Posts Tagged ‘internet’

postheadericon Is Google About to Top the Browser Charts

As many of us are aware, internet browsing became popular through the use of a trusted and well known piece of software called Internet Explorer.  For many years, IE dominated the internet browsing world, with only a little bit of competition from Netscape on Windows and Safari on Mac, but that time came to an end.  According to statistics from www.w3schools.com, internet explorer has been on a steady decline in market share since March of 2003, where it peaked at 80% of the market share.  9 years later their market share has dwindled down to only 19.5%.

In January of 2009, Mozilla Firefox overtook Internet Explorer as the most popular browser.  However, by July of that year, it too started to decline in market share as a new competitor, Google Chrome, began its accent to the top.  By April of 2010, Google surpassed IE, taking over the number 2 spot behind Firefox, and has been continuously gaining ground since.

As of last month, Google has edged itself to within .3% of Firefox with 36.3% vs. Firefox’s 36.6%.  IE is down to 19.5%, like mentioned above, with Safari and Opera rounding out the remainder with 4.5% and 2.3% respectively.  If the trend continues, by next month, we may be hailing Google Chrome as the champion in this browser competition, at least for the time being.  As Internet Explorer and Firefox have demonstrated, nothing lasts forever.

How does this affect web developers and the population in general?

As many website designers and developers would attest to, Internet Explorer has been a thorn in our side for the last few years.  As Firefox and Chrome, along with Safari and Opera, embraced the most advanced technologies available, IE has been steadily falling behind, causing developers to need to almost develop an entire side twice.  Once for Internet Explorer and once for the rest of the world.  In addition, there are so many features that are lacking in older versions of Internet Explorer, that anyone running IE8 would never be able to see the websites they visit living up the glory that they have.

The good news is that IE9 at least brought potential fixes to some of these features, even if developers need to use different coding in some cases to achieve the same results.

The bad news is that IE9 won’t work on machines running Windows XP, which according to the same source above, is still used by over 31% of internet users.

More good news: Microsoft recently announced that IE10 will be debuting shortly, and is currently in developer testing stages.  You can download a version of it if you want, but we wouldn’t recommend it unless you are an experienced web developer.

More bad news: Microsoft has decided that IE10 will not be available on anything before Windows 7, which to be fair has garnered about 47% of the market at this point.  Still, this leaves anyone running Windows XP with only one way of viewing the latest technologies: drop Internet Explorer and go for one of the top dogs, either Firefox or Chrome.

Personally, as a Chrome user,  I am all for it taking the #1 spot.  Nothing against Firefox, mind you.  It is a good and stable browser, but with Google behind it, I see lots of potential for Chrome, including functionality between it, Google’s Android mobile phone operating system, and Google Chrome OS, Google’s attempt at taking cloud computing to a ridiculously new level.

If you are a Chrome user too, great!

If you are a Firefox user, your days as #1 may be up, but I wish you the best of luck.

If you are a Safari or Opera user, I don’t understand why you chose what you did, but I can appreciate your choice.

If you are using IE9, it could be worse, I suppose.

If you are still using IE8 or earlier, you may want to consider upgrading if possible or better yet switching to a different browser.  Just try it out.  It doesn’t take long to adjust and you can be sure you are seeing the website in the way website developers want you to.

postheadericon BBB Rankings

We’ve all seen the logo of the Better Business Bureau on some of our favorite sites.  They are the ones who will rate a compnay based on how well their service is and how they treat their customers.  Suffice it to say that some of the best companies we know are ranked highly by the BBB, and it shows on their website.

Some of ActiveNation’s clients, including Virginia Green Lawn Care and Party Perfect, have been ranked with an A+ ranking and are therefore entitled and encouraged to place the self-updating logo from the BBB on their website.  This logo serves a multi-faceted purpose in terms of website marketing, and it is important to look at the various values of using it.

From a purely customer-friendly point of view, the BBB is a well known and respected organization and their ranking system is trusted by many.  Just seeing that a business has an A+ ranking is a good enough reason for many potential clients to give that company a call.

However, it also serves an SEO purpose, in that by listing your website with the BBB creates an inward link to your website while the logo on your webpage will actually link to your company’s profile on the BBB’s own website.  That means that when someone goes through the BBB, they find you.  When they go through a search engine, they find you.  When they click the BBB link on your webpage, they find you again.

There are a variety of organizations that are similar to the BBB, but this goes to show the benefits of being a member of any one of them.

postheadericon How You Doin’ Twitter?

