Archives for "User Tips & Info"

Posted by James Lee on 10th September 2014

Keyword bidding strategies for the seasonal business can be tricky

Seasonal businessWhen conversion cost is a primary consideration in selecting your bidding strategy, ROI based bidding tends to be one of the most popular approaches. This strategy can be extremely effective but there are a few pitfalls to avoid particularly if your business is seasonal and you utilize seasonal keywords. With the holiday shopping season just around the corner, you’ll soon be developing your seasonal ad campaigns. Before you do, I offer some tips and tricks for avoiding one of the pitfalls associated with seasonal keywords and an ROI based bidding strategy.

The challenge with seasonal keywords when using ROI based bidding is that they will be penalized for marginal performance during ‘off-season’ time periods and can only be ‘rescued’ manually with an inflated bid price. To avoid this pitfall and the need to manually ‘rescue’ keywords, it is necessary to use an alternative keyword bidding strategy, which is rank driven bidding with rules based on conversion count, cost per conversion, QS and CTR.

Here is an example of how this approach could be set up. First you would select ‘rank driven’ as the bidding strategy for your campaign and default max bid to control the top ceiling of your bid price. Next, you would group keywords into three tiers with two rules set based on cost per conversion. The top tier would have the lowest cost per conversion and be characterized by superior keyword performance. The bottom tier would represent an unacceptable cost per conversion. Because rank driven bidding is primarily controlled by the rank of ad position (1 to 10) it will keep keyword ads in play unlike ROI or conversion based bidding. Then when keyword performance returns to an acceptable level going into the sales season, it will adjust itself without human intervention.

There are two other approaches for controlling keyword bidding when using a rank driven bidding strategy. The first involves setting a max bid price of each tier group. For example, for the top tier you would assign the highest max bid price at 30% higher than the campaign default max bid. For the bottom tier you would apply a max bid that is 30% below the campaign default max bid. This adjustment of max bid allows rank driven bidding to be in check with cost per click while still setting target ad position.
See an example of this approach below.

Keyword group       Target rank    Max bid
Top tier                     1.5 or 2        $5
Campaign default     3                  $3
Bottom tier                5 to 10         $2

In addition, branding keywords are generally low cost and perform ideally. They can be set as the keyword level position goal with top rank, but with a lower max bid than the top tier group. For more info, sign in below or visit the site.

Posted by admin on 13th March 2014

How to Safeguard Rank Driven Bidding

ClickSweeper introduces Target Ranks 1.5 and 2.5 for more accurate placement at lower costs

As an online marketer that depends on rank (ad position on search result pages), there are times when you want to bid aggressively to get the maximum exposure, but want to avoid paying premium to be at the top. That’s why ClickSweeper has developed target ranks of 1.5 and 2.5 in hopes that this small enhancement will give you the comfort you need in setting and reaching your target goals.

In the ideal scenario, you would achieve the highest rank at the lowest cost. Unfortunately, this is unlikely. A target rank of one (1) may motivate competitors to aggressively raise their bid prices, thus increasing target bid prices higher and higher. In this case it would be helpful to bid between rank 1 and rank 2. This was not an option, until now.

Now with ClickSweeper you can target rank 1.5 or 2.5.  With this selection, you will lower the risk of bidding a premium bid price while still achieving top 3 ad positions.

ClickSweeper’s Rank Based bidding strategy offers two ways to safeguard bid price besides rank goal. Bid price is bounded by a max rank bid that you’re willing to pay, and one allows the target rank to be set based on one of keyword performance factor such as cost per conversion, CTR, quality score or conversion count.

With this new feature, ClickSweeper offers customizable automation to achieve your marketing goals at an affordable cost without demanding all your time.

For more information, visit us at www.ClickSweeper.com.

Posted by admin on 24th February 2014

Digital Marketing based on Signup Quality

There are many options when it comes to ad channel selection. While I am certain that you already utilize some form of ad performance tracking, your current method falls short if it does not measure marketing ROI.

One of the most commonly used key performance indicators or KPI for search marketing is cost per conversion (CPC) or cost per acquisition (CPA).  Below is an example of a typical search marketing KPI.

Typical SEM platform  

           Conversion        Click        Cost/Click        Ad Spend        Cost/Conv

Kw1            5                    200            $2.50                $500                   $100

Kw2           10                  400            $1.25                 $500                   $50

 

In the example above, a typical search marketing platform measures cost per conversion. In this example, the data indicates that keyword2 performs better than keyword1 based on cost per conversion performance.

