Last week Facebook announced their ‘Places’ service which allows users to display their current location through the site by “checking-in”. This is done in real time, so it allows people to share where they are, what they’re doing or even where they’re headed to. What’s also interesting is how users can easily tell if any of their friends are nearby. As everything is in real time, your news feed is updated every time one of your friends check in, which provides an ideal opportunity to spread exposure to your location! (Ideal for a shop or restaurant!)
So, how can a business benefit from Places?
Well, if your business is already on Facebook, then great news! Places will allow for businesses to search for and add their address as a ‘Place’. Alternatively, if a user has already created a place for your business, then you can claim ownership of this place. Not on Facebook yet? Get a Facebook Business Page now!
Great news then! But what can you do with a place!? Here are some ideas:
1. Increase exposure of your business to more people. Every time someone checks in their friends news feed is updated to show this. So, for example, if Friend A sees Friend B checking into your shop every day; then this could provide incentive for Friend A to see what’s so good about your ‘Place’.
2. Encourage visitors to check in at your ‘Place’. You could offer checked-in visitors a discount or one off special item to encourage this. Remember, when checked-in, all of the user’s friends will see this in their news feeds, which will increase exposure of your business to a wider audience. You just need to make sure visitors know they can check-in to your location; a nice poster or friendly member of staff can alert them to this!
3. Target local people with Facebook Ads. The targeting on Facebook Ads is very specific, so you could target users from your city and point them towards your places page. Combined with special offers, this could tempt users to come to your location and check in.
This is just scratching the surface of what’s possible. As Places grow bigger and used by more people, you can bet that more and more features will be added. And while Places is only currently available in the US, it will soon spread to cover more countries; so it’s a good idea to start your Places planning now!
Not on Facebook yet? What are you waiting for - get your Facebook Business Page now!
With the increase in mobile technology there has been a dramatic increase in the number of people searching the web on their phones. Phones like the iPhone even allow for applications that direct you straight to a company’s mobile website.
This growing trend has encouraged internet sites to adapt their websites to be mobile phone friendly. Most websites have been built to be viewed on different size monitors and different internet browsers but customers have failed to consider what the site would look like on a cell phone screen.
Check out how your website looks on an iPhone with our website for iPhone demo.
The creation of the iPhone and other high-tech mobile phones has paved the way for internet companies to redevelop sites to suit the new standards. New technology is constantly arising (like the new tablets such as iPad from apple) which is going to make internet browsing more accessible all over the world. By making your website adaptable to this new technology you are increasing the chances of users visiting your site and the possibility of conversion.
This is where Spiderscope comes in to play. We can provide your current site with the appropriate code it needs to be mobile ready. This new code will detect requests as they come in from mobile users and to respond back with webpage to suit.
Spiderscope has developed specialised, mobile website designs perfectly suited to the iPhone and smartphones such as the Nexus One. If your site doesn’t lend well to mobile browsing you will be loosing out on a large potential market of customers as this market continues to grow.
Google has recently announced an update to their ranking algorithm which aims to promote the latest (or “freshest”) information in the search results. They understand that many search queries, while not explicitly implying it, are usually looking for the latest up to date information. An example provided by Google is searching for the term “Olympics”, which is most likely to be querying something about the 2012 games.
Their latest algorithm update is trying to address this issue and present more fresh results where relevant. An estimated 35% of all search terms are likely to be affected by this update; meaning any fresh and new content could receive a significant boost in rankings if it is relevant and well targeted.
This obviously presents a huge opportunity for increasing traffic to your site by creating new and fresh content on a regular basis. As confirmed by Search Engine Land, one of the methods Google uses to confirm freshness is by when the page was first crawled. This suggests that one of the factors will be newly created pages and not changes to existing ones – so it’s important to create new content (pages) regularly in order to benefit.
If you do nothing, then this update is unlikely to affect you. However, you will be missing out on opportunities to receive more traffic and rank for more keywords. By creating relevant, well constructed content, you are likely to benefit from this update by seeing pages indexed quicker and ranking higher. It’s also probably safe to assume that producing fresh content more regularly will encourage Google to crawl your site more often.
Google has specified different areas which are likely to benefit from this freshness update; for example, current affairs. But, if you’re not a news site, don’t worry. There will be other areas where benefits will be seen. Take reviews of new products – if you’re looking for a review of a product, you’ll probably want a review of the latest version and not last year’s model, so this is a good area to target with fresh content.
Implementing an idea like above is simple – get a blog. Blog’s are excellent ways of creating new content and encouraging discussion. They blend well with social elements too, so this would be an effective and actionable way of providing fresh content to both site visitors and Google (contact us for one!)
Regardless of this update, adding new content to a site is a great way to improve keyword targeting and attract more visitors. Therefore, you should think about the type of content you could create that will be beneficial to your visitors (and also target keywords you want to rank for).
