Enter The Matrix.

 

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The raw reality of selling online

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Head over to YouTube and you’ll find an endless supply of gurus preaching the e-commerce fairytale. Lambos, margaritas by the pool and complete freedom!

Fortunately for all of us, every now and then, somebody comes out and speaks about the tough reality. This time it’s Steven Black.

Starting a business online is like jumping into the deep ocean with an open cut on your leg and a knife in your hand. If the sharks don’t kill you, the waves might.

That’s more or less the tone of his post, written as a piece of advice to anyone looking to jump into this adventure.

It’s a good eye-opener for those starting out, and a list of reasons to be proud of for veterans:

  • You’re going to have your happy days, but the learning curve is steep and you have to overcome more failures than victories, no matter how far you take it.
  • Nothing in online selling happens fast, except losing your shirt. It will take much longer than you think before you feel the elation of victory.
  • Don’t get married to a product or brand. If it fails, just learn from it and move on.
  • Running different businesses without the first being stable is like trying to maintain a committed relationship with multiple women. A lot of stress and nocive for everyone involved.
  • Cashflow is the number one chokepoint for any business.
  • If you can’t spend massive amounts of time alone then this thing ain’t for you.
  • You need to treat this like you have an infant on life support.

Despite all this, there is an upside if you make it through the odyssey. The life of the gurus awaits!

We usually limit our posts to practical ones, but this one truly deserves a read.


SNAPCHAT

Snap’s DPAs get rolled out to more advertisers

Dynamic Product Ads (DPAs) on Snapchat are now available to advertisers in the UK, Middle East, Germany and Australia.

How do DPAs work? After uploading your Product Catalog to the platform, the Ads Manager will automatically provide various templates built out of your product images.

With Dynamic Ads, Snapchat even updates product information changes such as price changes and availability into your campaigns.

Who are the latest beneficiaries? The launch of DPAs opens up a route for us to target Gen Z and Millennial audiences with relevant product creatives throughout the consumer journey.

Brands like Topshop, Adidas and Farfetch have already taken part in the beta test for this feature and saw an increased ROAS during the tests.


SPONSORED BY ARGYLE MEDIA

The Nutra COD Offer With 170%+ ROI: An Argyle Media Case Study

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Without wasting any time, let’s get right into this case study from the SE Asian market.

  • Affiliate network: Argyle Media
  • OFFER: TestoUltra-ED
  • GEO: Indonesia
  • Traffic source: Facebook
  • Cost: $656
  • Revenue: $1820
  • Profit: $1163
  • Confirmation rate: 80%
  • ROI: 177%

SE Asia markets have been growing at an exponential rate which is what makes this case study even more interesting. Not many people use online payments and that’s where COD comes in as a solution.

The average CPC cost in Indonesia is about 62% lower than the US which means smaller budgets ($50/day) gather enough data for quick decision making.

The idea was this: Create several ad sets in each account, target different audiences and compare the data. Then, remove the ones with poor conversion-rate performance.

Initial Results: The CTR was fine and they even started getting conversions at a cost per conversion of around $1.2.

The ban hammer: It was obviously time for the account to get banned. Reason? They felt that it could be the usage of overly-aggressive creatives.

Learning: Pay more attention to the balance when playing the FB game, don’t go overboard aggressive.

That’s not the end of the case study. There are a few more problems that came up that are explained in the full case study. Plus, the sweet news is that this campaign and offer are still working!

Do not miss out on the entire Argyle Media Case Study here.

 


EMAIL

Enter The Email Deliverability Matrix

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If you watched The Matrix, you’ll probably remember the famous scene where Neo, the protagonist, gets some plugs stuck in his head that upload kung-fu to his brain. 30 seconds later and he’s flying around and throwing kicks like a black belt.

That’s what we had in mind when writing this email deliverability guide: Upload all our deliverability experience into your business. This is literally part of our internal documentation.

What’s inside the guideAll the things we’ve learned over the course of sending 2M plus emails and achieving an average open rate of 47.6%.

You can apply this information right now, too. It doesn’t matter how many emails you’ve sent so far. We had sent zero newsletters before we started this one, so you can definitely do it too!

You won’t be throwing kicks and jumping off skyscrapers like Neo, but you will learn things like:

  • How Gmail deliverability works.
  • How to avoid emails getting clipped and why it matters.
  • How to set up Google Postmasters to track your domain and IP reputation.
  • GlockApps: The secret weapon we use every day to test inbox placements and the right way to use it with practical tests and improvement examples.
  • Techie stuff such as setting up DKIM, DMARC, SPF and BIMI.
  • How the HTML size of your emails affects deliverability and what to do about it.
  • How CSS can break your email design completely.
  • Clicks, opens, and replies: Which one is most important for deliverability?
  • How to build a “Welcome Email” that boosts your open rates in the future.
  • List hygiene best practices.

And that’s just the tip of the iceberg. We’ve included as many examples as we could and step-by-step guides on how to implement each point, exactly like we do it.

Over two years of daily tests and experience condensed into one guide that you can plug into your business, whether you are a blogger, an e-commerce store or simply somebody that wants to have their emails opened more often.

Enter the deliverability matrix.


ROUNDING UP THE STACK

  • SEO: Clicks to featured snippets will now take users to the highlighted content on the webpage.
  • GOOGLE: Remember yesterday’s post about Google secretly scraping user’s data? The fine could be $5B, and it even tracked users in Incognito mode.
  • INSTAGRAM: This might confuse some users, but Instagram is testing an option that allows users to open Messenger from IG direct messages.
  • PPC: WordStream brings you the latest PPC benchmarks from around 21 industries. Have a look at what went up and what went down.
  • BING: Similar Sites, a new feature in Bing Webmaster Tools allows you to compare your site’s backlinks with your competitors’ sites.

BRAIN TEASER

What did the zombie bring to bed?

You can find the solution here.


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POOLSIDE CHAT

Cool tech, (funny) business, lifestyle and all the other things affiliates like to chat about while sipping cocktails by the pool.

Digital, business-friendly tourism is here

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This will appeal to most of you digital nomads who like to travel the world while working remotely using that time-tested combination of a laptop and a WiFi connection.

Estonia has become the first country to introduce the concept of a digital nomad visa, allowing foreign nationals whose work is not dependent on their location to work in Estonia.

While this new visa format can be both short-term and long-term, it will be subject to general visa conditions.

It will require a mediator who assumes responsibility for your stay, and you must have enough funds for staying in Estonia.

It’s another step from Estonia to welcome more digital businesses. So how many of you are looking to change your travel plans and move to Estonia?

Oh, and if you’re not sure about Estonia, your all-inclusive trip to meet The Crew at Vienna is still open. All you have to do is… oh come on, you know what you have to do.


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