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The top ways web behavior shifted in 2015

Getting your marketing game on point this year requires an understanding of what happened last year. Let’s talk about how web behavior shifted in 2015 to do just that.

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Ch-Ch-Changes: How Web Behavior Changed in 2015

The old adage “Tune in and Turn on” was never truer than in 2015. There was more to choose from on the digital landscape than ever before. Throughout 2015 individuals were/are looking for relevant communication that relates directly to their needs. Doesn’t matter if they are searching for a product or service.

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The fact is, the increasing number of available media channels has created a wider palette for consumers but complications for marketers who long ago gave up sleep while trying to determine when, and where, their customer is located. A scary scenario to be sure, but also an exciting one because if marketers can crack the users code there is gold to found at the end of the rainbow.

Changes in attitudes

An graphic from social sharing and analytics provider addthis.com provides insights into the shifting behaviors of internet users in 2015. And despite evidence that the smartphone market is slowing, it seems mobile is still taking over.

According to addthis.com, mobile now accounts for more than half of all internet users worldwide. Don’t worry, there are still plenty of countries, the U.S. included, where people still use a desktop/laptop computer. The most social sharing still happens on desktop devices but mobile use continues to creep up with a 32 percent increase over 2014 data.

The big question

Marketingland.com points out that “understanding how, why and when your customers engage with certain channels will lead to a better communication and customer experience [and ultimately more sales].”

Regarding a shift in internet use behavior, consumers own more connected devices than ever, with more than 70% of connected consumers indicating that they personally use three or more devices. And it’s not just the devices that are multiplying; it is also the time spent engaging with content across screens.

According to emarketer.com, time spent with digital media has leaped to 5 hours and 38 minutes a day, with 2 hours and 51 minutes of that time being spent on mobile This is due to the fact that consumers take their devices with them and engage on and off throughout the day and night.

With the rise of the mobile “everything” (communication, payment options, digital wallets, etc) the Internet is not only a font of information, but a simple and easy point of purchase. As consumers continue to drive the digital shift forward, the rest of the sales and marketing landscaping must fight to keep up.

#WebBehavior

Nearly three decades living and working all over the world as a radio and television broadcast journalist in the United States Air Force, Staff Writer, Gary Picariello is now retired from the military and is focused on his writing career.

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2 Comments

2 Comments

  1. Kyle

    January 19, 2016 at 1:07 pm

    I’ve been running into shocking anecdotal mobile use cases going back to early 2015. For instance, I spoke with a car dealer who has lots spread across the Ft. Worth area, and he said that his rural store was almost 100% mobile search. As I dug into that, it turns out that lower income people will choose a phone plan with a highly functional smartphone and forgo an upgraded desktop because of cost.

    Verticals are important, too. Those that are “Yelp-dependent” trend very high with smartphone use, for instance. I’ve talked to several hair salons in 2015, and their experience reflects this perfectly.

    The reason I point this out is because I see and hear the “more than half of all search is mobile” stat quoted almost uniformly, and I think small business owners can miss just how dominant mobile search could be in their demo. While it’s true that more than half of all search is mobile, they could be missing a lot of business by thinking “well, at least I’ll get half of the remaining search traffic”.

  2. Cindy Allen

    January 21, 2016 at 8:08 pm

    I started to read this article as a business owner but found myself quickly falling into “Mom” mode when I saw the stat from emarketer.com stating 5.5 hour per day spent on digital media. That’s equivalent to a full time job each week… “Tune in and turn on”? I wonder how much of it is that, verses “turn on and tune out”. Guess I’m getting old and starting to sound like my mother. Sorry to interrupt. You may go back to your device now.

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Tech News

4 ways startups prove their investment in upcoming technology trends

(TECH NEWS) Want to see into the future? Just take a look at what technology the tech field is exploring and investing in today — that’s the stuff that will make up the world of tomorrow.

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Woman testing VR technology

Big companies scout like for small ones that have proven ideas and prototypes, rather than take the initial risk on themselves. So startups have to stay ahead of technology by their very nature, in order to be stand-out candidates when selling their ideas to investors.

Innovation Leader, in partnership with KPMG LLP, recently conducted a study that sheds light onto the bleeding edge of tech: The technologies that the biggest companies are most interested in building right now.

The study asked its respondents to group 16 technologies into four categorical buckets, which Innovation Leader CEO Scott Kirsner refers to as “commitment level.”

The highest commitment level, “in-market or accelerating investment,” basically means that technology is already mainstream. For optimum tech-clairvoyance, keep your eyes on the technologies which land in the middle of the ranking.

“Investing or piloting” represents the second-highest commitment level – that means they have offerings that are approaching market-readiness.

The standout in this category is Advanced Analytics. That’s a pretty vague title, but it generally refers to the automated interpretation and prediction on data sets, and has overlap with Machine learning.

Wearables, on the other hand, are self explanatory. From smart watches to location trackers for children, these devices often pick up on input from the body, such heart rate.

The “Internet of Things” is finding new and improved ways to embed sensor and network capabilities into objects within the home, the workplace, and the world at large. (Hopefully that doesn’t mean anyone’s out there trying to reinvent Juicero, though.)

