The devil is in the details. We’ve all heard this saying before and it can relate to online marketing in so many ways. What this idiom means is that it’s the small details that can often make a relatively simple task more difficult and time consuming. As you look closer, there are more things that can be worked on and you’ll understand why an internet marketing campaign can always be changed and made better!
Here are a few minor but important aspects of online marketing that can be easily skipped over or even forgotten:
You only focus on optimizing for Google – If you completely skip out on Yahoo and Bing, you’re missing out on a smaller but still very important demographic. Ranking well on these sites will help your business if you’re struggling on Google.
You ignore free, local resources – I went kayaking at a local rental place after seeing good reviews on Yelp. However, I was surprised to see a comment by a customer stating that the address in the listing was wrong. This means that the business has not claimed the listing or bothered to correct this mistake. When resources like this are free and you’re already receiving numerous positive reviews, it can only reflect negatively on your business if you choose not to be more involved.
You focus too much on organic rankings – Search engine rankings can be volatile and unpredictable depending on competitors, search trends and even holidays. I’ve known people who obsess over their rankings on a day-by-day basis – as in yesterday I was number 2 but today I’m number 3, what happened? This is not an effective way to gauge your progress and your efforts can be more helpful to your long term brand presence in organic searches.
You always use exact keyword matches – It can be tempting to always use exact keywords when linking in anchor text. But with the Google Panda updates, Google is on the lookout. This mean that you can be penalized for excessive exact match anchor text. The bottom line is that Google wants more natural linking keywords that are actually helping people instead of just appeasing their Google bots.
These are just a few things I could think of at the top of my head at the moment and the list is never ending. Even if you don’t have time to sit down and digest all the details at once, it’s good to go over what you can from time to time so that you have a clearer view of the bigger picture. Don’t like the minor details overwhelm you!
This has been a popular question that has been highly debated. The theory is that if you choose the same keywords for targeted SEO and PPC campaigns, your efforts will work against each other and you’ll lose out, either in paid or organic search. Cannibalization is the term experts use when SEO and PPC compete against each other… this means wasted time, money and effort – especially when paid search is involved.
Surprisingly, a recent study of 400 campaigns by Google shows that 89% of the traffic generated by paid ads is not replaced by organic clicks. Overall, this means that paid ads did not steal clicks away from organic results in this sample.
Of course, this all depends on your industry and you could see stronger results using SEO and PPC or just one method. If you hear anyone make generalizations about using both methods without analyzing your keywords and business, it’s safe to be on the skeptical side.
For example, if you’re ranking high (or are number one) for a keyword, it probably won’t be helpful to focus your efforts on trying to get to the #1 spot for PPC as well. Instead, the benefit of PPC is that it can give your business better exposure for key words that you’re not ranking so high for organically.
Let us know if you have any questions about whether SEO and/or PPC is right for your business and we’d be happy to help you out!
Did you know that Google Analytics gives you insight on Site Speed? Pay per click marketing is all about effective landing page optimization and this feature can help tremendously with understanding how to improve your PPC campaigns.
While we’re all so concerned about the type of content and calls to action on landing pages (and rightfully so), it’s also important to consider the role that page load time plays into your PPC campaign’s success. In the end, this will affect the user experience so that they stay or bounce away.
Looking at Site Speed data will help you get a better understanding of how page load times can affect quality score. These reports will have a thorough breakdown of what your slowest loading pages are. You’ll also be able to see the types of browser and internet connection your visitors have. If most of your visitors are using Internet Explorer 3 on 56K dial-up, that could be an issue. The best thing about having this information at your fingertips is that it gives you an opportunity to fix problems and create faster loading landing pages that are helpful to your visitors.
If you’ve used the Site Speed report before, what do you think?
To learn more about adding this tracking feature to your site(s) check out this article from Google.
*Remember, this tracking snippet goes in BEFORE the </head> portion of your code.
Yahoo! always seems be overshadowed by the giant that is Google, so it’s good to see something new from them.
Yahoo! Search Clues allows users to search keyword trends over time. You can also see demographics such as: age, gender, income and location. Pretty neat right? And it can definitely come in handy on your PPC or SEO campaigns.
I think the visual comparison between PPC and SEO is cool and probably accurate. Don’t you think? SEO is more of a consistent and long term tactic while paid search can fluctuate depending on different factors.
Since Google Instant launched, there have been concerns that long tail searches won’t be as beneficial to SEO and PPC. Let’s take a look at what is affected and why:
What is ‘Long Tail’?
As this dino-graphic shows, generic keywords are more likely to yield a large volume of general search results. But if you get more descriptive with the keywords you’re searching for, you’re more likely to get specific results and find what you’re looking for. Example: searching “hair salon” versus “kids hair salon in los angeles”.
When you use broad, generic keywords, this means that you’ll have a lot of competition. In the SEO world, this means that it will take a lot of time and effort to be a viable competitor. When it comes to PPC, this means that you’ll have to bid more in order for your ads to show up at the top of corresponding search queries.
When you concentrate on your niche business with long tail keywords, it makes it easier to succeed. Or at least, that was the point until Google Instant came along and “killed” the long tail.
The Google Instant Connection
In addition to making things more complicated for SEO and PPC, some believe that Google Instant is also making searchers more lazy. But is there any substance to these claims? One thing is for sure, Google Instant is changing the impressions game. Did you know that if a user stops typing on a particular keyword and results are displayed for a minimum of 3 seconds, that counts as an impression even if they start to type again. Boo to slow typers!
