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Marketers who want true customer engagement, take heed!
The opportunity to engage on mobile is now! Brands (like yours) need to adopt a mobile-centric strategy if they wish to extend their reach, acquire and retain customers, and increase their marketing ROI.
Why’s that? Ultimately, it’s because consumers’ shopping habits rely heavily on the smartphone and its capabilities. Today we’re inseparable from our mobiles.
The device equips customers with:
Brands are under pressure to deliver a seamless ‘at-home’ experience now that the shopfront sits on the consumer’s coffee table. Since mobile is inherently personal to the individual, marketers need to be prioritizing personalization at every stage of the customer journey.
Here are 4 ways to deliver the best experience on mobile:
First impressions are what build the initial foundations of a long-lasting customer relationship. Brands aiming to nurture a loyal customer base should take an active interest in new subscribers. Winning them over on mobile can make all the difference.
The post-purchase journey is a honeymoon period (your customers are really into you, so it’s important to be really into them, too). This is where you can drive valuable mobile moments that build that all-important brand love.
Whether these messages are delivered via email, SMS or push, they need to be contextual and relevant. Every mobile moment should mean something to the customer.
Loyalty doesn’t come from one single purchase. Brands have got to invest in their customers – that means providing rich content and tailored product recommendations. It costs five times more to acquire a customer than to retain one, so nurturing tactics should be the cornerstone of your mobile marketing strategy.
Customers inevitably fall off the radar, and it’s a challenge for every business. Since acquisition is pricier than retention, marketers need to refine their re-engagement tactics and prevent customers from lapsing. But fear not: if you’re going to win them back, it’s going to be on mobile.
Audience segmentation is the most important tactic for marketers to practice. The experience on mobile must be as personalized as possible; consumers won’t engage with messages that lack context or relevancy.
So, when planning out your mobile strategy, think about the reasoning behind every communication in the customer lifecycle. The devil is always in the data.
For deeper insights on how to engage customers on a mobile device, download our best practice guide here.
The post 4 ways to achieve customer engagement on a mobile device appeared first on The Marketing Automation Blog.
Flashy email design, gripping email copy and intelligent personalization – these are the things most of us strive to deliver as email marketers. We want to get the look and feel of our brand spot on. Plus, we want to deliver memorable experiences that’ll help us shine So sometimes we overlook the bare necessities, like ‘Can my customer see what I’m seeing?’. Email mobile optimization is one of those fuzzy areas of email design: some brands will nail it as a priority, while others haven’t even got it on their radar. Here’s why it matters:
For retail and ecommerce marketers, mobile’s taken over the market share. Mcommerce sales worldwide reached an estimated $1.357 trillion in 2017, or 58.9% of ecommerce spending overall. By 2021, mcommerce will account for 72.9% of the ecommerce market.” And for B2B businesses, it’s a similar story: 76% of Gen X buyers and 84% of millennials said their mobile device was critical to their work.
Email is STILL the top channel for marketers looking to maximize on ROI, delivering £32 for every £1 you spend. But in order for it to fire in all cylinders, it’s got to be optimized for your customers’ viewing preferences.
Designing for mobile users shouldn’t be viewed as a separate component to your regular email design. Creating a smooth, effortless experience for your customers across all their touchpoints is the ultimate goal for any marketer – especially when 50% of consumers now regularly use more than four touch points during the buying process.
So the question is:
Every brand is different, and what works for your peers might not be the best fit for you. Deciding on the level of influence mobile has on your email design is the best way to ensure you’re optimizing content for your customers – without leaving any out in the cold.
Get to grips with just how many of your contacts open, click and convert on mobile devices. If you have a best-of-breed ESP, like dotmailer, you can access a detailed breakdown of email client share for every campaign you send. Find out the percentage of Iphone opens, for example, or build a more accurate picture of how many tablet engagers you’ve got on the books. A quick pointer: getting to grips with this information can also improve your send time optimization; a dip in mobile opens at certain times will highlight the times when it’s inopportune to push out marketing messages.
Once you’ve got the measure of mobile engagement, you can decide just how mobile you’re going to get. We’ve rounded up the important differences between mobile-friendly and mobile-responsive email design to help you make up your mind.
Mobile-friendly email design (sometimes called mobile-first or mobile-aware) is fixed width and optimized for reading on a handheld device. This design relies on a single column layout with large text and CTA buttons; the font size isn’t responsive, but is large enough to be read on smaller screens. Extra spacing around campaign elements allows for maximum ‘tappability’.
