3 Ways to Reduce Packaging Waste (and the Eco-Friendly Brands to Learn From)

The below article originally appeared on the Kooomo website. Kooomo will be exhibiting at this year’s eCommerce Show North.

Have you ever received a giant box in the post and thought to yourself ‘Hmm, I don’t remember ordering anything this big…have I been shopping in my sleep again?!’

Then you open the box to find that it actually consists of 50% packing peanuts, 30% inflated airbags, 10% tissue paper, and the remaining 10% is the small, non-fragile items that you purchased online (probably also wrapped in a plastic bag for good measure).

In 2017, packaging waste in Ireland grew 27% to over 7,000 tonnes for the year, equivalent to the waste generated by a town of 16,000 residents. Furthermore, a recent study by MacFarlane Packaging found that 41% of online brands are using too much packaging for their items.

With global eCommerce sales due to reach $4 trillion by 2020, there’s never been a more crucial time for brands to do their part to reduce waste and be as environmentally conscious as possible. Because not only does reducing packaging have a substantial effect on the environment, it also has a knock-on effect on overall shipping costs. Win win!

Today, we’re looking at three ways that online retailers can be greener when it comes to utilising packaging and shipping materials as well as the brands that have taken major steps towards making eCommerce a more eco-friendly space.

 Tip #1: Use recyclable and bio-degradable materials wherever possible

It goes without saying (but we’re going to say it anyway) – you should ALWAYS choose recyclable shipping materials (paper, cardboard, bubble wrap, corn-starch items, and biodegradable plastic) over their non-recyclable counterparts. Better yet – try to use 100% recycled material when shipping your products. Polystyrene (aka Styrofoam), though it can technically be recycled, typically can’t be done locally, so either ends up in a landfill, or unknowingly gets tossed in a recycle bin, where it could potentially slow down the entire recycling process by damaging the machines that sort materials. A survey by Dotcom Distribution found that 61% of online shoppers take into account how green the brand’s packaging is before they make a purchase. Therefore it’s vital that you choose your shipping materials wisely – not only for the greater good of the environment, but also to enhance your overall customer experience. One brand who has nailed both is Puma, whose ‘clever little bag’ replaced the traditional shoebox in 2010. The non-woven bag, which holds shoes in place with a single piece of cardboard is responsible for saving 8500 tonnes of paper, 1 million litres of water, and 65% of cardboard material to date.

Tip #2: Size matters

If you want to ensure that your shipping materials are as eco-friendly as possible, you MUST start sizing to fit. The average package contains approximately 40% of empty space. Not only does this mean more emissions, but it also means a greater overall costs to merchants. Every inch counts just as much as every kilogram, especially considering the fact that most shipping costs are now based on dimensional weight. What this means is that weight is no longer the dominant factor in calculating shipping rates – how much room a package will take up in a delivery truck is!

Not every brand is going to have the resources available to integrate package design technology that will optimise every last inch of packaging, but every online retailer can absolutely take small steps that will make a big difference. Simply put, there’s no such thing as a one-size fits all box in online retail. So if you’re shipping a small product to a customer, let’s say a wallet for example – does it really need to be in a double wall 305 x 220 x 220mm box? Probably not. ‘But what about products that need to have the protection that only polystyrene blocks can provide?’ you might wonder. Well, look at Dell, who developed bamboo cushioning back in 2009 as an alternative to plastic foam following customer complaints about their shipping boxes. The cushioning, which can be recycled or composted in the same way as paper has played a significant part in reducing box sizes by 10% as well as cutting 20 million pounds of packaging and an 8% reduction in greenhouse gas emissions.

Tip #3: Think inside the box

So assuming you have optimised the sizes of your shipping boxes, there’s another conundrum to consider – should you or shouldn’t you custom brand your shipping boxes? Well, over 40% of online consumers say that branded packaging makes them more likely to recommend products to friends and are more likely to share images on social media, so yes! You should absolutely consider custom branded shipping packaging for your products. However, if you’re going to pump considerable budget into creating custom branded packaging, you should try to ensure that it serves a greater purpose than brand awareness (or even *gasp*, customer experience). If you’re branding your shipping boxes, you should take the opportunity to remove a supplementary piece of material in your shipping box.

Take Farmacy as your source of innovation inspiration. The skincare brand constructed a 6-sided origami style box to hold their jars of ‘honey potion’ face masks. The box can then be unfolded to reveal the brand story and ingredient information, removing the need to include a separate insert into each product box. Try doing something similar with your own shipping boxes. Do you typically include a card containing your brand’s social media handles and official hashtags in each shipment to encourage user-generated content? Try printing this message on the inside of the box instead! And while you’re at it, always include a message asking your customers to get involved in making the world a greener place by recycling the box and/or various ways they can repurpose it!

It’s the responsibility of every online brand to ensure that they are doing their bit to reduce their carbon footprint. At Kooomo, we’re delighted to see so many of our partners and customers making strides towards increased sustainability through shipping and otherwise. La Sportiva recycles 50% of production waste through their adoption of the eco-sustainable ISO 14001 certification. Havaianas donates 7% of the proceeds from their IPE range to the conservation of Brazilian flora and fauna projects. Butlers Chocolates locally source packaging to reduce the amount of product materials used.

As far as shipping goes, who knows – maybe one day brands will somehow be able to get orders to customers without the need for packaging. But until then, every little change can make a big difference. Maybe that is removing a single non-essential piece of packaging from your shipments. Or maybe it means altering the sizes of your shipping boxes. Whatever that change may be, any change really is better than no change at all.

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Setting Up Your First AdWords Shopping Campaign

The article below originally appeared on the adaplo website. adaplo will be exhibiting at his year’s eCommerce Show North.

For starters, you are in a great position because you have already decided to start (a good start is half the battle, right?).

You have also probably done your research and found out that Shopping Campaigns are one of the main growth drivers for eCommerce stores. Truth be told, they do get 75% of the search budget of sophisticated retailers (source: Merkle Digital Quarterly report Q2 2017) and have increased their share of total store orders by 160% in the last 2 years. Therefore, they are indeed a traffic source that lives up to the hype.

To help formulate your strategy for starting Google Shopping, there are plenty of resources available online. However, if you want everything you will ever need to start Google Shopping effectively and efficiently in one place, then this short guide is for you.

We did all the research for you and, combined with our experience working with different clients in different industries and countries, we give you a closer look into:

  • The requirements for Shopping Campaigns
  • The main steps involved
  • How to monitor the performance of your ads

Requirements for Shopping Campaigns

Before we get into the details, let’s first make sure that you are eligible to launch Product Listing Ads (the “other name” of Shopping Campaigns). There are some strict requirements to fulfill so that you don’t do all the hard work only to find out that you cannot run your ads.

The most important requirements are:

  • Your product and business must abide by the Google Shopping policies. These policies are different and on top of the standard Google AdWords policies. You can read the full policy but rest assured that you cannot advertise adult products, counterfeit goods or academic cheating goods.
  • You want to sell (and run ads) on a country that supports Shopping Campaigns. Although this product is out there for quite a while, it is not yet available in all Countries. You can find the full list of countries at the bottom of this help article
  • You have the ability to send updated information to Google about your products at least every 30 days. This is really important because data quality is important to Google in order to maintain a good user experience.

Now that you know the requirements to safely launch product listing ads, it’s time to set up your first campaign, which is an easy 4-step process that includes the following:

  1. Create your product feed
  2. Setup your Google Merchant Center account and sync your feed
  3. Create your Google AdWords account, if you do not already have one
  4. Link your Merchant Center account (MCA) with your AdWords account

Are you done with these? Let’s move forward!

How To Setup Google Shopping

Launching a new campaign is a straightforward process. On top of this, Google keeps improving the campaign setup process with a series of steps.

What I would like to share is a high-level approach to the most important decisions and settings you need. As with everything else, if you get the basics right, you are off to a good start.

1. Select a country

If you just sell in one Country, this would be a non-issue. But what if you are selling in multiple countries? Should you advertise in all of these countries or just a few of them? And, how do you choose which ones? I suggest you start with one country – preferably a country you are already getting sales from as it is a validated market – learn from it and then scale to more countries. Shopping will not work for you if you are trying to sell at a market in which you are not competitive, either due to product selection or due to price levels and competition.

A common bad practice that should be avoided:

More than often, I see Campaign Managers investing days of work trying to forecast or predict the results of new campaigns. I have lost count of the times I was asked to give an opinion on how the CPC (cost-per-click) will go per campaign and per country for an account that hasn’t even been launched yet. I suggest you don’t go down that road because:

  • It takes up a lot of your time to do these calculations/predictions (and for no good reason) – and time is money
  • No matter how good you are, your estimations will go really off, because you are not starting with good data but with ballpark assumptions

My recommendation is to just start and wait for a few days to have clean data (not assumptions) that you can base your calculations on.

2. Budget and bidding

Now you need to define your budget and bidding. Although Google first asks for your bidding, I believe that semantically you should first think about your budget and then decide how you are going to spend that money (aka bidding).

Start with a budget that you feel comfortable with, not the max amount you can invest or the amount that you would like to invest (to get to your sales growth targets). Keep in mind that this is a “testing budget”, given that in PPC (pay-per-click) you need to run things for some time so that you can see the real results after the system understands your case and after you have run some optimizations. Typically it takes close to 2 months before you start seeing the real performance. Then, you can decide how to scale the account. This does not mean that you will not be getting conversions for the first 2 months; it is just that you will not be getting the max returns for your budget.

To sum up, determine a short-term budget that you feel comfortable with and divide it by 2 months to get your initial daily budget.

Next comes setting your bidding strategy. These days, Google is offering different ways to bid, which is great. However, it also means that we have to choose. My recommendation would be to either choose “Target ROAS” or “Manual CPC”, depending on how much time you wish to allocate to your campaign management. Let me clarify. If this first campaign is just a start point in a quest to dive even deeper into this channel, then choose “Manual CPC”. You will get tons of data on various dimensions (campaign, ad group, product group, device, etc). Plus, you will be able to optimize the performance as you get more data. This is also the way sophisticated advertisers with proprietary algorithms choose. But if you do not have the time or skill set required to continuously optimize your account, go for “Target ROAS” since this is a machine-learning-based algorithm by Google that does what it says, namely increase your ROAS.

3. What products to advertise

As with countries, it is best to start with the product you are already selling like hot cakes. And, why is that product so popular? Because you have a good combo of product positioning, high-quality, relevant images, hard-to-beat pricing or competitive positioning. So, take what you already know works and start this new ad channel with it. The objective for your first weeks is to see if you can get more sales, not sell new items. Then you can scale your campaigns to other products.

The whole process needs to be agile, meaning that you should start small and then scale based on the data. Refrain from taking the “start small” approach to heart and have just 1 Shopping Campaign with 1 AdGroup which is a mistake many campaign managers make. This is not good practice as it will not deliver the results you expect and also minimises the learnings you can get from this first campaign.

My recommendation is to start with a single Shopping Campaign and break down 7-10 AdGroups based on a column of your feed (preferably category or brand). Then, as you get more data, you can further break down more campaigns into more granular targetings to optimise both the targeting and the bidding.

Monitor performance

As you start getting ad clicks (and hopefully conversions) from your campaigns you will want to monitor the performance of your ads and find optimization ideas. The obvious place would be to check Google AdWords UI daily and see the performance of your Campaign.

The main metrics that you should monitor are:

  • Cost (how much you are spending)
  • Conversions, and
  • Conv value/Cost (aka ROAS, or how many $ you are getting from each $1 on ads)

But wouldn’t it be great if you could periodically run an audit of your Campaign(s) and see if there are optimisations that you could do? In this case, we have some exciting news. We have worked hard and created the first Google Shopping Performance Grader, which allows you to run a free audit of your campaigns in less than 60’’.

Our Grader will analyze your campaigns across 9 dimensions and give you a beautifully designed report with your score, as well as actionable recommendations.

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How to Deal With Negative Product Reviews in eCommerce

Space48 are one of our Event Partners this year and will also be exhibiting at the expo. The below article originally appeared on their website and was written by their Head of Insight, Oliver Lees.

Many retailers and online businesses are afraid of negative product reviews, fearing they will damage the reputation of their brand and hinder conversion rate.

These days, customer reviews and user-generated content is important in eCommerce for influencing consumer decision-making.

Space 48’s Head of Insight, Oliver Lees, outlines 7 great ways to deal with negative product reviews, discussing how they can actually help your business improve!

Turn a negative into a positive

Don’t fear negative customer reviews and low products ratings. Perfect reviews on websites don’t look authentic. Seeing a few bad reviews amongst mainly positive reviews is normal and displaying them shows transparency and helps to build trust in brand.

A study by Yotpo, one of our favourite user-generated content (UGC) solutions, revealed that the most common words mentioned in negative product reviews were “disappointed” or “disappointment”. This signifies that issues with products are often about them not meeting consumer expectations, not that they’re necessarily bad products.

These type of negative reviews help the buying decisions of others, encouraging those who do want what other customers found disappointing to purchase, despite the “negative” reviews. You could have a great product, which just wasn’t what someone was expecting. Perhaps the negative review was about the price, which might not be a problem for other consumers viewing the product.

Learn from the feedback

There are lots of different ways to learn from negative reviews. As mentioned above, the low rating could be due to reasons that don’t reflect a fault, but instead are down to personal preference or requirements.

See this customer review below for a pair of gloves. The customer gives the product a low rating, but is helpful enough to explain the reason for the negative rating. The reviewer actually states that they would have given the gloves a good review if they’d wanted them for warmth in dry weather. It’s the lack of waterproofing that lets the product down, in their opinion.


Learn from useful reviews like this and consider where you could make this clear to future customers, so the expectations of the buyer are met.

Monitor reviews and respond where necessary

Some customer reviews are short and sweet, some are in-depth and informative, and others can be aggressive and even unreasonable. It’s a good idea to be to monitor your reviews and respond where necessary. If there are clear issues that need to be addressed, a quick response will be appreciated by consumers, whilst answering any common questions that come from negative reviews will help customers to trust your brand.

A numbers game: encourage more reviews

According to Yotpo, only 14% of customer reviews are 3 stars or less. Positive reviews account for the large majority and, therefore, encouraging more reviews will help you to further outweigh your negative products reviews with positive ones.

Encourage customers to review your products by incentivising users, rewarding repeat reviewers and sending post-purchase emails asking customers how they enjoyed their recent purchases. Also, make submitting product reviews easier and forms mobile-friendly, as mobile shopping continues to grow.

Provide more criteria to help the decision-making process

If negative reviews reveal any issues you have with products being difficult to use, you might be wise to curate how-to videos or add unboxing reviews and tutorials, using UGC tools like Videoly. Adding further criteria, visual content and useful information to your product pages assists consumer decision making.

ASOS is a trailblazer for delivering great customer service and UX-friendly product pages. Here’s an example of the tactics the brand uses to help customers make the right product choice. The images below show a clear offer for help with product sizing and then a tool which gives you a recommended size and calculates the percentage of people buying a particular size with a similar profile to you (adding “that didn’t return it”).


