Google PLA comes to Europe


February 13, 2013

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Select European countries, including the UK, will see the arrival of Google Product Listing Ads (PLAs) from February 13th, 2013. The move will be the end to free traffic from Google shopping and search but does open up a huge opportunity for advertisers.  The introduction of PLAs will mean more granular control over product listings, bids and traffic, allowing advertisers and marketers to work out what’s going where and when, and distribute budget as necessary.

The US completed Google’s Shopping’s transition from a free to a paid PLA model back in November 2012 and, so far, it’s been a success as both a significant and profitable source of traffic.  The additional costs involved with PLAs mean advertisers must consider spend efficiency when thinking about their strategies, and this is something that the UK can look to the US to learn what has and what hasn’t worked.

Click on the video below to see what Jonathan Beeston, director, new product innovation at Adobe has to say on what marketers and advertisers can expect from Google PLAS, looking at:

·         What are PLAs?

·         How are PLAs implemented?

·         What have we seen in the US?

·         What do you need to do?

Check out Jonathan Beeston’s blog on Econsultancy for more insight and have a read of our whitepaper for new ways to enhance search marketing.

FTSE 100 what are you waiting for?

The @AdobeUK Team

January 14, 2013

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Tresilian Segal

I was surprised to read in the Financial Times (subscription required) recently that “two-thirds of companies in the FTSE 100 have websites that are difficult to use on smartphones”.  The recent study found 69 of the companies haven’t yet optimised their websites for mobiles, with many “wasting millions of pounds” on sending visitors to sites that do not meet their expectations.

Another interesting point that caught my attention in the piece was made by Sam Roddick from Deloitte Digital that if big companies don’t move quickly to adapt their websites for mobile, they risk losing business to more nimble start-ups. It’s clear that big brands can no longer ignore mobile.

But what is it that’s holding them back? We’re now in an era where the tools and technology to implement, update and optimise web presence across channels and platforms is quicker and easier than ever before.

With the start of the New Year, now is as good a time as any for big companies to take a good look at their web infrastructure and think seriously about re-platforming. Just having a website and assuming most people will view it on a PC doesn’t cut it anymore, consumers expect to be able to shop, browse, research, engage with brands via smartphones, tablets, PCs, laptops, even their TVs.  Whenever they want and wherever they are.  This experience should be tailored to each customer, depending on what device they are on.

It’s clear that companies need to look for a platform that can deliver consistent web experiences no matter the screen size, browser or operating system and that can be managed centrally so updates can be made quickly.  Crucially they should also look for one that can examine and feedback on how customers are engaging so that web strategies can be refined according to where successes are achieved.

At Adobe, we’ve been working hard to address these needs and have developed tools which meet the dynamic needs of marketers today.  Using Adobe Experience Manager, marketers can create, manage, and optimise customer experiences to build brand, drive demand and extend reach into the digital world.

Specialist bank and asset manager Investec invested in web content management tool Adobe Experience Manager to help it manage global website content. The impact has been striking: since going live Investec has more than doubled its online traffic, vastly increased the volume of both global and local content published, and laid the foundation for multichannel communication, notably mobile. Externally – Investec saw a 130% increase in website traffic, as the new service increased website reliability for all the countries with quick load times, ensuring a seamless customer experience across all platforms and devices, be that an iPad, smartphone or laptop, to ultimately fit in with their core customer’s dynamic lifestyles.  Now wherever Investec’s clients go, and wherever its business takes it, it is able to deliver a rich mobile experience that meets its highly valued client expectations.

In 2012 Ofcom reported that 39% of people in the UK use their mobiles to access the internet, this is clearly a big opportunity for brands and one that Carphone Warehouse was quick to take advantage of.  The UK retailer of mobile phones and other consumer technology products used data to change its mobile strategy after research revealed that 23% of internet visitors were accessing websites through mobile channels, and that 22% of all retail purchases were browsed on a smartphone prior to purchase. Seeing this channel as key to its online marketplace, it decided to prioritise its mobile experience.  Using solutions from Adobe Marketing Cloud, Carphone Warehouse developed a tailored mobile experience and using the analytics function were also then able to gain deeper insights into its mobile audiences to further refine its mobile strategy and marketing programmes.

Based on these examples – my question to those 69 FTSE 100 companies is, what are they waiting for?

Tresilian Segal, Head of Marketing, Northern Europe

Digital Marketing Business Unit, Adobe

Mobile search will continue to sharply rise into 2013

The @AdobeUK Team

December 21, 2012

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2012 will be remembered in the marketing world as the year that digital marketers finally got around to writing the rule book on mobile.  Whilst the move was visibly in an effort to better adapt to the huge shift in con­sumer behaviour, it’s clear that there is still room for improvement.

