Google Shopping Insights: Smart Way to Know What Your Customers Want

Google Shopping Insights: Smart Way to Know What Your Customers Want

Released at WSJDLive, October 20, 2015, Google launched an exceptional tool called Shopping Insights in beta phase. The tool is meant to show retailers and other businesses statistical data about what and how much customers are searching for a specific product in their cities. Google Shopping Insights is helpful in showing the top searched and trending products on the city level for a particular month.

So What Exactly is Google Shopping Insights

Google Shopping Insights, is a service aimed to help retailers understand the way consumers shop for different products via Google. Introduced 2 years back, the feature was first made available in the beta version with next significant update in November 2016. It gives you an edge over exploring details about specific products trending on Google.com, their trend track record, comparative analysis based on regions, and much more.

Using the feature, retailers can get to know how customers shop for products using their devices and PCs on Google. At present, the majority of people search online, still, most of them buy products from physical stores. What makes Shopping Insights interesting for retailers is the way it shows them consumers’ preferences and mindshare for different products on the basis of the city, state, or country.

Google Shopping Insights Vs AdWords Keyword Planner

Well, of course, there is already the AdWords Keyword Planner which helps you find current search trends and new keywords, but Shopping Insights goes one step further from finding out the latest trends only…it offers the capability to understand consumer’s shopping trends in detail on a city-by-city level with a lot more useful features. Also, it is more of a decision-making tool to adjust your strategy than a concrete AdWords helper.

Main features of Shopping Insights

As already said above, Google Shopping Insights is meant to serve retailers with proper information on the trending and popular products searched and bought by customers using Google as the medium.

Main features of Google Shopping Insights

There are three main categories:

Featured Stories

It shows the featured stories about different niche and products, services, etc on the basis of their popularity and search.

Top Products

This category deals with the top 10 searched products on Google. The tool ranks products which have the highest query volume for a specific month. The top products are decided as the top 10 products with the highest search volumes for a certain month. This list is then displayed in descending order.

Trending Products 

This is where comparative analysis is offered. Trending products are calculated with a comparison of search volumes for the particular month against the previous month. This category shows 5 top and the least trending products in a somewhat graphical way to show their performance over the month in consideration. It also shows the estimated growth or downfall in the popularity or demand of that specific product over that month and is sorted according to the highest volume of change.

Other than these visible features, the tool has much more interesting stuff hiding under its hood. Here’s the roundup:

Google Shopping Insights - Trending Products

Heat Map

This indicates a product’s popularity in a particular time period throughout different regions. The darker shades on the map mean higher consumer interest in that item(s). One thing to note here is that the data displayed on these heat maps is relative to a specific city with the highest level of interest (max 100). When you zoom, you will be able to view info on a micro level for all the listed cities, states, and regions. You can zoom until each city becomes a visible circle. When you hover on a circle, it will display you the interest level in that city as compared to the city with the highest interest.

Data Filter 

If you’d like, you can even filter the data on the basis of a device. This will let you compare and analyze the interest ratio on smartphones against laptops or desktops. What’s more, you can additionally compare multiple products. The entire data is normalized in comparison to the highest point for the specific chart in a review.

Time Series Graph 

You can also view the time series graph to get an idea of consumer’s interest in an item over particular time periods. This data is shown in form of percentage with the highest point on the graph as 100 (as already said).

How Google Shopping Insights Work

  • Using Shopping Insights is quite easy. Google provides data input to Insights tool on the basis of search queries made by users/customers through Google.com as well as Google.com/shopping.
  • The data collected is then aggregated, emphasizing on a specific product on the basis of queries (extensive samples of searches for that particular item).
  • At the same time, it factors the overall probability of people searching for the same item using different keywords or phrases.

The current version of Shopping Insights lets you conduct the search based on their name or brand name. One thing to note here is that the search giant is more concerned about customers’ interest levels in the specific products rather than the keywords. Hence, a single keyword is used to represent every product or brand name.

The tool is all centered around retailers having physical stores as stats show that most of the goods are purchased offline (from the stores). This can help retailers understand the taste and preferences of customers trending for that particular month on the city level.

Use from Retailer’s’ Perspective

So you must be thinking now how exactly is this new tool important for business owners. Right? Well, it’s more like Google Trends for retailers. The data offered by Shopping Insights serves businesses with the ability to overview and understand consumers’ shopping patterns and trends in specific locales. Using this info-rich statistical data, they can better analyze and generate suitable models, strategies, and campaign concepts keeping in mind their target audience.

To sum it up, Google Shopping Insights is a great way to understand the local shopping trends of customers and performance of specific products over local or other regions (as offered by Google).

Let’s Take an Example

Situation I: Without Shopping Insights

  • Suppose you have a shoe retailing business in a City A and B, selling shoes of different brands like Adidas, Puma, Reebok, and more.
  • You have been selling your stuff like always and don’t have any idea on what the target audience is actually after.
  • Your sale for the month of June:
  • City A – 240 pairs of shoe
  • City B  – 412 pairs

google insight

  • You can’t differentiate why there’s a gap between sales despite similar infra of shops and all other factors being constant. This leads to a problem in designing new strategies to buck up the sales.