Check out this search for “hair salon”. If I’m searched for a salon in LA, why would I type any further? I would simply click on the suggested term.
The argument for paid search is that people would stop bidding for long tail searches since they would benefit more from broad terms, such as this. This means high competition, high prices and more money for Google.
What do you think about Google Instant and how will it affect SEO, and long tail when it comes to paid search?
According to Google, about twenty percent of the queries that they receive on a given day, have not been viewed in the last three months. Some can avoid being part of this undesirable group by using broad match to help improve quality score. Quality score is determined by many variables including: historical performance of your account, landing page quality, and historical click-through-rates of your keywords. First, when you use broad match with Google Adwords, it automatically generates a list of relevant variations of your keywords. Here are some things to consider before using broad match for your campaign:
Benefits of using Broad Match
Save time. Instead of spending time building lists or by testing via trial and error, broad match covers all different variations of your keywords.
Save money. If an ad isn’t doing as well based on a certain variation of a keyword, the broad match system will automatically stop the ads and search for other variations.
Utilize data for trends that you might not see otherwise. Using broad match gives you traffic trends and results from trying different variations of keywords.
Help attract more web traffic to gain clicks and conversions.
Broad Match isn’t Right for You
An ad campaign for a brand conscious company may not want to stray away from their strict control of keywords; this means giving up clicks in order to maintain the brand.
If you are on a limited budget and already spending all your funds on your keyword advertising campaign, broad match may not work for you.
If rearranging the order of your keywords will cause a different meaning, broad match may bring you untargeted traffic.
Overall, broad match can help you be successful in getting more clicks. When properly managed, it can be cost effective and help you gain consumer insight about your products and services.
When it comes to paid and organic search results, many experts have their opinions on which is more effective. Many studies have shown that Internet users are more likely to click on the first few organic search results than the pay per click advertisements. This does not mean that PPC ads are without benefits. So, why does one have to be better than the other? Most industry experts believe that it is important to focus efforts on both paid ads and organic search in order to maximize your gains.
It is important to understand the relationship between paid ads and natural searches. Together, they can build a strong foundation that your company cannot be successful without. In the short run, a paid ad campaign is beneficial because you will receive traffic almost immediately. With PPC, you can control the content of your ads and quickly make changes. On the other hand, organic search marketing is a tedious task and it may take many months before you see any results from your efforts.
Even though this strategy may not work for everyone, it is crucial to understand the synergy between these two approaches. Research has revealed that showing up for paid and organic results increases overall click through rates. Although natural results may get more clicks, they receive even more traffic when paired with an ad campaign. Also, paid ads get more clicks when you also show up in the organic search results. Not only will the number of clicks increase, but studies show that both efforts will help increase page views, conversions, quality of the visitors, and time spent on your site. So, before you make your final decision on what to focus on, don’t overlook the benefits of using both paid ads and organic search results!
Google just released another tool to help you find keywords for your pay per click campaign and/or your overall search marketing campaign. First you’ll need to input your website and some of your target keywords and click submit to see the results. See below for a screen shot of the search results that I received when testing this out. I entered in emarketed.com and the following keywords: seo, ppc, web marketing, web design, website video marketing, cms, seo cms, organic cms, search engine optimization
And it gave me 810 suggestions showing me monthly searches, competition level, and search trends. You can click the magnifying glass icon to see the search trends for a specific keyword. A new window will open with Google Insights for Search which provides some very interesting data. You can see how many searches are done wordwide and have it broken down by country, state, and city level. The below screen shot shows what I found when I drilled down on “web design” and then selected United States and California. I was able to see that San Francisco had the most searches for this keyword with Los Angeles coming in 4th. It also displayed “google web design” as a rising search term so this would be a good word for us to optmize. Please disregard this last statement if you’re an SEO and/or web design company. Wink Wink 😉
I’m going to be frank with my opinion here. Just because Google is an innovative, booming company, one which will change—and probably already has changed—the way our world accesses and manages information, that doesn’t mean by any stretch of the imagination that Google should be treated with some sort of ivory-tower, holier-than-thou deference.
Believe me when I say, Google is as successful as it is specifically because they have done so much to shed the image of traditional mega-corporations. If you tried to call up your brokerage firm for some support and advice, you might get it, eventually. If, however, you are running a Google Adwords or Adsense campaign and you find yourself needing some questions answered, Mr. Google is more than happy to put down his trillions and his yacht and answer your phone call.
This sounds funny, but I mean it. Google has revamped the image of the consumer-conscious company. Their customer support professionals managing the Adwords and Adsense departments are nothing short of spectacular when it comes to helping you iron out your difficulties. But even though I’ve seen this in my own business and with dozens of eMarketed’s clients, some members of our industry fail to realize the significance of Google’s strong commitment to customer service.
In short, if your online venture should take you past the gates of Google, don’t be afraid to knock. They are not your average company. They do not want to be your average company. They want to be bothered, constantly. Their young employees play video games at work and eat gourmet meals three times a day. However, as a testament to their hiring process, Google is staffed entirely with young upstarts who will drop their unicycles and forks at a moment’s notice to answer a client’s call or email. These kids are dedicated to their job, period.
Google’s goal with creating Adwords and Adsense was to level the playing field between the small business and the mega-corp. As a result, small businesses have a leg up because they’re used to handling issues with suppliers and other businesses face-to-face or over the phone. Larger and more traditional businesses will have to adapt their thinking or be left in the dust when it comes to customer service and business solutions in the post-Google Age.