If you’re new here, welcome! And thanks for subscribing to Get Elastic. Friday is Blogger Digest day where we highlight posts from other blogs that are of value and interest to online retailers and Internet marketers.
This week was particularly juicy in ecommerce news:
- Manufacturer Belkin got caught with its pants down, using Amazon's Mechanical Turk service (like a Craigslist job board for small or odd computer jobs) to find "product review" posters. For $0.65 per review, reviewers were instructed to leave 100% feedback on Belkin products and to “mark any other negative reviews as “not helpful” once you post yours.” Arlen Parsa discovered the posting and blogged about it, including the LinkedIn profile of the man responsible for this tactic. Soon, Belkin employees came out of the woodwork to confess the whole company has a shady culture.
- While Canadian Tire pulls out of ecommerce, Sears hopes you pull up to its drive-through pick-up windows. Storefront Backtalk has a good post on tthe move, noting that the downside of the pick-up window vs. pick up in store is it eliminates the upsell opportunity the in-store pickup affords. Well, unless Sears starts asking "would you like a cordless drill with that?"
- Choice quote of the week from Evan Schuman's colleague re Canadian Tire and Sears' decisions: “They’ve both created drive-throughs. This is really about trying to wear out tires to make more sales.”
- Sears is in the ecommerce news again, this time for being one of several retailers settling a lawsuit over a gift card validation process patent. Almost every retailer today is in potential violation of this patent if it accepts gift cards with revolving balances at physical stores.
- If you're a blogger who uses Feedburner, don't forget to migrate your feed to Google before February 28. If you noticed a huge subscriber drop on your blog, don't panic, we all felt a subscriber hit (ours down almost 40%) due to the migration glitches.
The SEMMYs, EMMYs and COMMYs
It's that time of year again...the Semmy's! While there's no red carpet, you'll find a collection of great articles from 2008 in various Search Engine Marketing (SEM) categories.
Get Elastic is a proud 2009 Semmy Nominee in a few categories:
2009 SEMMY Nominee
- Pay-Per-Click nomination for PPC Copywriting: The Evolution of a Split Test
- Online Marketing nomination for How to Attract Customer Reviews (not the Belkin way, that's for sure!)
- LOL Funny nomination for Why Ecommerce is a Lot Like iCanHasCheezburger
Perhaps E-mail Marketing awards could be referred to as Emmys? Check out the best of 2008 according to Chad White of the RetailEmailBlog's 2008 Email Design Hall of Fame
Now for this week's Commy's (e-Commerce, get it? That's @jbillingsley's comedic genius)
- In the Customer Service category: Survey Says: You're Not Getting the Right Feedback From Your Customers from Justin Palmer of Palmer Web Marketing.
- In the Web Analytics category: Measure Latent Conversions & Visitor Behavior by Avinash Kaushik.
- In the PPC category: The Match Type Keyword Trap Series by the Click Equations Blog. A must read if you do PPC.
- In the Site Optimization category: 404 Pages are Great for Sales by Samantha Gonzales from the Invesp Blog.
- In the Logistics and Fulfillment category: The Magic of Free Shipping by Maxim Mironov of Optimalogica.
- In the Web Design and Usability category: Why You Shouldn't Make Users Register Before Buying by eConsultancy.
You also get one bonus post from me this week on the topic of SEO. I wrote this guest post for Image X Media Search Engine Traffic: It's Not All About Rankings. (FYI: I used to work with Image X Media, which is a Drupal development shop).