5 Google Business Profile Tweaks To Improve Foot Traffic

Posted by MiriamEllis

Your agency recommends all kinds of useful tactics to help improve the local SEO for your local business clients, but how many of those techniques are leveraging Google Business Profile (GBP) to attract as many walk-ins as possible?

Today, I’m sharing five GBP tweaks worthy of implementation to help turn digital traffic into foot traffic. I’ve ordered them from easiest to hardest, but as you’ll see, even the more difficult ones aren’t actually very daunting — all the more reason to try them out!

1) Answer Google Q&A quickly (they might be leads)

Difficulty level: Easy

If you have automotive industry clients, chances you’re familiar with Greg Gifford from DealerOn. At a recent local search conference, Greg shared that 40 percent of the Google Q&A questions his clients receive are actually leads

40 percent!

Here’s what that looks like in Google’s Q&A:

It looks like Coast Nissan has a customer who is ready to walk through the door if they receive an answer. But as you can see, the question has gone unanswered. Note, too, that four people have thumbed the question up, which signifies a shared interest in a potential answer, but it’s still not making it onto the radar of this particular dealership.

Nearly all verticals could have overlooked leads sitting in their GBPs — from questions about dietary options at a restaurant, to whether a retailer stocks a product, to queries about ADA compliance or available parking. Every ask represents a possible lead, and in a competitive retail landscape, who can afford to ignore such an opportunity?

The easiest way for Google My Business (GMB) listing owners and managers to get notified of new questions is via the Google Maps App, as notifications are not yet part of the main GMB dashboard. This will help you catch questions as they arise. The faster your client responds to incoming queries, the better their chances of winning the foot traffic.

2) Post about your proximity to nearby major attractions

Difficulty level: Easy

Imagine someone has just spent the morning at a museum, a landmark, park, or theatre. After exploring, perhaps they want to go to lunch, go apparel shopping, find a gas station, or a bookstore near them. A well-positioned Google Post, like the one below, can guide them right to your client’s door:

This could become an especially strong draw for foot traffic if Google expands its experiment of showing Posts’ snippets not just in the Business Profile and Local Finder, but within local packs:

Posting is so easy — there’s no reason not to give it a try. Need help getting your client started? Here’s Google’s intro and here’s an interview I did last year with Joel Headley on using Google Posts to boost bookings and conversions.

3) Turn GBPs into storefronts

Difficulty level: Easy for retailers

With a little help from SWIS and Pointy, your retail clients’ GBPs can become the storefront window that beckons in highly-converting foot traffic. Your client’s “See What’s In Store inventory” appears within the Business Profile, letting customers know the business has the exact merchandise they’re looking for:

Pointy is Google’s launch partner for this game-changing GBP feature. I recently interviewed CEO Mark Cummins regarding the ultra-simple Pointy device which makes it a snap for nearly all retailers to instantly bring their inventory online — without the fuss of traditional e-commerce systems and at a truly nominal cost.

I’ll reiterate my prediction that SWIS is the “next big thing” in local, and when last I spoke with Mark, one percent of all US retailers had already adopted his product. Encourage your retail clients to sign up and give them an amazing competitive edge on driving foot traffic!

4) Make your profile pic a selfie hotspot

Difficulty level: Medium (feasible for many storefronts)

When a client has a physical premise (and community ordinances permit it), an exterior mural can turn through traffic into foot traffic — it also helps to convert Instagram selfie-takers into customers. As I mentioned in a recent blog post, a modest investment in this strategy could appeal to the 43–58 percent of survey respondents who are swayed to shop in locations that are visually appealing.

If a large outdoor mural isn’t possible, there’s plenty of inspiration for smaller indoor murals, here

Once the client has made the investment in providing a cultural experience for the community, they can try experimenting with getting the artwork placed as the cover photo on their GBP — anyone looking at a set of competitors in a given area will see this appealing, extra reason to choose their business over others.

Mark my words, local search marketers: We are on the verge of seeing Americans reject the constricted label of “consumer” in a quest for a more holistic view of themselves as whole persons. Local businesses that integrate art, culture, and community life into their business models will be well-placed to answer what, in my view, is a growing desire for authentic human experiences. As a local search marketer, myself, this is a topic I plan to explore further this year.

5) Putting time on your side

Difficulty level: Medium (feasible for willing clients)

Here’s a pet peeve of mine: businesses that serve working people but are only open 9–5. How can your client’s foot traffic achieve optimum levels if their doors are only open when everybody is at work?

So, here’s the task: Do a quick audit of the hours posted on the GBPs of your client’s direct competitors. For example, I found three craft shops in one small city with these hours:

Guess which competitor is getting all of the business after 6 PM every day of the week, when most people are off work and able to shop?

Now, it may well be that some of your smaller clients are already working as many hours as they can, but have they explored whether their hours are actually ideal for their customers’ needs and whether any time slots aren’t being filled in the community by their competitors? What if, instead of operating under the traditional 9–5, your client switched to 11–7, since no other competitor in town is open after 5 PM? It’s the same number of hours and your client would benefit from getting all the foot traffic of the 9–5-ers.

Alternatively, instead of closing on Saturdays, the business closed on Mondays — perhaps this is the slowest of their weekdays? Being open on the weekend could mean that the average worker can now access said business and become a customer.

It will take some openness to change, but if a business agrees to implementation, don’t forget to update the GMB hours and push out the new hours to the major citation platforms via a service like Moz Local

Your turn to add your best GMB moves

I hope you’ll take some of these simple GBP tips to an upcoming client meeting. And if they decide to forge ahead with your tips, be sure to monitor the outcomes! How great if a simple audit of hours turned into a foot traffic win for your client? 

 In the meantime, if you have any favorite techniques, hacks, or easy GMB wins to share with our community, I’d love to read your comments!

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Reblogged 1 month ago from tracking.feedpress.it

How to increase online engagement

During a recent webinar hosted by Gavin Laugenie, Head of Strategy and Insight at dotdigital, and Chris White, Senior Partner Manager at Styla, a poll revealed that high bounce rates on websites and landing pages are one of the biggest challenges marketers are facing.

This can be for numerous reasons, from a lack of planning or consideration of website design, to a lack of relevant and inspiring content conveying your brands’ message.  It’s preventing visitors from converting and damaging your bottom line.

To stop this from happening, it’s important that marketers create shopping experiences which are relevant, exciting, and make it as easy as possible for customers to complete their purchase.