Collaboration tools and cloud computing also land on this list. That’s no shock, given the continuous pandemic.

The next tier is “learning and exploring”— that represents lower commitment, but a high level of curiosity. These technologies will take a longer time to become common, but only because they have an abundance of unexplored potential.

Blockchain was the highest ranked under this category. Not surprising, considering it’s the OG of making people go “wait, what?”

Augmented & virtual reality has been hyped up particularly hard recently and is in high demand (again, due to the pandemic forcing us to seek new ways to interact without human contact.)

And notably, AI & machine learning appears on rankings for both second and third commitment levels, indicating it’s possibly in transition between these categories.

The lowest level is “not exploring or investing,” which represents little to no interest.

Quantum computing is the standout selection for this category of technology. But there’s reason to believe that it, too, is just waiting for the right breakthroughs to happen.

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Will AI take over copywriting roles? This tool hopes to make that a reality

(TECH NEWS) CopyAI hopes to give copywriters a run for their… well, WPM. But how much can AI fully replace copywriting skills?

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Hands typing on a laptop, working on copywriting piece.

Copywriting is an important trade. Writers are often able to breathe life into otherwise formulaic websites peddling products which, sans the copy from those writers, might very well suffer a fate of relative obscurity. However, copywriters are also expensive, and their duties—indispensable as they may be—can be replicated fairly easily by little more than basic machine learning.

The question is this: Can AI replace copywriters? That’s a question that CopyAI hopes to answer with a resounding “yes”.

CopyAI is an “AI powered [sic] assistant for writing and brainstorming marketing copy.” This makes it a powerful tool to complement human writing, at the very least; is it enough to put people like me out of a job?

From my experience with the tool, no—at least, not yet. CopyAI can’t create an engagement strategy, respond to customers, spin testimonials to evoke heart-felt reactions, or analyze its own trends.

But that doesn’t detract from how freaking cool it is in practice.

CopyAI asks for very little from its user. Upon selecting a style of copy—Facebook Market, website carousel, or even page header, for example–you are prompted to enter the title of your product and a couple of short sentences describing it in the context of your ad. CopyAI does the rest, and while the results can be hilariously out of touch, you’re able to pick the ones that sound the most like your desired copy and then generate more options that sound similar.

The service has a huge number of different options for advertisement types, and you can use multiple different copy projects in one specific campaign.

Naturally, CopyAI has a few flaws, most of which replicate the problems we’ve seen with machine learning-based writing in the past: It doesn’t sound quite human enough to be comfortable. However, that’s a problem for a skilled copywriter to solve—and quickly, thus making something like CopyAI a potentially preferable choice for mass copywriting.

So, again, we ask: Is there a way for CopyAI to replace copywriters entirely in the future? Probably not. The copy it produces is intriguing, and often close enough that underfunded campaigns might find some value in using it short-term, but it doesn’t have the punch that a real person can pack into an advertisement.

That said, combining CopyAI with a small team of copywriters to reduce burnout—and repetition—could make for some very efficient work on the back end.

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UX design: If you don’t have it, get yourself an audit made easy

(TECH NEWS) UX design is important. By conducting a simple audit to make sure your site is accessible, you can minimize the number of people that quickly go away.

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Two UX design people standing in front of a whiteboard with a UX map.

A good UX design is essential in attracting and retaining customers. A seamless and positive experience will keep customers happy and bring your business many benefits, like increasing audience engagement and sales.

But, how do you know if your user experience is in need of help, so people don’t bounce away quickly? Well, if UX is not your forte, the best thing to do is to hire a good UX designer. Unfortunately, sometimes hiring one isn’t always within the budget.

So, what do you do then? The next best thing is to conduct a UX audit of your website or app. Not sure where to begin? Fulcrum’s Do It Yourself UX Audit kit is one place to start.

According to the website, this DIY UX audit “can help you gain valuable insights about the usability of your product.” The tool detects problems in your UX, prioritizes them for you, and finds out how you can fix any existing issues.

The tool is made out of free easy-to-use Notion templates. These UX audit checklists are all customizable, and you can print them or save them on your Notion dashboard to use later.

Inside each template, there are cards with descriptions and examples. Depending on if you meet certain criteria or not, you drag and drop the card into the “Yes” or “No” column. When you’re finished, you will easily see what issues you have, and you can work on fixing them.

The templates are divided into Junior and Middle-level templates.

The Junior level has templates for things such as field and forms, login, mobile UX, and architecture. Most of these templates help make sure you cover your basic UX bases. For instance, it looks at whether your website is desktop and mobile-friendly, and if each element makes sense and is easily identifiable.

The Middle Level dives in a little deeper. The “Visibility of system status” audit checks if you are keeping your audience informed on what’s going on. Things like battery life, loading, or Wi-Fi connection indicators can make a huge difference. No one wants to stare at a screen with no clue if what they clicked on is working or not.

If you can afford it and want a UX virtuoso to do the work for you, you can get a UX audit from Fulcrum. The experts will conduct a full-fledged UX audit and create wireframes with solutions for your UX issues.

However, no matter how you go about it, a good UX design is important. Higher rate conversions and user retention won’t happen if your product is just pushing people away.

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