[Source: This article was Published in tamebay.com By Sasha Fedorenko - Uploaded by the Association Member: Issac Avila]

What social media can not do is to deliver the next day or same day and that is where Amazon excels. All young consumers want everything now, so fast shipping becomes a major factor where a person shops. This is why Amazon will continue to dominate.

It is true. Not myself but my partner and her friends not even gen z but 20s early 30s have pretty much been brought up by social media. She gets so many of her ideas from insta, Pinterest, and Facebook.

Wedding cake, singer, flowers, invitations, bridesmaid dresses even my groomsmen gifts have all come from social media for a wedding next month. We’re even picked our seats on our flight for the honeymoon because of a video someone put on youtube, saved us a few hundred quid on pointless upgrades.
You can add links to most social sites to websites or marketplaces.

Direct checkout is going to be the big game changer. Amazon will still dominate on price and be the place for big box shifters and penny chasing, but social will become so much more important for smaller traders.

Categorized in Social

Incorporating Pinterest into your online marketing strategy is good -- getting that content to rank in Google search is better. Columnist Thomas Stern explains how to increase the search visibility of your Pinterest content.

In mid-2014, Pinterest introduced Guided Search, a feature that greatly expanded the information available to marketers by providing insight to popular keyword phrases for boards and Pins. Unfortunately, this feature requires inputting keywords on a per-board or per-Pin basis, which can be incredibly time-consuming for most marketers.

In early 2015, our team received access to the Pinterest advertising beta program. This granted our team further insight into keyword targeting opportunities around our clients’ products. While this was a great step toward ensuring visibility on the platform, the targeting and keyword insights were considerably limited, undoubtedly something that Pinterest is working to improve.

We decided to take matters into our own hands. After all, we’ve seen the tremendous performance with Pinterest when utilized correctly for clients. Similar performance has also been validated by numerous case studies, most recently by Marketing Sherpa earlier this year.

Google + Pinterest = 

After Pinterest took off in popularity a few years ago, our SEO team noticed more and more page-one Google results that included Pinterest. Most recently, we’ve come across indexed boards and Pins in image results, along with a unique mobile result that displays multiple Pin images underneath a link to the board.

SEL 2 pinterest google

Clearly, Google considers Pinterest content to be authoritative, so we decided to see exactly how Pinterest compares to other websites in terms of a unique number of keyword rankings on page one.

Pinterest Keyword Ranking

Using SEMRush’s extensive database of organic listings, we see that Pinterest ranks #8 among all websites for a number of keywords ranking in Google’s top 20 results — just ahead of eBay, Yellow Pages and TripAdvisor. With nearly five million ranked keywords to evaluate, we’ve put together a method to identify the commonalities between keywords and categories.

Step 1: Identify Commonly Occurring Keywords

Considering the sheer volume of keywords, an initial filtering process is required to make sense of the data. We felt that it was easiest to identify the most commonly occurring keywords to create initial groupings. The following example includes the most frequently occurring keywords with adjectives and pronouns omitted (cool, cheap, her, him, etc.).

Pinterest Google Keywords

Step 2: Build & Prioritize Keyword Phrases

Outside of branded search, Pinterest results on Google are primarily long-tail, descriptive phrases. To help identify these phrases, an additional round of keyword insight is needed. The following example takes the “home & home furnishings” keywords from step one and aligns them with the most searched pairings that Pinterest ranks on Google.

Pinterest Keyword Combinations

When reviewing these combinations, it’s immediately clear that a theme exists across the reviewed home and furniture category: Pinterest users are interested in smaller homes and furniture that accommodates a smaller space.

Putting this into a marketing context, brands like West Elm, Ikea and CB2 could greatly benefit from creating Pinterest boards around space-saving furniture offerings. All three brands reference small spaces on a dedicated Pinterest board, but none seem to quite capture the varied intent (room type, furniture type) of Pinterest searchers.

Step 3: Optimize With Pinterest Ranking Factors In Mind

While researching ways to utilize Google data to inform Pinterest keyword strategies, we identified some slight differences between boards and Pins that rank at the top of each search engine (Pinterest vs. Google). On Google specifically, it seemed that boards and Pins with a high degree of interaction (repins) were favored. On Pinterest, it’s a bit more difficult to pin down in entirety (no pun intended), but Google’s ranking factors in addition to others are certainly in place. Regardless of search engine, it’s important to keep the following optimization principles in mind:

  • Conduct Keyword Research. As is evident in the aforementioned furniture example, there is an abundance of keyword combinations that can help brands align with how users search.
  • Be Descriptive. Authentic and utilitarian content must coincide with keyword strategies. On Pinterest, this means creating boards that are common in theme but also provide enough specificity to align with users’ needs (e.g., “Small Living Room Ideas” or “Small Space Living”). It also means Pins should have well-written descriptions that thoroughly describe what the image is about.
  • Use Markup. One of the simplest ways to ensure the content from your website and/or blog is optimized for Pinterest is to use Rich Pins in conjunction with the appropriate markup (different types of markup are supported for recipes, movies, articles, products or places). We highly recommend identifying which relevant content types are on your website and implementing markup ASAP.
  • Be Active. Just like Facebook, the level of engagement of content on Pinterest helps algorithms on the platform determine which boards and pins should rank. Brands often overlook the fact that pinning other users’ and websites’ content is common practice on the platform, and brands can be rewarded for participating.

