The eCommerce Catch-Up – Episode 4

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Published on 07/08/19 by James Vjestica

Are you interested to find out what is happening in the retail industry in terms of eCommerce and the overall customer experience? In August’s edition of our monthly retail news round-up, Heather Tomlinson (Business Development Executive) and Rob Gould (Digital Marketing Executive) discuss this month’s outstanding topics including:

  • Voice commerce
  • Changing use of mobile devices
  • SEO news for July
  • And more!

Check out what they had to say by either clicking on the video or reading the full transcript below!

Why not get involved in the conversation? Subscribe to our Youtube channel to keep up to date with all of our videos and let us know which eCommerce topics you would like us to discuss in the future!


Heather: Hello and welcome to the fourth episode of Remarkable Commerce’s ‘eCommerce Catch Up’ with Rob, our Marketing Executive –

Rob: – And Heather, the Business Development Executive

Heather: Yeah, so this month we have some great topics to be chatting about, which are?

Rob: They are the, they are – I’ve forgot –

Heather: – [Laughs]

Rob: They are the voice commerce, they are the changing use of mobile devices and they are what happened in SEO in July

Heather: Great. What’s going on in SEO?

Rob: Nothing. Nothing happened in a major way anyway, there’s no major updates from Google, so that’s all good, nothing to worry about there. There is one unconfirmed update, so keep your eye on your analytics and make sure that you’re doing ok. We’ll find out what that is next month probably, but erm, nothing too major, but there are some little things, always some little things that they’re testing out. So, we’re going to look at those starting with this one, which is the Google’s local knowledge graph, it’s getting a ‘get a quote’ button which is awesome –

Heather: Cool –

Rob: – Yeah, it is. This is a big blue button on the desktop, not quite as big, but full screen width on mobile, but it’s white, it doesn’t stand out as much, says ‘get a quote’ and if you can edit that text or not, it’s there –

Heather: – No, that is good. It’s making it easier for the customer isn’t it? Just to –

Rob: – Yeah and this is going to link through with Google’s messaging system, so it’s going to take you straight through from Google to send them a message which a cynical person, which I’m not, would say this is Google’s, another way of Google keeping you within Google and not letting you click through to the user’s site, but you know, I wouldn’t say that –

Heather: – [Laughs]

Rob: So next up we have Google’s testing shareable snippets. So, these are the ability for you to share your search results and so there’s going to be these little kebab, these 3 dot, erm, buttons, next to search results. You can click on that, it’s going to give you three options: one is to view the cash page which has always been there, one to open the page in a new tab and another to share the result with somebody which they did before with Google+, but then Google+ went down the toilet, so they’re trying it again obviously in a different way –

Heather: – [Laughs] Yeah –

Rob: – So maybe this one will work –

Heather: – Yeah, maybe, we’ll see –

Rob: – Maybe, we’ll see, erm, so, just need to be careful with that one because the images I’ve seen they have cut a couple of letters off the end of the title tag –

Heather: – Ah, fading them out?

Rob: Yes, yes. So, you need to be careful with that and make sure that your words look ok at the end. Erm, Google news layout is going to look better, at the moment it looks a mess, there’s just random images, not random images, but just images there, unaligned text just coming down the side of an image and curving in and it looks ugly and horrible – it’s what we’re used to but it just doesn’t look very nice. But now each individual result has its own image with its own bit of meta description and title and the next one down, and the next one down, and the next one down, and it all looks really nice and formatted so it’s easier to see –

Heather: – Yeah –

Rob: – Which is good –

Heather: – Yeah, wow

Rob: Yeah. So, you need to look in your images for that as well because the images are going to be super important because the images really pop on the pages –

Heather: – Yeah, yeah, it’s the visual, it’s what you see first isn’t it –

Rob: – Yeah, yeah –      

Heather: – So, very important. Anything else Rob?

Rob: Yep, last one er, bit boring, but it’s there. It is boring. Google are no indexing or not allowing you to no index robots.txt. I don’t know anyone who has done that, but if you do that then you should have had an email from Google already telling you to stop doing it because from September 1st they’re going to ignore it, so you need to go back –

Heather: – It’s pointless –

Rob: – Yeah, you need to go back to putting your no index back in your header tag, take it out robots.txt, That’s it

Heather: aw, there was some little gems there –

Rob: – yeah, yeah –

Heather: – A little bit going on –

Rob: – Not as exciting as the usual one, but you know, it was. Stuff happening –

Heather: – Yeah, stuff happening. So, let’s talk about voice commerce then. Obviously, it’s not a new concept, it’s been around for years and years, however, at the moment, it is sort of erm –

Rob: – Exploding –

Heather: – Exploding, isn’t it? Because obviously we’ve got erm, Amazon Echo and Google Home, erm, they’re just sort of –

Rob: – Yeah, useful. It’s useful. It’s a little big lazy but it is useful if you need your bits and bobs or you need information. What do you actually use them for?

