Will the Internet Sales Tax Bill Help or Hurt the Small Business Retailer?

585040_business_buttonsPresident Obama on Monday, said that the proposed Marketplace Fairness Act, which would require online retailers to collect sales tax, “will level the playing field for local small business retailers that are in competition every day with large out-of-state online companies.”

Far be it for me to disagree with the President, but I don’t see it.

Let’s take this step-by-step. Brick and mortar stores say they’re going out of business because people are choosing to buy online instead of in their store. I believe this is true. I don’t think it’s a stretch to say that Amazon helped put Borders out of business.

Upgrade to Enhanced Campaigns Using Google’s New Adwords Upgrade Center

Google Adwords Upgrade Center 2Google really wants you to upgrade to their enhanced campaigns quickly. It has nothing to do with them making more money or anything. It’s all about the advertiser ;-).

From their Inside Adwords blog

Enhanced campaigns help you reach people with the right ads based on their context – including location, time of day and device – without having to set up and manage several separate campaigns. For most advertisers, upgrading is a simple 3-step process. Already, advertisers have upgraded more than 1.5 million campaigns and seen strong results.

While many Adwords users might disagree it is the way of the future. Here is the Inside Adwords explanation of the new upgrade center followed by a screenshot which is a bit hard to see but you get the idea.

Facebook Announces New Layout For Mobile Business Pages

New Pages Layout FacebookFacebook has announced a new look for the mobile presentation of its Facebook Pages for business.

Their Facebook Studio site outlines the new features

For people

A cleaner, simpler look, with better Page layouts for mobile viewing

More relevant information up front so people can see the information they care about most – such as location and photos – at a glance

Streamlined and prominent ways to interact with Pages, including actions such as Like, Call, Message, and Share, all of which now appear at the top of Pages

For Page owners

Higher-appearing pinned posts, where admins can pin important posts (including offers or videos) from their desktops; these posts are now front and center when Pages are accessed on mobile devices

USA Today Sports Launches Social News Site

And in sports, Bryce Harper shares a terrible photo of his bedroom, Roy Hibbert and David Lee really, really dislike each other, and Andrew Luck’s cell phone looks almost as old as him.

Hmm. . . that might sound like a slow news day, but those are actually three of the top stories on USA Today’s new sports site. It’s called ‘For the Win‘, “the first mainstream sports media property focused exclusively on “social news,” with a steady stream of stories that fans are, or will be, talking about right now.”

for the win

The whole thing is sponsored by Right Guard so it feels a little like an advertorial when you hit the page. Once you get past that, it’s an intriguing, new way to deliver light news.

‘Online Privacy is Dead’ Says Study and Millennials Are Okay with That

annenberg studyEvery time we talk about a new social media network or online marketing move, privacy is an issue. But according to a new survey conducted by the USC Annenberg Center for the Digital Future and Bovitz Inc., it’s going to be less of a concern in the near future. Why? Not because we’re working on ways to make the internet more secure, but because Millennials aren’t as concerned as their elders.

When faced with the statement, “No one should ever be allowed to have access to my personal data or web behavior,” 70% of Millennials (18-34) agreed, compared with 77% of users 35 and older.

70% is still a lot of objectors but that 7% shows a shift in thinking that is likely to continue as the Millennials rise up and take over the world (those that haven’t already.)

Five Questions You Must Answer Before Testing Your Landing Page

WebTrends Landing Page White PaperThis post is presented by Marketing Pilgrim’s Analytics Channel Sponsor WebTrends. It was written by Karen Wood, Sr. Product Marketing Manager at Webtrends.

It’s a cold, hard reality that your landing page has just four seconds to capture a visitor’s attention. Not only that, landing pages are the stage in the campaign funnel most vulnerable to customer abandonment—converting, on average, just three percent of visitors.

This so-called success rate begs the questions: Is three percent acceptable to your bottom line? And what is it about your marketing efforts the other 97 percent rejected?

The Hard Truth on “Gut-Feel” Marketing

All too often, poor campaign performance is rooted in human condition. Many marketing decisions aren’t based on data, but rather on opinion—and often, that opinion is just the highest paid person’s gut feeling. As a result, the marketing team is sent down a path without any certainty that what they are doing will produce results.

Does Social Sign-In Shift Signal Trouble for Facebook?

Social sign-ins are the perfect way for sign in providers to take advantage of the typical lazy Internet user. Rather than having to remember pesky logins and passwords for many sites, users can sign in using any number of social login options. The major players are the usual suspects of Facebook, Google+, Twitter, Yahoo! and more.

As a quick refresher, here is a definition of a social sign in from eMarketer and the warning label that is implied with all of them.

Social login allows users to sign in to sites using their social network ID and avoid creating yet another username and password. Marketers can then gather customer insights on the user from their social profile, as well as potentially post the user’s site activity to a network. Of course, marketers must be extremely careful about how they frame and implement social login, as privacy concerns are a leading reason users shy away from the service.

The real concern for those who are aware of just what information they are offering their favorite social network via this activity is privacy. Since the majority of Internet users are either A) unaware of the privacy issues related to social logins or B) couldn’t care less about the privacy issues associated. The likelihood being that most fall in the latter category.

But let’s get to the numbers! Who’s winning this race?

Social Sign In ID Preferences