Archive | 五月, 2012

Infographic: Top Performing Payment Gateway APIs – Is the Most Popular Gateway the Fastest?

22 五月

To anyone who’s shopped online lately, it’s no secret that more and more commerce is done via payment gateways such as PayPal, Authorize.netStripe.com and Checkout from Google. One of our largest customer segments is eCommerce and we happen to collect not only performance data about these customers’ custom apps, but we also report on the performance of their connections to payment gateways. And while we are agnostic about which payment solutions people use, we thought these customers might benefit from seeing just how well the top payment gateways are performing in the context of overall application performance. So we put together a graphic display that sheds some light on which gateways are the most popular and how they are performing within our customers’ app environments.

In a nutshell, according to the performance snapshot we took across our 21K accounts, the most popular gateway isn’t necessarily the fastest…

WordPress Wednesday: 10 Plugins You Can’t Live Without

17 五月

In addition to all of the ways that a WordPress site can be personalized, however, it is really the numerous plugins that can be added for extra functionality that may be the driving force behind this publishing platform.

When it comes to content marketing, there are more than a few plugins that you simply cannot live without. Here are 10 selections that should always deserve consideration:

Gravity Forms
This plugin is a highly intuitive, easy-to-use way to create custom forms for your website. From simple contact forms to complex product customization and ordering, Gravity Forms have you covered. Just select your fields, configure your options and embed the form in your site and you’re ready to go.

Google XML Sitemaps
This innocuous little plugin is incredibly valuable. Once it is installed, it generates a complete XML sitemap for your blog, allowing search engines to more easily and thoroughly index your site. This allows all search engines to have a more complete view of your site and more easily retrieve its content. The plugin also notifies the search engines when new content is added, ensuring that your content appears in search results more quickly and accurately.

Revision Control
Thus plugin adds some extra functionality to the revision protocols already in place within WordPress. For each page and post, you can control exactly how many revisions are saved, via enabling, disabling and limiting controls. It also allows you to delete specific saved revisions. Simple, but powerful.

Scribe SEO
This incredibly well-designed and easily integrated plugin allows you to more easily create high-quality content for your site that adheres to the highest standard of SEO. Based on the content that you provide, this plugin suggests the best keywords and tweaks to enhance its SEO efficacy, helping you develop link relationships with other influential sites and social media sources.

Social Metrics
This free plugin allows you to monitor social media traffic on your site. Once it is installed, the plugin allows you to see how many times your content has been shared across various social media outlets, including Facebook, Twitter, Google + and LinkedIn. You are able to see how your content is shared, and share your content more effectively right from the Social Metrics dashboard.

W3 Total Cache
Used and trusted by many heavily trafficked sites, this plugin increases your website’s performance. It more completely caches your site, ensuring that your theme loads faster, the server performs more effectively, and your Google Page Speed is vastly improved.

Backup Buddy
This great plugin allows you to completely back up your WordPress site, including all customizations, themes and plugins, as well as your content. Once safely stored in a location of your choosing, restoring your site to the most recent save is a breeze. It also allows for incredibly easy migration of your site. Setting regular, automated backups means you don’t even have to remember saving your site at regular intervals to keep your backup up to date.

WP-Optimize
A simple and effective database-optimization tool. This plugin allows you to easily remove spam comments, post revisions and other bits of unnecessary data. It also comes in a variety of languages, which is a plus.

Yoast Breadcrumbs
This clever plugin allows you to add SEO breadcrumbs to your themes. Breadcrumbs allow your readers to navigate more easily between pages, categories and posts on your site. In addition to easier navigation, breadcrumbs also make the structure of your site more transparent for readers.

Yoast SEO
This powerful plugin may be the most complete SEO package available for WordPress users. Functions include XML sitemaps, content analysis, meta descriptions and a whole host of other, fully customizable options. If you need more, there are also several add-on modules available.

About the author: Matt Goulart is the founder of and lead consultant at Webstar Content, and can be reached at Matt@webstartcontent.com.

By: http://www.websitemagazine.com/content/blogs/posts/archive/2012/04/25/wordpress-wednesday-10-plugins-you-can-t-live-without.aspx?utm_source=newsletter&utm_medium=email&utm_campaign=newsletter

Infographic: Social Media Statistics For 2012

16 五月

It was a huge year for Social Media and here is a great infographic that rounds up the key Social Media Statistics to kickoff 2012. It’s pretty impressive to see that Facebook has grown to more than 800 million active users, adding more than 200 million in a single year. Twitter now has 100 million active users and LinkedIn has over 64 million users in North America alone.