These tactics lead to a reduction in bad reviews, as customers will more often than not get the products they expected, which helps turn more browsers into buyers and increase your conversions. ASOS’ easy package tracking and returns policy help too!

Address issues and implement changes

If you get recurring negative product reviews that show a pattern of an inherent problem with a particular product or even your customer service, make sure you act quickly to address the problem. Make the required changes either to your product proposition or your customer service and processes, which will help to decrease negative reviews.

Consider chatbots to improve customer service

Chatbots can enable brands to deliver better browsing experiences for shoppers and assist with decision making. Customers who get a quick answer from the brand’s customer support about a product they’re considering buying, or have bought and discovered an issue, are less likely to write a negative review.

Retailers are seeing the benefit of AI assistants and enhanced customer support, whilst consumers are used to instant messenger apps and interacting with people via chat features. Would you rather get a quick answer or be on hold waiting for a support operative.

Buying behaviours are changing fast and chatbots are becoming more relevant to today’s shopper.

Last Mile Delivery: How to Efficiently Deliver to High Expectations

Neopost Shipping will be exhibiting at this year’s expo. The article below originally appeared on the Neopost website.

In today’s world, traffic is faster, food delivery is held to incredibly quick standards and when we order something online – we expect it at our door within two days.

Many companies are struggling to keep up, and their customer service is lacking when they fall short. Indications are that accelerated demands will become normalized. In fact, a recent Logistics Viewpoints report shows that 50 percent of millennials still desire even quicker deliveries.

According to the “State of Shipping in Commerce” report from Temando, many retailers are intent on expanding shipping and delivery options to keep up with how Amazon has revolutionized fulfillment, but the shoppers they are looking to satisfy are expecting more — and sooner.

“We’re noticing a huge push and pressure on the fulfillment side to get orders turned around on a much faster scale and pace than a lot of technology is capable of doing today,” says Michael Armanious, vice president of sales and marketing at Datex Corporation, a third-party logistics (3PL) management and warehouse solutions provider. “What normally would have taken less than an hour, all of the sudden needs to go out within minutes, which poses challenges in terms of planning.”

The truth is that customers want a window of delivery within a few hours, a “hyperlocal” last-mile initiative that companies are finding difficult to deploy. “By the time the order comes in, it has to be processed and ready to go for us to meet that very narrow window,” adds Armanious.

Last mile delivery is defined as ‘the movement of goods from a transportation hub to the final delivery destination’ – typically a personal residence – and is becoming more important than ever due to the surge of online ordering. The focus of last mile logistics is to deliver items to the end user when they expect it – which is as fast as possible. Last mile logistics has become an important area of interest for retailers because of the growing demand for fully integrated omnichannel retailing.

Evolving omnichannel needs have made retailers evaluate their current transportation network capabilities and adjust accordingly.

This year more than 40 percent of all e-commerce purchases will be made on Amazon – according to an eMarketer estimate. They have set the standard for fast shipping with their Amazon Prime subscribers and continue to rank high in customer service satisfaction. The online behemoth announced recently a new Amazon Delivery Service Partner program, which is designed to let entrepreneurs run with their own local delivery networks of up to 40 vans, all proudly displaying the Prime logo.

Amazon currently has 75 stations in the US where Amazon.com packages are sent to and picked up by drivers. Algorithms determine which packages are sent there and which are sent to other delivery partners like FedEx and UPS.

“This is all about scaling cost effectively,” said Dave Clark, senior vice president of Amazon Worldwide Operations. He says that the program is “much more about customer experience and meeting overall growth. We think this is going to be a cost-effective way to do that.”

This program brings more of the costs and customer service under the control of Amazon, and the smaller entrepreneurs get to operate under the giant company’s name. Amazon said that the program is aimed to enable hundreds of small businesses to get started and will hire tens of thousands of new delivery drivers countrywide. Given the current trucker shortage and carrier strikes in the US, transportation costs are on the rise for many businesses, and this solution helps to lower them.

Not only are final mile logistics expensive when it comes to assets and providers, but a poor home delivery experience can also have a negative impact on a brand’s reputation. In many cases, the last mile delivery is the first “personal contact” between the consumer and the product. Was the packaging damaged? Was the delivery driver rude? Did he deliver within the window of time I asked for? Many different situations can turn an otherwise positive perception into a negative. Almost 100% of shoppers also say they would like delivery date estimates, yet more than half of retailers currently don’t offer this feature.

Rightly so, the focus placed on last mile delivery is important because, in many cases, this could be your key differentiator. Organizations like Amazon Prime, Amazon Now, and Wayfair have set precedent. Consumers can choose to shop anywhere they want and easily find product alternatives from other retailers – which is why it is so important to provide exceptional service and gain market share while building brand loyalty.

So what do companies need to think about when creating a successful last mile delivery model?

One, think beyond geography. Hyperlocal doesn’t only mean coverage of one specific region. The most successful hyperlocal strategies have the capability to scale. A strategy that focuses on a single “locality” will be difficult to scale in other areas. Being able to identify a widespread but local need and having a model that adapts to each new market will be crucial.

Two, identify an abundance of locations to use as “fulfillment centers.” For instance, distribution centers (DC’s) aren’t the only sites you can utilize to ship orders out of. In fact, if you only use DC’s, you’re already behind. Step up your omnichannel strategy and use your suppliers/manufacturers to drop ship, utilize third party logistics companies for additional help and definitely bring your stores into the mix. Did you know that Kohl’s reduced delivery time by ½ day on each delivery by employing their stores as fulfillment centers? (Forrester, 2017)

Three, think about using a variety of carriers, and don’t discount the smaller ones. Together, local, regional and national carriers create a perfect mix of delivery options and capabilities. In fact, smaller local carriers account for almost 60% of the U.S. trucking industry and can typically transport shipments from 80-100 miles within a specified zone. They are great for parcel last mile delivery as they are able to provide personalized, caring service for clients. Regional carriers are great for shippers with multiple distribution centers and a high concentration of customers within a geographical market. They also typically have wider time schedules for pick-up and delivery and often provide next-day deliveries.

Four, don’t just focus on what your competitors are doing, unless you can do it better. It may be easy to replicate a competitor’s strategy, but it’s not always a model that will work for you as well. Each company and each company’s customer base is different. Find a distinguishing angle of your own, because people love niche. Focus on doing what you’re able to do, and do it well.

Five, learn how to say ‘no’. It’s easy to think that you can do this, and this and this too, but you will never be able to please everyone all at once, even with a last mile delivery plan that you think is perfect. Stick to your strategy and tweak it only when necessary.

The opportunities lying ahead are huge. Logistics providers need to position themselves for the upcoming radical change and readjust their existing networks accordingly. The differentiator in this field will be technology. It will be the leading driver as to what companies can do for their customers. Updated technology will manage workflows, direct the customer experience and provides visibility to all parties.

The end consumer will see the difference in the form of a package on their front step, days, even hours, after ordering. You’ll see the difference in the form of increased speed, efficiency and revenue.

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Why it’s Time Your eCommerce Business Moved to the Cloud

Teledata will be exhibiting at this year’s eCommerce Show North.  The article below originally appeared on their website and was written by James Burns.

Many hosting providers offer what they describe as eCommerce hosting or eCommerce-optimised hosting. However, these solutions can be built on very different technologies and offer very different levels of performance and reliability.

Examples include shared server hosting and VPS hosting at the lower end, while more high-end providers will sell dedicated servers as an eCommerce hosting solution.

However, in many cases the limitations of these traditional hosting options can hinder the performance of an online store – a significant disadvantage in the ultra-competitive world of online retail.

For instance, in January 2018 Google formally announced their “Speed Update” which will take into account mobile device page speed as another factor in how websites are ranked in the search results. This update will be rolled out in July 2018 and is designed to weed out the slowest sites.

And while your website may not be affected greatly, it’s now more important than ever that your website performs at its best, especially for mobile. Not only could poor performance affect you negatively in the rankings but it could also prevent visitors from getting to your website in the first place, and upset brand reputation for your eCommerce business. According to research done by Google in 2017, the average loading speed for a landing page on a mobile is 22 seconds – however, it was also revealed that 53% people will leave a mobile site if the page takes more than three seconds to load.

Another study showed that a delay in page loading time or poor website performance could contribute to a 7% reduction in conversion rates – meaning every delay would cost your online business.

For our part, we think the advantages of cloud hosting make it a platform that’s well worth considering – whether you’re making your first move into the world of online trading, or you’re looking to overhaul your current eCommerce hosting arrangements. Read on to learn why.

Cloud offers on-demand scalability

One of the causes of poor performance is that a server is overloaded. There are two possible solutions that could help solve this issue:

Invest in a high-spec dedicated server – Some retailers still choose to invest in high-spec dedicated servers on the expectation that this will give them enough resource to meet demands at their highest. However, this “over-spec” strategy is not very cost-effective – you’re playing for resources that may well remain unused for the majority of the hardware’s lifespan. Nor is it particularly flexible in terms of future growth – if your store takes off in a dramatic way, you’re still going to be facing a time-consuming migration (or expensive load-balancing act).

Invest in an agile cloud server – The cloud on the other hand provides increased agility, allowing retailers to provision more server resources at peak times (such as during high-traffic events like Black Friday), and then scale down again when demand returns to normal levels. This unique advantage of cloud hosting allows you to more closely align your monthly costs with your resources usage – much more cost effective in the long-run, especially for a small-to-medium sized eCommerce business.

Speed and consistent performance

In comparison to shared server and VPS hosting, the cloud option wins hands down. When hosted on a cloud platform, your store will be able to draw all the resources it needs from a large reserve of memory, processing power and storage. Gone are the performance limitations of a single machine, with its hard-limits on resources – all of which were shared by other hosting customers, competing for their share of the hardware.

Dedicated servers on the other hand are sometimes considered to offer more consistent performance than cloud, but this isn’t really noticeable in practice and the scalability of cloud makes it much easier to fine-tune performance anyway. For instance, if a lack of CPU or memory hinders your dedicated server’s performance, you can upgrade or replace the hardware, but this comes at a cost, both in terms of purchase price and downtime during implementation. With a cloud server, however, adding or removing resources is easier and won’t incur the significant, permanent costs associated with a hardware upgrade.


A less obvious but equally important consideration for an ecommerce business is that most cloud architectures are inherently more resilient than other forms of hosting.

For example, many cloud server hosting providers have some degree of redundancy built into their platforms – helping prevent downtime due to hardware failures.

Compared to relying on a single server, a cloud platform will enlist resources from any number of physical servers, where, if one fails, it will simply restart on another host, causing as little disruption as possible. For any business, this level of redundancy is important, but the 24/7 nature of an eCommerce website – where an outage can result in lost sales and revenue – makes automated fail-over a key advantage.

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What is Downtime Costing Your eCommerce Business?

Teledata will be exhibiting at this year’s eCommerce Show North.  The article below originally appeared on their website and was written by James Burns.

Most businesses face an impact to their top or bottom line when their websites go down.

Few, however, are more directly affected by downtime than online retailers, where it causes revenue to grind to a halt and customers to take their business to competing websites.

Here, we take a look at how the costs of eCommerce downtime break down, as well as some of the steps online retailers and their partner agencies can take to combat unplanned outages.

The direct cost of eCommerce downtime

A number of studies have attempted to put a concrete figure on the cost of downtime, both in eCommerce and elsewhere. One of the best-known benchmarks is from the Ponemon Institute, which in 2016 showed the average cost of an outage across all sectors to be around $740,000 (£536,000). In eCommerce, the figure was higher still at $758,000.

For an ecommerce business, perhaps the most obvious starting point for counting the cost of downtime is to look at the direct impact on your revenue for a given period. How much would you lose in straight sales if your site was unavailable for one, two, three hours – maybe even an afternoon? For some of you reading this, the figure will run into the thousands of pounds.

Of course, even at this basic level, the cost of an hour’s disruption will vary. Perhaps the most diligent (and frightening!) exercise here is to look at the cost of downtime to you during peak online shopping hours/seasons and weight it accordingly – particularly if you rely on such key periods for a healthy bottom line.

Once you have a basic hourly figure, it’s possible to get an idea of risk exposure with your current eCommerce hosting provider by looking at their uptime SLA (this calculator may help you to get a clearer picture). However, remember that SLAs can be missed, and that downtime or sluggish store performance can also be caused by other factors such as heavy server load – a common problem for online stores at peak times, when their earning potential is highest.

Indirect costs – lost productivity, recovery and more

An ecommerce business can also incur a wide range of indirect costs from a serious downtime incident. Consider the following, for example:

Lost productivity: For as long as the incident lasts, some staff may be unable to do their jobs and others may have to focus on firefighting (such as answering calls from concerned customers) and other low-value work. If your business is a digital agency that builds and runs eCommerce websites for its own clients, this can be an even more significant cost factor as you pour resources into smoothing things over with your customer base.

Cost of recovery: Downtime can be caused by many different factors, and not all of them are as simple to recover from as others. In some cases, you may need to tap into expert resource to restore from backups, solve complex software problems and so on.

Reputational damage: In the ultra-competitive world of eCommerce, there’s no reason for inconvenienced customers not to flock to other websites and stay there – costing you both in terms of new and repeat business.

Damage to SEO: It’s easy to overlook, but downtime can also impact your search performance and therefore prevent shoppers from getting to your website for a time even after the incident has been resolved.

3 tips to combat eCommerce downtime

So what can an eCommerce business do to protect itself against the potential cost and reputational damage of an outage?

Thankfully, there are a few different steps you can take to ensure your website (or, in the digital agency scenario, your clients’ websites) isn’t more exposed to the risk of downtime than it needs to be. Here are three of our top tips:

Look at your hosting platform. Is it a good fit for your website in terms of expected traffic numbers (both now and in the future), hardware redundancy and backup provision? The quick and easy scalability of a cloud platform, for example, lends itself well to eCommerce businesses that experience seasonal demand or forecast rapid growth. We recommend you familiarise yourself on the differences between shared, VPS, cloud server hosting and dedicated server hosting in particular.

What level of uptime can your hosting provider realistically deliver? What’s their SLA – and, more importantly, is it backed up by high-quality infrastructure? (Any provider can say they offer a particular number of nines in their SLA, but only the best ones will be able to talk confidently about the technical controls they use to back this up.)

Can you rely on your hosting provider for fast and high-quality support to solve the problem? It may not be the first thing you think of when sourcing a hosting platform, but no provider is immune to downtime – so it makes sense to look for one that can show you glowing references from happy customers to demonstrate their value at a time of crisis. The ultimate “try before you buy” test? Give your prospective provider’s support team a call and see how easily you can get through to someone that can help. If or when disruption occurs, you need the process of getting authoritative help to be as simple and fast as possible.

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Why LinkedIn is the King of Organic

Digital Media Team will be exhibiting at this year’s eCommerce Show North. This post was written by guest blogger Lucy Thorpe and originally appeared on the Digital Media Team website.

You might think of LinkedIn as somewhere that only job hunters, recruiters and sales people hang out, but did you know that there are 9 billion content impressions in LinkedIn feeds every week?

This content is generated by just 3 million users, so as share of voice goes, it’s a great way to reach a huge audience with less competitive conversation than say, Google or Facebook.

