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Jan. 09, 2012 | by Sam Vining Exporting large sets of data with Google Analytics

For top-level information, Google Analytics offers some nice summary graphs that help you quickly get to grips with your site’s information. For those of us that like to get our hands dirty with the data underneath though, Analytics offers a handy ‘export to CSV’ function for endless tinkering in your spreadsheet application of choice.

The default limit for exporting rows of data is set at 500 – fine for a smaller site with just a few dozen pages, or reports over a short time period. But what to do if you operate a larger site, and would like to export information for your several thousand pages? Or would like to download the entire list of keywords that brought users to your site? Based on the popularity of your site or variety of your content, these lists could easily generate tens of thousands of rows – potentially hundreds of thousands over a long enough period. This could lead to painstaking hours exporting 500 rows at a time to get at the data you need, and find the crucial insight that will change your world.

Fortunately for all of us spreadsheet-jockeys there is an easier way. Analytics veterans will be aware of a workaround to help them export larger amounts of rows at once – simply adding the text &limit= and the desired number of rows (up to a limit of 50,000) to the end of any Analytics URL, for example: https://www.google.com/analytics/reporting/keywords?……………..&limit=5000. With this extra parameter you’d be able to export up to 100 times more rows at once!

Anybody who has adopted the latest update of Google Analytics may have been dismayed to discover that this tactic will not work with version 5. So how can we achieve the same result now?

The process is similar, and hopefully a bit more straight-forward. When viewing your report of choice, scroll down to the bottom of the page and you should see this in the right corner:

Number of rows

From the drop-down menu, choose ‘500’. Once your page has loaded, you’ll notice an extra bit of text has been added to the end of your URL: it should now finish with explorer-table.rowCount%3D500. Replace the ‘500’ in this string with your desired figure – as before, anything up to 50,000 will work. Hit enter and export, and you have your data!

All well and good, but what if your data requirement is slightly larger? What if you need to export, say, 200,000 rows? Find the part of your URL that contains this text: geo-table.rowStart%3D0. The ‘0’ here can be amended to begin at any row you desire – so for the next 50,000, let’s start at row 50,001 with the following text: geo-table.rowStart%3D50001. The end of your URL should be changed to explorer-table.rowCount%3D100000. You’ll now have the next 50,000 rows ready to export.

Using this technique you could export one million rows by loading just twenty pages. To do this 500 rows at a time would require you to generate 2000 pages – quite a time-saving!

Dec. 22, 2011 | by Gregory Lyons 2011 the year of the mobile

Last year we took a look at what we thought would be big in 2011 and mobile was one of our predictions. In this post we’ll take a look at how mobile did in 2011 and where it might head in 2012.

If we look at the data from November 2011 we can see that mobile search represented 15% of total search for popular Christmas items in the UK. With as much as 44% of total last minute gift searches coming from mobiles.

When it comes to local information and specifically maps usage, Google’s Marisa Myers predicted that by June this year mobile would have surpassed desktop usage with over 50% of people accessing map information via mobile devices. In addition 24% of UK consumers are using mobiles for in store comparison.

Worldwide mobile search usage has increased five fold
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Dec. 21, 2011 | by Georgie Wright New Year plans from Facebook

As we’re all winding down for Christmas, Facebook is working on a few additions which could be interesting for our social campaigns next year. Here’s a quick heads up…

1)      Sponsored Stories ads

Building on the success of Facebook’s Sponsored Story as a format in 2011, the social network is readying a plan to expand the format to introduce ads into users’ news feeds from early next year.

As display ads do not currently appear in a users’ feed, the initial roll out in the New Year will be introduced ‘thoughtfully and slowly’ and will be clearly marked. A spokesperson from Facebook said that initially no more than one ad per day will be shown to users.

Initial stats from Facebook’s introduction of Sponsored Stories showed that they were effectively driving up click through rates and decreasing the cost per acquisition.  The user feedback to the presence of ads in their new feeds will be interesting over the next few months so it’s definitely one to keep a close eye on in 2012.

Brand Republic has written a great article covering this.

2)      Private messages for Pages

It was announced yesterday that Facebook has begun to roll out a functionality that allows users and Page owners to exchange private messages! It’s breaking news – that could potentially allow page owners and brands direct access to their audience, however, with the initial roll out Facebook is requiring individuals to initiate the conversation.

