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Saturday’s Quick Links

Triple Your Google AdWords CTR Overnight by Doing Nothing, Guaranteed!
I have never tried this before and it’s definitely a new idea to me. If you want to know when you AdWords data is accurate or not , just create another ad in the split group that is an exact copy of the on of the ads being tested.

 

Your Google Search Results Are Personalized
Like it or not, your Google search result you see when searching at Google is personalized when you signed in to your Google Account. What this means is that the search results you see is not based on the organic ranking entirely but they are tailored to your past search habit.

 

What is the Best PPC CTR?
Here’s another AdWords tips for you. The best PPC CTR depends on many important factors. The single most important factor is whether you are looking at ads on Google search or ads on Google’s content network. The best PPC CTR on Google search is way higher than ads on Google’s content network.

 


Burning Out

When you are self employed, you alone motivate yourself. There is nothing stopping you doing anything you please besides working. What’s going to keep you working when other people are practically dragging you away to do these things?

 

Andy Hagans’ Ultimate Guide to Linkbaiting and Social Media Marketing
Yea damn that link baiting NOT. Actually link baiting does not have to be a bad thing. Matt Cutts the Google engineer even says so. You got to read this here.

Andy Hagan has a post up about creating a successful link baiting campaign. In his analysis, he finds that the “single most important aspect of a link bait piece is its title.”

5

Funniest AdWords Ads – Weird Things On Sale

I was searching for something on Google this afternoon and up came several interesting AdSense ads that made me laugh.

The advertiser probably dumps thousand of keywords into their AdWords account and uses the Dynamic Keyword Insertion feature to auto generate the ads.

This,as you’ll see below, can lead to some very interesting word combinations and often don’t make much sense. This happens all the time on Google, very funny still.

 

 

Get a helping hand from a used brain.

used-brains.gif

 

Buy used women from AuthenticTraders.com

used-women.gif

 

How about a used tampon?

used-tampon.gif

 

Relax, take a deep breath.

soiled-underwear.gif

 

Get foot fungus for free!

foot-fungus.gif

 

Your1Love can predict the exact name of your true love that’s going to die

death.gif

 

Buy a used coffin from eBay

coffins.gif

 

Need extra money? How about selling your stuff for FREE

sell-free.gif

 

Get dog waste from AuthenticTraders.com

dog-waste.gif

 

You can even buy an arsehole at a bargain price from BizRate.com

arshole.gif

 

Finally, spend over $25 on human remains at Amazon and get free shipping!

human-remains.gif

1

Google Introduces Better Payment Structure For Referrals

If you are currently promoting Google AdSense and AdWords referrals, now you have a good reason to push your promotion effort harder and know that you’ll compensated fairly for your effort.

Over at the Inside AdSense blog, Google has announced a new pricing structure for both programs.

You can now earn up to $255 – up from $100 previously – for each publishers you referred to the AdSense program. You’ll also get a chance to earn $2,000 bonus from your referral effort.

Here’s how it works:

  • When a publisher who signed up for Google AdSense through your referral earns their first $5 within 180 days of sign-up, you will be credited with $5.
  • When that same publisher earns $100 within 180 days of sign-up and is eligible for payment, you will be credited with an additional $250.
  • If, in any 180-day period, you refer 25 publishers who each earn more than $100 within 180 days of their respective sign-ups and are all eligible for payout, you will be awarded a $2,000 bonus (bonus payouts are limited to 1 per year).

If you are promoting the AdWords referrals, you’ll be happy to know about the new pricing structure for this program.

  • When an advertiser you refer spends $5 within 90 days of sign-up (in addition to the $5 sign-up fee) you will be credited with $5.
  • When that same advertiser spends $100 within 90 days of sign-up, you will be credited with an additional $40.
  • If, in any 180 day period, you refer 20 advertisers who each spend more than $100 within 90 days of their respective sign-ups, you will be awarded a $600 bonus (bonus payments are limited to 1 per year).

Interestingly, Google has decided to still reward you for referrals you made before this new pricing structure was announced.

These rules will also apply to users that you have already referred but who have not yet reached one of the new earning/spend thresholds. For example, if you referred an AdSense publisher who has currently earned $2.00, you will be paid $5.00 if that publisher reaches the $5.00 mark. But, if you have referred an AdSense publisher who has already earned $10.00, you will not be paid $5.00 retroactively for that referral reaching the $5.00 mark. However, should that publisher eventually reach the $100.00 earnings mark within 180 days, you will be paid $250.00.

Google also reminded you not to click your own referral ads and refer yourself for any product as you won’t get paid for this.

