There are some interesting tidbits in this issue of our newsletter! Product Listing Ads are big, as are the changes to Twitter's platform. But wait, there's also lots of chatter about blog comments on the Web too.
New into the e-commerce product selling market with product images in their search results, Bing Ads enters with a new service offering called Bing Product Ads. With huge returns for e-commerce stores and familiarity with Google Shopping (previously known as Product Listing Ads), Bing Product Ads are sure to be a hit. For early embracers of this new program the ability for them to own their product market on Bing is a huge incentive to move in fast. Well, at least for now, while there is not strong competition for buyers. You can read Bing's full announcement.
I have found the biggest stumbling block to businesses moving into either Google or Bing's product program is the creation of the data feed. It is onerous to create the taxonomy to match both Bing and Google's criteria that allows for them to sort and return your products in ads within their search results.
I have found that Lexity may provide the perfect solution in regards to data feed creation for many sites. For Bing Ads, Lexity provides several tiers of service with monthly fees plus a click budget, and services over 36 different shopping carts. With big business now being done starting with consumers clicking a picture of a product in search results and then moving all the way to the purchase process Lexity provides the right service at the right time.
Although not everything that Lexity sells in their own toolbox has value, the Bing Ads and Google Shopping programs are of important note and something that e-commerce stores should definitely consider using. The ROI that I have seen from clients of mine that are using Lexity to create the product ads for Bing and Google is extremely good.
In our new visual and video saturated world where images, pins, and cover photos are all the rage, Twitter has stagnated with their text-based layout until now. Coming soon to your Twitter profile is a "Facebook-like" look that has a much more interesting visual look and feel.
I hardly ever click into my Twitter profile as I almost exclusively use third party apps to build and send my content three times a day to my various Twitter accounts. With a new image-interesting profile coming to Twitter accounts, Twitter may soon become a platform-venue like Facebook.
Becoming a venue is all the better for Twitter, allowing it to promote ads on a page if they can attract users back in to view profiles of people they follow or for that matter to spend more time actually "on" their profile then sending things "to" their profile.
Here's a great article to give you some visual previews of the Twitter's new look. When you see the huge cover, ability to post more images and video, favorite posts, and to create more visual interest you'll say just like me, "Wow this sure looks like Facebook!"
All Twitter profiles will be migrated to the new look on May 28th. Take a look at the new McCord Web Services look on Twitter to get a feeling of what's here.
Copyblogger, a very high profile and active blogsite, recently decided to stop allowing comments on its blog. Although the owner of Copyblogger tried to turn back the tide of negative pushback by citing it was a simple business decision, several online pundits have challenged the purpose of this action.
Here's what I think about allowing or not allowing blog comments.
1. Yes, it is each business owner's decision to allow or not allow blog comments on their own blog. But...
2. Some of the best exchanges on high profile blogs are actually found in the comment section as other pros in the industry weigh in. In many cases I have followed links, researched additional products mentioned in a comment, and in some cases even expounded on a post and comments on my own blog.
3. If you only want to have a conversation about your blog on Google+, Facebook, or Twitter, where your real tactic is to drive links to boost up your blog, it seems weird to me to then have valuable content and just point to it, driving traffic away from your blog. Keep the conversation where the content is. Don't say "read our blog, but if you want to comment on it go to our Facebook or Google+ page."
4. Blogging is about commenting and soliciting comments. Although I will not chose to not visit a site that does not have blog comments enabled, many times I do read a post and scroll to see what others say to weigh the validity of the information I just read in a blog post.
5. I allow comments on my own blog and recommend that clients do so as well, but encourage pre-approval of comments and a periodic review of what to publish. Not all comments on my blog are published as I will net out spam and self-promoting comment posts.