Jun, 2nd, 2014

10 themes from the Google Analytics Summit 2014

Google Analytics Summit 2014
As a Google Analytics Partner, we have had the privilege of spending the last two days at the 2014 Google Analytics Summit in San Francisco. What a wonderful conference it was! Although I could write much, I wanted to summarise and highlight just 10 consistent themes of the conference.

  1. Agility – Agility and speed is a weapon and some of the most important skills in business today. We must be smarter, faster and more agile.
  2. The Analytics Cycle – a) capture data, b) analyse data, c) take action. Then rinse and repeat.
  3. Universal Analytics – Migrating to Universal Analytics is an absolute necessity
  4. GTM – Implementing Google Tag Manager (GTM) is critical to success (and efficiency)
  5. Attribution – Attribution was a very strong theme throughout the whole conference and is only going to get more important. My key takeaway – if you are using ‘last click’ as your primary success metric, you are doing it wrong!
  6. Enhanced eCommerce – Google launched Enhanced eCommerce publicly at this event. It is a complete rework of the eCommerce reports and now includes fantastic visualisation and more ways to take action from your data efficiently and effectively. I have played with this, and it is cool. More info and next steps here
  7. Lets get more technical – Google Analytics API use is strongly encouraged and perhaps necessary for more advanced insights
  8. Upload offline/external data – There is an understanding that ‘web’ is only a portion of the story, to really understand your customers and their journey, you will need to upload external and offline data as well and combine.
  9. Remarketing – Remarketing should be an ‘always-on’ tactic. Is it for you?
  10. Segmentation – With all of the above, averages are pretty useless. Segmenting data is very powerful and is the best way to find gold and act according to the behaviour and needs of each segment.

There is certainly something for all of us to work on, and I am very excited by the possibilities Google Analytics will bring as they continually roll out new features. You can view the official Google Analytics blog here.

FIRST is always happy to talk through any of the above in more detail.

No responses yet

May, 26th, 2014

Optimizely technical tips

Published by under General

Install Optimizely snippet into your website

Optimizely officially recommends installing the Optimizely Snippet as high up in the head tag as possible. Add the Optimizely Snippet before the code for any analytics or heatmapping platforms as well.

Sample code:
<!DOCTYPE html>
<html lang=”en”>
<script src=”//cdn.optimizely.com/js/xxxxxxx.js”></script>

However, there are a few exceptions that you need to be aware of.

  1. If you use jQuery 1.6.4 or later 

Optimizely includes jQuery 1.6.4 by default but your project may need a newer version of jQuery. In that case, you may not want to make your visitors download it twice.

You can use Optimizely with your own copy of jQuery by loading it before Optimizely on the page.

Sample code:
<!DOCTYPE html>
<html lang=”en”>
// load jQuery first
<script src=”http://code.jquery.com/jquery.js”></script>
// then, load Optimizely
<script src=”//cdn.optimizely.com/js/xxxxxxx.js”></script>


And on your Project Dashboard, click Project Settings > jQuery Settings. Then, select the: Do not include jQuery option.


  1. If you use legacy Google Analytics

Depending on your _setDomainName configuration you may experience inflated ‘% New Sessions’ and ‘Visit Duration’ metrics inside your Google Analytics reports. If this is the case, you need to use _setDomainName without the leading period or make sure the Optimizely Snippet comes after _setDomainName call but before the _trackPageview call.

