Holiday retail season is almost here! Bring on Chrismukkah, Cyber Monday and Festivus! Soon, many companies will start to offer an array of discounts to boost their holiday sales. Offering a discount is easy enough, but what type is most effective? There are many options to incentivize potential customers, including free shipping, percentage discounts and amount discounts. Consumers respond differently to each discount type based on their age and other factors. How do you decide which discounts to offer this holiday season?
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The 2014 Back-to-School shopping season led to significant year-over-year increases in ecommerce sales. Both online brands and traditional brick-and-mortar stores, such as Best Buy and JCPenny’s, saw substantial increases in their ecommerce sales. The infographic below sheds light on the 2014 Back-to-School shopping season along with the top ecommerce winners.

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Let’s be honest, Google Analytics is awesome. You instantly have access to a trove of website and consumer data, helping inform online decisions. But it can also easily overwhelm you with the scale of data and opportunities for analysis. To make your life easier, here are 5 new or enhanced Google Analytics features that might not have hit your radar but are likely to make your life easier by making your reporting more robust:

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Curious about how your 2014 email marketing performance compares to others in your industry? Our new infographic highlights key email metrics across industries, providing a baseline for open, click-through and unsubscribe rates. After you browse the data, check out our recommendations and advice for monitoring and optimizing your overall email marketing performance.*

 

2014 Email Marketing Trends by Industry

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Google just released an iPhone app for Google Analytics, providing mobile website monitoring from the convenience of your smartphone.  While Google has had an Android Analytics app for a couple years, this is Google’s first Analytics for iPhone app.

There have been several 3rd party apps on the market for GA.  All of them are paid and have some quirks with their integration.  Because of this, we highly recommend downloading the new Google app. It’s free and will not have any of the data delays or occasional differences you may see with a 3rd party app. 
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A few months ago we highlighted Gmail’s new promotions tab, which makes for a much more visual email experience (Google Makes Your Inbox Pinteresting). Despite this feature being adopted by users, many brands are not optimizing emails to this format. From the image below, it is clear that emails optimized for this lay-out really pop-out, increasing likelihood for engagement.

 

Gmail Promotions Inbox

 
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In order to make it easier to research and understand your target audience, Facebook recently enhanced the Audience Insights Tool. Previously, audience segmentation was only possible in the Power Editor or Ad Creation Tool and the resulting information was not extremely detailed. Now you can target your audience and easily discover insights about it before creating your first ad!

To get started – select Audience Insights from Ad Manager and decide whether to target your Facebook fans or all Facebook users (or a previously created custom audience). The basic details about your audience can be set once this decision is made.

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New Facebook Ad

Facebook with the new right-side column ads

In April, Facebook announced plans to overhaul the right-side column ads.  Long-term concerns about engagement and visual quality led to these changes. Facebook is selectively rolling out the new right-side ads with a complete transition occurring August 1st. Here is what you need to know about the new format along with expected impact of the change.

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