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Tim Peter

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June 4, 2017

7 Can’t Miss Hospitality Marketing Insights: Hospitality Marketing Link Digest

June 4, 2017 | By | No Comments

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7 can't miss hospitality marketing insights

Hey, everyone! Hope you’ve had a wonderful weekend. What do you say we close it out with these 7 can’t miss hospitality marketing insights. Enjoy:

  1. Tony Loeb writing at The Blog of Experience Hotel asks “Is Guest Experience the Future of Hotel Marketing?” The answer, as you might imagine, is “yes.” But you should read the whole post for Tony’s great insights. It makes a great companion piece to this recent episode of Thinks Out Loud, our e-commerce and digital strategy podcast that explained why “Content is King, Customer Experience is Queen.”
  2. Tnooz explores the “What, When and Why of Downloading an App for Travel.”
  3. Net Affinity looks at “Attribution Models: The Secret Ways Guests Discover Your Hotel.”
  4. Skift has a great episode of their Backstage Podcast that’s all about “Travel Search, Bargain Hunting and the Future of Booking” that’s worth a listen.
  5. Koddi says that “Google is Testing A New Mobile Experience for Hotel Ads” that you’ll definitely want to know about.
  6. With all the changes going on in digital for hospitality marketers, it’s reasonable to ask, when it comes to “Hospitality Digital Marketing and Distribution: Is it Time to Give Up?” I’d argue “no.” But be sure to read the whole post to see why.
  7. Finally, you won’t want to miss these “7 Sensational Posts for Hospitality Marketers” and this set of “5 Must-See Hospitality Marketing Hot Topics” from the Hospitality Marketing Link Digest series.

If you’re looking for even more hospitality marketing goodness, you might also want to take a moment to review the slides from Tim’s recent seminar, “Digital Marketing Directions 2016: The Key Trends Driving Your Hotel Marketing Next Year” here:

Finally, you will definitely want to check out some of our past coverage of the mobile, local, social web and how to make it work for your hotel, including:

Tim Peter

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November 25, 2015

Giving Thanks for Digital – Thinks Out Loud Episode 142

November 25, 2015 | By | No Comments

Giving Thanks for Digital

Giving Thanks for Digital – Headlines and Show Notes

You might also want to check out these slides I had the pleasure of presenting recently about how to lead mobile-focused digital transformation within large organizations (a topic we’ve been talking about a fair bit lately). Here are the slides for your reference:

Contact information for the podcast: podcast@timpeter.com

Technical details: Recorded using an Audio-Technica AT2035 studio condenser microphone through a Mackie Onyx Blackjack USB recording interface into Logic Express 9 for the Mac.

Running time: 13m 47s

You can subscribe to Thinks Out Loud in iTunes [iTunes link], subscribe via our dedicated podcast RSS feed (or better yet, given that Google has now killed Reader, sign up for our free newsletter). You can also download/listen to the podcast here on Thinks using the player below:

Tim Peter

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October 31, 2015

Google, Mobile, E-commerce. What More Could You Want? – E-commerce Link Digest

October 31, 2015 | By | No Comments

What more could you want than a look at Google, mobile, e-commerce, and moreReady for the weekend? Even more important, are you ready for this week’s link digest? Well, let’s see. This time we’ve got posts about Google, mobile, e-commerce, social, streaming video, bitcoin, net neutrality, plus a couple inspirational posts that help explain how to succeed in digital—and in business overall. I mean, really, what more could you want? Enjoy:

