Saturday, April 19, 2008

10 PPC Tips Improve Advertising

1. Define your goals and what strategy you want to use to reach these goals. Also what metric will you use to define your campaign a success and consider your goal to have been met.

2. Gather Data. There is nothing more important than making informed decisions. I have seen too many account owners and account managers make decisions based a current trend instead of looking at the bigger picture. Gathering data should not be limited to a single online source but open your eyes and look at every possible influence on your business rather than just what your keyword search volumes from Overture or AdWords are showing. Customers are a great source of data and the savvy search marketer is always in tune with his customers needs and plans accordingly.

3. Keyword level Tracking. As, I mention in point 2 it is important for you to gather data to make informed decisions. For this I highly recommend using a 3rd party tracking system. I will review my thoughts on some tools in an upcoming post.

4. Bid on approriate keywords. Its a general theory and common misconception that the more keywords you bid on the better. Well theoretically you will drive more traffic to your site but it will not be relevant. Start with your base group of keywords and expand on those. This will not be a one time process, it will be constantly evolving. This is another reason for the importance of Keyword level tracking. It gives you the ability to expand on words that are performing well, they maybe unexpected words that initially would have not made your list.

5. Target proper landing pages. Finding the ideal landing page can take some trial and error, but for a general rule, it is best to use as relevant a page as possible. This is not always the case and I will discuss some examples soon, but it is a good general rule to follow. Too many people go straight to the home page and their conversion rate suffers badly.

6. Scare factor. Avoid flashy images, videos, bright colors or music on your landing pages. These cause an instant reaction for users to click the back button and leave your site immediately, costing you money!

7. Easy Landing pages. Yes, the third point about landing pages is make sure they are focused enough to get the user to do what you want. Make the 'buy now' or 'add to cart' buttons very obvious, do not bury them below the fold. It is also ok to have multiple buttons at the top middle and bottom of your product page, if the page requires vertical scrolling.

8. Stick to the majors. Sure you can go out there and sign up with every engine or PPC program but are you really going to see the return on your investment. I'm not only talking about the lower numbers of traffic, which you maybe able to scrape some conversions from, but the time it is going to take for you to manage these accounts may not be worth it. LookSmart, Kanoodle, Findwhat, BlowSearch etc do not have the tools developed to help you operate efficiently and their click fraud systems are a little less developed which may lead wasted funds. So for the time being I would keep my money in Yahoo, MSN, Ask, and *gasp* Google.

9. Prepare for seasons. It is always a wise idea to prepare campaigns that fit the seasons. For the upcoming holidays you should probably already have a few holiday ads and ad groups with holiday terms in the works. It is also beneficial to create a holiday ad group that has some of your best producing words paired with some holiday focused ads. This also applies to other seasons that affect your consumers shopping habits

10. More data. Did I already say this? Well I can't stress it enough. If you are just using the consoles that Google Adwords and Yahoo Search Marketing provide, you are missing a lot of important information. Think of it as going to Best Buy to purchase a plasma tv. You don't just purchase the first plasma tv you see, right? Of course not. I will expand on which stats packages are the best for making informed decisions in an upcoming post.

source : Marketing Shift