Situation II: Using Shopping Insights

  • Now let’s suppose you use Shopping Insights to get data about the trending shoes in both the cities.
  • The data from the new tool will show you top searched branded shoes in both the cities (if they are listed) by customers
  • Search volume in City A – 12780, number of shoe pairs sold – 240 (Adidas – 145, Puma – 60, Reebok – 20, Nike – 15)

google-insight-city-a

– While the same for City B is 23467, number of shoe pairs sold – 412 (Adidas 72, Puma – 129, Reebok – 104, Nike – 95)

  • Using this data, you will get to know which brand is leading in which city (Adidas in City A | Puma and Reebok in City B) for June and you can plan your stock accordingly.
  • When you know what your target customers are looking for and you have that in your stock. Even the online retailers can search for local product hotspots so that they can accordingly adjust their strategy which will eventually invite more sales, hence more profit.

The tool is additionally a bonus for businesses who will welcome the resourceful insights as offered by the data to know the product’s popularity and trends. This info can then be used by a wise product marketer to target AdWords.

Use From Users’ Perspective

It is not that the tool is only for the businesses and retailers. Shopping Insights is not equally but pretty helpful for customers as well. If you are someone who likes to stay with the latest trends, you can easily find out what specific product is leading in your city.

Let’s take an example

 

  • For instance, you want to buy a phone yet you are not sure which one’s best.
  • You just look up to Google Shopping Insights and enter phones.
  • You get a statistical estimate of the top trending phones as well as the least trending ones.
  • You simply go through the trending ones and make your decision (what’s most people are loving means it’s probably the better choice…isn’t so!) or at least you get a clear idea.

That’s it!

What’s New!

Soon after its release, Google added more features and data to its tool. The most recent update is Shopping Insights v4.2, which was released last year on November 17. The latest version has new interest-based visualization, availability of demographic and national level data, as well as user feedback interface. Additional features were also added, including an option to explore trending products for preceding month, a graphic representation of split between desktop and mobiles, along with a streamlined data picker.

How to Use It

We won’t make it long. Google has made it easy for people to familiarize themselves with the tool. You can visit the official link to get started –
https://shopping.thinkwithgoogle.com/

Google’s Official demo video –

Drawbacks and Limitations of Shopping Insights – Maybe Not a Jack-of-all-Trades!

Like every other thing, Google Shopping Insights is no exception from flaws and limitations. The main issues with the tool are:

  • For now, the data provided by the tool is only about search queries made from April 1, 2014.
  • The data offered is available only for US-based markets.
  • Even the city level data is limited to 16000 US cities.
  • You can only search and analyze the products/services as allowed under Google Shopping Policy.
  • The available data is rated on a 0-100 scale. The reason behind this is to allow a simpler comparative analysis. Yet, the drawback is that the numbers are only estimates and do not reflect the actual search volume.
  • The Shopping Insights tool is no help to the product merchants of items that are regarded under the moderate niche but are still searched and requested by customers.

So What’s Next?

Google Shopping Insights is a great and beautifully designed tool for understanding shopping trends.

For now, everyone has been treating the tool for retailers and suppliers. Interestingly, Shopping Insights is a boon for e-commerce as it opens a new world of opportunity for e-commerce channels to come up with productive and successful strategies. Although limited, it’s a great tool for understanding latest trends for different products( like Posts on Google ) on the city level. The tool stresses basically on retailers, e-commerce, and comparison of local shopping trends.

Google said the tool is a gift for offline retailers, however, it’s significantly useful for online-only retailers as well in redesigning their campaigns on product hotspots. The only big catch in the tool is its inability to serve sellers who offer products that are listed relatively niche yet are still demanded by many users. These products include gifts with limited editions for festivals or special occasions.

All in all, the tool CAN do MUCH MORE yet it all depends on Google that how much it improves it in future. Until then, Shopping Insights can offer businesses a clear sense of what their target audience is searching for BUT it’s still unable to predict what is ACTUALLY being sold.

Although Google Shopping insights will help retailers to see the existing shopping trends, they will still need to rely on their personal analysis and estimates for real data.

 

Brief Analysis of Mary Meeker’s Internet Trends of 2016 & 2017

Brief Analysis of Mary Meeker’s Internet Trends of 2016 & 2017

Mary Meeker is an American venture capitalist and the 77th most influential and powerful woman as listed by Forbes. Mary is also a partner at Silicon Valley venture capital firm Kleiner Perkins Caufield & Byersa. She is known for analyzing latest internet trends and new technologies.

Mary Meeker’s research on internet helps businessmen and marketers to understand the market trends with informative and essential data. When Mary Meeker Internet Trends Report for 2016 was out, it shocked the technologists as they learnt the internet businesses growth rate is slowing down while messaging apps and image sharing is the next thing in future. That report additionally disclosed the high growth rate of smartphone users globally, with India leading massively.

