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Web Experience News & Analysis

Are You Following the Money in Digital Analytics?

2014-11-august-money-go-round.jpg

As someone who has been involved in digital — web — analytics since it was an early practice in 1996, I’ve always been acutely aware of the challenge of mapping metrics or analyses to real world measures such as revenue or cost savings.

And I’ve always contended that you need to think in these terms if you want the analysis of your digital channel to be relevant to your organizations.

I took this so far as to open my 2005 book, The Executive’s Guide to Web Site Measurement and Testing with this: Money makes the web-go-round.

The 'Scoop' on Content as a Service

web CMS, 2014-11-August-Ice-Cream.jpgWhen was the last time you heard of a company using its content management system as a recruiting tool? Never? Well last month the New York Times made a splash providing an overview of its custom-built content management system called Scoop. One of the inspirations of this post was that a prominent editor for competitor Washington Post, Ezra Klein, announced that the reason he was leaving the Post for Vox Media was because -- ready for this -- of how fancy its web content management system was. As Klein said in the article: “at our first meeting, we knew we were going here. They had the technology we thought we were inventing.”

Yahoo Tech's David Pogue: You Gotta Be Authentic

Connecting with Bill Sobel

David Pogue thinks science, technology, language and humor go together quite well. "That’s been my experience, anyway, in my years writing columns, presenting science and tech on TV, creating how-to books and doing a lot of public speaking," he explains on his website.

Pogue, the former personal technology columnist for the New York Times, is the founder of Yahoo Tech — a "consumer-technology website for normal people."

He’s also a monthly columnist for Scientific American, host of science shows on PBS’s “NOVA” and a correspondent on the CBS News Sunday Morning.

In his spare time, he authored four titles in the For Dummies series of books and teamed up with O'Reilly Media to launch Pogue Press, the company that creates the Missing Manual books. If you haven't heard of the Missing Manuals, they're a series of "warm, witty and jargon free" manuals for popular consumer software and hardware products … the "books that should have been in the box."

Week in Review: End of the Mobile App + Big Data, Big Insights

Goodbye Mobile Apps?
The mobile and web applications space will see a dramatic shift in how things are designed and built.

Meet the Empowered CMO 
The age of the customer may also turn out to be the age of the chief marketing officer.

Take that, Google 
Where last week Google Docs got better at collaborating, Microsoft this week made key upgrades to Office for the iPad.

Strength in Silos
Work silos, when bridged, can actually bring us enterprise fortune

EMC, Documentum Shakeup?
What happens to Documentum if Elliott Management breaks up EMC?

Show Me the Insights
So we’ve got the big data and the interest in it. What’s the problem? 

Understand the 3 Stages of Digital Marketing Maturity
How modern marketing organizations should operate at each stage
Download Now

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What Customers Want from Contact Centers - and How to Deliver It

When speaking with a customer service agent on the phone, most customers want swift, accurate answers and a human experience. These are the findings of a new online survey conducted by Harris Poll on behalf of NICE.

According to the poll, 59 percent of respondents say they most value having issues resolved efficiently and correctly when contacting a company via phone. The poll also uncovered that 23 percent of customers would rather have a real conversation with a person rather than listening to an agent reciting a script.

Surprisingly, being put on hold and waiting to transfer to another representative were of significantly less importance, with 6 percent citing hold time as most important, and 3 percent citing transfers – as long as the customer received a quick, correct answer to their problem.

In short, the survey reveals that what customers really want from your contact center is excellent customer service – and they want it fast.

Cyber Criminals in Russia Might Know the Password You Forgot

2014-08-August-broken-padlock.jpgIs the notion of online security as passé as the illusion of privacy? Maybe.

Just this week, we learned that a small group of hackers in Russia amassed a database of 1.2 billion stolen user IDs and passwords.

Hold Security, the Milwaukee, Wis.-based company that disclosed the incident, described the incident as "arguably the largest data breach known to date."

The Russian cyber gang targeted websites indiscriminately, hitting Fortune 500 companies and mom and pop sites alike. Hold Security reported the thieves "amassed more than 4.5 billion records, mostly consisting of stolen credentials. 1.2 billion of these credentials appear to be unique, belonging to over half a billion e-mail addresses."

Goodbye Mobile Apps, Hello Multi-Device Experiences

customer experience, mobile phonesYour app runs in a little square.

All the money you spend on developers, design teams, content production and infrastructure for your app essentially boils down to a little square. Sometimes it’s a bigger square. Sometimes it’s more of a rectangle. And sometimes your app is responsive and tries to adjust itself as the square changes shape.

But in the end, your brand's communications still come down to that little square.

How to Approach Your Next Web Replatforming

Web CMS, 2014-06-August-Ants-Moving.jpgThere’s no rest for the weary if you're a digital marketer in 2014. As the pace of technological change accelerates, it’s all one can do to keep up. Take replatforming, that Herculean effort of moving from one website solution to another, whether an upgrade or moving to a different vendor’s solution.

