Archive | November 2013

Will you be shopping small this Saturday, Nov 30th?

shop small and local

We here at InSequent believe strongly that supporting local businesses is vital to our communities and the economy.

small business saturdayWe want to encourage everyone to get out this Saturday, November 30th and show your support for your local small businesses. It doesn’t matter if it’s a java from the corner coffee shop, books from the little used book store, or holiday supplies at the general store, every dollar spent helps!

Wondering how you can get involved?

small business saturday

Are you a local business owner and wondering how you can promote your business? There are free tools, support, and inspiration available at ShopSmall.com.

Tell us, where will you be shopping small this Saturday?

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Last Minute Black Friday Tactics

I read an awesome article by Vocus containing great information on last minute tactics for Black Friday that I wanted to share with you. black friday deals

Consumers spent $59.1 billion on Black Friday last year. With so much revenue up for grabs, marketers need to optimize to capitalize on the biggest shopping day of the year.

While it’s too late to plan a lengthy campaign leading up to Black Friday (and the following Cyber Monday), you can still boost traffic and sales with some effective short-term marketing tactics. Here are three to consider:

Social Media Outreach

Although many companies will wind down next week, you need to stay active on social media channels. Post product photos and videos to Facebook and interact with customers over Twitter and Instagram. Consumers will be looking at their social media accounts as they research products and shop online. In fact, 66 percent of 2011 Black Friday purchases were the result of a social media interaction.

“Free Shipping Friday”

Offer free shipping on purchases over a fixed spending threshold. Companies that do this see large revenue increases over the holidays. In 2012, for example, consumers spent an average of 42 percent more on transactions which included free shipping. Consider also offering free return shipping: the cost of returning goods is a major deterrent for online shoppers.

Although it’s just a week away, ramping up your marketing now can have a significant effect on your Black Friday and Cyber Monday revenue.

Email + Coupon

Include coupon or discount codes in your email campaigns to subscribers. People are in ‘deal-hunting’ mode during the holiday season and can be more receptive to special offers received at this time. A 2011 survey showed that 32 percent of consumers keep track of the email coupons they receive from retailers.

For more information on how to send email or coupon campaigns from your InSequent account, please email us at corporate@insequent.com and we’ll be happy to help you! If you don’t already have an InSequent account, please visit www.insequent.com for information on starting your own mobile website.

Long-tail SEO for Beginners

long tail keywordsThe “long-tail” concept was first used in market terms. Other concepts like mass market, niche market, Pareto’s law etc. also pop into mind when it comes to talking about long tail in business. But what exactly is long-tail SEO?

Long-tail User

A long-tail user is anyone who looks for a pair of “shoes Nike shox 5” on Google. They could be your kids when they’re looking for “iPad 4 music dj apps.” They could be your friend who is looking for “low calorie tasty recipes.”

Long-tail users are users who know what they want and it shows in their search. Generally speaking, they are young with several years of Internet experience. They not only see email, chat, social networking and all the information available on the Internet as part of daily life, but also find the Internet (and increasingly more so for such users) to be a great tool for shopping.

The Internet allows them to compare products and services, prices and promotions. It gives them all they need to make their decision without having to leave home. What’s more, they see how shopping, sales, delivery and after sales services have evolved considerably thanks to the Internet. It is something the long-tail user has detected and this detection equals trust.

Long-tail SEO

The point of long-tail SEO is to capture all those users who perform searches using 3, 4, 5, 6, 7 keywords or more. The most cost-effective, fast and effective way to do this is through landing pages that have been optimized in terms of code and content to position them among the first results in search engines.

Using long-tail SEO can boost visits from search engines by up to 80%. So, the more pages optimized specifically for each of your products or services, the greater the positions they occupy in the search engine results, thus achieving greater numbers of visits, encouraging users to spend more time on your site, increasing the conversion rate and decreasing the bounce rate.

The Business of Long-tail SEO

The idea behind long-tail SEO business is to achieve higher results with lower investment. It is a tailored strategy that uses resources effectively. Much of that effectiveness lies in its ability to identify users with the greatest potential as customers through their Internet searches.

