People using DuckDuckGo as their primary search engine is increasing as online privacy becomes a priority.
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Marketing on DuckDuckGo

DuckDuckGo is becoming an increasingly popular search engine due to the fact that individuals are paying more attention to the tracking of their online activity being utilized by other search engines.  Restricting paid ads to the “usual” search engines which have historically held a majority of market share may be limiting your exposure to potential customers and clients.

If you’ve been thinking about incorporating DuckDuckGo into your PPC stack, here are some facts you need to know at a glance:

  • DuckDuckGo uses info from Apple Maps vs. Google Maps for location searches.
  • DuckDuckGo uses Yelp search results for ratings and review searches.
  • DuckDuckGo has about 1% of market share of all searches in the United States according to Stat Counter.  Data is based on usage from Feb 2018 thru Feb 2019.

Source: StatCounter Global Stats – Search Engine Market Share

  • DuckDuckGo market share (users) in the United States has grown at an average rate of +75% over the past four years.
  • In SriLanka, DuckDuckGo is as preferred as Google, providing the same number of search results to the same number of users in that region of the globe. (More details from Quora.)
  • DuckDuckGo paid ads uses the same model as Google and Bing – you only pay for clicks, not impressions or a monthly fee.
  • More than half the searches on DuckDuckGo are on mobile, compatible with Apple iPhones since it’s using Apple location data.
  • Location based searches are just as valid on DuckDuckGo since search results are based on keyword. So when a user types in “Dentist in Smallville,” the location is within the query. “Near me” queries are typically made on a mobile device and therefore using the location data sent via the phone.
  • Use a Bing Ad account to run ads on DuckDuckGo.
  • DuckDuckGo has agreements with Amazon and Ebay, meaning product searches on DuckDuckGo will result in Amazon and Ebay results vs. Google Shopping results – good to know if you have an e-commerce site.
  • DuckDuckGo is not know for “influencing” user experience or attempting to include “ephemeral” messages on SERPs.  In fact, the attractiveness of DuckDuckGo to many users is that the search engine provides results based on nothing except keyword relevancy.
  • Remarketing and Retargeting are not available to users of DuckDuckGo since the search engine retains no user data.

For digital marketing help contact the Savvy Sister Marketing team.  We specialize in small and mid-sized businesses, and we empower business owners to understand their marketing and what increases their bottom line.  Call Now – We’ll Get You There.

Using chat can help you qualify leads and turn browsers into buyers!
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Qualifying Leads Using Chat and Chatbots

Push leads down the sales funnel using chat (Chatbots)

In business and in marketing – it’s all about the leads. But today, with so many choices, options and research available, getting the average visitor to take action is a lot more challenging than it used to be.

Take a step back and look at ways to educate, rather than persuade the customer. At this point in the funnel, they’re not looking seriously at solutions. They’re involved in the discovery process – learning what’s out there and what options they have available. You need to prove you’re even worth listening to by illustrating your expertise in a way that’s helpful and knowledgeable, not pushy

The first thing you should do is use chatbots as analytic tools. This allows you to effectively develop bot scripts optimized for conversions.

Using chat can help you qualify leads and turn browsers into buyers!

Using chat can help you qualify leads and turn browsers into buyers!

Chatbots can be programmed to track purchasing patterns and monitor data from consumers. This tells a company which products to market differently, which to market more and which to redevelop for relaunch.

Most digital marketing platforms and campaigns have countless data sets. However, a chatbot can sift through that data at lightning speed, picking out the most relevant bits.

Once you have collected your chatbot analytics, you can optimize it by writing sales funnel minded scripts. This can be done using different messages to see which ones fuel the most engagement, and thus more likely to lead consumers down the sales funnel.

Using email integration, chatbots can nurture leads and push customers farther down the sales funnel. This is due to their versatility and ability to compile valuable consumer data in an effective and efficient way.

This greatly speeds the time it takes to nurture leads. Did you know it takes a human eight hours, on average, to follow up with a lead and 50 percent of leads are never followed up on. That is a lot of potential sales lost.

Automating your follow up efforts via chatbots ensures all leads are attended to. They can also qualify leads based on the consumer data they collect, including location, product preferences, buying habits, age, gender, etc.

If you’re a small business owner seeking digital marketing help, contact us here at Savvy Sister Marketing. Whether you’re looking to understand your marketing ROI, increase market share, achieve on social, or just feel more confident about your online presence, give us a call today!

Requirements for SSL Certificates Vary By Search Engine
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SSL Certificate Requirements Vary by Search Engine

Don’t be intimidated by email saying your site won’t work without an SSL.  While there is a grain of truth to this, there’s no reason to panic, and there’s certainly no reason to pay more than necessary for an SSL for your site.

Your Current Internet Host can Provide Security Cert – You don’t Need to Hire another Outside Service.

If you’re a small business owner, and the admin email attached to your site is your own, you’re probably getting an abundance of emails telling you your site needs a security certificate.  There’s alot of phishing going on, and it will be very easy for small business owners to pay too much for this, but hopefully this information will help you understand WHY you need an SSL on your site now, and WHY you don’t have to be intimidated by aggressive emails stating your site will no longer show in a SERP.

In recent years there has been a growing debate on just how important SSL certificates are, and whether or not they are needed for every website. Google itself have recently stated that they are beginning to prioritise secure websites (https) over non-secure websites (http) in their search algorithms. This is all part of Google’s wider campaign to encourage safe transmission of all information across the web. While they claim such preference is only minimal, a number of companies are now paying more attention to the importance of SSL security, with several other big name corporations such as WC3 and Facebook encouraging every website to use SSL encryption.

What is an SSL Certificate?

