-Shot-2017-03-08-at-13.29.38.png" alt="Competitive Landscape Market Leaders Fashion" width="500"></p> <p>Boohoo is second in the market with 327,350 estimated clicks and 26.8% of the market, but only ranks for 75.5% of the keyword set. This suggests the number could be much higher if it ranked for the other 24.5% of the keyword set.</p> <p>When looking at the authority and number of referring domains that go into each of the websites, ASOS leads the market. ASOS has more than three times the number of links of competitors, which is more than contributing to its overall authority of 75. This is the first time I’ve seen this in the analysis so far.</p> <p><img src="https://assets.econsultancy.com/images/0008/4916/Linking-Domains_fashion.png" alt="" width="700" height="269"></p> <p><img style="vertical-align: middle;" src="https://www.zazzlemedia.co.uk/wp-content/uploads/2017/03/Screen-Shot-2017-03-08-at-13.31.09.png" alt="Linking Domains" width="500"></p> <p>ASOS excels yet again in engagement; 27% bounce rate with an average time on site of over 10 minutes - that’s some serious browsing and adding-items-to-basket time!</p> <p><img src="https://assets.econsultancy.com/images/0008/4918/Time-on-site_fashion.png" alt="" width="700" height="204"></p> <p><img src="https://assets.econsultancy.com/images/0008/4919/fashion_chart.png" alt="" width="500" height="156"></p> <p>After categorising the keyword data, which I split into both men’s and women’s, there was a clear winner for where the most estimated clicks lay; dresses. Due to the vast amount of categories that online fashion retailers have, the chart below represents a shrunken-down number of categories to those that have the most potential.</p> <p><img src="https://assets.econsultancy.com/images/0008/4920/Click-distribution-by-cat_fashion.png" alt="" width="700" height="391"></p> <p>Dresses is the most popular search term within the fashion market at 201,000 searches per month on average in the UK. It was jointly most popular with prom dresses, which also receives 201,000 searches on average per month. Due to that being an average, which will have a huge seasonal spike when proms happen, let’s analyse the top 10 websites and how they fare against one another.</p> <p><img src="https://assets.econsultancy.com/images/0008/4921/Positioning-table_fashion.png" alt="" width="700" height="291"></p> <p>After all the market domination by ASOS, it is outperformed by five other brands in this SERP.</p> <p>The top websites have a very similar structure on-page with hyperlinks and internal links pointing you to the other types of dresses, which I find very useful. The one thing that the top websites do have that ASOS doesn’t and the data doesn’t show, is that they are mainly female-specific websites, which may establish a stronger relevancy towards dresses.</p> <p>Prettylittlething purely stocks female clothing and has had a huge push with marketing recently. Boohoo has only just recently launched a male range, Missguided is female only, New Look has a limited male stock, Monsoon is female only - and then you have ASOS.</p> <p>Again, we can’t draw any strong conclusions but it’s interesting to theorise. Perhaps on this occasion ASOS’s breadth of product and parameter/ugly URL has let it down.</p> <h3>Travel</h3> <p>In the travel sector, if you were to rank in first place for our 100 keywords then the maximum traffic would equal 504,247 clicks.</p> <p>The market leader in this space is onthebeach.co.uk with 178,478 estimated clicks and 35.4% market share for the keyword set I collated. Being market leader with only 58% keyword coverage suggests it ranks particularly well for some generic terms.</p> <p>Closely following OnTheBeach are Last Minute and Skyscanner.</p> <p><img src="https://assets.econsultancy.com/images/0008/4922/Comp-landscape_travel.png" alt="" width="700" height="268"></p> <p>OnTheBeach has really low overall authority and number of referring domains, showing once again that this is not an important ranking factor within this niche. </p> <p><img src="https://assets.econsultancy.com/images/0008/4923/Linking-Domains_travel.png" alt="" width="700" height="229"></p> <p>It is significantly outperformed by brands such as Lastminute, Skyscanner, Thomson and EasyJet.</p> <p><img src="https://assets.econsultancy.com/images/0008/4924/travel_chart.png" alt="" width="500" height="158"></p> <p>OnTheBeach has the second highest average time on site at 6mins 20secs with a much smaller product offering than Thomson. All holiday sites within this analysis have good bounce rates, but this may be more down to the nature of the market rather than poor experience. </p> <p>When searching for holidays, we are very patient people. We like to explore what is available to us on each different website to ensure we’re not missing an offer or resort.</p> <p>Due to the rise in mobile, the dwell time is much larger, as people are in the research phase. </p> <p><img style="vertical-align: middle;" src="https://www.zazzlemedia.co.uk/wp-content/uploads/2017/03/Time-on-site-4.png" alt="Time on Site &amp; Bounce Rate" width="1163" height="322"></p> <p><img src="https://assets.econsultancy.com/images/0008/4925/travel_chart_2.png" alt="" width="500" height="154"></p> <p>Cheap holidays is the most popular search term within the holiday market at 550,000 searches per month on average in the UK. Let’s analyse the top 10 websites and how they fare against one another.