Sample code:

<!DOCTYPE html>

<html lang=”en”>


<script type=”text/javascript”>

// <![CDATA[

var _gaq = _gaq || [];

_gaq.push(['_setAccount', 'UA-xxxxxx-x']);

_gaq.push(['_setDomainName', 'none']);

_gaq.push(['_setAllowHash', false]);

_gaq.push(['_setAllowLinker', true]);

// ]]>



// load Optimizely after_setDomainName

<script src=”//cdn.optimizely.com/js/xxxxxxx.js”></script>


<script type=”text/javascript”>

// <![CDATA[


// ]]>





Preview the variation

Optimizely provides a great preview function. This preview function allows you to view all variations in the experiment. If you simply want to check to load a particular variation of your experiment on a live page on your site across different browsers, this method is easier to use.

http://your-website.com?optimizely_x[Experiment ID]=[Variation ID]

[Experiment ID] is the ID of the experiment which can be found from the Optimizely Editor URL when editing the experiment

[Variation ID] stands for the variation tab number, where the original equals 0, #1 equals 1

This optimizely_x force parameter will skip all audience and URL targeting conditions. This will tell Optimizely to blindly run the variation code for that specified experiment’s variation.


Global CSS

Optimizely has Global CSS feature, but please note that changes made here will apply to all variations in the experiment, including the original.

Optimizely Global CSS
To apply Global CSS only to a specific variation then you can use the following method instead:

$(‘head’).append(‘<style type=”text/css”>insert your CSS here</style>’);

Dealing with Ajax

If your website loads content using Ajax then you need to take care when using the Optimizely Editor. Optimizely does not work with Ajax content by default and what you see in the Editor is the fully loaded content.

In this case, you need to use one of the following methods to apply changes on your live website:

  1. Use ajaxComplete method

window.$(document).ajaxComplete (function () {

// your code here


  1. Run Optimizely code after xx seconds

window.myInterval = setInterval(function() {

// your code here

}, xx);

Make sure you test well with Ajax on Optimizely.

No responses yet

May, 26th, 2014

30 key insights on email, lead gen and data

Email, lead generation and data process diagram
Here is our list of key insights on email, lead generation and data.