In a related news, Google has dropped the Picasa referral program from the AdSense Referrals setup pages.

There’s no official word about this yet but it looks like Picasa has been integrated into the Google Pack Referral program.

Whether the Google Pack referral commission will be increased to $3 (from $2) to take into account of the Picasa referral commission is remained to be seen.

Unlike the AdSense ads, you can specifically call attention to your AdSense referral units. Yes, you can ask your readers to click you referral ads on purpose without fear of being penalized by Google.

Actively endorse the products you refer. Unlike with AdSense for content ads, we encourage you to endorse referral products by calling attention to the button or text link. If you believe in the quality of the product that you’re referring, feel free to let your users know! Of course, in line with our policies, you may not click your own ads nor encourage conversions for deceitful reasons.

3

9 Keyword Research Tips to Help You Expand Your Existing PPC Keyword List Dramatically

Your keyword list plays a crucial role in your pay per click campaign success. Your goal is to show up on the first page of search results for as many related keywords as possible and these tips will help you do just that.

Once you have your main keyword list ready, you can expand it further by adding keyword variations such as misspellings, abbreviations, plurals etc.

In addition to finding keyword variations that you may never come up with using the normal keyword research tools, you can now target less competitive keywords while at the same time save money on your advertising budget. It’s not surprising if you find some of these keywords convert well.

 

1. Use Misspellings and Typos

Online searches sometimes misspell words and phrases they are looking for. Use these common misspellings to your advantage. Misspell keywords cost considerably less and they are less competitive too.

To come up with common misspell words and phrases you can

  • Think about common typing mistakes such as wrong letter order (distinguish distingiush), double typing (think, thhink),common omissions (burger, burge), wrong replacement (yahoo, yahpp)
  • Think of the commonly misspellings such as (calendar, calender), (commitment, committment), (barbecue, barbeque), (separate, seperate)
  • Use the typo generation by Searchspell at http://www.searchspell.com/typo
  • Ask your friends or family members about common misspelling that’s related to your niche.

If you think using misspell keywords is a waste of time, and bring in no traffic then check out this page from Google. The data shows some of the misspellings detected by their spelling correction system for the query “Britney spears”. This applies to other search terms too so you can see how you can profit from it.

Apparently, there’s a lot of people searching for “ Brittany spears”.

 

2. Identify and Use Common Abbreviations and Acronyms

Understanding and using this tip can lead to the discovery of new keywords which may be harder to identify using the traditional keyword research tools.

Abbreviations:

Dec vs. December
1st Place Software vs. First Place Software
Windows XP vs. WinXP

Acronyms Examples:

PDA vs Personal Digital Assistance
F1 vs. Formula One
PC vs. Personal Computer

Use the free online tool such as AbbreviationZ at http://www.abbreviations.com/ to find common abbreviations and acronyms related to your niche.

 

3. Use Various Verb

Different searchers express themselves differently so use different variations of verbs.

For Example:

Learn to type
Learning to type
Learn typing
Learning typing 

 

4. Use Plural vs. Singular

Using both plural and singular version of your keywords can easily double the number of keywords in your list. For example, consider using

Computer book
Computers book
Computer books
Computers books

When using this technique, keep in mind that while Google AdWords distinguishes between plural and singular keywords, Yahoo Search Marketing doesn’t. However when it comes to organic search, almost all the major search engines distinguish between the plural and singular forms.

 

5. Use Separated, Hyphenated and Merged Keywords

Some keyword can either be merged or separated by a hyphen or space. If you do not use its variations, you might be missing out on half the searchers.

Email, e-mail, e mail
Selfhelp, self-help, selp help
Payperclick, pay-per-click, pay per click

 

6. Use Geographical Location

Some searchers add a location to their keyword search to find local results. Even if what you sell works all over the country or world, people are still interested on using a local provider or at least a company that recognizes their town or state.

For examples:

Kota Kinabalu ford escape dealers
Nintendo Wii Florida
New York law firms

This tip allows you to expand your keyword list exponentially. If you are selling products in the US , you may want have a look at the Census Bureau’s list of cities. It features 25,000 us cities and town that you can combine with your keywords.

Click here for instructions on using the file.

 

7. Use Variations of US and UK spellings

Searchers may use the US or UK spelling variation. Use both variations in your keyword list. Example

Color pencil, colour pencil
Cheque – check
Anti ageing – anti aging

 

8. Use Adjectives

Consider using adjectives in addition to your main keywords. Many people use adjectives when searching such as:

Free
Best
Cheap
Amazing
Beautiful
Quality
New

 

9. Use Domain Names

Many searchers often include domain names in their search. So be sure to include the relevant domain names and all their variations in your keyword list. However be caution when using this tip as a domain name can be considered a trademark. Example

www.usedcar.com
usedcar.com

 

If you have keywords tips of your own, please feel free to share it with us.