 Source: This article was published searchengineland.com By Thomas Stern

Categorized in Search Engine

Visual search engines will be at the center of the next phase of evolution for the search industry, with Pinterest, Google, and Bing all announcing major developments recently. 

How do they stack up today, and who looks best placed to offer the best visual searchexperience?

Historically, the input-output relationship in search has been dominated by text. Even as the outputs have become more varied (video and image results, for example), the inputs have been text-based. This has restricted and shaped the potential of search engines, as they try to extract more contextual meaning from a relatively static data set of keywords.

Visual search engines are redefining the limits of our language, opening up a new avenue of communication between people and computers. If we view language as a fluid system of signs and symbols, rather than fixed set of spoken or written words, we arrive at a much more compelling and profound picture of the future of search.

Our culture is visual, a fact that visual search engines are all too eager to capitalize on.

visual culture

Already, specific ecommerce visual search technologies abound: Amazon, Walmart, and ASOS are all in on the act. These companies’ apps turn a user’s smartphone camera into a visual discovery tool, searching for similar items based on whatever is in frame. This is just one use case, however, and the potential for visual search is much greater than just direct ecommerce transactions.

After a lot of trial and error, this technology is coming of age. We are on the cusp of accurate, real-time visual search, which will open a raft of new opportunities for marketers.

Below, we review the progress made by three key players in visual search: Pinterest, Google, and Bing.

Pinterest

Pinterest’s visual search technology is aimed at carving out a position as the go-to place for discovery searches. Their stated aim echoes the opening quote from this article: “To help you find things when you don’t have the words to describe them.”

Pinterest 200M_0

Rather than tackle Google directly, Pinterest has decided to offer up something subtly different to users – and advertisers. People go to Pinterest to discover new ideas, to create mood boards, to be inspired.  Pinterest therefore urges its 200 million users to “search outside the box”, in what could be deciphered as a gentle jibe at Google’s ever-present search bar.

All of this is driven by Pinterest Lens, a sophisticated visual search tool that uses a smartphone camera to scan the physical world, identify objects, and return related results. It is available via the smartphone app, but Pinterest’s visual search functionality can be used on desktop through the Google Chrome extension too.

Pinterest’s vast data set of over 100 billion Pins provides the perfect training material for machine learning applications. As a result, new connections are forged between the physical and digital worlds, using graphics processing units (GPUs) to accelerate the process.

pinterest object detection

In practice, Pinterest Lens works very well and is getting noticeably better with time. The image detection is impressively accurate and the suggestions for related Pins are relevant.

Below, the same object has been selected for a search using Pinterest and also Samsung visual search:

Pinterest_Samsung

The differences in the results are telling.

On the left, Pinterest recognizes the object’s shape, its material, its purpose, but also the defining features of the design. This allows for results that go deeper than a direct search for another black mug. Pinterest knows that the less tangible, stylistic details are what really interest its users. As such, we see results for mugs in different colors, but that are of a similar style.

On the right, Samsung’s Bixby assistant recognizes the object, its color, and its purpose. Samsung’s results are powered by Amazon, and they are a lot less inspiring than the options served up by Pinterest. The image is turned into a keyword search for [black coffee mugs], which renders the visual search element a little redundant.

Visual search engines work best when they express something for us that we would struggle to say in words. Pinterest understands and delivers on this promise better than most.

Pinterest visual search: The key facts

  • Over 200 million monthly users
  • Focuses on the ‘discovery’ phase of search
  • Pinterest Lens is the central visual search technology
  • Great platform for retailers, with obvious monetization possibilities
  • Paid search advertising is a core growth area for the company
  • Increasingly effective visual search results, particularly on the deeper level of aesthetics

Google

Google made early waves in visual search with the launch of Google Goggles. This Android app was launched in 2010 and allowed users to search using their smartphone camera. It works well on famous landmarks, for example, but it has not been updated significantly in quite some time.

It seemed unlikely that Google would remain silent on visual search for long, and this year’s I/O development revealed what the search giant has been working on in the background.

google lens

Google Lens, which will be available via the Photos app and Google Assistant, will be a significant overhaul of the earlier Google Goggles initiative.

Any nomenclative similarities to Pinterest’s product may be more than coincidental. Google has stealthily upgraded its image and visual search engines of late, ushering in results that resemble Pinterest’s format:

Google_Image_Search

Pinterest_image_search

Google’s ‘similar items’ product was another move to cash in on the discovery phase of search, showcasing related results that might further pique a consumer’s curiosity.

