Monthly Archives: August 2017

Marketing with a Heart of Data

At top companies, data drives strategies and daily decisions. Our new research with Econsultancy shows that 60% of leading marketers routinely take action based on analytics, and are also 48% more likely than mainstream marketers to say their strategy is strongly data-driven.1

So, how can you help your organization feel data in its pulse? Move beyond instinct and intuition and put data at the heart of your marketing strategy to drive smarter decisions and produce better results. 

Get over your gut — and take data to heart

As a confident decision-maker, it’s natural to trust your gut. But unless your instincts are right every time, why not consult another source? According to our report, nearly 60% of leading marketers agree that decisions made with data have better outcomes than those made with gut instinct or experience, compared to just 36% of mainstream marketers.2

Data tells us things we may not want to hear. For example, maybe you thought last quarter’s campaign strategy would work again, but the data tells a different story. That’s why it’s important to take data to heart — in other words, to accept and trust what your analytics tell you. Marketing with a heart of data also means being comfortable enough with change to act on those insights. Leading marketers are 44% more likely than mainstream ones to say their company is “quite open to change.”3 Is yours?

Let data flow freely

It’s not enough for you to trust your data. For your data-driven marketing strategy to succeed, everyone’s heart has to be in it. Companies that invest in data and analytics at every level empower their marketing organizations to make more informed choices and provide better customer experiences.

But this alignment is impossible if only analysts have access to data. The solution? Help get everyone comfortable with using data in their decision-making. When data flows freely and everyone understands how to use it, analytics can pump insight and value into every decision, strategy, and team.

It’s no wonder 93% of survey respondents agree that collaboration across marketing and analytics teams is essential to driving results.4 In organizations where data is valued and accessible, anyone — and everyone — can uncover insights and drive the business forward.

Don’t forget your head

Even when your marketing organization has a healthy core, you’ll need the support of the C-suite to succeed and lead. After all, what good is a heart of data without a head of marketing?

To secure executive buy-in, bring data insights to your meetings, calls, and conversations — use data to back up everything from big-idea budgets to email campaign optimizations. When executives receive recommendations based on analytics, they start to expect it.

Two-thirds of survey respondents at leading companies say that being a more data-driven organization is a top goal for their CEO, compared to just half of respondents at mainstream organizations.5 While your C-suite can set the right beat to propel innovation and collaboration, you can help keep the systems functioning to ensure data remains at the heart of your strategy.

Download the full Econsultancy research report here to learn how to build a truly data-driven culture.


1-5 Econsultancy/Google, “Customer Experience is Written in Data”, May 2017, U.S. (n=677 marketing and measurement executives at companies with over $250M in revenues, primarily in North America; n=199 leading marketers who reported marketing significantly exceeded top business goal in 2016, n=478 mainstream marketers (remainder of the sample)

Posted by Casey Carey, Director of Platforms & Publisher Marketing, Google

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Introducing Our New International Webmaster Blogs!

Join us in welcoming the latest additions to the Webmasters community:

नमस्ते Webmasters in Hindi!

Добро Пожаловать Webmasters in Russian!

Hoşgeldiniz Webmasters in Turkish!

สวัสดีค่ะ Webmasters in Thai!

xin chào Webmasters in Vietnamese!

We will be sharing webmaster-related updates in our current and new blogs to make sure you have a place to follow the latest launches, updates and changes in Search in your languages! We will share links to relevant Help resources, educational content and events as they become available.

Just a reminder, here are some of the resources that we have available in multiple languages:

  • Google.com/webmasters – documentation, support channels, tools (including a link to Search Console) and learning materials.
  • Help Center – tips and tutorials on using Search Console, answers to frequently asked questions and step-by-step guides.
  • Help forum – ask your questions and get advice from the Webmaster community
  • YouTube Channel – recordings of Hangouts on Air in different languages are on our
  • G+ community – another place we announce and share our Hangouts On Air

Testing tools:

Some other valuable resources (English-only):

If you have webmaster-specific questions, check our event calendar for the next hangout session or live event! Alternatively, you can post your questions to one of the local help forum, where our talented Product Experts from the TC program will try to answer your questions. Our Experts are product enthusiasts who have earned the distinction of “Top Contributor,” or “Rising Star,” by sharing their knowledge on the Google Help Forums.

If you have suggestions, please let us know in the comments below. We look forward to working with you in your language!

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Three Ways to Get Data Out of Silos and Into Your Marketing Strategy

There are a lot of ways to organize information. And the bigger a company is, the more complicated it can be for employees to find the right data, let alone know how best to use or share that information to make more-informed decisions.