  1. Email subject lines may take on a whole new level of importance: Assuming the email made it into the Gmail user’s Priority Inbox, Google may choose to display it alongside search results pages. (Source: imediaconnection.com)
  2. Why do you think men’s fashion eCommerce retailer Bonobos sent their entire database an email urging their customers to move Bonobos to the primary inbox in Gmail’s new interface? Firstly, because they understand that email is a key revenue driver. Secondly, maximum email channel revenue starts with a great open rate! (Source: ryanspoon.com)
  3. 51% of all emails were opened on a mobile device in 2013 [infographic]: 26% on iPhone, 12% on iPad and 12% Android (Windows and others at <1%). (Source: getpocket.com)
  4. Only 15% of companies have tested their email marketing templates on mobile devices (Marketo). Given mobile opens are set to surpass desktop this year, make this a priority! (Source: marketingtechblog.com)
  5. If the 20% of your loyal customers account for 80% of your revenue, how much emphasis should be placed on your email channel? Will you require more robust data analysis and decision support to evaluate this increased focus? (Source: marketingprofs.com)
  6. Custora reports that the lifetime value of a customer acquired through email is 11% more than one acquired via Facebook or banner advertising. (Source: blog.3di.co.nz)
  7. “Don’t miss” in an email subject line has a 40% better chance of attracting a click compared to the average B2B email (Adestra subject line analysis report 2013). (Source: marketingprofs.com)
  8. According to Experian, average order $ value from Email has increased 14.4% comparing 1Q12 to 1Q13 (across all Experian clients at the time). (Source: marketingprofs.com)
  9. Email database quality is still the biggest challenge facing email marketing (Econsultancy). Perhaps it’s time for marketers to trial alternative data acquisition methodologies: Co-reg is a great way to build opt-in email lists quickly and cost-effectively. (Source: exacttarget.com)
  10. Useful collection of email stats by industry: Click through rates (unique clicks / delivered) and open rate. Retail is second highest on open rates but fails to convert the click (Silverpop). (Source: econsultancy.com)
  11. 41% of commercial emails were opened on mobile devices for Q3/Q4 2012 (33% on iOS) – mobile is on track to surpass desktop this year. (Source: marketingprofs.com)
  12. Email is the key lever to drive repeat purchase. (Source: litmus.com)
  13. Yes, general browser usage stats show Chrome and Safari growing fast (and IE and Firefox dying) but at 51% usage, Internet Explorer is still the browser of (forced) choice for checking web-based email – likely due to workplace IT lock-down. (Source: litmus.com)
  14. 36% of emails are now opened on a mobile device: This infographic is a good rundown of Responsive vs Scalable mobile email design. (Source: marketingtechblog.com)
  15. With 43% of all email opens occurring on a mobile device, it’s important to understand how your email will look when opened on one. View the infographic to see specifics for the iPhone 5, Galaxy Note II, Nexus 4, Lumina 920 and the BlackBerry Bold 9900. (Source: litmus.com)
  16. Are your customers helping you generate more leads? – If you need a good case study of incentivised referral marketing done well, look no further than Dropbox. (Source: blog.kissmetrics.com)
  17. NZ’s first case study on lead-gen optimisation: Lead source websites that exist to provide a service other than lead gen in the first instance provide the best returns. Expertise is required to leverage this fact, maximising lead volumes and optimising for quality across multiple lead sources (metric: advertiser conversion rate and/or $ rev generated). (Source: blog.3di.co.nz)
  18. Tactic #5 to acquire new customers: Double loop referrals. (Source: moz.com)
  19. Low cost and measurability mean email is still the #1 (B2C) prospecting channel. (Source: getpocket.com)
  20. Email marketing is still rated the #1 tactic for effective lead gen for 51% of B2B marketers (n=435, Ascend2/Research Underwriters). (Source: emarketer.com)
  21. Nice summary on why Dropbox has been so successful, in part because they have created a user experience that people love: Everything is super easy, trust is built and before long there exists product dependency. Paying for the service becomes a consumer necessity. (Source: blog.kissmetrics.com)
  22. What are you really doing to keep your eCommerce customers buying? Remember: “Repeat shoppers, representing just 8 percent of all site visitors, accounted for nearly 41 percent of total online sales” (Adobe 2012, US). (Source: practicalecommerce.com)
  23. Much like other data providers with access to offline transactional data, Datalogix is positioned very well indeed. (Source: techcrunch.com)
  24. Nice decision-making flowchart to help find the most suitable way of presenting information in the form of an infographic. (Source: econsultancy.com)
  25. The measurement of B2B content marketing should focus on the end goal: Did you engage the people that matter, and did they fill in the lead capture form. “Instead of thinking of content as a means to fill all channels, where analytics just show how each channel is performing, you should measure who viewed your content”. (Source: venturebeat.com)
  26. AdWords Enhanced Campaigns now support campaign scheduling for call extensions. Good news for B2B lead gen. (Source: searchengineland.com)
  27. How to use Facebook’s Graph Search for intelligence gathering and B2B prospecting. (Source: siegemedia.com)
  28. “Nearly 50 percent of marketers agree that data is the most underutilized asset in their organization, with less than 10 percent saying they currently use what data they have in a systematic way” (Teradata, n=2,200). (Source: teradata.com)
  29. A scary stat given the multitude of targeting technologies on the market today: “Only about one-third of [B2B] marketers are incorporating targeting and segmentation in their digital advertising” (n=243, US). (Source: marketingprofs.com)
  30. Good reminder on data risk: The media and retail industries are reporting the highest incident rates for hacking. And for insurance most data loss occurs due to fraud/social engineering (KPMG). (Source: blogs.hbr.org)

No responses yet

May, 21st, 2014

Google Panda 4.0 update: good news for small business?

Google’s Panda update was first introduced in February 2011 to improve the quality of search results for their users to include more relevant and authoritative websites. There have been several updates since its launch to further improve this.

Today in USA, Matt Cutts announced on Twitter that Google has rolled out 4.0 version of Google Panda Algorithm.

Matt Cutts on Twitter announcing Panda 4.0 update

Is there good news for small business?