The potential for this is huge with Econsultancy stating that ‘it’s far easier to market to consumers than it is to communicate with them. Facebook may be looking to change that slightly’. The possibilities for  customer service is huge and it could propel brand pages towards being a much more effective marketing tool for brands. Those brands with larger Facebook followings should look into this sooner rather than later, and be geared up for possible increased communication through the channel in 2012.

As always we will be sure to let you know of any further advances as the New Year kicks in.

Dec. 20, 2011 | by Maya.Kamourieh Affiliate Marketing and the lemon squeezer

Affiliate Marketing has been around for over ten years ever since Jeff Bezos, CEO and founder of Amazon.com, pondered the idea of having others advertise links on their sites to Amazon.com and receive a commission on sales for doing so. Well that’s how legend has it that the first affiliate programme on the internet launched. Since that time Affiliate Marketing has grown into a multi-million pound industry which forms an integral part of an advertisers marketing strategy.

As new affiliate models are created and existing models are developed, account managers continue to adapt to the different ways of managing a client’s brand. Affiliate Marketing has greatly advanced especially over the last six years where affiliates have grown from the “back bedroom” operations of the past to corporate businesses that have spent years developing and promoting websites enabling a larger reach. But just as Affiliates have grown so have internet shoppers who have all become a savvy bargain hunting nation looking for the lowest possible prices.

These “lemon squeezers” spend hours surfing the net for discount vouchers and other deals such as a two-for-one offer at a pizza restaurant, free delivery codes or limited-time discounts. Unfortunately there are also a hard core of internet users looking to exploit the many loopholes out there and Affiliate Marketing is no different. It’s easy to get stung if you don’t fully understand the world of Affiliate Marketing. You have probably already heard of things such as “brand bidding” and “cookie dropping” where individuals are looking to make easy money on your natural traffic but there are many other pitfalls which we have to be aware of in order for an affiliate programme to fully succeed.

With experience we can build up knowledge of the pitfalls that advertisers can suffer. One example of this is taking advantage of misspelt URLs. If you take a look at the WHOIS for a domain listed as wwwretailer.co.uk (missing the leading period) for example, there is a good chance you will find the domain is registered to an individual who more likely than not will use an affiliate link to re-direct the user to the retailer site. It’s very simple and can easily be missed if you don’t look out for it. Things like this are very preventable and you could save thousands by taking certain steps when launching an Affiliate Programme.
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Dec. 20, 2011 | by Georgie Wright Ambush Marketing and the Law in 2011 + 1

There is a certain sporting event coming up next year that I am sure you are all aware of. Its impact on the UK, and globally, will be huge as the world pauses to watch some of the greatest sporting performances, and achievements, of our time. We wait with baited breath, yet I’m hesitant to mention its name for fear of a smacked wrist!


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Dec. 14, 2011 | by Daniel.Fernandez 5 tips for students looking for a digital marketing placement

I thought it would be a good idea to write a post about my placement experience at iCrossing, and give some tips to those students that are about to finish the second year at University and are thinking about building a career in Marketing by gaining work experience before graduating.

Let’s crack on…

Who am I?

My name is Daniel Fernandez – a third year Marketing and Management Student at the University of Gloucestershire. I am currently doing my placement at iCrossing, based in the offices that the company has in Brighton.

Here is a picture of me..

Dani Fernandez

1 – Choose your specialism

Once you have decided to go on placement, the first thing to do is have a look at the opportunities that your degree and the different markets offer you. I chose Digital Marketing among other options such as Branding and International Marketing…

2 – Choose the right company
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Dec. 12, 2011 | by Daniel.Fernandez What do Twitter brand pages mean for marketers?

First Facebook was followed by LinkedIn and Google. Now its Twitter’s turn as they have announced new profiles for businesses. At the moment they are only available to a limited number of companies, but Twitter has said that it will be rolling out more broadly in the coming weeks together with important updates across the different platforms; PC and mobile versions.

As competitors did before, Twitter has partnered up with some of the biggest International companies in supporting the new version, such as  McDonalds , Coca-Cola, Bing, Dell, HeinekenHP and  Intel among others. Most of these already have official  brand pages on Twitter.

What’s different?

Design, Videos and Images

On Twitter’s official blog, the company describe a new and simplified version of the social network, which provides companies the ability to customise their profile with more of a branded look. As we can see in the below example from the Coca-Cola Twitter page.

Coca-cola

However, customisation is not the only new advantage for companies and followers. The new twitter also allows brands to show embedded multimedia; videos and images. This makes the new Twitter site more visually appealing for users and gives businesses the opportunity to spread content in different formats.

