Street Fight Happenings
As the country starts to re-open and recover (some places more quickly than others), we’ll shift our focus to cover specifically how that’s happening. And what better vertical to represent local business recovery than retail? It will be a leading indicator for several other local commerce verticals.
So we introduce our June editorial theme: Retail Recovery. The goal: to chronicle the steps local businesses are taking to reemerge from locked doors and empty streets. Who’s doing what, and what can we learn from them? By “them” we mean businesses and the tech providers that support them.
Google in particular has made significant moves in recent months to verticalize the consumer search experience. For example, the team responsible for the relatively new Google Travel and Google Hotels sites has reported that they built a new consumer experience for hotels specifically because they noted important differences in the ways consumers searched in that category.
Brandify’s study illustrates that consumer preferences for additional verticals are similarly differentiated, both in the channels consumers prefer for each vertical and the sorts of information they seek out when searching. Already, the search experience for restaurants, retail stores, and healthcare providers varies by vertical, especially on Google, which has added prominent vertical-specific attributes as a result of Covid-19 such as dine-in, takeout, and pickup availability for restaurants.
In our own reporting and analysis (and through the words of our contributors) this month, we’ll define the playbook for local re-entry. As business ramps back up, what will best practices be for local staples such as search marketing and reputation management?
We’ve already covered how businesses are digitizing to adapt to the challenges of commerce in a time of social distancing, embracing curbside pickup, social advertising, pop-up distribution centers, online classes, and retail tech. With an even longer-term view, we’ll examine how this period of uncertainty will shape the future of local commerce.
Theme of the Month
The latest wave of touchless payment solutions are designed for small merchants dealing with the fallout from the pandemic. Contactless payments went from being “nice to have” to a being an essential service for retailers in 2020, as consumers around the world discovered that they really didn’t want to touch cash or POS hardware while they were making purchases at local stores.
While the return of nearly unrestricted in-person shopping heralds brighter days for brands and retailers, it is also a challenge. Consumers have gotten used to digital shopping as e-commerce soared amid the pandemic. How will retailers provide that same frictionless experience to meet elevated customer expectations in-store? Amy Vale, CMO at cash-back app Dosh, weighs in.
Retailers that don’t start offering flexible payment options on their checkout pages soon risk losing shoppers who prefer the unconventional approach to financing, especially for more expensive items. Flexible payment solutions tout bigger carts, customization, and faster transactions among their benefits.
From tethered to cordless, handheld to hands-free. As payment processing hardware continues to evolve, retailers are beginning to experiment with allowing customers to actually become their own point-of-sale systems.
M7 Innovations’ Matt Maher discusses AT&T’s new powerhouse, Cloudflare’s latest authentication solution, and Twitter subscriptions.
To define the current state and future trajectory of mobile payments, we’ve rounded up top industry voices and thought leaders from Liftoff, Standard, Elevated Franchise Marketing, and UserTesting.
In this episode of Location Weekly, the Location-Based Marketing Association covers P&G’s SK-II retail pop-up in China, Burger King partnering with Rovio’s Angry Birds, MomentFeed unveiling “enhanced local photos,” and Ford patenting a new system for billboard-to-car advertising. Also, Mark Michael, CEO of DevHub, visits the pod. DevHub just acquired Brickwork Software.
Brickwork will be operated by DevHub going forward, and the company’s software will become a product in DevHub’s lineup of solutions. DevHub CTO Daniel Rust believes that Brickwork’s software will make DevHub’s current offerings to local marketing brands even stronger by enabling new online-to-store conversion actions, such as appointment booking and event RSVP.
When digital marketers think of content, they may think of Google Posts, basic SEO material, or thought leadership posts. But as e-commerce thrives, the most fundamental content to upgrade may be what digital marketing firm Jellyfish is calling “performance content.”
AI leverages and analyzes data to take action toward the best possible outcome. However, contextual AI takes this one step further. It leverages the power of machine learning to provide human-like understanding of content. For brands, this means that they can serve relevant ads without the need for cookies or third-party data. Contextual advertising allows brands to engage with consumers within their universe of interest while protecting brand safety at the highest level.
With looming privacy changes, how can brands deliver digital experiences while remaining compliant? The answer lies in multitouch attribution and transparency.
Account-based marketing promised to take marketing to a new level of granularity. Instead of targeting entire companies, marketers would be able to connect with the specific accounts within enterprises that could lead to conversions.
But Influ2 reckons that ABM doesn’t offer B2B marketers enough granularity. As a result, it is pioneering person-based advertising in the B2B space, bringing the personalization of consumer marketing to the B2B setting.
As technology has vastly increased the degree of targeting granularity marketers can achieve, there’s been a tendency to think of the customer journey as a solo endeavor. But in verticals like travel, QSR, and automotive, purchase decisions are more often a group activity involving all members of the family. Household targeting is the key to maximizing marketing performance in these segments.