People spend time on other social networks, but they invest time in LinkedIn, seeking content that helps them to solve a professional problem. According to stats from LinkedIn, 80% of B2B leads come from LinkedIn. This is why 92% of B2B marketers leverage LinkedIn over all social platforms and 94% of B2B marketers use LinkedIn to distribute content.

The professional social network is also fantastic for generating traffic to your website – 46% of social media coming into B2B company sites comes from, you guessed it, LinkedIn.

But it’s not just about B2B. LinkedIn has 450 million professionals who use the site and stats from the social network reveal that it’s become a destination where people consume high-quality content from professional publishers – think The Wall Street Journal or The Economist – who are sharing content into their feed. In short, the audience on LinkedIn are primed and ready for relevant information that they can use to help them succeed.

The different types of content that can be shared across LinkedIn is extensive, ranging from long-form pieces of content such as whitepapers to images, news, videos, status updates, slides, podcasts and external articles. You can also contribute to groups to join conversation in your industry. Hashtags also work on the site, so you can help your audience find your organic content more easily and grow your brand awareness.


Another reason why LinkedIn is the king of organic is the ability to publish long-form content as an influencer – alongside legendary business heroes such as Bill Gates and Richard Branson. This can be a key tool to increase engagement and traction on your content – according to a study by Google consumers check 10 pieces of content before they make a purchase decision, so it’s important that your prospective customer can find your content easily when they’re ready to make that decision.Content can also be shared through your LinkedIn Company Page and specific Showcase Pages to increase your organic reach. These tools are free to establish brand awareness and thought leadership. By sharing relevant information, perspectives and product information to reflect your company’s vision you can help your customers find your content, without having to spend a penny on targeting or sponsored content.

Also, did you know that SlideShare is also part of LinkedIn? With 70 million unique visitors per month, the site is one of the top 100 most-visited websites in the world and the world’s largest professional content-sharing community. 80% of visitors to SlideShare find content through organic search (20% from Google alone) that takes them directly to the information they’re looking for.


It’s the perfect organic opportunity to showcase content such as presentations, portfolios, conference talks and webinars to raise brand awareness and thought leadership alongside your LinkedIn presence. The visual aspect of SlideShare can resonate more quickly with some viewers than text heavy posts too.

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Two Jay Joins Together Group

Two Jay will be exhibiting at this year’s eCommerce Show North.

We’ve been busy working behind the scenes and we’re so pleased to finally be able to share our exciting news!

Two Jay has joined forces with nine other award-winning founder-led consultancies and agencies to form an agile strategy, eCommerce and digital-experiences powerhouse, called Together Group.

This is because we believe in the power of collaboration. In an increasingly advanced and competitive environment, it would be naive of us to think that one company can truly serve the whole complexity of customer’s needs on their own… but Together we can.

As a Magento Enterprise Partner, we will combine our specialism in development with the specialisms of our new partners who are the best in business in terms of design and UX. Forming a ‘share swap’ partnership that will enable us to provide holistic and innovative solutions that best meet our clients’ needs, throughout every part of their eCommerce journey.

“Being part of an innovative model which supports all aspects of eCommerce is very exciting for ourselves and our clients while partnering with like-minded brand-led global agencies offers the potential to accelerate our global expansion.” Jamie Jackson, Two Jay Founder


Specialising in purpose-driven digital transformation for fashion, beauty, hospitality, and other premium consumer and lifestyle brands, partners are handpicked based on their impressive portfolios. Together Group partners include Sweden Unlimited, a New York-based eCommerce creative agency who craft digital experiences for brands such as Estee Lauder, Chanel, W Hotels and Kate Spade, to name but a few. Folk Commerce, a design agency who work with Hermès, Amanda Wakeley and Paco Rabanne. Plus, London-based agencies Skywire and 5XThinking an eCommerce and digital consultancy. All led under their appointed global CEO and former CEO of Porsche Design Group, Dr Christian Kurtzke.

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Magento Open Source Versus Magento Commerce

Two Jay will be exhibiting at this year’s eCommerce Show North.

Which platform is right for your business?

Magento rebranded its product suite in June 2017, renaming and reconfiguring the three primary Magento platforms into two. Magento Community Edition is now known as Magento Open Source, whilst Magento Enterprise and Magento Cloud Edition become Magento Commerce.

All versions of Magento share the same core code base with Enterprise adding additional licensed features. This provides a secure and scalable solution for your eCommerce business and a potential migration path between versions. Which Magento platform you choose really depends on your business needs and future growth plans. With so much varying advice out there, we appreciate it’s not an easy decision.

So, if you’re looking to migrate to or build on Magento, we’re hoping to provide a bit more clarity on which version is the right one for you.

Magento Open Source for Start-ups and Small Businesses

Magento Open Source provides all the basic performance and features needed to run an eCommerce store. It is the license free version of Magento which makes it more accessible for startup businesses and small businesses who are potentially new to the industry or have a limited budget. Although this version does not have the same capabilities as Magento Commerce, it can be customised through additional extensions or custom development.

Both Open Source and Commerce users can take advantage of Magento 2’s improved capabilities including Varnish caching, browser caching, asynchronous processing, and page minification and merging. Plus, they have the same access to the Magento Marketplace, which enables you to purchase additional Magento 2 extensions to further your website functionality.

Despite this, Open Source will not scale operationally as you grow which may cause issues in terms of offering eCommerce service in the future, and it does not offer Magento’s support (which means you will have no assistance if your platform crashes… even if it’s in the middle of Black Friday!) It’s also important to note that, whilst it is entirely possible to upgrade from Magento Open Source to Magento Commerce, the ease of doing this will be impacted by the amount of customisation which has taken place. For example, not all third party modules are compatible with Enterprise and as a result of this some refactoring may be required.

In summary, we believe this is the ideal platform for startups and smaller businesses and despite its drawbacks, there are a number of well-known retailers who’ve managed to adapt their Open Source website to keep up with their growing requirements and customer expectations.

Magento Commerce for ambitious and Established Businesses

For businesses looking for something more secure and operationally scalable than Magento Open Source, Magento Commerce offers a more robust option with enterprise-level features right out of the box. Depending on the size of your business, Magento Commerce is available in two monthly pricing tiers, the Starter subscription starts at $1,999 per month, whilst the Pro subscription starts at $3,399. Each plan includes support and Cloud-based hosting and infrastructure, which means Magento will handle any hosting challenges such as redundancy, disaster recovery and dynamic scaling.

Whilst marketing tools can be integrated with Open Source, Magento Commerce boasts a range of advanced marketing tools including content scheduling, dynamic customer segmentation, cart abandonment emails and personalisation tools which have seen users increase sales significantly.

The Magento Commerce admin also allows return and exchange rules, and other customer service features such as gift wrap options, wish lists, gift cards and store credit. Vital features for any brand interested in improving their brand loyalty and increasing repeat sales.

Not only this, Magento is constantly improving their platform through ongoing research and development, so if you have an enterprise license you will benefit from this and get immediate access to any new features they implement.

Magento Commerce is designed for larger organisations and is ideal for those who require reliability and availability. It offers one native platform for B2C and B2B with the option to add as many storefronts as you want. For B2B retailers it is the ideal option as it includes everything you need to manage B2B sites for multiple brands, channel partners, or key accounts.

In Summary

When considering what functionality you will need it’s important to consider the next 5 years. For ambitious retailers, Open Source will have some restraints, and it is important to understand what additional extensions would need to be installed and what custom development would need to be undertaken to allow your business to keep up with its potential growth. Extensions are ‘bolted onto the outside’ of the application, which means they will be less integrated to other core features which could potentially cause issues. However, whilst it may not be our preferred option Magento Open Source is a brilliant platform for brands who want to get online quickly and build as they grow.

The platform we recommend to the majority of our customers is Magento Commerce – it’s the most robust and scalable of the two, as well as being a 100% open for customisation. It allows merchants to work on a better basis with supported functionalities and a cleaner code which is more adapted to high demands of traffic and revenue. It’s also good to bear in mind that the extra investment in a higher specification platform is often outweighed by a reduction in maintenance costs, as Magento Commerce merchants will require fewer developers for daily maintenance of the platform.

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The Warehouse Space Challenge in eCommerce

LogistCompare will be exhibiting at this year’s eCommerce Show North.

As the eCommerce business continues to increase, retailers need more storage space to grow. With the current demand volatility, faster delivery time and shortage of warehouse space available, being closer to the customer is now becoming essential.

New smaller satellite facilities have been created to facilitate the drive for convenience: faster delivery times is now an integral part of the last mile process.

Whether small sheds or larger hubs, location is of paramount importance. A major factor in identifying suitable warehouse locations is the quality of access to and from the site.

Depending from the retailer requirements, warehouses need to be located in the right spot to be able not only to supply the customer but also to receive goods from suppliers.

For the traditional “brick and mortar” retailers, the implementation of such development, brings a lot of pressure across the supply chain which was originally designed to replenish only a few stores on a regular basis. Accessing volatile space to supply customer demands becomes a real challenge.

We estimate that the UK has over 400m sq ft of warehouse space. It then comes as no surprise that the retail sector occupies 85m sq ft of this space for high street and homewares retailers and 62m sq ft food retailers. It is also important to mention that the online retail sector currently accounts for 8.5m sq ft of space and still continues to grow.

The availability of big hubs has fallen by 75% since 2010 with only 2.6m sq ft of space available across UK, while there is just 17m Sq ft space currently under construction.

The world of warehousing is becoming quite unrecognisable. A vast underground warehouse near Heathrow has received planning permission. Amazon has announced plans to use a 580-acre lake as a submerged warehouse for goods.

As retailers increasingly move their business on-line, warehouse flexibility becomes an essential component in meeting their customers’ requirements. Whether it’s a large or small shed, the warehouse needs to cope with the volatility of the customer demand. Seasonal demand is not limited to online retailers. This inevitably brings serious pressure on warehouse capacity, potentially damaging both the possibility to maximise sales returns during peak times and retailer reputation.

Disruptive technology has given the opportunity to provide customers with easy solutions to better their shopping experience. Visibility allows them to locate their products, buy what and when they want and access their products easily and conveniently.

Online business also brings a high level of flexibility when dealing with returns. On-line customers value a faster return process. This can be facilitated by either the use of a local store or fast return to warehouses. This puts a lot of pressure on hubs to maintain availability of both large vehicles and smaller vans or even motorbikes and scooters.

Finding the right warehouse space to accommodate the current e-commerce client is becoming a challenge especially when lack of space availability is the biggest culprit. Technology is now allowing portals to support customers with this process.

The latest and most advanced portals able to support the “Race for Space” is LogistCompare. This online portal that brings together customers looking for storage space and warehouse providers. The portal is interactive and therefore able to offer a direct communication between providers and customers. The platform provides a selection of warehouse options and costs, allows customers to request customised quotations and provides live visibility of available space in the warehouse. It’s currently free to use to retailers.

For a long time retailers have rightly focused their efforts merely in selling their products to clients. With the change in the shopping behaviour, retailers need to turn their attention to these crucial areas: cost, location, flexibility and immediacy. All these can be addressed by the right warehouse solution.

Nublue Announces Trio of New Client Wins

Nublue will be exhibiting at this year’s eCommerce show North, you can learn more about them here.

North west based eCommerce agency Nublue has announced its latest client wins which see the Magento experts working with suppliers of batteries, gas equipment, fashion accessories and lifestyle products. In the last month the agency has signed up 100% Peak Power, Hamilton Gas Products and A Gift from The Gods, all UK based retailers who have turned to Nublue to help them grow their online sales.

Headquartered in Northern Ireland, family owned and run Hamilton Gas Products specialise in the distribution of gas equipment and installation materials throughout the UK and Ireland. Their clients include Calor Gas, the leading supplier and distributor of LPG (Liquefied Petroleum Gas) in Ireland. Nublue will be upgrading their current site to improve functionality, customer experience and to increase conversion rates.

Lydia Grigoriadou, Hamilton Gas Products Digital Marketing Manager said: “We were looking for an agency that specialises in Magento 2. After reading all Nublue’s customer reviews, we had decided this was the one.”

Battery suppliers 100% Peak Power have joined with Nublue to design and build a new transactional website on Magento 2, the latest version of the platform. Manufacturing and supplying the most common batteries such as AA and AAA, 100% Peak Power also offers a large range of specialist batteries such as alkaline, rechargeable, lithium and carbon zinc products for use in all electronic appliances.

Trading online and in independent boutiques and selected high street retailers, London based A Gift from the Gods have teamed with Nublue on a retainer basis, to help improve their online presence and continued development with Magento 2.

Nublue’s Managing Director Michael Ashworth is delighted with the new projects: “I’m very pleased that Nublue continues to develop with the successful introduction of our Magento Development Retainers which allow us to work with exciting brands on a long-term basis, acting as an extension of their team and helping them to grow and realise their online goals”.

Nublue was promoted to Professional Partner status with Magento earlier this year which is the result of closer and more successful collaboration with the platform. Investment in Magento 2 training is an ongoing priority, complimenting the Certified Solution Specialists Nublue already has. Magento Commerce is a leading provider of cloud commerce innovation to merchants and brands across B2C and B2B industries, with 260,000+ clients include JCB, Kurt Geiger, Monin, Coca Cola and Seat.

Nublue has worked with Magento since its launch in 2008 and provides design, development, hosting and support services. The agency’s development retainer service offer has proven popular since its launch in 2017, allowing both new and existing clients engineer their online growth by creating long-term plans to implement ideas and strategies designed to improve conversion rates. Katy Wilson, Channel Development Manager for Magento said: “Congratulations to Nublue for achieving Professional Partner status. Their dedication and collaborative approach has seen the results and we are excited to see what this new level of partnership brings.”

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now for eCommCon

Lancaster eCommerce agency Nublue are hosting eCommCon, an eCommerce Conference on January 30th and have collected a host of top quality partners to speak.

Aimed at serious eCommerce professionals looking for innovative ways to increase their online conversions, attendees will hear from industry experts delivering insightful talks, debates and real-life case studies focussing on how to increase online conversions.

The high profile, expert speaker lineup includes:

  • Skip Fidura, Dotmailer – email marketing
  • Rory Gilmore, Nosto – personalized shopping experiences
  • Fjolla Bakalli, Loyalty Lion – eCommerce loyalty platform
  • Robin Lewis, Feefo – genuine user reviews
  • Stuart Pick, Brightpearl – centralised operations
  • Robin Hill, Rapidspike – website performance monitoring
  • Richy Aldred, Barclaycard – payment innovations
  • Robyn Potter, Temando – eCommerce fulfilment
  • Neil McKay, Endless Gain – biometrics & psychology

Martyn Collins, Exhibition Director at eCommerce Show North will also be present to reveal details of this year’s eCommerce exhibition to be held at EventCity on Oct 10 & 11. 

now to book your place at https://www.nublue.co.uk/ecommcon/


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Advansys, Maginus, Remind2Find and More

This week, our eCommerce Matters update features six of the biggest eCommerce companies in the industry. Pricesearcher explain why visual search is becoming more and more popular, Maginus announced that three of their core eCommerce solutions have been highly acclaimed in the Forrester Wave Report, Remind2Find provide 5 great reasons why you should use their service, MPP Global share 8 advantages of moving from legacy ERP to Cloud SaaS, Nettl explore the latest GDPR changes and Advansys explain why eCommerce traders need to integrate their business with eBay.