However, by factoring in the quality of signups from your campaign, the results are different. This is illustrated in the table below.

Varazo SEM platform

           Conversion        Qualified        Disqualified        Sales Win        Cost/Score

Kw1           5                          3                          2                             2                       $41

                                       Score= 6           Score=0              Score=6     

 

Kw2         10                         3                          7                                1                     $55

                                       Score=6             Score= 0             Score=3      

 

In the example above the quality of signup by status such as Qualified, Disqualified and Sales Win is factored into the performance analysis.  The conversion score reflects the quality of signup, and the keyword‘s performance is measured by the sum of the quality score.

With this approach keyword1 shows better performance with lower cost/score than keyword2 and it results in a very different max bid update than the bid update when this data is not available.

While the concept is simple, implementing this signup quality logic into your SEM account can be complicated. You’ll need to find a PPC bid management system and lead source tracking system where both leads and lead source are tracked.  These two systems will then need to be integrated so that signup quality can be added to the PPC management system to optimize keyword max bids.

Varazo is a SEM integration platform that now offers this solution through its existing ClickSweeper, PPC management software, and our newly released ConversionSweeper, lead source analytics. Together these two platforms provide a simple solution for digital marketers who want to improve signup quality and to accurately measure return on their digital advertising.

If you thought about it or have an experience in integrating these two systems, please share your thought or experience in the comments below.

Posted by admin on 21st August 2012

Tips for maximizing search ad performance with Analytics data

More and more search marketers are seeing the benefits of web analytics based bidding, particularly Corporate marketers who often find they have low conversion rates and a limited number of strong performing keywords. If you are already using Google analytics, why not increase its power by using it to optimize bidding?

Long before most advertisers started linking analytics data to AdWords, we recognized the power that optimizing keyword bidding using analytics data could bring. We spent over a year developing, testing and perfecting the logic and rules for analytics based bidding. This powerful tool is now available in ClickSweeper. ClickSweeper is a sophisticated PPC management and campaign optimizer software solution designed to provide easy to use tools to help search marketers with common yet time consuming tasks. One of the many features of ClickSweeper is the ability to setup and manage bidding strategies based on your business goals. These bidding strategies include:

To illustrate how the ClickSweeper analytics based bidding works we’ve described a typical scenario.

You’ve set up your campaign performance goals and bidding rules but find that conversion count is low and there are only a handful of keywords that are performing well for conversion. As a result, you are limited in the number of optimization possibilities available.

With analytics based bidding you can rely on ClickSweeper’s logic to optimize bids based on the analytics data and quality rating. On the ClickSweeper Keyword page each keyword with its corresponding analytics data and quality rating are displayed side by side. On this page you can perform a number of tasks such as change bid price in real time, pause keywords or drive bid price based on ranking, all without leaving the page. If you prefer to manage bidding manually with analytics data, this can also be performed from the same page.

ClickSweeper analytics based bidding also offers automated bidding based on quality rating and the ability to set filters to pause keywords based on time on site or bounce rate. ClickSweeper automatically adjusts bids daily to meet the bidding criteria based on each quality tier. If conversion performance data is available, ClickSweeper makes another adjustment based on conversion performance such as rewarding keywords for excellent conversion performance and penalizing keywords for poor performance.

For more about ClickSweeper’s analytics based bidding, contact us today.

Posted by admin on 11th June 2012

3 keys to improved PPC profitability

Do you manage sponsored search ads but find it increasingly difficult to keep up with the latest tools and trends? Are you spending hours and hours poring over data to improve conversion rates only to see minimal improvements? If you answered yes, read below to find our tips on how you can improve PPC performance by focusing your efforts to optimize keywords, streamline bid management and improve your quality score.

Optimize keywords

With Google AdWords’ keyword research tool, generating a list of relevant keywords is now as easy as the click of a button. While generating a long list of potential keywords is a good start, you can’t stop there. The list must be optimized in order to have a positive impact on conversions and avoid wasting campaign money on poor performing keywords. In order to improve performance it is necessary to actively purge or demote unsuccessful keywords, optimize keyword matching type and add in negative keywords in order to eliminate unwanted search strings and more closely target your keywords.