Not many details about Google Panda 4.0 update has been released yet.  However, Matt Cutts announced at Search Marketing Expo in March 2014 that his team is working on the “next generation” softer Panda update that should directly impact to help small businesses do better in the search results.

This would not be the first time that Google is softening the Panda update; they did soften the algorithm in their July 2013 Panda update as well.

Let’s wait and see what changes this new update has to bring for small businesses. We can expect more visibility in search results for small businesses in local results.

How Google Panda affected small businesses

Specifically, Google Panda filtered the low-quality websites with little or poor content. It was designed to tackle content farms that were being used to manipulate search rankings for a website in Google. As a side effect of this update, many small businesses were caught and lost their search visibility to big brands overnight, which created a big buzz in small business & SEO communities.

Some quotes by people at savingsmallbusiness.org

Getting hit by Panda is like having your business burned down, only in the real world you can rebuild. With Panda, there’s no coming back. Your business has been nuked.

I can remember my first weekend after Panda annihilated my site of 6 years… a site that I had put my blood, sweat, and tears into. At the time Panda hit my first child was less than a month old and it seemed as if my world was falling apart.

Small businesses complaining on Google's webmaster forum

10 tips on improving your website rankings

  • Write high quality original content for your website
  • Keep design and navigation of the website clean & well-structured
  • Don’t stuff keywords for the sake of rankings, build websites for users
  • Keep META data unique and relevant to the pages across whole website
  • Post fresh quality content on your website (blogposts)
  • Have the website properly geo-targeted to your targeted location
  • Don’t let ads takeover your content on the website
  • Don’t use any black-hat SEO tactics i.e. low quality links, content farms, etc.
  • Focus on a great content strategy that gets you natural links from authority websites
  • Increase your social media efforts, Google consider this as a strong signal that your content is high quality

Hopefully, this new Google Panda update will bring good news for small businesses/websites and help them get the leverage from Google search engine.

No responses yet

May, 19th, 2014

49 key insights on digital trends and future tech

Future tech and digital trends process diagram
Here is our list of key insights on digital trends and future technology.