Tactic #1 – Create stunning content

Web page design

Three seconds is all a consumer needs to absorb the visuals on your web or landing page and decide whether to stay or not.

In the Amazon-age we live in, online retailers need to work harder to differentiate themselves. The best way to do this is by creating unique digital experiences and curating engaging product stories that Amazon can’t. Using a consistent mix of eye-catching visuals helps to guide visitors down the page and clearly tell your brand’s story.

To keep your returning visitors engaged, these pages need to be updated regularly. Unfortunately, the process, from planning through to development and implementation, can often be a slow one. An automated design process that takes minutes to update will help you maintain a high level of engagement and encourage new guests to browse. This is where Styla is here to help.

Tactic #2 – Shoppable content  

Shoppable content

Connect content and commerce by delivering branded content
with relevant product information.

Help your customers mentally commit to their purchase by populating your content with important product details. Making your page directly shoppable significantly shortens the path to purchase and improves your conversion rate by 3.5x.

After successfully driving shoppers to engage with your ad, social, or email campaign, you don’t want to leave them with choice paralysis. Most failures to convert are caused when they can’t find the product or service information that they want. Including shoppable content prevents this from happening.

Including user-generated content will increase your conversions even further. But, as your designs need to be updated regularly, you also need to keep your content fresh to ensure new and returning customers alike are staying engaged.

Tactic #3 – Segmentation

Segmentation

After taking the time to design and regularly update your content you need to ensure you’re successfully driving visitors to your page.

Hitting the Mark 2018 found that 66% of brands still aren’t segmenting their audiences. By segmenting your audience, you can get a clearer picture of their likes and interests, which will improve the relevancy of your content. The more relevant your content, the more inspired customers will be to act.

When building your segments, it’s essential you fuse your
implicit and explicit data. This includes data gathered directly from the user,
such as through a preference center, and behavioral data like online browsing
habits. Using advanced segments really brings your communications to life.

By targeting your segments, you’ll be delivering the right message to the right person, in the right context.

Tactic #4 – Personalization

Personalization

Further increase the effectiveness of your marketing efforts by personalizing your customer engagements.

The conversion rate for personalized emails are 6x higher
than generic emails. After all, who doesn’t like content specifically designed
and chosen to meet your unique needs?

Hyper-relevant content, such as abandon cart emails are proven to drive results. 50% of users who engage with abandon cart content go on to complete their purchase. But, the impact of these communications would be significantly reduced if customers were directed to generic product grids, once again emphasizing the importance of creating visually appealing and shoppable landing pages.

Personalization drives a response from audiences, but the relevancy
of your landing pages is was makes them act.

Put it into action

Using rich content across all stages of the customers’
journey helps you build stronger relationships with them. This, in turn, helps
you pave the way to purchase and customer retention.

To learn more how to put these tactics into action, check out our webinar: 4 tactics for increasing online engagement.

The post How to increase online engagement appeared first on dotdigital blog.

Reblogged 1 month ago from blog.dotdigital.com

dotdigital at MagentoLive Australia 2019

The latter was the first event for us as dotdigital, where the tradeshow was an exciting stage to share ideas and network with some of the biggest innovators in ecommerce. MagentoLive was a proud moment for the dotdigital family, as our Founder and President, Tink Taylor, introduced dotdigital and took the room through our rebranding journey during his presentation.

While speaking to the Australian media present on site about the rebranding, Tink said, “When we started 20 years ago, dotmailer as it was had 4,500 lines of code. We’ve now got 1.5 million lines of code and counting. Over time the functionality and capability of the platform has grown, it’s gotten deeper, wider, and broader, meanwhile the perception of what we do has probably stayed the same.”

“dotdigital’s
platform, which we now call Engagement Cloud, allows for much more
sophisticated segmentation, personalisation, and automation than simply
batch-and-blast’
email marketing
.
Changing the name now gives the company a genuine
opportunity to explain all the stuff we’ve built over the years,”
added
Tink.

With a deep dive into dotdigital Engagement Cloud, the omnichannel customer engagement platform, he also touched on key findings from the annual report, Hitting the Mark Australia 2018.

MagentoLive took place at ICC Sydney with a keynote session from Mark Lavelle, CEO at Magento, an Adobe Company, providing an update on the growing momentum of Magento – a platform to connect with existing and potential customers. MagentoLive provided an opportunity to witness and discover new developments in the world of digital commerce and the Magento ecosystem in the APAC region.

Accolade Wines sees an exponential growth with dotdigital

With an increasing number of Australian brands adopting basic marketing automation, we had our very own Amy Goodsell, Business Development Manager at Accolade Wines, highlight the brand’s transformative experience with dotdigital.

Amy speaks about Accolade Wines’ marketing automation success story:

As our customer database grew over time, we were worried about the workload on each of our consumer team members. It was clear that in order to achieve our growth aspirations, we needed a scalable model to simplify the insanely complex business model and recreate a more personalized experience for our customers. We had no idea at that time, but what we needed was dotdigital.

Amy presenting at MagentoLive Australia 2019

A celebration to a promising year ahead

The annual pre-MagentoLive dinner, with exclusive invite-only, was a great way to settle into the conference. Hosted by Peter Sheldon, Senior Director Strategy at Magento, an Adobe Company, and Tink Taylor, Founder and President of dotdigital, it was a relaxed evening at Australia’s most awarded fine dining steak restaurant, Prime.

All good things must come to an end…after the afterparty

For the third year in a row, dotdigital has sponsored the MagentoLive afterparty and it has become one of the must-do events after the conference. We would like to say a massive thank you to the additional sponsors as it was a pleasure to stand alongside Braintree, Netstarter, and Shippit for the MagentoLive after party at the Watershed Hotel!

Here’s to an exciting year ahead for dotdigital’s operation Down Under!

Follow in the footsteps of Accolate Wines, and start your journey to marketing automation success: book a demo here.

The post dotdigital at MagentoLive Australia 2019 appeared first on dotdigital blog.

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“There is no limit to what we, as women, can accomplish”

For well over a century International Women’s Day has celebrated the social, economic, cultural and political achievements of women and accelerated the call for women’s equality.

Today, the fight continues. Thanks to the progress of technology, we’re now exposed to more stories of women’s courage, ingenuity, and dedication than ever before. As a result, inspiration is everywhere.