While Facebook is the reigning King of social media, it may need to make some room for another social network that’s gaining some momentum in the interactive race.  It’s no secret that Twitter has become an online phenomenon, I mean who doesn’t wake up first thing in the morning and check their Twitter time-line to see what they missed during their hours of slumber? It’s almost calming to know that much activity can still go on even when you’re not a part of it at that moment. It’s like the social network that never sleeps. But I digress…

Recently the Pew Research Center and the eMarketer conducted surveys and studies regarding Twitter’s current status in the digital world and have even made predictions regarding Twitter’s future. So how do you think the site did? I’ve included some of their statistics that may exhibit some astounding and surprising information about where the site currently is and where it could be in just a matter of a year.  Are we ready to turn over the crown to Twitter eventually?

One thing that can definitely be said is that Twitter is on a roll when it comes to overall earned revenue and even predicted increases in the network’s 2011 ad revenue. Just last year Twitter generated $45 million and is expected to make a huge jump by over $100 million this year.

The Pew Research Center has analyzed the typical Twitter user and their behavior when using the social site. Surprisingly despite the success Twitter has seen and will continue to see in ad spending, the percentages for the demographics that utilize the service were slimmer than I had imagined. In fact it seems that even though there are millions of people that sign up for the online social service only 8% of online adults said they do use Twitter, with 2% doing so on a typical day. The survey also exemplified that 74% of American adults are Internet users, which means that the Twitter cohort amounts to 6% of the entire adult population.

I would’ve thought those numbers would be bigger. But in due time I can only imagine how much these figures will increase within the next couple of years, especially considering the predictions being made regarding Twitter’s successful ad revenues and increasingly amount of accounts being opened each year. In fact at least 100 million accounts were opened just in the year 2010. Can you imagine by 2014 or 2015?

All we can say is stay tuned and keep a close observation on the evolution of social media. I have a feeling that these social networks will not only change the face of the internet and how we use it, but may even change the world. Imagine that.

postheadericon Inspire Your Own Creativity

Don’t you hate it when you encounter spontaneous inspiration by something or someone but you forget the idea later or it’s not as innovative as it was initially? In the world of internet marketing it’s pretty easy to run into writer’s block or develop a brain freeze when trying to focus. Whether you’re trying to conjure up creative marketing campaign strategies or trying to clear your mind so you can tackle your reporting routine, there are plenty of ways to ignite that creative spark and effective thought process. Well I’ve outlined 10 essential and effective tips that have helped inspire my own creativity and have also helped me keep track of  my creative efforts.

1.       Record your ideas. It’s always beneficial to have a pen and paper on hand for those light bulb moments. Or even better, browse your mobile device for notepad like apps to record and organize your thoughts.

2.       If you dream it, you can conceive it. Daydream, doodle, ask questions, etc. All of these techniques will get your creative thought process going and will eventually manifest into reality.

3.       Do not focus on the competition…excessively. Pay attention to what your competitors are doing just enough so that you stay in the loop on what is and isn’t effective. But don’t obsess over their approach otherwise you can’t stick to your own identity.

4.       Brainstorm ideas with people you trust with your ideas and who know you well enough to give you genuine input.

5.       Eat Healthy. Spinach, milk, salmon, whole grain pasta, tofu and sunflower seeds are all proven to make you feel happier and more creative.

6.       Sleep on it. Sleep is a great aid in the thought process. Taking a power nap can refuel your brain and generate more room for your creative objectives.

7.       Listen to music. I’ve found that classical and jazz music soothes my brain and sparks creative energy.

8.       Exercise. This is a great way to clear your mind so that ideas will have room to pour in and out…of course once you get your mind off the pain in your body.

9.       Walk away. When you run into writer’s block or hit a creative wall, sometimes you should just stop, walk away, and then come back to what you’re doing. Sometimes when you’re focusing so much for such a long period of time, your brain can hit a roadblock. Give it a break and it will come back to you.

10.   Love what you do.  Have a passion for what you do and trust yourself. Confidence is a significant trait to have when you’re really trying to put things in full gear.

postheadericon Every Generation Has Its Day

A recent Pew Research study was done in an attempt to differentiate various generations and their unique roles as web users. Some of the information they retrieved was pretty interesting. I don’t know about you and your family; but I know my siblings, parents, and grandparents utilize the internet for many different reasons. Not to mention the older generations in my family aren’t naturally as tech savvy nor do they really spend as much time online as say myself or my younger siblings who are just now hitting the “tween” ages. This may be the same within your family tree, or it may not be. Let’s take a peak and see what the Pew Research Center found to be an average depiction of what our generations are doing online.

