Last updated: Editor’s picks: The best of what made us think, laugh, and cry in 2021

Editor’s picks: The best of what made us think, laugh, and cry in 2021


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As we get ready to bid adieu to 2021, we thought it was a good time to look back on some of our favorite posts from the year. But choosing editor’s picks from so much great content wasn’t easy.

It’s been a blockbuster year for the site. We surpassed a million page views, validating our long-term thought leadership strategy.

Every day, we publish articles that shed light on key industry trends and provide thought-provoking, inspiring perspective.

We cover breaking news in the e-commerce world and highlight pressing social issues. We also entertain readers with humorous posts that draw a line between popular culture and corporate life. Throughout, we’ve tried to provide support as the pandemic continues to upend our lives.

So selecting just a handful of favorites was tricky. Here, we highlight a few posts that made us think, laugh out loud, and moved us to the point of tears.

Editor’s picks for 2021: Fake reviews, B2B marketing, and women’s equality

Thought leadership is all about shedding light on topics that make people think, or in some cases, re-think their assumptions. These kind of posts have staying power. Here are some of the best from 2021.

How to spot fake online reviews: The dark side of e-commerce

We can always count on top contributor Branwell Moffett to deliver. In this post, he sheds light on the real story behind many of those online reviews you see on Amazon and other online marketplaces. He delves into the murky world of paid, fake reviews and provides tips on how to spot them. Moffett also sounds the alarm about how damaging they are to customer trust, and calls on marketplaces to take action.

Your obsession with demand gen is going to kill your B2B marketing

When Amber Naslund speaks, you need to listen. The B2B marketing expert penned one of our favorite — and most-read posts of 2021.By questioning the emphasis on demand gen in B2B marketing, Naslund takes something of a revolutionary point of view. Instead, teams should focus on brand marketing to win customers, she argues.

Women’s Equality Day 2021: No glass ceiling in sight from the edge

The United States Congress declared August 26 as Women’s Equality Day in 1973, but more than 50 years later, the gender gap is as big as ever, as our very own Jenn Vande Zande demonstrated. Her post, filled with statistics and facts, provides a searing look at the state of women’s equality. Her call to action is straightforward: It’s time to actually drive change instead of just talking about it.

2021 news picks: GDPR fines, supply chain problems, Apple privacy changes

E-commerce, retail, and customer experience continued to grow and change rapidly in 2021. Here are some of the top news stories we covered.

GDPR fines skyrocket as regulators crack down on policy violations

For a few years now, experts have warned businesses that violating the European Union’s General Data Protection Regulation would cost them. Regulators got serious about enforcing the data privacy rules this year, imposing fines that topped $1.1 billion in the third quarter. Amazon has received the biggest GDPR fine to date ($876 million).

Global supply chain issues could be a real bummer this holiday season

The cascading, COVID-driven supply chain problems from 2020 continued into 2021, creating major headaches for everyone. Retailers braced for the worst and consumers were warned to buy gifts early.

Face the music: Apple privacy changes hit e-commerce marketing

In April, Apple released iOS 14.5, including new privacy restrictions that were welcomed by consumers, but spelled trouble for marketers, especially those who rely on mobile Facebook ads.

On the lighter side: Tik-Toks, Ted Lasso lessons, and Star Wars quotes

As much as we wanted to put the pandemic in the rearview mirror, we can’t escape it. Humor is essential to survival during these times, so these funny posts make our editor’s picks.

Modern corporate life: A story told in Tik-Toks

For many of us, Tik-Tok videos provide much-needed relief from the stress of COVID and daily work. Emily Morrow expertly paints a very accurate portrait of corporate life by weaving together these hilarious Tik Tok videos.

The Ted Lasso football pitch: Leadership lessons for professionals

Apple TV’s Ted Lasso has provided much-needed respite during the pandemic for legions of fans, and Amanda Magee penned a fabulous post showing how the popular TV hero provides lessons in leading with empathy and kindness.

Rebel round-up: We’ve got a good feeling about these quotes

In honor of May 4th, uber-fan Jenn Vande Zande put together an amazing list of Star Wars quotes and applied them to the corporate world. Talk about resonating!

Wellness and more: Editor’s picks

With COVID still bearing down, employee well-being was a big topic for us in 2021. The “always-on” mindset, which the pandemic has exacerbated, has many of us struggling to draw a line between work and personal space.

Remote employee wellness in a WFH world: Top tips

Our resident wellness expert Emily Morrow offered practical advice for both remote employees (take your PTO!) as well as employers managing a remote workforce. Businesses must strike a balance between connectivity and productivity, she wrote.

Break the cycle of professional burnout: Meet the Chief Wellbeing Officer

In what was one of our most moving posts of the year, Joey Price interviewed Jen Fisher, Chief Well-Being Officer at Deloitte US, who embarked on a mission to combat professional burnout after experiencing it herself. Her humanity is simply breathtaking.

Analog girl, digital world: The evolution of self and career in tech

In her remarkable debut post, SAP’s Cindy Beauchamp offered insightful advice in recounting her professional journey. Her passion for her career is inspiring, and her guidance golden: Follow your heart.

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