// More choice for .nz domain name

In one week exactly your options for a second level domain name are set to change, for the good.

Most of us are familiar with second level domain names such as .co.nz, .govt.nz or org.nz, but in a week’s time @ 1pm on September 30 these domains will become voluntary.

What does this all mean for your own NZ domain name or brand?

From September 30, people will have more choice when selecting a .nz domain name. We’ll start to see shorter .nz names. For an example littlegiant.nz. Not only are these domains simpler, they are also shorter and will hopefully be more representative.

Some of you may be freaking out like we did – worried someone else might steal our .nz domain name! We were thankfully, wrong. The DNC is allowing people who already have a .nz domain know about the change through anyname.nz – but more importantly, they are also giving you the chance to have first dibs. If you are after a preferential reservation or registration it is important that you speak to your domain name provider and visit the anyname.nz website to check out the status of your domain name. Various statuses dictate the different options available to you.

I’ve checked the status of my existing domain name, but what does it mean?

Will be available – you can try and register the shorter version of the name on a ‘first-come, first-served’ basis from 1pm, 30 September 2014.

Will be PRR (Preferential Registration or Reservation) – you can register or reserve the shorter version of your name before anyone else.

Will be conflicted – to get the shorter version of your name you’ll need to go through a ‘conflict’ process from 1pm, 30 September.

Will be prohibited – No-one is able to register the shorter version of the domain name.

I don’t have an existing.nz name, but want one?

For those of you that don’t have a registered .nz domain name this change will increase the choices you have available. This a great opportunity for anyone who wants to establish an online brand presence to get the .nz domain name they want.

REMEMBER: The go-live date for the change is 1pm, 30 September 2014 (NZDT). From that date, you’ll will be able to register or reserve the new shorter .nz domain names. So do your homework, and be one of those ‘first-in, first-served’.

By Mike Little

// The power of the subject line

How many unread e-mails do you have in your inbox? 200? 600? Or more….

Every day we are bombarded with countless e-mails, most of them left unopened – we simply do not have the time to tend to each and every one. So the question is, what can you change to ensure that your e-mail is opened??

Your subject line. It’s the first, and often the last impression on your users. It’s important that your email grabs the attention of your subscribers, before anyone else!

So how do we create an effective subject line? Here are a few key rules –

Personalization – they say we enjoy the sound of our own voice? The same goes for our name. Studies show that personally addressed subject lines are winners. Another option – throw in a personal pronoun– “we”, “you” or “your”, make your reader feel “special”.

Timely – subject lines that feature dates or urgency tend to perform better than those that don’t. Who wants to miss out on a deal? Fear of missing out. It’s a thing, and it’s persuasive.

Be exciting. It goes without saying, the more exciting your subject line is, the more likely it is your reader will open and read the e-mail.

Simplicity – there is a lot to be said for minimalism. Users want you to be clear and concise in your subject line. Ultra-minimalist one-word subject lines can prove effective.

Need to test how effective your subject line is? Why not run an experiment. One of the most common ways to test an experiment is to run an A/B split test. A/B split testing works by sending two emails with varying subject lines to a sample % of your database. From the response you can determine the higher performing subject line, ensuring a higher likelihood that your email is opened. E-mail marketing service providers such as Campaign monitor and MailChimp offer this as a standard part of their service.

See here –



When scrolling through an e-mail inbox, enticing your subscribers to read further isn’t an easy task, a user’s ability to delete or ignore an e-mail however is. So when we are competing endlessly for the attention of e-mail subscribers’ one little word in a subject line really can make all the difference.

By Mike Little

// Gmail advanced search tips

At Little Giant, Gmail and Google Business Apps are a large part of our day-to-day toolset. The search function within Gmail is a powerful tool, which can be enhanced even further with these boolean operators.

Advanced search, or boolean, operators are query words or symbols that enhance the search for email(s) within Gmail. Getting to grips with the most common of these operators will allow you to find the email you are looking for quickly and accurately.

Gmail now has an advanced search drop down panel (click the arrow on the right of the search box) with fields that help you search and the ability to choose a label to search within. However, knowing these advanced search operators will help you refine your search even further. You can use the search panel to start a search, once you click the search button your chosen search will be shown as a boolean search in the search box, then use the terms below to refine it further.