  1. Well, Google’s been busy lately. First, Search Engine Land says that Google warns webmasters again not to use sneaky, mobile-based redirects, proving once again that mobile is where Google’s putting tons of its energies these days.
  2. While keeping with the Google and mobile theme, a recent episode of our Thinks Out Loud podcast asks, “Google, Apple or Facebook: Who’ll Win the Mobile Web?” Spoiler: it’s too soon to tell. But check out the whole episode to understand why. And on the same topic, Quartz explores why Google can’t stop talking about mobile until it comes to real numbers.
  3. Another Search Engine Land piece offers a great FAQ all about the new Google RankBrain algorithm, which uses machine learning and artificial intelligence to improve its search results, and Search Engine Land also reports that the search giant now provides RLSA to AdWords Shopping Ads with its shopping remarketing lists. . Cool feature, and very welcome for e-commerce marketers.
  4. Quartz highlights a couple of breaking bit coin stories this week, including the EU admitting bitcoin is a currency and that AmEx just made its first bitcoin investment. I’m planning to delve deeper into what makes bitcoin important for the e-commerce and digital strategy space in the next few weeks. These Quartz articles will give you a head start on the topic.
  5. Business Insider shines a light on the latest from the NFL featuring its experiment with streaming. The A/V Club pours cold water on the league’s announcement that 15.2 million unique users viewed the stream in an article thoroughly submerged in snark, but still notes:
    “…three seconds of involuntary football fandom might not sound like much, but look at the product being offered. This was a game between two dreadful squads hailing from second-tier cities. It was played early on a weekend morning, and people in Buffalo and Jacksonville could see it on TV, giving them little reason to watch it online. Yahoo’s web stream was engineered to lack appeal… When Yahoo’s engineers were able to dupe 15.2 trillion people into spending more than zero time on Buffalo-Jacksonville, they succeeded in moving the needle. League officials can be happy…”

    It seems there may be something to this streaming thing in the future after all.

  6. Changing gears, eMarketer rounding up research from top marketers and found increasing audience engagement remains a key objective in social media marketing. Some wag once even went so far as to say that tactic represents the single most effective way to improve your brand’s digital marketing.
  7. A great piece over on KissMetrics says, “It’s Time to Kill These 8 Deadly Online Marketing Myths.” Yep. I agree.
  8. A recent article from the Harvard Business Review that states “Companies Value Curiosity but Stifle It Anyway​” provided the inspiration for my post, “Learning How to Fail.” Failure in e-commerce and marketing happens. Learning how to do it right ensures they’ll let you stick around to do it again.
  9. PSFK details five key retail trends every brand should invest in. Brilliant list, and well worth your time this week.
  10. And, finally, Ars Technica updates us all after the EU voted in favor of Internet fast lanes and slow lanes, striking a huge blow for net neutrality. This is a monumentally stupid idea. As I’ve said before, net neutrality matters for businesses large and small. This isn’t a partisan issue. It isn’t “socialism.” An open Internet benefits consumers and businesses, large and small alike. Stay tuned for more on this topic over time.

Hope you have a fantastic weekend, Big Thinkers. And here’s hoping you have an amazing week ahead too!

If you’re interested in learning more about making the social, mobile web work for your customers, be sure to check out these “8 Excellent Autumn E-commerce and Digital Marketing Posts,” these “6 Must-See Mobile Commerce Messages for You,” this set of “9 Digital Marketing Must-Reads for You This Weekend” and other entries from our E-commerce Link Digest series, plus these “7 Special E-Commerce and Digital Marketing Trending Topics: The Top Posts of September, 2015.”

And if you want learn even more about how your customers’ changing behavior shapes e-commerce and marketing, be sure and register to receive a special report I’ve produced in conjunction with hotel marketing firm Vizergy, “Digital Hotel Marketing in a Multiscreen World.” While it’s targeted specifically at hotel and resort marketers, the lessons apply to just about any business. You can get your free copy of the report here.

You can also check out these slides and video from my recent webinar, “Digital Marketing Directions: Three Key Trends Driving Your Marketing Next Year”:

And, finally, you might want to take a look at some of our past coverage of the e-commerce, mobile commerce, and digital marketing overall, including:

Tim Peter

By

September 13, 2015

6 Terrific Travel Marketing Trends You’ll Want to Review This Week

September 13, 2015 | By | No Comments

6 terrific travel marketing trends you'll want to review this weekThe world tour continues, Big Thinkers, as I find myself in sunny Cancun, Mexico this week. I’m lucky to be staying at a beautiful resort with gorgeous views of the ocean (well, technically, the Caribbean Sea). So I hope you won’t mind if I skip the setup and just get you right to the link goodness you’re looking forward to. With that in mind, here are 6 terrific travel marketing trends you’ll want to review this week. Enjoy:

  1. TripAdvisor released key insights from its “Using Guest Reviews to Pave the Path to Greater Engagement” report. Given that managing your ratings and reviews represents the single most effective way to improve your brand’s digital marketing, you’ll definitely want to check it out.
  2. Screen Pilot says, as OTAs rise, Google & Amazon wait their turn. They’re right. But Google & Amazon won’t wait long. You can check out my thoughts on Google’s distribution plans here and here, as well as what’s up with Amazon’s travel offering here.
  3. Hotel Marketing notes that Marriott rolls out Alipay to welcome Chinese travelers. One of the many reasons why mobile payments will rule in the longer-term is that conversion rates rise as payment options increase. Every. Single. Time. Marriott has just opened its doors to a whole host of Chinese guests — and they should expect those travelers to open their wallets in return. Very smart.
  4. Skift rounds up the week in digital travel marketing with a look at Facebook Booking, ad blocking and more. Definitely worth the read.
  5. Ryan Solutions asks “which hotel type is growing fastest/slowest on Facebook?” Very interesting information.
  6. And, finally, Mobile Commerce Daily explains why Airbnb did not just duplicate its iPhone app for Apple Watch. Cool stuff.

If you’re interested in more insights and information about travel marketing and distribution, be sure to check out these “6 Super Hotel Distribution Strategy Posts,” these “5 Amazing Mobile Hotel Marketing Stories,” a great set of “8 Exceptional Hospitality Marketing Posts from the Past Week: Hospitality Marketing Link Digest,” a terrific round-up of “7 Remarkable Posts about Mobile Marketing in Travel” and these “7 Brilliant Insights into Mobile Travel E-commerce” from our hospitality marketing link digests (part of the ongoing E-commerce Link Digest series).

And if you’re looking to learn even more about how changing guest behavior shapes hospitality marketing, e-commerce, and distribution, be sure an register to receive a special report I’ve produced in conjunction with hotel marketing firm Vizergy, “Digital Hotel Marketing in a Multiscreen World.” While it’s targeted specifically at hotel and resort marketers, the lessons apply to just about any business. You can get your free copy of the report here.

You might also want to take a moment to review the slides from my recent webinar, “Digital Marketing Directions 2015: Three Key Trends Driving Your Hotel Marketing Next Year” here:


(And, yes… you can hire me to speak at your next event, too).

Finally, you will definitely want to check out some of our past coverage of the mobile, local, social web and how to make it work for your business, including:

Tim Peter

By

July 16, 2015

Three Quick Business-Building Tips That Don’t Involve Google

July 16, 2015 | By | No Comments

Three tips to grow your business that don't involve GoogleWhat do email, social, and channel partner apps all have in common? They’re among the best ways you can grow your traffic—and your business— without Google, as I point out in my latest Biznology post. Here’s a quick excerpt:

“I debated whether to include channel partners in this list at all. For one thing, you use search, social, and email specifically to avoid using channel partners. And, let’s be fair, not all “partners” always actively work in your best interest.

That said, many channel partners have had great success in driving app adoption amongst customers, and may prove a valuable way to drive revenues and sales for your business. Just be sure that the ones you’re choosing work as a true partner and not in competition with your own direct efforts.

The best way to distribute your products or services via a channel partners’ app is an exceedingly complicated topic, well beyond the scope of this simple post. However, there are a few questions you should consider to help select appropriate partners to work with. Ask yourself:

  1. Can this partner reach a customer I can’t?
  2. Can they do that at a reasonable cost?
  3. Do they provide access to the end-consumer’s data? (So you can continue to build your list and decrease your dependence on partners overall)”

I think you’ll really enjoy the whole post, including entries on email and social—as well as a special bonus tip, too—so be sure to check it out on Biznology today.

And if you want learn even more about how your customers’ changing behavior shapes e-commerce and marketing, be sure an register to receive a special report I’ve produced in conjunction with hotel marketing firm Vizergy, “Digital Hotel Marketing in a Multiscreen World.” While it’s targeted specifically at hotel and resort marketers, the lessons apply to just about any business. You can get your free copy of the report here.

You can also check out these slides and video from my recent webinar, “Digital Marketing Directions: Three Key Trends Driving Your Marketing Next Year”:

And, finally, you might want to take a look at some of our past coverage of the e-commerce, mobile commerce, and digital marketing overall, including:

Tim Peter

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June 15, 2015

Facebook’s Big Beacon Secret

June 15, 2015 | By | No Comments

Facebook beacons: What do they mean for your business?