  1. Digital budgets up, understanding goes down of how digital drives profits. Back in 2010 Econsultancy found that 67% of companies rated themselves as “good” / “very good” assessing ROI. In 2013 that figure has dropped to 50%. (Source: forbes.com)
  2. As you ponder Gartner’s digital marketing transit map, think about how your organisation is bringing these neighbourhoods together, and the important role you play to make this happen! (Source: chiefmartec.com)
  3. Marketo/Altimeter Group – Jeremiah Owyang on the future of digital marketing: Paid, Owned, and Earned is converging into one single form of media. Couple of nice case studies. (Source: slideshare.net)
  4. Great customer experiences drive loyalty; here are 4 reasons why this matters: “Longer customer tenure, increased purchase value, relationships that are more efficient to serve, and more referrals which drive additional sales”. (Source: econsultancy.com)
  5. Two key aspects of agile marketing: #1 Testing and data over opinions and conventions. #2 Many small experiments over a few large bets. (Source: chiefmartec.com)
  6. Google Compute Engine vs Amazon EC2: Inter-regional file copy delivered at avg 15 Mbit/s on AWS, but took just 15 seconds on GCE (avg 300 Mbit/s). (Source: gigaom.com)
  7. Yes to agile marketing but don’t forget quality altogether: “It comes back to finding the right balance between super-slow perfectionism and super-fast sloppiness”. (Source: chiefmartec.com)
  8. We cannot help but wonder whilst ideas from discussion papers on Quantified/Sensored Self seem a distant possibility from “everyday normal living” right at this moment, in all but a few short years we will have moved very quickly to a new norm of accepted self monitoring (and sharing). – Continuous sharing of biometrics = real-time increase in life insurance premiums..? (Source: blogs.gartner.com)
  9. Two insights on agile marketing from HubSpot’s CEO: #1 It makes the marketing function more transparent. #2 Agile marketing manages activity, not performance (that’s done at a level above the execution of tasks). (Source: chiefmartec.com)
  10. Forrester/BMA: “Marketing must do things that it hasn’t done ever before to be successful” (n=117). (Source:chiefmartec.com)
  11. The most frustrating marketing analytics challenge? Acting on data to improve marketing performance (n=242, 2012). (Source: bufferapp.com)
  12. Nice, but what the report fails to mention is NZ’s disproportionally high budget allocation to traditional channels, when compared with AU. Still a lot of room for growth for digital. (Source: econsultancy.com)
  13. The end of competitive advantage? From IBM’s C-level Exec global survey (n=4,183): “CEOs now expect that new competition is as likely to come from other industries as it is their own”. (Source: chiefmartec.com)
  14. Real-world analytics that provides insight into pedestrian volume, allows for time-of-day analysis and gives retailers an associated “opportunity score”. Nice. (Source: cre-apps.com)
  15. eMarketer (US) is predicting that time spent on non-voice mobile activities will surpass time spent online on desktop/laptop computers for the first time this year. (Source: emarketer.com)
  16. 2018, the year mobile overtakes desktop ad spend? We’d certainly agree that “time spent engaging with advertising content on desktops is declining”. (Source: marketingland.com)
  17. mCom retail sales to represent 25% of total eCom by 2017, tablet share to make up 72% of this (US, eMarketer). (Source: orbitalalliance.com)
  18. eMarketer (US): “By 2017, 29.7% of all digital video ad spending will go toward mobile ads (including ads served to tablet devices)”. (Source: emarketer.com)
  19. 2013 Global Marketing Effectiveness Tracker (n=1,200): “78% of CEOs around the world believe Ad & Media Agencies are not performance-driven enough and do not focus enough on helping to generate the (real and P&L-quantifiable) business results they expect their Marketing departments to deliver” (The Fournaise Marketing Group). (Source: fournaisegroup.com)
  20. The principle of fair use has been upheld in the Google book scanning lawsuit (started 2005), substantiation being: “The crucial point is whether the use to which Google is putting these copyrighted works qualifies as ‘transformative’ – in the sense that it adds value or uses the work in a different and beneficial way. The judge decided that it clearly does this”. (Source: gigaom.com)
  21. “Most marketers create digital billboards and bumper stickers that are ineffective at getting the message across. Those that segment groups, target them effectively, and use digital tools and techniques to deliver a message of value at the right time will emerge as the winners” (Also called ‘Search’…). (Source: cmo.com)
  22. Google Trends now available for YouTube Search. Just as well, given YouTube has now surpassed the 1 billion monthly user mark. (Source: toprankblog.com)
  23. Google China <5% market share, Alibaba.com’s Aliyun will mean even more fragmentation. (Source: searchengineland.com)