Common advanced operators:

Operator Action Example
from: Search for sender from:[email protected] Sent from Mark W
to: Search for recipient to:[email protected] Sent to Mark W
subject: Search in subject line subject:collaboration Contains “collaboration” in the subject

subject:collaboration from:[email protected] From Mark with “collaboration” in subject

” “ Search for exact phrase “tips on collaboration” Email contains the exact phrase “tips on collaboration”
OR Search using term “A” or “B” – OR must be uppercase collaboration OR document Contains the words “collaboration” or “document”

from:mark OR ian Sent from Mark or Ian

- Exclude terms from your search (use a hyphen) “collaboration” -office Email contains the term “collaboration” but not “office”
is:unread / read
Search for emails that are starred; read; or unreadSearch for chat messages from:mark is:unread Emails from Mark that are unread

is:chat from:ian Search for chat messages from Ian

( ) Group words that the email contains from:mark (collaboration OR document) Emails from Mark that contain “collaboration” or “document”

subject:(collaboration document) Emails that contain the terms “collaboration” and “document” in the subject

filename: Search an attachment by filename filename:plan subject:marketing Emails with an attachment including the word “plan” and a subject including “marketing”
Search for emails that have attachmentsSearch for emails with coloured stars from:mark has:attachment Emails from Mark with an attachment

has:purple-star “collaborate” Emails with a purple star that contain the term “collaborate”

cc:bcc: Search cc: and bcc: fields cc: [email protected] Emails copied to Mark W
in: Search within labels, inbox, trash etc subject:collaboration in:colleagues Emails that contain “collaboration” labelled as “colleagues”
By Mike Little

// Web Design – e-commerce and what you need to consider

Growth in e-commerce sales is huge, in 2013 e-commerce sales grew more than 14% from the previous year, far outpacing overall retail sales. Why is e-commerce so important for NZ business? Simple, it provides a level playing field… location is no longer a factor, NZ companies can now market and sell their goods to previously large and unreachable foreign markets.

What do NZ companies need to consider when investing in an e-commerce solution?


Good design isn’t just about nice looking aesthetics, it is about creating user pathways based on customer segmentation information to ensure a high portion of your traffic is converted into a lead / sale. The more efficient your E-commerce store is at turning a visitor into a sale the higher your return on digital marketing $.

Platform & CMS

Implementing a Content Management System (CMS) is an integral part of your e-Commerce business. It offers efficiency, control over site content, improved customer service and enhanced SEO (Search Engine Optimization) ensuring your business remains relevant. An e-commerce platform is a software technology solution that allows you to build storefronts, delivered either on the premise of your business or on the Cloud. Many of the large retailers are either looking at new platforms or replatforming in order to enhance and future proof their e-commerce and multichannel businesses.

Digital marketing

A website needs to go beyond a simple branding exercise. When designing digital marketing it is important to include a marketing strategy – without one you are left directionless. A digital marketing strategy outlines what your company wants to achieve in terms of gaining new customers or building deeper relationships with your existing ones. Without goals it is hard to predict the resources needed to establish a functioning site.

A cloud based business tool

Don’t think about your e-commerce solution as purely a “Online store” it is your cloud based business tool. With API’s you can connect your online store / website to many of your existing software tools, streamlining administration across CRM, Accounting, Inventory management and much more. Think big!

These are some brief but important points of a very complex and dynamic product. E-commerce is an exciting opportunity for many NZ business and a product Little Giant is extremely passionate about.


By Mike Little

// Wynyard Quarter regeneration – A vibrant future

WYN-Q-BLOG530x200Auckland’s waterfront is going through one of the largest urban regeneration’s in New Zealand, evolving from an inaccessible industrial port area to an impressive place where people can live and visit, be entertained and do business.

A lot has changed over the past few years. In 2011, the first stage of the Wynyard Quarter development opened providing new spaces and places next to the waters edge for your enjoyment.

Within the next few years the waterfront will continue to develop and grow with new sustainable places to live and spaces pleasing to the eye to help innovative businesses grow, right next to the vibrant and busy waterfront. Keep updated here:


By Mike Little