Chances are that some data is “hidden” in silos across your company. According to new research from Econsultancy in partnership with Google, 86% of senior executives agree: eliminating organizational silos is critical to expanding the use of data and analytics in decision-making.1

If teams don’t talk, or if your organization doesn’t have an integrated data strategy to harness marketing, customer, and advertising data, information and ideas won’t flow freely. Here are three ways to break down data silos and get your organization on the path to a more collaborative, data-driven culture.

1. Make data accessible — to everyone
If you have work to do to get your data house in order, you’re not alone: 61% of marketing decision-makers struggled to access or integrate data they needed last year.2

The first step to making data more accessible is to outline a data strategy that identifies data owners and key points of contact for each information source. Next, define how to integrate data and related technologies, and provide standards and processes related to data security and privacy. Include guidelines for sharing data internally.

Democratizing access to data and insights enables employees at all levels to check their gut — and that leads to better results. The same Econsultancy study found that marketing leaders are 1.6X as likely as their mainstream counterparts to strongly agree that open access to data leads to higher business performance.3


Watch our on-demand webinar featuring new research and best practices in marketing data and analytics strategy from Google and MIT Sloan School of Management. 


2. Champion the value of data-driven insights over gut feelings
Once data is made available to marketing managers and business decision-makers, make sure you champion a data-first mindset with your team. Using data effectively is a key differentiator for marketers who are ahead of the curve.

While a documented data and analytics strategy can provide a guide for all employees, support from the top helps set the tone. Nearly two-thirds of leading organizations say that their executives treat data-driven insights as more valuable than gut instinct.4

C-suite buy-in and other champions across the company help reinforce a data-driven culture by giving teams stuck in silos a nudge to collaborate and share analytic insights. Even better, this environment should give teams the incentive to align or share goals since data is core to campaign plans and marketing strategy.

3. Educate stakeholders on how to interpret the data
Having access to data is great, but if employees don’t know how to use it, the insights will remain isolated and unused. Consider this: 75% of marketers agree that lack of education and training on data and analytics is the biggest barrier to more business decisions being made based on data insights.5
If a team is empowered with the right learnings, it will proactively integrate data rather than push it aside. Set up brown bag sessions or internal trainings, or provide employees access to self-paced learning modules.

Finally, consider pairing the “data evangelists” and data storytellers within your organization with different team members to identify areas of focus based on relevant business goals and the biggest opportunities.

Download the Econsultancy report, “The customer experience is written in data,” to learn how successful brands put data at the center of their marketing strategies. 

1, 3, 4, 5Google/Econsultancy, “The Customer Experience Is Written in Data”, U.S., n=677 marketing and measurement executives at companies with over $250M in revenues, primarily in North America; n=199 leading marketers who reported marketing significantly exceeded top business goal in 2016; n=478 mainstream marketers (remainder of sample); May 2017. 2 Google Surveys, U.S., “2016–2017 Marketing Analytics Challenges and Goals,” Base: 203, marketing executives who have analytics or data-driven initiatives, Dec. 2016.
2 Google Surveys, U.S., “2016–2017 Marketing Analytics Challenges and Goals,” Base: 203, marketing executives who have analytics or data-driven initiatives, Dec. 2016.

Posted by Casey Carey, Director of Platforms & Publisher Marketing, Google

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Sigma Sport spins up 28% higher revenue with Google Optimize 360

If you’re a road cyclist or triathlete, chances are you know Sigma Sport. This global retailer sells bikes, clothing, energy bars, anti-chafe balm and everything else you need to power your way through your next big event — or just enjoy your next friendly ride in the country.

Recently Sigma Sport set out to address a vital need: to find more customers with high potential lifetime value. “Growth with high-value customers is key to our success,” says Nik Hill, the company’s Head of Digital. “We knew we needed to change our website experience to better engage these customers.”

To reach its goal, Sigma Sport turned to its agency, the digital conversion specialists Merkle | Periscopix. And together they turned to Google Optimize 360, part of the Google Analytics 360 Suite.

Using Optimize 360, Merkle | Periscopix created an experiment where they replaced Sigma Sport’s homepage carousel with brand-specific images of the site’s three top-performing brands: Castelli, Specialized, and Assos. Then they targeted the experiment to the audiences they had already built in Analytics.

This allowed Merkle | Periscopix to serve personalized experiences to fans of each brand. “We used the Analytics audience targeting feature in Optimize 360 to serve bespoke experiences to subsets of users,” says Shahina Meru, Associate Analytics Lead at Merkle | Periscopix. “We created three distinct Analytics audiences who had earlier bought or interacted with the top three brands, then used these as targeting rules in Optimize 360. Anyone who had looked at or bought a Specialized bike in the past, for instance, now saw Specialized products in their carousel.”