Next year, the statistics were quite different when Mary Meeker introduced the Internet Trends Report for 2017. The internet surfing figure that reached 3.3 billion in 2016 (which was double the amount in 2009), has now been falling flat nearly by 10% every year from the past 5 years. The report suggests users will spend more time on social media and videos. A study on last four years shows that sharing YouTube videos has reduced from 30% to 20% while the same on Facebook evoked from 7% to 14%.

If you are looking for the extract of the reports for both year and trying to come up with a comparison, we have done the legwork for you. From the slide of 355 pages, we have highlighted the significant areas and numbers that affected the market trends in 2016 and 2017. Let’s have a look.

Internet Trends 2016 Vs 2017 : Mary Meekers’ Point of View

SEO Changed Forever

Voice activated search was first recorded in 2014. Moving in 2016, Mary Meeker suggested that there is a high rise in voice searches. Opening Google and typing a query with your hands will be a thing of past. The Google voice search app gives the flexibility to any smartphone user to simply say “Hello Google! Followed by a query” and shows the results with an audio.

In 2017 report, she supported the fact with a 20% increase in voice search queries as compared to 2016, which is estimated to cross 70% by the year 2020. Her 2017 report also pointed that consumer interaction with smartphones is going to affect the ways search and digital marketing work. Image is another searching parameter that will emerge over time.

Voice enabled assistants like Amazon Echo Suite is being used by half of the Amazon users. By the 4th quarter of 2016, Echo had a number of 8 million users which jumped to 11 million by the first quarter of 2017.

goolge-trends

Ad Blocking Gaining Popularity

Ad blocking is being heavily used by mobile users. In 2016, about 400 million users were recorded for the same. Whereas it has lower down to 240 million desktop users for the same Ad blocking software in 2017. In the report, Mary Meeker has pointed out that one in five smartphone users have Ad blocker apps installed on their mobiles.

AdBlockingGaining

What It Means:

  • People are not responding well to the ads
  • Advertisers need to think of new innovative ways to show ads that do not interfere with user experience
  • Marketers need to come up with new interesting revenue models
  • For the time being, companies need to find a way around adblockers, considering a lot of free app economy depends upon it

Google & Facebook Dominating The Web

Google & Facebook advertising platforms have left most of the major ad companies behind in the race within a short span of time. Combining both these companies, they own the advertising revenue of 76% from U.S., which is rapidly growing day by day. The data from both the reports represents the powerful platforms like Google and Facebook have dominated the web with their accurate targeting capabilities and huge amount of databases and will probably continue to do so.

Google&FacebookDominating

Messaging Apps Becoming Basic Need

Social media giant Facebook has almost lured every user to install a separate app for chatting in order to send messages to Facebook friends. Acquisition of WhatsApp & Instagram has made it even stronger. Messaging apps have taken the place of prime communication for consumers.

As the number of users of chatbots is increasing, this communication medium is becoming the center of attraction by potential advertisers. According to Meeker’s predictions, conversation based commerce via voice and messaging will be the next big thing.

Slow Smartphone Sales

2016 & 2017, both recorded a slower growth rate in smartphones sales. Total shipments of smartphones increased just by 3% from 2015 to 2016 which was 10% lesser from 2014 to 2015. This data represents how much the mobile user-base growth has slowed which (was recorded 12% in 2016 compared to 25% in 2015). As shown in slide 9-11, Asia-Pacific is the largest smartphone userbase with the global share of 52%, but the growth rate dropped to 23% opposing 35% in last year.

SlowSmartphoneSales

Consistent Rise in Internet Usage

In 2016 report, global Internet users crossed the 3B mark, with India surpassing the US and taking the spot of second largest Internet market across the world. Even though the 2017 report shows a slowed growth, India continues to be the fastest growing economy. The total number of Internet users in India flew to 28 percent in 2016, which is yet 27 percent of online penetration. Mary Meeker says there’s more possibility for growth. Also, with the down rates of bandwidth, the number of mobile Internet users is also increasing.

What It Means:

  • Except in few countries like India and China, the Internet usage is seeing a decline due to lack of interest and perceived need.
  • Companies need to plan new ideas to target non-internet users to increase overall Internet penetration.
  • Less internet cost may help attract Internet users.
  • Despite of internet becoming affordable and accessible than ever, lack of relevant local content is a reason behind potential internet users not connecting to it.

Online Advertising and E-commerce Becoming Actionable and Measurable

Online advertising and e-commerce has been seeing continuous growth owing to the increase in the number of Internet users. The advertising has become more mobile specific with ready to cross $200B mark sometime soon in future (from both Global TV Ad Spend and Global Internet Ad Spend). According to 2016 report, Google and Facebook have been the top two companies to earn highest advertising revenues (with Google: 20% growth and Facebook: 62%).

OnlineAdvertising

China’s Economy Continues to Rise

Stated in the 2016 report as an Internet leader on various metrics, China continues to bring forth a golden age of transportation and entertainment together. The new reports hints consumers’ increased interest in games, videos, and livestreaming. It surpassed the US in global interactive game revenue and top retailer rankings in 2016 and the new report shows even higher difference.