First and foremost, how about we break down exactly what the different generations mean, shall we?

Generations
Generation name Birth years, Ages in 2010 % of total adult population % of internet-using population
Millennials Born 1977-1992, Ages 18-33 30% 35%
Gen X Born 1965-1976, Ages 34-45 19 21
Younger Boomers Born 1955-1964, Ages 46-55 20 20
Older Boomers Born 1946-1954, Ages 56-64 14 13
Silent Generation Born 1937-1945, Ages 65-73 7 5
G.I. Generation Born -1936, Age 74+ 9 3
Source: Pew Research, December 2010

So now that we know who’s who, let’s dissect what we and they are doing with their time online. Do any of the generations have anything in common as web users?

Online Activities (% of Generation Group)
% Engaging
Activity Teens Millennials Gen X Younger Boomers Older Boomers Silent Gen. G.I. Gen. All adultsAge 18+
Go online 93% 95% 86% 81% 76% 58% 30% 79%
Teens and/or Millennials are more likely to engage in the following activities compared with older users
Watch a video 57 80 66 62 55 44 20 66
Use social network sites 73 83 62 50 43 34 16 61
Send IMs 67 66 52 35 30 29 4 47
Play online games 78 50 38 26 28 25 18 35
Read blogs 49 43 34 27 25 23 15 32
Visit a virtual world 8 4 4 4 3 3 1 4
Activities where Gen X users or older generations dominate
Visit a government website * 61 75 73 69 56 41 67
Get financial info * 33 38 41 41 44 30 38
For some activities, the youngest and oldest cohorts may differ, but there is less variation overall
Send or read e-mail 73 96 94 91 93 90 88 94
Use a search engine * 92 87 86 87 82 72 87
Look for health info 31 85 84 84 85 76 59 83
Get news 62 76 79 76 76 67 54 75
Buy a product 48 68 66 64 69 59 57 66
Make travel reservations * 64 67 70 67 61 53 66
Bank online * 62 62 58 56 44 35 58
Use online classifieds * 64 58 49 42 30 17 53
Listen to music online * 65 58 48 38 25 12 51
Look for religious info * 31 35 34 33 26 28 32
Rate a product, service or person * 32 32 29 40 38 16 32
Participate in an auction * 28 31 25 25 13 7 26
Make a charitable donation * 21 24 24 23 20 13 22
Download podcasts * 26 20 20 16 12 10 21
Work on own blog 14 18 16 11 11 8 5 14
Source: Pew Research, December 2010
So now that we’ve analyzed these statistics, what do we make of them? Well it’s definitely clear that the younger generations have the most presence online when it comes to: use of social networking sites, instant messaging, use of online classifieds, playing online games, listening to music, reading blogs, and participating in virtual worlds. No surprise there though right?

Take a look at the entire report to get more insight on the generations of internet users and maybe we can catch a glimpse of the future from their findings.

postheadericon Interesting Online Marketing Trend Tidbits

I stumbled across some pretty intriguing information regarding anything and everything an online marketer would want to identify their typical consumer’s profile  and when targeting their ideal audience. Check out some of the interesting tidbits I collected while navigating through different online infographics. Hopefully this will help some of you on your journey to successful internet marketing and even more specifically social media marketing!

Enjoy!

How Global Users Spend Their Time Online

  • Percentage of User’s Time Spent Online: 22% Social Media; 42% Viewing Content; 36% e-mail, e-commerce and other.
  • The average American spends up to 60 hours a month online which equates to 30 days a year.

via Visual Economics

via Marketing Pilgrim

Also:

  • 61% of adult internet users view videos online and 61% view online videos on a video sharing site.
  • The most common online video viewing and sharing age group is 18-29 at 78%, 30-49 age groups at 66% and 45% of 50+ ages watch videos online.
  • Men appear to watch more online videos than women. In fact 65% of men watch online videos while only 57% of women do.
  • The most popular age demographic in the blogosphere is the 35-44 age group with 28% and following closely behind at 25% are bloggers aged 25-34.
  • When it comes to what age group utilizes the internet the most, ages  18-29 spend more time online at 93%!

