The Spectrum Group Online https://online-sales-marketing.com Where Visibility and Transparency Connect Tue, 22 Aug 2017 16:01:46 +0000 en-US hourly 1 https://wordpress.org/?v=4.8.1 48765153 Accidental Clicks On AdWords https://online-sales-marketing.com/accidental-clicks-adwords/ https://online-sales-marketing.com/accidental-clicks-adwords/#respond Tue, 22 Aug 2017 16:01:46 +0000 https://online-sales-marketing.com/?p=16777

Who Clicks These Things?

“Does anyone actually click on these adverts?” This is a common question I hear when I discuss AdWords, or any PPC advertising, with someone for the first time. The answer is a resounding ‘yes’ of course with Google tracking over 4 billion store visits from clicks on their ads. But not every click leads to a conversion and there are plenty of clicks that aren’t even intentional. So how does Google stop accidental clicks?

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I’m Sorry, it Was an Accident!

An accidental click is exactly what you think it is. Typically accidental clicks will come from display ads, either on websites or, much more often, on mobile applications. These can either be by design, or ‘accidental’. Many app designers deliberately set up the user interface of their applications so adverts will overlap, or be close to buttons required to use the application. This results in ad revenue for their app and usually doesn’t annoy the user too much if the application was free.

But, it does damage the advertiser’s statistics in AdWords. They may see that SuperCoolGamez app is bringing in thousands of impressions and hundreds of clicks per week, but zero conversions. Not only is this a waste of the advertisers money, but if they don’t realise that these clicks are accidental, they may waste time trying to fix a non existent issue with their ads or landing pages.

Do Google Care?

This obviously has a knock on effect at Google. AdWords is Google’s biggest money earner so it’s important to them that it’s working well for both users and the advertisers. Over the years Google have improved their ad placements on display campaigns on websites greatly, and, in the last four years have also made efforts to improve placement on mobile applications too.

Part of these improvements has been the creation of native ads. Native ads are designed to blend into their environment better, so they won’t stick out as much as other ads. This gives the user a more natural experience while using an application, or website, but also means that some ‘accidental’ clicks are more likely. Although in this case an accidental click would not be a true accident. More of a misleading click.

But the main way they have dealt with accidental clicks is by automatically filtering them out.

How Do They Known What’s an Accident?

Speed is the first thing. If the click results in a pageview of less than 680ms it is ignored. Even a speed reader couldn’t read your landing page that quickly… Another way of filtering clicks is by filtering out clicks that haven’t been made fully on the button. For example if you half press a button with your finger, Google can tell how many pixels of the button you have pressed. If they think you haven’t pressed enough pixels, the click will be deemed as accidental.
After excluding fast clicks and edge clicks Google noticed dramatic improvements in ad performance, essentially proving them right and showing how the clicks had not had a real value beforehand.

People Do Click on The Ads

Have you run successful mobile ad display campaigns? We’d love to hear what successes (or failures) you’ve had using AdWords to advertise in mobile applications.

How can we help?

What do your links and content say about your site’s SEO? What does your data say in Search Console?

We are Spectrum Group Online, and we offer strategic and tactical consulting so you can monetize your online presence. Call us for a complimentary 30-minute consultation to discuss your website’s user experience and translate that into sales.

Contact Us Today »

Photo credit – Top: Mark Jensen
Photo credit – Bottom: Nogran SRO

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Interviewing an AdWords Agency https://online-sales-marketing.com/interviewing-an-adwords-agency/ https://online-sales-marketing.com/interviewing-an-adwords-agency/#comments Wed, 16 Aug 2017 16:00:04 +0000 http://online-sales-marketing.com/?p=12533 kitty-your-ad-here

Vetting for Credibility & Performance

Finding the right search marketing (SEM) manager or AdWords agency takes research. To help you find the best match for your business, we found that asking some very specific questions can avoid disappointment. The following questions should make your interviewing list as the answers will help you discern the seasoned professionals from the newbies.

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1. Are they a certified Google Partner?