So, Facebook recently introduced its Place Tips for businesses, offering:

“…useful information about a business or landmark—like posts from the business’ Page, upcoming events and friends’ recommendations and check-ins—and show it at the top of News Feed to in-store visitors.”

And to make Place Tips work, the social media giant recommends requesting a free Facebook beacon for your storefront, restaurant, hotel, what-have-you. Linda Bustos over at GetElastic had a fairly fantastic run-down of the pros and cons of the beacons. But buried way down in that list is a brilliant insight, suggesting Facebook could also do this:

“Collect data on response to offers, like click to claim this offer, so the advertiser could have some form of measurement, record store traffic, not just Page traffic, etc.”

Now, why’s that so brilliant? Well, quite simply, Facebook makes most of its money from advertising. And what no one has been able to consistently do at all well is connect online-to-offline. Well, until now.

Maybe.

First, Facebook hasn’t said they’re going to do this. I can’t imagine they won’t. But they haven’t announced it yet.

Second, I suspect they haven’t announced end-to-end measurement because:

  1. Facebook hasn’t worked out the privacy details. Facebook, for all its past missteps, appears to be getting better at treating customer privacy with respect. They’re either not sure how to protect consumer privacy in this instance (especially when small businesses/local retailers/restaurants might only drive single-digit traffic in-store), or aren’t sure how to communicate it. Or both, I suppose. And then,
  2. They don’t know if it will work. It’s also possible that Facebook will want to see the data for themselves before opening it up to its business customers. But I suspect that, if their ads really do drive foot traffic, they’ll start telling that story real quick.

I’m really curious to see where this one goes and will be testing with some of my clients over the next few months. But given that Google has started to lose search share to mobile apps, these beacons offer Facebook an amazing opportunity to steal marketing dollars from the search giant as well. And, if they do, there’s no way Facebook keeps that a secret.

Do you want learn even more about how your customers’ changing behavior shapes e-commerce and marketing? Be sure an register to receive a special report I’ve produced in conjunction with hotel marketing firm Vizergy, “Digital Hotel Marketing in a Multiscreen World.” While it’s targeted specifically at hotel and resort marketers, the lessons apply to just about any business. You can get your free copy of the report here.

You can also check out these slides and video from my recent webinar, “Digital Marketing Directions: Three Key Trends Driving Your Marketing Next Year”:

And, finally, you might want to take a look at some of our past coverage of the e-commerce, mobile commerce, and digital marketing overall, including:

Tim Peter

By

May 28, 2015

Google’s Android Pay (Maybe) Addresses its Mobile Wallet Problem

May 28, 2015 | By | No Comments

Android Pay: Google's answer to its mobile wallet problem?

It’s finally happened. In the least surprising announcement from Google’s I/O keynote earlier today, Big G introduced Android Pay, a new mobile wallet platform that, according to The Verge, “…will take the place of Google Wallet on your phone.”

And, in possibly the lamest prediction I’ve ever made, I’d pointed out how obvious and necessary this move is earlier this year:

“Of course, as I’ve said many times, [mobile payments aren’t] just about Apple. Google, if they’re serious about mobile as a platform, have to get into the mobile payments game in a big way (I mean more than just their current, somewhat hobbled Google Wallet offering).”

And now they have.

Google’s introduction of their “mobile buy button” a few weeks ago shows that the search giant is starting to get serious about improving the mobile payments game, a critically important component for improving conversion rate and purchasing activity on mobile devices. However, it will take some convincing to show customers will adopt the service. Here’s the Verge describing how the new wallet works:

“Android Pay will power in-app and tap-to-pay purchases on mobile devices. Google Wallet will stick around, but it will power Play Store purchases outside Android, say on the web, and facilitate peer-to-peer payments you can make through the app and on services like Gmail. Confused? Let the new branding wash over you, and stop worrying so much.”

Ugh. The Verge sums up Google’s past (unfortunate) efforts here perfectly:

“The history of Google’s work on mobile payments has always embodied this frustrating mix of promising ambition and confusingly fraught execution.”

I’m unconvinced, but let’s hope they get it right this time.