What is really useful and effective about long-tail SEO is that it can capture the different user trends shown on the Internet. This becomes a major asset for any Internet business because it does not require large investments and the results can be seen in the short term.

For more information on InSequent and mobile websites, please visit http://www.insequent.com.

Small Business Saturday is November 30th!

small business saturday

First there was Black Friday, then Cyber Monday. November 27, 2010 was the first ever Small Business Saturday. Small Business Saturday is the day we celebrate the Shop Small movement to drive shoppers to local merchants across the U.S.

More than 200 organizations have already joined American Express OPEN, the company’s small business unit, in declaring the Saturday after Thanksgiving as Small Business Saturday. For more info: http://www.smallbusinesssaturday.com/.

Please support your local small businesses and make a difference!

For more information on InSequent, please visit www.insequent.com.

Local SEO, Digital Churn and Setting Proper SMB Expectations

Over at Search Engine Land last week I wrote about a SIM Partners report showing how specific local SEO tactics greatly improved local 

Pin

rankings on Google. The report laid out roughly six tactics and said that after implementing these practices rankings were vastly improved:

After optimization, targeted combinations indexed in the top seven positions on the SERP increased 179%; top two positions increased 399%; third through fifth positions increased 97%; and targeted combinations not indexed in the top seven positions decreased 62% (from 74% of all targeted combinations to just 28%).

Near the bottom of the report it also said the following about the time frame in which these results were achieved: “The time frame between the pre- and post- studies for each case study was between 6 and 9 months.”

While the study involved listings and local results for national-local businesses, the tactics and techniques should be equally applicable to SMBs (except they can’t do it themselves). What reading this report did was remind me of something about SMBs, digital advertising and churn — proper expectation setting.

Digital product churn remains very high among virtually all of the SMB sales channels (whether traditional or digital only). There are a variety of persistent causes: competition among providers, fulfillment issues and SMB confusion. Related to the last point, some component of SMB advertiser churn is has to do with a lack of proper expectations and/or ROI confusion.

Over the course of the past several years many channels have learned to bundle products for SMBs or to create contracts with minimum terms, such as six months.

I followed up with SIM Partners to ask about what they say regarding performance and how long it will take. The firm doesn’t tell clients that it will take six months but they do try and manage expectations.

Most SMBs don’t look at analytics dashboards or have a sophisticated understanding of ROI. According to our data only about 10% (if that) of SMBs look at dashboards. Instead they rely on more “visible” or “intuitive” ROI measures.

What’s your advice regarding what SMBs should be told to set appropriate SEO and other digital marketing expectations? Do you think they should be tied to contracts for a minimum term? What are the right metrics to show them regarding performance?

About the author: Greg Sterling is the founding principal of Sterling Market Intelligence (SMI), a consulting and research firm focused on the Internet’s influence on offline consumer purchase behavior.

For more information about InSequent, please visit http://www.insequent.com.

Friday Funny!

mobile phone comic humor

Here’s to starting the weekend with a little humor!

For more information on mobile websites and all things mobile marketing, please visit InSequent’s website at http://www.insequent.com

Importance of SEO and Search

Now that you’ve considered the importance of having a mobile website, it’s time to look at why SEO and search are an integral part of your mobile business.

seoSearch Engine Optimization (SEO)

  • 70-80% of users focus on organic results
  • 75% of users never scroll past the first page of search results
  • Search and email are the top two internet activities
  • Search is the #1 driver of traffic to content sites, beating social media by more than 300%
  • SEO leads have a 14.6% close rate, while outbound leads (such as direct mail or print advertising) have a 1.7% close rate
Search
  • Google owns 65-70% of the search engine market share
  • 93% of online experiences begin with a search engine
  • Over 39% of customers come from search

For more information on mobile websites, SEO and search, please visit InSequent’s website at http://www.insequent.com

Sources: Search Engine Journal, Outbrain, MarketingCharts