Google Lens will provide the object detection technology to link all of this together in a powerful visual search engine. In its BETA format, Lens offers the following categories for visual searches:

  • All
  • Clothing
  • Shoes
  • Handbags
  • Sunglasses
  • Barcodes
  • Products
  • Places
  • Cats
  • Dogs
  • Flowers

Some developers have been given the chance to try an early version of Lens, with many reporting mixed results:

Lens_BETA

Looks like Google doesn’t recognize its own Home smart hub… (Source: XDA Developers)

These are very early days for Google Lens, so we can expect this technology to improve significantly as it learns from its mistakes and successes.

When it does, Google is uniquely placed to make visual search a powerful tool for users and advertisers alike. The opportunities for online retailers via paid search are self-evident, but there is also huge potential for brick-and-mortar retailers to capitalize on hyper-local searches.

For all its impressive advances, Pinterest does not possess the ecosystem to permeate all aspects of a user’s life in the way Google can. With a new Pixel smartphone in the works, Google can use visual search alongside voice search to unite its software and hardware. For advertisers using DoubleClick to manage their search and display ads, that presents a very appealing prospect.

We should also anticipate that Google will take this visual search technology further in the near future.

Google is set to open its ARCore product up to all developers, which will bring with it endless possibilities for augmented reality. ARCore is a direct rival to Apple’s ARKit and it could provide the key to unlock the full potential of visual search. We should also not rule out another move into the wearables market, potentially through a new version of Google Glass.

Google visual search: The key facts

  • Google Goggles launched in 2010 as an early entrant to the visual search market
  • Goggles still functions well on some landmarks, but struggles to isolate objects in crowded frames
  • Google Lens scheduled to launch later this year (Date TBA) as a complete overhaul of Goggles
  • Lens will link visual search to Google search and Google Maps
  • Object detection is not perfected, but the product is in BETA
  • Google is best placed to create an advertising product around its visual search engine, once the technology increases in accuracy

Bing

Microsoft had been very quiet on this front since sunsetting its Bing visual search product in 2012. It never really took off and perhaps the appetite wasn’t quite there yet among a mass public for a visual search engine.

Recently, Bing made an interesting re-entry to the fray with the announcement of a completely revamped visual search engine:

This change of tack has been directed by advances in artificial intelligence that can automatically scan images and isolate items.

The early versions of this search functionality required input from users to draw boxes around certain areas of an image for further inspection. Bing announced recently that this will no longer be needed, as the technology has developed to automate this process.

The layout of visual search results on Bing is eerily similar to Pinterest. If imitation is the sincerest form of flattery, Pinterest should be overwhelmed with flattery by now.

Bing_Pinterest

The visual search technology can hone in on objects within most images, and then suggests further items that may be of interest to the user. This is only available on Desktop for the moment, but Mobile support will be added soon.

The results are patchy in places, but when an object is detected relevant suggestions are made. In the example below, a search made using an image of a suit leads to topical, shoppable links:

Bing_Suit

It does not, however, take into account the shirt or tie – the only searchable aspect is the suit.

Things get patchier still for searches made using crowded images. A search for living room decor ideas made using an image will bring up some relevant results, but will not always hone in on specific items.

As with all machine learning technologies, this product will continue to improve and for now, Bing is a step ahead of Google in this aspect. Nonetheless, Microsoft lacks the user base and the mobile hardware to launch a real assault on the visual search market in the long run.

Visual search thrives on data; in this regard, both Google and Pinterest have stolen a march on Bing.

Bing visual search: The key facts

  • Originally launched in 2009, but removed in 2012 due to lack of uptake
  • Relaunched in July 2017, underpinned by AI to identify and analyze objects
  • Advertisers can use Bing visual search to place shoppable images
  • The technology is in its infancy, but the object recognition is quite accurate
  • Desktop only for now, but mobile will follow soon

So, who has the best visual search engine?

For now, Pinterest. With billions of data points and some seasoned image search professionals driving the technology, it provides the smoothest and most accurate experience. It also does something unique by grasping the stylistic features of objects, rather than just their shape or color. As such, it alters the language at our disposal and extends the limits of what is possible in search marketing.

Bing has made massive strides in this arena of late, but it lacks the killer application that would make it stand out enough to draw searchers from Google. Bing visual search is accurate and functional, but does not create connections to related items in the way that Pinterest can.

The launch of Google Lens will surely shake up this market altogether, too. If Google can nail down automated object recognition (which it undoubtedly will), Google Lens could be the product that links traditional search to augmented reality. The resources and the product suite at Google’s disposal make it the likely winner in the long run.

Source: This article was published searchenginewatch.com By Clark Boyd

Categorized in Search Engine

If you find an item you like online — an article of clothing or a piece of furniture, for example — you’ll now be able to find that item, or similar items, on Pinterest without ever visiting Pinterest’s website.

The new feature is part of an update the company launched Tuesday to its Chrome extension, the browser tool that lets you save images you see online back to Pinterest as you surf the web.