An SSL (secure sockets layer) certificate is a digital certificate that both authenticates the identity of a website, and encrypts sensitive information so that any passwords, addresses or credit card numbers can not be intercepted or read by anyone other than the intended recipient.

How they work

In the same way that we use keys to lock and unlock doors, SSL certificates use keys to validate and protect sensitive information. A certificate signing request or CSR must also be created on the server. This creates a pair of public and private keys. The public key is used to encrypt (lock) the sensitive information, whilst the private key is used to decrypt (unlock) the information provided and restore it to its original format so that it can be read.

Requirements for SSL Certificates Vary By Search Engine

Requirements for SSL Certificates Vary By Search Engine

Why are SSL Certificates Important?

When you use a website http messages are flying around over the network.  When you fill in a contact form or simply click a link a small packet of information in text format gets sent over the network by your computer.  If you put your email address into a contact form and hit submit the packet of information (very similar to a plain text file) will contain your email address within it.  This packet will then get sent to every machine on the network. If you happen to be using wireless then this information will be sent over the air.  This means that anyone can sniff the air or plug into the network and read these unencrypted packets of information. If this information is simply a request to go to another webpage it’s probably not a problem, but if it happens to contain your credit card information then we could have a serious problem.

Unfortunately the internet and more specifically the http protocol is not secure by default, https however is secure because each of these packets gets encrypted before it is sent, meaning only the intended recipient can decrypt and read the message.

There are a number of reasons why SSL security is important:

  • Online payments: – A secure connection is required for websites that take any form of online payments, be it through credit card payments or third-party payment processors such as Worldpay or PayPal. In recent months, however, the web has also seen an increasing number of non-ecommerce websites using ssl encryption on their websites, with big players such as the BBC, Facebook and Google also endorsing the change, even though they do not directly sell through their websites.
  • Data security: It’s not just credit card details that are vulnerable to attacks online. Other personal information such as email addresses and social media messaging are also at risk. SSL encryption allows for the safe passage of this information, blocking it from any potential third-party access or unwanted hacks. If your website encourages its visitors to sign up to any memberships, or fill out any contact forms, then SSL encryption should be considered in order to safe guard this information.
  • Site verification: – SSL certificates authenticate and verify the owner of a website, preventing that site from any potential phishing attacks, where third-party hackers often impersonate a website in order to obtain personal information.
  • Verification of information: – SSL certificates also provide verification of the information that is listed on websites. This is particularly apparent on news sites such as the BBC or Guardian, and further prevents a users content from being altered by any third-parties.

Conclusion

If you run a small brochure site, or do not require any personal information to access certain areas of your website then you are in no major rush to upgrade to an ssl certificate. While Google has announced that they are beginning to favour secure websites over non-secure websites in search rankings, the implications are still small, and Firefox is yet to stop displaying non-secure websites.

However, if your website does require any level of personal information then online security is particularly important especially when shopping online. Even if you are simply entering an email address over wireless connection, this information can be vulnerable to third party access if your site simply operates on http access. Securing this information with SSL encryption (https) immediately combats any risk of unwanted sharing of your information. “Privacy by Default” is the new internet mantra and this is a message that companies such as Google and Facebook have began to endorse.

avoiding pop up ads makes a better user experience - woman sitting at computer smiling
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User Experience and the Coalition for Better Ads

User experience is paramount in the new Chrome.

By way of explaining this, let’s travel back in time to the 1900s. Waaaaaay back in the early 1990s when AOL, Earthlink, and Yahoo were what people were using to browse the web, online advertising was in its infancy. Ads were strictly placement ads on specific websites, and sites were, believe it or not, actually indexed by human beings who would read content on a page and determine what type of query that page would satisfy. It was the wild west for online advertising because anything flashy, huge, multi-colored, and attention-grabbing was permitted.

avoiding pop up ads makes a better user experience - woman sitting at computer smiling

For best user experience, avoid pop-up ads and promotions on your site as much as possible.

Fast forward to late 1990s and early 2000, some genius college students realized what a horrible experience browsing the web was and decided to change that. Introducing Google. Google search engine was groundbreaking in that it would not show results that were paid, it would show results that were RELEVANT to the query.

Without getting into the AdWords bidding system, let’s just say that the algorithm scored “documents” (landing pages) based on their relevance to a query, and the amount that webpage owner was bidding to show their ad was a factor, but not the deciding factor. This immediately raised the bar for user experience. No longer were users at the mercy of the highest bidder. Google was the first browser to be user-centric and, therefore, rapidly became the most popular browser in the online world.

Since then, Google has set the standard for not only what is a good user experience, but what is an appropriate ad. Ads can no longer make outrageous guarantees or bait-and-switch. Advertisers are held to a fairly high standard because it’s built into the search engine algorithm that if the query does not match the information (images and text) on the page, that page ranks very low in both paid and organic results.

Now, a new level of filtering is coming into play, and it’s largely due to the findings of the Coalition for Better Ads. The role of the Coalition for Better Ads is to, like Google, ensure that the internet is a PLEASANT experience for users, users find search results helpful, and advertisers are held to a very high standard of integrity and ad quality.

The Coalition for Better Ads has actually indexed sites that offer poor user experiences, and the new Google Chrome Ad Filter, which is built right into the browser, is utilizing this data to determine which ads show and which don’t. In other words, if your site offers a terrible user experience because of pop-ups, flashing text or distracting animations, or if your site has videos that auto-play, or prestitial ads with a countdown (the ad covers the page until the countdown ends), the Coalition for Better Ads has probably deemed your site “correlated with an increased propensity for consumers to adopt ad blockers.” That’s a mouthful, but it basically means the site is annoying, misleading or distracting to a user, and, therefore, is NOT offering a good user experience.

In summary, do NOT put pop-ups on your site.