Ultimately, I don’t care whose mobile wallet wins. Mostly.[1] You shouldn’t either. But you definitely want to see customers start using mobile wallets and using their phones to make purchases.

There’s a long way to go here, but it ought to be fascinating to watch. If you’re interested in past coverage of mobile wallets, and their importance to mobile commerce overall, make sure you check out these posts:

Do you want learn even more about how your customers’ changing behavior shapes e-commerce and marketing? Be sure an register to receive a special report I’ve produced in conjunction with hotel marketing firm Vizergy, “Digital Hotel Marketing in a Multiscreen World.” While it’s targeted specifically at hotel and resort marketers, the lessons apply to just about any business. You can get your free copy of the report here.

You can also check out these slides and video from my recent webinar, “Digital Marketing Directions: Three Key Trends Driving Your Marketing Next Year”:

And, finally, you might want to take a look at some of our past coverage of the e-commerce, mobile commerce, and digital marketing overall, including:

Note — Why Care Whose Digital Wallet Wins? You could argue that Google already holds too much data about customers, and, as the primary seller of advertising on the Web, represents the biggest threat to your business. As noted previously, “When someone else completely controls the road to your customers, it shouldn’t surprise you when they decide to install tollbooths.” That said, lots of customers aren’t buying on mobile today because it’s just too hard. Anything that improves the experience — at least for now — has more upsides than downsides. Plus, I’m not sure that Apple, Amazon, PayPal or any other credible competitor is any less risky. So, yes, let’s be sure we keep an eye on the potential toll collectors. But let’s get customers buying too. [Return to main post body]

Tim Peter

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May 18, 2015

Google’s Mobile Buy Button: Should You Buy In?

May 18, 2015 | By | One Comment

Google's mobile buy button: Is it a good idea for your business?Well, this is something: Google’s adding a “Buy button” to its search results. According to The Wall Street Journal” [paywall]:

“The search giant will start showing the buttons when people search for products on mobile devices, according to people familiar with the launch.”

Note where Google’s offering that button: On mobile searches, not on desktop. Why? Because desktop e-commerce more or less works… and mobile really doesn’t. As the Journal points out, “…it can be a bigger hassle to navigate a retailer’s page, and enter credit-card and shipping information, on small smartphone screens with error-prone keyboards.” These challenges really underscore why mobile payments represent such a huge game-changer for mobile commerce — and why Google’s efforts here represent such a huge deal. For example, the article says,

“…Google will let shoppers input payment credentials such as credit-card numbers one time, and the company will store those and automatically load them for future purchases on its shopping pages. Google won’t send those payment details to the retailers, one of the people said.”

Now, apparently, Google will accept a “wide range” of payment options, “…including digital payment methods from other providers.” I’m curious to see how long that lasts.

Of course, the fact that Google needs to monetize its mobile traffic more effectively undoubtedly also plays a role. And, to be fair, Google is sticking with a cost-per-click (CPC) model, not a cost-per-action (CPA). As Search Engine Land notes,

“[i]n a departure from Amazon and Ebay, participating Google Shopping advertisers will not have to forego a percentage of the transaction. Instead Google will continue to charge per ad click…”

Essentially, this will work similarly to Google’s Hotel Price Ads offering that travel marketers have dealt with for the last few years. Most hotel marketers would tell you that they’ve found the program generally successful, though worry about Google’s market power (they’re also dealing with slightly different market conditions, usually using both their own website and myriad other distribution channels such as Priceline, Expedia, etc. as opposed to manufacturers using only third-party distribution channels or retailers who may compete directly against Amazon or eBay, but not use those platforms to drive sales).

Regardless, this highlights a few key trends:

  1. User experience matters. Google clearly sees opportunity here to improve user experience and conversion rates (which, let’s face it, tend to move hand-in-hand) on mobile and improve overall mobile revenues for both their partners and themselves.
  2. Mobile’s a really big deal. Google isn’t offering this on desktop at all despite the fact that desktop was where they started with Hotel Price Ads, strongly suggesting that mobile’s really where all the action is right now.
  3. Reaching customers will continue to get more complicated. Jeff Bezos once said, “Your margin is my opportunity.” Google recognizes there’s margin here to play with and is going after it. There’s no way this is the last move in the game. Instead, Google’s potentially introducing another toll booth on the road to purchase — and time will tell when they start collecting.

