Some people are just scared of Google AdWords. I guess you can’t blame them to an extent. However, you have to realize Google AdWords is a profitable money making machine. I have created campaigns that have grossed millions. There have been many people out in the space that have created campaigns that resulted in major success. You never know, you could even be one of those advertisers that creates a campaign that results in millions (possibly even net income).
If you are not testing Google AdWords to it’s fullest. Chances are you could be missing out on a lot of opportunity. Do not be scared to test AdWords. Of course we are all scared of losing money. I really can’t blame them as I stated. It took me awhile to overcome my fears in reference to paying for certain ad networks. However, I overcame that which made me more intelligent on how I invest money today.
Even if Google AdWords doesn’t work out for you. Doesn’t mean you have to exclude all paid search advertising. Sometimes you could be failing because of lack of testing through AdWords. I still get advertising networks that are not economical for us or our clients. However, I still insist we need to test everything and anything. (more…)
Wondering what Google Adwords look for when grading your ads and landing pages? Well, there are a couple of factors that play a part in the quality scores that are handed out. If you’re wondering how you can get a better score or how you can stay on top, you’ll need to get familiar with the factors that play a role in how you’ll be graded the next time around.
First off, you should understand why you should care so much about the quality scores given out by Google. When you place your ads on their search engine, they use the scoring system (and max bid) to rank your ad, which can decrease or increase your position on the search results page. This means that you need to get your ad together, so that you can get the best quality score possible to stay high on these lists. Also, don’t think for one second that your ad can’t beat competitors who bid higher than you — this isn’t true. Keywords are still king here, so if you can get the right keywords, this too could boost your quality score.
Google Click Through Rates
One of the top key factors in quality scores for Google Adwords is click through rates, or CTR. Google not only looks through your recent CTR, but your all time history as well. Your CTR rate on Google is what counts — no other search network or content network is relevant here. Makes sense since Google.com is the only search interface they are able to measure and control completely. Now, the position of your ad can either make or break you. If you have a #1 ranking ad in the search results and you have a lower click through rate than an ad that is ranked #4, you could get penalized for it. Then ads that have a lower rank, like #5 and below, won’t face any penalties for low CTR because it is only common sense that they will have fewer CTR since they are lower on the list.
The predictions for CTR is determined by keywords. For instance if you pick a generic keyword like TV, which could be used for a variety of searches like TV installation, TV guide, etc, you would have a lower rate. So in this case, the CTR would be around 2 percent, which in some cases could be a good percentage, but not in the case of generic keywords. Your aim is to go for keywords that have an 8 percent CTR or higher. Now, although the all time CTR history counts, it’s not as important as your most recent history.
Copy for Ads
The keywords you choose should be reflected in your ad copy in a relevant way. Of course, all of the keywords can’t be placed in one ad, and that’s okay. Google is familiar with stemming, themes and latent semantic indexing. Just make sure that the ads you write are using the keywords in the user’s intent to ensure that you get more CTR. If your ad doesn’t have the closest matching keyword, ensure that it has the overall theme of the keyword. Just placing a keyword in ad copy doesn’t mean much without context.
Your Landing Page
This is where all of the users go when they click on your ad. When it comes to your landing page, you should ensure that it offers a good user experience, while still catering to the needs of your business. This is especially important since Google is more worried about their searchers having good search experiences. Just as with your ad copy, your landing page should have keywords and/or keyword themes. When users land on this page, do they get a unique experience? And are they getting the answers they are seeking?
For instance, if you placed an advertisement about a 10 year fixed mortgage loan, when the user gets to your landing page, they shouldn’t reach just a form to fill out. You should thoroughly explain the 10 year mortgage loan and the difference between that and a 10 year adjustable mortgage loan, along with any other relevant information they need to know.
Your account will also receive a quality score. What happens here is, all of the keywords, impressions and clicks you have received, will all be rolled up into one quality score. Try to avoid under-performing keywords because this could have a negative effect on your quality score.
How to Improve Your Quality Score
Now, that you know some of the factors that play a role in the quality score of your ads, you may be wondering how you can boost it. Here are a few things you can do:
- Break up your keywords into small targeted ad groups
- Develop content that is relevant for each group
- Create various ads for each group (then test them all and see which performs the best. The weaker links get deleted)
- Try using exact matches for your keywords vs. broad match
- Place as many keywords as possible into the copy (without overloading it and making it unreadable)
- Make several landing pages to see which of them offer the best conversion rates
- Add pages that are essential, such as an “About Us”, “Contact Us” and “Terms and Conditions” page
- Make sure the landing pages you have are very related to the keywords you are using, to ensure that Google believes your site is relevant.