Google has the highest market share of all search engines (63.9% according to Search Engine Land). As such, they have the biggest audience for online advertising. Their AdWords management platform is complicated, even for seasoned users. And new functions are rolled out frequently. Ideally you want your AdWords agency to be a certified Google Partner for these reasons:

  • They passed at least two exams (renewed annually). It shows they have knowledge of advanced features and keep up-to-date on their craft.
  • They manage at least $10,000 in AdWords campaigns. This separates the hobbyists from the professionals.
  • Their accounts are regularly monitored for quality and performance. Google actively reviews quality scores, ad extensions, bid strategies, etc.
  • They have direct access to Google via exclusive account representatives.
  • They receive advanced training opportunities, keeping their skills sharp and up to date.

2. Do they outsource your PPC account management? If so, to who and where are they located?

Some digital marketing agencies outsource AdWords management offshore in order to cut costs and increase their profits. It’s vitally important that your PPC expert understands language nuances and applies them appropriately to keywords, ad, and landing page copy. You’re looking for native speakers as well as those with relevant cultural knowledge. Why? Because your AdWords agency should also determine proper negative keywords — words that should be excluded from ads — as these search phrases won’t bring you qualified prospects. The context of your business needs to be understood, not just the content.

3. Do they use A/B testing to optimize accounts?

We are huge proponents of A/B testing; this is where you test one ad or landing page against another to determine which performs better. It’s not uncommon that small changes — one word, phrase, graphic or call to action — can affect click-through-rates. Appealing to your buyer’s emotions can make the difference between a sale… or not. Make sure your AdWords agency or account manager has a deep understanding of optimization and testing techniques so you best position your product with ad copy and landing pages that entice prospects.

4. What do they use to monitor online advertising performance?

The short answer should be: through Google Analytics. Online advertising can get expensive… quickly. If you’re not tracking results and ROI, why bother? We suggest digging a bit deeper into ad performance by asking your potential AdWords agency on how they optimize the account. For example, do they optimize for clicks, conversions or CPA (click per action)? There isn’t one right way to do things. But you need to know if they have a plan.

5. How do they track calls? What systems do you recommend?

One of the many benefits of online advertising is the ability to track performance on a granular level. We highly recommend using a call tracking service to more accurately gauge campaign performance and tie those calls directly back to sales. We like using CallRail because of its affordability and simple integration with Google Analytics and your website. If you can track performance in your CRM (like Salesforce) even better. But do they have experience working with these systems?

engage-landing-configuration6. Who owns the account?

You, the client, should always own your data. And have access to your data. Period. You can designate administrative access to your AdWords agency while maintaining control of the account. That way, should you part ways at some point, you haven’t lost important account history. The same applies to your Analytics, website domain and call-tracking accounts. You should also be paying for your own account. Not the agency paying on your behalf. This gives you ultimate control over how much is spent.

7. When you create landing pages will they match my website’s design?

The right answer is… yes! A prospect going to your AdWords landing page may not be ready to buy. They may be interested in researching your company further by reading testimonials, blog posts or more details on your products/services. By having your landing page design match your website, you avoid confusing your visitor. Even subtle changes can break the “scent.”

8. What is their average ROI for the accounts you manage?

Depending upon your industry, online advertising may be a great way to complement your White Hat SEO strategy. We’ve found that ROI can vary widely based upon the product and service as well as a company’s geographic targeting area. For example, if you track true profits — taking into account returns/refunds, repeat business and a customer’s overall lifetime value — your ROI can be more accurately measured. Lastly, ask your potential AdWords agency for statistics and related experience to companies like yours. This is a vague question, but how the agency answers it will show you how they think about online advertising.

Is Your AdWords Account Leaking Money?

Are you wondering if you’re wasting money with your online advertising? We often find leaks in how an account is set-up, where campaigns run without uber targeted ads and landing pages or mismatched geographic areas and time zones.  

As you can see, having a certified Google Partner as your SEM agency has many benefits. What other traits do you look for in an online advertising partner?

How can we help?

Launching a website and need help with design? Or, are you tweaking your landing pages to improve sales conversion?

We are the spectrum group online, and we offer strategic and tactical consulting so you can monetize your online presence. Call us for a complimentary 30-minute consultation to discuss your website’s user experience and translate that into sales.