Voice search and Image search are becoming more and more popular where they are considered more convenient to use than text search. For example, it is more efficient to use voice search when you’re driving or image search if you’ve seen an item of clothing you like and managed to take a photo. You can learn more here.


This week, Maginus announced that three of their core eCommerce solutions have been highly acclaimed in the 2017 Forrester Wave Report. The report identifies 11 B2B eCommerce providers as being the most significant B2B commerce suite providers. Find out more, here.


Remind2Find can help you give the best gifts for your family and friends – using reminders that are packed with personalised inspiration on what each person likes. They have put together a list of 5 great reasons for using Remind2Find. You can read more, here.

MPP Global

Publishers’ business revolves around print, the core infrastructure does not support the dynamism required to compete in a digital-first world. Publishers can embrace innovative SaaS/Cloud technology and benefit from a whole host of advantages, the most significant being huge reductions in CapEx and OpEx. You can find MPP Global’s 8 advantages of Moving from Legacy ERP to Cloud SaaS to Power Paid Content Initiatives, here.


If your business uses email marketing, sends direct mail or makes sales calls, the law is changing what you can and can’t do. From 25th May 2018, General Data Protection Regulations – or GDPR – come into force. Nettl have put together an article explaining everything you need to know. Learn more, here.


eBay is the world’s largest online shopping platform. Advansys have put together an article explaining why eCommerce traders need to integrate their business with eBay and use their eBay Store design to attract new customers. Find out more, here.

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UKFast, Exact Abacus and Business Growth Hub

Find the latest eCommerce news and updates from the sector’s thought leaders in our ‘eCommerce Matters’ series. Exact Abacus shares 5 top reasons why your visitors are not converting into customers, UKFast give their advice for decreasing UX Friction and making a customer’s purchasing journey as smooth as possible and Business Growth Hub asked Peter Marshall, CMO at Add People to share his tips for business owners looking to understand PPC and SEO.

Exact Abacus

It is important to remember that every missed opportunity to a conversion is a lost sale that you may never be able to recover. If your website isn’t converting as well as you believe it should, it’s vital that you take actions to rectify these issues. Exact Abacus have set out to help you get to the root of the problems you may be experiencing with 5 of the top conversion killers that are stopping your visitors converting into customers. Read more, here.


UX Friction confuses customers, leads to abandoned carts and lost trust. That’s why it’s so important to make the entire customer journey as frictionless as possible. UKFast give their advice to ensure that from the moment a customer searches for your business to the customer becoming a brand advocate, the journey is as smooth as possible. Read more, here.

Business Growth Hub

Investing in digital marketing will help you increase your online visibility and in turn increase your web traffic and sales. One of the most effective types of digital marketing is being listed in online searches, with PPC and SEO as the main routes to choose. Peter Marshall, CMO at Add People shares his tips for business owners looking to understand PPC and SEO. You can read more, here.

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PRWD, Pure360, Dotmailer and More

This week, our eCommerce Matters series shares the latest news and advice from our exhibition partners. Mediacom ask some of the advertising industry’s biggest players what they would change about their industry, Dotmailer share a few tips that’ll help you get your customers to open, and act on, your emails, PRWD share 10 useful tips for using DevTools and Pure360 explore a variety of tactics you can use to give your re-engagement emails a winning edge.

What would you change about the advertising industry? MediaCOM ask some of the advertising industry’s biggest players what they think. You can find out more, here.

It is important to measure email success not just with the number of opened emails, but the number of opened emails that then result in some kind o action: a sale or a lead. In this article, Dotmailer share a few tips that’ll help you open your mind to new and exciting ways to get your customers to open, and act on, your emails. Read more, here.

Google Developer Tools (DevTools) are a set of web authoring and debugging tools built within Google Chrome. In this article, PRWD share 10 useful tips within DevTools. You can read more, .

Earning new customers tend to be more expensive than retaining existing ones, therefore sending re-engagement emails to reactivate lapsed customers is a no-brainer. Pure360 put together this article exploring a variety of tactics you can use to give your re-engagement emails a winning edge. You can read more, here.

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Manchester’s emerging ecommerce platform Shopit is able to announce that it is to collaborate with the first new additions to its Premier Partner programme.

Award winning North West agencies Klick n Tap and Lo & Behold will offer Shopit websites to their ecommerce clients, as an alternative to established brands like Magento and Woocommerce.

It’s another major boost for the fast moving software house, which is set to make its first public appearance at eCommerce Show North on October 11th and 12th at Event City.

Startup to watch

As one of the ten ‘startups to watch’ selected by Tech North, Shopit will be offering demo workshops to agencies and clients alike, to show how the platform delivers proper efficiencies and organisation to the fast and furious world of ecommerce.
The 2 newest Premier Partners have already highlighted a number of ways that their agency is going to benefit from offering Shopit as an option.

Faster turnarounds
The two agencies, which are established players in the digital sector, were impressed by the versatility and speed of build when they trialled the new system.
“We’ve already seen a distinct and measurable improvement in our efficiencies”, explains Kit Hargreaves of Klick N Tap, which has offices in both Manchester and Hull.
“A Shopit site is quicker and easier to put together than Magento CE, and we can bill at the same rates because it matches the functionality. Clients are seeing faster turnaround times too.”

Creative Freedom
Fellow agency owner Dave Bowers of Lo & Behold was impressed by the creative freedom that the platform enables.
“As a design agency, the freedom to be creative is important to our identity as people and as a solution provider”, he explains.
“We begin each web project with client workshops to explore the brand, what’s being offered and the client’s motivations. Shopit gives us that freedom – to code front ends however and in whatever codebase we want.”

Closer Support
Bowers also highlighted the benefit of being able to work closely with a local software house on a new system, as it allows them to be much more responsive to client needs and issues.
“Working with the Shopit team is a far more collaborative experience than other platforms, which is inspiring. It’s UK – and indeed Manchester – support which makes projects run smoother”.
Meanwhile, Shopit director Adam Pritchard is delighted with the progress of the platform.
“This is a major breakthrough for us as the platform is fast become a recognised brand on the Manchester tech scene”, enthuses Pritchard. “Once they see the platform, our credibility amongst agencies is growing all the time”.
“Alongside our upcoming conference appearance, and our recent nomination for an Digital Entrepreneur Award, it shows we are making real headway as a business this year”.

Shopit will be appearing at the eCommerce Show North on Oct 11th & 12th, at Trafford’s Event City venue.
The winners of the Digital Entrepreneur Awards are announce on the 22nd November.
You can follow them at on Twitter, for updates.


XSellco, Klarna, Pure Clarity and More

This week, our eCommerce Matters series shares the latest tips and insights from our exhibition partners including XSellco, Cheetah Digital, Klarna and Pure Clarity. XSellco chat to our expo director, Martyn Collins about the importance of having an eCommerce expo in the North, Cheetah Digital aim to help you prepare for your Christmas marketing, Klarna share 5 tips for making your website checkout mobile friendly and Pure Clarity explain eCommerce personalisation.

eCommerce Show North is expected to attract 4,000 attendees with more than 120 exhibitors. This week, expo director, Martyn Collins explained to XSellco why it’s high time England’s North-West had it’s own eCommerce expo. You can find the full interview, here.

Cheetah Digital
The end of summer for marketers means that the countdown for the busy holiday season is on. Cheetah Digital have shared 9 Ways to help you prepare for success and increase sales too. You can find out more, here.

A growing amount of shoppers are beginning to purchase with their smartphone or tablet. However, many businesses still lack a mobile friendly website and checkout, failing to address new customer expectations of a smooth buying experience. Klarna have shared 5 tips to make your website checkout more mobile friendly. You can read more, here.

Pure Clarity
What is eCommerce personalisation? Pure Clarity explain the benefits of segmenting customers into multiple profiles, in order to show real-time personalised recommendations and relevant products. You can learn more, here.

Magento, Moltin, Pure360 and More

Our event partners have shared their insights into the world of eCommerce for the latest article in our eCommerce Matters series. SmartConsign put together 3 key steps for gaining an advantage and future-proofing your business, Magento list 5 top takeaways from Walmart’s Shop.org talk, Moltin share how to standardize checkout flow across the web using the new Payment Request API, Enterprise Nation share Pip Jamieson’s tips on finding great employees and how to keep them and Pure360 explore using the urgency as a tool.

Consumer’s expect swift, flawless service and retailers are finding that the best way to meet those expectations is to adopt the drop shipping model of supply or vendor direct fulfilment. One of the few risks for this is that the introduction of a middleman adds another layer of contact in the already complex area of customer service. To mitigate the risk retailers diversify by using a number of drop ship suppliers. SmartConsign have put together 3 Key Steps for gaining an advantage and future-proofing your business. Find out more, here.

Walmart’s President and CEO Marc Lore gave a candid talk at Shop.org sharing some top retail lessons. Magento have put together a list of 5 top takeaways. You can learn more, here.

Moltin share how to standardize checkout flow across the web using the new Payment Request API. You can read more, here.

Enterprise Nation
How to hire the people you need, grow a community and build brand values. Ahead of her talk on how to recruit the best staff and keep them at ScaleUp 2017, Pip Jamieson, founder of The Dots shared some tips on finding great employees, building a community around your business and the importance of strong brand values. You can read more, here.

Urgency is a tried and tested method of compelling people to act, from clicking a link to making a purchase. In this blog, Pure360 share seven different ways travel and retail brands have used countdown timers in their emails, to give you inspiration for how use to this feature. Read more, here.

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Fluid Digital, Endless Gain, Mabo and More

This week, our eCommerce Matters features some of the biggest eCommerce companies in the industry. Endless Gain examine the behaviour of visitors once they’ve clicked through to the landing page, Fluid Digital discuss the pros and cons of selling online, Mabo discuss Google’s shopping result changes and Milklab design a futuristic VR show room.

Endless Gain
Examining the behaviour of visitors once they’ve clicked through to your landing page and beyond give valuable insights into why your site isn’t engaging as it could be. Endless Gain explore how biometric research makes your website the best it can be. Find out more, here.

Fluid Digital
Physical Vs. Digital Products: Pros & Cons of Selling Online. What’s best to sell online, physical or digital products? Fluid Digital have broken down the pros and cons of each to help you decide for yourself. Find out more, here.

Recently Google has implemented a numerical ranking system into Google Shopping results if the words ‘top’ or ‘best’ are used in customer search queries. Find out more, .

Milklab designed a futuristic Virtual Reality show room for KIA. Users wore Oculus Virtual Reality eyeglasses and entered the globe where they had the chance to experience both BR and walking in the fantastic KIA world. You can find out more, here.

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Digitaloft, NuBlue and Bring Digital

Pick up the latest eCommerce news and updates from the sector’s thought leaders in our ‘eCommerce Matters’ series.
Digitaloft share 21 Google hacks, NuBlue explore the importance of effective product photography, Bring Digital share how they achieved 393,000 views of PR coverage in a single day, Space 48 share 10 tips for creating effective eCommerce product pages and MadeByPi put together five frustrations that can easily combine to create a poor user experience on your eCommerce website.

Google is much more than a basic search engine, there are many hidden tricks and features that you probably don’t know about it. Digitaloft have put together this interesting infographic titled ’21 Google Hacks You Never Knew Existed’. You can check out the infographic,

How to combine image and web design to maximise conversion. Effective photography for any eCommerce business can be the difference between a browser and a buyer. Nublue have shared some examples of incredible product shots on forward thinking websites to help inspire you. You can read more, here.

Bring Digital
Bring Digital recently achieved 393,000 views of PR coverage in a single day. Their story was picked up by the likes of The Sun, OK!, The Huffington Post and UniLad with almost 2,000 social shares. You can find out how they did it, here.

Space 48
10 tips for creating effective eCommerce product pages. When looking to increase the performance of your ecommerce website and achieve more conversions, there are many factors to consider. Your product pages are key pages to get right, but there are lots of different elements to optimise. Space 48’s Creative Director, Anna Green offers her insights on how to create highly-effective eCommerce produce pages that really convert. Read more, here.

eCommerce can be a frustrating task to get right, as there are many seemingly small elements which can easily combine to create an unsatisfactory user experience. MadebByPi have collected five frustrations which your eCommerce customer base will find difficult to ignore. Find out more, here.

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Temando, Global Payments, SLI Systems and More

Our ‘eCommerce Matters’ series includes the latest news and insights from our event partners. CTI Digital, explain why software testers are vital, Temando discuss why shipping technology is key to a successful integration, Global Payments take a look back at POS Systems of the past, SLI Systems discuss Amazon’s relationship with online retailers and Digitl want to ensure you’re ready for the christmas rush.

CTI Digital

Why do we need Software testers? This week, CTI Digital explain why software testers are vital for ensuring that the software being delivered meets the specific needs and expectations of the customer. You can read more, here.


Temando’s State of Shipping in Commerce report for the US Markets stated that 54% of shoppers abandoned their cart due to the cost of shipping solutions and 44% will do the same and head to a competitor when a shipping service of their choice is not available. With shipping being one of the main reasons why shipping is abandoned, Temando say that shipping technology is key to a successful integration. Read more, here.

Global Payments

The cloud has changed point-of-sale (POS) technology. Global Payments take a look back at POS systems of the past and how today’s technologists and developers are providing enhanced capabilities and substational operational benefits in the development of POS solutions. Read more, here.

SLI Systems

Amazon: Friend, Foe or Frenemy. Retailers’ Relationship with Amazon is complicated but SLI Systems set out to discover whether Amazon is a friend or foe to e-commerce merchants. You can read more, here.


Are you ready for Christmas yet? Head of Agency at Digitl explains what is expected of online retailers during the festive period and other peak times to ensure they can cope with increased demand. Read more, here.

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UKFast, 3PL, Microsoft and More

Our event partners share their news and insights in the latest article from our ‘eCommerce Matters’ series. Mastermindset discuss bridging the gap between marketing and sales, 3PL share tips for winning customer loyalty, UKFast share five unexpected IoT hacks of 2017, Microsoft discuss IFA 2017 and Statement Agency interview Tom Selby, Founder of Floor Candy.


Mastermindset discuss bridging the gap between marketing and sales. You can read more, here.

3P Logistics

You are able to generate new customers, yet you don’t seem to see them returning. 3PL have put together an article explaining how you can create meaningful connections and create a loyal customer base. Find out more, here.


UKFast shared the five most interesting and unpredictable IoT breaches of 2017, including Hotel Key Cards and even teddy bears. Find out more about these strange hacks, here.


New devices and Windows Mixed Reality headsets unveiled at IFA 2017, Cortana and Alexa collaborate and Skype TX wins an Emmy® Award. Read more, here.

Statement Agency

Statement Agency caught up with Floor Candy’s founder, Tom Selby, to find out why they chose rugs to start their eCommerce adventure and what strategies they’d employed to find their early success. You can read more, here.