Jennie Myring, Director of
Professional Services

I’m constantly inspired by stories of women who refuse to take no for an answer and never second guess themselves.

I
love to see light being shed on exceptional women throughout history, who have
had the courage to do what’s right and be themselves. Such as the remarkable
mathematicians in Hidden Figures who made a significant impact on the early
years of the NASA Space Program. They were strong, intelligent women who built each
other up and succeeded in the face of racism and sexism. Or, Erin Brockovich,
who never gave up and fought to get justice for everyone effected by the
Hinkley drinking water contamination.

And,
anyone who knows me would also be aware of my guilty pleasure for Call the Midwife.
Based on memoirs of Jennifer Worth, the show about the nuns of Poplar working
as midwives in the 1950s demonstrates the importance of female friendship and
support. Plus, I do love watching babies being born!

Considering
the importance of film and TV as a medium for information, it’s important that
these stories are told to empower and inspire generations to come.

Amie Lane, Head of Events

Amie Lane

Michelle Obama has always
inspired me and after reading ‘becoming’ I’m even more captivated by her. From her iconic fashion looks to her contagious positivity, her messages are profound and bold. I love how
she pushes forward the idea that we should always prioritize self-care, use our
own voices for change, and be ourselves — unapologetically.

The fact that she
is refreshing candid about how she grew up, the pressures she faced
in the White House, and her family-first priorities – it helps to show that
life is hard, but we can all seek out the best balance possible for ourselves.

It’s
hard to summarize why Michelle Obama is such an inspiration to me so maybe it
would help to use some of her own words:

  1. “One of the lessons that I grew up with was to always stay true to yourself and never let what somebody else says distract you from your goals. And so, when I hear about negative and false attacks, I really don’t invest any energy in them, because I know who I am.”
  2. “Do not bring people in your life who weigh you down. And trust your instincts … good relationships feel good. They feel right. They don’t hurt. They’re not painful. That’s not just with somebody you want to marry, but it’s with the friends that you choose. It’s with the people you surround yourselves with.”
  3. “Women in particular need to keep an eye on their physical and mental health, because if we’re scurrying to and from appointments and errands, we don’t have a lot of time to take care of ourselves. We need to do a better job of putting ourselves higher on our own “to do” list.”
  4. “Don’t ever make decisions based on fear. Make decisions based on hope and possibility. Make decisions based on what should happen, not what shouldn’t.”
  5. “Like I tell my daughters, women and girls can do whatever they want…..there’s no limit to what we, as women can, accomplish.”

Michelle Obama is extraordinarily relatable and down to
earth – making her more real to all of us. She has continuously demonstrated
the capacity to lead by example, to balance conflicting roles, to raise two
strong daughters, and to still be in a loving marriage despite a lot of
external pressure. To me she will always remain
an inspiration for women and girls everywhere.

Don’t you want to be her friend? I do.

Julia
Neuhold, Product Marketing Executive

While some may
still find the term ‘feminism’ difficult to grasp – Feminist Fight Club brings
it home. Every woman will recognize at least one situation described in the
book. From being interrupted in a meeting you’re chairing and asked to get
coffee, to being excluded from team building exercises because it’s assumed
that “fantasy football just isn’t for women”. Sexism in the workplace is very
much active, but it’s often so subtle that it goes unnoticed. In the Feminist
Fight Club, Jessica Bennett manages to not only pinpoint the issue, she also
provides ‘battle tactics’ on how to turn sexist situations around. Or as
Bennett puts it; how to “carry yourself with the confidence of a mediocre white
man”. The Feminist Fight Club is relatable, and it’s absolutely hilarious.

But the main reason
why I recommend this book to every young woman kick-starting her career is the
underlying essence of the book: Women supporting women. It highlights the
importance of making an active effort to mentor and empower female colleagues.
Making space for them to present their ideas, acknowledge their achievements, to
listen and to promote them in whatever way possible. After all, we’re all part
of the fight club. If we like it or not.

Adele Boesinger, Internal Trainer

 “If you really prepare for something, you’re more likely to have success … but when you fail, you do get stronger.”

Adele Boesinger

The term ‘legend’ is bandied around an awful lot. So much in fact, that when it comes to describing athletes like Paula Radcliffe, it kind of feels inadequate. The quote above is one of main from her that have inspired me, personally, professionally, and in pursuit of my running goals.

To me, she is an icon – and not just in the running
community. Not only does she still hold the women’s marathon world record – an incredible
2:15:25 – she has also won both the London and New York Marathons three times over,
won major international championships, and competed in four Olympic Games. In
the process, she has inspired millions of female runners around the world to
unleash their potential. And I’m proud to include myself among them.

Watching her battle through injuries and adversities
has taught me to never to give up, and not be afraid to push my boundaries.
Though she hung up her competitive racing shoes in 2015, her legend and love of
running is as strong as ever. I recently heard at speak at the National Running
Show in Birmingham where she shared stories of overcoming training battles. Something
that really resounded with me was her advice to “tak[e] it steadily, day by
day. Set baby targets. And bring the same dedication to your rehabilitation as
you would bring to your training.”

Whether it’s a tough run, or a difficult day,
Paula’s attitude toward her sport and training really resonates with the outlook
I try to have on life in general. Her career, words and perspective on life
will continue to be an inspiration to me.

Sanam Arshad, Online Marketing Executive

Sanam Arshad

On a day like
today, I want to celebrate my inspirational sister, Saima Thompson. 

She’s a force to be
reckoned with. She’s a restaurateur, blogger, inspirational speaker, and doing
all this whilst living with stage 4 lung cancer at 29 years old.

Since being given
the bombshell diagnosis, Saima hasn’t let cancer stop her, it’s made her
thrive. During her own personal journey that is cancer, she still wants to help
others. We come from a south Asian family, and she found there was a big issue
in our community around an unwillingness to discuss health issues. So, Saima
has made it her mission to demystify cancer and get south Asians talking open
about the disease.

Saima has always
put others first. As the oldest of four sisters, she has always protected the
family and supported us, no matter what. She’s always fought for what she
believes, and her efforts have been recognized publicly! With the help of her
blog, Curry and Cancer, Saima has been
raising awareness and encouraging conversations on BBC London and in the Houses
of Parliament.

Each day, Saima
never fails to inspire me. She’s made me see that life is what you make it and
the small things that you’d normally worry about, just don’t matter. She’s
showed me that no matter what obstacles you come across, there should always be
a drive to make things better. Listen to your body, take time out for yourself
and love the ones closest to you.

