Articles written in August, 2009

August 31 2009

Blending Targeting


When running a pay-per-click campaign, many advertisers have a specific demographic of customers they would like to reach. Selecting the appropriate demographic is not only easy but it allows you to broadcast your message to the exact audience you are trying to target. Many search engines such as Yahoo allow you to target your audience by age, location, even income level.

A blend of the basic targeting options can produce good quality traffic. Using targeting features in conjunction with a behaviorally targeted media buy could produce an enhanced volume of qualified traffic. Behavioral targeting uses information collected on a searchers web-browsing behavior. Some these behaviors include the pages they have visited and the previous searches they have made. A user’s online behavior is evaluated when displaying ads to that them.

It’s practical to believe that behavioral targeting can deliver your ads to the users who are most likely to be interested. The other forms of targeting include geography and demography (mainly age, gender, income level). Behavioral targeting can increase the impact of your ad messaging.

Yahoo recently introduced Yahoo! Retargeting in an effort to help advertisers allocate marketing dollars efficiently to their targeted audience, hence increasing the effectiveness of online advertising expenses. Yahoo! Retargeting is an online advertising platform that monitors prospects who have visited your site before and tries to bring them back by displaying your ads the next time the searcher is on a Yahoo network. This is an attempt to convert users into customers and customers into repeat buyers.

Yahoo is one of the first search engines to introduce a behavioral tool that can be used with their other targeting options within Yahoo Sponsored Search.  For more information about Yahoo’s other targeting options, read Enhancements to Yahoo’s Targeting Features.

August 25 2009

Dangers of Keyword Insertion


Keyword Insertion or Dynamic Text is a feature that is offered by Google, Yahoo and MSN for the creation of ad copy. It helps to make ads more relevant. In order to use keyword insertion, you will need to insert a code into the ad text. Then, once a keyword is searched, it will automatically replace the code with the keyword that triggered the ad. Keyword insertion has many benefits including increasing relevancy of your ads. However, there are many times when keyword insertion should be used with caution or not at all.

First, many advertisers might choose to bid on misspellings. This can be a cost-effective and strategic way to get more customers to your site, especially since there should be minimal competition. If your keyword is misspelled, then the dynamic text will also be misspelled in your ad copy. It is best to not use keyword insertion when you have misspellings as keywords, especially when it comes to your branded or trademarked terms.

Another case where keyword insertion may not be best is when you are bidding on keywords that are not relevant to the rest of your ad copy. For example, the ad below is talking about visiting Barbados, but the headline says italy vacations. This is a clear case of when you should not use keyword insertion.


Is everyone else using keyword insertion? When compiling research for ad copy, it is always a good idea to see what your competitors are doing. If you see that every ad has the same headline, it is probable that your competitors are all using keyword insertion. This is a great time to make your ad copy stand out.

Keyword insertion is an element that can be used to boost your click through rate and even your quality score; however there can be dangerous pitfalls to using this feature.

August 20 2009

Your Landing Page Matters


I cannot stress enough the importance of having a solid landing page to direct website visitors to. This is especially true when you are running a Cost Per Click (CPC) Campaign. If you are going to pay to drive a visitor to your site, you ought to make sure the visitor is sent to a page that clearly and concisely represents not only your offerings, but more importantly the offering that this particular visitor was searching for. In other words, it is rather frustrating for a searcher to click on an ad for a pair of Nike shoes and instead be sent to a page for Nike shirts. If you’re lucky, your visitor will be patient enough to go through your navigation and locate the Nike shoes page they should have been sent to in the first place. More than likely, however, the searcher you already paid for will just click on the back browser and find another ad. So how can online retailers prevent bounces like this from occurring? Although there is no way to guarantee a low bounce rate, there are steps you can take to improve it and your landing pages are a great place to start.

A good landing page will possess a clear cut call to action. What do you want your visitors to do? Examples: Click here to receive your coupon, Fill out this form to generate your free report, Enter your email address to be added to our monthly newsletter, etc.

In addition and beyond just the importance of user experience, Google very specifically factors in landing page quality and relevance as part of their algorithm. This algorithm determines where your ads will appear and how much you will have to bid. Therefore, having an effective landing page will not only improve the experience for your searchers, but also afford you the ability to garner better online real estate and at a lower CPC.

What are you waiting for? Get busy and start to improve your landing pages!

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