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Peoplevox, Pimberly, The Filter and More

This week, our event partners have shared their latest news, updates and insights for our eCommerce Matters series.
Best Response Media share strategy ideas to help improve your CRO, FHL’s MD gives his predictions for the next decade of tech, Peoplevox share the benefits of technology partnerships, The Filter pick apart some eCommerce jargon and Pimberly explain why PIM is the key to eCommerce success.

Best Response Media

Effective Conversion Rate Optimisation (CRO) is about making the signup/purchase process as seamless as possible without compromising your brand or service. Best Response Media have put together some strategy ideas to help you get the most out of your CRO. You can read more, here.


Andrew Peddie, Managing Director of FHL – which is celebrating its 10-year anniversary this year – gives his predictions about what business systems will look like in 2027. You can read more, here.


The right partnerships make perfect sense and technology partnering is becoming more and more popular within the tech industry. Peoplevox have shared an article explaining the benefits of technology partnerships. You can read more, here.

The Filter

The Filter pick apart some eCommerce jargon as part of their “Buzzword Busting” blog series. In this article, they explain what is meant by “Customer Centricity.” You can read more, here.


Why PIM is the key to your eCommerce success. Pimberly believe that the key to creating a great customer experience is providing the right information for the right customers, exactly when they need it. For companies handling large amounts of product data, PIM is ideally placed to help. You can read more, here.

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Finch, PushON, Bunting and More

Our eCommerce Matters series features contributions from the sector’s thought leaders. This week, Click Consult picked up two awards at the UK Agency Awards, Finch explore machine learning and it’s impact on advertising, PushON share a meeting with Magento specialist Toni Procter, Bunting share tips to ensure you can keep your customers happy and engaged and Cheetah Digital explain how you can make your subject line stand out from the rest.

Click Consult

Click Consult picked up two awards at the UK Agency Awards at the Montcalm Marble Arch: Digital Agency of the Year and Best Not-for-Profit for their Oxfam campaign, ‘We Won’t Live With Poverty’. You can read more about Click Consult and the fantastic work they do, here.

Machine learning: the applications and expected impact on advertising. This week, Finch updated their PPC Article Series by Bjorn Espenes with this article exploring machine learning and it’s impact on advertising. You can read more, here.

This week, PushON shared a meeting with Magento specialist Toni Procter. Being 1 of 2 women in her department at work and in a male-dominated role, Procter shared some insight into what it’s like being a woman in web development. You can read more, here.

The Essential Personalisation Techniques to retain your best customers. Recent research has shown that 80% of your future revenue will come from 20% of your existing customers. That’s why Bunting have shared some useful tips to ensure you keep your customers happy and engaged. Read more, here.

Cheetah Digital
Subject lines: how brands can stand out. In today’s overcrowded world, it is incredibly important to stand out from competitors. When it comes to Email Marketing, the subject line is the best place for a brand to stand out and showcase it’s individuality from other brands. Cheetah Digital explore how to use the subject line to generate success. You can read more, here.

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Machine Learning: The Applications And Expected Impact On Advertising

The term “machine learning” has a strict definition among computer scientists. Machine learning
is “the ability to learn without being explicitly programmed.” This term is relatively old in the
timeline of computer science and development, coined in 1959 at IBM.

However, the term “machine learning” is now being used too broadly in the advertising industry.
When digital marketers promote what their technology does, they tend to blur definitions of
automatic, programmatic, and mechanic (machine) learning. Terms like “Big Data” and “A.I.” are
also trendy buzzwords that attempt to explain what digital tools can accomplish.

Ambiguity and hype aside, it’s important to understand that these technologies provide valuable,
provable results, while also demonstrating the limitations in the current development stage of
machine learning. As you evaluate vendors and technologies to use for your own marketing
efforts, the following should be helpful to navigate what’s hype and buzz-talk versus reality.

Simply put, in conjunction with the previously-given definition, machine learning is running a
defined process that is fed new data while the outcome improves based on set rules. A good
example would be using machine learning to decide if a house is located in San Francisco or
Las Vegas. The outcome is an absolute answer (binary) and there are a number of fixed
variables that operate in a certain range. Assuming that you cannot use a zip code or even an
address to make the decision, you would want to program the machine to analyze the choices
based upon price per square foot, average temperature, humidity, and other factors that help
define a region. Based on these variables, you could make very accurate decisions over time to
determine the location. If your problem has many variables with high correlation and low
variation, it lends itself well to machine learning.

Conversely, if there are many variables with low correlation and high variation, the situation may
not lend itself well to machine learning. For this reason, machine learning may be more
applicable for display advertising than for paid search and shopping advertising.

Why one and not the other? The reason is there are more variables with higher correlation
within display advertising, such as multiple filters of audiences. Search and shopping have
many more variations (keywords, match types, quality scores, and audiences).

It is easy to be sucked into the excitement of new technologies. A.I. and machine learning
together may even seem like the silver bullet that will instantly change the game. At Finch, we
will be the first ones to be excited about what these technologies can potentially deliver, but we
will also be the first to share a reality check. There are enormous gains to be had today from
automation and programmatic platforms (buying clicks through an API with software), but the
applications for machine learning are still limited by their early development and capability.

Speaking specifically to the benefits of machine learning in digital advertising, one area of
improvement and learning that is currently being explored includes ad copy, as well as
combinations of words or images that drive click-through- rate (CTR) and conversions (such as
online purchases or webinar enrollments). The variety of words/images are finite with the
surrounding variables behaving dependently; therefore, they have low variance.

We prefer to judge new technologies by their current impact on customer experience, and how
further development can affect that same experience in the future. The person clicking on the ad
is ultimately the judge of the revenue-generating improvement, which is measured by click-
through-rates (CTR) and the resulting conversions and revenues.

If done correctly, technologies can add value in this phase by making ad presentation more
relevant in all the dimensions that matter: ad copy keywords (SEO), device types (mobile,
desktop, tablet), audiences, landing pages, and so on. It can also be highly effective for the
advertiser to save costs by automating tasks.

There is also a great benefit of executing this in a software program to capture the multi-
dimensional unique click profile on individual users that is created at the moment each click
auction runs.

Now how can data gathered by machine learning be put to effective use? The campaign
structure has to be built granularly, starting from the ground up, and it must be maintained
meticulously. Our next article will outline how this can be accomplished on a programmatic

— — –
If you want to easily understand introduction to how machine learning works, visit our friends at R2D3 to learn more.

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Sitecore, Shopblocks, Magento and More

Our eCommerce Matters series features contributions from the sector’s thought leaders. Sitecore explain how machine learning will optimise marketing results, Shopblocks discuss Google’s HTTP Security Warnings coming in October, International Business Festival interview eCommerce Show North, Event Director, Martyn Collins, Exact Abacus explore the advantages of using marketplace management software and Magento share some tips for staying ahead of the constantly evolving world of SEO.


How machine learning will optimise marketing results. This week, Lars Petersen, Sitecore’s VP of business Optimisation zooms in on how ML will enhance the customer experience through an unprecedented level of personalisation. Read more, here.

Google’s HTTP Security Warnings are Coming in October – here’s what you need to know. In April this year, Google announced that it will show security warnings on Chrome from October 2017 when a user visits an unsecure URL with any sort of form or input field on it. Shopblocks explain how to stop this from negatively affecting your site. Read more, .

International Business Festival

International Business Festival interviewed Event Director, Martyn Collins to find out why eCommerce Show North is a must-attend event for every business in the North. Read more, here.

Exact Abacus

How to manage stock when selling across multiple marketplaces. Marketplace Management is vital for simultaneously managing your stock across various marketplaces. Exact Abacus explore the advantages of using marketplace management software. You can read more, here.


You don’t have to be an SEO expert to improve your site’s search engine visability. Magento have shared some tips for staying ahead of the constantly evolving world of SEO. You can read more, here.

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Klevu, Blueclaw, Tech North and More

The eCommerce Matters series is where we share all of the latest news and insights from our exhibition partners.

Today: Blueclaw put together a list of useful third-party metric sites, Tech North are launching the Tech North Angel Network, Klevu look at how redesigning your search box and function in general can drive more value from search and Stein IAS team up with Demographica in order to market target Africa.


Building links is a several stage process. However, there are various third-party metric sites that are there to help you. They can find relevant sites using an enormous database of websites, with which they can compare your given site to. Blueclaw have put together a list of these sites that you need to be using. Read more, here.

Tech North

Tech North are launching the Tech North Angel Network. The aim of this network is to build a strong, open network of tech investors that is easy to access and open to pan-Northern collaboration. The programme works to help startups find angel investors and for angel investors to find the best startups. You can find out more about the programme, here.


Business owners are allocating more and more time and money to user experience and conversion rate optimisation (CRO), with a view to driving more value from existing customers. This includes site search which can add a lot of value in reducing the time to conversion and also make user journeys more streamlined. In this article, Klevu look at how redesigning your search box and function in general can drive more value from search. Read more, here.

Stein IAS

Two of the world’s elite business-to-business marketing agencies have formed a strategic alliance in a bid to bring added value to global businesses targeting Africa. Demographica will work in tandem with Stein IAS’ global account handling teams to deploy campaigns from local offices in South Africa, Kenya, Ghana and Nigeria. Find out more, here.

eCommerce Show North will be an unmissable event for all those with a connection to the eCommerce sector, from CEOs, CMOs and MDs to heads of digital, developers and technical managers.

There’s still time to get involved as an exhibitor, sponsor or partner – please contact Martyn Collins on or by emailing .

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Nosto, Space 48, Bronto and More

The Weekly Round Up is where we share all of the latest news and insights from our exhibition partners. This week, Space 48 discuss Black Friday strategies, Business Growth Hub explain how funding can possibly help you upgrade your ISO certification, Nosto share 6 layers of effective product recommendations, Bronto hosted an event featuring guest speaker Robbie Hardy and Steamhaus explain the importance of Site Reliability Engineering.

Space 48

eCommerce companies will already be working on their eCommerce strategies for Black Friday. Space 48’s Founder Jon Woodall was recently on UKFast’s webinar panel of eCommerce experts discussing Black Friday trends. Here is 5 key Black Friday takeaways from the webinar, including quotes from Jon and the other eCommerce gurus. To read more, click here.

Business Growth Hub

Are you ISO 9001:2008 certified? From September 2018 this certification will not longer be valid and your quality management system will need to be upgraded to retain its ISO certification. Manufacturing businesses can access funding to help them with this migration. Anne Campion, Manufacturing Services Manager at the Business Growth Hub explains everything you need to know. You can read more, here.


A 2015 study stated that the majority of online shoppers expect personalised shopping experiences, you can do this by recommending items tailored to their taste. In this article, Nosto explore the anatomy of effective onsite product recommendations to help you leverage the benefits for your website. To read more, click here.


Bronto’s OWL Committee hosted an event featuring guest speaker, Robbie Hardy. Robbie is a serial entrepreneur and author focused on mentorship and empowering women in business. Mary Flannigan, Customer Success Manager at Bronto discusses the points that she has learnt from Robbie that has helped her lead and grow in her career. You can read more, here.


Site reliability engineering is ensuring that a product/platform can scale up, is reliable and does all of that as stress-free as possible. Steamhaus explain the importance of SRE in this article. Read more, here.

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Capita, Dotmailer, Websand and More

Our Weekly Round Up is a fantastic opportunity to share our exhibition partners’ latest news and insights. This week, Capita discuss the benefits of learning another language, Cloud Solutions put together an inforgraphic displaying the importance of cloud based apps working together, Websand explain why and how often you should be sending out emails to your list, Code Computerlove’s Moujib Aghrout shares a day in the life and Dotmailer discuss loyalty programs.


Why should you learn a foreign language? Improved memory, problem solving, being a part of another culture? Capita explain the many benefits that foreign languages can have on your life. Read more, here.

Cloud Solutions

It is vital for businesses to ensure that their cloud based apps work well together to create a greater workflow efficiencies, improve productivity, creativity and collaboration within the workplace. Cloud Solutions have created an infographic explaining three reasons why your cloud business apps should play well together, you can check it out here.


Email automation is the best way to reach your audience. But, when and how often should you email your list? Websand have put together this handy guide explaining everything you need to know about emails to reach your customers at the right time and to avoid the dreaded spammer list. Read more, here.

Code Computerlove

Moujib Aghrout is a Foundation Developer at Code Computerlove. He’s recently given some insight into his role in the company, what he gets up to day-to-day and what the most challenging aspect of the job is. Find out more, here.


Customer loyalty is vitally important as returning customers spend 67% more than first time buyers. This week, Dotmailer discuss building a sense of investment through a loyalty program with rewards and incentives. Find out more, here.

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Visualsoft, Jumpstart, Maginus and More

The Weekly Round Up is a fantastic opportunity to share our latest news and insights from our exhibition partners. CTI Digital discuss Magento 2.1.8, Visual Soft explain why you should be using email automation, Twenty Six Digital and Maginus discuss keeping your business secure and Jumpstart share how NDT companies can use R&D tax relief to drive growth.

CTI Digital

Magento have issued a new release (2.1.8) which is available for Magento Open Source and Magento Commerce. CTI Digital have put together an article that takes a closer look at this release, the improvements it provides and the instructions on how you can upgrade.


“95% of companies who are already using marketing automation software for other channels are now using automation for their email campaigns, too”. Visualsoft explain why you should be using email automation for your next campaign. Find out more, here.

Twenty Six Digital

Security is often the hardest part of running a business or website. Twenty Six Digital introduced ISO27001:2013 in 2015 and accredited in 2016. For 12 months, they have thrived under the security standard achieving ISO27001 accreditation in June 2017. Twenty Six have also achieved Cyber Essentials Plus accreditation and migrated their Data Protection Act commitments to the new GDPR standard well before the May 2018 deadline. Find out more, here.


The worldwide NDT market is growing at over 8% a year, however there are new challenges such as the increased use of composite materials and additive manufacturing and the the move towards alternative energy. Jumpstart believe it is crucial to capitalise on these growth opportunities with heavy investment in R&D. To find out more, click here.


As reported by the National Cyber Security Centre, businesses across the UK are being targeted by cyber criminals every day. What can you do to protect your business? Maginus have put together an article discussing the digital doomsday. Read more, here.

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Temando, Fluid Digital, Endless Gain and More

Our Weekly Round Up is a brilliant opportunity to share our exhibition partners’ latest news and insights. Endless Gain explore the psychology behind emotions and making a purchase, Fluid Digital discuss using review functionality in your eCommerce store, Temando share the State of Shipping in Commerce Report 2017, Pinpoint explain why Magento BI is one of the best tools for providing insight into your data and 2JCommerce explain everything you need to know about having your own app.

Endless Gain
Do your customers make purchases logically or are their purchases based largely on emotion? Endless Gain have put together a blog about the psychology behind emotions and making a purchase. Read more, here.

Fluid Digital
Using review functionality in your eCommerce store is a daunting step. However, the upsides are impressive. Reevo (verified customer rating and review site) claims that 63% of shoppers prefer to ship from eCommerce stores with customer reviews. Ready to add reviews?
Find out more, here.

Temando surveyed retailers and shoppers in the United States, United Kingdom, Australia and France to create the State of Shipping in Commerce Report 2017. They put together the report in collaboration with research partner Research Now. To read a full copy of the report, click here.