The new tool lets you select an item in any photograph online, and ask Pinterest to surface similar items using its image recognition software.

For example: If you see an image of sunglasses you like on Nordstrom.com, you could use the extension to browse similar glasses from Pinterest without ever leaving Nordstrom’s website.

If you click on one of the search results, you’ll then be taken to Pinterest

The idea here is that Pinterest wants to be the search engine for images, and that includes images you see on other websites or even images you come across in the real world. As co-founder Evan Sharp explained it at a press event last month: “You shouldn’t have to put your thoughts into words to find great ideas.”

The “visual search” technology is not new — you could already use it, but only on Pinterest’s website. Eventually, Pinterest would love to help users buy the products they find see online but don’t know where to buy them.

But that won’t be the main priority for the new browser tool, at least not right away. While it’s possible Pinterest’s recommended images may include similar-looking items that are for sale through the service, called “buyable pins,” the company is “not prioritizing” those kinds of pins, according to a company spokesperson.

It also won’t show promoted pins in search results, which means the new browser extension won’t bring in ad dollars.

But it will get people searching Pinterest more often. At least that’s the hope.

The new extension is the latest in a line of Pinterest features that could rival Google’s image search functionality. The challenge for Pinterest, though, will be getting people to actually use them, especially this new extension. The new feature not only requires that people use Chrome, but they must then download a browser extension, two obvious barriers.

It could also rub some retailers the wrong way. Nordstrom may not want users browsing sunglasses on Pinterest instead of its own online store. Brands can opt out of the extension if they want to, but Pinterest hopes they won’t.

“This is early days for online visual discovery tools,” a company spokesperson wrote in an email to Recode. “As we go, we'll incorporate partner and Pinner feedback and continue improving these products to ensure value for everyone.”

The extension is launching globally on Chrome on Tuesday and is “coming to other Pinterest browser extensions in the future,” according to the company’s blog.

Author : KURT WAGNER

Source : http://www.recode.net/2017/3/7/14837702/pinterest-chrome-extension-image-search

Categorized in Search Engine

American business publication Fast Company has released its list of the most innovative companies of 2017. The annual list ranks enterprises that “tap both heartstrings and purse strings and use the engine of commerce to make a difference in the world” according to its website.

Amongst the top ten artificial intelligence and machine learning companies are tech giants Google and IBM and startup Iris AI. AI companies also dominated the top 10 global businesses across all sectors with Amazon at number one.

Amazon was selected as the leading company for “offering even more, even fast and even smarter”. The cloud computing giant which is America’s largest e-commerce company is worth $390 billion. Google was a close second due to its array of projects using artificial intelligence that are designed to reflect the search giant’s original mission: organizing the world’s information and making it universally accessible and useful.

Uber, Apple, Snap (the company that founded Snapchat), Facebook, Netflix and Twilio were also featured in the list. Meaning that nine out of the top ten most innovative companies are using artificial intelligence or machine learning.

The artificial intelligence top 10 featured companies ranging massively in size from startup Iris AI with 8 employees to IBM with almost 400,000. Here’s the top 10 in order:

01 Google

“When Google CEO Larry Page created a new holding company called Alphabet in 2015, initiatives such as self-driving cars and health tech got divvied up into new companies, and Google became an Alphabet division with a sharper focus on internet services and software. Today’s Google, now led by CEO Sundar Pichai, still dominates web search and online advertising sales. It has the most widely used mobile operating system (Android) and web browser (Chrome). Other venerable offerings, such as YouTube, Gmail, and Google Maps, continue to be the 800-pound gorillas of their respective categories.”

02 IBM

“Over the past decade, IBM has been moving away from its old business of making and selling computer hardware and transforming itself into something a little more modern: a company that offers services like cloud computing and data analytics.

Since Watson became commercially available, the technology has been applied to everything from cancer research, where Watson is used to sort through and decipher millions of medical journals, to retail, where Watson is being used to help shoppers locate exactly what they’re shopping for or similar items. As of 2017, Watson is already available to more than 400 million people and patients.”

03 Baidu

“In 2016, Baidu's CEO Robin Li publicly stated that the company is actively integrating artificial intelligence technologies into all of Baidu's major businesses, including the search engine, as well as new businesses such as autonomous driving. In August, Baidu, Stanford, and the University of Washington released an academic study demonstrating that voice input is more accurate and three times faster than human typing on smartphones.”

04 SoundHound

“In 2016 SoundHound launched its Hound virtual assistant, taking on Siri, Amazon’s Alexa, and the Google Assistant, and there are now 20,000 developers on the Houndify platform, with the service having already been integrated into 150 domains. Among those enterprises who have implemented it are Samsung, Nvidia, Sony’s Xperia, Yelp, and Uber.”