Mobile-friendly email designs are simple to create and guarantee customers will be about to view your creatives on any device. However, their primarily single-column layout offers limited design options, especially for meatier campaigns like newsletters.
Responsive email design uses CSS media queries to create fluid tables and images, allowing your campaign to adapt for different screen sizes and orientations. You can prioritize different layouts, font sizes, colors and even content based on the device customers are using. Previously, Gmail didn’t support media queries – but that’s no longer the case.
Using responsive email design gives you much more control over your campaigns. The drawback is that the design process is more complex and will require some coding. Some best-of-breed ESPs will have responsive design baked into their platform as standard; brands using dotmailer can select which email content blocks they want to display on what device. Plus, all of our templates are designed to be mobile responsive – even the free ones.
Hybrid email, sometimes called ‘spongy’ email, uses a combination of percentage-based widths, maximum-widths and clever and complex workaround coding for Outlook clients to ensure emails are adjusted based on a device’s width. Hybrid design offers marketers universal ‘friendliness’, but requires more development knowledge – and can get messy if left to inexperience. Always test any new design across multiple devices and email clients to ensure you’re delivering a consistent customer experience
If you’re interested in building email campaigns with hybrid design, we’re here to help you. dotmailer’s talented Digital Creatives have the full mix of design and coding skills, and can help your team execute beautiful, consistent mobile-optimized campaigns and pages. Get in touch with your Account Manger or check out our Creative Services page.
dotmailer has a guide that goes into more detail on mobile email design. You’ll get real-world examples for top brands, more insight and a handy list of 10 best practices to help you stand out in any inbox.
The real estate-heavy panels on mobile encompass multiple product images, more review sources, videos and, of course, Shopping ads.
The post Google updates mobile product knowledge panels to show even more info in one spot appeared first on Search Engine Land.
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Google’s site speed tool now compares your site to your competitors’ and tells you how many visitors your site is losing because of your load time.
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Mobile devices now account for nearly 60 percent of all searches. Are your local sites and landing pages in the best position to show up in the SERPs and engage mobile consumers? Join us for an in-depth look at how to optimize your location-based marketing strategy for the mobile consumer. We’ll…
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Posted by ronell-smith
Here I am, seated in a Manhattan, New York restaurant, staring at corned beef hash that looks and tastes like what I imagine dog food to look and taste like.
I’m pissed for two reasons:
In retrospect, I should have checked A and B on my phone before ordering the $25 plate of Alpo. And though I didn’t do that, other would-be customers will, which means the business owner or SEO had better follow the steps below if they wish to stay in business.
The bad news is I no longer relish the thought of eating at high-end NY restaurants; the good news is this experience totally reshaped the way I view mobile, opening my eyes to simple but very effective tactics businesses of all types can immediately put to use for their brands.
We’ve all heard how mobile is transforming the web experience, reshaping the landscape for marketers, brands and consumers.
As marketers, we now have to account for how our content will be accessed and consumed on mobile devices, whether that’s a phone, tablet or phablet. As brands, we realize our efforts will be judged not only on how well or high we show up in the SERPs, but also on much we can delight the on-the-go prospect who needs information that’s (a) fast, (b) accurate and (c) available from any device.
As prospects and consumers, we’ve come to know and value customer experience in large part because brands that use mobile to deliver what we need when we need it and in a way that’s easily consumed, have earned our attention — and maybe even our dollars.
But that’s where the similarities seemingly end. Marketers and brands seem to get so wrapped up in the technology (responsive design, anyone?) they forget that, at the end of the day, prospects want what they want right now — in the easiest-to-access way possible.
I’ve come to believe that, while marketers appreciate the overall value of mobile, they have yet to realize how, for customers, it’s all about what it allows them to accomplish.
At the customer/end-user level it’s not about mobile-friendly or responsive design; it’s about creating an enviable customer experience, one web searchers will reward you for with traffic, brand mentions and conversions.
I was alerted to the prominence of mobile phone use by noticing how many people sit staring at their phones while out at dinner, even as family members and friends are seated all around them. “How rude,” I thought. Then I realized it wasn’t only the people at restaurants; it’s people everywhere: walking down the street, driving (sadly and dangerously), sitting in movie theaters, at work, even texting while they talk on the phone.
One of my favorite comments with regard to mobile’s dominance comes with the Wizard of Moz himself, when he shared this tweet and accompanying image last year:
But my “aha!” moment happened last year, in Manhattan, during the corned beef hash episode.
After working until brunch, I…
That’s when it hit me that I’d made errors of omission at every step, in large part by leaving one very important element out of the process, but also by not thinking like a smart web user.