Pinpoint Designs
Magento Business Intelligence (Magento BI) is a data warehousing tool. Pinpoint describe their experience using BI and explain why it is one of the best tools for providing insight into your data. To read more, click here.

Do you need an app? 2J commerce explain everything you need to know about having your own app. Will people find it? Is it worth it? Are apps on the decline? Find out more, here.

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Worldpay, XSellco, Pricesearcher and More

Our Weekly Round Up is a fantastic opportunity to share our exhibition partners’ latest news and insights. This week, UKFast’s Lawrence Jones discusses Prince Harry’s thoughts on smartphones and their psychological impact on young people, Made by Pi ask ‘What is CUI?’, XSellco interviews Creoly’s managing director, Adam Bowen about whether investors are required when building a successful store, Worldpay have launched an online marketplace that allows users to find the perfect payment integration and Pricesearcher explain the limitations of .co.uk websites.

‘Hold the phone’ – Lawrence Jones discusses Prince Harry’s thoughts on smartphones, young people and the psychological impact of the constant influx of likes, notifications and messages. Read more, here.

What is a Conversational User Interface (CUI)? Made by Pi discusses how you can interact, engage and immerse yourself in an array of digital products and services using CUI. Find out more, here.

XSellco interviews Creoly’s managing director, Adam Bowen. Creoly is an online store that specialises in high end stationary and premium pens. They explore whether investors are required when building a successful store. To find out more, click here.

According to Worldpay, finding the perfect payments integration just got easier.’Worldpay Works With’ is an online marketplace, showcasing all the partner integrations they have to offer. This includes details of over 60 partner integrations, plugins and add-ons, including SAP Hybris, Amadaeus, Zuora and Magento. To find out more, click here.

There are some key factors to consider when looking to branch out to international markets when using a .co.uk website. Pricesearcher have put together an article explaining the limitations that are involved with using .co.uk websites, obtaining Top Level Domains such as .fr and .nz and their effects on SEO. To find out more, click here.

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Hair & Beauty home booking app launches in Manchester

Gather are the digital agency behind the development of a new mobile app for the hair and beauty industry. Manchester based startup No Filter Needed aim to provide salon quality experiences for women in the comfort of their own home or workplace.
The application, initially on iOS allows users to browse through a selection of looks for either hair or makup before booking a service with one of No Filter Needed’s trained stylists. Bookings can be made at a time that suits the user and all payments are handled via Apple Pay for a quick efficient service.
The initial launch has seen a spike in interest in the service which has been building up awareness among its followers for some time now. Demand is expected to grow following the initial launch of the app in Manchester as the business looks to expand into the surrounding areas.

Daniel Allman at No Filter Need said:
“When we first came up with the idea for No Filter Needed back in 2016 we didn’t have a clue of where to start. We had so many ideas and didn’t know what was viable and how to progress. Gather helped us to focus on what was important, suggested some innovative ways to make the app different and brought some great insight to help us make some important decisions. As a startup and with no experience in the app market, Gather lead us through the stages leading to our launch. Our initial users have remarked on how intuitive the app to use and navigate and we couldn’t be happier with the finished result. The app works seamlessly with our stylist portal where our professionals can set their own availability with ease. We can’t wait to get started on version two!”

Richard Silk at Gather added:
“We’re really happy with the initial app, it looks great and we’ve had some enthusiastic feedback so far. As a development agency that works with a lot of startups, I can say from experience that No Filter Needed is set to expand quickly. There’s a style to suit every occasion plus we built in a reward system for loyalty and friend referral to stimulate the snowball effect. We have big things planned for the development of the app and look forward to a long relationship with No Filter Needed.”

The app is available for download on the itunes store here.
No Filter Needed: www.nofilterneeded.com
Gather: www.gatherdigital.co.uk

For more information please contact;
Gather Digital Ltd
18-22 Lloyds House, Lloyd Street, Manchester M2 5WA

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Automation in the Paid Search and Shopping industry

As described in my previous article, the paid search industry is broken and ripe for a massive technological change. For years, there has been very little innovation that is scalable. To understand this change, it’s critical to address the supply and demand of this industry.

For a very long time, the demand side (advertisers and agencies) has remained much the same, while companies on the supply side (Google and Bing) have created a flurry of new technologies to help them. Astoundingly, advertisers and agencies on the other side are using people and tools to do work that can be fully automated, maintaining an inefficiency that is hurting the return on ad spend (ROAS) for them.

What does this mean? Practically speaking, it means that advertisers have a lot to gain by integrating technology in their efforts to use paid search with the goal to drive revenue growth and predictable profits. This gain may be the difference struggling to keep the lights on versus establishing a huge competitive advantage and stronger market share through the modern, automated paid search.

There are a lot of tasks that should be automated in paid search marketing, and in the following articles of this series there will be very specific deep dives into some of the most critical areas, reducing time spent on paid search and making a measurable impact.

Following are examples of areas that should be fully automated are

  • Campaign building and maintenance
  • Data modeling to isolate critical, granular data points
  • Algorithms to automate complex bidding strategies
  • Handling of mobile performance
  • Handling of audience performance
  • Handling of custom bid modifiers
  • Influencing quality score
  • Making the most of keyword expansions
  • Self-tuning performance adjustments

All of these areas are extremely time-consuming if done well, and each hour spent on this takes away from the ROAS for the advertiser, as you’re likely paying someone to perform the work and make the adjustments.

Many in marketing worry that automation is if this will take away all the jobs for the SEM/PPC professionals, but nothing is further from the truth. In reality, we do not have enough search/shopping professionals, and they are spending far too much time on repetitive tasks that could be automated. This time could be much better spent on analysis and strategy. Examples of this included attribution modeling and testing, cross-channel strategies, brand versus non-brand optimization, tracking results closer to the bottom line (vs CPA type programs), and competitive creative strategies, just to name a few.

If you’re skeptical, here’s the truth: automation at this level is being used in many companies today, and the search professionals in these organizations and agencies are freed up to focus on activities that have much higher ROAS for their organizations, leaving the boring, repetitive tasks to computers and using the minds of marketing staff to drive stronger results.

Watch for my next article in this series: Taking a programmatic approach.

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XSellco, MediaCom, Cheetah Digital and More

Every week, we put together a Weekly Round Up. This is to keep you updated with our exhibition partners’ news and insights. XSellco discuss Amazon’s third annual Prime Day, MediaCom dominate the M&M Global Awards shortlist, Cheetah Digital explain how to avoid deliverability issues, First10 explain probably gains with the digital revolution and Fluid Digital prepares for Facebook’s latest link changes.

Amazon’s third annual Prime Day took place on 11th of July. How did it go? According to Amazon, sales surged by more than 60 percent compared to the same 30-hour period a year ago and more new members joined Prime than on any single day in its history. To find out more, click here.

The M&M Global Awards celebrate the very best in multi-market media thinking and account management. MediaCom has dominated the shortlist, with 27 shortlisted entries and an additional four entered directly by client Shell. The agency’s total of 31 shortlists is more double the nearest competitor. To find out more, click here.

Cheetah Digital
Avoiding deliverability issues with Gmail (and other ISPs). Cheetah Digital say you can avoid deliverability issues with two data points: decreasing your email complaints and increasing your email engagement. To find out how you can do those two things, click here.

With the digital revolution, the concept of ‘online’ began. Then came a proliferation of platforms, digital disruption and ultimately increased competition. But, what does the future look like? First10 explain probable gains, here.

Are You Ready For Facebook’s Uneditable Link Previews? Facebook is removing the ability to edit a link preview before sharing a link in a post. Fluid Digital have put together an article explaining why Facebook is making the change and what you can do about it. Read more, .

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Click Consult, Mabo, The Big Word and More

Our Weekly Round Up is to provide you with the latest news and insights from a selection of our exhibition partners. Click Consult put together a guide for the new LinkedIn changes, Mabo’s Lee Mableson shared a day in his life, Gather discuss developing tools for the rail sector, PlentyMarkets explain the benefits of using Amazon Business and The Big Word explain editing vs proofreading.

Click Consult
Have you noticed the recent changes to LinkedIn’s desktop interface? This week, Click Consult have put together a guide for everything you need to know about the recent changes. To find out more, click here.

Mabo Media was recently chosen as one of 5 agencies to participate in the Google Mobile Vanguard program. Following this, they have shared ‘an exceptional day in the life of’ their Managing Director, Lee Mableson as he travelled as part of the program to Google’s European headquarters in Dublin. To find out more, click .

Gather Digital
Gather have recently been contracted by Rail Diary, who supply software to the rail industry, to develop a custom information management solution for construction workers. To find out more, click here.

PlentyMarkets discuss the benefits of using Amazon Business in your PlentyMarkets system, to reach new customers and increase your turnover. To Find out more, click here.

The Big Word
Editing, proofreading and copyediting. They are often used interchangeably, but they’re not the same thing. To help clarify things, The Big Word have put together this handy guide to explain the difference. To find out more, click here.

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PushON, Bunting, Finch and More

Our Weekly Round Up is a fantastic opportunity to share our exhibition partners’ latest news and insights. eCommerce Club will be sharing their top eCommerce marketing tactics, MEC show how the art world is unlocking the power of big data in Cannes 2017 talk, PushON discuss what they are doing to close the gender gap in tech, Bunting share their tips to win more customers through creating urgency and how technology can fix the broken search and shopping industry. Find out more, below!

eCommerce club
eCommerce Club Lunch: Retailer’s Top eCommerce Marketing Tactics unveiled. eCommerce Club have announced that they will be at Heddon Street Kitchen in London on September 20th to explore the top eCommerce marketing tactics for retailers. Find out more, here.

MEC shows how the art world is unlocking the power of big data in Cannes 2017 talk. The talk titled ‘Data Human Creativity Without Intervention’, addressed how representations of data provided by the art and design world offer a powerful solution to the marketing and media industries. Find out more, here.

PushON have put together this article discussing the shortage of women in the digital marketing and technology industries. What’s being done around the world? What are PushON doing to help women empowerment? And how can you get involved? Find out more, here.

Urgency. How can you use it to your advantage? Bunting list 6 tactics to win more customers through creating urgency. Check them out here, here.

The paid search industry can be full of people promising the world but delivering very little. How can we fix this? In this article, Finch discuss how technology is about to fix the broken search and shopping industry for advertisers. Find out more, here.

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Technology Is About To Fix The Broken Search & Shopping Industry For Advertisers

Bjorn Espenes, Finch CEO and Co-founder. The paid search industry is riddled with broken promises. If you have hired an agency or an in-house search guru you have probably been burned; these people tend to promise the world but deliver very little. It seems there are unlimited promises made: we’ll give you amazing PPC performance…in exchange for an upfront fee, a fixed monthly price tag and a long-term contract, or a high fixed salary for an in-house guru. You, the Advertiser, takes all the risk while the hired agency or employee gets paid regardless of performance.

A six-month honeymoon to start going, another six months to start producing, stagnation sets in, the excuses come, then the relationship ends. A story I hear very often when I talk to advertisers.

Why is this?
This problem exists because it is a very complex industry that requires people with specific industry knowledge and solid technology. There are also very low barriers to entry; anyone can start a PPC company with as little as a credit card and a clue. Once started, these companies solicit clients using tricks (see this article for more) with the promise of eternal sunshine for a nominal fee. These promises have given our industry a bad rap over the years, and rightfully so.

There is also an imbalance of information between the advertiser and the search engine.

Every time someone starts typing in the search box, Google and Bing rev up their monster engines filled with big data, machine learning and AI components to predict the exact value of the click they are about to sell you by stack ranking the advertisers (creating ad rank). They know everything about the person doing the search, and they know everything about each of the advertisers. When they serve up the ad they have calculated down to a fraction of a penny exactly what that click is worth to them. This is the supply side of selling clicks and they hold all the cards.

On the demand side of buying clicks, is the advertiser. They know very little about what that next click is worth to them and what they know, they do not execute on. Don’t believe me? Do this:

> Log onto your AdWords account,
> Select Settings
> Select Devices, the go to Columns/Modify Columns:

select Conversions, and add All Conv. Value / Cost.

> This will give you the ROAS metric. Now click on the column header for All Conv. Value / Cost to sort by ROAS.

> Find the first Device line and look at the ROAS number and then look at the matching Bid Adj. Percentage.

– If your target cost of revenue is 20% that should match up with a ROAS of 5.
– If your ROAS is 10, then your Bid Adj. should be 100% (double the bid).
– Alternatively, sort by the bid adj. column (click twice to make it descending), and then look if the bid modifier matches the performance of that campaign.

Consider that this quick analysis gave you relatively high-level information for the campaign. Imagine what discrepancies and opportunities you will find if you drop down to a keyword or PLA level!

Finally, each click that you buy has many variables that must be adjusted to reflect the true value of that next click. Each variable (PLA, keyword/match type, device, audience, location, etc.) has a major impact on the final outcome and the value. Once you know how each of these variables influence the value of that next click, then you need to act on it.

Being able to act on it is the hardest part. There is so much going on in that microsecond before the click is purchased that it’s humanly impossible to manage in real-time. Truthfully, there is only one way to manage it: by using software. Call it automation, programmatic, or machine-learning, this is how advertisers are successfully buying profitable clicks nowadays.

When it comes to using granular and accurate information about each specific click being purchased, advertisers are at a huge disadvantage. The Search Engine giants have all the information. It’s an unfair match. However, there is good news for advertisers: this large gap can be closed by taking advantage of the machine-learning technology that is now available.

This article series will discuss how new technology has started to change the paid search industry, it has started slowly but the industry will see rapid adoption over the next 12-18 months.

I’ll be covering these impactful areas in this article series:
1. Automation,
2. Programmatic approach,
3. Machine learning, applications and their impact,
4. Campaign/keyword/PLA structure, build and maintenance automation,
5. Influencing Quality Score in large scale, and
6. How attribution modelling and its application amplifies the above!

A teaser of what to expect in this series:
This graphic shows an account deploying an automated solution to improve Quality Score. This is done by creating growth by increasing the relative number of exact match clicks purchased. It works incredibly well and has helped crack the code to . The details on how to do this will be covered in detail in the “Article 4: Campaign/Keyword/PLA Automation.”

Our industry is ready for an overhaul because of the huge gap between the supply side and the demand side capabilities. Technology advances and new companies offering solutions will be your partners of the future. The days of archaic spreadsheets and limited bidding tools are in the past. Luckily, this solution and technology is available in the market today and for those who made the change they are seeing big rewards.

Finch is one of those companies who can help you with a real solution to an old problem. Recently, Finch was rewarded Google’s #1 Shopping Partner Performance award for its technology-driven solution, based on the execution of the above. Next up: Automation.

Finch will be exhibiting and speaking at eCommerce Show North, EventCity, Manchester on Oct 11&12th 2017.

To for Free click HERE

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Tech Boulevard: your startup’s chance to exhibit at eCSN17

Tech North will be joining us at eCommerce Show North on October 11 and 12 and they are giving 10 companies the chance to exhibit alongside them. ‘Tech Boulevard’ is a collection of stands at the show that are available to businesses based across the region.

