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Google Instant Search Myths Debunked

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emmadavis | Friday, September 10th, 2010

Filed under: Advanced, Advanced, Basic, Basic, Intermediate, Intermediate, PPC Tips & Advice, SEO Tips & Advice

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Before you let the news about Google’s new Instant Search function cause you to run through the SEO streets screaming, “the sky is falling!”, make sure you know the facts. The blogosphere is buzzing with fear-mongering and paranoia about what Google Instant Search means for SEO and internet marketing, but not all information is created equal. Here are some common misconceptions regarding Google’s latest entry in the search world. Read More »

Preaching Versus Practicing Adwords

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Robert | Tuesday, August 17th, 2010

Filed under: Advanced, Intermediate, PPC Tips & Advice

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A Theorist’s Definition of Large-Scale:
Most theorists who preach but don’t practice the management of Adwords define large-scale in terms of keywords under management. I think it’s safe to say that theorists would define large-scale accounts as having many thousands, even tens of thousands, and sometimes hundreds of thousands of keywords under management. As practitioners, however, we define large-scale in a slightly-different way.

A Practitioner’s Definition of Large-Scale:
Yes, although it’s true that large-scale accounts have thousands and thousands of keywords, the real definition lies in the number of ad groups in an account, not keywords.

Since keywords have to be segmented into small groups (i.e., ad groups) together with other keywords that share a literal word or phrase, then the real measure of a large-scale Adwords account is measured in terms of the number of ad groups in the account. This is something theorists don’t have to contend with.

The penalty for not segmenting keywords into very small ad groups that share a literal common word or phrase is a poor quality rating. See a previous blog, “Six Essential Steps For Adwords Success”.

So what?:
So why even discuss the difference between a theorist’s definition of large-scale and a practitioner’s definition of large-scale? Because practitioners are faced with having to manage and optimize bottom-of-funnel (BOF) performance (i.e., paying customers), which is the real measure of cost of acquisition (COA), as opposed to optimizing top-of-funnel (TOF) performance (i.e., leads), which is better described as cost per lead (CPL) not COA. This is a very important point that often gets completely overlooked by most PPC professionals. Read More »

Six Essential Steps For Adwords Success

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Robert | Tuesday, August 10th, 2010

Filed under: Advanced, Basic, Intermediate, PPC Tips & Advice

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Adwords Can Be So Devious?:
Adwords is intended to look so easy that a child could succeed. However, the fact is that the contrary is true. Rarely can you succeed at Adwords without knowing the ins and outs of how to make it work to your advantage.

We’ve discovered many other devious traps embedded in Google Adwords, some of which are explained in “Is Google Evil, Or Just Devious? – Traps No. 1 & 2”, “Is Google Evil, Or Just Devious? – Trap No. 3” and “Is Google Evil, Or Just Devious? – Trap No. 3 (Cont)”.

But here are six steps that are absolutely essential for setting up an Adwords account. If you follow these six steps, your chances of success are greatly enhanced. You can also visit our blog site for many PPC, SEO & Social Media tips, tricks, secrets and advice, and/or you can sign up for our daily PPC, SEO and Social Medial “tip of the day” delivered directly to your inbox.

These six steps are born from years of PPC trial and error. We’ve learned the hard way, and we’re happy to share our experiences with you so you don’t have to. Read More »

The “Shock & Awe” of Remarketing/Retargeting

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Robert | Monday, August 9th, 2010

Filed under: Advanced, Basic, Intermediate, PPC Tips & Advice

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What Is Retargeting?:
Retargeting, or as Google Adwords calls it, Remarketing, is an effective means of delivering a display ad to people who have visited your site and completed, or not completed, a particular action.

For example, a simple use of retargeting would be to serve a display ad to someone who has visited your website but not signed up for a free trial (if you offer one). A more sophisticated use of retargeting would be serving a display ad to someone who made it partially through your shopping cart process but did not complete the purchase. In the latter case you could be very sophisticated and granular and serve a display ad for the very product the visitor ALMOST purchased but did not.

You can read more about how to set up a remarketing campaign by reading this previous blog titled: “Remarketing – Don’t Let Visitors Escape So Easily”.