 

4

Seven Critical Mistakes New Advertisers Make When Setting Up Their AdWords Campaigns

There are two ways to setup your AdWords Campaign, the right way and the wrong way. Here’s I am going to show you the wrong way to do it. If you commit any of these mistakes, you could end up paying more that you should and there’s a good chance that your campaign will fail.

 

1. Targeting the Wrong Language & Countries

The first step you do when setting up a campaign is to select the languages and countries you want to target. Most new advertises make the mistake by selecting the “All Languages” and “All Countries” options.

You may think that the more country your ads are shown or the more language the ads support the better. Nothing could be further from the truth.

If you are selling a product which does not support international shipping, you are going to end up paying for visitors who will never purchase your product. Unless you are a global business, choosing the right country is extremely important when it comes to targeting your market.

adwords-countries.gif

Language specific targeting is useful if your audience only speaks one or more language. This way you can target these customers no matter where they are in the world.

adwords-language.gif

2. Writing the Wrong Headline

The second step requires you to write your headline. Your headline is by far the most important part of your ad. Most new advertisers make the mistake by entering their company’s name or product’s name as the headline.

While it’s important to have your company’s or product’s name out there, it’s more important to have a benefit laden headline that catches your potential customer’s attention.

Your headline should contain your major keywords. It should be what your visitors’ want, not what you want.

 

3. Writing the Wrong Description

Some new advertisers write what their product or service is all about, nothing else. They forget that what the potential customers want to know is what’s in it for them.

Now that your headline managed to get the attention of your potential customers, use your description to deliver on the promise.

Here’s a tip. When you write your ad description fill the second line with a benefit. Think of what your visitors can gain from it.

In the third line, write a feature of your product or service. Remember, features always come after benefits. Here’s an example of a good ad description:

adwords-sample1.gif

Again, it should be what your visitor’s want, not what you want.

 

4. Sending Your Visitors to Your Homepage.

Unless your homepage is targeted and optimized to sell a specific product or service (i.e. it’s your landing page), you do not want to take people there and hope they look around. If they don’t see exactly what your ad says you are offering in five seconds, they’ll leave before you can say blink.

You can send them to any page within your website but this page must be specifically about what your ad has to offer. If it’s a download trial, show them the download page with a download link prominently visible on that page.

 

5. Using Generic Keywords Or Small Keyword List

Most people come up with a list of 5 to 20 keywords that are pretty generic and put everything into a one size fits all kind of campaign. Because of the large variety of keywords in the campaign, the ad does not match the keywords resulting in a low CTR and higher bid price.

What you should do is take all of you different keywords and organize them into groups of narrow, and closely relate terms. Each group should have its own campaigns. Take full advantage of other AdWords keyword features such as negative keywords, and its matching options to quality your traffic even further.

If you want to beat your competitors, you should have at least 200 keywords or more.

 

6. Accepting Google’s Suggested Bid Price

Some new advertisers make the mistake thinking that the suggested bid price is perhaps the minimum bid amount required. It’s actually the maximum bid amount thato you should bid if you want the number one position.

But of course you do not have to be number one most of the time so it’s not necessary for you to accept Google’s suggested bid price.

However, in some highly competitive niches, you may need to bid higher than your competitors especially if you have not accumulated enough history under your campaign or AdWords account. Check out a related post here where I explained why most newbies fail with AdWords.

 

7. Fail to Split Test Your Ads

I am guilty of this myself when I first got stated with AdWords. I can’t stress enough how important it is to split test your ads.

The secret to long term success on AdWords is to keep your bid prices down. And to do that you’ll need to do split testing.

Split test two ads at the same time, then delete the low performing one. Then create a new ad to try beating the best one. When you have two or more ad in a single campaign, Google will rotate them simultaneously. It may take sometime before one ad emerge as the winner.

You can find a related article about split testing here.

 

There you have it, next time you start a campaign make sure to avoid these mistakes.

2

Why New Google AdWords Advertisers Always Fail

We know that an advertiser’s AdWords history is important when it comes to ranking new AdWords ads. What we don’t know is that it so important, it can make or break your business.

MindValleyLabs had conducted an experiment where they paused several very successful campaigns which had been running for over one year and created a new Google AdWords account.