ChinaEconomyContinuesto

Automated Transportation and Wearable Tech is Future

Also mentioned in the 2016 Mary Meeker report as the new paradigm in human-computer interaction, automation and wearable covers a part in 2017 too, although the new report lays much emphasis on healthcare wearables. The 2017 report shows increasing adoption of wearables (25% Americans having one as compared to 12% in 2016). More than 60 percent of consumers are ready to share their health data with companies like Google in 2016.

AutomatedTransportationandWearable

India – An Ever-Growing Platform for Internet

While the 2016 report kind of ignored the fact, the new report brings forth the part being played by India in the global market. From one of the largest Internet userbase to high smartphones sales, India is looking as a good platform for new technologies. The 2017 Mary Meeker’s internet trends report highlights India as a potential and key market for internet trends on the planet. Mary covered all the fields ranging from e-commerce, competitive hardware and software market, and wireless data, to Android users and Internet growth.

IndiaAnEver-GrowingPlatformforInternet

Conclusion

When Mary Meeker released the reports of internet trends of 2016 and 2017, the unexpected data turned the heads of many marketing researchers. As the iOS mobile market was at its peak, a sudden increase in Android users crossed half of the market shares during early 2016. While Asian countries like India and China spotted the top positions in terms of the number of internet users in 2017, the US remained stagnant. Snapchat, the face swapping app became the new social champion among Facebook, Twitter, and WhatsApp.

2017, the year of mobile revolution recorded a shift of more than 500 million users from desktop to mobiles. The new way of internet search using ‘voice over mobile’ helped marketers to clearly understand what the customer is searching in a new dimension.

To stay relevant in the ever-changing market, marketers/businesses need to go hand in hand with innovation, which can be better achieved through customer understanding and engagement.

So this was our take on the Internet trends reports of 2016 and 2017 by Mary Meeker. Got a suggestion or something to share? Leave us your feedback in comments below.

Google Attribution Overview – Google’s Marketing Tool of 2017 in a Nutshell

Google Attribution Overview – Google’s Marketing Tool of 2017 in a Nutshell

Google made a significant announcement during its latest event – Google Marketing Next conference, in San Francisco a few weeks ago. But what’s in for you? Check out this article to know how this new tool can redefine your marketing strategies.

Before everything, let’s have a quick overview of what attribution is and what is Google Attribution.

Attribution in marketing is used as a process of identifying the causes of certain user actions and assigning these actions some credit. It is basically related to determining what media are bringing purchases from users.

There are various types of attribution models used by marketers according to their needs. Attribution works as the powerhouse of marketing as these models help marketers keep a track of their advertising campaigns and know what works and what not.

There were many issues in the earlier attribution models, calling for a better and feature-rich solution. Google plans to solve the problems faced by previous tools with Google Attribution.

Google Attribution is the latest marketing tool that aims at making it easy for marketers to derive bidding decisions using attribution data that is calculated on the basis of role they play in the complete buyer’s journey.

Let’s know what problems does Google Attribution Solves

After going through the link, now you know the three main attribution models used by marketers in their ad campaigns:

  • First Click
  • Linear
  • Last Click

The issue with all three models is that they do not assign appropriate credit to user actions and touch points as they should. First Click and Linear models assign complete credit to only one or equal credits to all, whereas in Last Click model the entire credit is given only to the last click.

This does not let marketers get a complete idea of how and what actions by users are affecting their channel and ad campaigns.

That’s one of the main reasons behind less popularity of Last Click model.

There are other points where the existing models lack. For instance, the existing attribution models do not give information about offline to online effects. As a result, marketers cannot estimate marketing impacts precisely for different marketing channels that happen later in the user’s’ journey.

So How’s The New Attribution Model Better?

Google hopes to kick out the issues faced by the existing models with the new attribution. It is advanced, makes better use of data, and give more precise insights into the media channels and their performance.

Google Attribution additionally offers one more benefits. It lets you get a complete idea about users. Here’s how.

Chasing the User

  • The new model lets you understand the entire conversion journey of a user across all channels.
  • It then lets you track the total number of touchpoints (clicks) a user connects with a brand through. This includes every insight from the first engagement with the brand to the conversion.
  • This makes it possible for you to find the ways digital channels can work together.
  • It additionally lets you explore and come with a more holistic view of overarching digital strategy, promotion of integration between different channels, devices, and mediums.

As quoted by Matt Haig, Author of “Mobile Marketing – The Message Revolution”,

“End users not technologies shape the market. Consequently, marketers need to stay abreast not only of technological developments but also of the way people respond to them.”

IDEALLY, the new model should make sure that every channel gets due credit for each sale, on the basis of the unique habits and nuances of consumer behavior that affects a brand. This is again something that has been missing in the existing models.

Bye Bye Last-Click

Over the past few years, the search engine giant has been working on ways to get rid of the ‘last-click’ attribution from its platforms, especially AdWords. It is due to the fact that the company wants its platforms to show modern search habits in a better way and eliminate the not-so-productive approach of Last-Click model that lays emphasis only on the last click.

In short, Google Attribution takes the data and functionalities of AdWords, Analytics, and DoubleClick Search and integrates all of them into one platform. This lets marketers link their reports without having to do further sale tagging. They can also manage performance under a single platform.