Normally my process is as follows, when I wish to enjoy a specific meal while traveling:
That’s when three things occurred to me like a brickbat to the noggin’:
(Eds. note: This post was created with small business owners (single or multiple location), or those doing Local SEO for SMBs, in mind, as I hope to inform them of how many individuals think about and use mobile, and how the marketers can get in front of them with relevant content. Also, I’d like to thank Cindy Krum of Mobile Moxie for encouraging me to write this post, and Local SEO savant Phil Rozek of Local Visibility System for making sure I colored within the lines.)
Image optimization is the quintessential low-hanging fruit of online marketing: easy to accomplish but typically overlooked.
For our purposes, we aren’t so much making them “mobile-friendly” as we are making them search-friendly, increasing the likelihood that Google’s crawlers can better decipher what they contain and deliver them for the optimal search query.
First and foremost, do not use a stock image if your goal is for searchers to find, read and enjoy your content. Just don’t. Also, given how much of a factor website speed is, minify your images to ensure they don’t hamper page speed load times.
But the three main areas I want us to focus on are file name, alt text and title text, and captions. My standard for each is summed up very well in a blog post from Ian Lurie, who proposes an ingenious idea:
The Blank Sheet of Paper Test: If you wrote this text on a piece of paper and showed it to a stranger, would they understand the meaning? Is this text fully descriptive?
With this thinking in mind, image optimization becomes far simpler:
“’Fully descriptive’ means ‘describes the thing to which it’s attached,’ not ‘describe the entire universe,'” he adds.
Also, invite customers to take and share pictures online (e.g., websites, Instagram, Yelp, Google) and include as much rich detail as possible.
What’s more, it might behoove you to have a Google Business View photo shoot, says Rozek. “Those show up most prominently (in the Knowledge Panel) for brand-name mobile searches in Google.”
Many prospects and customers use reviews as a make-or-break tactic when making purchases. Brands, realizing this, have taken note, making it their charge to get positive reviews.
But not all reviews are created equal.
Instead of making certain your brand gets positive reviews on the entirety of its products and services, redouble your efforts at getting positive reviews on your bread-and-butter services.
In many instances, what people have to say about your individual services and/or products matters more than your brand’s overall review ratings.
I learned this from talking to several uber-picky foodie friends who shared that the main thing they look for is a brand having an overall rating (e.g., on Yelp, Google, Angie’s List, Amazon, etc.) higher than 3.5, but who have customer comments glorifying the specific product they’re hoping to enjoy.
“These days, everyone is gaming the system, doing what they can to get their customers to leave favorable reviews,” said one friend, who lives in Dallas. “But discerning [prospects] are only looking at the overall rating as a beginning point. From there, they’re digging into the comments, looking to see what people have to say about the very specific thing they want. [Smart brands] would focus more on getting people to leave comments about the particular service they used, how happy they work with the result and how it compares to other [such services they’ve used]. We may be on our phones, but we’re still willing to dig into those comments.”
To take advantage of this behavior,
I serve as a horrible spokesperson for content brevity, but it matters a great deal to mobile searchers. What works fine on desktop is a clutter-fest on mobile, even for sites using responsive design.
As a general rule, simplicity wins.
For example, Whataburger’s mobile experience is uncluttered, appealing to the eye and makes it clear what they want me to do: learn about their specials or make a purchase:
On the other hand, McDonald’s isn’t so sure what I’m looking for, apparently:
Are they trying to sell me potatoes, convince me of how committed they are to freshness or looking to learn as much as they can about me? Or all of the above?
Web searchers have specific needs and are typically short on time and patience, so you have to get in front of them with the right message to have a chance.
When it comes to the content you deliver, think tight (shorter), punchy (attention-grabbing) and valuable (on- message for the query).
Like all of you, I’ve been using “near me” searches for years, especially when I travel. But over the last year, these searches have gotten more thorough and more accurate, in large part as a result of Google’s Mobile Update and because the search giant is making customer intent a priority.
In 2015, Google reported that “near me” searches increased by 34-fold since 2011.
And though most of these “near me” searches are for durable goods/appliances and their associated retailers, services, including “surgeons near me,” “plumbers near me,” “jobs near me,” etc., and other things that are typically in a high consideration set are growing considerably, according to Google via its website, thinkwithgoogle.com.
A recent case study of 82 websites (41, control group; 41, test group) shows just how dramatic the impact of optimizing a site for local intent can be. By tweaking the hours and directions page titles, descriptions and H1s to utilize the phrases “franchise dealer near me” and “nearest franchise dealer” the brand saw mobile impressions for “near me” more than double to 8,833 impressions and 46 clicks. (The control group’s “near me” impression share only rose 11%.)