A few interesting take outs for social media statistics in 2012:

Facebook Statistics 2012:

  • An average Facebook user has 130 friends and likes 80 pages
  • 56% of consumer say that they are more likely recommend a brand after becoming a fan
  • Each week on Facebook more than 3.5 billion pieces of content are shared

Twitter Statistics 2012:

  • 34% of marketers have generated leads using Twitter
  • 55% of Twitter users access the platform via their mobile

General Social Media Statistics 2012:

  • 30% of B2B marketers are spending million of dollars each year on social media marketing
  • Nearly 30% of these users are not tracking the impact of this marketing
  • 20% of Google searches each day have never been searched for before
  • Out of the 6 billion people on the planet 4.8 billion have a mobile and only 4.2 billion own a toothbrush

Check out more social media statistics for 2012 below in the full infographic, via Mediabistro.

Social Media Statistics 2012

By: http://www.digitalbuzzblog.com/social-media-statistics-stats-2012-infographic/

8 Hot Media Trends You Need to Know

15 五月

When a week’s vacation can leave us behind on social media trends, early adoption becomes more about pattern recognition than bandwagon jumping.

Mediaphiles dismissed Foursquare as a toy, until it suddenly owned the geo layer. Internet junkies took afternoon naps and missed Pinterest’s leap to #3 in social networking. Mom couldn’t log into Hotmail; now she owns Farmville. All of these trends were forecast well before their big breaks, largely due to the astute eyes of early adopters who are ready to add new and fresh tools to their media-consuming arsenal.

Here are eight media trends we’re tracking right now. Some are right on the cusp of becoming mainstream and others still have a bit to cook before breaking the surface. What patterns are you observing in the media world and what do you think will be the next big thing? Let us know in the comments below.


1. Targeted, Geo-Mobile Coupons


When Foursquare started garnering press coverage in 2009, co-founder Dennis Crowley confessed his dream was to one day know users well enough to target smart coupons on the fly. He wanted to send push notifications that essentially said, “We know you like pizza, and it’s dinner time right now. Pizza Place X, two blocks away, has a special.”

That day has finally come. With 1.5 billion check-ins, 750 thousand merchants, 20 million users and millions of geo-tagged tips, Foursquare now has the ability to deliver hyper-relevant coupons to its users. I just started getting them and they’ve been surprisingly accurate.

LevelUp and other mobile services are digifying the in-person coupon space as well. We expect this field to mature rapidly now that geodata infrastructure is in place and half of all U.S. mobile phones are smartphones.


2. Audio Watermarking


Technology for embedding subliminal signals in audio — digital sound waves humans cannot consciously detect — is being used to track data and connect digital devices in increasingly clever ways. New York-based startup Sonic Notify, for example, built technology that allows television shows such as Bravo’s Top Chef to invisibly activate a viewer’s smartphone or tablet with related content while watching.

As audio watermarking becomes more mainstream (and consumers acclimate to the idea), opportunities for mobile content integration at events and retail stores will arise faster than you can play a Beatles record backwards.


3. Passive Location-Based Networking


According to social media data collected by Tracx, the top 3 buzziest startups at SXSW 2012 were all in-person networking apps: Highlight, Glancee, and Sonar.

Highlight was the most popular by far, gaining 300% more buzz than any of its peers. Its hook is that it’s completely passive: Users allow the app to track their locations throughout the day, then when other Highlight users (friends, potential connections) are nearby, it shows both parties the nearby user’s info.

Though buzz was high, the big question around this trend is whether the utility of such apps will outweigh the privacy concerns (and battery drain). There’s certainly competition in the space, so we’re likely to see a lot of movement around this concept this year.


4. Motion Tracking and Facial Recognition for Intention Data


CBS‘s hit series Person of Interest called this one last September. As facial recognition and motion tracking tech becomes more accurate and less expensive, the ability to digitally divine real-world intent is coming into our grasp.

Interpublic Group, for example, has a laboratory in Manhattan where Xbox Kinects, flatscreens and fake grocery aisles come together for some serious spying. When you pick up a box of Pop Tarts, the motion sensors track your face to see if you’re smiling or frowning about what you see. Screens then output data on how long you’ve lingered in front of a particular product, and ads trigger based on your gender (which cameras infer) and what objects you’re touching.

All this will help product marketers deliver better experiences. Once we get past the “creep-out phase,” consumers will likely start expecting — and appreciating — such personalization in their everyday shopping ventures.


5. Automatic Social Media-Activated Discounts


Handing a coupon to the waiter after a meal can be embarrassing for customers and time-consuming for employees. American Express has figured out how to bypass both challenges using social media.

