All posts by Dave Chaffey

Dave is editor of many of the 7 Step to Success guides on Smart Insights. He is a bestselling author, consultant and speaker who enjoys sharing tips, tools and techniques on all things digital, but especially those most influential in driving awareness, leads and sales. That's SEO, PPC, Social Media, Email Marketing, Site Design and Analytics! You can connect with Dave through any of these social networks to receive his latest insights or to ask a question: LinkedIn - Google+ - Twitter - Facebook. Dave is author of 5 bestselling books on digital marketing including Emarketing Excellence and Digital Marketing: Strategy, Implementation and Practice. In 2004 he was recognised by the Chartered Institute of Marketing as one of 50 marketing ‘gurus’ worldwide who have helped shape the future of marketing.

30 cutting-edge digital marketing tools and techniques to help grow your business

It’s my favourite time of blogging year, where we look ahead to what will be the major trends in digital marketing in the year ahead. I find there’s a real thirst for knowledge amongst marketers about the latest trends in digital marketing and Ienjoy reviewing the latest marketing techniques and technologies. For the past few years I have given my recommendations on the trends as I see them, based on reviewing innovation in marketing technology through the year, plus crowdsourcing what Smart Insights readers see as important for them. In deciding on the most relevant trends for marketers I don’t just look at what’s “Hot” or “Cool”, but instead I focus on what make the biggest difference to marketers, from a commercial sense, since most of us are working in marketing to get better results for our companies or our…

Digital Impact Conference 2014, Wednesday 17th September 2014, Central London

We're in the final countdown to our first conference in London and looking forward to meeting everyone who has booked. Thank you if you have registered! The final confirmed programme is below. We have just 8 tickets remaining, so it will be a "full house". If you haven't registered, but are now able to attend, then we would, of course, like to welcome you - please register via Eventbrite which has details on discounts for Smart Insights members that are still available. Here is the final, confirmed programme for the day. You can also download a PDF of the programme here Smart Insights Digital Impact Final Conference Programme.

Finding the venue

Of course, you know how to use Google Maps, but we have found that the venue needs careful navigation to…

Compare your traffic sources and mobile vs desktop audience split to others in your sector to make the business case for investment in digital marketing

Value: [rating=3] Recommended link: Google Analytics Benchmarking announcement Do you remember Google Analytics Benchmarking? You’ll need quite a good memory since Google withdrew it in late 2011 I recall - we lamented its passing in this post on using Google Analytics to Benchmark engagement with a site recommending how to use measures like bounce rate, pages per visit and visit duration to compare engagement with your site. Well, now it’s back with a bang including a new interface and new types of reports. Here’s how to check it out:

How do I set up Benchmarking?

This is easy and you may well have it set up before. Head to Admin and check the second box shown. Data is shared anonymously,…

What are the marketing opportunities, implications and actions for brands, businesses and marketers?

Tech watchers have become used to the regular September announcements from Apple. After a couple of years without major updates to the product line we were expecting a genuinely new Apple product and it’s here in the shape of the Apple Watch. Of course, Apple announcements are huge news across mainstream and tech channels, so what can be said that hasn’t already be said!? So I’ll keep our alert brief focusing on the names, timelines and marketing implications for businesses and brand. There were hours of announcements across the Apple Live event, but there are 3 main releases to be aware of.

1. Apple Watch

Release date: Early 2015 Cost: $349 (£216) Resolution: Not disclosed! Battery life: Hours not days! You will have heard that the Apple Watch will be touch screen, feature Siri voice interactions…

Evaluating technology options for innovation in marketing - do you know your hype cycles?

If you're involved in marketing strategy development, you will be constantly making judgements and doubtless arguing with colleagues about which digital technology innovations are most relevant to  your organisation.  In this post we share some examples of Gartner's well established Hype Cycle tools which serve to highlight the adoption of new technology tools within the marketplace. You'll see we have updated the post for different years, so you can see how technology trends have changed.

The Gartner Hype Cycle model for technology innovation

You may well know the Gartner Technology Hype cycle since this has been published for over 10 years, over time they have added a comprehensive range of hype cycles covering technology applications like Ecommerce, CRM and ERP. Many of these are only available to subscribers, but Gartner do share some of the broader hype cycles through…

Our alerts and advice on the "must-know" developments in digital marketing

In August our two most significant alerts were about changes to the Facebook and Google algorithm - check these out in the sections on search and social media marketing below. Now we’re into September we’re into the final build-up to our Digital Impact conference which is in central London on the 17th September. We’re looking forward to meeting members at the event where we'll show how to make a bigger impact with your digital marketing with in-depth case studies and workshops covering all the digital marketing techniques we cover in our monthly updates, that’s Digital Transformation, SEO, AdWords, Content, Social and Email marketing plus improving desktop and mobile experiences using CRO and analytics.

Strategy and planning

What influences purchase of your product or service? - Our new infographic showing how your marketing communications should match your customer’s…

The top 10 free sources for UK, European, US, Asian and Global digital marketing statistics

Online marketers love statistics about digital marketing. They allow us to review customer adoption of the latest digital platforms, make business cases for investment in marketing and allow us to benchmark our performance against competitors. For Expert members, we compile a regularly updated set of usage statistics to use in presentations. Recommended Guide: Online usage statistics compilation Our "one stop" download includes the latest stats to include in presentations to make the case for digital investment. Download our Online marketing statistics compilation.   If you're compiling your own stats, which are the best, most reliable free and paid sources? Everyone has their favourites, but I thought it would be useful to…

Just head to when signed-in

Importance: [rating=4] Recommended link: Twitter Analytics Previously Twitter's analytics service has been limited to advertisers, but that changed this week with an announcement via Twitter:

Absolutely thrilled to open up access to to EVERYONE. Check it out, and let us know what you think!

— Ian Chan (@chanian) August 27, 2014

How to access Twitter analytics?

Just as it says in the title to this article, if you're already signed into Twitter in your browser, if you go to There is no registration process, but a little bizarrely, you just have to access the dashboard URL and you should then see updates. Until then you will just see a blank dashboard: For more information on what you can see in Twitter's analytics see this post from Twitter introducing the Twitter Analytics dashboard. Enjoy! This is…

Google’s use of “rel=author” markup to stop but Google+ posts to continue featuring in search results

Importance: [rating=4] Recommended link: Google announcement of end of Authorship

Summary of the change

John Mueller of Google Webmaster Tools announced in a personal Google+ post on 28th August that Google will now stop showing authorship results in Google Search, and will no longer be tracking data from content using rel=author markup. From a Google user point of view this means you will no longer see author images in pictures like this one from a briefing written by Chris Soames in 2012: In fact, you may have noticed from around a month ago that Google removed the author images. In this new announcement they are taking the next step and removing the author information too. We’re also alerting you to this since more significantly from an SEO point of view Google has said that they are no…

“Close variant” keyword matching to become default by end September can increase clicks by 7% on average

Importance: [rating=4] (If you’re not already using this feature) Recommended link: AdWords official announcement

Context for the change to match types

The Match types advertisers use in AdWords are important since they control whether relevant ads are displayed to searchers based on the keywords they type. This in turn affects the clickthrough rates, Quality Score and the ROI you get on your campaigns. Here’s a reminder of the main match types from iProspect:

What is the change?

In their announcement, Google explain that starting in late September, they’re applying close variant keyword matching to all exact and phrase match keywords. Previously it was possible to opt-out of these. Close keyword variations include Close variations include misspellings, singular and plural forms, acronyms, stemmings (such as floor…

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  • FREE digital marketing plan templates
  • FREE alerts on the latest developments
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