We’ve all heard the statistics: The vast majority — in some circles the figure is 95% — of apps downloaded to mobile devices are never used. Don’t be deceived, however, into believing apps are irrelevant.
Nearly half of all time spent on the web is in apps.
This means that the mobile searchers looking for products or services in your area are likely using an app or, at the very least, prompted to enter/use an app.
For example, when I type “thai restaurant near me,” the first organic result is TripAdvisor.
Upon entering the site, the first (and preferred) action the brand would like for me to make is to download the TripAdvisor app:
Many times, a “near me” search will take us to content within an app, and we won’t even realize it until we see the “continue in XX app or visit the mobile site” banner.
And if a searcher doesn’t have the app installed, “Google can show an app install button. So, enabling your app for Google indexing could actually increase the installed base of the app,” writes Eric Enge of Stone Temple Consulting.
For brands, App Deep Linking (ADL), which he defines as “the ability for Google to index content from within an app and then display it as mobile search results,” has huge implications if utilized properly.
“Think about it,” he writes. “If your app is not one of the fortunate few that get most of the attention, but your app content ranks high in searches, then you could end up with a lot more users in your app than you might have had otherwise.”
(To access details on how to set up Google App Deep Linking, read Enge’s Search Engine Land article: SMX Advanced recap: Advanced Google App Deep Linking)
If your brand has an app, this is information you shouldn’t sleep on.
Typically, when I conduct a “near me” search, I click on/look through the images until I find one that fits what I’m looking for. Nine times out of ten (depending upon what I’m looking for), I’m either taken to content within an app or taken to a mobile site and prompted to download the app.
Seems to me that ADL would be a no-brainer.
For all the gnashing of teeth Google’s many actions/inactions provoke, the search giant deserves credit for making the needs of web searchers a priority.
Too often, we, as marketers, think first and foremost in this fashion:
I think Google is saying to us that the reverse needs to occur:
In this way, we’re placing the needs of web searchers ahead of the needs of the brand, which will be the winning combination for successful companies in the days ahead.
Brands will either follow suit or fall by the wayside.
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At dotmailer we try our best to keep the bad guys out, but if they already have your password, there is very little we can do to detect, and stop them logging in as you…unless, of course, you have already turned on two-factor authentication (2FA). Two-factor in most cases is something you know (your username/password), and something you have (a single use access code or authentication link).
There are various ways an attacker may have access to your login details, but some of the possible methods include:
If the computer you use to log in to your online accounts is infected with malware, it is possible that your keystrokes and even screen captures are being logged and sent back to the bad guys…..yep, including your passwords, and other authentication details.
If an attacker has access to the network from which you are logging on to an online service (e.g. public Wi-Fi hotspot), in some cases it may be possible to capture the data as it passes to the server…..yep, including your password, and other authentication details. This is where looking for HTTPS in your browser address bar becomes very important. At dotmailer, all authentication data passes over a secure channel, thus protecting you from this sort of attack.
It’s really important not to use the same password across different services. We’ve seen an awful lot of very big data breaches in the news recently, and the attackers have been using the stolen authentication details from these breaches to try and log on to other online services…with what seems to be a great deal of success! This sadly means that many people are still using the same password everywhere they go online. This is one of the reasons why your dotmailer password is set to expire, and you are asked for a new one every 90 days; and why you should be choosing something completely different every time. Simply incrementing that number at the end of your password is not cool!
As we get better at using good passwords, and preventing malware infections; sometime, the bad guys just find it easier to ask us for our passwords. At dotmailer, our support team will never contact you asking for your password.
If one of the above unfortunate events were to happen, 2FA adds another layer of defense, as the attacker would also need access to the authentication link or SMS code. In reality that would mean having access to your mailbox, or mobile phone. We’ve already seen that it’s possible that an attacker has obtained your password due to a compromised computer, or network; which is why we would always recommend using an “out-of-band” communication such as SMS as the means to deliver the 2FA authentication token where possible. dotmailer offers SMS 2FA to all customers. It’s simple to setup, and its free!
Without access to the authentication token, the attacker could of course try and brute force the code, but that is where our other controls such as failed login account lockouts kick in.
Log in to your account, and click the user icon in the top right, and select Account:
In the resulting window click on the “Account Settings” tab, and scroll down to the “Security” section. Simply tick the Two-factor authentication box, and enter your mobile phone number, and hit save settings at the bottom of the page.