In order to help boost your quality score for Google Adwords, it takes lots of testing and eliminations. It is important that you know what to keep and what to trash to ensure that your ads and landing page are high in performance and best of all, high in the Google rankings.
Many people have strayed away from the usage of Pay-Per-Click ad campaigns because they have gotten pretty expensive. A lot of the competitive keywords cost lots of money and unless you are a big brand, getting a return on what’s been paid for the high-priced keywords is less likely. If marketers were to create a more strategic and leveraged plan, they could actually get a good thing going with the use of PPC engines. So should we completely drop the idea of using PPC engines? I think not.
How PPC Ads Can Benefit Your Marketing Campaign
Pay-Per-Click ads first became popularized because it was a new avenue that allowed Internet marketers to pick and choose where they wanted their ads to be seen. Since a lot of people didn’t effectively leverage their campaigns, they didn’t bring enough revenue to make a sizable profit. Using PPC ads can benefit you in a multitude of ways. Choosing the right strategy and tools for your campaign is the only thing keeping you away from success. Here are some of the benefits of using Pay-Per-Click ads:
- Building mailing list. PPC ads are great ways to help build mailing lists for your company. A lot of entrepreneurs that are involved in affiliate marketing use PPC engines because they bring in a lot more potential customers and affiliates. Rapidly building a very large mailing list can easily be done with the use of Pay-Per-Click ads, which can allow affiliate marketers earn more commission via back-end sales. The key is to (a) build a high conversion rate squeeze page, (b) provide free bonuses with high value, (c) accumulate a large list of relevant keywords and (d) set up a strong back-end selling method.
- Selling affiliate products. Whether you’re tying to sell your own products or those of an affiliate marketer, you can use PPC engines. They have been proven to be very effective and easy to use. A lot of affiliate marketing entrepreneurs are still using this method to their benefit. The key is to build the keywords around the product name or author and accumulate keywords within the niche of your product, which will allow you to create an effective PPC campaign.
- Focusing on lead generation and ready-to-buy customers. PPC isn’t only good for generating a list of interested people, but it can also help you to change interested folks into ready-to-buy customers. A lot of marketers don’t have a focus on the ready-to-buy customers, which causes them to fail miserably in their ad campaign. To succeed, you will have to (a) focus your attention on converting your visitors to these ready-to-buy customers, (b) build an attractive conversion rate web page for generations of leads and (c) clearly set up the goals for your ads and lead generation page.
- Viral marketing. If there is a great way of spreading the word about your products, it’s through viral marketing. Although there are a lot of methods you can use for viral marketing, some marketers use PPC as a tool for spreading special reports (which are perfect for increasing reputation and business for the long haul). The key to success here is to (a) organize high special reports of high value, (b) give out fresh info and (c) motivate others to help you spread around the reports.
- Using PPC for your landing page. After you have effectively created great PPC ads, you will need to have an equally effective landing page to captivate the visitors that click on the ad links. Whether you’re looking to get people to sign up for a newsletter or buy a product, a landing page will help to push them to action. You’ll be able to customize each advertisement to measure their effectiveness (based on click-through rates). Pick between posting a landing page that is either offering reviews, comparisons or viral marketing. Some believe that review landing pages are the most effective. You should provide negative and positive comments for the affiliate products on the page. Simply research and review the products, give negative and positive reviews, build a conversion rate review page that is attractive and accumulate a large list of keywords for the review page.
Using PPC Engines
The reason why so many people can’t resist using PPC engines is because it delivers quicker results than through organic search results. With Pay-Per-Click ads, you are able to easily adjust bids, keywords and ads, along with the landing pages connected to them. You receive instant feedback from the ads you have put up, making it easier to track your campaign. You’re top goal is to ensure that you’re attracting the right audience (you can even turn on and off ads for the different countries you are advertising in) and getting the results you want. By making the right approach to PPC marketing, it could be a very cost effective strategy. Just remember to start slowly and build experience before making any large commitments.
The most popular PPC engines out there include Google Adwords, Microsoft Adcenter and Yahoo! Search Marketing. All have great features and rates, but it’s up to you to choose the right keywords for your campaign. Keywords cost differently based on their popularity. The more popular it is, the more it will cost. Try to find the halfway point between affordability and relevance when picking out keywords for your PPC campaign. Using the PPC engines will offer some guidance in helping you choose keywords (by providing search volumes). Before you begin your campaign, make sure to create a budget and try your hardest to stick to it. It may be tempting to up your daily limits to help drive in more traffic, but if you aren’t able to cover the costs, don’t risk it!