Some ideas include:
These are just some very brief ideas. With some creative thinking, you can easily discover many ways of creating fresh and interesting content to take advantage of this new update. If you think of any, feel free to leave a comment. ;)
To receive a bespoke, tailored solution for how your site could take advantage of the Google Freshness Algorithm update, don’t be afraid to contact us. We can provide you with a bespoke, comprehensive blog solution that will allow you to fully take advantage of this algorithm update or develop a content strategy that is right for you. Contact us today on 0800 081 1688.
Here at Spiderscope, we’ve recently been trying to improve the conversion rates for our eCommerce customers, focusing on ways to get more orders from existing traffic. We have many customers that come to us with cart systems that work, but they don’t realise that with a little polish; they could work a lot better.
There is a myriad of possibilities as to why someone may drop an order, some of which are due to external events forcing them away from the computer. In this instance, the potential customer may want to return to the site to finish their order. Therefore, a little encouragement is a good thing. However, you will never get to this if your checkout process isn’t user friendly to begin with.
For customers that we’ve helped, simply put: yes, it is. Lots of our customers have difficulty tracking their checkout processes and leave it to us to measure. Often times, the first time we do this reveals some amazing results that customers are completely unaware of. We’ve seen cart abandonment as low as 15% (of the traffic who started the checkout process) to as high as 46%, and everything in-between.
Just picture that: 46% percent of the customers who started the checkout process left before it finished.
That’s a huge number of potential orders. Again, there could be lots of reasons for this, including things like: is your cart user friendly, easy to navigate and not overwhelming your potential customers – all of which are factors. What can be done to improve this?
Improving your checkout process can be difficult. After all, if you how it all works, you can sometimes be blinded as to what is causing your visitors problems and increasing your abandonment rate.
Let’s give an example: we once had a customer that came to us after having a brand new site designed. Everything looked great, but they were failing to get orders. Traffic was high, prices were competitive, but their conversion rates were low, so they came to us asking what can be done.
Here are some of the issues we identified and fixed:
These were the most glaring flaws of their cart system, so we worked hard to upgrade their whole shopping experience. In the end, we plugged our cart system in. The result? Within days they had received more orders than they had in the last 3 months combined!
Shortly after this, we performed a review and noticed that while orders were better than ever, we were still seeing dropped orders midway through the checkout process. Determined to improve ever further, we decided to implement an automated abandoned cart email.
What’s this you ask? This is an automatic email would be sent to a visitor who had left the cart process after submitting their email address. The email would then offer the customer a chance to pick up where they left off, allowing them to quickly and easily finish their order.
You’re never going to get a 0% abandonment rate and often people will leave the checkout because something has interrupted them. This doesn’t mean they don’t want to order, just that they can’t right now. In this instance, a cart abandonment email is the perfect way to recapture this customer, and put your shop first.
This has resulted in an even more reduced abandonment rate.
Call Spiderscope on 0800 081 1688 or contact us to get a comprehensive usability review of your shopping cart and checkout process. We’ll analyse every step and optimise this to be as user friendly as possible – resulting in more orders for your store!
At the end of November, we did a post on mobile traffic trends throughout 2011 (Optimised Mobile Website – Why You Need One Now!). We clearly saw an increase of mobile traffic for some of our most popular sites throughout the year, culminating with a peek of mobile traffic in December.
Our analysis suggested that there would also be a good rise in mobile traffic in January; just after everyone got their new shiny devices for Christmas. Would it be the same for 2012? Let’s find out.
Every site that we sampled saw an increase in traffic in January 2012 compared to Jan 2011. The single biggest increase was a massive 624%; this was for a strongly Adwords driven site – which saw amazing organic growth throughout 2011 too.
Other good increases were seen from eCommerce sites, with these averaging at 302% increase in mobile traffic year on year. That’s huge! When you also consider that UK mobile shopping is predicted to top £4.5bn, can you really afford to not be in the mobile space?
In fact, mobile commerce is expected to account for 8% of all online orders in the UK in 2012.
The average mobile growth for all the customers we sampled was 333%. In Jan 2011, the sites we sampled saw exactly 5000 mobile visits. In 2012, this has risen to 15,631. Clearly, mobile traffic is growing rapidly and it’s becoming more and more important to ensure your site is optimised for this new audience.
It’s important that your site is now optimised for mobile devices. Even though today’s smart phones are more sophisticated than ever, they can still have problems rendering full sized websites.
It’s important that your website delivers an optimum mobile experience. Setting up your website to automatically detect mobile traffic and adjust accordingly is easy to do and will help your visitors. From the customers we sampled above, the lowest increase in site activity between sites which had a mobile optimised version and those without was 23%.
As pointed out above, mobile commerce is expected to account for 8% of all online orders in the UK in 2012. Also consider that many people now check prices online for items they are viewing in store; me included!
What if it was your website they landed on, but your check out was too complicated to complete on a phone? That sale could be lost.
Mobile commerce is set to explode and you don’t want to miss out. Ensuring your eCommerce site is mobile optimised, including the checkout, is extremely important going into 2012.
Contact us today to review your mobile optimisation. We can thoroughly analyse your mobile traffic and gauge how effective your site is for these visitors. We can optimise your site to display correctly on mobile devices and optimise your checkout process to deliver an optimum and consistent user experience throughout.
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