Due to native integrations, marketers can feed back the modeled conversion data into the Google AdWords or DoubleClick Search to make bidding decisions. One thing to note here is that Google Attribution’s aspect of working does not apply only to paid marketing channels like PPC and display.

Rather it applies to all channels such as:

  • Affiliate Marketing
  • Direct Traffic
  • Organic Search
  • Social Media

What will be the impact?

To get a better overview of how and what difference Google Attribution may bring to the existing marketing strategies of the marketers, let’s have an imaginary comparison between the ad campaign of the same company when it follows –

  1. Last-Click Attribution
  2. Google Attribution

Here is an example:

Let’s assume a company X with $10 million marketing budget and they decide their marketing budget according to the attribution data of the previous year.

To keep it simple, we assumed that company’s decision is only based on the last-click model’s attribution data.

Say, the previous year attribution data shows:

Paid Ads: 80%
SEO: 10%
Social Media: 10%

Using the Last Click attribution, the company will take an informed decision to allocate $8mn in Paid ads, 1mn in Social Media, and $1mn in SEO.

Let’s assume according to Google attribution, here is the attribution that it gives:

Paid Ads: 50%
SEO: 30%
Social Media: 20%

With this data, company will decide to allocate $5mn to Paid Ads, $3mn to SEO, and $2mn to Social Media.

Did you see it is very different from what the company did with the previous attribution model!

With more accurate attribution models, companies would not only be able to decide their budgets better for each marketing model but can also come up with better performing strategies.

Chief Marketing Officer at Visual IQ, Bill Muller also has something to say on marketing attribution solutions.

“Whatever your industry, determining the right metrics ultimately comes down to identifying the connective tissue that ties marketing activities to business results.”

 

Here’s What Google Attribution is Based on:

1. Machine-Driven Regression Attribution

Google has introduced versions of attribution to its other tools like Analytics’ Multi-channel Future reports. But these rely upon defined attribution models like

  • first click
  • Linear
  • and last click

Here Google Attribution serves with “Data Driven” attribution which according to Google, will use advanced machine learning compare purchase paths. It will also help you analyze what’s working and what’s not on the basis of a site’s own data!   What if it works? If so, then this would be no less than a variation on a ‘regression’ attribution model that uses historical data to express the weighting of credit applied to every touchpoint and give a better and precise attribution model. This is obviously something that current attribution models do not offer.

2. Don’t Miss the Data-Driven Factor

Even though the basic concept behind ‘Data-Driven’ attribution is not new, but what makes it seem better in Google Attribution is that it addresses the main issue in the regression model – TIME! So far, the time has been the main turn off behind why regression model does not find application widely. 

Being a marketer, you should know it takes time to

  • collect data
  • calculate the model
  • and derive the suitable insight out of it. 

Google Attribution fixes the issue and offers a dedicated attribution model customized to a business’ marketing activity and customers.

All this without needing manual labor, just data!

3. Content Optimization Made Easy

When it becomes easy to know how users interact with your brand throughout different devices, marketers can without much effort optimize their brand’s UI across all of them.

Now what does it mean?

Well, here’s the kicker. It means your brand will be able to rethink and optimize its content for each particular device. This way, brands can make sure that they do not miss out the engagement and dialogue factor towards audiences while they change their devices.

4. Useful for Call-to-Action or Gateway Terms

If you think from a paid search perspective, the new Google Attribution tool will give brands much-needed visibility across the call-to-action or gateway terms. 

But wait! What are these terms?

Such terms are known as keywords that help businesses in driving sales. However, these terms aren’t generally credited under a last-click attribution model.

Unlike existing attribution models, Google Attribution lets you overview the complete picture and derive smarter decisions on how these terms work with your overall keyword strategy and the benefit they bring.

 

Google Attribution works with less effort and more results:

 

  • It does not demand additional setup as it makes use of data that is already available via other Google products.
  • It then offers actionable insights into the complete purchase journey of users on a site.
  • As already mentioned above, marketers can then pass back the data to AdWords or DoubleClick Search to help with the bidding decisions.

Also, Google Attribution does not need further sale tagging.

To use the new model, all you need to do is just:

  • Link a Google Analytics view that is associated with a registered AdWords or DoubleClick Search account.
  • After you have set up your account, Attribution imports data related to performance from the respective Analytics view (the account you linked).
  • This may also include offline conversion event data that has been earlier uploaded to Google Analytics.
  • Afterward, marketers can separately assign an attribution model to specific conversion events.

Alike Analytics, they can compare models side-by-side.

Nothing Comes Perfect: Flaws in Google’s New Attribution Model

Although the new product seems to have several advantages over the existing models, it does have its own set of flaws that being a marketer you should consider first. 

  • A few of the attribution models in the tool do not offer complete picture. This means some of the models focuses only on certain activities, skipping the total number of times a user has viewed content from channels. 
  • Some models do not comprise of ‘post view’, which means your reports could have ignored the fold impressions (the ones that users never viewed). This may end up giving you false idea of a channel’s working post view. 

There’s struggle between some attribution models and cross device attribution. Attribution would not show cross-device activity that took place between a desktop user on Google and a mobile user on Facebook, unless and until the email ID used to sign in both the Android and Facebook account matches.

