The ROI Revolution Blog

Consider the Benefits of Google's Trusted Stores

September 4, 2012


Google Trusted Stores is designed to help customers easily find merchants who offer a superior online shopping experience.

Google is making an extra push to expand their Trusted Stores program with the roll out of Google Shopping. This badge will be shown next to your listings across Google properties, including the new Google Shopping.

Google also provides $1,000 purchase protection for all Google Trusted Stores as reassurance to shoppers.

Top 3 PPC Failure Points

June 4, 2012


While there's seldom one simple problem that defines under-performing AdWords campaigns, the following 3 PPC failure points are among the more common we uncover when performing AdWords account reviews:

Extend Your Best Season with Remarketing

February 13, 2012

remarketRemarketing can extend your busy season by giving you access to your past website visitors after they leave your site. However, without a thoughtful implementation, your remarketing effectiveness is severely crippled.

Here are three tips to get you started:

PPC Ad Writing Contest by Marketing Experiments

January 30, 2012

champ-trophyOur friends at Marketing Experiments are working with one of our clients on their marketing content strategy. They're inviting everyone to compete in this creative experiment.

Read about their Ad Writing Contest and then submit your best entry as a comment to their blog post.

From their post:
"The trouble with a content strategy is that it is very difficult to create content, and very difficult to predict what content will resonate with your customers.

You could spend a lot of time creating high-quality content only to find out later that another approach would have been more profitable.

To help provide clarity to their content strategy, we are going to run some PPC ads to 'take the temperature,' in a sense, of the people who are searching...

The results of this experiment will guide their content strategy, but I'm sure we'll end up testing a few of the winners in the rest of their paid search campaigns as well.

The winner will be announced during their next web clinic on February 1st, 2012: Online Advertising Forensics: We investigate how and why a text-based PPC ad produced 47% more conversions. Click the link to sign up for this free clinic!

Google Privacy Policy Overhaul: Reflections for Online Marketers

January 25, 2012

privacy defnGoogle's upcoming privacy policy overhaul addresses two themes:

1. Providing users with more intuitive functionality across Google properties (Search, Gmail, YouTube, etc.), and

2. Providing advertisers with more relevant targeting options across Google properties.

The key distinction here is "across Google properties."

While the most privacy-conscious users may be concerned with the changes, for advertisers there is nothing but upside. Google's updated privacy policy opens the door to more cost-effective targeting to your most responsive traffic across Google properties and devices.

YouTube TrueView Video Ads: Only Pay For Interested Viewers

November 29, 2011

youtubemagnifyYouTube has launched a new ad format out of beta: TrueView Video Ads. The basic concept is that the user has a choice whether or not to continue watching the ad. The advertisers only pays when the user watches at least 30 seconds of the ad (or to completion, whichever comes first).

This new format is referred to as a TrueView in-stream ad. Long-form YouTube videos are eligible for the TrueView in-slate ad format. With in-slate, the user is given a choice to either watch a longer commercial video ad before the primary video begins, or see regular commercial breaks during the video.

According to Google's onesheet on TrueView (pdf), in-stream ad viewers choose to watch an ad 15-45% of the time. Some advertisers have seen 3-4x higher CTR's with TrueView than with other video ad formats.

YouTube Promoted Video Ads are being renamed "TrueView in-search" and "TrueView in-display" depending on where they show.

Such a shift in video ad delivery is sure to start affecting how video ads are composed. Advertisers need to front-end-load the "interesting" parts to entice the viewer to watch. Also, given that you only pay when someone chooses to watch the video, the proportion viewers from your ideal target audience will be higher.

Google Plus One: How AdWords Advertisers Can Prepare

April 13, 2011

plusoneGoogle recently announced the launch of their latest social initiative: Google +1 (Plus One).  Still in beta, Google +1 consists of a tiny icon next to each and every organic and paid search listing that, when clicked, communicates your stamp of approval for others to see.

Google +1 has strong implications for all AdWords campaigns -- the number of "+1's" will show alongside each ad, which is sure to increase the clicks.  Yet there is one important nuance to this that is sure to leave many advertisers unprepared...

Remarketing: Recycle Your Web Traffic

November 11, 2010

recycle your web traffic Remarketing is perhaps the hottest online marketing topic of 2010, especially since it is now "available to the masses" as a feature of Google AdWords.

The concept isn't too difficult to understand -- with remarketing you can tag anyone who visits a page on your site and then show them your ads when they are browsing the Internet.  Since they have already been to your site, these ads usually have some extra pull.

While you can set up and launch a remarketing campaign within Google AdWords with relative ease, there are definitely some strategies you'll want to employ.

Here are a couple to get you started:

How to Place Ads on YouTube with Google AdWords: Part 2

June 14, 2010


In Part 1 of this series, I showed how to launch YouTube promoted videos through Google AdWords.  When you promote one of your videos, you are paying YouTube to funnel more traffic to the video... but the traffic still stays on YouTube.  (Of course, you can include a call-to-action link in your video that goes to your website, but that is more a feature of the video than a specific advertising strategy.)

