New e-commerce website

We are pleased to be working on a new e-commerce website for Balthazar, a UK based company that runs spas and sells beauty products in Saudi Arabia.  A fascinating challenge, we are creating a completely different user experience.  Female consumers in Saudi are cash rich and spend a lot of time researching products on the web.  As they are currently not allowed to drive, their store based retail experiences are restricted.  We will therefore be working to transfer retail theatre to the online journey.

IPv6 scaremongering – should you worry?

Media coverage today is stating that the world will run out of IP addresses tomorrow – what does this mean for your website?

What are IP addresses?

Devices connected to the web are given IP addresses that behave like phone numbers.  With the number of mobile devices that are now connected to the web, the current system (named IPv4) of 4.1 billion addresses in the 1980s is set to be fully allocated to regional authorities by the end of this week.  Once these have been distributed to individual clients there will be no more IPv4 addresses.

What happens next?

IPv4 will be replaced by IPv6 (version 6) which will enable a seemingly inexhaustible number of IP addresses.  There are concerns however about translation issues – IPv4 and IPv6 are, in essence, different ‘languages’ which means that there will be challenges connecting IPv6 addresses to websites using IPv4.

Do I need to worry?

It makes sense to ensure that your digital agency is prepared for IPv6 – many have been slow to experiment with it because of a lack of immediate benefits.  John Curran, Chief Executive of the American Registry for Internet Numbers states that only about 2% of websites worldwide currently support IPv6.

Apparatus clients have no need to worry –  Our datacentres are already compatible with IPv6 and we have already been allocated IPv6 addresses.  Testing is well underway to ensure a smooth transition.

SEO – organic search or paid search?

SEO is a specialism, but if you are apportioning your budget, which works best – natural search or paid search?

Recent Performics and ROI research came out with the folllowing statistics:

Do you know the difference between natural and paid search results?

  • 63% said Yes
  • 37% said No

The age groups of those who knew the difference between natural and paid search results:

  • 18-29 – 80% said Yes
  • 30-39 – 59% said Yes
  • 40-49 – 63% said Yes
  • 50-59 – 58% said Yes
  • 60+ – 52% said Yes

How often do you click on natural and paid search results?

Natural results:

  • 37% Always
  • 42% Frequently
  • 15% Occasionally
  • 4% Rarely
  • 2% Never

Paid results:

  • 5% Always
  • 15% Frequently
  • 43% Occasionally
  • 29% Rarely
  • 8% Never

Why are users searching?

  • 83% use search engines to find specific products or brands.
  • 78% did informational search queries after seeing an ad for a product or brand
  • 80% use search engines to research a specific product or brand before purchasing online.
  • 76% use search engines to research a specific product or brand before purchasing offline.
  • 78% said that they used search engines to find the best price for specific products.
  • 74% used search engines to find where they can purchase a specific product or brand offline.

This research backs up the belief that organic SEO is crucially important. Consumers not only trust natural search results more than paid search, but are also more responsive to brands and businesses appearing high in the rankings.  It also casts a caveat over paying too much attention to ROI directly from your website – behaviour shows that users are as likely to research online but respond offline.

The verdict: weight your budget to organic SEO

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