Jenna Paton, Content Executive

Jenna Paton

My first exposure
to gender bias (that I can remember) came while watching Legally Blonde.

Yes. I do mean the
brilliant rom-com starring Reese Witherspoon.

Stereotyped as a dumb blonde, no one expected much from Elle Woods. She was objectified and demeaned by those around her, by men and women alike. She didn’t fit in. She wore pink, liked getting manicures, and carried her tiny dog around in her purse. She didn’t belong among the scholars at Harvard Law School. But, Elle refused to change to fit in.

She smashed down the walls that said she wouldn’t make it as a lawyer. In the process, she demonstrated the importance of staying true to yourself and supporting those around you. Whether it was the woman who did her nails, her socially awkward classmate, or her ex-boyfriend’s fiancé, Elle was there to help people when they needed it, simply because she could. She refused to change who she was. Yes, she liked shopping, popular culture and pampering herself, but why would that mean she wouldn’t be a good lawyer?

This movie came out when I was 8 years-old. It was a couple of years before I watched it for the first time, and a couple more before I properly understood it, but when I did, I was changed for the better. Elle Woods taught me to be that it’s always okay to be myself, and to accept others for the same, to never let gender or stereotyping hold me back. If I want something, I can achieve it, as long as I put my mind to it.


International Women’s
Day belongs to all groups, collectively, everywhere. The pursuit of gender equality
is simply a pursuit of basic human rights. Make everyday International Women’s
Day and embrace #balanceforbetter for good.  

The post “There is no limit to what we, as women, can accomplish” appeared first on dotdigital blog.

Reblogged 1 month ago from blog.dotdigital.com

dotdigital Summit 2019: an interview with Vanessa Vallely OBE

Since 2008, Vanessa has been bestowing her business tips and advice on audiences – leaving them inspired and motivated. And, this year, she’ll be joining the amazing panel of speakers in our first-ever personal development track.

In anticipation of International Women’s Day on Friday 8 March, we could think of no one better to catch up with than Vanessa.

Can you tell us a little about your background? Where you’ve come from, where you’ve worked, how you got to where you are today?

I grew up in Hackney, East London. I left school at
16 with an ambition to land myself a job in Banking in the city. Academically,
I didn’t do too well at school, as there were other things going on in my life
at the time. I managed to scrape a few C’s grades in terms of my GCSE’s, but it
certainly wasn’t reflective of what I could have got if things were different
and I would have been able to get my head down to study. I managed to get my
first job in a bank, which I subsequently lost after six months! At the time, I
thought the world was over! My early career taught me a lot of lessons from a
very early age, which on reflection was an invaluable education for the more
senior roles I would eventually go on to take. What followed was over 25
different job positions across nine financial organisations up to Chief Operating
Officer. I left the corporate world to pursue my passion to help to progress
the careers of women through my company, WeAreTheCity.  I am now CEO of two businesses, I sit on a
couple of boards and was recently awarded an OBE from Prince Charles for my services
to women and the economy.

What inspired you to get involved with gender equality and motivational speaking?

Definitely the lack of
women at senior levels within the organisations I worked for. I was often the
only woman at my organisations’ leadership table. Outside of my day job, in
2008, I set up WeAreTheCity to help women progress in their careers. It was
more of a hobby than a commercial business. I was frustrated as there was lots
of different activities going on for women who wanted to upskill but they were
spread all over the internet. I wanted to create a website that provided
resources and inspiration for women who were looking to progress. It was
actually my husband that pushed me to make WeAreTheCity a reality, as opposed
to a dream, as he bought me the website domain and built the website. We both
ran WeAreTheCity alongside our day jobs for six years before I finally plucked
up the courage to leave corporate and run WeAreTheCity full time. When I left,
we had a community of around 24,000 women and two corporate clients. Today we
have 120,000 members and we help over 120 companies to attract, retain and
develop female talent.

WeAreTheCity is now the one-stop-shop of information
and resources for professional women that I dreamed it would one day be. We
publish news that interests women and resources such as networks and events
where women can learn new skills. We also promote the activities of other
organisations who are running initiatives, programmes and events aiding female
progression and development.  Aside from
the website, we run over 15 learning events a year, two conferences for future
leaders
and technologists.
WeAreTheCity runs our annual Rising Star awards and TechWomen100
awards. We have a job board for clients
looking to attract female applicants, Gender Networks, which is a forum
and network for women running networks inside their firms, as well as a Careers Club
for women who want to really accelerate their career. We also generate various
different pieces of research each year, all focused on Gender.

Do you have a favourite experience from your career?

Like many careers,
there were high’s like promotions and there were low’s, like being passed over
for promotion. I think the best and most scary experience was actually leaving
corporate.

I thought when I left corporate,
given 25 years of experience that I would naturally have all the skills I
needed to set up and run a successful business. 
I was wrong!  It has taken me a
good five years to feel comfortable about Vanessa as a leader of her own
business as opposed to Vanessa as a corporate worker.

The highlight has to be when my
accountant told me the business had started to make a profit! It makes all the
hard work, sweat and tears worthwhile.

Other highlights include seeing
our Rising Star and TechWomen100 awards go from strength to strength. To think
what we do at WeAreTheCity has contributed in some small way to their ongoing
success is a truly amazing feeling. 

 What do you think the audience will gain from your talk?

My talk will
definitely provide the audience with food for thought as to how they can drive
their own careers. Their success is not just down to their line managers, it
has to come from them. Aside from sharing my own story, I will also share the
five component things that I believe accelerated my career. We will cover the
imposter syndrome, personal brand, networking, their digital footprint and the
importance of mentors and sponsors.  It
will be fast paced given the 20 minutes, however I can guarantee they will
leave inspired.

What are 3 top tips for success?

  1. Network to get work
  2. Your personal brand matters – be wary of the behaviours you exhibit
  3. Your personal brand matters – be wary of the behaviours you exhibit

What has been your biggest challenge during your career?

I spent the first half
of my career convincing people to give me a chance. Often I didn’t have the
backstory they wanted, the accent, the academic qualifications etc.  It took a long time for my voice to be heard,
but I never gave up.  If you want
something in life, you have to work for it. 
You will need people around you to open up doors of opportunity (see
tips above) and above all be resilient and tenacious. Another challenge came
when I had children, I was wrapped up in a world of guilt of being ambitious
and also wanting to be the best mum I could be. I did what I thought was best
at the time, there is no book written that can guide you on that one. You have
to make your own decisions.  My kids
still talk to me, so it couldn’t have been that bad!

