Marketing Pilgrim's "Research" Channel

Sponsor Marketing Pilgrim's Research Channel today! Get in front of some of the most influential readers in the Internet and social media marketing industry. Contact us today!

Track the Popularity of Social Media Sites

Esnips’ Eran Arkin has compiled a nice list of the “movers and shakers” of social media – aka Web 2.0 sites.

It’s based on Alexa data, so not necessarily the most accurate gauge of what’s popular, but if nothing else, it’s a great way to view all of your favorite social networks.

What is interesting? Marketing Pilgrim has more traffic than Odeo, Oodle, Pageflakes, Zoho and Feedster – yep, as I was saying, you have to trust the Alexa data. ;-)

Via TechCrunch

“The Sky is Falling” on eCommerce Spending

eMarketer Daily looked into its crystal ball once again Monday to produce another collection of contradictory studies and quotations. This time, we get to debate whether eCommerce will plateau soon or continue to grow the way it has (article free & live for a limited time).

The problem with exponential or even linear growth is that as you get bigger and bigger, it becomes more and more difficult to sustain the same rate of growth—but not necessarily the same amount of growth. For example, if there are 100 retailers online in 2005, 50 new retailers in 2006 is 50% growth. Add 50 more retailers in 2007, and suddenly the growth rate “plummets” to 33.3%. Also, 100% saturation doesn’t seem like a realistic goal in this generation, so yes, growth will eventually slow down.

What Shoppers Want for Christmas This Year

Allurent, Inc. has released its “Holiday Shopping: Online Customer Experience Survey.” Their main finding is:

The survey revealed that a growing number of consumers (41% in 2006 compared to 28% in 2005) said a frustrating online experience would make them less likely to shop at that retailer’s physical store. And 59% reported that when they have a frustrating shopping experience online, it negatively impacts their overall opinion of the retailer/brand. In 2005, this number was 55%. The percentage of consumers who said a frustrating shopping experience online makes them less likely to shop at the retailer’s physical store remained at an overwhelming 82%, the same as 2005. [sic]

Based on last year’s study, I believe the last sentence should read, “The percentage of consumers who said a frustrating shopping experience online makes them less likely to return to the retailer’s website remained at an overwhelming 82%, the same as 2005.”

66% of Internet users viewed online video; Wal-Mart joins the fray

Advertising.com has released a study that indicates that 66% of Internet users age 18 and up surveyed viewed online video content at least once a week. Advertising.com divided their results into two age demographics: 18 to 34 and 35 and up.

Key findings for each demographic included:

  • 18 to 34

    • 44% of online video viewers fell into this age group.
    • Most popular video-related activities: watching TV episodes online, creating videos and forwarding clips to friends.
    • Prefers streaming entertainment (music videos, TV shows, movie trailers).
  • 35 and up
    • A whopping 56% of online video viewers were age 35 or over.
    • More likely to stream news and sports clips.

Online Fastest Growing Advertising Medium

Outsell, Inc. has released a report that seems to indicate that we are reaching the end of an era: they project broadcast and print ad spending will decrease in 2007. Key findings of their survey of 1010 advertising professionals include:

  • Online spending growing the fastest: companies plan to increase online spending by 18% this year as online advertising’s market share increases to 20% of advertising spend.
  • Advertisers perceive online advertising as “very effective” for branding, a reversal of their “conventional wisdom.”
  • Search marketing is the fastest growing online medium: advertisers plan to increase search engine advertising spend by 39% (though Outsell didn’t indicate whether this was SEO, PPC or both in its press release).
  • PPC ads’ market share will actually decrease 1% this year; other online media will grow (CPA ads: 8%; “online sponsorships” 12%).

Keyword Research Guide Worth a Look

I love to collect free PDF white papers, but I hardly ever read them. I made an exception for the recent release of “Keyword Research and Selection: The Definitive Guide to Gathering, Sorting and Organizing Your Keywords into a High-Performance SEO Campaign” by Stoney G. deGeyter (and Jason Green) of E-Marketing Performance and Pole Position Marketing.

“Keyword Research and Selection” is an excellent place to begin your keyword research. It offers good advice and best practices for keyword research. For example, “KRS” advises: “Don’t get locked into using the keyword phrase precisely as its most often searched, even if the stemmed variations show little search volume” (13).

Keyword Research and SelectionStoney and Jason address another attitude that I’ve encountered all too often: “Don’t promote terms on the basis of generating hits, instead promote terms on the basis of generating sales” (15). I know lots of legitimate SEOs (ie not crooks) who focus too much on high search volume keywords that will never convert.

The points I happen to disagree with in the text are pretty minor:

  • ”When researching competition it is good to type 2 or 3 keywords at a time into the search field as this will furnish a list of competitors that are specifically targeting a similar audience” (16). It might be a way to identify larger competitors, but it’s also important to identify who each keyword’s specific competitors are. There may not be overlap, even in highly similar keywords.
  • That aside, there isn’t enough on measuring the strength of competitor pages. If the top ten is dominated by Wikipedia, About.com, and other well-linked and vetted sites, cracking the first page is going to take a lot longer—and may or may not be worth it.
  • “We like to organize our phrases in groups of five targeting no more than fifteen keywords per page” (19). Stoney and Jason do advise the reader to write naturally; I’m just not sure how “natural” a page targeting 15 keywords, no matter how closely related they are, can sound.

Retired Brit’s Prefer Web Surfing Over Gardening

A new poll conducted by insurance company AXA, reveals retirees in the UK spend an average of 6 hours a week online. The new addiction comes at the expense of more traditional pastimes…

Forty-one percent listed surfing the Internet among their favorite pastimes, slightly ahead of the second choices, gardening and home improvements (both 39 percent), and travel and walking (28 percent)…Their top Internet activity was e-mailing (84 percent) and looking for information (83 percent).

Booking vacations, online banking and reading news were also popular activities online.