Do I think you should do this? It depends. But it’s probably worth testing once they make it more widely available. Just keep paying attention to your actual cost of sale and don’t be afraid to shop for better options. Just, once you find them, I hope they give you a “Buy” button, too.

If you want to learn even more about how customers changing behavior shapes e-commerce and marketing, be sure an register to receive a special report I’ve produced in conjunction with hotel marketing firm Vizergy, “Digital Hotel Marketing in a Multiscreen World.” While it’s targeted specifically at hotel and resort marketers, the lessons apply to just about any business. You can get your free copy of the report here.

You can also check out these slides and video from my recent webinar, “Digital Marketing Directions: Three Key Trends Driving Your Marketing Next Year”:

And, finally, you might want to take a look at some of our past coverage of the e-commerce, mobile commerce, and digital marketing overall, including:

Tim Peter

By

May 15, 2015

10 Damn-Good Digital Marketing Posts: E-commerce Link Digest

May 15, 2015 | By | No Comments

Couple enjoying 10 damn-good digital marketing posts on their mobile phoneCrazy week around here, Big Thinkers. The good kind of crazy, that is, filled with loads of learning and quality time with clients. Hope you’ve had a great week, too. In keeping with the theme of the week, here’s a somewhat crazy collection of 10 damn-good digital marketing posts to see you through to next week. Enjoy:

  1. Leading off our list, this week’s episode of Thinks Out Loud asks, “Mobile Helps Software Eat the World. Will it Eat Your Business?” Be sure to check it out when you have a moment.
  2. Linda Bustos at GetElastic details some excellent omnichannel strategies for brands and online pureplays that are well worth your time.
  3. Marketing Charts has some terrific data showing that consumer perception of retailers’ data security impacts loyalty and W-O-M. Fascinating information.
  4. Another GetElastic post explains why the Apple Watch skeptics are wrong. Given the amount of press the Apple Watch specifically — and wearables generally — receive at the moment, you’ll want to check this out.
  5. While we’re on the topic of tech and its relationship to your business, take a listen to Episode 122 of our Thinks Out Loud podcast, which explores the long-term growth curve for mobile commerce. You’ll also probably enjoy this Mobile Commerce Daily article that says the iPhone is the biggest driver by far of in-store mobile payments.
  6. Switching to the social side of the spectrum, Social Quant offers up 8 Twitter lists you should be using, a fantastic resource for getting the most out Twitter for your business.
  7. And, in related news, Variety offers this amazing survey that shows YouTube stars are more popular than mainstream celebs among U.S. teens. This underscores the ways in which younger Millennials — and Millennials overall — consume entertainment and information. And that will help shape how you connect with this new generation of consumers as they come into the market in a more meaningful way over the next couple of years.
  8. Shifting gears to search, Search Engine Land provides an excellent look at how to replace Google’s “(Not Provided)” data to strike SEO gold. Great read.
  9. Email marketing remains a critical component of any successful digital marketing strategy, so this round-up of the latest data about email subject lines from Marketing Land offers outstanding information to improve your campaigns. You might also want to review these 7 key tips for more effective email marketing and the rest of our email marketing coverage here.
  10. Finally, don’t miss this round-up of 7 mobile commerce must-reads, the top posts from April that we posted last week.

While you’re at it, make sure to check out other entries from our E-commerce Link Digest series, including these 10 spectacular mobile marketing and e-commerce essays, this set of 6 major stories about Millennials and mobile commerce, and these 10 must-read e-commerce, search, and mobile posts, as well as these “9 Amazing Millennial, Mobile and Digital Marketing Columns: the Top Posts from March” when you get a moment, too.

Do you want learn even more about how your customers’ changing behavior shapes e-commerce and marketing? Be sure an register to receive a special report I’ve produced in conjunction with hotel marketing firm Vizergy, “Digital Hotel Marketing in a Multiscreen World.” While it’s targeted specifically at hotel and resort marketers, the lessons apply to just about any business. You can get your free copy of the report here.

