On any given day someone will use Google search 14.6 times, that according to myself, my best guesstimate, and the number of times I actually use Google each day! Really, the number might be competely off but the fact is we use search engines often in the day. What happens when we use those search engines though? Do we analyze the results that come up? Do we read the abstracts of each result and then pick out which result we like best? The answer, not suprisingly is no! We trust the first results of what comes up more than anything else the search engine gives us.
A fairly old study from the University of Indiana tells us that we trust rank more than relevance. The abstract of the study states:
An eye tracking experiment revealed that college student users have substantial trust in Google’s ability to rank results by their true relevance to the query. When the participants selected a link to follow from Google’s result pages, their decisions were strongly biased towards links higher in position even if the abstracts themselves were less relevant. While the participants reacted to artificially reduced retrieval quality by greater scrutiny, they failed to achieve the same success rate.
Further, one search shows us the difficulty in getting to the second page of Google. Let’s look at the word “Olympics”, go ahead and Google and see if you see the same thing. Here are some facts we can draw from this one search:
- There are 14,100,00 results. I look at the first 3 or 4 when deciding what I want to click on.
- The first things I see are the “natural” and “sponsored” search results.
- There are a total of 9 different websites that I could visit.
- Halfway through the page are “news” results.
- Then before I even get to the link to the second page, MORE “related searches” are given to me implying that I wasn’t able to find what I wanted on the page so I should try another search!
We can conclude from all this how important it is to be on the FIRST PAGE of Google! Even if you have the best website, with the greatest offers, and services the world needs… if you’re not showing up first no one will ever know. So if you are on the second page of Google or even further back it looks like it’s time to invest in some SEO or some PPC! Contact me if you want to know the name of a great company
This morning I was in a Google Adwords webinar and the question was asked, “Why would I ever want to use anything but broad matched keywords in my campaign? Don’t I want lots of traffic to my site?” The answer to his question is YES you want traffic, but NO you don’t want non-relevant traffic.
She’s happy… but not because of free dental work.
For example, let’s look at the keyword “dentist”. At Get Found First we manage several dental PPC campaigns, and this is always a word we include with a broad match. Many people will use the search term “dentist” when they want to see a dentist. However, many people are looking for free dental work so they search “free dentist” or “pro bono dentist”. Our ads show up for both terms but our clients aren’t really the dentists giving out the pro bono work… I’ve only heard of that for people living in poverty in 3rd world countries.
So what do we do? Use Negative Keywords! I found a good article from http://ppcblog.com/with some great suggestions. Many of these we do already here, but some are new and very helpful:
Generally you should avoid these keywords:
- Meaning of
- Map of
- What is
- Low Price
All these words are either information inclined or have a “want something for nothing” feel. These types of searchers do not convert.
Although this list GENERALLY should be avoided, that is not always the case. For example if you have an offer for something free, you may want to advertise for that free offer.
Negative keyword lists should always be included in accounts, especially when using broad match keywords. This type of campaign takes time and close monitoring. Frequent checking of search terms will be neccesary to be effective.
In conclusion a campaign with many broad terms will drive traffic to your site, but if you are looking for relevant traffic you will need to toss some negative keywords in there.
The most important pillar for PPC is the one I am going to discuss today. “The 8 Pillars of Success with Paid Search,” by Josh Dreller, talks about 8 of them, and we all know that no roof can be held up by one pillar, but I am here to discuss the strongest pillar.
With all due respect to Josh, he kind of just threw this pillar somewhere in the middle of his post, and it deserves more attention than that. First, here is what Josh said:
“Test. Optimize. Then test again. This is the absolute mantra of the industry. What we do is find trends and act on them. We don’t know if the new creative will work or the bidding experiment will be a big waste of money. However, it’s the only way we can fine-tune paid search accounts. Just make the best analysis as possible and test your hypothesis for long enough to know if it’s working but not so long to disrupt the entire project. Over time, you’ll have enough insights to keep your account humming.”
Okay, he did use the word, MANTRA. That does give it some much needed emphasis. Here are a few thoughts on testing, optimizing, and testing again:
- ONLINE ADVERTISING IS SUBJECTIVE. There is no one “right way” for all online ads. This isn’t calculus. This is Google Adwords. This is Yahoo! Sponsored Search. This is Bing Ads (or whatever they call theirs).
- TEST - Even when you don’t need to. So you have a killer CTR. That is great, but is that the best you can do? Are there more keywords that will have a higher conversion? Is there another landing page to try out?
- DON’T BE A WUSSY! Take risks with broad match and try different bidding techniques. If you don’t try, you’ll never know.
- DON’T FORGET YOUR EXPERIMENT. It is okay to try new things. You need to all of the time, but don’t forget the changes you make so that you know what to look for. In my younger days as a PPC manager, I would make changes and then forget what I wanted to learn from my experiment.
- KEEP GOING. The game isn’t over till the fat lady sings. If you still are running online ad campaigns, you should never stop testing and optimizing.
To help you remember, repeat after me: Test – Test. Optimize – Optimize. Test Again. Test Again.
If that wasn’t enough to help you remember, maybe an example will help. Have you ever read the instructions on a shampoo bottle? I always thought it was fairly obvious what to do with shampoo, but the shampoo companies feel a need to tell you just in case you don’t remember what to do with shampoo. Have you thought what the instructions were yet?
Rinse. Lather. Repeat. To help you remember your best PPC management practices, think shampoo instructions. Rinse. Lather. Repeat.
Test. Optimize. Then test again. WARNING: You should never try to apply shampoo to computers! And avoid getting shampoo in your eyes!