What influential female figures have been the most inspiring to you and your career?

I have many role models, Tamara
Box at Reed Smith and my own mentor, Lara Morgan, as I deeply admire her
tenacity and drive. From a tech perspective, Jacqueline de Rojas CBE, Professor
Sue Black OBE, Dr Anne-Marie Imafidon MBE and Christina Scott, of News UK.  All of these are in senior tech roles and
continuously work to inspire other women. 
I also greatly admire Amanda McKenzie OBE, previous CMO at Aviva, was
heavily involved with WACL and now CEO at Business in the Community.  I have other women in what I like to call my
personal boardroom (see book by Zella King).  These are women I confide in on a weekly
basis, they know me, they get me and are not afraid to tell me if my idea won’t
work!

In your opinion, what is the largest barrier to women at work and how can it be overcome?

I have a bit of a thing about the
word barriers!  We can all say there are
barriers, things stopping us doing this, doing that etc, however it is how we
overcome our perceptions of those barriers that we need to focus on.  There are still a number of industries where
there are lots of women at the top, but no room for the next generations to
move in to their positions. These senior women should be clearing paths for
their future leaders and offering mentoring and sponsorship.  There are also a number of industries that
are still male dominated, and yes if the culture is stuck in the dark ages,
that can be hard.  However, if bad
behaviour is stopping you progressing, you need to call that out.   Often, and without generalising for every
woman, we are put off by a set of characteristics that we believe are needed
for certain roles.  We have to challenge
our thinking, disrupt the perception and take a risk.  We can bring our own unique style to any
role.  Sometimes the biggest barrier is
actually ourselves.  Ask yourself the
question, what is really holding me back! If it’s the firm you are in and its
culture, then make the move and go somewhere where your talents are both
appreciated and nurtured!

What piece of advice would you give to your younger self?

To just chill a little bit and
appreciate that things often take time. I was very ambitious when I was younger
and expected to climb mountains in months instead of years.  I would also advise myself not to beat myself
up to hard for the mistakes I made. These were not actually mistakes, they were
opportunities to learn and grow and that I wouldn’t always get things right!

And if you could meet any woman from history, who would it be?

It would have to be Oprah Winfrey and Michelle Obama.


Spaces are limited! Don’t miss out on your chance to learn, grow and get inspired at this year’s dotdigital Summit. Get your tickets today.

The post dotdigital Summit 2019: an interview with Vanessa Vallely OBE appeared first on dotdigital blog.

Reblogged 1 month ago from blog.dotdigital.com

Affordable, Stat-Based Retail Strategy For Your Agency’s Clients

Posted by MiriamEllis

Retail clients are battling tough economics offline and tough competitors online. They need every bit of help your agency can give them. 

I was heartened when 75 percent of the 1,400+ respondents to the Moz State of Local SEO Industry Report 2019 shared that they contribute to offline strategy recommendations either frequently or at least some of the time. I can’t think of a market where good and relatively inexpensive experiments are more needed than in embattled retail. The ripple effect of a single new idea, offered up generously, can spread out to encompass new revenue streams for the client and new levels of retention for your agency.

And that’s why win-win seemed written all over three statistics from a 2018 Yes Marketing retail survey when I read it because they speak to motivating about one quarter to half of 1,000 polled customers without going to any extreme expense. Take a look:

I highly recommend downloading Yes Marketing’s complete survey which is chock-full of great data, but today, let’s look at just three valuable stats from it to come up with an actionable strategy you can gift your offline retail clients at your next meeting.

Getting it right: A little market near me

For the past 16 years, I’ve been observing the local business scene with a combination of professional scrutiny and personal regard. I’m inspired by businesses that open and thrive and am saddened by those that open and close.

Right now, I’m especially intrigued by a very small, independently-owned grocery store which set up shop last year in what I’ll lovingly describe as a rural, half-a-horse town not far from me. This locale has a single main street with less than 20 businesses on it, but I’m predicting the shop’s ultimate success based on several factors. A strong one is that the community is flanked by several much larger towns with lots of through traffic and the market is several miles from any competitor. But other factors which match point-for-point with the data in the Yes Marketing survey make me feel especially confident that this small business is going to “get it right”. 

Encourage your retail clients to explore the following tips.

1) The store is visually appealing

43–58 percent of Yes Marketing’s surveyed retail customers say they’d be motivated to shop with a retailer who has cool product displays, murals, etc. Retail shoppers of all ages are seeking appealing experiences.

At the market near me, there are many things going on in its favor. The building is historic on the outside and full of natural light on this inside, and the staff sets up creative displays, such as all of the ingredients you need to make a hearty winter soup gathered up on a vintage table. The Instagram crowd can have selfie fun here, and more mature customers will appreciate the aesthetic simplicity of this uncluttered, human-scale shopping experience.

For your retail clients, it won’t break the bank to become more visually appealing. Design cues are everywhere!

Share these suggestions with a worthy client:

Basic cleanliness is the starting point

This is an old survey, but I think we’re safe to say that at least 45 percent of retail customers are still put off by dirty premises — especially restrooms. Janitorial duties are already built into the budget of most businesses and only need to be accomplished properly. I continuously notice how many reviewers proclaim the word “clean” when a business deserves it.

Inspiration is affordable

Whatever employees are already being paid is the cost of engaging them to lend their creativity to creating merchandise displays that draw attention and/or solve problems. My hearty winter soup example is one idea (complete with boxed broth, pasta, veggies, bowls, and cookware). 

For your retail client? It might be everything a consumer needs to recover from a cold (medicine, citrus fruit, electric blanket, herbal tea, tissue, a paperback, a sympathetic stuffed animal, etc.). Or everything one needs to winterize a car, take a trip to a beach, build a beautiful window box, or pamper a pet. Retailers can inexpensively encourage the hidden artistic talents in staff.

Feeling stuck? The Internet is full of free retail display tips, design magazines cost a few bucks, and your clients’ cable bills already cover a subscription to channels like HGTV and the DIY network that trade on style. A client who knows that interior designers are all using grey-and-white palettes and that one TV ad after another features women wearing denim blue with aspen yellow right now is well on their way to catching customers’ eyes.