Choosing the right PPC engine all depends on what you’re looking for. Although Google Adwords is the most popular, it can be more expensive than others (Yahoo! Search Marketing and Microsoft Adcenter. Of course, the others won’t offer you the coverage, management and reporting facilities Google can. If you want, you can mix things up with a variety of engines to see which do your campaign the most good. Start with one and slowly begin working with
Back in December, when Google launched its real-time search, it was predicted that Twitter was going to receive a big increase in traffic, which had previously declined after a peak in the summer of 2009. So far, it looks as though those predictions were true after all. According to comScore data, there has been a 9 percent increase of unique visitors to Twitter — between December of 2009 and January 2010. The all time high was reached in January, with 21.79 million unique Twitter visitors; this number is slightly above the 21.25 million that was recorded in July of 2009, by comScore. By the end of 2009 (December), the count for unique visitors was up by 3.1 percent, over November.
Twitter seems to have seen a great impact in the month of December, thanks to the December 7 launch of Google’s real time search. Then according to Experian Hitwise, the data suggests that it was Google that was the main source for the increase in traffic to Twitter. The amount of traffic that was coming from Google was increased by 9 percent, compared to the week ending December 5 and the week ending February 13; the count jumped from 12.8 percent to 14 percent in this time period. Hitwise too saw a 5 percent increase in market share of U.S. visitors within the same time period.
It seemed only natural that Google decided to launch Buzz (a supposed competitor of Twitter and an add-on for Gmail) after spending about $15 million for Twitter’s feed. Of course, Google wants to keep majority of the incoming traffic for its own network, where they’re able to deliver more ads to users.
On the other end, for Twitter, it seems that things are looking quite promising for them. So far, they are maintaining the U.S. share of visitors, while expanding globally and on the usage of its third-party application service via APIs. Compared to Google Buzz, Twitter offers its users more freedom to control as much as they want and how much personal info they want to share — it is an already established social media network, so the odds are against Google Buzz for a while. It will also be difficult to measure the impact of Google Buzz because it is embedded in Gmail.
Last month, Evan Williams, the co-founder of Twitter, made a comment about the usage of Twitter was decreasing, saying that the microblogging service was bigger than ever. At one point, Twitter’s traffic was on the verge of flatlining in the United Stated, with figures backing up what was being perceived. Then Williams created a tweet that said “across all metrics that matter, yesterday was Twitter’s highest usage day ever. (And today will be bigger)”. A lot of people were thinking the same thing, especially since the rush of people was dying down after the media rush died. But Twitter still has the tweeters that are using the site more and more and on different platforms.
It is believed that people are still going to be signing up on Twitter and using it over the long term because Twitter is just awesome (well, they offer a lot of great stuff). Just let Clark Shirky tell it, who stated that Twitter has more raw capabilities for users than anything since (the creation of) email. It would be difficult to wait out Twitter because it is lightweight and endlessly useful, getting better as more people begin to use it. Everyone is using it, she stated that brands and institutions are using it and that Twitter is becoming a place where important conversations are taking place.
The day the co-founder predicted that Twitter had a good day and that the next day would be even bigger shows great significance. Now, media organizations continue to use Twitter more and more, increasing the site’s traffic higher. It might not be as much as before or as high as Facebook, but it will indeed be bigger and better.
Since the broadening of Twitter’s demographic (towards 24 year olds and younger), things have been going very well for the site. It has also been growing for more mature markets within the U.K. and U.S. and other places around the world. Internationally, comScore showed that Twitter jumped up 8% in unique visitors (73.5 million in January from 65.2 million in December).
Facebook Zero and Google Buzz are also trying to get a nice share of the real-time market. Not sure what will happen with Buzz, but there are predictions that Facebook Zero may have great success, since a lot of big Facebook users and mobile owners are teens that also use Twitter (this could have an impact on Twitter’s site).
Let’s look at a quick comparison of Twitter, Facebook and Google Buzz:
Facebook: The users on this site have Twitter beat; they update their profiles over 60 million times daily, which would translate to a rate of 700 profiles per second. The stats for Facebook only show profile updates. The hundreds of other activities that are on Facebook aren’t counted at all. Comments to updates and “likes” to status updates are counted, but adding links, pictures, pages or joining groups counts as nothing.
Google: After launching Buzz, there was an average of 55 posts per second. These stats were released two days after the site’s launch, so by now it could have grown a whole lot more.
Twitter: The amount of tweets per day have grown to nearly 50 million, averaging 600 tweets per second. Although, it’s kind of difficult to see the true number of tweets since a tweet is considered to be an original message, comment, retweet or links that are being shared, so each time a comment is posted to a tweet, it is counted as a tweet.
Overall, it seems that Facebook is the winner when it comes to the amount of activity that takes place on their site. Runner up would be Twitter. It seems as though we’ll have to wait a couple of years to see how Google Buzz really compares to other social media sites.
