We recently spoke to 50 kitchen / bathroom / interiors companies to gauge how they feel about digital marketing.
Why did we choose this sector? We have some lovely home interest clients and therefore know it well. It has always struck me as one where traditional print ads are still the ‘go to’ form of advertising and digital is often playing catch up, despite obvious proof that consumers are turning to Google to plan and source their next kitchen…
It can be a very traditional sector and we were therefore interested to explore attitudes to online marketing and investigate how digitally-savvy its marketers are.
The survey was intended to be short and sweet – just five simple questions conducted by telephone research. Thank you to everyone who took the time to answer the questions – it is greatly appreciated.
Without further ado, what did the research tell us about how digital marketing is perceived within the sector?
1) How would you describe your personal digital marketing knowledge / skill level?
It is great to see that 39% of the marketers that we spoke to were confident in their digital marketing knowledge, although less encouraging to see that only 6% described themselves as very confident in all areas of digital marketing and 16% felt that they were totally inexperienced in digital marketing.
On balance, I think that this is a positive result as over 67% of respondents scored themselves between 2 (know the basics but not especially confident) and 4 (very confident in some, but not all, areas). I would expect the level of knowledge and confident to grow over the coming years as more brands appreciate that ignoring digital will harm their bottom line.
2) How happy are you with your website’s performance?
This is a great result and shows that digital is a hugely important channel. Only 6% of respondents felt that their website was a total waste of time and it is excellent to see that 82% are happy or ecstatic with their sites.
12% of respondents felt that their websites were good but were frustrated by the fact that nobody really visited it. This is like having the best showroom in the world but one that is hidden down an obscure country lane. Your showroom needs footfall to fulfil its potential and websites require traffic to deliver the value that you desire.
3) Do you use web analytics to measure the performance of your site?
This is an interesting result as it would suggest that the perception of website performance (see question 2) is based more on gut feel than fact. If 29% never look at analytics and only 24% use analytics very frequently, you have to question how website performance is being evaluated.
Perhaps I am being harsh and should feel positive that 71% of respondents use analytics at all, but this is an area where I believe marketers should invest more time and effort.
At the very least, you can learn more about your users and be able to report on the efficacy of various marketing initiatives, but analytics can tell you a lot about how users are engaging with your site and having the confidence to undertake some more detailed analysis and exploring conversion rate optimisation will help you make more of the traffic coming to your site.
4) Do you actively invest in marketing your website?
Again, an encouraging sign and I was a little surprised to see that 59% of respondents actively invested in the marketing of their websites.
Yes, it remains amazing that some websites are built with no consideration of extracting the maximum value from them and having 41% of respondents say that there is no resource to promote their sites is still fairly high, but I was pleased to see that marketers are actively marketing their sites and would expect to see this percentage increase.
Previous research that we carried out revealed a direct correlation between investing in marketing and satisfaction levels and I think this survey supported this notion.
5) Have you ever heard of Inbound Marketing?
A slightly cheeky question to finish as it was one that I was interested on a personal level.
We have called ourselves an inbound marketing agency for a couple of years now but I think it is fair to say that it far from a mainstream term. I wasn’t expecting anything other than the result above, but it shows that awareness of inbound marketing remains an uphill struggle and marketers are still much happier to talk about SEO and rankings when discussing digital marketing.
It is largely a semantic issue as many organisations are practicing inbound marketing without necessarily realising it. If you appreciate the value of good content and earning the attention of your target audience, you are singing from our hymn sheet. If you are not, then you are always very welcome to come and have a chat / coffee with us as we would love to help so please get in touch.
I hope the survey is of interest and thank you very much, once again, to everyone who helped by sharing their thoughts.