February 19, 2010, 12:00 AM

Online consumers respond to images and each other, new survey finds

Online companies find rich media and social media to be the most effective marketing features, according to new research from Adobe Systems Inc.

Zak Stambor

Managing Editor


Online companies find rich media and social media to be the most effective web marketing features, according to new research from Adobe Systems Inc.

The global survey of 546 retailers, agencies, high-tech companies, media and enterprises that sell online also found mobile and personalization programs have the highest planned growth rates over the next year. That could be because less than 10% of companies responding have deployed such features, according to Adobe, which will be exhibiting at the Internet Retailer Conference & Exhibition 2010.

Following are percentage of respondents that said a feature was an effective marketing tool:

  • Product tours or multimedia viewing, which combine guided spin, zoom imagery, videos or animations with copy, 36%
  • Visual filtering and advanced search on product features including size, color, and price, 33%
  • User comments and reviews, 32%
  • Search landing pages, 32%
  • Product comparisons, 28%
  • Zoom, 28%.


The top five features currently used by the respondents include: branded social community pages on networks such as Facebook, MySpace and Twitter (33%), blogs (32%), audio (26%), RSS (25%), and dynamic displays, such as banner, carousel, tabbed and grid views (25%).


75% of all respondents say they will be undertaking projects to improve customer experience within the coming year. Among the features that retailers plan to add are:

  • Interactive catalogs, 30%
  • Blogs, 26%
  • Geolocation and personalization engines, 25%
  • Videos for merchandising, advertising, and demonstration, 24%
  • Mobile application that offers consumers ads, promotions and bar-coded coupons, 23%
  • Mobile commerce application, 19%


“Consumers want more than the traditional one-size-fits-all web experience,” says Doug Mack, vice president and general manager of Rich Media Solutions at Adobe. “They want to be heard and understood online, which is why 75% of the survey respondents say they are planning attention-grabbing innovations over the next twelve months to provide more interactive and personalized experiences.”


Adobe Systems’ Adobe Scene7 offers rich media services for such companies as QVC Inc., Macy`s Inc. and Amazon.com Inc.



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