05 Zebra Medical Vision

“For using deep learning to predict and prevent disease”

06 Prisma

“For making masterpieces out of snapshots”

07 Iris AI

“For speeding up scientific research by surfacing relevant data”

08 Pinterest

“For serving up a universe of relevant pins to each and every user”

09 TrademarkVision

“For helping startups make their mark without any legal confusion”

10 Descartes Labs

“For preventing food shortages by predicting crop yields”

Source : http://www.access-ai.com/articles/10-most-innovative-companies-ai-and-machine-learning

Categorized in Science & Tech

Pinterest said today it’s launching three new products today that will point out specific elements in pictures — whether viewed live through a camera or through a typical image search — and use them as a jumping point for search.

All of these are designed to keep Pinterest coming back over and over to discover ideas based on images. Pinterest has been increasingly trying to close the gap from a user initially viewing an image to being able to jump to ideas and products with a single step, and adding these new in-image search capabilities is another step toward that.

“Early information technology used words to connect ideas, like hyperlinks,” co-founder and chief product officer Evan Sharp said. “Search engines we built today have drafted on that, they rely on words to get you answers to your questions. But when it comes to searching for ideas, words aren’t the right way. Sometimes you don’t really know what you’re looking for until you see it.”

So let’s break down each product, starting with the most important one, Lens. That gives users a way to open their camera, look at any image and Pinterest’s Lens feature will automatically pick apart the objects in an image. That can drill down into foods, animals, or even patterns like hexagons. That gives users the ability to start searching for related elements through that. Lens is launching in beta today on iOS.

pinterest lens results

The main reason why this is so critical is that it means Pinterest may be able to capture that brief moment that a customer might have to just make an impulse purchase. That moment can be incredibly fleeting, and lowering the friction toward seeing something in the real world and making that purchase can capture that in a way that other companies may not be able.

Pinterest is also updating its visual search when it comes to finding specific products, isolating each product within an image. So if you’re looking at a pin from a company that may be selling a jacket, it will also pick up the image of the boots and let you jump to them. Users can also jump to additional related content to those products or elements in the photo. With most of Pinterest’s content coming from Pinterest, this gives Pinterest a way to seamlessly jump through products — and offers businesses a way to build awareness for their other products.

pinterest shop the look

Instant Ideas adds a small little circle to the bottom of each pin, allowing them to jump straight into related elements and gather additional ideas related to that topic. This one seems pointed toward getting users to find products and ideas that they’ll save on their Pinboards — like recipes or potential styles.

pinterest instant ideas

Pinterest has largely become synonymous with visual search, which has become the company’s specialty and point of differentiation against other networks. With 150 million users, Pinterest is geared toward getting people to come in and start sort of wandering around to discover ideas and products they might not have known they wanted.

However, we’re starting to see some of these tools trickle down into other services, though maybe in a different fashion. Houzz, for example, breaks down specific products in a photo of a room or home that users can purchase. There are startups like Clarifai want to equip small businesses with similar visual search tools, though they take more of a metadata and tagging approach that can train their algorithms. And there’s always Google, which has invested heavily in visual search, but has yet to necessarily weaponize it in the same way Pinterest has for potential advertisers.

 

Nevertheless, these Pinterest products are a potential gold mine for those marketers. Pinterest is able to potentially engage with users at different points in their purchasing lifetime. Whether that’s in the mode where they are looking to discover ideas — and build brand awareness — to drilling them into finding a specific product and buying it, Pinterest offers a wide range of advertising products to get at each part of the customer’s shopping timeline.

Pinterest is going to have to solidify its pitch that it is one of the best visual search companies in order to continue to woo advertisers, which may still be treating Pinterest as more of a curiosity than a consistent ad buy. Pinterest is going to have to battle Snap, which is expected to go public next year, as a tool for building brand awareness and capture a potential customer’s attention at the beginning of their shopping lifetime. And there’s always Facebook, which has become a mainstay of marketers.

That’s going to come through a combination of new ad products — like its new addition of search ads — and also by improving its suite of products that it can present to advertisers as unique and differentiated from traditional ad buys. Pinterest, while growing quickly, was a bit off targets it initially set in early 2015 and has to figure out how to re-adjust its expectations as to what kind of advertising and consumer products marketers want.

“These three new products make anything in the world an entry point to the 100 billion ideas in Pinterest,” Pinterest CEO and co-foudner Ben Silbermann said. “Together they create a whole new discovery experience that’s unlike anything that’s out there today. You can get ideas whether you’re opening the app or walking through town. The more people the use it, the better the results become, the more we can recommend inspiring ideas.”

Author : Matthew Lynley

Source : https://techcrunch.com/2017/02/08/pinterest-adds-visual-search-for-elements-in-images-and-through-your-camera/

Categorized in Social

There is no question about it that social media is changing faster than we can ever imagine. If you utilize social media for business, then you would do well to pay attention to 10 unexpected social media statistics, figures and facts and how it will change your perspective of social media.

