Thursday, May 17, 2012

My collection of digital marketing infographics

The last few weeks, I started to collect interesting infographics and images about (international) digital marketing. My collection starts getting into shape. I am planning to make a few infographics myself also the next few weeks. My Pinterest board now has infographics about:

Traditional Marketing vs New Marketing. An infographic about the change from push to earned marketing. Of course this is changing the landscape at this moment, but in some cases traditional marketing remains valuable.

Facebook's Timeline tutorial. An infographic with some advice about how to setup your new facebook page for organisations. 

A social media triage This one can be very helpful if you try to setup a plan for your company about how to respond at social media. Every case is unique, so also needs to be treated this way. But this infographic gives some guidelines for the people that deal with the comments posted at social media in the first line. 

Sometimes explaining is so easy with an infographic. If you need to explain how affiliate marketing works, just show this infographic

If you need to know a little more about how people around the world spend their time online this infographic gives some highlights.

We all agree that customer service is important, it always was, but since the customer is getting into control and the customer's voice can make or break companies very easily nowadays, it is always good to remind yourself about keeping your customers happy.

Much more images and infographics about digital marketing at my pinterest online marketing pinboard. I will ad more the next few weeks and try to make a few myself as well. 

Monday, May 14, 2012

Differences in international webdesign and usability

International Website Design is more then just translating. (but if you translate do it correct otherwise you keep on closing a shower door)
I am wondering about international usability and design, so I decided to do some research.Differences in design and usability in various countries can make or break a site.

Of course people are the same world over and the main usability guidelines remain the same. However there are country specific things to take into account that can make your site work better in specific countries. With the emerging markets rapidly growing and the global aspects of internet, it is critical to understand the differences of your international customers.

In a few European website projects, the biggest problems in the fields of usability and design were the following points.
  • Character problems in on site search engine and the connected emails used for email marketing. Special characters necessary for some languages gave problems in displaying.
  • Display of local currency's. Local currency's were changed at most places, but the system did not change the local currency's at some far ends of the webshop.
  • Confirmation pages and VAT differences.
  • Length of text fields (some words are just much longer in other languages, so make buttons and text fields scalable).
  • Differences in countries in shopping cart process (for example delivery points or SMS services that are not yet common in all countries).
  • Payment methods and configurations.
  • Legal differences between countries can have impact at the usability. It might be necessary in to change your product detail page for your webshop because of legal aspects. But there are more differences that have an impact at the usability.
  • Differences in product details (your product information system) for example voltage differences between countries. Powerplugs are different in the UK then the rest of Europe.
  • Speed. Make sure (and this is especially the case with global websites) your site speed is fast in every country you target for.
So keep these things in mind when setting up an international website. Also read this article, I wrote earlier, about Geert Hofstede's 5 dimensions model to better understand your international audience.

Local websites or one central website?

If you are active international at the web, you often have to make a choice between a central website, that is copied to local versions (often only translated) or a local website. Many company's choose a central website, to be able to have the most control and stability. But often this is not the most effective way in terms of the goals you want to reach with this website.
I think a mixed form is the best and is also possible. A hybrid model with the advantages from a central website (stability, control) and the flexibility from local websites (design, seo, landingpages etc).
It is very important to think about this when you write the requirements for your new international website.

Don't forget, local sites give more trust. In fragmented Europe this is very important, but even in English speaking Australia, users prefer local sites to foreign sites.
Research showed for example that Australians, when scanning SERP listings, prefer URL's with the .au suffix. Logical of course, but these are things to remind yourself when participating in an international internet project.

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