The credit card company recently launched Twitter and Foursquare integrations that allow cardholders to sync their plastic with a social account, then take advantage of in-store coupons with no more effort than a tweet or check-in.

For example, many Foursquare locations have “$5 Off” AmEx specials. If a user checks into a location with the special and uses an AmEx card, the store’s credit card machine pings AmEx, which verifies check-in with Foursquare and then credits $5 to the user’s card.


6. Brands Building Publications and Entertainment Channels


“We’re all publishers” is a trite phrase by now, but big brands are starting to take the mantra seriously. With budgets behind them and no advertising to worry about, companies are building media properties meant to compete with TV stations and magazines.

Red Bull’s homepage, for example, looks like an action-sports news site. The company pumps out professional-grade news articles, feature stories and videos each day, pushing them to social marketing channels such as Facebook and Twitter. This fuels the company’s social media accounts with content and points followers back to Red Bull’s site, rather than elsewhere on the Internet.

Fashion companies are especially keen on building publications to compete with traditional media. Several have even reported that building entire publications is no more expensive than advertising. A look at the sites of Tory Burch and Kate Spade show where these brands are investing their efforts.


7. TV on the Internet


The Thursday Night TV lineup’s days are numbered.

Barry Diller, the media mogul who greenlit The Simpsons while running Fox in the ’80s, thinks broadcast television is the next big disruption in media. As we’ve seen with music, Internet users want to consume individual pieces of content — tracks, not albums; episodes, not box sets. They want to pick and choose, and they want their content online, not attached to a cable TV plan.

Diller’s latest project, Aereo, puts live broadcast TV on the Internet. It’s the next step to cutting the coaxial cable entirely.


8. Mobile, Immersive Reality


Digital technology allows us to be in one place while experiencing another. Skype and FaceTime connect people across the world, in person. The next evolution of this is immersive video and augmented reality.

Google is developing augmented reality glasses, which would enable wearers to view data layered over real life. A startup called Condition One makes iPad video apps that let the tablet holder move around a faraway scene, like a battlefield. There’s even R&D happening to create video-enabled contact lenses.

Tron, The Terminator and The Matrix, here we come.

By: http://mashable.com/2012/04/19/hot-media-trends/

Google Mobile Playbook

1 五月

http://www.themobileplaybook.com/#/cover

Interest in Pinterest Reaches a Fever Pitch [INFOGRAPHIC]

1 五月

Could Pinterest be the silver bullet for retailers on social media?  Pinterest is clearly resonating with online consumers in a big way.  To put it simply, customers who find a product via Pinterest are more likely to purchase it than those who find the product via other social networks.

SEE ALSO: 10 Video Tips for Businesses on PinterestPinterest is hot. In fact, in March 2012 the site served up 2.3 billion page impressions to over 4 million unique visitors a day.

Who are these people? Why do Pinterest users respond so strongly to products that are pinned? This infographic from Tamba breaks down the stats, explaining why Pinterest is so powerful with its consumption-friendly audience.

By: http://mashable.com/2012/04/29/pinterest-interest/

支付產業聚焦 – 你知道 PayPal 怎麼賺錢嗎?

1 五月

發表於 <!––><!––> TechOrange

台灣網路以及 App 創業市場最近相當火紅,但是我自己覺得支付產業這個網路世界中的利潤高規模大的項目好像是大家相對不熟悉的一環,跟一些人聊過後我發現理由大都是因為金融相關東西容易讓人有距離感,因為金融產品都會跟法規有所牽扯相當麻煩,不然就是大家都習慣用現有的支付選擇,信用卡交易以及超商付款很安全很方便,何必去想什麼創新呢?但事實上支付產業在世界各地不斷地有著破壞式的創新,讓網路跟行動支付的風險更小成本更低,在科技使用發達的台灣絕對也有著不可小看的潛力;所以我決定開始一系列的文章介紹現在網路以及行動支付產業在全世界一些有名的案例,希望可以提供大家一些想法,待法規更趨成熟後能有更多創業的資源以及人才投入到這個領域!今天就讓我們從全球網路支付龍頭 – PayPal 開始吧!

