Search Marketing: General

5 New Year’s resolutions for your PPC campaigns

It’s never too late for New Year’s resolutions, so why not give your PPC campaigns a little New Year’s love? In this article, I’ll provide suggestions to tune up your campaigns in 2018 and get them firing on all cylinders. 1. Review your ad copy Upgrading decent ad copy into fantastic ad copy almost always leads to better campaign performance, driving more sales and increasing conversions. In my opinion, it’s some of...

Read More

Comparing two performance marketing tools/agencies

As performance marketers, we’re conditioned to want to test everything. From the impact of feed titles to the incrementality of each channel, we want to be sure that we’re making the right choice before we commit all our resources to something. That goes for deciding which tools/agency to use as well. Moving your performance marketing activities from one tool/agency to another (or picking one to start with) is a big commitment...

Read More

Understanding AdWords keyword match types for manufacturers

In a previous column, I addressed the challenges paid search advertising can present to industrial manufacturers who sell capabilities versus stock products. Another challenge is the AdWords help files themselves. As an advertising platform, AdWords is geared more to retailers — when a platform uses common retail products to illustrate keyword strategies, it’s often hard to see how the example relates to keywords for complex manufacturing capabilities. For example, under Basic Tips...

Read More

How to reverse-engineer your online advertising strategy

Online advertising experts love to talk about the importance of matching your landing page content to your ads. And you’ll get no argument from me — it’s a great way to improve the performance of your online advertising. I mean, it just makes sense. People click on your ad because the messaging resonates with them. If you have the same messaging on your landing page, that should resonate with these users...

Read More

Our top SEM columns of 2017

Though paid search has long since cemented its place as a pillar of digital marketing, changes in technology and consumer behavior have continued to reshape the PPC landscape and keep search marketers on their toes. In 2017, we saw the last of “standard” text ads in AdWords as expanded text ads, introduced in 2016, became the new norm. We also said goodbye to the literal definition of “exact” as Google expanded...

Read More

6 ways ad agencies can thrive in an AI-first world

Artificial intelligence (AI) and machine learning have long been part of PPC — so why are AI and machine learning all of a sudden such hot topics? It is, in part, because exponential advances have now brought technology to the point where it can legitimately compete with the performance and precision of human account managers. I recently covered the new roles humans should play in PPC as automation takes over. In this...

Read More

Auction Insights 3: The final script

Who would have thought that Auction Insights could inspire an entire TRILOGY? Well, if you know AdWords, I suppose it’s not a huge shock that our original script has had to undergo a few adaptations over the last couple of years. Google does like to keep us PPC practitioners on our toes! Changes to AdWords aside, it’s always nice to spruce things up. Optimization is an infinite process, after all. So, please...

Read More

How your website redesign can sabotage your paid search efforts

Recently, my PPC agency almost declined to take on a new client because the client’s website was so severely outdated. The site looked bad, was difficult to use and didn’t have an easy way to convert prospects. But when we learned that the client was in the process of redesigning this website, we agreed to move forward. This scenario suggests that when clients announce a website redesign, it’s good news for...

Read More

2-step methodology for dealing with PPC performance downturns

The most important thing I’ve learned from my 15 years of PPC experience is that sooner or later, account performance will take a downturn. When that day comes, we must be prepared to deal with the consequences of performance not meeting expectations. These consequences could range from stakeholders losing trust in your abilities to receiving ultimatums to “fix performance or else,” and worst-case scenario, someone else being brought in to...

Read More

Google’s all-new, quite counterintuitive guide to ad testing

Over 2 1/2 years ago, I wrote about how ad rotation works in AdWords. Since then, a whole lot has changed. Most recently, we’ve simplified the options for ad rotation. Let’s take a closer look at how ad rotation works now and what that means for ad testing. How AdWords picks which ads to show The goal of ad-serving in AdWords is to deliver a tailored message that meets a searcher’s needs....

Read More