As technology’s pace quickens the cycle of replatforming gets shorter and shorter. Where once a 5-year cycle would be deemed leading edge, today it puts you smack in the middle of the laggard quadrant of the adoption lifecycle. In fact, a strong argument could be made that replatforming should be treated as an ongoing program, not a one-time project. 

How to Reduce 'Tech Effort' in Support Centers

customer service, 2014-06-August-Tangled.jpgResolving customer issues quickly and during the first interaction takes effort. It involves creating the right culture, integrating new technologies and improving processes. Market leaders are dedicating huge sums of money to enhance their customer support or acquiring companies with proven support technology to reach these goals.

IBM's report,“The Customer-activated Enterprise,” surveyed more than 4,000 executives and came away with three common themes: companies want to be more open to customer influence, pioneer digital-physical innovation and craft engaging customer experiences. All three themes can be seen across the tech support industry. Customers want their tech issues resolved quickly, and in the communication style and channel they choose.

The Key to Measuring Content Marketing ROI

Content Marketing, 2014-06-August-REVS-COST.jpg"How do we measure the return on our content investment?

This question made a lot of sense 4-5 years ago. What we today call “big data” was in its infantile stages. Data collection was robust, but costs were high and usability was poor. Expenditures related to content were roughly 3 to 4 percent of marketing budgets and users weren’t used to the idea of companies producing content. Simply put, most of us didn’t really want or care to measure the results. The ability, desire and necessity of measuring content value just wasn’t there.

With content marketing expenditures increasing to approximately 30 to 40 percent of corporate marketing budgets, content marketing initiatives need to be grounded in repeatable and informative data structures. In short, as the budgets grow, so does the need for attribution and accountability.

Understanding how to assign attribution and accountability is where things get tricky. However, it doesn’t get tricky in the way most might think.

Improve DAM Workflows Without Breaking the Budget

2014-06-August-Hard-Times.jpgThe last thing creative staff want to do is add metadata to their assets and upload them into an asset management system. They want to create, not spend any amount of time performing administrative tasks. And I don't think it's a good use of their time either.

But these tasks are essential. It doesn’t matter how great the content is if you can’t find it, and if you can’t find it, you can’t use it.

What's New in August for Open Source CMS

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A fact many of us learned in high school — that popularity has its downsides — is proving to be true in the world of open source content management systems (CMS).

Take WordPress — the most popular CMS in the world, powering an astonishing 47.4 percent of all sites on the Internet, according to BuiltWith, a website profiler, lead generation, competitive analysis and business intelligence tool.

July, to use a shameless cliché, was both the best of times, and the worst of times, for this inordinately popular platform. New research from 34SP.com found more than half of UK small businesses are using WordPress as a CMS, thereby “finally blowing away its image as just a blogging platform."

The same study also confirmed a few things that were not included in the official results, including the fact 31 percent of 34SP.com clients who use WordPress call wine their favorite beverage (Jägerbombs really disappointed with just 1 percent of the votes) and only 13 percent have more than 500 friends on Facebook. What does this have to do with anything? Nothing. So let's move on.

Sitecore Marries .NET Customer Experience, E-Commerce

Sitecore's acquisition of commerceserver.net is getting its wings.

Now, Sitecore officials report, they have the first enterprise-grade .NET customer experience management solution with fully integrated commerce functionality. They are blending real time digital marketing with enterprise commerce.

The San Francisco-based company today released an "early access program" for its new platform, Sitecore Commerce. The capabilities Sitecore officials described -- personalization, relevant digital experiences, customer lifecyle, single, connected platform -- are in line with the all-in-one engine that Sitecore touts.

"Following the acquisition of commerceserver.net last November, Sitecore has blended real-time digital marketing with powerful enterprise commerce," Mark Floisand, vice president of product marketing at Sitecore, told CMSWire. "We're also working closely with Microsoft Dynamics AX to build an omni-channel commerce offering built for retailers who need to bridge the gap between in-store and digital experiences."

Brick and Mortar Fights Back Against the E-Commerce Tsunami

customer experience, 2014-05-August-Boxer.jpgTraditional brick and mortar retailers have been mired in a slump for most of the last year. To change their fortunes, they need to strengthen their core asset -- their stores. The majority aren't equipped to compete against pure play e-tailers on their own terms -- they don't have e-commerce in their DNA like the Amazons or eBays, they lack the technical skillsets required, and with $260B+ in online sales in the US alone in 2013, it’s too late to put the lid back on Pandora’s Box.

While many view traditional brick and mortar stores as more of an anchor than an advantage, more than 90 percent of retail sales still occur in store. Retailers need to use them to their advantage to push back against e-commerce competition.

Content: Say Something New

2014-04-August-Yawn.jpgI have a confession to make: I’m bored.

I’m bored of seeing the same regurgitated articles every week. I’m bored of our disciplines debating if we should be called content strategy, content marketing or inbound marketing. I’m tired of us fighting about how important content strategists are or should be, or need to be. I’m bored because instead of showing me the work, you talk about how you would approach the work, or should approach the work. Why don’t you just show me how you approached it and what you learned?

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