Cost

As for now, Google Attribution will be free to use. The company plans to make the service accessible for all marketers to bring about improvements in their current marketing and advertising practices.

Finals Words – Anything Else To Know

At present, the new model is still in its beta phase. Google will roll out the tool in the upcoming months, giving answers to the expectations, rumors, and assumptions about it, including:

  • The difference between the enterprise and the free version
  • The extent up to which the offline conversions and store visits are included
  •  TV attribution included

All these queries can be answered only in the coming months when Google will finally roll out Google Attribution. Apart from it, the other notable announcement during the event includes launch of promoted places and local inventory ads for retailers, which will let them market special offers and display whether or not the products are available at a local store. It will also offer an option to link customer loyalty cards to Google Adwords to offer a better insight on the way digital is bringing in-store sales.

All this is yet to hit worldwide, so the best option is to stay tuned with us for latest updates on Google’s latest attribution model. Till then, enjoy the beta version.

Chatbots: Taking Over the Global Marketing

Chatbots: Taking Over the Global Marketing

Do you have time for a chat? Chatbots always do.

“People-to-people conversations, people-to-digital assistants, people-to-bots … that’s the world you’re going to get to see in the years to come.” – Microsoft CEO Satya Nadella.

After the launch of chatbot channels by Facebook and Kik last year, thousands of chatbots have been built by various brands and developers on these platforms. And even more are expected to come in 2017.

The spike in this chart is at the time when facebook announced to open its platform for chatbots and there has been a steady increase in the trends. Facebook decided to deliver automated e-commerce guidance, customer support and interactive experiences through chatbots. Mark Zuckerberg wants to connect businesses more to the customers. He said – “We think you should be able to message a business like you would message a friend.” And that’s what messenger is doing now a days.

Now let’s understand some quick stats based on a recent study. This is about what people want from businesses in terms of support and availability.

  1.  51% people want a business to be available 24/7.
  2.  45.8% people prefer messaging over email to contact business.
  3.  49.4% people prefer messaging over phone to contact business.

Let’s see where chatbots stand in all these facts.

  1. Chatbots allow businesses to be available to the people 24 hours a day, 7 days a week.
  2. Chatbots are broadcast over messaging apps like facebook messenger, kik, etc.
  3. Chatbots allow consumers to have a direct contact without dealing over phone calls.

It thus, eliminates the annoying duty of putting call on hold and navigating to different departments by pressing various buttons.

The 3 stats above clearly indicates that using chatbots will highly improve interaction between businesses and customers.

 

  • Although the bot revolution is in its early phase, but the enthusiasm is clearly growing among the customers and businesses.
  • But wait!
  • What chatbot is? What they do? Let’s clear them up all!

What are chatbots?

A chatbot is a computer program which is designed to create a conversation with the humans over the Internet with the text or digital chats. In simple terms, it is a chat service powered by artificial intelligence that is rising as the new voice of consumers. The conversational abilities of these bots are getting stronger with time due to advancement in Natural Language Processing  (NLP) and Artificial Intelligence (AI).

These chatbots are programmed in a couple of different ways. The most primary one is rule-based. These types of bots are similar to the automated consumer service lines (eg. “press 1 for English”), guiding them through a decision tree model. They extract the user’s natural language and converts it into a command that machines understand.

The most powerful thing about them is that they provide the most natural interface i.e. language. They allow users to remove the hindrance of buttons and pixels and letting them present their questions and interests in their own words.

How chatbots are transforming the industries?

Initially, these were designed for customer service but now its evolution has made them ideal for marketing. The bots can mimic a human and have a conversation with the customers that can purely reflect the brand’s identity if scripted well.

At present, the brand new platform is messaging and the latest apps are bots. This shift is changing the end-user experience and will definitely change how the brands interact with the customers. Although these are still the early days of chatbot era, but many brands have adopted this trend of communication to boost their marketing efforts. Surprisingly, these brands are already seeking a huge spike in terms of customer engagement and satisfaction and thus the techniques of brand marketing are transforming.

The most  incomparable feature of chatbots is their 24*7 availability. It can behave like one of your customer support executive that works for a full day and thus reducing the customer’s query response time. A constant support from an authentic source will make the customer and producers relationship more meaningful and strong. As per the survey of Microsoft in 2014:

“66% of US consumers are willing spend more money on the company that provides them with excellent customer services while 60% of the consumers have not completed the purchase due to poor customer support experience.”

Other common benefits are:

  • Improvement in customer self-service engagement.
  • Refine customer satisfaction ratings and lower the customer effort scores.
  • Dehumanize daily customer questions to allow human agents to focus on other important tasks.
  • Reduce costs by diverting chats, email, and calls.
  • Produce true data through the conversations.