Space tweetSpace tweet

 

 

 

 

 

What are Embeddable Tweets?

A new feature from Twitter allows content authors to add tweets to their websites, simply by copying and pasting a simple line of code.  That enables visitors to follow, reply, re-tweet or favourite a tweet with a single click and without leaving the page.

Twitter Buttons
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Dec. 09, 2011 | by Georgie Wright Google Schemer – ‘The Beginning of Everything worth Doing’

The latest from Google is an event-focused website called Schemer.com that encourages users to share information about places and events to go to. Gathering recommendations from people, businesses and celebrities the site will provide a source of information for where to go and what to do in cities around the globe.

A quick chat with some of my colleagues in Natural Search today provided some interesting insights.

“This could be really interesting if Google eventually integrates the recommendations into local search results. I imagine that event recommendations scores will be based on how many people have rated the event, or if a trusted user has rated an event.  The site is still in beta, but I hope it really works as it’s a great way to share events socially.”
(Chris Suarez, Director of Natural Search)

“This feels very much like Google’s looking for a piece of the Groupon/LivingSocial markeplace, although it doesn’t state that there will be discount similar to Groupon and LivingSocial. Another review I have read online is that is sound similar to Foursquare, such as its tips and to-do lists. Google could be at risk of confusing the market with ‘another’ social network, however it is tied into Google+ so this could be another approach to drive activity in this social network. They will need to offer some incentive to get people to use it, as consumers/users seem to expect this now-a-days from new social networks”                      (Doug Platts, Head of Natural Search)

Currently in beta stage, operating by invitation only, we’re still to see the true scope of the site but it’s definitely one to keep an eye on over the next few months. For more information check out schemer.com or check out the Brand Republic article and video!

Dec. 08, 2011 | by Liz Ayers Google Flight Search Rolling out to the main SERPs

Further developments of the Google Flight Search product have been announced, Google Flight Search results are being promoted to the main web SERPs. Still currently only available for domestic flights within the US, if you type in a search query such as “flights from {US departure location} to {US arrival location}” the results are expected to display airlines, their routes, arrival and departure times and the price. This side by side placement for flights make it easy to compare process from within the SERPs, there is likely to be the quick link straight through to book the flight on the airlines website. I say “expected” and “likely” because I have yet to be able to replicate this in the result myself but Google announced it to be rolling out from the beginning of the week. This development shows no sign of greater inclusion of meta search sites or OTAs, whose lack of presence allegedly has been enforced onto Google by request of the airlines in exchange of their willingness to provide data for this feature. This undoubtedly has led to discussions around freedom of choice and we wait to see how Google reacts to this and incorporates OTAs and meta search sites further into these flight SERPs.

Google flight search

What this means
Any sites which appear on the first page for flight related queries are going to find their share of the real estate changing. Looking at the screen grab I have taken from the relevant post on Google’s Search Blog you can clearly see that the #1 natural listing will no longer be visible above the fold, with both Sponsored Ads and the new Flight Search product claiming the top spots. Of course like anything there are winners and losers, Airlines will benefit here and can claim increased real estate, but others will lose. When looking at visibility reports bear in mind that top positions are no longer expected to receive as high CTRs as before. Airlines are to expect increased traffic and conversions, however OTAs and meta search sites can expect a decrease in traffic.

Dec. 07, 2011 | by Liz Ayers New markup for international search campaigns

On Monday Google announced its support of a new mark-up for multilingual content. This tag can be used if you are serving up the same content in the same language to different international markets as well as for translated content. The tag should be really useful for sites which find that the wrong version of their site is out ranking the preferred market URLs. It is common that US sites with a strong back link profile outrank their international versions of the site in the international SERPs. When implemented on each URL of the site, this tag should help to combat this.

In the tag you can specify the language, in this instance German.

<link rel=”alternate” hreflang=”de” href=”http://www.example.com/de/” />

or the language and the region, in this instance German in Switzerland.

<link rel=”alternate” hreflang=”de-CH” href=”http://www.example.com/de-ch/” />

Providing these signals to the search engines will enable them to have greater understanding of the intent of the content and serve the most appropriate URL in the search results. This will make the SERPs more relevant for users and increase traffic and conversion to many international search campaigns.

Summary

If your site targets people in more than one geographical location I would recommend this tag be implemented site wide.

For more information take a look at the original post on the Google Webmaster Central Blog