Various people across the web get all shook up on page rank thinking that it is the key factor to getting rankings. Which granted higher PR websites generally do carry more “authority”. Search engines take several measurements into consideration when their determining who ranks higher then other websites.
Let’s discuss a few these factors below:
Anchor Text: Yes most generally you will rank for what is in your anchor text, but does your site have the trust? If not don’t plan on ranking. More then likely you could get links from high PR sites that are new sites that have new sites linked to them, but does that mean their going to make you rank? Not necessarily.
So what do you need then? You need trust built into your site, but how can you build trust rank into your site? Get links from old sites I mean extremely old sites don’t go for anything less. Take a look at the sites below that you can get included in that will give you a head start in the search engines.
- Yahoo Directory: Yahoo Directory is a very valuable directory. If you haven’t submitted to Yahoo yet you should. Yahoo is one of the most important directories out there if you ask me. Check this out though when you do a paid $300 dollar submission you get links from various other Yahoo Directories such as au.dir.yahoo.com (Australia), ca.dir.yahoo.com (Canada), and other various other sub continent Yahoo directories.All these directories carry major value. From our intense search engine research Yahoo seems to pull new sites out of the sand box, so it’s unbeatable to have a link there. Keep in mind you won’t get much “PR JUICE” from Yahoo, but what you will get is a link from a old trusted site that has millions of other trusted sites linking into it.
- BOTW: Best of the Web has been around since 1994 this is another valuable directory you can submit to. BOTW is right next to Yahoo when it comes to trust rank and quality. These links will pass your site some trust .
- DMOZ: Dmoz is a free directory, but very hard to get into. Seems like to me here lately they have only been accepting sites that are more educational or contain a lot of content.
These are 3 major directories that every site should be listed in specially newer sites. Once again please do not ignore these sites they will help your site with trust. We have worked with sites that had zero visiblity in the search engines. They wasn’t even ranking for their brand name, but when we included them into Yahoo it pulled them right out of the sandbox.
When building links the idea is about quality and not spam. The best way to get links is through content creation, hard labor link request work, submitting to old trusted directories, and etc. Creating content is something that takes time, but is well worth the effort, so just keep in mind Trust Rank and Page Rank is two different algorithms.
Go for a turst worthy site and become Google’s best friend.
Basing links on page rank is a big problem now days out of all honesty you should never base links on page rank. Which granted don’t take me me the wrong way links that do come from higher page rank websites are better to a degree. The only thing that is better about links coming from higher page ranked websites is that it will give you some juice of course, but once you hit a certain point with your page rank will be a bit harder to get up, so in other words new links from pr0 websites can work just as well (you can get more of them more easier).
Which I’m not saying don’t try to get links from high pr sites, but what I am saying is don’t put your mind totally in that direction because if your wanting to rank then you should try to obtain links from pr0,1,2,3 pages because you can get them a lot easier therefore getting handfuls of them with various anchor text.
Let me discuss a few type of links that you should try to get.
Old Websites: Generally you should try to get links from old websites which new websites will work, but most generally it is known that old website pass more trust rank then what new websites do, but when it comes down to it having an old domain can out beat anything when I refer to old domain I’m referring to your domain.
Authority Sites: I don’t really use this term to much when talking with clients I think people try to make it out to be more then what it is. Most generally what people are referring to when they say authority links are links from old trusted websites, but yes there good links .
Organic Linking: Honestly if your able to get links on a daily bases then you got it going on because nothing can out beat organic linking. You can install a blog to get organic links, but keep in mind you won’t get your desired anchor text you want, but if you have a blog you can leverage your linking to your advantage for example tell someone to link to you to enter a contest you have going on (use blogs to do this with).
Article Links: Article links can be great links the reason being is becuase they come from a dedicated page and don’t have a bunch of other links going out on the page, but then again it depends on the article sites.
Editorial Blog Links: Blog links can be very powerful which granted they don’t contain a ton of page rank, but the thing is with blog links is that you get a dedicate page to you. Which some SEO’s might disagree with me (rookies) in this area, but tell you what I’ve seen people go from no where to the top for some of the most competitive keywords out there from obtain blog links. Now don’t go getting a bunch of spam blog links try to get links from higher editorial sites bloggers that actually do a review for your link (editorial sites).
Web Directories: Web directories do contain value still some people say they don’t, but the facts are there is still a ton of great web directories out there. Most generally the better directories are the ones that have been around for a long time such as dmoz, yahoo, and similar directories like that.
I didn’t really go into depth too much on this topic, but I just wanted you guys to keep in mind to not base links on page rank. If you can get a link from a dedicated page that has a pr0, but your the only link on there go for it. Another reason you don’t want to try to acquire links from high pr sites is because Google will smack down on you quick.