Tom Bennison wrote a great article on why companies should outsource their pay-per-click campaigns. He gave eight reasons why and here they are, some direct quotes and some paraphrased using our name and company for the agency (For the full article and references,click here):
- Get Found First has unique relationships with search engines. This allows us to get quicker resolutions and answers to questions as well as upload data quicker.
- We have advanced tools and methods that allow us to fully optimize your campaign and achieve a better return on investment.
- Pay-Per-Click is what we live and breath each and every day. We also experiement with all the new tools and we are always up-to-date on the latest software.
- Get Found First’s Pay-Per-Click specialists use the latest bid-management software to ensure all keyphrases are performing well at a low cost-per-click.
- On average agencies achieve better click-through-rates than marketers, with agencies at 3.4% and marketers at 2.8%.
- We provide comprehensive reporting and ROI analysis.
- Pay-Per-Click achieves higher conversion rates, for both Search Engine Optimization and Pay-Per-Click in particular, with agencies achieving an average of 6.8% and marketers achieving 5.4%.
- “Good Pay-Per-Click companies are well worth the cost as they will always make you more money than you would otherwise make.” -Jill Whalen, Search Marketing Columnist
The above reasons are spot-on as to why companies should outsource their Pay-Per-Click marketing campaigns. However, this not only applies to businesses looking to advertise through PPC, but also for businesses that offer PPC as a complement to their main service. This could include website developers, business consultants, Search Engine Optimization companies, etc.
Outsourcing to an experienced Pay-Per-Click management company not only saves you time, but will save you money and most likely make you money. I really like how Tom points out the fact that we are here to get you a low cost-per-click. This is the part that saves you money, then you will make money by letting us get you better conversion rates and click-through rates, after all, this is what we do each and every day.
As Adwords experts it is important for Get Found First to stay on top of changes in Google Adwords policy. A recent change that may affect your advertising pertains to pharmaceutical policy. Straight from the Google Adwords blog we learn:
Only VIPPS and CIPA certified pharmacies will be allowed to advertise
We’ve made the decision to further restrict the ads we accept for online pharmacy sites in the U.S. and Canada. Starting at the end of this month, Google AdWords will only accept ads from online pharmacies in the U.S. that are accredited by the National Association Boards of Pharmacy VIPPS program, and from online pharmacies in Canada that are accredited by the Canadian International Pharmacy Association (CIPA.)
Pharmacies can only target ads within their country
These pharmacies may only target ads to users in the country in which they are accredited. This policy change does not affect our online pharmacy policy for countries outside the U.S. and Canada.
If you would like to read the full post, vist: http://adwords.blogspot.com/
We’ll keep you up to date on any changes relating to Adwords!
About 10 years ago I had a buddy who used Google for his searches… I found it interesting that he wasn’t using Yahoo, AltaVista, or MSN. The Google page only had a place to search, no entertainment news, no email services, etc. I just didn’t understand what it was that he liked and millions of people like today. What was it that he liked? Relevancy. When he searched for something he found exactly what he wanted in the first results.
Relevant searches have put Google in the position they are in today, with both searches and paid advertisements. However, for paid advertisements Google must now balance the relevant ads and the ads for which people are willing to fork out the big bucks. How they do this is with a quality score.
The quality score tells us how relevant your ad is to what people are actually searching for. Are a flower shop advertising on the keyword flower? You will have a HIGH quality score. Are you a multi-level marketing company advertising on the keyword flower? You will have a LOW quality score. Google then rewards those with high quality scores with lower prices to be in the number one spot. Yes, the multi-level marketer can still get the number one spot, they will just have to pay more.
It pays to have a High Quality Score on Google Adwords!
So courtesy of the Google Help Center, here is the list of what makes up the Quality Score and things you should focus on in your Adwords campaigns:
- The historical clickthrough rate (CTR) of the keyword and the matched ad on Google; note that CTR on the Google Network only ever impacts Quality Score on the Google Network — not on Google
- Your account history, which is measured by the CTR of all the ads and keywords in your account
- The historical CTR of the display URLs in the ad group
- The quality of your landing page
- The relevance of the keyword to the ads in its ad group
- The relevance of the keyword and the matched ad to the search query
- Your account’s performance in the geographical region where the ad will be shown
- Other relevance factors
Best of luck raising those quality scores!
According to Barry Schwartz of clickz.com, Google is planning a “Google Store View”. Currently in Google Maps you can see traffic, a normal map, a satelite map, a terrain map, and as you zoom in more you can even do a “street view”. This allows you to see what the area looks like if you were actually on the street itself. Google accomplishes street view with a fleet of cars mounted with cameras. They simply drive around the streets with sophisticated camera equipment constantly taking pictures. If you’re interested in seeing what it looks like here is an article with some up close pictures of the equipment.
So this brings us to the point of this post… Googles “Store View”. Apparently now Google is planning on entering stores and taking pictures of everything going on inside. A store in NYC called “Oh Nuts” tipped Clickz to Googles plans and supposedly came in and took pictures. It makes me wonder if this is really plausible. Would the ROI on hundreds or thousands of photographers taking pictures be worth it? It will be interesting to see what Google comes up with… Stay Tuned!
Looking for a good way to get your blog found by the hundreds of millions of internet users that are surfing around daily? Well look no further… Technorati.com is your answer. Technorati is a website that allows you to index your blog to make it easier for readers to find. It allows you to add your blog to several categories and put dozens of tags for your blog; making it much easier to find when someone searches for a blog.
If you’re not a blog owner but want to read blogs, Technorati does that too! It allows you to search blog posts, or entire blogs for the content you are looking for. We are currently adding our blog to Technorati so look for us soon on there.
(That’s our Technorati claim token)