Sophisticated digital marketing is closely linked to revenue growth and broader business success, according to Adobe Digital Index’s new “Best of the Best Benchmark” report for the Asia Pacific region (PDF).
Drawing on data from 120 billion visits to more than 16,000 Web sites, the research compares the success of the most functional and effective Web sites with the average performance across the market. Results are based on six key performance indicators: mobile and tablet traffic, stick rate, visits per visitor, time spent, and conversion rate.
ADI principal analyst Tamara Gaffney found that the top-performing sites continue to improve their performance compared with the average through investment in two crucial areas.
“What we’re really seeing is that those customers that invest in both technology and in organizational change are achieving excellent results,” Gaffney said. “Success is not just about the technology–it’s also about providing the right guidance and leadership to allow for change.”
Counting The Conversions
Online sales on the best-performing sites are twice the industry average–a result consistent with “best of the best” indices across the world, according to Gaffney.
The conversion rate for top online sales sites was 4.1 percent, compared with an industry average of just 2 percent. Although these numbers of visitors who make a purchase appear small, they have a multimillion-dollar impact on the bottom line across the 16,000 sites that participated in the survey.
“What we’re seeing is that the conversion rate is highest where organizations are investing in personalization and optimization, so that they can deliver exactly what the customer is looking for within a couple of clicks,” Gaffney said.
The survey identified considerable opportunities for businesses that optimize conversion for tablet users, in particular: These consumers tend not only to be more gadget-oriented, but also more affluent.
Meanwhile, smartphone users are among the most highly engaged Web browsers, readily consuming email, search services, and social media. In fact, according to Gaffney, ADI research shows that smartphone users are more likely to use search engines to sate their curiosity and investigate a new site or product. Therefore, Web sites that are optimized for smartphone users can serve as an excellent tool for winning new customers or retaining existing ones.
“Many companies avoid optimizing the Web presence for smartphones because it can be a very complex process; however, those that do are more likely to win new customers based on their smartphone experience,” Gaffney said.
Intriguingly, stick rate–the percentage of consumers who visit multiple pages on a Web site–varies substantially among regions, with a 66 percent difference between the best-performing sites and the average, according to Gaffney.
“It costs marketers a huge amount of money to get visitors to their sites in the first place, and if they just come in and go again, it’s usually an indication they haven’t found what they’re looking for,” Gaffney said. “This is an important indicator of the overall success of a site and of the acquisition strategies.”
The best-performing sites provide information that is relevant, engaging, and targeted, Gaffney added. They run a tightly integrated digital marketing campaign.
Closing The Gap
Although the difference between the most effective digital marketers and the average is widening, Gaffney said the report reveals that making the transition from ineffective to effective digital marketing is possible.
“The real secret revealed through the research is that companies that actually invest in their systems, people, and culture are able to improve their performance,” Gaffney said. “When you invest in the right way, it is possible to accelerate ahead of the competition, and that’s what the best-performing [Web sites] demonstrate.”
ADI’s “Best of the Best” survey revealed some overall intriguing findings for the Asia Pacific region:
• I’ll be back!: The best-performing Web sites attract return visitors at a rate 25 percent higher than the Asia Pacific region’s average.
• Get mobile: The gap between average and best-in-class mobile optimization is widening in every country in the survey. Web sites optimized for smartphone access are reaping the benefits, capturing vastly greater market share, especially in markets where mobile broadband penetration is high, such as South Korea.
• Sticking around: Stick rates are rising across the Asia Pacific region. The best-performing sites in India are leading the way, with the top organizations improving their stick rates by 14 percent in the past 12 months.
• Take a tablet: Australians, New Zealanders, and South-East Asians are the most likely to use their tablets to visit Web sites, with the best-performing sites in these markets achieving about 5 percent more tablet visits than the global average.
• Clock watching: Time spent on Web sites is higher in Australia, New Zealand, and South-East Asia, but has fallen year-on-year in all other countries. It is highest in India.
About Adobe Digital Insights
Adobe Digital Insights publishes research on digital marketing and other topics of interest to senior marketing and e-commerce executives across industries. Research is based on the analysis of select, anonymous, and aggregated data from more than 5,000 companies worldwide that use the Adobe Digital Marketing Cloud to obtain real-time data and analysis of activity on websites, social media, and advertising.
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