Rethink Your Social Strategy Based on Social Media Facts and Figures

There are various facts and figures coming from prominent social media giants such as Facebook, LinkedIn, Instagram, Pinterest, Google Plus, Twitter, etc that will have your head spinning. Not only that, it will forever change the way you think about these platforms and the impact it will have on your bottom line should you utilize them effectively. Let’s take a look.

1. Twitter, Google Plus and Facebook managed to attract a large number of older users who fall under the 45 to 64 year age bracket. Twitter comes out top as it is growing a lot faster when it comes to users aged between 55 to 64 years old. It goes to show that you should not just focus your content on younger users.

2. Another surprising fact worthy of mentioning is that Facebook has over 700 million active mobile users and counting. Did you know that more than 80 percent of Facebook users are situated outside Canada and the U.S? What is more, up to 75 percent of marketers think they know what consumers want, but only 35 percent of these actually asked their buyers.

3. While Facebook holds the number one spot, Google Plus claimed its spot as the second most popular social network and it keeps growing. The last update showed that Google Plus have over 300 million monthly users. Google Plus managed to get more and more people interested as they are curious how it all works out.

4. It is crazy to think that most smartphone users aged between 18 to 44 spend close to 40 minutes each day connecting to Facebook of which most of their time is being utilized browsing news feeds. This is a wake up call for business owners to ensure their content displays properly on smaller screens. Besides, more than 4 billion people access social media via their mobile devices.

5. LinkedIn as the biggest professional network reached just over 330 million users of which 107 million happen to be from the USA. What is more, LinkedIn caters for 200 countries and is available in 20 languages if not more. The average user spends close to 20 minutes on LinkedIn. The number of pageviews reached in excess of 28 billion. Best of all, every second, two new users join this social media powerhouse. Were you aware that up to 42 percent if not more, of LinkedIn visits originate from mobile devices?

6. It’s been said that men predominantly use Google Plus, while women prefer Pinterest. Statistics have shown that up to 80 percent of Pinterest users are women, which may be the case due to food being the main category discussed. While close to 70 percent register Google Plus users are men. Pinterest is now more than 70 million plus strong and just over 23 percent use it at least once a day.

7. YouTube that is now owned by Google happens to be the second largest search engine as more than one billion visitors frequent this site. They boast over 100 hours of uploaded videos per minute. It is madness to think that more than 6 billion hours of video are being watched on a monthly basis. Business owners might be surprised to find that over 40 percent of YouTube traffic originates from mobile users. Did you know that as much as 1 billion mobile video views are being reported by YouTube?

8. Do not underestimate the power of blogs in terms of its ability to strengthen social media reach as more than 12 million users engage in blogging via prominent social networks. After all, businesses who uses blogs manage to generate 67 percent more leads than their rivals. This is why over 23 percent of marketers are investing in social media and blogging. By doing so business owners who blog at least 15 times a month generate five times as much traffic than those who do not bother to blog at all.

9. Instagram boasts that more than 20 billion photos have been uploaded to date. It sure is interesting to learn that one and a half million Instagram users are based in Thailand. As much as 50 million people signed up in the last 6 months. In addition, Instagram ensures that users receive over one billion like each day. They are now just over 200 million strong and counting. Furthermore, close to 25 percent of Instagram users are teenagers.

10. Twitter is a very popular medium for bridging the gap between social media and mass media. Television broadcasters are using Twitter to attract comments and feedback on their shows. What makes it so powerful is its simplicity, news breaking capability and feeds done in real time. They average at around 288 plus million active users according to Global Web Index. It’s been reported that they have well over 500 million registered users. Interestingly, China has the most users on Twitter. Eighty percent of Twitter users access the social media network from their mobile phones. Moving forward, Twitter is one to be watched as it is grabbing more customers than ever before.
Whether you like it or not, these social media statistics, figures and facts reveal how important it is to rethink your social media business strategies. It is even stated that social media tops porn as it is now the number one pass time for many.

It is a fact that social media is worth its weight in gold. Social media is not just a passing fad or phase as it continues to grow and newer and better platforms crop up all the time. Therefore, putting an effort into your social media strategies will go a long way to put you on top of your game. It is considered the smart way of doing business. This is why many business owners should make it their business to make use of the 10 unexpected social media statistics, figures and facts mentioned to position themselves in front of a lucrative market.

Source : http://www.toptensocialmedia.com/social-media-social-metrics/how-10-unexpected-social-media-statistics-figures-and-facts-will-change-your-outlook-on-social-media/

Google's Keyword Planner may go deep, but does it go wide enough to fulfill modern SEO's need for semantically relevant phrases? Columnist Clay Cazier explores one alternative data source: Pinterest.

One of the foundations of good SEO is making sure your site content is relevant to what you offer and that this content is optimized to use the same language commonly used by consumers.

For example, most outfitters would be advised to develop content and optimize around their stock of cowboy boots rather than referring to their items as western boots or roper boots.

pinterest0

The table above, pulled from the Google AdWords Keyword Planner, gives us the cold, statistical justification behind this decision — we want to talk about our cowboy boots because 10x more people think of what we offer in those terms.