Done! Congratulations, you have just gone one step further in protecting your valuable data.
Now you have protected your dotmailer account, check out TurnOn 2FA and see which of your other online services offer a similar feature, and SWITCH IT ON!
Check out my last post on protecting your online account from unauthorized access. See also our previous support article on securing your account with two-factor authentication, and for more general information on what dotmailer do to protect you and your data, please visit our Trust Centre.
Note: If you are a managed user, you will need to ask your account administrator to do this for you. For obvious security reasons, you will not be able to disable this feature without the help from our support team.
Australia has a resident population of more than 24 million and, according to eMarketer, the country’s ecommerce sales are predicted to reach A$32.56 billion by 2017. The country’s remote location in the APAC region means that unlike European countries or the USA, traditionally there have been a lack of global brands sold locally.
Of course, we also know that many expatriates, particularly from inside the Commonwealth, have made Australia their home and are keen to buy products they know and love from their country of origin.
All of these factors present a huge and potentially lucrative opportunity for non-Australian brands wanting to open up their new and innovative products to a fresh market, or compete for market share.
But it’s not just non-Australian retailers who are at an advantage here: Australia was late to the ecommerce party because native, established brands were trading well without it. Subsequently, Australian retailers’ ecommerce technology stacks are much more recent and not burdened by legacy systems. This makes it much easier to extend, or get started with, best-of-breed technologies and cash in on a market that’s booming. To put some of this into perspective, Magento’s innovative ecommerce platform currently takes 42% of Australia’s market share and the world’s first adopter of Magento 2.0 was an Australian brand.
The GST loophole
At the moment, local retailers are campaigning against a rule that exempts foreign websites from being charged a 10% general sales tax (GST) on purchases under A$1,000. And in 2013, Australian consumers made $3.11 billion worth of purchases under A$1,000.
While the current GST break appears to put non-Australian retailers at an advantage, Australian-based brands such as Harvey Norman are using it to their advantage by setting up ecommerce operations in Asia to enjoy the GST benefit.
Australian consumers have also countered the argument by saying that price isn’t always the motivator when it comes to making purchasing decisions.
It’s not a place where no man has gone before
Often, concerns around meeting local compliance and lack of overseas business knowledge prevent outsiders from taking the leap into cross-border trade. However, this ecommerce passport, created by Ecommerce Worldwide and NORA, is designed to support those considering selling in Australia. The guide provides a comprehensive look into everything from the country’s economy and trade status, to logistics and dealing with international payments.
Global expansion success stories are also invaluable sources of information. For instance, it’s not just lower-end retailers that are fitting the bill, with brands like online luxury fashion retailer Net-a-Porter naming Australia as one of its biggest markets.
How tech-savvy are the Aussies?
One of the concerns you might have as a new entrant into the market is how you’ll reach and sell to your new audience, particularly without having a physical presence. The good news is that more than 80% of the country is digitally enabled and 60% of mobile phone users own a smartphone – so online is deeply rooted into the majority of Australians’ lives. 
Marketing your brand
Heard the saying “Fire bullets then fire cannonballs”? In any case, you’ll want to test the waters and gauge people’s reactions to your product or service.
It all starts with the website because, without it, you’re not discoverable or searchable, and you’ve nowhere to drive people to when running campaigns. SEO and SEM should definitely be a priority, and an online store that can handle multiple regions and storefronts, like Magento, will make your life easier. A mobile-first mentality and well thought-out UX will also place you in a good position.
Once your new web store is set up, you should be making every effort to collect visitors’ email addresses, perhaps via a popover. Why? Firstly, email is one of the top three priority areas for Australian retailers, because it’s a cost-effective, scalable marketing channel that enables true personalization.
Secondly, email marketing automation empowers you to deliver the customer experience today’s consumer expects, as well as enabling you to communicate with them throughout the lifecycle. Check out our ‘Do customer experience masters really exist?’ whitepaper for some real-life success stories.
Like the Magento platform, dotmailer is set up to handle multiple languages, regions and accounts, and is designed to grow with you.
In summary, there’s great scope for ecommerce success in Australia, whether you’re a native bricks-and-mortar retailer, a start-up or a non-Australian merchant. The barriers to cross-border trade are falling and Australia is one of APAC’s most developed regions in terms of purchasing power and tech savviness.
We recently worked with ecommerce expert Chloe Thomas to produce a whitepaper on cross-border trade, which goes into much more detail on how to market and sell successfully in new territories. You can download a free copy here.
 Australian Passport 2015: Cross-Border Trading Report
 Australian Passport 2015: Cross-Border Trading Report