Contact Us Today »

photo credit – top: Shannon Kringen
photo credit – body: Andrew Fogg

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How to Create Social Engagement https://online-sales-marketing.com/creating-social-engagement/ https://online-sales-marketing.com/creating-social-engagement/#respond Wed, 16 Aug 2017 16:00:02 +0000 https://online-sales-marketing.com/?p=16774

Getting People Involved

Getting quality engagement on social media is the holy grail of anyone who’s responsible for managing their companies online presence. Creating and publishing content is a challenge, but the real challenge is getting consistent social engagement from your readers or followers.

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So how do you turn a passive audience into an active one? These three tips should help to get your followers doing more than just following.

Create A Competition

Running a competition on your social media platforms is one of the best ways to encourage more engagement. There are hundreds of different ways of running competitions on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram or LinkedIn, from paid campaigns to free. An important thing to consider is the rules and regulations of each platform regarding competitions. If you want to run a competition on Facebook for example there are a number of rules you’ll need to comply with before you can.

Some of the simplest competitions are just asking for users to share their best photo or video related to your product. This doesn’t require a great deal of time to set up and you can decide the winner based on the person who gets the most shares or likes.social engagement

Social media competitions work best if your business is a B2C business, but you can find ways to adapt competitions for the world of B2B too. The key here is to focus on the employee and their professional development. So, for example, if we were to run a campaign for ourselves targeting marketing managers, we could offer a 5 day SEO tips email course.

Ask for Stories

Asking people to talk about themselves is one of the best ways to start a conversation in real life. The same goes for social media. Asking your followers to share stories or experiences they have had can be a good way to stimulate a conversation among your audience.

As your followers are likely to have things in common with each other, you can light a spark between them, hopefully stimulating them into conversation. As well as providing you with some engagement.

Talk to Influencers

If you look into who gets the most social media interactions you’ll find that it’s typically a person rather than a company. This trend is followed in both B2B and B2C, with ‘personalities’ usually having more credibility, even if they are closely linked to a company or brand.

So, find who the influences are in your arena and try to engage with them. You can do this publicly, by responding to things they have posted. Or by speaking with them privately and asking if they would be interested in collaborating with you. Either way you will hopefully be able to create an interesting conversation that your followers will want to take part in.

Finding Social Engagement

Do you have other ways of getting your followers to comment on your social pages? If you do, we’d love to hear how you do it.

How can we help?

How are your social media platforms performing? Do you need help building social engagement?

We are Spectrum Group Online, and we offer strategic and tactical consulting so you can monetize your online presence. Call us for a complimentary 30-minute consultation to discuss your website’s user experience and translate that into sales.

Contact Us Today »

Photo credit – Top: Mark Jensen
Photo credit – Bottom: Joe the Goat Farmer

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How Having Too Much Choice Changes SEO & Content https://online-sales-marketing.com/choice-changes-seo-content/ https://online-sales-marketing.com/choice-changes-seo-content/#respond Tue, 15 Aug 2017 16:00:46 +0000 https://online-sales-marketing.com/?p=16753

Pro Choice

We have now reached information overload. If you want to find the best car for your situation and you type something like “Best family car” into Google you’re presented with a front page full of useful, relevant, information from respected sources. On my front page (note: I am from the UK and not based in the US, so my results will be different to a searcher inside the US) I see whatcar.com, carbuyer.co.uk, bussinessinsider.com, autoexpress.com and a number of other results. All of these links are (in my opinion) reliable and trustworthy.

I don’t have the time, or inclination to read all of these links. Even if I did, how likely is it that I will get a consensus opinion from them all? So what should I do and how will this effect my SEO & Content?

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Content Marketing’s To Blame

With the rise of content marketing we have obviously seen an increase in content creation. Most businesses now produce their own blog and have to create constant content to keep feeding their SEO engine. This creates a great deal of ‘noise’ for a searcher to filter through and also leads to a lot of different opinions.SEO & Content

The pressure to create regular content obviously filters down to the writer and a lot of content that’s created is just content for content’s sake. There is no real argument to the article, or meat in the sandwich. All filler, no killer.

SEO & Content Implications

What does this mean to the end user? It means they’re drowning in information and because of that they’re getting discouraged from searching for themselves, or search at all. Price comparison websites are a good example. People don’t want to wade through 50 websites on the best mortgage or insurance policy, so they’ll just pick what the comparison website says is best.