Tech North is a government-backed initiative set with the task of boosting the growth of the digital business sector in the North of England. They do this through a number of programmes, events, research and editorial focusing on startups, investment, people, skills and the digital ecosystem.

How can I apply?
To apply for a stand, simply fill out this form. The only requirements are that your business is no more than five years old and has fewer than 25 full-time employees.

Richard Gregory, Director at Tech North, said: “The North is already becoming recognised as a global leader for ecommerce and this event is a great opportunity to showcase that capability. At Tech North we want to shine a light on the next wave of innovative companies and this exhibit will demonstrate ten from across the whole region.”

Martyn Collins, Exhibition Director at eCommerce Show North said, “The ECommerce Show North exhibition will be a celebration of the North’s strength in eCommerce and we are delighted that TechNorth are able to provide a platform for new, emerging businesses within the expo. The exposure these businesses will gain will be invaluable to them as they look to increase brand awareness and interest in their technology and services.”

Apply now (deadline: 14 July 2017)

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Klevu, PlentyMarkets, WorldFirst and More

Our Weekly Round Up is to provide you with the latest news and insights from a selection of our exhibition partners. This week, Space 48 explain the latest trends in technology shaping eCommerce in 2017, Business Growth Hub discuss the ‘Eight Wastes’ technique, WorldFirst’s new video explains their new World Account, Klevu question whether a third party search solution is more efficient than Magento and PlentyMarkets explain their new Shopify plugin. Find out more, below.

Space 48
The digital landscape is always evolving, therefore, eCommerce businesses need to continually change to meet the fast moving expectations of modern consumers whilst keeping up with advancing technology and trends in innovation. In this article, Space 48’s Head of Insight, Oliver Lees, explains the latest trends in technology shaping eCommerce business strategies in 2017. Find out more, here.

Business Growth Hub
Business Growth Hub Manufacturing advisor Paul Holt, says that ensuring efficiency in your operation can significantly improve productivity and your business’ bottom-line. This article explains the ‘eight wastes’ technique, which aims to help highlight areas of your business which may be wasteful in order to identify priorities for improvement. Find out more, here.

WorldFirst’s new World Account makes growing globally easier, cheaper and more accessible for small businesses all over the world! Check out this video to find out more.

What can a premium site search solution offer over magento native search? Klevu put together this article to explain the limitations of Magento’s search offering and how a third party search solution may be the answer. Find out more, here.

PlentyMarkets have created a new plugin which allows you to add popular eCommerce platform Shopify to your PlentyMarkets system. This article provides you with everything you need to know about the new plugin and how you can benefit from it. Find out more, here.

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Magento Welcomes PureNet as Solution Partner.

UK Ecommerce Agency, PureNet has today announced its partnership with Magento, the largest commerce ecosystem in the world.

Magento relies on its ecosystem of solution, consulting and technology partners to deliver its solution suite to global customers. Acceptance onto the Solution Partner Program is awarded to companies who are focussed on delivering the highest quality of service to new and existing Magento clients. PureNet is now one of just a handful of ecommerce agencies in the UK announced as a trusted Magento Business Partner.

The new partnership signifies the aligning of both companies’ core values and goals – to help merchants grow their business, and to create engaging customer experiences with the Magento Platform. Magento Enterprise Edition, trusted by millions of retailers, boasts an impressive list of out-of-the-box functionality and provides even more options to customise, adapt and scale. As represented by PureNet’s new partnership, the company places a clear focus on the delivery of innovative Magento Enterprise solutions for retailers and brands looking to rapidly grow their businesses.

To ensure its Solution Partner Program is representative of the industry’s finest, requirements for acceptance include Magento Certified Developers, expert Magento Specialists and a number of successful Magento implementations – all of which have been demonstrated by PureNet. The company, with offices in York, London, Manchester and Birmingham, has delivered Magento Enterprise and Community ecommerce solutions for clients including The Royal British Legion, LighterLife and Travelopia.

PureNet Chief Executive, Dr Paul M Gibson, said: “We are delighted to be accepted into the Magento Solution Partner Program. Our focus always has and will be on delivering innovative and effective ecommerce solutions. Working with Magento, the most flexible commerce solution in the world, our team is able to consistently develop solutions that deliver real competitive advantage for PureNet clients. Our new partnership with Magento enables us to remain at the forefront of our industry and our development expertise in Magento Enterprise Edition showcases our ability to deliver unique and engaging shopping experiences. We are very much looking forward to being part of the ecosystem and working alongside Magento!”

For more information visit www.purenet.co.uk.

Blueclaw, Payoneer, Bronto and More!

Every week we create a round up of all the latest news and insights from our exhibition partners at eCommerce Show North. Blueclaw question if all press really is good press, Tech North discuss the digital skills gap in the UK, Bronto explain how to provide shoppers with the delivery options they demand, Payoneer explain how to create an effective landing page and digitl are a part of the Northern eCommerce Awards. Find out more, below.

Some claim that PR ‘disasters’ can also be positive for brands when dealt with correctly. Blueclaw have put together some recent examples of social marketing campaigns that question whether any press is good press. Find out more here.

Tech North
What do we need to get people into digital jobs? Tech North discuss what employers are doing wrong, how diversity is a huge problem, how we talk about careers in tech and how we can get everyone to work together on this issue. Find out more here.

Bronto discuss reducing carrier costs and providing shoppers the delivery options they demand. Is it possible? Definitely. Find out more, here.

Effective landing pages are the key to succeeding in eCommerce. Design, layout and content are all important factors into the engagement and response of the site visitor. Payoneer have put together an article explaining how you can create a landing page that will convert. Find out more, here.

Digitl have recently announced that their Founder and Head of Agency is part of the judging line-up for Northern eCommerce Awards 2017. You can check out the full list of judges and more information about the event, here.

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A hat-trick of Client Wins for Gather

This month, Gather announce a hat-trick of client wins having recently won new work across a range of sectors (rail, eCommerce & science/pharmaceutical testing services).
The team has recently expanded after moving into their new Manchester city centre offices. The move was to accommodate their growth plans and a lot of effort has been put into developing new business which has now come to fruition. This work includes the development of data collection applications, product information management (PIM) systems and templating tools for the Pimcore CMS. This adds to a number of other new clients gather has added to their roster this year.

Working alongside ALS Global
ALS Global is one of the world’s largest and most diverse analytical testing services providers. With locations and websites spanning the entire globe, the company requires a website management platform that offers flexibility and scalability.
Gather has been approached to become a development partner to help with the build of a number of new templating tools to be rolled out for website admin to manage content more easily. There are a number of technical challenges to overcome when dealing with a large CMS migration of this kind which the team at Gather have a lot of experience dealing with.
Once the initial build has been completed, Gathers technical director Paul Clegg will oversee the migration of over 8000 content pages.

Developing new tools for the rail sector
Rail Diary, who supply software to the rail industry, have recently contracted Gather to develop a custom information management solution for construction workers.
The collection and management of rail infrastructure data is currently an archaic process and long been seen as a hindrance to effective management and reporting. The planned work will revolutionise the way data is collected and stored, bringing huge efficiencies and time savings across the industry.
Over the coming months Gather will be overseeing the design and development of backend systems to house and manage data whilst rolling out a number of tools that will aid in the effective collection of project critical information.
It’s likely this project will see a phased roll out starting later this summer.

William Doyle from Rail Diary said:
“In Gather Digital, we believe we have found an agency who are capable of delivering a high value product that will exponentially improve the current data capture and interpretation processes in the UK infrastructure market.”
Richard Silk at Gather added:
“We’re very happy Rail Diary have chosen to work with us on this project. Whilst we’re experienced in developing this kind of solution, the sector is new to us which presents an interesting learning curve. We’re currently getting up to speed with the industry specifics and looking forward to extending our knowledge in this area.”

A new partnership between Gather and Lyco Group

Leading lighting supplier Lyco have recently engaged Gather to develop a Product Information Management (PIM) system to manage the company’s growing product list.
With more than 20,000 products, sold across two ecommerce sites (Lyco and Lighting Direct), and the desire to add more products in the future, the requirements to separate product information from sales and other business activities are higher than ever.
Gather have been tasked with organising and consolidating all product data into a new single source before integrating with the company’s eCommerce platform.
The future roadmap of the project includes: developing organisational workflows, integrations with various marketplaces and the development of web-to-print features.

Mark Staffiere from Lyco said:
“We are excited to be working with a market-leading agency such as Gather. They share our commitment to data excellence and have fantastic experience in delivering well-run, high quality PIM projects.”
Richard Silk at Gather added:
“This is a fantastic project for us. Lyco are a well-established supplier with a great reputation and we’re thrilled to be working with them. PIM is something we’re passionate about as an agency and something that sets us apart from our peers in Manchester.”

Finch, Nosto, dotmailer and More

Every week we create a round up of all the latest news and insights from our exhibition partners at eCommerce Show North. This week, TwentySix explain Google’s new keyword Quality Score update, Dotmailer reflect on the annual Internet Retailer Commerce & Expo Show, Nosto explore what luxury brand Osprey London are doing right and how you can do the same, Mabo ask the question ‘does your account manager really care?’ and Finch explain how you can improve your paid search optimisation.

Twenty Six have put together a blog explaining Google’s new keyword Quality Score which includes Expected CTR, Ad relevance and Landing Page experience. This useful update provides users with plenty of information in order to optimise accounts as granular as possible. Find out more, here.

This week, Dotmailer have been reflecting on the annual Internet Retailer Commerce & Expo show. This article explains their 4 key session takeaways for brands. Find out what they had to say about the event, here.

This week, Mabo created an article about the joys of being a PPC Account Manager and asks the question ‘Does Your Account Manager really care?’. Find out more, here.

Luxury leather goods brand, Osprey London have found an ideal way to communicate quality online. In this article, Nosto explore what they are doing right and how you can do the same. Check it out, here.

Finch claim that many paid search campaigns are still optimised in ways that are guaranteed to deliver sub par results. Could you be limiting the amount of profit for your campaigns? Finch have put together this article to explain how to improve your optimisation using Adwords, keywords and software solutions. Find out more, here.

Stein IAS, Steamhaus, UKFast and More

Every week we create a round up of all the latest news and insights from our exhibition partners at eCommerce Show North. This week, VisualSoft described 5 ways you can enhance conversion rates using overlays, Stein IAS explain why post-modern marketing is so important, Steamhaus explain AWS’ 42% jump in revenue, PriceSearcher put together an infographic explaining the search trends based on their 1 million+ searches in April and UKFast explain why they will be celebrating London Tech Week.

Can overlays increase conversion across your website? Visualsoft have put together an article describing 5 ways you can enhance conversion rates using overlays (pop ups). They are used with the intent to save a customer from exiting your site, navigating customers into areas of your site that you specifically want them to see. Find out more, here.

Stein IAS
Stein IAS are publishing a book charting the pre-modern, modern and fast-emerging new era of ‘Post Modern Marketing. This week, Tom Stein, Chairman and Chief Client Officer of Stein IAS explained why post-modern marketing is an important milestone in the evolution of marketing. To find out more, click here.

Steamhaus have put together an article regarding Amazon Web Services (AWS). They posted a 42% jump in revenue during the first fiscal quarter of 2017. What does that mean for Amazon? Find out, here.

Recently, PriceSearcher have put together an infographic and article explaining the search trends based on the 1 million+ searches a month from consumers using their site. It shares category level detail on what is trending to help retailers and brands capitalise on keywords. Find out more, here.

UKFast will be celebrating London Tech Week by providing cyber security conference Unlocked London. This event is set to delve deep into expert’s views into cybersecurity fears with a live demonstration showing just how easy it is to get hacked. Find out more about the event and everything else UKFast have to offer, here.

VisualSoft, Bronto, Jumpstart and More

Our Weekly Round Up is to provide you with the latest news and insights from a selection of our exhibition partners. This week, Fluid Digital put together a list of eCommerce players that you should be following on Twitter, Bronto explain how you can avoid losing revenue through the checkout process, Worldpay put together some research about shoppers, AR and VR, Jumpstart announced that they will be exhibiting at UK Space Conference 2017 and VisualSoft have celebrated one year of their business growth team.

Fluid Digital have put together a list of 10 Key eCommerce players that you should be following on Twitter. Ecommerce advice, new tools or industry news, you can find everything you need from these key players. Check out who made the list, .

This week, Bronto posted an article titled ‘batten down the hatches on your checkout process’. According to recent research, over 75% of all shopping sessions resulted in an abandoned shopping cart during the first quarter of 2017. Are you doing everything you can to pick up that lost revenue? Find out more about what Bronto had to say, here.

Virtual and Augmented Reality – are shoppers ready? Worldpay have put together some research to find out whether consumers are ready to embrace the latest boom in technology. Find out more, here.

This week, Jumpstart have announced that they will be exhibiting at UK Space Conference 2017. It is an event that brings together the space community, including government, industry, academia, end users, education providers, researchers and the financial community to meet, network, do business and shape the landscape for the coming years. For more information about the event, click here.

This month, Visualsoft have celebrated one year of their business growth team. The team of 10 are responsible for helping clients boost sales and grow their business through multiple-channel markets. To find out more about what they do, click here.

Payoneer, Klevu, Digital People and More

Our Weekly Round Up, is a collection of the latest news and insights from our exhibition partners. This week, Payoneer have put together a guide for how to use their software to manage multiple marketplaces in one place, Klevu explain why fashion retailers are investing in search, thebigword show how specialist technology can increase efficiency when booking interpreters, Click Consult explain why you need to be at Benchmark Search Conference 2017 and Digital People question if office perks are worth their money.

Payoneer’s My Store Manager enables users to manage multiple marketplaces in one centralised location. Payoneer have put together a step by step guide on how to set up this new service to help you succeed in today’s competitive marketplace. To read more, click here.

Fashion retailers are continually looking for ways to improve what they are offering to customers. Larger fashion stores have started to invest in search. Klevu have put together an article explaining the challenges they face and how on site search can be used to solve them. To read more, click here.

It has become a time consuming task to secure an interpreter for face-to-face bookings. thebigword have put together an article that explains how specialist technology could dramatically change efficiency so that bookings can be made in their thousands in minutes. To find out more, click here.

Click Consult
Europe’s top search marketing innovators will be at Benchmark Search Conference 2017. It will be taking place 21st September 2017 at Manchester Bridgewater Hall and this year it’s bigger than ever! Click Consult have put together this article to explain why you need to be there and how you can get yourself a ticket. You can find more information, here.

Digital People
Blockbuster digital companies such as Google, Amazon and AirBnB offer perks that remove the barriers between work and life. Digital People use this article to question whether the perks are improving morale or if they are actually detrimental to work life and employees health. To find out more, click here.

CTI Digital, WorldFirst, Plenty Markets and More

Every week we create a round up of all the latest news and insights from our exhibition partners at eCommerce Show North. CTI Digital explain how to fix Magento 2.1.6’s image resize issues, PlentyMarkets explore their etsy pluglin, Intercultural Elements put together the advantages of using local marketplaces over international companies, WorldFirst’s Chief Economist answers some pressing questions regarding his outlook pre-election and Space48’s Oliver Lees outlines the 5 key benefits of Magneto Social.