What do you think about some of these statistics?

postheadericon Teens and Their Parents Determine Buying Trends

Targeting your audience can be challenging depending on your ideal consumer profile, but when it comes to determining teens and tween customers and their buying habits, naturally it’s not as complex as you would think. Teen buyers usually are pretty solid when it comes to knowing what products they want. Considering teens and tweens are pretty tech savvy, the internet naturally would be a great resource for them to make their purchases. But what exactly influences a teen to purchase a product or persuade their parents to make the purchase for them?

Usually teenagers are pretty set on what they want so they may not need to research so much into their favorite product since they’re pretty keen on the newest and hottest trends, especially with electronics. But what resources influence teens to attain information about their favorite products and to make their purchases? According to an eMarketer report, “two in five teens said online reviews influenced their computer product preferences, and 37% cited product websites”. So it seems as though teens pay attention to their web sources like online customer reviews, product websites, and online ads. In fact according to the “TeenFluence Survey” conducted by Harris Interactive on behalf of ConsumerSearch.com, ads were the second most common element that helped users to make their decision about a product or service.

A study by Mintel also found that the influence of online content becomes more important as kids enter their teenage years, you can also call this demographic the “tween” generation. “At the upper end of the age range, kids 9-11 are more likely to turn to more diverse resources for information, including online ads and social networking sites, while the younger kids, aged 6-8, have a stronger reliance on parents”. Not to mention word of mouth is definitely popular among this age group as kids like to “show and tell” their favorite products they possess or want to purchase. Teens usually know more about popular products and electronics than their parents do so usually the teen would influence the parent to make the purchase and the parent then researches the item through the web through customer reviews, website content, word of mouth and online advertisements also. And since tweens and teens may not have the income to make their purchases, it’s ultimately up to the parents to make the purchase.

It’s safe to say that the internet plays a major role when it comes to purchasing products, not just with adult users but more so with the newest generation of tech savvy teens and tweens. Would you agree with the report and their results?

postheadericon Time Names Mark Zuckerberg “Person of the Year”

Mark Zuckerberg is no doubt the most powerful person in social media and the most interesting person of 2010, or at least that’s what Time magazine thinks. This year they bestowed 26 year old former Harvard student and Facebook founder Mark Zuckerberg with the honor of being named Person of the Year. With the release of the highly successful movie “The Social Network”, which is based on Zuckerberg and his controversial journey to create the social site, and after Facebook reached its 500 million members mark this past summer, I agree with Time magazine.

I think it’s safe to say that things haven’t been the same since Zuckerberg introduced us all to Facebook, and then naturally came the beginning of a beautiful digital and social revolution. With the overwhelmingly positive and socially addictive outcome of Facebook, you still can’t help but to ask, “Where would the internet world be if we didn’t’ have Facebook, or any social media platforms for that matter”?

Six years ago Mark Zuckerberg created Facebook, an addictive and socially influential social networking site from his college dorm room. Of course then it was titled “The Facebook”. Unless you’ve been living under a rock for the past 6 or 7 years, you have seen and heard about Facebook when you turn on the TV, listen to the radio, open a newspaper and of course search the web. And even those of you out there that have yet to obtain an account with the most popular social media site [Must I remind you about its 500 plus million members?] to date, it’s a pretty good chance you still know all about the site and its influence on our generation.

While some of us may have their own reasons to agree or disagree with Time’s choice to make Mark Zuckerberg “Person of the Year”, the magazine shares with its readers their exact reason and motivation for honoring him with the title:

“For connecting more than half a billion people and mapping the social relations among them (something that has never been done before); for creating a new system of exchanging information that has become both indispensable and sometimes a little scary; and finally, for changing how we all live our lives in ways that are innovative and even optimistic, Mark Elliot Zuckerberg is TIME’s 2010 Person of the Year.”

With such a popular site of close to 600 million “friends” who share their life experiences and most cherished moments like births, deaths, photos, breakups and even make ups, it’s no doubt that Facebook has transitioned from a simple social site built for us to connect with others to becoming a lifestyle for so many. It is the second most visited site worldwide [Behind Google] and users spend over 700 billion minutes per month visiting the site! See what I mean by it being “addictive”?

And in case any of you were wondering just how successful Zuckerberg has become after the launch of his monster of a creation, we’ll put it to you in dollar terms, his personal fortune has soared to 6.9 billion this year and the company itself is worth $23 billion! Not too bad Mr. Zuckerberg, not too bad at all.

Do you agree with Time magazine’s decision?