At the start of the year in Adobe’s Q2 2012 Global Digital Advertising Update, we predicted  that one in five paid search clicks would come from a mobile device and whilst this seemed ambitious, we have surpassed that mark. However on the other side of the coin – many brands still don’t have fully optimised websites or apps for mobile.

So what should digital marketers look out for next year?

Gartner predicts the sale of smart devices to rise by as much as 1.2 billion in 2013 and we think mobile search will continue to grow as a significant portion of SEM campaigns. By the end of 2013, we think one in three paid clicks will come from a tablet or smartphone, with consumers increasingly making purchasing decisions solely with their mobile devices. With this shift marketers need to recognise that a mobile strategy is not optional. Finding ways to monetise and personalise mobile traffic through apps, publishing and optimised web experiences are critical to success.

As well as mobile, we are expecting to see a combination of trends and new technology innovations cause 2013 to be an eventful year for digital marketing. See more on the following 2013 predictions from Adobe on ad exchanger:

–          Cross-channel and cross-device measurement will become paramount

–          Marketing will become even more granular

–          Marketers will understand the true value of Social

Jonathan Beeston, director, new product innovation at Adobe

Catch the window before it shuts

The @AdobeUK Team

October 12, 2012

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Despite the shaky UK economy, brands are continuing to invest billions into digital advertising – both online and through mobile devices.

This is one of the findings from the latest advertising expenditure report from the Internet Advertising Bureau (IAB); with advertising spend shooting up by 12.6 percent to £2.6 billion in the first half of the year.

Fuelled by the rocketing number of smartphone and tablet users, mobile advertising alone grew by 132 percent to £181.5 million in the first half of 2012, from the previous year, and now accounts for seven percent of all digital advertising spend.

These results support the findings of Adobe’s Q2 2012 Global Digital Advertising Update, which we blogged about back in July.   Our report showed that whilst conversion rates for tablets are 120 percent higher than those for PCs, Cost Per Clicks (CPC) rates are markedly less than desktops or laptops, 30 percent less in fact – opening a window of opportunity in the digital advertising market.

“Mobile traffic continues to demonstrate a significant opportunity for advertisers as the industry is still yet to normalise click through rates” comments Jonathan Beeston, director of new product innovation at Adobe. “With results remaining strong for mobile, there is a growing emphasis on mobile devices as tablet conversion rates outshine desktop conversion rates.”

However, the gap in that window of opportunity is starting to close and it won’t be long until the cost per click rate starts to increase. To make the most of this, brands need to act now to make sure they don’t get shut out by their competitors.

“There’s still time for brands to get in there and reap the benefits delivering greater ROI but they need to move quickly before this ever shrinking window shuts,” adds Beeston.

Retail Marketers – Time to Bring Your Customers Back

The @AdobeUK Team

September 12, 2012

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Findings from our latest Digital Index Report, The ROI from Marketing to Existing Online Customers, show that it takes seven first-time online shoppers to deliver the same revenue per visit as just one repeat purchaser.

Existing customers provide greater ROI for retailers. So, why are the bulk (80%) of interactive marketing budgets spent on trying to attract new shoppers?  Surely the number one priority should be existing customers?

The financial rewards for marketing to return and repeat customers are significant.  It is estimated that for every 1% of shoppers who return for another visit, overall revenue will increase by 10%.  The impact of this is obvious and incredible.  Based on the sample used for our study, in both Europe and the US, on average, 40% of revenue comes from returning or repeat customers, who represent only 8% of all visitors.

This is magnified even further during Christmas, with the increase from repeat purchasers being a massive 23% – nearly 500% higher!

As well as Christmas, repeat purchasers also deliver greater returns during slow economic growth.  With the Eurozone issues over the past few years, where overall GPD growth in Europe has been either weak or negative, repeat purchasers have become even more important to the bottom line.

So how can your brand benefit from this information and turn shoppers into return and repeat purchasers?

1.     Firstly, conversion rates need to be considered as this is the main driver for higher return per visit.  The conversion rate for first time shoppers is just 1%, whereas for returning and repeat customers it’s five and nine times as much, respectively.  Marketers need to optimise site conversion rates across the board to bring customers back to the site.

2.     Secondly, you need to look at better targeting customers; personalisation is key! Companies that personalise the experience increase the likelihood of both sales and recommendations.  A pretty obvious statement, but many marketers are not taking advantage of all the customer data they have on existing customers, that makes personalisation possible.

3.     Lastly, offering rewards, loyalty programme promotions and using tactics such as email and display ad retargeting, are all great ways to encourage return visits and bring those sales figures up.

If you’re going to give one piece of advice to your colleagues across the marketing department as you gear up for Christmas, make sure you prioritise the present list according to ROI.

For a more detailed look at how Europe compares against the US, click on our infographic below and see a copy of the full Digital Index Report here.

Jamie Brighton, Product Marketing Manager, Digital Marketing Business, Adobe



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