Streamline keyword bid management

One task that never goes away from PPC management is keyword bid management. Since your business competes with others to win more views at the lowest cost, keyword bid management must be done aggressively and consistently.  This task is as dynamic as any other financial analysis, since there are many factors that determine ad visibility, the cost of a click and the cost of a conversion.  Effective keyword bid management can be complex and time consuming. However, since keyword bid management is based on mathematical calculations where past performance is a good predictor of future performance, it is well suited to automated tools. While Google AdWords offers free bid management features, we believe these are inadequate as they limit your PPC intelligence due to Google’s black box approach.  For success in keyword bidding, it is important to be able to analyze all of the potential variables that impact conversions including those provided by conversion tracking and web Analytics.  Continue Reading

Posted by admin on 14th February 2012

How important is ad position for paid search ad?

Is a top ad position critical for achieving results in paid search? I’ll present an argument here that ad position is often, but not always, the most important factor in achieving results with paid search campaigns. Let me explain.

Marketers who utilize paid search advertising typically have one of two objectives:

  • Building brand awareness
  • Lead Generation and sales

The importance of ad position depends on which of these objectives you are trying to achieve. If your primary goal is to build brand awareness, achieving a top ad position is critical in a similar way that achieving page rank is critical in SERP (search engine results page). Commanding a top position represents dominance in the market, financial strength and marketing power. Securing a top position will increase brand awareness and generally translates into more clicks but at a higher cost per click. More people will see your ad but less than half of them will click. If your goal is brand awareness, this strategy can produce the desired results. Continue Reading

Posted by James Lee on 1st September 2010

What’s wrong with my PPC campaign?

Maybe it’s not your PPC campaign at all. If you’ve carefully researched your keywords, compiled a comprehensive list of negatives, matched up the best landing pages to your tightly organized adgroups, written killer ad copy, and the conversions still aren’t coming in, it’s time to think about other factors that could be sabotaging your profitability. (If you hate criticism about your website, you’ll probably want to stop reading here.)

If you’re a web merchant, the problem could very well lie somewhere in the shopping experience you provide. Your landing page, shopping basket, site speed, and pricing could all be playing a role.  Before writing off PPC as a loss, check to make sure these components of your site aren’t the problem. Continue Reading

Posted by James Lee on 11th August 2010

When PPC is not a good fit

Like all forms of advertising, pay per click has its limitations. We here at ClickSweeper have been in pay per click for a while, and we’ve seen all types of businesses try their hand at PPC. Some have succeeded, others have not. In the interest of making your online marketing efforts as successful as possible, we’re going to share with you some of the things we’ve seen repeatedly in unsuccessful PPC campaigns. Don’t let this be you!

1. Low budget, high cost clicks.  The days of super cheap clicks are mostly gone. In competitive fields, like insurance, web design, and legal help, you could end up paying $5 or more for a single click. If you’re on a very tight budget, say $10 a day for a total of $300 a month, your advertising money isn’t going to buy many clicks before running out. Continue Reading

Posted by on 19th July 2010

4 ClickSweeper Features that Make PPC Management Easier

Before we came up with ClickSweeper, we used vendor platforms to manage our PPC ads. And while we might confess to being a little biased about our PPC management software, we’ve found from our experience using both that managing PPC accounts is a lot less frustrating and time-consuming with ClickSweeper. There are some small but nifty features we’re especially fond of. Did you miss any of these?

1. Being able to see landing page URLs without navigation. One of the things we hated about Adwords was not being able to see the landing page URL without actually clicking on the ad. Landing pages are so important to the success of your campaign that you need to know which one you’re testing for which ad. Likewise, if you need to update a particular URL, you can identify the ads that share a URL at a glance. Believe us, when you have lots of ads, not having to click on each one is a major bonus. Continue Reading

Posted by James Lee on 12th July 2010

A Guide to Common Acronyms

If you’re just getting into PPC — pay per click, that is — you might find yourself a little lost in all the acronyms being thrown about. Here at ClickSweeper, we’ve assembled a friendly guide to common acronyms you’re likely to encounter as you delve into PPC.

CPC: cost per click. The CPC refers to the dollar amount you pay every time someone clicks your ad.  How high or low your CPC is will depend on how competitive your industry or keywords are, your click through rate (CTR), and other factors.

CPM: cost per thousand [impressions]. For certain types of content network ads, you can opt to pay per thousand impressions (times your ad is shown) rather than by click. The minimum CPM Google allows is .25.

CPV/CPA: cost per conversion/cost per acquisition. The CPV is calculated by dividing the amount of money spent on advertising by the number of conversions. E.g., if you spent $1,000 in the month of June on clicks and had a total of 100 conversions, the CPV is $10. Continue Reading

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