Aspiring artists live near your client and need work

The national average cost to have a large wall mural professionally painted is about $8,000, with much less expensive options available. Some retailers even hold contests surrounding logo design, and an artist near your client may work quite inexpensively if they are trying to build up their portfolio. I can’t predict how long the Instagram mural trend will last, but wall art has been a crowd-pleaser since Paleolithic times. Any shopper who stops to snap a photo of themselves has been brought in close proximity to your front door.

I pulled this word cloud out of the reviews of the little grocery store:

While your clients’ industries and aesthetics will vary, tell them they can aim for a similar, positive response from at least 49 percent of their customers with a little more care put into the shopping environment.

2) The store offers additional services beyond the sale of products

19–40 percent of survey respondents are influenced by value-adds. Doubtless, you’ve seen the TV commercials in which banks double as coffee houses to appeal to the young, and small hardware chains emphasize staff expertise over loneliness in a warehouse. That’s what this is all about, and it can be done at a smaller scale, without overly-strapping your retail clients.

At the market near me, reviews like this are coming in:

The market has worked out a very economic arrangement with a massage therapist, who can build up their clientele out of the deal, so it’s a win for everybody.

For your retail clients, sharing these examples could inspire appealing added services:

The cost of these efforts is either the salary of an employee, nominal or free.

3) The store hosts local events

20–36 percent of customers feel the appeal of retailers becoming destinations for things to learn and do. Coincidentally, this corresponds with two of the tasks Google dubbed micro-moments a couple of years back, and while not everyone loves that terminology, we can at least agree that large numbers of people use the Internet to discover local resources.

At the market near me, they’re doing open-mic readings, and this is a trend in many cities to which Google Calendar attests:

For your clients, the last two words of that event description are key. When there’s a local wish to build community, retail businesses can lend the space and the stage. This can look like:

Again, costs here can be quite modest and you’ll be bringing the community together under the banner of your business.

Putting it in writing

The last item on the budget for any of these ventures is whatever it costs to publicize it. For sure, your client will want:

  • A homepage announcement and/or one or more blog posts
  • Google Posts, Q&A, photos and related features
  • Social mentions
  • If the concept is large enough (or the community is small) some outreach to local news in hopes of a write-up and inclusion of local/social calendars
  • Link building would be great if the client can afford a reasonable investment in your services, where necessary
  • And, of course, be sure your client’s local business listings are accurate so that newcomers aren’t getting lost on their way to finding the cool new offering

Getting the word out about events, features, and other desirable attributes don’t have to be exorbitant, but it will put the finishing touch on ensuring a community knows the business is ready to offer the desired experience.

Seeing opportunity

Sometimes, you’ll find yourself in a client meeting and things will be a bit flat. Maybe the client has been disengaged from your contract lately, or sales have been leveling out for lack of new ideas. That’s the perfect time to put something fresh on the table, demonstrating that you’re thinking about the client’s whole picture beyond CTR and citations.

One thing that I find to be an inspiring practice for agencies is to do an audit of competitors’ reviews looking for “holes” In many communities, shopping is really dull and reviews reflect that, with few shoppers feeling genuinely excited by a particular vertical’s local offerings. Your client could be the one to change that, with a little extra attention from you.

Every possibility won’t be the perfect match for every business, but if you can help the company see a new opportunity, the few minutes spent brainstorming could benefit you both.

Sign up for The Moz Top 10, a semimonthly mailer updating you on the top ten hottest pieces of SEO news, tips, and rad links uncovered by the Moz team. Think of it as your exclusive digest of stuff you don’t have time to hunt down but want to read!

Reblogged 1 month ago from tracking.feedpress.it

14 SEO Predictions for 2019 & Beyond, as Told by Mozzers

Posted by TheMozTeam

With the new year in full swing and an already busy first quarter, our 2019 predictions for SEO in the new year are hopping onto the scene a little late — but fashionably so, we hope. From an explosion of SERP features to increased monetization to the key drivers of search this year, our SEO experts have consulted their crystal balls (read: access to mountains of data and in-depth analyses) and made their predictions. Read on for an exhaustive list of fourteen things to watch out for in search from our very own Dr. Pete, Britney Muller, Rob Bucci, Russ Jones, and Miriam Ellis!

1. Answers will drive search

People Also Ask boxes exploded in 2018, and featured snippets have expanded into both multifaceted and multi-snippet versions. Google wants to answer questions, it wants to answer them across as many devices as possible, and it will reward sites with succinct, well-structured answers. Focus on answers that naturally leave visitors wanting more and establish your brand and credibility. [Dr. Peter J. Meyers]

Further reading:

2. Voice search will continue to be utterly useless for optimization

Optimizing for voice search will still be no more than optimizing for featured snippets, and conversions from voice will remain a dark box. [Russ Jones]

Further reading:

3. Mobile is table stakes

This is barely a prediction. If your 2019 plan is to finally figure out mobile, you’re already too late. Almost all Google features are designed with mobile-first in mind, and the mobile-first index has expanded rapidly in the past few months. Get your mobile house (not to be confused with your mobile home) in order as soon as you can. [Dr. Peter J. Meyers]

Further reading:

4. Further SERP feature intrusions in organic search

Expect Google to find more and more ways to replace organic with solutions that keep users on Google’s property. This includes interactive SERP features that replace, slowly but surely, many website offerings in the same way that live scores, weather, and flights have. [Russ Jones]

Further reading:

5. Video will dominate niches

Featured Videos, Video Carousels, and Suggested Clips (where Google targets specific content in a video) are taking over the how-to spaces. As Google tests search appliances with screens, including Home Hub, expect video to dominate instructional and DIY niches. [Dr. Peter J. Meyers]

Further reading:

6. SERPs will become more interactive

We’ve seen the start of interactive SERPs with People Also Ask Boxes. Depending on which question you expand, two to three new questions will generate below that directly pertain to your expanded question. This real-time engagement keeps people on the SERP longer and helps Google better understand what a user is seeking. [Britney Muller]

Further reading:

7. Local SEO: Google will continue getting up in your business — literally

Google will continue asking more and more intimate questions about your business to your customers. Does this business have gender-neutral bathrooms? Is this business accessible? What is the atmosphere like? How clean is it? What kind of lighting do they have? And so on. If Google can acquire accurate, real-world information about your business (your percentage of repeat customers via geocaching, price via transaction history, etc.) they can rely less heavily on website signals and provide more accurate results to searchers. [Britney Muller]

