Archive for Pay-Per-Click Advertising

Prepare for Enhancements Coming to Google AdWords

Wednesday, February 13th, 2013

Google AdWords is already allowing AdWords users to upgrade to the new “AdWords enhanced campaign.”

By June, ALL campaigns will be upgraded to this “enhanced” version of AdWords.  The enhancement will allow users to manage all campaigns, regardless of device (computer, tablet, mobile phone) in one place. This means the end of mobile campaigns.

If you are already struggling with managing your AdWords campaign, now is the perfect time to try our AdWords and PPC campaign management services.  Since your customers’ search habits differ depending on the device they’re using, we will ensure your campaign is set up and managed according to these search habits and the device they’re using, whether it’s an iPhone, iPad or a laptop computer.

Learn more about Search Concepts’ AdWords Management here.

The Last Days of Yahoo! Search Marketing

Thursday, September 16th, 2010

From Overture to Yahoo! Search Marketing and now MSN adCenter, Yahoo’s paid search results have been powered by many different interfaces over the years.  As of October 1st, MSN AdCenter will now power the paid search results of both Yahoo! and Bing.  Migration is already underway as Yahoo has been assisting in various campaign transfers.  AdCenter has an automated tool that will also take your existing Google or YSM campaigns and import them into their interface.  The Google AdWords option is suggested since there is better comptabilty between AdWords and AdCenter.

I sure do miss the classic Overture interface.  The bidding setup was a joy to advertisers, but along came Yahoo! Search Marketing, also known as the “Panama” interface.  I eventually came to appreciate this interface, despite its flaws.  If you’re a Safari user, you know what I’m talking about…

MSN AdCenter has always been my least favorite interface of the Big 3.  I hope they finally put some resources into it given the boost in users it’s about to receive.

Why You Should Never Use A “Flat-Fee” Pay-Per-Click Advertising Service

Wednesday, May 6th, 2009

Often, I receive calls from potential buyers looking for a “flat-fee” pay-per-click service. The majority of companies that offer ppc management services price services in the following manner: Management Fee + Click Budget charge directly by Google, Yahoo etc. Consumers often hate this pricing format because they’re being charged by two separate entities making the pricing seem confusing. But, there’s a reason why you want this as opposed to a “flat-fee.”

A loyal SEO client of mine recently emailed me saying he was considering dropping his own AdWords account for a service that “guaranteed top 3 placement in the sponsored listings” for one particular keyword. This placement would be 24/7 and would include unlimited clicks all for said “flat-fee.” Upon hearing this, I instantly knew something was up. I’ve seen these offerings for years now, and they still make my blood boil.

My client was told that for $650/mo. he would have top 3 placement for ONE keyword in both Google and Yahoo Sponsored Listings. Oh yes, don’t forget the $150 setup fee for ONE keyword and thus, one ad.

So, I started digging for the sake of my client. I researched the keyword being proposed, and I discovered the keyword was searched a whopping 10 times in Google per day. 10 times. Can you guess how many estimated clicks Google projected if your ad for this keyword was located in the top 3 positions? ZERO. Now, why on earth would my client be charged $650 a month for a keyword that received little to no clicks? In case you haven’t figured it out already, they are intentionally pocketing your monthly fee while setting up a keyword/ad that receives little to no click costs.

There are other tricks besides proposing keywords that draw little activity. These “flat-fee” companies can target your keyword/ad to your local area, even if your offering is nationwide, which also limits your potential clicks. Of course, every time you search the particular keyword, you see your ad and think everything is fine despite it only appearing locally not nationally. Ad scheduling can also take place.  They can schedule your ad to turn off throughout the day which can also limit activity. Overall, there are so many settings within AdWords that can discourage clicks making the “flat-fee” pure profit for these type of companies.

Here’s what you must have from a PPC management company. Keep in mind, Search Concepts offers all these elements when using our PPC management services.

1.  You want service fees and click costs distingushed. Click costs should be charged directly by Google/Yahoo!. That way you know you’re getting charged for clicks/traffic and receiving the true market value of each click.

2.  You need access to your account at all times. This allows you to check statistics and settings in case there’s any funny business taking place.

3. Make sure you have a wide variety of keywords. Don’t depend on one keyword for all your traffic.  Whether a keyword is searched one time a day or 1,000 times a day, you want exposure for it. A conversion from a low searched keyword almost always equals a higher ROI.

While writing this blog post, I received a call from a potential buyer looking for none other than a flat-fee pay-per-click service. I explained to the woman everything I’ve just stated and how there’s too much risk in pursuing a flat fee service, yet she didn’t seem to care. A friend of hers recommended a flat fee service so she refused to believe otherwise despite my longwinded explanation of why flat fee services are not consumer friendly.