Examples of Popular Bots

GrowthBot :

The primary purpose of GrowthBot is marketing and sales, and the platforms for it are Slack, Twitter and Facebook Messenger. It is created by Dharmesh Shah, the founder of Hubspot and is connected with a variety of external sources like Hubspot and Google Analytics. You can ask questions like: “What software do xyz.com is using for sales?” or “What keywords do xyz.com is ranking for?” Its recent ability to inform sophisticated information like PPC’s estimated traffic, and money spent by a company on marketing is a proof that its functionality is growing vigorously. So, instead of asking to a colleague about the organic traffic of last week, you can ask a chatbot about the organic traffic that would respond automatically. Here are the examples of the things that GrowthBot can answer currently in its infant stage.

  • Tell me about a person using its email
  • Any company’s information
  • Top articles of Blog or Website
  • Top articles about a topic
  • Technology used by any website
  • Show me something funny

It can also of the basic tasks by connecting with tools like Google Analytics and your hubspot account. For example:

 

  • Connect my Hubspot account
  • Add contact
  • Find lead
  • Traffic of last week / month / year
  • Number of customers we get last month
GrowthBot Chatbot Features

Google Assistant :

The interesting part about Google’s Assistant is it’s AI digital assistant on Allo. Unlike Google Now, it allows users to ask queries and receive responses in a two-way conversational way. It generates smart suggestions to users. As the company is using machine learning a decade-long so it’s likely that Allo will be very beneficial to the customers in terms of smart responses. In future, it can become the primary interface for communicating with Google.

You can also involve Google Assistant to your existing conversation with a friend or group by typing @google. Using Google Assistant within the chat will give you an advantage of not changing the windows and getting the desired information in the existing window. Thus, removes interruption within a conversation. Also, getting results within the chat window will improve the CTR and conversions because it gives user the instant access to the things they are looking for. The results shown within a conversation has a more possibility to get converted.

Amazon’s Alexa :

Amazon’s Alexa is an intelligent personal assistant that is able to do voice interaction, purchasing items, setting alarms, music playback, playing audiobooks, weather report and real time information like news. It can also control the small devices for home automation. Currently, interaction with Alexa is only available in German and English.

You can make a voice purchase request through Alexa. It will search among the items in order history or Amazon’s highly rated and well-priced products. Alexa will tell you its availability along with price and other specifications. After that, it will ask you to confirm or cancel the order. If Alexa can’t find the requested item because of any reason then it may do one of the following things:

  • Add item to Amazon’s cart
  • Add item to Alexa’s shopping list
  • Find more options 

TechCrunch Bot :

The chatbot created by Techcrunch helps you in getting latest updates about the topics and stories that you care about. You can subscribe to various topics and authors, and the bot will send you latest article about the things you are interested in.

Popular Platforms open for chatbots:

Facebook Messenger:

As the Facebook Messenger is rising popularity due to implementation of chatbots, more and more companies are launching their own chatbots on this platform. Once you add these bots in your messenger, you can converse with them and receive information in a more smarter way. Currently, facebook messenger has 34,000 bots and it is assume that there are more to come. It can allow your followers to get answers to FAQs and more. It’s a simple medium to have interaction of your followers with your business to purchase tickets, see a menu, get directions, set up an appointment, etc. And with the advancement, chatbots can now accept payments on Messenger, without sending people to an external website.

Slack:

The primary use of Slack is for workplace communication. It supports bots and can be used for customer support and collaborating with online communities. In the companies, it has a venture fund investment and enables bots on its platform. It has its own help bot which can occasionally send you helpful messages which you can afterwards reply with the text chat commands. Now the company has finally expanded its original concept and produce an external API that will allow developers to create their bots on Slack through Slack’s app directory.

Skype:

Microsoft surprised everyone by their Bot Framework release. They have opened the Skype to automated bots with features of text and image messages, similar to other platforms. They have also introduced something new i.e. video bots. Also Bots within the groups are also supported. Skype is the very popular audio and video communication platform and because of this popularity, it will have relatively low competition as compared to other platforms.

WeChat:

WeChat is an early leader in the bot industry and is dominant in China. There are more than 700 million users worldwide. It heavily supports the elements other than text. It also supports mini applications that are embedded in the conversation. Due to these extra features, bot developers should go beyond providing simple text and provide some kind of compelling user experiences.

Chatbots as Marketing Agents:

Business owners can’t afford to ignore chatbots because they are becoming the next big thing in the marketing world. According to a survey by Oracle, 80% of the business leaders said that they already used chatbots or planning to use them by 2020. Additionally, 42% participants believe that automation technologies will improve their customer experience in coming future.

Normally, they are used to answer basic questions like product information, company information or weather forecast.
Many big brands like Uber, Kik and more are using chatbots to interact with the customers and driving more engagement. If the brands know how to use them, they can become an incredibly powerful marketing tool. Let’s see how you can start marketing with chatbots:

Sell Your Products & Services:

Business owners are mostly busy in managing teams, closing deals and executing various entrepreneurial tasks. Because of their extra busy schedule, they can’t give more attention to the customers.

How about cloning yourself? Chatbots can allow you to be in multiples places at the same time. According to the types of products and services, you can use chatbot to sell your products for you. They are online 24/7 and can seriously make money while you sleep.

E Commerce websites are more likely to get benefits from these Bots as they can use bots in nights to generate leads and this will allow the business owners to utilize the human resources in where else.