Then they launched identical campaigns on the new Google AdWords account. What they found were shocking. Their average daily click count basically dropped to zero and they got hardly any impressions.

Nothing had changed except moving the campaigns from an existing Google AdWords account to a new Google Adwords account.

So how can this be explained?

The only difference is History.

In this experiment, everything was kept constant except moving campaigns from an existing Google AdWords Account to a new Google AdWords account. And, when you move accounts, the only thing that you lose is history.

Why is history so important?

• In Google, everything is based on the Quality Score which is a combination of how your ads have been performing over time relative to ads of the competition.

• Ads with a higher quality score will get surfaced more often and have a dramatically lower required bid minimum. When we drilled into the new Google AdWords account we saw bid minimums that far exceeded the maximum bids that we used previously. So, if your account has no history, you might have to spend extra to establish a good history by bidding high just to get started.

• We also know that ads with a higher click-through-rate will have a higher quality score and that ads that start appearing in a higher position will have a higher click-through-rate because people click on more links that appear higher on the page. So, once again, new Advertisers will have to spend extra to quickly drive up the Quality Score.

Recently I deleted several of my long running and successful campaigns and created new ads based on the same keywords with the same AdWords account.

What I found was that, with a good history under my belt, my ads didn’t take long before they occupied the top three spots with more or less the same amount of cost per click.

So it seems to me that your history is not only based on the particular campaigns you had but also based on the performance of your account as a whole.

Therefore it’s not too far fetched to suggest that, if your AdWords account has had a bad history, the only way to improve it without increasing your budget is by creating a new account so you will be back at square one.

Google AdWords Removes Limits On Site Exclusion

AdWords’ Site Exclusion tool allows you to exclude your ads from showing up on particular sites or sections of a site.

Previously there is a limit on the number of sites you can add into the tool. Bur recently this limit was lifted and now you can exclude an unlimited number of sites.

Today, we’d like to let you know about a recent change: you can now exclude an unlimited number of sites. We hope you’ll use the Site Exclusion tool to improve your ROI and refine your targeting across the network. And, as always, we’d like to remind you that excluding a site (or a section of a site) from one of your campaigns will prevent your ad from showing on all of the pages of that site (or section). Therefore, to ensure you don’t miss out on any potential customers, we suggest that you review a site carefully before deciding to exclude it from your campaign.

Are There Negative Consequences to Pausing a Campaign or Adgroup?

A member over at WebmasterWorld Forum asked

Will the keywords lose their CTR performance? Will this somehow be detrimental in terms of being competetive when the campaigns or adgroups are resumed after a period of time? Basically.. are there any bad consequences to “stepping out of the game” for a period of time? I’m talking weeks or months.

From my experience, there are no negative consequences for pausing it for a week or less.

One of my ads which occupy the first and second spot consistently will return to the same spot when it’s resumed after it’s paused for a week or so.

The only different is that when new advertisers come in. They would push my ad out of the top three. But two or three days after that, it’ll usually return to its normal position.

I guess it all depends on your previous ads history, your competitor’s ads history and whether there’s new advertiser joining in the bidding.

Rustrybrick of Search Engine Roundtable writes

Deleting a campaign or AdGroup can and will cause issues. Editing a campaign or AdGroup can also cause direct issues. But pausing them should not.

AdWordsAdvisor basically confirms that, but we are waiting on confirmation on that.

What may happen is that your competitors gain better history for their ads (but your history should remain the same). It also may hurt you to not remain active, because this is a dynamic bidding and ranking environment, if things change and your not around to watch these changes, then you can be hurt from the lost experience and time.

Forum discussion can be found here

1

Google’s Quality Score Helps Determine AdWords Ad Delivery

There’s a feature in Google AdWords called Optimized Ad Serving and when this feature is enabled, Google will automatically display the better-performing ad more often as they want you to benefit from the ad with the better CTR.

However this behavior is not desirable when you are performing a test to find out which ad will perform better.

So you would want Google to show your ads equally so that you can compare their performance by disabling this option. To do so click on “Edit Campaign Settings” and uncheck the box that says “Enable optimized ad serving for my ads”.

However, in certain situation after you’ve disabled Optimized Ad Serving, your ads till don’t get shown evenly. What’s wrong?

One explanation – this might have to do with Google’s Quality Score.

AussieWebmaster has posted information in a Search Engine Watch Forums thread where a Google representative has told him that Google’s quality score helps determine the ad delivery.

Regarding the serving, this actually is a common question that we receive. The system tries to equally rotate ads but there are other factors that weigh into this rotation.