Another example is in our Facebook feeds. More and more people are getting their news from Facebook or Twitter. We’re no longer seeking out the publications we trust, or respect, but just taking what is put in front of us. Is this because we’ve become lazy? Or is it because we’re overwhelmed with information. I think it’s probably a bit from column A, but much more from column B. When you’re presented with 5 different options and on the surface they look largely the same, why not pick the easiest.

What Does This Mean For the Content Creator?

Firstly, it means that optimization is key. The ‘lazier’ people become, the more important it is to be top of the list.

Secondly, it may mean we see a ‘tipping point’ with content marketing. Where the search engines (and in turn consumers) start to refocus on the quality of content, taking away any benefit from publishing content at volume.

Thirdly, is the question of choice. The internet has enabled more choice and diversity of opinion than any time before. Now we can instantly compare our situation/ product price/ job/ government to that of someone thousands of miles away, in a totally different country. This changes how we, as consumers, act, as we are more aware of what else is on offer. FOMO, or perhaps FOGRP (fear of getting ripped off) rules our lives. But it also fights against the fact that we don’t have time to know everything, even if the information is out there.

How can we help?

Do you need help with your SEO & Content? How much content do you produce per week?

We are Spectrum Group Online, and we offer strategic and tactical consulting so you can monetize your online presence. Call us for a complimentary 30-minute consultation to discuss your website’s user experience and translate that into sales.

Contact Us Today »

Photo credit – Top: Mark Jensen
Photo credit – Bottom: Wikipedia

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SEO Writing Template https://online-sales-marketing.com/seo-writing-templates/ https://online-sales-marketing.com/seo-writing-templates/#comments Fri, 11 Aug 2017 16:07:05 +0000 http://online-sales-marketing.com/?p=406 local seo tips

SEO Friendly Creating Content

SEO writing is fundamental to building a website’s ranking with the various search engines like Google, Yahoo, and Bing. In general, writing for SEO is a complex and iterative process. By publishing relevant content, consistently over time, you build your business’ online visibility. If you’re new to SEO writing or just want to be more effective, we’ve created a SEO Template to make it easy and get better SEO results from blog articles or website content.

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1. Focus Keyword

The term “keyword” is a bit of a misnomer. It can be one word, but more likely its a topic, phrase, “search query” or question asked on a search engine page. For example, the spectrum group talks a lot about SEO, so a keyword we use is “what is SEO.” Think about how your target audience searches. What services do you provide? Or, what types of problems do you typically solve? That will provide a basis for your primary (your top ten) and secondary keywords.

Often our clients initially use industry jargon as keywords. That may be appropriate for a technical or business-to-business (B2B) audience, but most likely they aren’t immediately meaningful to potential buyers.  A useful (and free) tool is Google Adwords; it reports the number of searches (globally and locally) for a keyword, its corresponding competition, as well as ideas and suggestions (the site’s best feature in my opinion).

By focusing on one keyword, the content you generate will naturally grow around it. Your SEO writing is for the bots, but more importantly, you are writing for humans. So keywords and relevant content must be closely linked.

2. Title Tag

Also called the SEO Title in the Yoast WordPress SEO Plugin (one of our favorites), the title tag is not the title readers will see at the top of the post or page. Rather, it’s the title that appears in the blue on the Search Engine Results Page (SERP). This is the first information the human searcher will see about your site. It needs to contain the chosen keyword in the beginning and it needs to entice the reader to click it.  You’re limited to 70 characters, so be clear and concise. Lastly, whenever possible, your company name should also appear , so try and save some characters for it.

3. Meta Description

balanced-approach-320x211Located in the same spot as the Title Tag, the Meta Description is expressly for human consumption. It is a 160-character mini-billboard that contains a description of your content that (hopefully) closely matches the search phrase or query. Action verbs along with relevant and timely information tempts a visitor to check out your site.

4. URL

Probably one of the most important elements for search engine bots is the URL. Nobody actually type a full URL anymore.  In many CMS (Content Management Systems) you have the ability to modify it, so if you can, make sure you do. Ensure your URL is:

  1. relevant to the title, content and keyword and
  2. the keyword must be present.  If you do change the url of an existing page, be sure you create a redirect for that page as well.