You probably want to do more than just get people to watch one of your videos in an environment controlled by YouTube.  You want to get people to come to your website where they can take a desired action and you can make money.

There are multiple ways you can get your ads to show on YouTube searches, inside and alongside other people's videos.  With the right targeting, this can be a very profitable way to take advantage of YouTube's enormous amount of traffic.

How to Place Ads on YouTube with Google AdWords: Part 1

May 28, 2010

In search volume alone, YouTube is the #2 search engine behind Google itself.  Yet even with its gigantic size, it is easy for YouTube to get passed up by online advertisers.  Many advertisers ignore the opportunity due to the convoluted process required to explicitly target YouTube with ads.  This means there is less competition for ad space on YouTube and great rewards for those who can crack the code.
In this post I hope to clear up the confusion and tell you exactly how to get your ads showing on YouTube.

5 Step Google Initial Quality Score Checklist

December 16, 2009

quality_control.jpgYou don't get a second chance to make a good first impression. The moment you upload your new campaigns & ad groups, even if paused, Google gives you an initial quality score. If it's below average you'll be paying more per click until Google has enough data for your actual performance to determine your quality score.

If you don't come out of the gate with your best foot forward, you'll pay a premium on your first 100+ clicks. Worse, you may be tempted to give up on a keyword prematurely based on astronomical bid prices. Pay attention to the checklist below when launching new campaigns, ad groups or keywords into your AdWords account.

The good news is that all these suggestions won't just help your initial quality score, but should actually increase the long-term quality of your AdWords campaigns.

Here's how to get the best possible initial quality scores in Google:

5 Calculated Risks to Strengthen Your PPC Advertising

August 13, 2009


Investing money in online advertising always carries some level of risk. Whenever you increase a bid price, it is a calculated risk that the additional spend will produce more profitable sales. 

 Of any form of advertising, PPC carries the least risk since success metrics are available almost immediately. Even so, there is a temptation to minimize all risk.

Even though the following 5 tips are all low-risk & high reward, they are often considered too risky by weak-kneed advertisers. 

 These are the exact risks you should be taking if you want to strengthen your profits.

1.  Be liberal with your daily budget

Are you making direct sales through PPC advertising? If so, what use do you have for a campaign budget? Keywords often have seasonal and/or news-related spikes in traffic. When setting a conservative budget, you risk missing out on the revenue this additional traffic would generate.

The potential sales loss of a constrained budget poses more risk to your bottom line than some crazy clicking event of unqualified traffic. You can always scale back your bids if the traffic decreases in profitability. An unexpected surge in profitable traffic, on the other hand, is usually hidden in historical reports of lost impression share. Your budget should probably be at least double your average daily spend.

AdWords Conversions: The One vs. Many-Per-Click Breakdown

June 25, 2009

number-one.jpgThere's a lot of confusion regarding Google's recent change to conversion metrics with the AdWords conversion tracker.  Previously a "1" in the "Conversion" column would tell you there was at least one conversion that happened within 30 days of that date. You were happy with this limited knowledge.

Messy and/or complex data was disguised as clean & simple data.  The "1" was all you knew.  If the user clicked an ad and purchased something, you'd see a "1."  If the user bookmarked the page with the conversion tracking script and went back to it a week later, you'd still see a "1."  If another purchase was made two weeks later, you'd still see a "1."  Simple, right?

In early April, Google exposed some of the potential mess to be more in line with the way conversions and transactions are tabulated in DoubleClick and other online ad platforms.  They changed the name of "Conversions" to "Conversions (1-per-click)" and added a new metric called "Conversions (many-per-click)".  While the 1-per-click conversion spot can only be filled once, the many-per-click conversions are incremented whenever any of your conversion scripts run within 30 days after a click.

Under the new system, consider the following scenarios and what conversions would be tracked for each:

Advanced Bid Management Tactics

May 5, 2009

Search Engine Land just published a new article of mine on AdWords bid management. In the article I put a new spin on tracking conversion values in AdWords. I also touch on the advantage of ad group level bid management.

Have a read if you want to learn more about how lifetime customer value can be recorded in AdWords and how to do "portfolio" bid management to make decisions on groups of low-volume keywords.

Two Simple Ways to Boost Customer Value for Subscription-Based Companies

March 30, 2009

money-people.jpgWith the ever increasing competitive nature of Google AdWords, businesses that rely on recurring revenue from a membership or software-as-a-service (SaaS) subscription model need advanced marketing tactics to stay alive. But merely staying afloat shouldn't be an option -- your goal should be total market domination!

Yet there are unique marketing challenges subscription-based companies face when acquiring new customers. First, it's common to offer a free trial to get new members. Money isn't collected for weeks or months. When marketing bills are due before revenue is collected, this can cause serious cash flow problems.

When you finally do start collecting money from your customers, each monthly payment is only a fraction of the lifetime value of the customer. If you don't have smart marketing or exceptional cash reserves, your custom acquisition will be needlessly hamstrung. All things being equal, those who can afford to spend the most up front to acquire a new customer will dominate their market.

The following two tactics are relatively simple to implement and will dramatically boost your average customer value which will put you in a position to out-market your competition.

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