Shock & Awe?:
Retargeting/remarketing is a very powerful concept in current-day display advertising because visitors to your website can be reminded of your company and its products and services for days, sometimes weeks, after initially visiting your website, even when they are visiting other websites at a later time that have nothing to do with your company, its products or its services. You can imagine how powerful this can be. Your display ad can essentially follow visitors to your website all around the internet reminding them about who your company is and what it has to offer.

Regardless of the effectiveness of this new kind of display advertising, you and others within your company have to be prepared for the shock & awe that will result once your ad starts to appear in various sites around the web. Read More »

Why Bounce Rate Is Bologna!

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Robert | Friday, July 30th, 2010

Filed under: Basic, Intermediate, PPC Tips & Advice

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What’s a good bounce rate?:
As it relates to pay per click search engine marketing (PPC SEM), if you’re wondering what a good bounce rate should be, or if you’re concerned that your bounce rate is too high, then you’re paying too much attention to the wrong metric.

Why Is Bounce Rate The Wrong PPC Metric To Monitor:
First, bounce rates vary wildly from website to website. So there’s no such thing as a “good” or a “bad” bounce rate. Secondly, bounce rate is a reflection of the number of people who visited your website and then left within a short period of time. From a PPC point of view, that data is better reflected in several other more important monitoring metrics. Read More »

How Google Analytics Can Be Dangerous!

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Robert | Monday, July 26th, 2010

Filed under: Advanced, Basic, Intermediate, PPC Tips & Advice

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Have You Noticed Lately?:
Have you noticed that the goal data in Google Analytics is different (often, very different) than the conversion data in Google Adwords? That’s because Google Analytics is a free product. As such it is not supported like Google Adwords, nor is it anywhere near as sophisticated as Google Adwords.

Google Analytics is good for getting a handle on trends, but should not be relied upon when trying to be accurate in counting goals and conversions.

Google Adwords, on the other hand, is the reporting mechanism that paying customers rely on, and is much more accurate and sophisticated than Google Analytics.

Relying only on Google Analytics will lead to incorrect conclusions and disastrous results. Read More »

Using PPC Parameters To Improve Sales

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Robert | Thursday, July 22nd, 2010

Filed under: Advanced, Intermediate, PPC Tips & Advice

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Top-of-Funnel Versus Bottom-of-Funnel Conversions:
Let’s first define what I mean by top-of-funnel (TOF) versus bottom-of-funnel (BOF) conversions. Conversions at TOF result in sales leads. Conversions at BOF result in actual sales. There are many techniques to optimize TOF conversions, some of which are mentioned in my previous blogs, one of which is, “Pay Per Click (PPC) Search Engine Marketing (SEM) Best Practices & Resulting Quality Score

However, in this blog I want to talk about BOF conversions and how to use Adwords and/or Yahoo! data to optimize conversions and COA at BOF. Read More »

Paying A Percentage Of PPC Media Spend Is Perverse

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Robert | Wednesday, July 21st, 2010

Filed under: Basic, Intermediate, PPC Tips & Advice

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The Emperor’s New Clothes:
I know the following is a likely to be an unpopular point of view among advertising agencies and other pay per click (PPC) advertising professionals, but it’s time to reveal that “the Emperor has no clothes!” Read More »

Can You Generate A Positive ROI With Adwords?

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Robert | Friday, July 16th, 2010

Filed under: Basic, Intermediate, PPC Tips & Advice

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Ready, Fire, Aim:
I find that many companies jump into Adwords and other PPC efforts without knowing what metrics they must hit to achieve a positive return on investment (ROI). They then become disappointed, confused, and worse, don’t know what to do to generate a positive ROI. If this sounds like you or your company, then you need to think about two things. First, how do you calculate the Adwords metrics you need achieve for a positive ROI, and second, can you get there? Read More »

Is Google Evil, Or Just Devious? – Traps No. 1 & 2

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Robert | Tuesday, July 13th, 2010

Filed under: Advanced, Basic, Intermediate, PPC Tips & Advice

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Is Google Evil?:
I admire Google. I admire the people who work for Google. If not for Google, our lives would be devoid of some of the richness the company has created & weaved into the fabric of our lives. However, when you scratch just below the surface there are clear instances that have no other explanation than to be self-serving, and worse, at the expense of Google’s advertising customers.

I don’t think Google is evil, but evidence suggests they sure can be devious at times. My favorite devilish examples are found on the Settings page. There, you will see a number of default settings that are clearly to Google’s benefit, but to the detriment of the unsuspecting advertiser.

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