Further reading:

8. Business proximity-to-searcher will remain a top local ranking factor

In Moz’s recent State of Local SEO report, the majority of respondents agreed that Google’s focus on the proximity of a searcher to local businesses frequently emphasizes distance over quality in the local SERPs. I predict that we’ll continue to see this heavily weighting the results in 2019. On the one hand, hyper-localized results can be positive, as they allow a diversity of businesses to shine for a given search. On the other hand, with the exception of urgent situations, most people would prefer to see best options rather than just closest ones. [Miriam Ellis]

Further reading:

9. Local SEO: Google is going to increase monetization

Look to see more of the local and maps space monetized uniquely by Google both through Adwords and potentially new lead-gen models. This space will become more and more competitive. [Russ Jones]

Further reading:

10. Monetization tests for voice

Google and Amazon have been moving towards voice-supported displays in hopes of better monetizing voice. It will be interesting to see their efforts to get displays in homes and how they integrate the display advertising. Bold prediction: Amazon will provide sleep-mode display ads similar to how Kindle currently displays them today. [Britney Muller]

11. Marketers will place a greater focus on the SERPs

I expect we’ll see a greater focus on the analysis of SERPs as Google does more to give people answers without them having to leave the search results. We’re seeing more and more vertical search engines like Google Jobs, Google Flights, Google Hotels, Google Shopping. We’re also seeing more in-depth content make it onto the SERP than ever in the form of featured snippets, People Also Ask boxes, and more. With these new developments, marketers are increasingly going to want to report on their general brand visibility within the SERPs, not just their website ranking. It’s going to be more important than ever for people to be measuring all the elements within a SERP, not just their own ranking. [Rob Bucci]

Further reading:

12. Targeting topics will be more productive than targeting queries

2019 is going to be another year in which we see the emphasis on individual search queries start to decline, as people focus more on clusters of queries around topics. People Also Ask queries have made the importance of topics much more obvious to the SEO industry. With PAAs, Google is clearly illustrating that they think about searcher experience in terms of a searcher’s satisfaction across an entire topic, not just a specific search query. With this in mind, we can expect SEOs to more and more want to see their search queries clustered into topics so they can measure their visibility and the competitive landscape across these clusters. [Rob Bucci]

Further reading:

13. Linked unstructured citations will receive increasing focus

I recently conducted a small study in which there was a 75% correlation between organic and local pack rank. Linked unstructured citations (the mention of partial or complete business information + a link on any type of relevant website) are a means of improving organic rankings which underpin local rankings. They can also serve as a non-Google dependent means of driving traffic and leads. Anything you’re not having to pay Google for will become increasingly precious. Structured citations on key local business listing platforms will remain table stakes, but competitive local businesses will need to focus on unstructured data to move the needle. [Miriam Ellis]

Further reading:

14. Reviews will remain a competitive difference-maker

A Google rep recently stated that about one-third of local searches are made with the intent of reading reviews. This is huge. Local businesses that acquire and maintain a good and interactive reputation on the web will have a critical advantage over brands that ignore reviews as fundamental to customer service. Competitive local businesses will earn, monitor, respond to, and analyze the sentiment of their review corpus. [Miriam Ellis]

Further reading:

We’ve heard from Mozzers, and now we want to hear from you. What have you seen so far in 2019 that’s got your SEO Spidey senses tingling? What trends are you capitalizing on and planning for? Let us know in the comments below (and brag to friends and colleagues when your prediction comes true in the next 6–10 months). 😉

Sign up for The Moz Top 10, a semimonthly mailer updating you on the top ten hottest pieces of SEO news, tips, and rad links uncovered by the Moz team. Think of it as your exclusive digest of stuff you don’t have time to hunt down but want to read!

Reblogged 1 month ago from tracking.feedpress.it

dotdigital Summit 2019: an interview with Cate Murden

Cate Murden PUSH

The complex and ever-changing world we live in isn’t only impacting our ability to engage with our customers, it’s also having a significant effect on our lives at work. As a result, stress and stress-related illnesses are hugely on the rise.

Cate Murden, founder of PUSH Body and Mind, has been
affected by this, just like so many of us. During her talk, Cate will be
breaking down the importance of putting yourself first, and sharing with you,
the tools she used to improve her energy levels and shift into a positive
mind-set.

We sat down with her to discover a little bit more.

Hi Cate, can you tell us a bit more about what PUSH is?

PUSH Mind
and Body is a business consultancy grounded in human behavior. We answer
business problems with people-focused solutions and, consequently, help people,
teams and companies to work better.

What made you decided to start this new business?

After a
16-year career in media, I was signed off with stress. Having survived this,
frankly, awful period, I realized that I wanted to help ensure that no one else
went through what had happened. And, so, the concept for PUSH was formed – from
a genuine desire to help busy professionals live and work better.

Can you tell us about a favorite moment from your career?

We
created and curated an event in August last year supporting mental health and
resilience in the workplace. It was an incredibly sunny day and we were in a
rooftop venue with four unbelievable speakers and over 150 guests. It was an
amazingly powerful moment – firstly in what we were starting to achieve with
our vision and mission and, secondly, how far we had come as a business.

What are the biggest work goals you’re currently working towards?

What we
really want is to help companies realize that their people are their most
unique differentiator and yet, currently, corporate culture is slowly breaking
them.

We HAVE
to change this before more of the unthinkable happens and, you know what? That
means more successful companies and happier people. It’s really not that hard.

During your talk building resilience in the 20th century – what do you think the audience will gain from your talk?

I really
hope people leave my talk realizing they’re the most important people in their
worlds. And, hopefully, I can give them some valuable advice in how to be the
very best they can be.

What are your three top tips for success?

  1. Get a coach
  2. Start everyday with exercise
  3. Never accept no

What has been your biggest challenge over the last year?

My own
brain

Who or what inspires you most?

My partner. He inspires me, challenges me and helps me grow (and regularly drives me nuts too).

If you could predict one thing for the future what would it be?

The
fallout from Brexit is going to be really sh*t for everyone.

What advice would you want to give to your younger self?

Stop f*cking worrying – it’s always okay in the end.


Join Cate Murden for her personal development breakout session at the dotdigital Summit on Wednesday 20 March. Not got your tickets yet? Get them today.