Heather: I was thinking about this yesterday and I would use the voice commerce for maybe, erm, searching for what I’m wanting to look for, not necessarily to purchase directly from the voice commerce. Definitely not for clothes anyway, maybe if I’m buying like domestic for the house, like, order me some washing powder please. That kind of thing –

Rob: – Yeah –

Heather: – But I’m not going to like, erm, I want to wear a black dress today, well, not today –

Rob: – [Laughs] –

Heather: – They wouldn’t deliver it that quick, would they?

Rob: Yeh –

Heather: – This weekend, you know, you need to, you need visual, don’t you?

Rob: Yes, you do

Heather: Erm, what about you?

Rob: Nothing, I don’t do any transactional queries –

Heather: – Yeah –

Rob: – At all. I do timers for when I’m cooking and I ask Alexa to play Avril Lavigne and that is –

Heather: – Course you do –

Rob: – and that is it [laughs]

Heather: He loves Avril Lavigne

Rob: [Laughs] Yeah, and that is pretty much all I use it for. I don’t use it for anything else. I’ve seen that 35% of queries are transactional –

Heather: – Yeah –

Rob: – And 20% are from the shower, so you can get that –

Heather: – Yeah –

Rob: – Venn diagram of those two put together and –

Heather: – Yeah, but it’s a growing erm, it’s a growing –

Rob: – It is growing. It’s, it is easy, easy to get your re-orders done –

Heather: – Yeah, it’s quite a niche erm, sort of, area isn’t it, that –

Rob: – Yeah –

Heather: – I think, you know, retailers are having to sort of look at doing just to keep up with everybody else who’s doing it. You need to have the option there whether it’s sort of used or not, sort of thing, just to keep up

Rob: Yeah

Heather: So, what about erm, changing devices and what people are using to erm, buy from, search for etc, because there’s been a big shift in recent years, hasn’t there?

Rob: Hm, yeah, tricky one. Very tricky –

Heather: – It’s basically, in my opinion, erm, it’s gone from desktop to mainly using our iPhones –

Rob: – Yeah –

Heather: – Or, you know, our phones to, I do anyway, I do all my shopping on my phone –

Rob: – Yeah –

Heather: – Rather than desktop

Rob: Ok

Heather: What about you?

Rob: I do it all on desktop –

Heather: – Do you? –

Rob: I search on mobile, I very rarely look, I very rarely buy on mobile, unless it’s Paypal –

Heather: – How come?

Rob: I don’t know, I just do. I’m never, I’m never really more than three feet away from a desktop, so, do you know what I mean? [laughs] –

Heather: – [Laughs] –

Rob: – It’s just easier I think, erm, I prefer to be a bit more precise. I think when I have bought on mobile I’ve rushed before sometimes –

Heather: – Yeah –

Rob: – Maybe made bad choices or not read the small print and stuff –

Heather: – Yeah, it’s easier to buy on a whim, erm, with a mobile, isn’t it –

Rob: – It is, yeah –

Heather: If you’re just bored –

Rob: – Yeah –

Heather: And you’re like, I’m just going to press and purchase this top

Rob: Yeah, I mean it’s difficult as well with depending on which device you’re using because if you’re using Siri on an iPhone you can get pictures, if you’re using Alexa, unless you’re using one of the new ones, you’re not going to get any pictures. I was reading about optimising for pictureless shopping –

Heather: – Pictureless shopping? –

Rob: – Yeah, so you have to use short, punchy, precise phrases where a picture would be. You need like, erm, the whole description for an image if you’re doing something with SEO, you need to make sure you describe what that image is but in the shortest way possible, so people know what the product is

Heather: So, you can’t actually see the product?               

Rob: – Not, no if you’re shopping through Alexa because there’s no screen. Not all the time, the newer ones with the screens, perfect, that’s fine, you can see what that is but if you haven’t got a screen on your device or they haven’t done a very good job of their ecommerce store, then, you’re not going to see what it is –

Heather: – No, which it goes back to I suppose, we said before, you wouldn’t shop for clothes with voice commerce –

Rob: – No –

Heather: – At the moment –

Rob: – Unless you knew exactly what you wanted, that would be the only way –

Heather: – Yeah –

Rob: – If you, if you, like, for example, you were talking about running shoes –

Heather: – Yeah –

Rob: – You know the brand that you like –

Heather: – Yeah –

Rob: – So you could theoretically order the brand, the colour and the size that you wanted, but that is such a specific –

Heather: – Yeah –

Rob: – one off [laughs] –

Heather: – I’d still need to check that it’s the right one –

Rob: – Yeah –

Heather: – It could be multiple ones that have that same colour in that same brand. Right, I think that’s all for this month, so thank you so much for listening to the fourth episode of Remarkable Commerce’s ‘eCommerce Catch Up’ with Rob and me and we hope you found it interesting –

Rob: – Yeah and if you want to take part in the discussion be sure to comment below, remember to like, share and subscribe, hit the little bell to get notified when the next episode’s going live and yeah, thanks for watching

Heather: Thanks for watching and we’ll see you next month

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