Before I left the NFL Experience, billed as “… pro football’s interactive theme park. …” last Thursday night, I thought I found the perfect place to pick up an extra Chicago Bear’s shirt to bring my team good luck for the big game. (This strategy backfired: It’s not the Defense’s, or Grossman’s fault: it’s mine. And for those of you that only tuned in for the commercials, the Bears were the team in the dark jerseys.)
Inside a massive tent, which could have housed every item from the historic Marshall Field’s department store in downtown Chicago, lurked every piece of NFL, Bears and Colts paraphernalia ever made. There were jerseys, hats, helmets, footballs and jogging suits adorned with the SuperBowl XLI and Colts and Bears logos. As I took it all in, it quickly became apparent that although there were thousands of items for the big game, the selection was limited. While there were many styles and colors, almost every item included a team logo with both teams.
You could buy a Chicago Bears SuperBowl shirt or hat, but right there across from the insignia of my beloved Bears was an ugly, blue horseshoe (The Colts logo.)
Are you wondering how this translates to you SEM efforts? It’s quite simple:
1. Know your customers. In this case, the NFL was on the right path, most people that come to a SuperBowl game are more interested in the event and not the individual teams. But there were fans of each team there who would have appreciated some more team specific options, and like me, walked out of
there without buying anything. Remember when McDonalds only served hamburgers? How many sales are you missing by not looking at a more diversified product mix? Do follow up research on your customers; ask them questions about their interests and how they spend their time online.
2. Keep an eye on your business. Use an analytics package that can help you track what your customers are doing. How did they come to the site and what keywords were they looking for? Which keywords and engines have the best ROI? Looking at your data and understanding it is the equivalent to walking around and watching your customers in a brick and mortar store. Are they searching through the racks or simply breezing through the aisles?
3. Interact with your customers. If your customers are abandoning the shopping process — find out why. Are your prices too high? Is your site too difficult to navigate? Do they try very hard to buy from you or do they rarely browse through your inventory? Do they look diligently through your selections
and compare items? Leverage surveys and user registration data. E-mail your customers or pick up the phone and ask them what they like about your site and what they don’t. If you talked to one customer a month, what kind of free feedback and consultation could you get for your business?
The bottom-line is that an effective PPC campaign only can do so much to generate extremely targeted traffic to your site, but you need to invest time and effort into what happens when your customers arrive on your doorstep.