相信大家都對於 PayPal 不陌生,用 PayPal 可以免除輸入信用卡號碼的麻煩,也可以避免信用卡資料外流的風險,但是大家知道 PayPal 到底是怎麼賺錢嗎?要解答這個問題錢,讓我們先看看金流是怎麼在這個平台上運作的,說穿了 PayPal 是一個結合了電子金流 (Payment Gateway) 以及電子錢包 (e-wallet) 的平台,電子金流連結了信用卡交易系統以及銀行清算系統,資金可以透過這兩個管道進到 PayPal 的銀行帳戶,不管你選擇先儲值在自己的帳戶中,還是將自己帳戶連結到一個信用卡號碼或者銀行帳戶,PayPal 最後都會把這筆金額轉換成電子貨幣的形式儲存在你的電子錢包裡。但是我們要記得當你使用信用卡交易的時候,銀行在把錢清算給 PayPal 時照樣會扣除一筆手續費,所以當你用信卡交易 100 元, PayPal 雖然在你帳戶顯示 100 元,但是實際上可能只收到了98 元;但是稍後當你把這 100 元拿去商家交易的時候,PayPal 若是跟商家收高於 2 元,那他就可以在這個過程中創造利潤,最後再扣掉壞帳損失 (例如帳戶被盜用等) 就會是它的毛利。下面我簡短介紹一下 PayPal 在這三個項目中做了哪些事情去增加它的毛利

1. 交易收入 (Take Rate):除了提高跟商家的收費以外,跨國交易所產生的手續費用以及外匯是另外一個很主要的收入來源,當全世界更多消費者以及商家加入 PayPal ,它就能夠創造更多跨國交易,這也是為什麼 PayPal 很積極地在國際上布局去創造網路效應,讓更多人用 PayPal 在全世界的網路商家都能消費。

2. 交易資金成本 (Transaction Expense):相對於信用卡交易,銀行轉帳其實是相對便宜的,所以你在各個國家都會發現 PayPal 很努力地在跟使用者推銷將 PayPal 帳號連接到銀行帳號,進而大幅降低它的交易資金成本,我自己在英國的 PayPal 帳戶就是直接連接到英國銀行帳戶,透過當地的即時清算系統 PayPal 可以在交易發生的同時間從我的銀行帳戶扣款, 一個 100 英鎊的交易成本瞬間從 1.25 英鎊降到 0.2 英鎊以下,直接就差了 1%。

3. 壞帳損失 (Loss Rate):大家也許不知道  PayPal 在剛起飛的時候,單月的壞帳金額曾經高達 100 萬美元, 創辦人 Max Levchin 當時傾全力針對交易資料做了側底分析後才打造了 PayPal 防盜以及防詐欺交易的系統,這套系統很少被提及,因為 PayPal 了解這個系統是一間支付公司能否成功的關鍵,所以他們盡可能不去洩漏任何關於他們在這各方面的知識以及經驗,也從來沒有申請專利,因為申請專利你就得把所有的資料公諸於世。

讓我們看一下PayPal Q1 2012 財報第 8 頁,你就可以看到這三個數字是 PayPal 商業模式中最重要的三個元素,也是他們每一季財報上的關鍵數字;PayPal 在過去五季中展現了他們優良的經營績效 – 交易收入不斷向上、交易資金成本持續向下、壞帳損失幾乎是持平,所以在單季交易金額從 280 億美元攀升到 330 億美元的過程中,毛利率盡然也能夠同時向上攀升,怪不得財報公布當天 eBay 的股價跳升超過 10 個百分點,因為這些數字證明了 PayPal 這個平台有能力在世界各個市場持續擴張並維持健全的投資報酬率,這絕對是其他競爭者短時間很難複製以及挑戰的。

另外這也是為什麼 PayPal 有著進軍實體通路的本錢;面對大型連鎖通路, PayPal 比起銀行更有議價的空間,當銀行服務費用大都得從 1.5% 談起的時候,PayPal 有著相對低的交易資金成本,面對小型商家的時候, PayPal Here 可以將它龐大的網路使用者帶到零售通路,提供一個更便捷且快速的交易選擇,這個戰場界線的模糊又再次地證明真正的贏家必須創造一個「實體 + 網路 + 行動」三個領域合一的消費者體驗,接下來我們應該可以看到 PayPal 更積極地在所有的領域全面開戰,因為當人們的生活以及消費隨著科技改變,最需要被解決的就是支付的問題,PayPal 應該比誰都清楚。

後記:有興趣的人可以想想 PayPal 怎麼進軍 B2B 支付市場去搶銀行的飯碗,以及 PayPal 如何在手機內應用交易 (In-app purchasing) 跟 Google、Apple 以及 Amazon 競爭,有些我會在之後的文章提到。

By: http://www.appguru.com.tw/appguru/blog/6729/payment-industry-focused-you-know-that-paypal-is-how-to-make-money-you