Digital Marketing Trends from January 2016: Twitter for Retail, Sexism in Marketing and a New Google Update

2016 is here and we’ve already seen some interesting updates within the digital marketing industry. We’ve read new insights into how we, as Brits, shop on our mobiles, how Twitter is being used (or not used) by retailers and of course, a digital update blog wouldn’t be complete without a sudden Google algorithm change.

The UK is named as the nation most likely to shop on a mobile device.

It seems that every few months we read a new statistic about how important mobile is for businesses who want to reach their audience online. It seems that 2016 is going to be no exception - with a new study naming the United Kingdom as the nation most likely to make purchases using their mobile phone.

Mobile Shopping

56% of UK residents made a mobile purchase within the last month.

More than half of Brits had used their mobile to shop online within the last month - a statistic that we think retailers should really pay attention to. Having a mobile-friendly website is now more important than ever if you don’t want to miss out on more than half of the population.

Of those surveyed, 50% of those from the US had made a mobile purchase within the last month - a very similar figure to us here in the UK. Meanwhile, there were only 46% of Australians and 36% in some other European nations who had done the same.

If you want to read more about this study, we recommend reading eConsultancy’s stats post from last week.

Our key takeaway, quite expectedly, is to make sure that your website is mobile-friendly.

Google’s new algorithm update may affect your content

In early January, Google released some new information to The SEM Post about their latest algorithm update to ‘Panda’. If you were unaware, ‘Panda’ is the name that they attribute to the set of algorithm changes that work to increase the ranking of websites which have useful, high quality content.

Now there wasn’t anything major in this particular update but it is worth noting that it may mean that you see a slight decrease in your website traffic for pages that do not have good content.

As Google rankings are becoming increasingly competitive, it’s important to make sure that your website’s copy is useful, well-written and that it answers any questions that your reader may have - from your ‘About Us’ page down to each individual product description.

It’s quite common for business owners to rush the content element when they create a new website and, as a result, the copy is usually quite low quality and what Google considers to be ‘thin’. Thin content provides very little use to the reader, is often unoriginal or uninformative - definitely something you want to avoid if you’re dedicated to increasing your Google ranking.

If your website has seen a hit and you’re interesting in finding out more about the new algorithm change, Moz has published an in-depth analysis on what you or may or may not need to do.

Our key takeaway is to make sure that you review your website’s copy and expand on any thin content.

Is Twitter effective for retailers?

It seems that an increasing number of retailers are not seeing significant return on investment from Twitter - and it’s an issue that’s worth discussing if you’re a retailer.

Whilst the visual platforms of Facebook and Instagram are perfect for retailers - Twitter hasn’t seemed to impress as much.

Over the past few years, we have seen significant developments in social media sites such as Facebook, Instagram and Snapchat, but developments on Twitter seem to have been restricted.

Starbucks Facebook

So what exactly are the issues that retailers are finding?

  • Twitter is not as visual as other platforms.
  • There is a very limited word count which only rarely provides room for (restricted) creativity.
  • Advertising on the platform can be costly compared to Facebook.
  • The news feed is, on the most part, chronological which means that a lot of tweets aren’t seen by the majority of followers.

At Statement we do feel that those issues are valid - but this doesn’t mean that Twitter is useless for retailers.

First of all, an ongoing presence on the top social media platforms is necessary for brand awareness and so that customers know that you’re alive and accessible.

But Twitter can also be used as a very beneficial customer service tool. If a customer has a problem, they don’t need to go find a contact form somewhere hidden on your website, they can simply send you a quick tweet. We’re seeing that the customer journey is very important this year and having a strong customer service activity on Twitter is one way you can ensure that your customers are having a positive interaction with your brand.

Twitter is also good for influencer marketing - reaching out to popular accounts who may have an affinity with your brand and collaborating with them on an endorsement, competition or piece of content. Getting the right person with the right audience to send the right tweet can really give a boost to the return on investment you get from Twitter.

Digiday has published a useful piece of content on this issue that we think is definitely worth a read.

Our key takeaway is to make sure that you use Twitter as more than a promotional tool and begin to integrate it into your customer service and influencer marketing.

#WomenNotObjects ad campaign, lead by agency exec, is sparking positive conversations

Throughout the history of marketing, sex has been thought to have ‘sold’. And as a result of this, women have often been sexualised and exploited for the sole purpose of increasing the number of video views, link clicks or product purchases.

However, Madonna Badger, an agency exec, has launched a new campaign with the hashtag #WomenNotObjects to raise awareness of how much of an issue this is.

The advert quite controversially takes infamous ad campaigns known for their exploitation of women or their bodies and takes the women who appeared in them to talk about the ad they were in.

It’s definitely worth a watch- especially as there’ve been many positive conversations over the past few years about equality in business and the need for feminism in marketing campaigns.

Our key takeaway, or shall we say Madonna Badger’s key takeaway, is to always be conscious about issues such as feminism when creating a new ad campaign.

Talk to us

If you have any thoughts about anything in this blog post, please don’t hesitate to start a conversation with us on Twitter at  @Statement - we’d love to have a chat!

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