Thursday, October 19, 2006

McDonalds with innovative blog initiative

Update! McDonalds actually follows this campaign up personally. This post did not qualify! Hurray for McDonalds. This might be an example of a successful blog marketing campaign!

I'm impressed. I used to go alot to McDonalds, but after the movie SuperSize me, I rarely go there. However I do love their milkshakes. I live in Stockholm, but I'm frequently in Oslo, Norway.

This picture is taken from McDonalds in Oslo, where I used to go alot.

So again, I'm not a fan of McDonalds food, but one positive aspect is the travelling aspect. Since I know McDonalds has really strict guidelines regarding their food, I always know that McDonalds serves the same food all over the world. So to me - McDonalds makes me feel safe when eating in foreign countries. Even though it's junkfood, I know that it's safe compared to those noname restaurants. You can read more about the McDonalds initiative here.(in Norwegian). An interesting part of this marketing campaign is that McDonalds is trying to stimulate the conversation by paying money to bloggers. That means that I make money for blogging about mcdonalds. They are walking on a thin line here. Bloggers might react with rage since McDonalds is trying to commecialize blogging.

Wednesday, October 18, 2006

Google replaces "I'm feeling lucky" with "shop" button

Consumer research released by last week showed that when tested head to head against Google, users preferred’s shopping search results by a 55% to 45% margin.

Some time ago, information about Google's "I'm feeling lucky" button leaked from Google, showing that almost noone uses the button.

If Google's goal is to give relevant information to the searchers, they would replace the "I'm feeling lucky" button with a button that says "Shop".

This could improve the search results for the people looking to shop. It would increase the conversion rates for online merchants and Google would make much more money on ads showing up when people hit the "shop" button.

On the otherhand, Google might confuse the users by changing a button. I think it would be a smart.

Tuesday, October 17, 2006

Google Analytics vs. nettracker and other web analytics packages

Alot of discussions about web analytics turns into arguments concerning page view, hits, unique visitors, visits, etc. The focus should be on the trends. I've taken stats from Nettracker and Google Analytics and compared the two different stats. Here are the results.
As you can see the trends for both statistics packages are the same. On average Google Analytics Visits number is only 58% of the values that Nettracker reports as visits.

It doesn't matter which one is correct as long as the trends are similar!

Tuesday, October 10, 2006

10 ways to improve Google search

Larry Page once said: "The ultimate search engine would understand exactly what you mean and give back exactly what you want".

I believe Larry Page, co-founder of Google, is wrong!

I think it's possible to go beyond giving people what they want. I believe that a search engine that gives me "more than I want" would be better than Larry's ultimate search engine.

Larry wants the search engine to meet your expectations. I want a search engine that exceeds your expectations.

So here are 10 ways to improve Google search. Somebody has probably written all of this before and Google(or somebody else) is probably working on all of it as we speak, but I'm writing it anyway.

1. Improve inbound link factoring. Instead of just valueing inbound links from quality websites like PageRank does, give higher scores to inbound links from websites that my friends and professional network value. This shouldn't be that difficult using data from my list of MSN-friends, the people I send mail to through gmail and the google toolbar.

2. Ask clarifying questions. When a user searches for Columbia, asks you: "Did you mean Space Shuttle Columbia or the country Columbia".

3. Include conversion factors in the ratings. Increase the search scores of sites with high conversion rates. These sites probably have desirable product offerings that are more relevant than sites with low conversion rates.(Google is probably already measuring this for a lot of companies)

4. Increase the search scores of sites with loyal users. A site that people are loyal to is probably a good and relevant site.

5. Introduce a human side. Connect the Google search results directly with Google Answers. Can't find what you're looking for? Get a quality answer to your search from a real person that's an expert on what you're searching for

6. Add e-mail notification features. Include the option of e-mail notification when a person responds to your search

7. Add Social search. Add functionality similar to where google's search result pages are enriched with information about the sites from people I trust.

8. Analyse sentences. Give the user options in the search results to let the user narrow down on the search. See how the search engine does it.

9. Switch the "I'm feeling lucky" button with "I wanna shop". Usability studies performed on indicate that people like the two options better than Google's options. According to Google studies, nobody uses the "I'm feeling lucky" button on Google anyway.

10. has some nice people search functionality. I can actually type down the name of a person in Norway and get address information and which companies that person is affiliated with. Pretty neat.

Feel free to comment and improve. Some of my suggestion categories probably overlap. I will try to improve the list as I get comments.