But as Google’s organic ranking formula has become more complex, the limitations of Keyword Planner are beginning to show.

Why Pinterest?

SEO’s job isn’t to focus all clients on the biggest average monthly search number. Furthermore, SEO is no longer a math game where we rely on density ratios to target that handful of short-tail keywords.

We’re now challenged to present the long-tail keywords relating to our goods and services. And lately, we are learning more and more about how the use of semantically related phrases is one way “good” content is recognized and rewarded with rankings.

In the modern SEO world, phrases like roper boots become more important not necessarily because of their monthly search volume, but because of the semantic relationship between ropers and cowboy boots and the (likely) higher conversion rate that could be delivered by such a niche term.

Keyword Planner is good for paid search campaigns targeting transactional keywords, and it’s even fairly good at exposing long-tail keyword variants, but it is woefully inadequate at exposing the semantics surrounding those transactional phrases.

Where can we turn for a deeper semantic understanding of these (still transactional) phrases? There have been countless articles suggesting tactics ranging from Google Instant, Google Related Searches and keyword mining using hashtags found in the social world.

While those are absolutely valid, worthwhile methods, it struck me that Pinterest would be a particularly useful place for retailers to mine keywords because:

According to Internet Retailer, Pinterest users’ average order value is $123.50, which is about 126 percent more than Facebook users’ $54.64 average order value.
Pinterest is a particularly visual medium, which aligns well with the increasing dominance of mobile in consumers’ search process.

Pinterest has much more of a sales/retail focus than Facebook, Instagram or Twitter, making the information found there more likely to coincide with what purchasers are looking for.

So let’s look at how to use Pinterest for keyword research. Our goal is twofold:

Near term, Pinterest keyword research can help guide Pinterest board titles, Pinterest pin descriptions and/or image filenames to drive qualified referral traffic.
From a longer term, particularly “SEO” point of view, Pinterest keyword research can guide content used in retail category descriptions, content used as blog topics, images used, image filenames and/or even retail categories or facets.

Pinterest Option 1: “Pinterest Instant”

Let’s start with the easiest method: watching the phrases that populate within Pinterest search as you type. The example below is a simple one — “cowboy boots” is the primary focus of a client, and they’d like to know popular ways people are searching for the item other than by gender and color.

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Go one step further and drill down into one of those suggestions, and you’ll see that outfits by season and looks with jeans are hot topics.

This can not only direct blog, “lookbook” and social media content, but it should also direct the navigation, landing pages and e-commerce database filters configured on retailers’ sites.

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Pinterest Option 2: Guided Search

I’ll admit, Pinterest Instant does not yield a ton of results unless you drill down and re-drill. But Pinterest’s focus on being mobile-friendly has led them to develop Guided Search, a row of semantically related keyword refinements in a horizontal bar across the top of their search results page. To see the results of Pinterest’s Guided Search:

1- Go to pinterest.com and type in a seed keyword (example “cowboy boots”).

2- You’ll get guided search results like in the screenshot below that are top “modifiers” or semantically related keywords:

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  1. Place your cursor at the beginning of the list, click and drag to the bottom right of your screen to highlight the entire list (even though you won’t actually be able to see the rest of the list, trust me, it’s there).
  2. Hit [CTRL-C] to copy the entire list.
  3. Open Word. Paste as Text. You’ll get something like you see in the screenshot below:

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  1. Hit [CTRL-H] to find and replace.
  2. Find the string Search for ‘ and replace with ^p (that’s a carriage return in Word-ese).

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  1. Hit [CTRL-H] to find and replace the single quote  with ^t^t (that’s two tabs in Word-ese). You’ll then have a tab-delimited list like you see in the screenshot below.

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9- You can then hit [CTRL-A] to highlight all and either copy and paste into Excel or use Word’s Insert/Table/Convert Text to a Table function to turn the info into a table.

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Column 1 is the semantically related phrase. Column 2 gives us a little white space, and Column 3 is the keyword itself.

10- You can now use this list to populate topics in your content calendar, to help determine new facets/filters in your e-commerce catalog or to show management the products consumers want that you have.

“Aha!” you might say. “Those keywords look just like what Keyword Planner gives me.” But the fine difference between the two systems makes all the difference in the world. Yes, Pinterest Guided Search does serve up variants based on gender, color and brand (just like Keyword Planner), but the addition of style and situation — the semantics — is what is special.

Phrases like “cowboy boots wedding,” “cowboy boots with shorts,” “how to wear cowboy boots,” and even “cowboy boots photography” give us a glimpse not just of how people search for the product, but how it fits into wearers’ lives.

Remember, good SEO is about users first, search engines second — and this nuance of Pinterest-based keyword research highlights product use cases, not just keyword modifiers.

Pinterest Option 3: Promoted Pin Suggestions

The final way to use Pinterest for keyword research is to leverage their Promoted Pin suggestions. To do this, the only catch is you have to have a Pinterest for Business account.

