All Blogs and News (271)

Amazon had 900 million visits Christmas 2014,  1.3 Christmas 2015, and have regularly cracked the 1 billion visitor mark every month this year (as of May 2016). Let that number sink in. That’s 3x the population of the United States. The giant of retail, Wal-Mart only has 240 million visits a month. Target? 140 million. Grainger (for you B2B manufacturers)? 7 million. And Amazon visitors are buying. Amazon holiday sales will likely be up 20-25% over Q4 last year. That’s a decade of double digit YoY holiday sales growth (in case anyone’s counting :)  And its not just the US - we see this growth in UK, Europe, and Canada.

What's their secret?  They key for any manufacturer or publisher to understand, is that Amazon’s success IS NOT simply due to the products Amazon buys and…

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Now that “the internet” has widely become considered a mature and stable sales channel, a small percentage of the more daring manufacturers and publishers are actually considering cashing out on catalogs and going “all in” online. The theory is, that customers only want to shop online and catalogs are costly and time-consuming paper weights that just end up in the old circular file.

As an online manufacturer’s rep, you might think that Yeoman would be encouraging this line of thinking. But you’d be wrong. We firmly believe that offline and online efforts need to complement each other. The question should not be "offline vs. online," but "are you where the customer wants to buy from you?"

These days, customers think of a “store” as both online and offline and will…

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Email is dead... long live email!  Here at Yeoman we handle quite a bit of email web operations for our clients as part of our Outsourced Web Operations services.  Part of that means applying our best practices to email newsletters and then tirelessly testing and tweaking our approach to maximize open rates and click-thrus.

That’s why I was tickled pink to find this infographic from Kissmetrics showing that industry research supports our key best practices for email marketing.  Some of the highlights include:

Format your emails for mobile. Not convinced you need to? Over 40% of consumers now open their emails on a device other than…

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The Yeoman team is pleased to announce the 7th update to its Website Best Practice Scorecard.  Now in it's seventh year, the scorecard let's manufacturer's and brands compare their websites against 121 Best Practices across multiple industries.

Manufacturers and publishers have a unique challenge with websites. Their sites have to combine sales, operations, marketing, support, and channel programs. These have to be organized and easy-to-follow for customers and partners. Plus they have to be 'consumer friendly' and keep up with the latest trends in devices and behavior. 

The scorecard was created by Yeoman Technology Group based on an extensive review of the top 500 websites of manufacturers, content/course providers, and publishers. This…

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E-Commerce Loves Snow Days

Snow days typically evoke cheers from kids and groans from your retail partners.  Bad driving, no foot traffic, and limited staff mean yesterday's big blizzard was likely a bust for revenue except for e-commerce.  Superstorm Juno may have crushed the malls, but it made online sales jump in almost every category.

Yeoman analyzed the "storm day" online activity and performance results of 125,000 client products across multiple markets including B2C, B2B, and Education segments.  We also analyzed performance of these items on Amazon.   The comparison was simple - how did year over year sales compare on the storm days this year versus last year. Last years days were cold but there were no major storms in the East coast.

Some of the results are pretty obvious, but there are a…

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Is Amazon Go a Go?

Amazon opened its first retail storefront on Monday, January 22. The convenience store is located at 2131 7th Ave. in Seattle, and sells grocery items, ready-to-eat meals, and quick-meal kits – and of course features items from Whole Foods, who Amazon owns.

What makes this store so unique is that there are no checkout lines. You scan the Amazon Go app on your smart phone at the door, which will open the barrier gates to allow you into the store. (No app, no entrance.) Once inside, you shop by taking an item off the shelf and placing it in your bag. The item is automatically added to the cart in your online account.

How? Hundreds of cameras around the store and weight sensors on the shelves can see and identify which products you pick up. And if you decide you do not want an item you picked up, place it back on the shelf and the technology will remove the item from your online cart.

When you’re finished, “Just Walk Out” through the gates and you’re…

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The sea of government bids is a wide, daunting space. Whether you are fishing for smaller bids with a single line, or a school of large government RFP’s, chances are you don’t have the right equipment to suit your business needs.

Yeoman Technology Group has just the right equipment for the voyage. We have a department of research experts expertly appointed to find all of the fish, big and small, that fit your business niche. We scour the seas daily for the best local, state and federal bids that translate into a bigger sales haul at the dock for you.

Think we’re telling fish stories? Contact us and we’ll…

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If AI still sounds like science fiction to you, you might be in imminent danger of falling behind the competition. But it’s not too late to get up to speed and start using AI to advance your business. If you’d like to learn more, join me as I co-host the upcoming VentureBeat webinar: “AI-powered customer engagement isn’t optional anymore,” live online on Feb 27th, or on demand after that date.
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The recovering economy may make many brands think the painful digital shift they’ve been undergoing in their channels will subside as traditional retail, wholesale, outside, and catalog sales get a lift with a stronger economy. They'd be wrong. While a stronger economy will help all sales, this recovery will likely see its biggest boost in digital channels – everything from direct sales and drop ships to social commerce and Amazon domination. There's plenty for a brand to do in 2018, but here are 5 trends you should be acting on now.
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According to a recent report put together by the Baymard Institute, an independent web research company, 67% of online shopping carts are abandoned. That means that 67% of web shoppers looked around your site, picked out one or more things they liked enough to save into a cart, and then just...didn't buy them. Why not?