You can also check out these slides I had the pleasure of speaking to a great audience recently about how to lead digital transformation within large organizations (a topic we’ve been talking about a fair bit lately). Here are the slides for your reference:

And, finally, you might want to take a look at some of our past coverage of the e-commerce, mobile commerce, and digital marketing overall, including:

Tim Peter

By

May 8, 2015

10 Spectacular Mobile Marketing and E-commerce Essays: E-commerce Link Digest

May 8, 2015 | By | No Comments

10 spectacular mobile marketing and e-commerce essaysHowdy, Big Thinkers. It’s a gorgeous spring day here at Thinks Central. Hope the same is true wherever you are. So, whaddya say we skip all the fuss and get straight to the links? Without further ado, here are 10 spectacular mobile marketing and e-commerce essays for you this week. Enjoy:

  1. Marketing Charts supplies data showing where consumers rate in-store personalization tactics as “cool” or “creepy.” Given the growth of beacons, NFC and other similar technologies to personalize customer experiences, expect to see a lot more about this in the near future.
  2. Along the same lines, the fine folks at WHISBI round-up the favorite shopping experiences of 14 retail experts. Interesting, thought-provoking list.
  3. The Wall Street Journal reports that Google rolls out new ads as mobile searches top PCs in 10 countries. The new ad formats are great and all. But read that headline again. Mobile searches top PCs in 10 countries. Wonder why I think mobile’s a really big deal? There’s your answer right there.
  4. Speaking of Google, Marketing Charts has the estimated mobile share of US organic search traffic, by engine. While Google continues to dominate, keep an eye on your customers’ increasing use of apps for discovery, possibly hurting Google’s overall market share over time. For instance, according to Google, while three-quarters of consumers use search at some point during their shopping process, fewer than half start with search for their research on mobile [see page 9 in this Google PDF]. Definitely worth keeping your eye on.
  5. Sticking with the mobile commerce theme, GetElastic has a great explanation of why mobile commerce is not “E-commerce 2.0.” Well worth your time.
  6. Speaking of items well-worth your time, you really want to check out this week’s episode of Thinks Out Loud, our weekly e-commerce and digital marketing podcast. This one examines the long-term growth curve for mobile commerce and is definitely worth a few moments of your time.
  7. Benedict Evans has a must-read post about connecting the next billion. Yet another reason I think mobile mobile’s a really big deal.
  8. On the mobile payments front, Bloomberg reports that Home Depot is aiming to put Apple Pay in its 2,000 stores, making it the largest retailer to come to the mobile payments party. Given this Marketing Land study that shows Millennials want in-store mobile payments, not human cashiers, I doubt they’ll be the last.
  9. For an fascinating example of how mobile will change your customers’ behavior, check out Fast Company’s look behind the scenes at Maple, the David Chang backed, delivery-only restaurant of the future. Really interesting read and a harbinger of the changes mobile creates across industries.
  10. Finally, its both pretty clear and bears repeating that, given all the changes in the marketplace and in your customers brought about by mobile, that mobile commerce is here to stay. So why not subscribe to Thinks to stay on top of the shifting digital marketing and e-commerce landscape, every day? You’ll be glad you did.

While you’re at it, make sure to check out other entries from our E-commerce Link Digest series, including these 6 major stories about Millennials and mobile commerce, these 10 must-read e-commerce, search, and mobile posts, these 10 awesome e-commerce, mobile, and millennial marketing posts, a great look at 5-plus can’t miss mobile commerce and marketing posts from the past week, and these 6 quick e-commerce and digital marketing winners, as well as these “7 Mobile Commerce Must-Reads: the Top Posts from April” when you get a moment, too.

Do you want learn even more about how your customers’ changing behavior shapes e-commerce and marketing? Be sure an register to receive a special report I’ve produced in conjunction with hotel marketing firm Vizergy, “Digital Hotel Marketing in a Multiscreen World.” While it’s targeted specifically at hotel and resort marketers, the lessons apply to just about any business. You can get your free copy of the report here.

You can also check out these slides I had the pleasure of speaking to a great audience recently about how to lead digital transformation within large organizations (a topic we’ve been talking about a fair bit lately). Here are the slides for your reference:

And, finally, you might want to take a look at some of our past coverage of the e-commerce, mobile commerce, and digital marketing overall, including: