Google Apps or Microsoft Office? Survey argues which cloud office is best for your business

If you’ve ever talked to an acquaintance about what technology they use at their place of work, then this might be the article for you: a survey from BetterCloud has found the benefits of Google Apps and Microsoft Office for organisations of all sizes.

The report argues there is a “clear trend” for larger organisations to run Office 365 as opposed to Google Apps – Office 365-based organisations are more than four times larger and five years older on average, while companies who run Office 365 have IT teams five times the size of their Google counterparts.

As befitting smaller businesses, more Google Apps implementations are done in one go. More than two thirds (68%) of Google Apps organisations roll out at once, compared with 62% of Office 365 respondents who opt for a hybrid deployment strategy. This is not a surprise, according to the report authors, citing Google’s push for organisations to undergo transformational change – rolling out Google Apps over the course of a weekend, or across several weekends.

“When looking at all organisations, the deployment strategy for Office 365 organisations is essentially the exact opposite of those deploying Google Apps,” the report notes, adding: “Office 365 organisations are easing into the transition, allowing employees to choose their preferred working style, rather than abruptly shifting to a cloud-only workplace,” it adds.

Organisations utilising Google report increased collaboration levels (84%) when compared with Microsoft (72%), while running Google Apps also means a greater likelihood of cost savings. Organisations using the search giant’s cloud office experiences cost savings of 41% on average, while for Office 365 companies that number drops to 27%.

For firms which utilise more than 50% of applications, the most popular apps for Google were Gmail, Calendar and Drive, while for Office 365 the most popular apps were all desktop – Word, Excel and Outlook. Yet there’s a caveat, with BetterCloud noting the importance of Office 365’s nascent nature, the more likely older workforce at Office 365 organisations, and the hybrid approach in moving to the cloud.

As a result, BetterCloud gives a hypothetical description of a Google Apps and Microsoft Office 365 customer based on their data. The average company which uses Google was a SaaS company founded in 2010, with 110 employees, three in IT, with a high percentage of millennial workforce.

For Office 365, it’s more likely to be a company founded in 1982, with complex on-premises infrastructure after 30 years of growth. While they have moved some infrastructure to the cloud, it’s not fully there yet, although the company is experiencing productivity and collaboration gains. None of the larger enterprises surveyed – 5000 or more employees – run 100% of their IT in the cloud, either from Microsoft or Google.

“The role of IT is evolving,” the report concludes. “IT admins aren’t sitting back and waiting to fix what breaks any longer; now, with the benefit of the cloud, they’re given more opportunity – and time – to spend on getting things done proactively.”

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The Power of Data

Fundamental data technologies driving businesses have changed over the past decade, what capabilities will they be opening up over the next decade? We find out.

Key figures for mobile commerce in Europe revealed

Europeans are set to spend about 45 billion euros via mobile devices in 2015, an increase of 88.7% on 23.8 billion euros in 2014. PC spending on the other hand, will grow by just 6%. In Europe, 12% of all online purchases has happened through mobile devices.

These figures come from the latest research by RetailMeNot, a global marketplace for digital offers. It compared mobile shopping in Europe with mcommerce in North America. It seems that the adoption of smartphones is still higher in the United States, where 69% has a smartphone. In Europe the average is slightly lower with 60%. Of course, there are some differences between European countries. For example, in Poland just 42% of the population has a smartphone, while in Sweden three in four inhabitants own one.


Visiting ecommerce websites
Another thing where the US scores better than Europe is in the field of visiting ecommerce websites. In the US 74% of the users surveyed have visited a retail website within the previous three months, while in Europe on average only 46% did. This is of course due to the fact Europe consists of countries where there are still few people who shop online. In Italy for example only 15% of its inhabitants visited an ecommerce website, while Poland (24%) and Spain (28%) achieve only slightly better.


Preferred devices for online shopping

The PC is still the most preferred device for shopping online. This applies to both the people in Europe and the US. From the eight European countries surveyed, only the United Kingdom, Germany and, to a lesser extent, Sweden can keep up with the USA, where 10% of transactions happened by smartphone and 9% happened by tablet in 2014.


Mobile commerce in Europe
RetailMeNot also looked at the share of spend per device in 2014 and forecasted how this would develop in 2015. In the US, 182.1 billion euros were spent online using a desktop computer, while online spending on a mobile accounted for 41.9 billion euros. While desktop spending is expected to increase little, mobile spending will increase by 63% in 2015.

In Europe, 132.5 billion euros were spent on a desktop computer, while this will probably grow to 140.5 billion euros in 2015. And mobile spending accounted for 23.8 billion euros last year, but is expected to increase by 88.7% to 44.9 billion euros. Again it shows that the UK, Germany and France are the major ecommerce players in Europe, as they together are set to account for 87% of all mobile spending in Europe in 2015.


RetailMeNot also focused on the forecasted growth for mcommerce in Europe. It shows that in Europe the biggest growth can be found in Poland (smartphone: +100%, tablet: +121%), Spain (smartphone: +73%, tablet: +132%) and Germany (smartphone: +108%, tablet: +96%)


RetailMeNot based its infographic on a report carried out by the Centre for Retail Research in January 2015. The study analyzes online retailes sales in 2013 to 2015 in France, Germany, Italy, the Netherlands, Poland, Spain, Sweden, the UK, Canada and the US.

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Το τραπεζικό μέλλον είναι mobile (infographic)

Η JP Morgan Chase & Co δημοσίευσε πρόσφατα ένα ενδιαφέρον infographic που δείχνει τις τάσεις στον τραπεζικό κλάδο. Με το πλήθος των τραπεζικών εφαρμογών που υπάρχουν, σίγουρα δεν αποτελεί έκπληξη η άνοδος και η αύξηση της διείσδυσης του digital banking. Οι πελάτες αγαπούν την ευκολία διαχείρισης των οικονομικών τους και εκτέλεσης των τραπεζικών συναλλαγών μέσα από το web, το κινητό ή/και το ATM. Οπότε δεν αποτελεί έκπληξη η άνοδος και η αύξηση της διείσδυσης του mobile στο banking.

Ενδιαφέρον, επίσης, παρουσιάζει το που και σε ποιες καταστάσεις προτιμούν να χρησιμοποιούν οι πελάτες τις εφαρμογές για mobile. Τέλος, οι συνήθειες των Millennials είναι αυτές που καθορίζουν σε μεγάλο βαθμό τις εξελίξεις στο χώρο αφού το 67% εξ αυτών χρησιμοποιεί τις mobile εφαρμογές (apps) για τις τραπεζικές συναλλαγές.

Να σημειώσουμε πως η έρευνα της JP Morgan Chase & C0 αφορά στους καταναλωτές των ΗΠΑ και έχει συγκεντρώσει στοιχεία κατά τα δύο τελευταία χρόνια.

Το Infographic της JP Morgan Chase & Co


Πηγή – Source:


Mobile Commerce To Sharply Increase by 2018

According to leading research company Juniper Research, mobile devices, which include tablets, are going to push retail purchases up to $707bn by 2018, which relates to £413bn! To give an idea in percentage terms that is an astonishing 30% of retail spending online. This is a huge jump as last year this figure was much smaller, half in fact, 15% of ecommerce spend was accounted for by mcommerce – $182bn.

Major retailers are now focusing their strategies for the mobile user and this is what Juniper believe is going to be driving the huge surge in retail purchases over mobile devices. Analysts have also pointed out though, that these retailers need to duplicate the focus on the mobile user in store too, allowing for price comparison and other features in store.

“This means that not only is the retailer proactively offering the consumer the opportunity to price check in-store, but that the purchase can be made immediately, without having to queue elsewhere in the store,” said report author Windsor Holden

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Finnish postal service tests drone to deliver online purchases

The Finnish postal service Posti Group had run some tests with drones for parcel delivery. At the beginning of this month, the postal company let drones fly while transporting parcels between mainland Helsinki and Suomenlinna, an island fortress about five kilometers from the Finnish capital.

Posti Group is testing ways to make online shopping quicker and better for both sender and recipient. The test with drones is just one of those ways. The Finnish postal service told Reuters it’s the first company in Europe to experiment with drones for mail delivery in an urban area, with a flight path that is partially obstructed. Posti started the four-day test on September 2, dispatching parcels weighing up to three kilograms.

The first drone that was part of the experiment arrived some distance from the landing zone. The drone pilot chose to modify the flight trajectory because of the wind. According to Jukka Rosenberg, senior vice president of parcel and logistics services, it could take them two or three years before they have everything in place. Partly because of the regulations that are required.

Finnish government promotes intelligent automation
The parcel carried by Posti’s drone was handed to the Finnish Minister of Transport and Communications. Her department drafted a program to promote intelligent automation, so it seems appropriate she was present during the test flight.

Posti Group is a Finnish company that focuses on postal, logistics, ecommerce and financial process services. It has operations in eleven country and handled 32.6 million parcels last year.

Πηγή – Source:


European consumers spent €179.7 billion online last year

Consumers in twelve major European countries have spent a total of nearly 180 billion euros while shopping online last year. This is 10 billion euros more than in the previous year. Especially, ecommerce between countries – both within and outside Europe – is on the rise.

PostNord concludes this in its ‘E-Commerce in Europe‘ report. It surveyed over 11,000 consumers in Belgium, Denmark, Finland, France, Italy, the Netherlands, Norway, Poland, Spain, the United Kingdom, Sweden and Germany. The Nordic postal company found out that an increasing number of Europeans shop online regularly and spend on average more than they have before.

Online spendings in Europe

And on top of that, cross-border ecommerce is getting more popular. Compared to last year, nearly 11 million more Europeans shopped online from abroad at least once. This kind of shopping is most popular in the Nordics, where 70 percent of consumers did this. That’s more than the share of consumers in the United Kingdom (58 percent) and Germany (53 percent) who shopped at foreign ecommerce sites.

Cross-border ecommerce in Europe

No longer wary of buying from other countries
Olof Källgren, who is the market information manager at PostNord company Direct Link, has an explanation for this. “We are no longer wary of buying from other countries. National borders have loosened up and, today, many of us feel that it’s just as natural to shop online as in a physical store”, he says. “Consumers are looking for a wider range of products, more brands, better offers and lower prices. They have access to all of this when they shop from abroad.”

Average spending highest in the UK
PostNord checked what the consumers in the surveyed countries spent online and it found out that those in the United Kingdom spent an average of 1,028 euros per person on online purchases. This is by far the highest figure in the survey. For comparison: in the Nordics consumers spent an average of 549 euros online and in Italy this was even lower, with 295 euros per person.

Most popular product categories in Europe
In all European markets, the most popular product categories are clothing and footwear, consumer electronics and books. But online grocery shopping is on a rise, especially in the United Kingdom. In the two other major European ecommerce markets, those of Germany and France, purchasing food online is also popular. Upcoming popular product categories are sport and leisure (particularly in the Netherlands) and beauty products.

In most surveyed markets, debits and credit cards are the most popular online payment method. In large parts of Europe, with the exception of the Nordics and Belgium, PayPal and similar payment solutions are also popular.

More interesting statistics can be found in the report, which can be downloaded for free.

An overview of online spending in Europe

Πηγή – Source:


How Do I Build a Business Plan? (Infographic)

You have a powerful idea for the next big thing, but before you sell it to anyone, you have to get it all down on paper. It’s time to make a business plan.

How do you know if you’re headed in the right direction? Washington State University created an infographic that provides 10 guidelines to help prospective entrepreneurs organize their thoughts and wow potential investors.

The infographic details some major questions that aspiring CEOS need to ask themselves like, what problem is my business going to solve, what’s my company’s mission, and what do we do better than anyone else in the market?

But you aren’t quite done yet. A thorough business plan includes who your target demographic is, the conditions of the market you’re entering into and accounts for worst-case scenarios. And of course, there’s the money: how much you need to get going, and where it’s going to come from once your business is up and running.

Related: A Business Plan for the Startup Economy

For more information, like how much funding you’ll need before applying for a small business loan (that’s 30 percent), check out the infographic below.


Source – Πηγή:

By Nina Zipkin

Selling Products Online? How to Build a Perfect Checkout Page (Infographic)

Imagine going to Target, filling your cart with products, then ditching it by the door and walking out empty-handed. That’s what ecommerce shoppers do more often than not. Unfortunately for Internet merchants, most are Looky Lous who never actually buy what they put in their carts.

This year alone, online shopping cart ditchers will bail on some $4 trillion dollars worth of potential purchases. The proof is in the virtual wasteland of deserted online shopping carts. A staggering estimated 69 percent of them get abandoned, according to the Baymard Institute, kicking e-tailers where it hurts.

Why do so many online shoppers leave without paying? Research points to everyday frustrations that most of us can relate to — unexpected shipping costs, payment security concerns and, yuck, the hassle of having to create yet another new user account. And the list goes on.

Related: The Candy Trigger By The Checkout Line (And Why We Fail With New Habits)

To fight back, to nudge shoppers to purchase what they put in their carts, eliminate the aggravations that send send them packing in the first place. Your best bet is to perfect your checkout page. How? Make it as quick and easy as possible for existing customers to login and pay, and for new ones to checkout as guests. Offer multiple shipping options and be upfront about the costs. Reassure shoppers and demonstrate how safe your payment processing is.

For more quick tips on how to craft, test and refine an effective checkout page, take a look at the infographic below by VWO, a Delhi, India-based provider of A/B testing software for online marketers.


Source – Πηγή:

By Kim Lachance Shandrow

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