When Sigma Sport tested its new personalized home page, they saw right away that it was a hit with users. The experiment drove a 28% rise in revenue and a 32% increase in e-commerce conversion rate during the experiment. In fact, Sigma Sport saw uplift across the entire customer journey with a 90%+ probability to beat the baseline.

The bottom line: Personalization worked, both for bike-shopping customers and for Sigma Sport. Now Merkle | Periscopix is looking for more ways to enhance user experience with personalization from Analytics and Optimize 360.

Posted by Tiffany Siu, Product Marketing Manager, Google Optimize 360

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Now Optimize users can innovate in 37 new languages

It just got a whole lot easier to share Google Optimize with your teams around the world.

Optimize is now available in 37 new languages. Got a team in Thailand? No trouble. Cross-functional partner in Croatia? You’re covered. You’ll find the full list of supported languages here.

We’re always glad to bring our products to more of the world. But in this case, we’re extra excited about the way this will help teams collaborate and innovate not just across the office but across the globe.

In this data-rich world, everyone in your company needs to be part of building a culture of growth: a culture that embraces testing and analytics as the best way to learn what customers like most and to improve their experience day by day. Optimize opens the door for innovators at every level to explore how even tiny UI changes can improve results. 

Often those innovators take the form of a small “X-team” — maybe an analyst, a designer, and an engineer working together and totally focused on testing and optimization. With Optimize, a group like that can create changes in minutes instead of days, and they can more easily share that growth mindset and inspire others across their organization.

Now with 37 more languages in play, Optimize makes it possible for many more local teams to take on the role of optimizers, innovators, and culture-changers.

If you have team members who have selected one of the 37 new languages in their Google Account preferences, they’ll see Optimize in that language whenever they next sign in. (If you’d like to select a language preference just for Optimize, you can do so in your Optimize user settings at any time.) And if you’re happy with your current Optimize language, you’re fine: No action is needed.

To learn more about your global language options, visit our help center. Happy optimizing!

Posted by Rotimi Iziduh, Product Manager, Google Optimize

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The new Search Console: a sneak peek at two experimental features

Search Console was initially launched with just four reports more than a decade ago. Today, the product includes more than two dozen reports and tools covering AMP, structured data, and live testing tools, all designed to help improve your site’s performance on Google Search.
Now we have decided to embark on an extensive redesign to better serve you, our users. Our hope is that this redesign will provide you with:
  • More actionable insights – We will now group the identified issues by what we suspect is the common “root-cause” to help you find where you should fix your code. We organize these issues into tasks that have a state (similar to bug tracking systems) so you can easily see whether the issue is still open, whether Google has detected your fix, and track the progress of re-processing the affected pages.
  • Better support of your organizational workflow – As we talked to many organizations, we’ve learned that multiple people are typically involved in implementing, diagnosing, and fixing issues. This is why we are introducing sharing functionality that allows you to pick-up an action item and share it with other people in your group, like developers who will get references to the code in question.
  • Faster feedback loops between you and Google – We’ve built a mechanism to allow you to iterate quickly on your fixes, and not waste time waiting for Google to recrawl your site, only to tell you later that it’s not fixed yet. Rather, we’ll provide on-the-spot testing of fixes and are automatically speeding up crawling once we see things are ok. Similarly, the testing tools will include code snippets and a search preview – so you can quickly see where your issues are, confirm you’ve fixed them, and see how the pages will look on Search.

In the next few weeks, we’re releasing two exciting BETA features from the new Search Console to a small set of users — Index Coverage report and AMP fixing flow.

The new Index Coverage report shows the count of indexed pages, information about why some pages could not be indexed, along with example pages and tips on how to fix indexing issues. It also enables a simple sitemap submission flow, and the capability to filter all Index Coverage data to any of the submitted sitemaps.
Here’s a peek of our new Index Coverage report:

The new AMP fixing flow

The new AMP fixing experience starts with the AMP Issues report. This report shows the current AMP issues affecting your site, grouped by the underlying error. Drill down into an issue to get more details, including sample affected pages. After you fix the underlying issue, click a button to verify your fix, and have Google recrawl the pages affected by that issue. Google will notify you of the progress of the recrawl, and will update the report as your fixes are validated.

As we start to experiment with these new features, some users will be introduced to the new redesign through the coming weeks.
Posted by John Mueller and the Search Console Team

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Badges on Image Search help users find what they really want

When you want to bake cupcakes, but you don’t know what kind, Image Search can help you make a decision. Finding an image with a recipe can be challenging: you might end up on a page that has only pictures of these delicious things, or a cupcake fan si… Continue reading Continue reading

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