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Omniture & comScore Join Forces for Good Measure!

It seems that getting itself acquired by Adobe isn’t enough to keep the web analytics giant Omniture busy. It has announced today that it will partner with the Boy That Cried Wolf comScore to unify online audience metrics.

Joking aside, it looks like a peanut butter/chocolate moment for the world of online audience measurement. The partnership will see comScore combine the data it gets from a 2 million person global panel with Omniture’s–raise pinky to side of mouth–1 trillion quarterly web site transactions. According to the announcement:

This strategic partner relationship blends these two methodologies in a highly automated way to create a unified approach for audience measurement designed to enable publishers to represent themselves in a more comprehensive manner to advertisers, and for advertisers to better optimize their media planning with the benefit of more extensive media reach data.

Bing Cashback Goes Big

Admit it: when you first heard about Microsoft Live’s cashback promotion, you thought it was a kooky idea that wouldn’t last long. Announced in May 2008, the program offered to share revenue from Microsoft’s shopping partners with you, the buyer. At the time, we said it sounded like a last-ditch attempt to buy our loyalty.

But over the last year, cashback has surprised us a bit—and not just by sticking around. In October and November, the service was showing an increase in traffic, sales and revenue for participating partners. Still, the promotion didn’t really help them in overall traffic, and seemed like mostly an afterthought—until now. Check out the latest Bing commercial:

The newest addition to Bing’s marketing blitz touts the cashback program.

Shopping Down, But Online Research Up

Econsultancy has the results of a survey by Channel Advisor (PDF) on online shopping in the US. The semi-annual survey shows that online shopping is down overall—but there is some good news for the Internet.

Spending online shopping is down overall, with fewer people reporting monthly purchases of over $76 (down by 9% to 25%), and more people reporting monthly spending of $0-$20 (up by 11%, now at 27%). However, they’re devoting more of their time online to product research—with growth in shopping search queries and time spent on retail sites. 51% were influenced by product reviews or ratings, but free shipping was most influential in purchase decisions.


Internet Fraud is Internet Fraud, Right?

fraudAs online marketers most are concerned about click fraud. The endless battle to make sure that when you are buying a click it’s a real click and not something else. Marketers lose sleep over this every night but ht economy may have created a whole other category of fraud called “friendly fraud”.

First, I am not sure where we are headed when we can call fraud “friendly fraud” like we find in an article over at the Wall Street Journal. Sounds too much like “friendly fire” and there is nothing friendly about that. So what exactly is it? According to the article

Online merchants are fighting a surge in so-called friendly fraud, as more consumers try to get out of paying for their Internet purchases in the recession.

Online Sales Up in the US for Some

In a report from eMarketer there is a mixed bag of news for onlineshopping-bag sales from Q1. The study that was done by Forrester Research and shows an overall increase in online sales of 11%. Nice number for sure considering the daily doom and gloom that seems to dominate the economic news of most days.

Digging into the findings just a bit reveals how that increase is not something that appears to be felt across the board. Overall, 58% of those using the online sales channel experienced an increase in sales. When you put it that way it seems to say that the increase may be more a result of some areas showing bigger increases which were offset other poor performers. The chart below reveals the weak spot.

Classic Battle for eBook Reader Market

While Amazon makes the big splash with Kindle 2 and fends off potential lawsuit regarding its technology, sony-ereaderSony has cut a deal with Google that is a classic.

As reported at cnet, in a partnership with Sony, Google will provide over 500,000 titles whose copyrights have expired which include literary classics like “Sense and Sensibility” and “A Connecticut Yankee in King Arthur’s Court”. This move takes the number of titles to that the Sony offering has to 600,000 vs. the 250,000 for the Amazon offering. These include German, French, Spanish, Italian and other language translations as well.

SEO, Usability & 15 Stupid Things You Can Do to Your Website – SMX West

Michael Stebbins—Market Motive

Whilst not technically a session I was fortunate enough to hear Michael Stebbins of Market Motive present a little mini-presentation in the Expo hall, which grabbed a lot of people’s attention. I was away from my laptop but managed to type up notes on my iPhone.


His presentation was titled: 15 stupid things you can do to your website:

1. Using lots of JavaScript menus so search engines can’t crawl your website properly.

2. Using stupid keywords—ones that are too competitive or no one is searching for. Michael suggested picking mid-range keywords and work your way up.