At Search Concepts, we pride ourselves on being one of the select few companies that are honest about all practices in this field. We tell you what’s possible, what’s not possible so you can make the most informed purchase regardless if you choose our services or not. Feel free to contact us with any questions you might have regarding the search marketing industry. We’re happy to answer your questions and educate you, the consumer. We won’t even charge you a flat-fee for that.

How the Stimulus Plan Will Affect the Internet and SEO

Tuesday, February 3rd, 2009

Regardless of how you feel about the proposed Economic Recovery Bill, it will have ramifications that affect the Internet, and in turn the search industry, positively.В  The bill includes an astounding $9 billion to expand broadband Internet service to rural and underserved areas.В  One of President Obama’s major campaign promises was to expand the information superhighway to every corner of the land.В  Whether or not those areas are ready for that broadband service is another story – but it’s coming.В  Additionally, the stimulus package may include tax breaks for wireless companies that commit to expanding broadband coverage.

The United Kingdom also has a similar plan.В  It is likely that the UK government will step in and spend about ВЈ10 billion to support the expansion and development of a superfast broadband network.

In the past we have blogged about the expansion of online advertising and the wireless ubiquity of SEO.В  These stimulus packages, though maybe not as efficiently as the government hopes, will still lead to an increase in Internet users and, consequently, an increase in potential consumers for your business.В  Your business can take advantage of search engine optimization and reach those new users, whether they are in rural or urban areas, in the U.S. or the U.K., or even on a mobile phone.

A Brave New World: The Dominance of Internet Advertising

Thursday, December 25th, 2008

Google: an innovative, cutting edge tech company that encourages a casual work setting in the environmental friendly and trendy Googleplex.В  Procter & Gamble: the 2008 advertiser of the year that spends more than twice as much as the next advertiser on the list, has prospered since the 1800s, and only spends a tiny fraction of its ad budget online.В  These two companies recently initiated an employee-swap in an effort to learn from each other.В  So, what can we learn from them?

While the swap has been helpful for Google in terms of further educating their employees about marketing, it may be critical for P&G.В  Consumers ages 18 to 27 use the Internet 13 hours per week and only watch 10 hours of TV.В  Advertising on TV is still huge (look no further than the price of Superbowl ads), but P&G seems to understand that the future is online.В  Online searches for the word “coupon” have increased 50 percent in the past year, indicating that consumers are flocking to the Internet more frequently than ever.

Internet viewers are more active than passive TV viewers and thus are tougher to reach.В  It takes expertise to efficiently navigate the waters of online advertising.В  P&G understood that and went to Google for insight.В  Your business can look to Search Concepts with confidence for solutions to its online advertising needs.

Search Engine and SEO News Updates

Friday, October 17th, 2008

Google and Yahoo! have been involved in settlement discussions with the Department of Justice in an attempt to avoid an antitrust challenge to their proposed deal.В  We know that regardless of how the proposed deal unfolds, it will have significant ramifications in the online advertising community.В  In addition to the possibility of an approved or rejected deal, we could instead see a third result – a modified deal that would cap the volume of Google ads that Yahoo! could use and require more disclosure.В  Additionally, in an effort to alleviate some of the DOJ’s concerns, Google is seeking testimonials in support of the deal from large advertisers.В  Meanwhile, Microsoft is still interested in a Web search advertising deal with Yahoo!.

Google has also been busy on a different front.В  Although Google has not disclosed much about its plans, the hiring of former chief executive of DoubleClick suggests that Google plans to expand further into the display advertising market.В  Search Concepts offers both display and text advertising though our pay per click advertising services.

We have previously blogged about how the proliferation of mobile Internet use will make SEO increasingly important.В  Next week, the first phone using Google’s Android software will be released.

Pay-Per-Click Ad Testing: Data Doesn’t Lie

Monday, August 11th, 2008

When taking over the management of pay-per-click campaigns with a substantial accumulated history, it is important to examine the three primary factors of most any PPC campaign: keywords, ads, and landing pages. While all these elements are important, let’s just focus on ads.

To test the effectiveness of the current ad being used, ad testing must be implemented in each ad group. We like to implement the “show ads evenly over time” setting in order to get a true read of how each ad responds in an equal amount of time. One ad will eventually separate itself from the other by having a higher clickthrough rate. In other words, one ad simply encourages a response more often than the other.

Recently, we implemented ad testing in a client’s campaign in order to test the effectiveness of their current ad. After two weeks of testing, the new ad we implemented was the clear choice to become the permanent ad. The clickthrough rate was significantly higher and the conversion rate was higher as well. We presented this new-found data to the client, who surprisingly refused to let the older, less effective ad be removed.

In their words, they liked the older ad because it was catchy and similar to their competitor’s ads. They thought that if their competitor was doing something, then maybe they should be doing it too. We attempted to explain the data again, but to no avail.

In summary, the objective data doesn’t lie. Historical data should make campaign decisions such as this one rather easy. The takeaway is that you should be partial to the data for each ad, not the actual ad itself.