  24. Most banking customers prefer to go online to learn about new products and services (Gallup, US). Are you dedicating sufficiently large budgets to the digital channel to maximise this opportunity..? (Source: businessjournal.gallup.com)
  25. HBR – When people are the channel itself, the rules change: “Top marketers know that they can’t put one over on the customer, nor can they control the message or their customer’s behaviour. It takes humility, appreciation, and an orientation towards openness and inclusion”. (Source: blogs.hbr.org)
  26. Forrester is probably right. Google does have the broadest set of affinity data (most varied by source): Spending time (YouTube), connections/sharing/liking (Gmail, G+) and let’s not forget the actual search index itself…(Source: venturebeat.com)
  27. Apparently Facebook Home’s “people first” OS experience has been available on Windows Phone for years. Unfortunately, that’s a bit of a moot point. (Source: marketingland.com)
  28. 81% of Inc. 500 now use LinkedIn, up from 73% a year earlier (n=170), though the survey does not define specifically what is meant by “use”. (Source: marketingprofs.com)
  29. Rapid (and agile) response marketing: Some great examples of reactionary campaigns. (Source: econsultancy.com)
  30. Digital ad spend to overtake newspapers in 2016? We’re predicting July 2015. (Source: stoppress.co.nz)
  31. The future of quantified self likely accelerated by implanted and ingestible technologies, with possibly far-reaching commercial consequences? – “Hi this is Sovereign. Let us monitor your body and we’ll give you a lower premium on your life insurance”. (Source: thenextweb.com)
  32. Consumer TV viewing habits are changing rapidly: “iTunes users have downloaded more than one billion TV episodes and 380 million movies from iTunes to date”. (Source: apple.com)
  33. eMarketer – In 2012 Australians spent an average of US$3,547 per person (who bought online) – the highest per person in the world and 54% more than the US. That is pretty good going really. (Source: marketingmag.com.au)
  34. Newspapers continue to struggle turning traditional advertising dollars into digital dollars: “In 2012, approximately $16 in print revenue was lost for every $1 in digital revenue” (up from $11 in 2011, Pew Research Centre). (Source: paidcontent.org)
  35. Congrats to Luke, Guy and the entire Torpedo7 team – May you always conduct your business in true entrepreneurial style! (Source: idealog.co.nz)
  36. APAC registering the strongest improvement in outlook in Global Marketing Index (n=1,225). (Source: marketingprofs.com)
  37. Fascinating to see what factors are affecting the value of Bitcoin. (Source: venturebeat.com)
  38. Skype is not slowing down: “Skype’s increase of nearly 51 billion minutes in 2012 is more than twice that achieved by all international carriers in the world, combined”. (Source: gigaom.com)
  39. Google’s user base, along with PayPal’s (?), will likely be the reason YubiKey Neo / U2F will gain widespread acceptance. (Source: forbes.com)
  40. We’re excited: Amazon has announced 30-minute delivery times using drones, subject to FAA approval. What could possibly go wrong. (Source: amazon.com)
  41. Choice, control, charm, connectedness and calibration (measurement) – Five core ideas that are shaping the future of advertising (Google / ad:tech). (Source: forbes.com)
  42. “The Drag and Drop utility provides users with an agile mechanism for engineering DNA” – The ultimate goal? Creating a marketplace for synthetic DNA. (Source: genomecompiler.com)
  43. The Apple unofficial official PR machine is in full swing. It better have biometric data. (Source: venturebeat.com)
  44. We’re quietly excited about The Internet of Things. Take ReelyActive’s cost-effective RFID solution, for example: “They have taken some of the smarts out, simplified the receivers, and moved the intelligence to the cloud.” (Source: venturebeat.com)
  45. Ok so Apple is working on iWatch, what other wearable computing will we be seeing in the near future? Interesting to read Google hoping for Glass to drive 3% of revenue by 2015. (Source: bits.blogs.nytimes.com)
  46. Interesting – Apple has hired Yves Saint Laurent’s CEO to head its special projects. (Source: networkworld.com)
  47. Google has acquired engineering company Boston Dynamics, which designed mobile research robots for the Pentagon. Just in time for the reboot of the Terminator franchise…? – But seriously, this is exciting from the perspective of robotics gaining accelerated funding and consumer-minded focus. (Source: nytimes.com)
  48. Content provider fragmentation prevails for consumers even for “pure-play” digital providers: As we’ve thought about this, there isn’t really one “box” as yet that gives you Netflix, Amazon Prime, YouTube (and HBO) “native” and all on the same box? (Chromecast – sort of?). (Source: venturebeat.com)
  49. Heard the term “API” thrown around but you never quite figured out what that actually is? Here’s a good explanation, and why it’s important. (Source: blog.compete.com)


No responses yet

« Prev - Next »

© 2015 FIRST, part of the BeyondD Digital Marketing Group a wholly owned subsidiary of Beyond International.