Archive for SEM

Do Landing Pages Make a Difference in Pay Per Click?

Question: Do landing pages make a difference in pay per click? The overwhelming answer is YES!

test-landing-pagesOne question a lot of potential clients don’t ask when discussing pay per click is where the visitor will be sent to once they click on an ad.  At some point during the initial discussion with a prospect we will ask the question where would you send the visitors your ppc campaign is going to generate.  Usually a blank look comes over their face or worse they light up and say our homepage!  The truth is a good landing page can be the difference between success and failure.

While sending visitors to your homepage might make sense to some the fact is targeting keywords to ads to landing page is the simple formula one should use.  Using this easy method should make one figure out quickly that a homepage is typically not targeted to one keyword group but instead an inner page or even better a custom landing page makes more sense.

Recently we took on a client who had used pay per click as the primary source to drive leads for his company that sells leads to real estate agents.  While he was happy with his ROI, something told him he could do better and after reviewing his account we agreed.

Once our initial review was complete the client actually graded out pretty high for properly using most of the tools and best practices in his campaigns however we found he was sending his traffic to pages that although they were location specific (a Dallas page, a Plano page, etc.) they really didn’t focus the visitor to complete an action and overall were too cluttered with text and navigation choices.

Once we made a few changes to the campaigns themselves (shoring up some bidding options, match types and extensions) we developed a landing page that was dynamically keyword targeted and focused the visitor on conversion options.  While the client was very hesitant upon first viewing the new landing page as it didn’t “look” like his site after 30 days once he saw his results he became a customer for life!

Here are the results compared to the last full month using his old landing pages.

Campaign report (Nov 1, 2015-Nov 30, 2015. Compare to: Sep 1, 2015-Sep 30, 2015.)

Cost
Nov 1,089.77
Sept 2,268.13
Cost (Change) -51.95%
Avg. CPC
Nov 1.75
Sept 1.81
Avg. CPC (Change %) -3.13%
Click conversion rate
Nov 4.98%
Sept 3.83%
Click conversion rate (Change %) 30.10%
Cost / all conv.
Nov 27.94
Sept 41.22
Cost / all conv. (Change %) -32.21%

If you would like to save money and increase conversions contact us today!

Improve in these 4 area’s this year to improve your online presence!

Take the time to get involved with your online marketing this yearEvery January there is a flood of resolutions both personal and professional. So let’s take a quick moment and look at four items that, if given time and attention to this year, can improve your search and online visibility.

  1. Monitor your backlink profile – For those website owners who received a slap from Google after the Penguin update this is a no brainer. For those website owners who didn’t see a penalty but weren’t paying attention to their backlink profile this should be a wake-up call. Google is serious (I’m sure they have been all along) when it comes to cleaning up their index and targeting bad links is one way they will do so. Take the time to review your backlinks monthly, there are numerous free online tools to do so, and if bad links are found take the steps to remove them. This can be done the old fashioned way (contacting the website owners the link is located on and ask for removal) or if you prefer Google & Bing now offer link removal tools, just make sure you know exactly what you are doing before using them.
  2. Don’t copy and paste! – Ok, maybe that’s a bit too generic of a term to use since what I’m really talking about is duplicate content. Yes there are still website owners/managers who simply take content from someone else’s website and place it on theirs or create 50 pages to target different cities and find and replace only the city name within the content on each page. Folks this is partially what the Panda update was about and what Google has been after for years now. Stop Duplicate Content!
  3. Get Social – Tired of hearing this? Well if the message has not sunk in, maybe you should consider another source for marketing your business than the internet. Social Media is here to stay and just having a Facebook page is not good enough. You must engage and that doesn’t mean posting your thoughts everyday, it also means listening to others and interacting with them. Get Involved!
  4. Don’t Stop Believing – Maybe that should actually be just Don’t Stop. SEO, Social Media, paid search, any form of marketing actually never stops. You must work at it everyday and especially online. Everyday people are searching and talking about products and services why wouldn’t you want to take advantage of all of those opportunities that arise during those searches and conversations?

So just like that diet you are going to undertake, it takes time and effort but great results will greet you at the end of the journey!

Microsoft to buy Yahoo? Again?

Bing / Yahoo Partnership to be Permanent?It appears Microsoft’s feelings weren’t hurt too bad when Yahoo spurned their overtures in ’08. So says the WSJ reporting the software giant, who has repeatedly stumbled in the paid search arena, is putting together a proposal to buy the once dominate internet property.

One could assume the motivation is simple, instead of partnering to achieve the second largest search marketing outlet online, buying would allow Microsoft to obviously hold all of the cards, not only in profit but business strategy as well. Considering the missteps Microsoft has made over the years in trying to “crack the code” as it relates to a viable, sustainable search marketing business, the purchase of Yahoo would only guarantee they get a established presence.

Small Business Paid Search Down in December

Although the economy is showing signs of improvement, a new report suggests small businesses are trying to get smarter with their paid search spend while decreasing their spend budget.

The State of Small Business Advertising report, conducted by online advertising firm WebVisible, found that the average small business spent $2,126 on search in Q4 2010, a 1.1% year-over-year decrease from 2009. The average keyword count was 87 root keywords per advertiser over the last three months of the year — a 30% increase from the same period in 2009.

The study, which included more than 10,000 small businesses in the U.S., indicates smaller advertisers are scaling back but becoming more efficient with paid search. This report was limited to search engines and did not include Facebook or other social media spend.

According to the report, online video usage by small businesses is on the rise with 26% of advertisers using video on their landing pages in the fourth quarter. This is up from 19% the previous year and watching video now ranks second in user actions when visiting a landing page; clicking through to the advertiser’s main Web site was the most common user action. Video views as a percentage of all user activity on landing pages skyrocketed 85% from 2009 to 2010.

Request the report here.

Google Instant, R U Incensed?

Google has rolled out another new feature (they come out almost everyday with one for one or another of their products) and it’s called Google Instant. Basically Google is trying to figure out what you are searching for as you type your query. I don’t know if I like it or not and from a internet marketing perspective it certainly puts the pressure on to have clients listed in the top five organically and the top 8 paid but I do wonder what this will do to search overall.

Should I assume most people will now never go below the initial recommendations they see from Google Instant? Probably not and certainly we won’t know the answer until more time has passed and we can see statistically what is happening with results. I do think this will impact the cost per click for those participating in paid search, I mean after all being in the top 8 will have to be considered prime real estate, correct?

Well I’m sure Google had this in mind in some form before they launched Instant, I just hope it’s not detrimental to the business owner’s we work for.