The post dotdigital Summit 2019: an interview with Cate Murden appeared first on dotdigital blog.

Reblogged 1 month ago from blog.dotdigital.com

Segment your audience using loyalty insights

In today’s highly competitive, online
marketplace, it’s no longer enough to differentiate on price and logistics.
Stores need to do more to build better customer relationships. Why? Because the
one-on-one relationship common to brick-and-mortar stores is lost online. Yet,
unsurprisingly, customers still crave the person-to-person interaction.

With 91% of customers checking their inboxes daily, email offers the
perfect opportunity for the direct person-to-brand relationship customers
crave. On top of this, emails paired with your loyalty program perform 14 times better than regular marketing emails.

That’s why we’re excited to announce
that you can now harness the LoyaltyLion and Engagement Cloud integration to
segment your email list based on your customers’ loyalty behaviors. By
identifying your customers based on three categories – loyal, at-risk and in
need of winning back – you can serve up super-relevant content to secure
loyalty and re-engage customers that would otherwise churn.

So, what are the three key loyalty
segments to consider and how can you queue up the right emails to send those
particular customer groups?

Engage your most
loyal customers

On average, loyal customers spend 67% more than new ones. With carefully crafted and segmented loyalty emails, you can target these customers with the right message, so they’re encouraged to spend with you again – and sooner. Send emails that keep these customers updated about their points balance, the rewards they’ve gained and the new offers that are available to them. This way, they’ll be reminded of the benefits of shopping with you and will be more likely to return. You could also send prompts showing that they can earn points in ways they may not know about yet – such as writing product reviews or referring friends.

Prevent at-risk
customers

Customers who are classified as
“at-risk” are those who have not returned to purchase from you within a
particular time frame. As it costs five times more to acquire new customers
than it does to retain your existing ones, customers who are showing signs of
shopping elsewhere represent lost time and money.

By putting these customers into a
segment and targeting them with emails that surprise and delight them, you can
encourage them back to your site if their interest starts to fade.

Remind them why they chose to shop with you in the first place by showing personalized offers. These could be double points on products they’ve previously shown interest in or a free gift on their birthday. You could even use emails to notify them that you’ve moved them up a loyalty tier. This way, they’ll be attracted to return to your store to make the most of the new benefits they’ve unlocked.

Win customers back

Unfortunately, you can do all the hard
work to get your customers through the door but with an array of choices out
there, they can easily turn to shop with your competitors. You can now use your
loyalty segments and email strategy to identify and win back these lost
customers.

Send them emails that remind them that
your loyalty program exists. They might not know that they earned points when
they shopped with you the first time, or be aware of how they could be
redeeming them. To encourage re-engagement, showcase products they showed
interest in before and remind them why they trusted you to begin with.

You could even change the content of these emails, so your lost customers feel like they’re discovering you for the first time. Show them what’s trending on your site since they last shopped with you and the new behaviors you’ve added to your loyalty program since. Put phrases like “We missed you!” and “Here’s a welcome back offer” into your subject lines so these emails stand out in the inbox and appeal on a personal level.

Take notice and
you’ll reap the rewards

By altering your email content to match the loyalty behaviors of your customers, you’ll automatically see your customer engagement improve. Your emails will be highly relevant and appeal to the right customers on a more personal level. And, in the long run, this attention to detail will increase your customers’ lifetime value and reduce your risk of customer churn.


About LoyaltyLion

LoyaltyLion is a data-driven loyalty and engagement platform trusted by
thousands of ecommerce brands worldwide. Merchants use LoyaltyLion when they
want a fully customized loyalty program that is proven to increase customer
engagement, retention and spend. Stores using LoyaltyLion typically generate at
least $15 for every $1 they spend on the platform.

The post Segment your audience using loyalty insights appeared first on dotdigital blog.

Reblogged 2 months ago from blog.dotdigital.com

dotdigital Summit 2019: an interview with Richard Pacitti

As
part of our personal development track at the Summit this year, we will be
discussing many of these issues. Our speakers will be diving in deep and
showing us how to overcome and thrive in today’s complicated world.

We sat down with Richard Pacitti, Chief Executive of Mind in Croydon. Richard will be helping us embrace change and giving us the power to start meaningful conversations about mental health.

What do you think are the main things we need to think about when talking about mental health in the workplace?

It’s important that we understand a bit about mental health problems, and how we can notice them within ourselves and our colleagues. We need to understand simple things that we can do to create mentally healthy workplace and how we let our staff and colleagues know that it’s okay to talk about difficulties that they might be having.

What are your key tips on getting a healthy work/life balance?

The best thing you can do to make sure you’re getting a healthy work/life balance is to turn your work devices off when you’re not at work. The more you let work encroach on your private life, the less healthy the balance becomes.

What advice would give someone who is experiencing mental health problems, but cannot or does not want to talk about it to people at work?

Firstly, mental
health problems are really common. One in four people will experience a problem
at some time in their life. You might feel embarrassed or ashamed, but there is
absolutely no need to.

You might think that talking doesn’t help, but all the evidence points to the contrary – taking to other people can be really helpful. You’ll probably find that your employer will be understanding and very helpful. And don’t forget, you can always talk to people outside of work. Friends, family or even people you don’t know and have never met. There are so many helplines out there, designed precisely for that reason.

What would you like people to take away from your talk?

As well as some general information about mental health problems, I would like people to leave my session with a good understanding of how to promote good mental health, not just at work, but in life in general.

I
also want people to start thinking deeper about the role that technology plays both
at work, and in relation to our mental health and wellbeing. If you can make
yourself aware of its effect on you, you can act to stop it before it damages
your health.

Who or what inspires you most?

I get a lot of inspiration from great musician and songwriters, but I also find that just getting outside for a walk can inspire me. Especially near big, green spaces. I find that very inspirational.

If you could predict one thing for the future what would it be?

It’s less of a prediction, and more of a hope. If we’re going to remain sane, we need to spend more time with real people, and real things, and less time connected to our gadgets.

What piece of advice to your younger self?

Have the courage of your convictions.


Join Richard Pacitti for his personal development breakout session at the dotdigital Summit on Wednesday 20 March. Not got your tickets yet? Get them today.

The post dotdigital Summit 2019: an interview with Richard Pacitti appeared first on dotdigital blog.

Reblogged 2 months ago from blog.dotdigital.com