Easy Payments:

Some of the chatbots are even capable of taking and processing the payments. This will make easier for the customers to give you money. It only takes a few clicks to handle the transaction by chatbots for you. For example, PayPal has recently launched its very first bot on Slack. With this, you will be easily able to send money between different PayPal accounts, without leaving the Slack Conversation. Now sending money from your PayPal account to your friends account is as easy as typing “PayPal send $50 to @James”.

Get deep customer insights:

Chatbots have the powerful ability to collect deep insights of your customers. You can change the program of your chatbot to monitor the customers’ purchasing patterns and habits. By tracking them, you’ll get to know the products or services they choose and the common issues that arise with the offerings.

One more benefit is that it can store details about the questions asked by the users. This will not only make it capable to answer future questions but also give a better understanding about the customers needs. Another benefit is, using information from the user’s questions to create a content strategy. It will be very beneficial for enhancing engagement.

Marketing gets personalized:

Your brand’s website is not enough to give your customers a more personalized experience. A chatbot engages with the customers more humanly. Addressing customers with their first name or suggesting more products from the information gathered of them, is a good way to personalize the conversation.

Hike in engagement:

Your customer will more likely to buy if you can engage them with your brand. Usually, engagement is defined as the actions like clicking or commenting. But with the chatbots, soon it’s going to change. The meaning of engagement will go beyond just making sales and answering questions. Chatbots will actually help you in creating a brand loyalty. 

Developers are improving Chatbots daily by upgrading the services provided by them to the users. They can also help you in positioning  the company as a technology leader.

This wave of AI chatbots is just a beginning of innovative marketing revolution. It’s already changing the way people interact with the internet  and the businesses interact with their customers. If you’re planning to get into the chatbot game, now is the perfect time. We believe that the chatbots can be a boon to your business. How you use them to boost the sales and marketing is limited by your creativity only.

What do you think about this modern chatbot revolution? Do you use chatbots at your business? Feel free to share your opinions on chatbots in the comments below.

Powerful Guidelines to Generate Massive In-App Revenue

Powerful Guidelines to Generate Massive In-App Revenue

Building a potential app is not enough, you need to review the monetization strategy. If the app is providing equivalent free options and not more than that then many of your clients will find any other substitute in the App Store weight loss supplements. Because of this, depending on advertising for revenue is a convenient option. But these ads can be unwanted and distract for users.

So, how will you achieve the steady stream of earnings without sacrificing the user experience? Below is the concise introduction to in-app advertising basics which will help you in finding the best ad monetization strategy.

FOCUS ON TARGET AUDIENCE

In-app advertising provides a better solution to perfectly target the users and suggest them to interact with the brands. It provides a close connection with the user on a personal level. Users expect a high level of personalisation so keep in mind your customer’s expectation before executing an ad. Both the publisher and the advertiser could suffer because of not targeting the correct audience with the quality ads.

CONTENT QUALITY

It’s very important for both, advertisers and publishers, to understand that in-app ads are an important part of the total user experience. So, you must confirm that your content doesn’t drive the user away. Ads should be pleasing, valuable, enjoyable, approaching their needs and interests. To attain this, you need to understand that what the target audience would like to see for the next 30 seconds. Improvement in overall user experience will result in higher engagement and conversion rates.

PICK THE RIGHT AD FORMAT

Technical potentials of an in-app ad are changing as the mobiles are evolving. It is very necessary to consider the right format for your targeted audience to produce a high ROI. Below are the 8 common types of ads:

Standard Banner Ads

These ads are clean and sharp, compelling the clients to click on them. It is a very popular ad format because it is very noticeable, placed either at the bottom or the top of the screen. It is the safest and simplest way to forward the brand name to many people without annoying them.

Interstitial Ads

These ads are the full-screen ads that can take the complete screen of the users. They are mostly positioned either when the app is loading or while closing the app. Its disadvantage is that it can be intrusive to the user as it covers the full screen.

Notification Ads

These are designed to pop up in the mobile’s status bar to make users well informed of the ad. However, it can be sometimes very annoying and can damage the reputation of your app.

Native ads

These are integrated within the apps. These don’t look like ads at first glance, making them easily acquired by the audience.

Hyper-Local Targeted Ads

Many of the apps ask for the permission to access client’s location after downloading the app. These use GPS data of smartphones to geographically locate the audience for delivering relevant ads.

Video ads

These type of ads have the high level of engagement and are very simple. They need a good budget and gives high conversion rate when the content is related and captivating. There are 3 types of video ads – Pre-Roll, Mid-Roll, and End-Roll. Pre-roll ad arrives before the video has begun, Mid-roll in the middle of the video and End-Roll after the video.

FREQUENCY AND PLACEMENT

Get your user’s attention without being too annoying. Along with the placement, you also need to focus on the frequency of the ads. If you wait for a long time, then your conversion rate will suffer and if you execute them in a short period of time, then you can frustrate them and they will end up closing the app.

There are many reasons to uninstall your app, but the poor user experience is one of the most common reason. Your proper ad monetization strategy can result in boosting high revenue and giving customer satisfaction.