1- Login to the Pinterest for Business account.

2- Click the account holder’s name at the top right.

3- Click the “cog” image, and you’ll see Promoted Pins in the drop-down.

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4. A new window will open. Click the red “Promote” button at the top right.

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5. You’ll be prompted to enter a campaign name and budget. Enter something like “Test” and $10.00.

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6. Click the red “Pick a Pin” button.

7. Find one of the client’s pins that represents the seed keyword and click to “Promote” it. I chose a hunting boot.

8. You’ll be prompted to enter terms related to your pin. I’ve entered “hunting boots.” The terms returned are the related topics and/or categories (semantically related keywords and concepts) we’re interested in.

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9. Click “Add all results and related terms” to see the results and related terms in one area. Drag to highlight them all, copy and paste somewhere you can work with them. (Hint: If you copy and paste this list to Notepad, they’ll come out as a nice list.)

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As you can see, this list does not delve into keyword variants as much as it explores the concepts, ideas and interests Pinterest users associate with hunting boots. There are a few odd ones (like “medium hair cuts for women” and “wonder woman”), but even if those aren’t useful parts of a strictly SEO campaign, they could be useful test elements in your team’s wider content marketing efforts. (“Wonder woman” reminds me of the time our social media team discovered the affinity a plus size fashion client’s Facebook following had for “I Love Lucy”).

For retail sites in particular, your site’s ability to gain organic traffic depends not only on ranking for long-tail variants of your product line, but also on the semantic quality of product, category and blog copy. As the difference between a good and a great organic ranking increasingly relies on these semantic connections, the shortcomings of Google’s AdWords Keyword Planner are becoming more evident.

While I am not advocating the abandonment of the Keyword Planner, it is important that SEO pros and site owners consider keyword options outside of it. If that means we must start defining SEO in terms of its content marketing prowess and connection to social media inputs, so be it.

http://searchengineland.com/using-pinterest-keyword-research-235557

Categorized in Online Research

Jordan Koene is a SEJ Summit veteran, having spoke at a few of our search marketing conferences last year. This year, we’re happy to have him at SEJ Summit Chicago, speaking on how to improve search visibility.

Jordan’s insights below are always enlightening and cover everything from moving past a plateau to how e-commerce SEO is different from other channels.

Your SEJ Summit presentation is titled Surviving the Search Plateau: 3 Tactics to Bring Your Website’s SEO Visibility to New Heights. How do you determine if you are in an SEO plateau? What signs would you look for?

You’ve plateaued if you reach a period where, despite your efforts, you’ve been unable to affect positive change on your site – usually quarterly for most businesses. It usually presents itself either in slow downs in site traffic or declines in conversion rates. Traffic is the more obvious metric, since most SEO teams are measured by it, but there are times you may see an increase in clicks that don’t reflect in your total conversions. That bears investigating.

One of the examples you give for breaking free from the plateau is by igniting your content. Does that mean blending content marketing into your SEO strategy?

That can be a piece of it, though that can take a lot of time and money. From a search perspective, the low-hanging fruit is to simply refresh the content you already have with new material, or by making minor changes. Like layering a cake, you can build on top of your old content with structured data or info to create something interesting and new. Minor changes can bring big rewards.

I did a little bit of stalking and saw you are interested in wearable technology. What is your favorite wearable piece of tech—either already on the market or coming soon?

Personally, I’m really interested in the Internet of Things – items within the home like Nest or Ring that are beginning to talk to each other and to you. Similar to how 3-4 years ago, when wearables for fitness like Fitbit started to provide us with data around our health and well-being to aid self improvement, we’re now starting to see that same thought process transition into devices for the home, helping make utilitarian improvements to the way we live., These kinds of futuristic gadgets can solve a lot of problems for our world like reducing consumption of fossil fuels and other things that have a direct impact on our environment.

You have a background in e-commerce, having worked for eBay in the past. How does SEO differ for big e-commerce brands versus, say, a service based brand.

E-commerce has this mentality of short-term gains: everything is about making short-term progress in a competitive ecosystem, especially here in the US. For that reason, a good deal of the decision making is relatively short-sighted, and you might not see them invest in long-term plays like you would for a news or media outlet. Service-based companies are more focused on having an online to offline presence since they essentially evolved from the big directory business.

A lot of service companies are moving into a transactional service model to marry in e-commerce behaviors, like Yelp, which now offers a bidding service for consumers looking to nail down a service for a particular price. In that way, they’re becoming more similar as more companies adopt that model.

Bonus Question: What was the last book you read?

I’m currently starting Shoe Dog by Phil Knight. I’ve been interested in selling in an era where e-commerce didn’t exist, and was looking for parallels into how shopping is changing today. People like Phil Knight are pioneers who broke down lots of barriers in the market to rise to success, but it’s interesting to dig into how much of his success was based on societal changes at the time – and how societal changes today might reflect market changes to come. 

Categorized in Online Research

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