Short ethnography studies can help to create personas and improve your website user experience and usability

Anyone who reads my Smart Insights blog posts will probably know by now that I try to achieve two things: Show marketers that research isn't too difficult, time-consuming or expensive (ok that's actually three things there) Show marketers the benefit of research and why it's worth the effort The next method I want to talk to you about is a particularly time-consuming type of research: ethnography, which are long-term observational type studies, however, I also believe that a simple short-term ethnography study can also yield fantastic benefits for user research and building personas. Ethnography doesn't need to be time-consuming and there are ways of using this research method on a short-term basis to help increase your conversions and focus your marketing by helping you to understand your audience.

[si_guide_block id="83545" title="Access our Persona Research Guide" description="This guide…

The must-knows if you want to create a multi-vendor website

E-commerce marketers who dedicate boundless effort to their businesses aren’t new to being told that “technology” is the best way to make their business work. And as with all good harvests, the yield from the newest of technologies depends on how well you pair them up with your business. Things are not much different for multi-vendor e-commerce websites. In the recent past, these websites have captured both the stage and the spotlight. With the passage of time, and with technology spilling over into every available space on the web, multi-vendor e-commerce websites have become the norm and the way forward. Given the intrinsically global nature of the trending e-commerce initiatives, it is vital to plant your business into a stable marketing matrix. Treat this article more like a preach piece on how to create a Multi-vendor e-commerce website from scratch. Follow the tips catalogued…

A three-step approach to check for paid search campaign mistakes

In an ideal world, enterprising entrepreneurs would only need to set up shop, open their virtual doors, and find customers lining up to buy their products. Of course, it’s never that easy. Digital marketers have to actually go out looking for them. And once you find them, you need to convert them. While conversion methods vary, many digital marketers arrive on a seemingly perfect solution when looking to invest to boost their visits: pay-per-click campaigns. PPC campaigns can work, and some work quite well. But they can be minefields for mistakes, and the most common is the marketing equivalent of 'keeping up with the Joneses.' Many digital marketers think they should run a PPC campaign because everyone else is doing it. [si_guide_block id="79626" title="Download FREE Resource – 10 costly AdWords…

Two major trends in email must not be ignored: interactive email and automation.

For certain messages, an old-fashioned email with a plain-text, well-written letter and a call-to-action at the bottom just might do the trick. But unless you want to take the risk of branding your entire online presence as “retro,” to be competitive, you must use the latest email technology.

What is Interactive Email?

To create an interactive email, a developer uses HTML and CSS to create radio buttons, forms, live counters, tabs and other interactive elements typically used on web pages. These interactive emails are now being dubbed “mailable microsites,” and the name fits perfectly. These emails act just like a micro website where users can move from “page to page” using tab and radio buttons to traverse the content and even convert directly within the email. These mailable microsites are being created using techniques such as punched card coding which effectively…

Web forms are a crucial communication channel between your organization and your audience - so making sure they deliver a first-class User Experience (UX) is imperative.

Turning a one-way flow of information into a two-way dialogue with your users, web forms can play a key role in facilitating the completion of tasks that are more often than not inextricably tied to the success of your organization. This may be an online purchase for those in the e-commerce sector, an application for membership of a particular institution or service, or a request for information for those operating in B2B industries. [si_guide_block id="5686" title="Download Premium Resource – Improving Results from your website: 7 steps guide" description="Use a structured review to increase leads, sales and satisfaction from your site."/] However, audiences today are fickle, and many users will be unlikely to persevere with a form that’s unclear and difficult to use, no matter how much they…

Three ways that marketers can benefit from working with Spotify

When marketers talk about ‘content’ one often thinks of words, images, video, or a combination of all three, such as infographics or interactive visuals. However, in recent years there has been a surge of interest in audio, from the growing popularity in podcasting to the emergence of smart devices. The growth of music streaming, in particular, has been a dominant trend across the globe, radically changing people’s relationship and consumption patterns with music.  These changes have revealed many interesting insights and have opened up new opportunities for marketers to reach new and existing consumers within an audio environment. [si_guide_block id="5676" title="Download FREE Resource – Digital marketing plan template" description="Our popular marketing planning template built on the Smart Insights RACE planning system."/]

Spotify and the emergence of audio platforms

Spotify, Apple…

Have you tried using webinars yet? What tools are you using to host and promote your webinars?

Do you want to learn more about what it takes to plan and promote an effective webinar? Smart Insights have kindly asked me to put together a Quick Win for their website – and it’s all about webinars, from how to set goals for webinars to finding ideas and topics and to promoting your webinar. If you’re interested in learning more about how webinars can help you improve results for your business, make sure you check it out!

[si_quick_block id="111353" title="How to plan and promote a high-converting webinar" description="This guide will show you how to effectively plan and promote your webinar. You will also learn about the different types of webinars and how to choose the best type for your business objectives."]

It covers literally every aspect of planning and promoting webinars so that once you’ve…

Webinars are great for generating quality leads, building trust with an audience, reaching more people, and converting more leads into customers

In an increasingly competitive market where consumers get hit with content from all sides, webinars allow you to offer them more value than other, more traditional forms of online content (blog posts, infographics, etc.). According to research from the Content Marketing Institute, 43% of B2B marketers use webinar platforms and 55% use webinars as a key content distribution vehicle. Ascend2, meanwhile, has found that webinars are the second most effective type of gated content resource for lead capture purposes, trumped only by download offers and Demand Gen Report has found that along with research reports and emails, webinars are the most effective tactics for lead nurture.

[si_quick_block id="111353" title="How to plan and promote a high-converting webinar" description="This…

4 strategies to help your agency expand abroad

As recently reported by The New York Times, the world market has finally escaped the throes of the economic crisis, as we now see every major economy enjoying simultaneous growth. While the reasons for this growth are manifold and far-reaching, one thing is clear: Businesses finding success at home in the United States are beginning to view the idea of opening offices abroad as a more viable opportunity. It’s not hard to see why. There are 28 countries and 500 million consumers in the European Union alone. To say opportunity exists in Europe is an understatement. But once you get to the EU, you need to have access to all those countries. Achieving this requires a carefully planned strategy.

[si_guide_block id="67467" title="Download Premium Resource – Running successful international marketing campaigns guide" description="A practical guide for running and structuring International Marketing…

10 simple test ideas for your B2B website, to increase conversions and improve the user experience, through user testing

User testing is the process of testing elements of a website to improve conversion, sales and revenues, as well as overall improving the user experience which brings for mentioned benefits. Being familiar with user testing is only half the battle, what do you test to make changes to improve the user experience for your customers?

Introduction to user testing

[si_quick_block id="111363" title="How to do Website User Testing to increase conversions" description="Explore reasons to do user testing, how to create a hypothesis for a test, and how to pitch user testing to your manager. We will also cover practical steps on how to write test scripts, how to carry out user testing, how to analyse results and how to interpret those results to make change happen."/]

In our new Quick Win - 10 things you…

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