 

The four main reasons online browsers don't make that online purchase include:

1. Taxes and Shipping. Shipping just bumped a $29.99 purchase up to $41.50. The total price is too much. Bye-bye, customer.

2. Buyer’s Remorse. Shopping around and putting things in your cart is a guilt-free pleasure. But once you see everything you picked out, a sense of…

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Fast Lane: Getting Product to Market

 Here are a few easy steps to get a new product to market and quick:  

  • Design an innovative product and be confident in your ability to deliver this product at some point in the “foreseeable future,” actual date not necessary.
  • Rock the marketing for said product and be sure to create a buzz. One way to accomplish this is to turn to You Tube.  Make a clever video, insert a hipster type, “Average Joe,” have him crack a few jokes, explain what your product is and hope this goes viral.
  • Now you may need some capital to manufacture your product, try crowdfunding.   Kickstarter, IndieGoGo and Tilt are a few crowdfunding programs gaining popularity.

Sounds simple right? This process is actually happening, people. Products such as Navdy,…

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Should a B2B Brand Tweet?

 Tweeting may be darlings of retail, music, and news junkies everywhere, but should it be part of a B2B manufacturers' plan?

Sometime in 2014, social networking (including micro-blogging sites like Twitter and Tumblr) quietly surpassed all other online activities, accounting for 41% of time spent online (GlobalWebIndex).

If you looked back at Twitter in 2010, they had only 105 million users and 55 million tweets per day. Twitter now boasts ”about a billion” registered users who post  500 million tweets per day.  …

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Online price discrimination?

 If you’re shopping from a Manhattan zip code or logging in with a Mac (avg. household income for Mac owners is 32% higher than Windows PC owners), Orbitz concedes that you’ll pay more for your hotel room.  Orbitz has rolled out what it calls a “predictive analytics” initiative in an attempt to increase revenues.  Indeed, it’s not hard to find examples of different people paying different prices based on their demographic checkboxes.

Orbitz isn't showing the same room to different users at different prices, but more luxurious rooms at higher prices to certain users.

The sort of targeting undertaken by Orbitz is likely to become more commonplace as online retailers scramble to identify new ways in which people’s browsing data can be used to increase online…

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As the East Coast gets pummeled by the first blizzard of the year, organizations should have shifted their Sales and Marketing spend for the next two days.  It's not just the snow plow guys who are reaping benefits of snow. Regional E-commerce sales and traffic always spike during snowstorms.

How big of a spike?  A typical snowstorm can spike regional YoY traffic by 10-25%. This storm is impacting the entire Eastern Seashore, so that could drive traffic up over 30%.  If your sales team is in tune with the weather and redirects your demand gen spend (including email, Amazon marketing, Google & Bing PPC, as well as social activity) you'll see some great year over year results.  Yesterday we saw southern ecommerce revenue spiked 20% for one US retailer.  Instore traffic was…

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Amazon Brand Registry - It's Working

In our recent blog post, Amazon Brand Registry: What You Need to Know Right Now, we covered some of the advantages of signing up for the new Amazon Brand Registry. Of course the main benefit of the brand registry is that once you prove your brand belongs to you, Amazon will help you protect it against counterfeiters and unauthorized resellers. Well, it's working.
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Yeoman is often asked by clients to help identify 'gaps' in their teams' abilities to be more digitally focused.  Most companies we work with often have great sales teams, a solid marketing group, and good business analysts but they still struggle with the best way to support their sales and distribution efforts online. 
 
Over the years, Yeoman has found most organizations have gaps in 3 key areas:
 

1. Online Product Merchandising:  The actual creation of product details online is often relegated to a junior buyer, marketing associate, (or worse) an intern. The thought of what product details will be often comes last and is rushed out as the product is shipping.  Big mistake.  Building up your internal content skills is…

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Email Operations Review List

What are you going to do that last week of December?  Many customers are taking time off and you may find yourself with some extra time to review, refresh and revamp.  A good place to start is to review systems and procedures that you typically set and forget.  If you’re not reporting and monitoring activity on those platforms on a regular basis, you may be missing out on some vital opportunities.
 
Take Email Marketing for example.  When is the last time you reviewed your email preference lists, brand lists, and workflows?  It’s common to complete the initial set-up and then assume automation is working well, but we’ve found that a quick review can often uncover some easy-to-fix problems.  
 
Here are 4 quick steps to get you…

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Shoppers often will learn about a product, retailer, or offer from a mobile ad, then visit the bricks and mortar store to complete the purchase. 

But tracking the store visit back to the ad has been a challenge for advertisers.  Placed (www.placed.com) provides a platform that measures the impact of mobile advertising campaigns in driving traffic to your stores. 

Chief Product Officer Tim Barnes said “the ability to quantify consumers' offline behavior with digital touch points will systematically transform the way media is measured.”

How do you measure the effectiveness of mobile ads to drive in-store…

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Are you ready to “wow” your customers and edge out the competition in 2018? With a dizzying array of channels and marketing tools, it can be hard to know what to focus on. We here at Yeoman recommend you focus on these 6 growing trends.
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