CTI Digital
How to fix image resize issues after upgrading to Magento 2.1.6. Some users have experienced issues whereby images on the front-end were not displaying correctly. CTI Digital have put together a handy step by step guide explaining how to deal with this issue. Read more, here.

Do you sell handmade or vintage items? You can reach millions of buyers in the UK and around the world using Etsy and PlentyMarkets. PlentyMarkets have created a plugin that allows users to easily use one of the most popular marketplaces for handmade products. Find out more about PlentyMarkets’ etsy plugin, here.

Intercultural Elements
Selling internationally – Marketplaces in France. Intercultural elements explain the advantages of using local marketplaces over international companies such as Amazon and eBay. La Redoute, Cdiscount and PriceMinister are all popular marketplaces in French eCommerce. To find out more, click here.

To prepare for the general election next month, Jeremy Cook, World First’s Chief Economist answers some pressing questions regarding the outlook for the UK economy, sterling and global markets. To read more, click here.

Head of Insight at Space48, Oliver Lees, flew out to Vegas for Magento Imagine 2017. One of the key takeaways from the event was the emergence of Magento Social. And last week, Space48 outlined 5 key benefits of Magento Social for your eCommerce business. You can read them all, here.

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Digitaloft, Endless Gain, Mabo and More

Every week we create a round up of all the latest news and insights from our exhibition partners at eCommerce Show North. This week, Temando set out to demystify US sales tax on shipping charges, Digitl discuss the benefits of using Amazon Barcodes, Mabo share statistics based on how user behaviour has changed, Endless Gain explain how to find lost revenue and James Brockbank invited 9 local SEO experts to explain the secrets of Successful SEO.

Last month, James Brockbank from Digitaloft was published in Search Engine Journal. The post is a great insight into the secrets of successful SEO from the perspective of 9 local SEO experts. To read more, click here.

Endless Gain
Endless Gain explain how to find lost revenue without creating a single experiment. To find out more, click here.

PPC advertising is an ever changing platform and pay per click management company Mabo are constantly adapting their advertising methods to stay one step ahead. This week, they have put together some interesting statistics based on how user behaviour has changed. Read more, here.

Frequently asked questions about saving money, increasing visibility and getting more sales when using Amazon Barcodes. To read more, click here.

This week, Temando set out to demystify US sales tax on shipping charges. They invited subject matter expert – Jennifer Dunn, Chief of Content at TaxJarnto share her top tips. Read more, here.

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Nosto, Finch, Dotmailer and More

Our Weekly Round Up is the perfect opportunity to share the latest news and insights from our exhibition partners. UKFast are named the fifth greatest mid-sized workplace in the UK, Business Growth Hub explain how you can get started on your own PR, Nosto share how and why you should be advertising on Facebook, Finch show us how to get the best out of Google’s latest ‘exact match’ announcement and Dotmailer interview their content manager Ross Banard regarding their biggest and best email marketing benchmark report to day.

What’s it like being part of team UKFast? This week, they were named the fifth greatest mid-sized workplace in the UK. This comes weeks after being named the best place to work in Manchester and fifth in the country by the Sunday Times best companies team. Find out what they’re doing right, here.

Business Growth Hub
Simple, effective and strategic. Business Growth Hub explain how you can get started on your own PR, the right way. Find out more, here.

Not advertising on Facebook? In this post, Nosto explain why Facebook is more than a platform used to post memes, selfies and dog photos. Could it be the platform to change the ecommerce world as a hugely powerful business tool? Read more, .

The death of exact match? This week, Finch explain how Google’s latest announcement regarding ‘exact match’ may actually have a positive impact on the world of search. Find out what they had to say about the recent changes, here.

This week, Dotmailer grabbed an interview with Ross Banard. Dotmailer’s Content Manager and author of Hitting the Mark 2017 – their biggest and best email marketing benchmark report to date. Find out what he had to say, here.

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Nublue Kick Off New Clubline Football Website

Lancaster based eCommerce agency Nublue have kicked off a brand new website for football brand, clublinefootball.com. This is following a full redesign using the open source ecommerce platform, Magento.

Clubline offers a wide selection of the leading brands in football such as Nike, Adidas, Prostar and many more. The sports eCommerce site were looking for a site that was modern with a conversion focused layout/design using Magento Enterprise.

The new website is mobile optimised and features impressive new features that allow customers to personalise kits and other clothing items/sports accessories with ease. They can add names and numbers to kits whilst being able to visualise any changes pre-purchase.

Matt Hutchinson – agency head at Nublue, explained more:
“A vital aspect of the rebuild and incredibly important to the client was to make improvements in user experience and make the customer’s path to purchase a smoother and easier route to take. A lot of research went into ensuring that well-informed decisions were made at every stage of the design and layout process. Everything from the site’s navigation to the placement of ‘call to actions’ help a customer easily progress from landing page to checkout.”

The sports eCommerce business have experienced positive results since the launch of the website with impressive improvement statistics. Conversion is up 63.58 per cent and transactions by 41.72 per cent. John Leonard – web manager for the brand seemed to be extremely happy with the outcome. “Nublue are professional in approach and rigorous in application. They’re proving to be a pleasure to work with an excellent partner in our eCommerce related activities”.

Another exciting and successful website launch for Nublue continuing on from their positive start to the year. Nublue will also be exhibiting at eCommerce Show North in October 2017.

UKFast, PushON, BlueClaw and More

Our Weekly Round Up is a collection of all the latest news and insights from our exhibition partners at eCommerce Show North. This week, Gather explain the basic features of Web Animations API, PushON prepare for their next big Magento Meetup, UKFast question whether we should be working from home instead of bothering with the stressful daily commute, blueclaw find out who is the leading travel portal this week and Bronto look back on their annual Summit.

Gather Digital
This week, Gather published a post introducing Web Animations API, which is a modern browser feature for creating animations. To read a summary of WAAPI’s basic features, click here.

PushON are preparing for their next big Magento Meetup on the 17th of May at Steamhaus in the Northern Quarter, Manchester. The lineup of speakers is looking impressive with appearances from Magento, Temando and Steamhaus with more names to be announced. To book a place at the event or find out more, click here.

Train strikes, snow storms, poorly kids? This week, UKFast discuss allowing employees to do their day’s work from the comfort of home to avoid the stress of the daily commute. To read more, click here.

This week, Blueclaw find out who is the leading travel portal according to keywords, organic traffic and branded search volume. Find out more, here.

Bronto Summit took place this week, bringing together some of the most influential minds in commerce and retail. One of those being retail innovator ‘Uri Minkoff’, co-founder and CEO of Rebecca Minkoff. This post discusses his appearance at Bronto Summit 2017, where he delivered one of the most memorable keynote speeches in the event’s history. Read more, here.

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eCommerce Club, PureClarity, Steamhaus and More

Every week we create a round up of all the latest news and insights from our exhibition partners at eCommerce Show North. This week, eCommerce Club explain location based digital ad campaigns, 2J Commerce announce the aquisition of Equinox.ie, Click Consult share how Google’s new Mobile Sites exam works, Steamhaus explain why they think GitLab chose to stick with the cloud and PureClarity triumph at the 2017 European Software Awards.

eCommerce Club
eCommerce Club explain location based digital ad campaigns that react to real-time events. This is following the announcement that location data firm Blis and marketing company TVTY would be teaming up to create personalised, location-powered ads. Read more, here.

2J Commerce
2J Commerce had an exciting start to the year when they announced the aquisition of Irish Magento Agency “Equinox.ie”. 2J will aid their growth and firmly establish Equinox.ie as a leading tech partner in Dublin. Read more about the exciting takeover, here.

Click Consult
This week, Click Consult explained Google’s new ‘Mobile Sites’ exam and what it tells us about the future of search. Read more, here.

Last month, GitLab announced that they were choosing to stick with the cloud instead of moving to a bare metal solution. In this post, Steamhaus list the stand out reasons that convinced them to stay on the cloud. Read more, here.

The European Software Awards 2017 took place at the beginning of the month. PureClarity picked up their second European award win after winning Big Data, IoT or Analytics Solution of the Year at the European IT & Software Excellence Awards 2017. Read more about the awards and winners, here.

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Digitaloft, Pinpoint and Worldpay

Our Weekly Round Up is to share our exhibition partner’s latest news and insights. This week, we’re focusing on Pinpoint as they dicuss how to use the data migration tool, Digitaloft are heading to Krakow this month for the European Search Awards and WorldPay explain how their end to end platform is transforming retail.

This month Digitaloft are heading to Krakow for the European Search Awards. They have been nominated for five categories including Best Small SEO Agency, Best Use of Search and Best SEO Campaign. Find out more about the awards ceremony, here.

Migrating data from Magento 1 to Magento 2 using the data migration tool. In this article, Pinpoint explain how to use the Magento migration tool to complete a partial migration. Find out more, here.

In this post, Worldpay explain how their end to end payment platform has transformed retail at The Entertainer. The chain has doubled in size, won a retail week speciality retailer award and they were even ranked in the Sunday Times ‘100 Best Companies to Work For” list in 2014. Find out more about Worldpay, here.

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Fluid Digital, Tech North, Blueclaw and More

Our Weekly Round Up is a fantastic opportunity to share our exhibition partners’ latest news and insights. This week, Fluid Digital explain the world of eCommerce for retail shops, Tech North share the Northern Tech 100, Gather Digital give their 3 golden rules for Data Visualisation, Digital People share their thoughts about the growing digital industry in the North and Blueclaw share the latest news in SEO with their ‘Seven Days in Search’.

Fluid Digital
Does my Retail Shop need an Ecommerce Store? In This post, Fluid Digital explore the world of eCommerce for retail shops. They explain suitable products for ecommerce, the scale of the operation, the importance of a strong online presence and how you can get started. You can learn more, here.

Tech North
Tech North partnered with GP Bullhound to create the Northern Tech 100 to celebrate the fastest growing tech companies in the North. You can find out more and see the full list, here.

Gather Digital
3 Golden Rules for Data Visualisation Best Practice. In this post, Gather offer 3 golden rules to considering data visualisation for the best possible User Experience. You can read more, here.

Digital People
Digital People Manchester open for business! Is the North West the fastest growing region in the UK? Digital People are looking to build long-lasting relationships and serve more customers in the North. You can find out more, here.

Seven Days in Search. Keep up with the latest insights into SEO with Blueclaw’s weekly Search update. This week, they explain the Fred Google algorithm update and SEMPO’s survey results. Find out more, here.

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World First, Space 48, Click Consult and More

Each week we like to keep up-to-date with our exhibition partners by sharing their latest news and insights. This week we’re featuring Space 48’s ‘Magento Imagine’ mini guide, World First explain 4 ways to finance your international trading plans, Click Consult’s insights into disruptive technologies, Fat Media announce that they are going for gold with Umbraco and Dream Agility explain how to value your sales leads as if they occurred online.

Space 48

With Magneto Imagine 2017 now happening in Las Vegas, Space 48 have put together this handy preview guide to give you all of the key information and exciting things happening at the event. You can check it out, here.

World First

In this post, World First have put together a few ways to finance your plans to get the most out of international trading. Find out more, here.

Click Consult

Disruptive technologies are changing search marketing, Click Consult explain how and why the industry should react. Find out more, here.

Fat Media

This month, Fat Media announced that they are now an Umbraco Gold Partner agency. To find out more about Fat Media and Umbraco, click here.

Dream Agility

This post explains how Dream Agility have made it possible to give lead generation websites, whose sales are offline, the same advantages as online-only retailers. Read more, here.

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UKFast, NuBlue, Mabo and More

Our Weekly Round Up shares insights and news from our exhibition partners at eCommerce Show North. This week we’re featuring Mabo’s insights into PPC, UKFast’s reasons to be cheerful, NuBlue explain how to grab a viewer’s attention, dotmailer discuss how to bounce back after a blunder and Digitl announce the return of the Manchester Multichannel Conference.

NuBlue – 8 Seconds Away
In this post, Nublue explain how video content creators have 8 seconds to grab a viewers attention and if you have not gained their attention in that time they will move on to something else. They also explain how the perfect video placed on an eCommerce website can really help to increase sales. You can read more, here.

UKFast – Reasons to be Cheerful
This week, UKFast celebrated Internaional Day of Happiness by posting four reasons to be cheerful. You can check them out, here.

In this blog, Mabo discuss Pay Per Click management and why it is so important. They also explain what you should be looking for in a PPC management agency so you can get the most out of your paid ads. You can read more, here.

dotmailer – How to bounce back after a mistake
Everyone makes mistakes now and then, the most important thing is learning how to recover. In this post, dotmailer explain how to bounce back after making an email marketing blunder. You can read all about it, here.

Digitl – The Manchester Multichannel Conference 2017
This week Digitl announced the return of the Manchester Multichannel Conference 2017. If you would like to or find out more about the event, click here.

Endless Gain, Finch and Nosto

This week we’re featuring Endless Gain’s research into the Pain of Paying, advice from Finch about Adwords Attribution and Nosto share 3 brands with fantastic blogs and what you can learn from them.

Endless Gain – The Pain of Paying
In this post, Endless Gain explain the psychology behind the ‘Pain of Paying’. This is where consumers factor in how much they want to purchase whatever is on offer and the pain they feel as a result of spending the money. To read more, click here.

Finch – How Adwords Attribution leads to more Successful Campaigns
This week, Finch explain Adwords Attribution and how it can be used to influence customers earlier in the clickstream and how it can better manipulate the allocation of your spend based on what adverts and keywords the user engages with before purchasing. To read more, click here.

Nosto- 3 Brands with Great Blogs and What you can learn from them
In this blog, Nosto shares three brands who are using their blogs to build relationships with their customers, show brand personality and also to position their stock in an ‘aspirational and inspiring way’. To read more, click here.

Temando, Bronto and Business Growth Hub

Every week we will be sharing insights and news from our exhibition partners at eCommerce Show North.
This week we’ll be looking at Temando’s research into Baby Boomers, Bronto’s quick fix for Email Engagement and Business Growth Hub’s secret to success.

Temando – Buying Into Baby Boomers
After surveying 4128 shoppers around the world, Temando were able to uncover the online shopping habits and expectations of Baby Boomers. This blog shows 3 reasons why retailers should rethink their approach to this lucrative age group. To read more, click here.

Bronto – A Quick Fix for Email Engagement
Engagement, strategy and re-engagement. In this blog, Bronto offer a quick fix for increasing email engagement and avoiding the dreaded spam folder. To read more, click here.

Business Growth Hub – Women in Manufacturing – the secret to her success?
Business Growth Hub celebrates International Women’s Day by producing a series of blogs to look closely at the role of women within different business sectors. This blog explores women in the manufacturing sector and what can be done to encourage more women to consider a career in the industry. To read more, click here.

To see the full list of exhibitors, click here.

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New Exhibitor Update

We are thrilled to announce that some of the world’s best eCommerce talent is being drawn to eCommerce Show North. Here are some of the fantastic companies that are already involved:
Endless Gain
Space 48
Business Growth Hub
Click Consult
CTI Digital
Digital People
Dream Agility
eCommerce Club
Fat Media
Fluid Digital