In your case it does look fairly even for the most part, however the system may be looking at the one ad as one with a less quality score than the other, thus not serving it as often.

Although you have it opted into rotate more evenly it isn’t guaranteed that the system will functionally work to an exact science. I know this isn’t the answer you were hoping for, but this is what we have been told by engineering!

If you want to know more about Google’s Quality Score check out Jonathan Mendez case study here.

[Via Search Engine Roundtable]

Should I Keep My PPC Search Advertising If I Already Rank #1 Organically?

A member on High Ranking Forum asked whether they should continue to pay for PPC ads for the keyword they already rank #1 for.

If you are getting 65% of your traffic organically from Google for free, should you pay for the other 35%?

Some responded to the question with opinions that are worth considering when you are in such situation.

There is one theory that having top results in both organic and PPC listings can help build the credibility of the site (Customer: “Hey, these guys are all over this page! They must be the industry leader” or something along those lines.).

And

Studies have shown that multiple exposures increases CTR. I’ve even seen a study that asserted that while banner ads may not provide direct benefit in many cases, customers were more likely to buy when exposed to a company’s brand in multiple places.

While there are many reasons for not paying – including the high cost to gain that extra traffic, personally I say it depends on the situation.

I have a website where it’s ranked in the top 5 for one of my targeted keywords organically. While it costs me close to a thousand Ringgit per month to have the site listed in the sponsored listing for that particular keyword, I continue to bear the cost.

This is because with the sponsored listing, I sell 40% to 50% more product as compare to when I just depend on traffic from the organic listing.

I guess this could be the case where branding is playing its roles in a niche area. Perhaps the double exposure adds trust and credibility which lead to a bigger profit.

[via Search Engine Roundtable]

Neat PPC Tricks From ShoeMoney

ShoeMoney, the guy who made $100K per month with AdSense, was recently asked by his reader if it’s a waste of money to bid for anything lower than the top few spots on PPC search engines.

ShoeMoney Answer: On the Pay Per Click side of Search Engine Marketing I never pay more then the minimum allowed by the search engine. So basically 10 cents (yahoo’s Minimum) is the most I ever pay per click. This method requires a lot more work and “skill” if you will because you have to come up with longtail keyword combinations, typos, and misspellings.

As far as placement goes really I do not put that much into it. I have found that I get more clicks being 1,2,3 then bad for 4,5,6,7 but ok for 8,9,10 spots. I think this stems from the same explanation as SEO that people either click on the first results or scroll to the bottom and find something that catches there eye.

He basically proves that long tail keywords work very well. If you do not have the money, you can still do well bidding on the bottom spots for a few pennies and still enjoy the conversion.

So if you are bidding $0.70 for something and it converts poorly, perhaps you could cut the bid price to $0.20 or $0.30 and the conversion rate will probably go up.

There’s a reason for this: the harder people are willing to look to find you, the more likely they are to buy. In contrast, the top spots sometimes attract impulsive clicks which increase acquisition cost.

Another trick mentioned buy ShoeMoney is that you can create your ad and place your keyword in such a way that the ad form an arrow like shape >

See example below:

shoemoneyadwords.gif

Notice how the bold words form an arrow like > shape?

This trick according to ShoeMoney increased his CTR by about 25% because the ad guides the eyes and invite users to click on it. I’ve never tried this before but I wonder what will happen when everyone tries it.

But like everything else, you should test each method to see if it works in your situation.

What Determine Your Click Through Rate In Google

A post over at Search Engine Roundtable points to a thread in a Search engine watch Forum about a poll asking members to vote on the most important factor they believe determines your click through rate on your ad. The options include:

  • Title
  • Ad Copy
  • Display URL
  • Position
  • Narrowness/broadness of keywords in group
  • Dynamic Keyword Insertion
  • Other (please specify in comments)

Member PPC feels that is an industry by industry variance that comes into play here, but overall, he believes “position and narrowness/broadness or keywords” are the most important factors.

SEW Moderator, Discovery, says;

In my view, a narrowly defined set of keywords, used within focused ad groups is what gives you a solid position resulting in a high CTR. Then on top of solid keywords you have a related title and ad copy, both of which should be different from the viewable competition. With this set up and a competitive CPC you should achieve the best CTR.

I couldn’t agree more with this. On top of that, I think how you differentiate your ad from your competitors in the title and ad copy play a major role that determines your CTR.

Of course some industries are more competitive that others but if you could find a way to make your ad appear the most relevant and beneficial to searchers, you CTR will soar.

Read more: Search Engine Watch Forums.

>

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