</p> <p>OnTheBeach has the market majority, but Thomson in this case leads on the most searched-for term. When analysing what it excels in, it does not have the largest number of referring domains, authority, internal links or number of words on the page. </p> <p>However, it does lead the market in regards to relevancy with the highest number of searches for ‘brand plus keyword’; in this case being ‘thomson cheap holidays’ with 390 searches on average per month.</p> <p><img src="https://assets.econsultancy.com/images/0008/4926/Pos-Brand_travel.png" alt="" width="700" height="267"></p> <h3>In conclusion...</h3> <p>Below are the five brands and URLs that capture the UK’s most competitive search terms in their relevant niche:</p> <p><img src="https://assets.econsultancy.com/images/0008/4927/overall_summary.png" alt="" width="700" height="169"></p> <p>Below are some averages and key takeaways that this analysis has provided me with:</p> <ul> <li>Authority is not the most important signal - average trust = 40.2</li> <li>Number of referring domains is not the most important signal - average linking root domains of 9,171 per domain.</li> <li>HTTPS is not a definitive ranking signal to push those out of the top positions if they remain on HTTP. I was a firm believer in this and from communication Google has produced, I believe I’m not the only one. However, these websites that remain on HTTP and lead the most competitive SERPs may still excel in other areas that make this small HTTPS ranking signal obsolete. But after looking at this analysis HTTP &gt; HTTPS.</li> <li>You must be mobile-friendly. After running each ranking URL through the test, they were all mobile-friendly. Just being mobile-friendly isn’t enough now, each brand is pushing the limits with ensuring their website is the best mobile site, especially with the looming <a href="https://econsultancy.com/blog/68425-google-to-create-separate-mobile-index-what-you-need-to-know/">mobile-first index</a>. The BBC mortgage calculator page is a great example of a page that has to be made mobile-friendly.</li> <li>Page speed is important, but not a deal breaker unless painfully slow.</li> <li>Average internal links was seven per URL, which isn’t impressive or advisable. I’d strongly recommend that it should be above this.</li> <li>Self-referring canonical on the URLs is a must.</li> <li>Keywords in meta title and following header tags is a must: I did not come across one URL that didn’t follow this practice. </li> <li>On-page content is important, as is faceted navigation. Average word count on page is 471 and the fashion websites were one to follow from an internal linking perspective at category level. </li> </ul> <p>The stand out factor for me throughout this entire piece was the weight that seemed to be conveniently placed on average 'brand plus keyword' search volume. Three out of the five market leaders had weaker metrics across the board, bar this - in which they were the best performers. The average brand plus keyword search volume is 38,478.</p> <p>This shows to me that sometimes you may excel in every ranking signal, but if your brand is not relevant to the product in the customer’s eyes then it isn’t in Google’s. This shows the importance of building brands and not placing sole digital marketing strategies on link and authority acquisition.</p> <p><strong><em>To learn more on this topic, check out these resources:</em></strong></p> <ul> <li><a href="https://econsultancy.com/training/courses/topics/search-marketing/"><em>Search Marketing Training</em></a></li> <li><a href="https://econsultancy.com/reports/seo-best-practice-guide/"><em>Search Engine Optimization (SEO) Best Practice Guide</em></a></li> </ul> tag:econsultancy.com,2008:Report/4438 2017-03-14T11:00:00+00:00 2017-03-14T11:00:00+00:00 Financial Services and Insurance Internet Statistics Compendium <p>Econsultancy's <strong>Financial Services and Insurance Internet Statistics Compendium</strong> is a comprehensive collection of the most recent financial services and insurance statistics and market data publicly available on online marketing, ecommerce, the internet and related digital media.</p> <p>Like our main <a title="Internet Statistics Compendium" href="https://econsultancy.com/reports/internet-statistics-compendium">Internet Statistics Compendium</a>, this report has been collated from information available to the public, which we have aggregated together in one place to help you quickly find the financial services and insurance internet statistics you need.</p> <p>There are all sorts of internet statistics which you can slot into your next presentation, report or client pitch.</p> <p>Areas covered in this report include:</p> <ul> <li>Digital financial services and insurance market trends</li> <li>Financial Technology (Fintech) and investments</li> <li>Digital strategy and transformation</li> <li>Online banking</li> <li>Mobile banking, mobile payments and the mobile wallet</li> <li>Customer experience</li> </ul> <p><strong>A free sample document is available for download.</strong></p>