5. H1 (Header) Title

Seen by humans and machines, the H1 Title is the first thing readers will see when they land on the page as it appears at the top of every article. Again, relevancy to your content is critical. Your keyword should appear at the very beginning of the H1 Title.

6. First Paragraph

By now you’ve written the keyword enough times so it’s very clear how it relates to the actual content. Ideally the first paragraph is around 125 words with at least one keyword link, preferably in the first couple of sentences. As you build content, you should also be linking to an associated top level page in your website as well as to other blog posts.

How can we help?

Need help in strategically updating your web content for SEO? Don’t have the time or bandwidth to generate consistent blog posts?

We are The Spectrum Group, and we offer strategic and tactical consulting so you can monetize your online presence. Call us for a complimentary 30-minute consultation to discuss how to leverage customer testimonials.

Contact Us Today »

photo credit body: Mark Hunter
photo credit header: Joe the Goat Farmer

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Making Your Site Mobile Friendly For The Mobile Index https://online-sales-marketing.com/making-mobile-index-ready/ https://online-sales-marketing.com/making-mobile-index-ready/#respond Thu, 10 Aug 2017 16:00:56 +0000 https://online-sales-marketing.com/?p=16744

Preparing Your Site For the Split Index

With the news that Google will soon be splitting their index, separate mobile and desktop search results, even more focus has been put on optimizing your content so it’s accessible on mobile devices. Here are some quick points on how to make sure your site is as mobile friendly as possible.

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Use Headings

The heading (H1, H2 etc) tags are important for normal SEO as they tell the search engine where to look for the most important information, but they’re even more useful on mobile, as not only do they point Google in the right direction, but they break the text up clearly for the reader.

Quotes and Highlights

Another way of breaking up the text to make it easier to digest on a small screen is by highlighting important passages of text. One way you can do this is by inserting quotes or highlighting information that you think is important. Again, this makes the text easier to break down and grabs the attention of someone reading on mobile.

Summary at the Topmobile index

Sometimes introduction paragraphs can be a little esoteric. Try to avoid this on mobile. Or, if you must write something complex in the introduction, add a really brief summary above. This helps the mobile reader know exactly what’s going on without having to scroll any further down the page to find out what you’re trying to say.

Have a Table of Contents/ Or Put Info on Tabs/ Expandable Content

Create a table of contents that links to different sections of your page or put tabs at the top of the page to separate content. Or you can even add sections that will expand or contract when you click on them. This makes it very simple to navigate for a mobile user and allows you to put more information on the page, without having to worry too much about scroll fatigue.

Use Bullets and Lists

Listed information is easier to read quickly. Where you can, add bullet points or lists to make your content scannable for a reader. When we’re using our mobile devices we’re often on the move, or in a busy environment, so keeping things short and to the point will help your key points get seen quickly.

Mobile Index and Mobile Friendly

If you’re following these five points then your site should be mobile friendly enough not to suffer when the mobile index is turned on. Do you have any tips on how to make your content more mobile friendly?

How can we help?

Are you ready for the mobile index? Is your site optimized for the SERP split?

We are Spectrum Group Online, and we offer strategic and tactical consulting so you can monetize your online presence. Call us for a complimentary 30-minute consultation to discuss your website’s user experience and translate that into sales.

Contact Us Today »

Photo credit – Top: Mark Jensen
Photo credit – Bottom: Pxhere

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Search Console and Content – How to Get More Content Ideas https://online-sales-marketing.com/search-console-and-content/ https://online-sales-marketing.com/search-console-and-content/#respond Wed, 09 Aug 2017 16:00:53 +0000 https://online-sales-marketing.com/?p=16741

Using Search Console To Write Your Content

In the never-ending content creation battle finding inspiration or focus can sometimes be difficult. So, when you find your well of inspiration has run dry check out your website’s Search Console. Search Console gives you a great deal of interesting SEO information, but if you’re looking at that data from a different perspective it can also give you the ideas you need to get writing. See what we have to say about Search Console and content.

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Top ranking pages

Search console allows you to see which of your pages are the best ranking, so you can see which topics you are already performing well for. If this information is good and you like what you’re ranking best for, it gives you a sign to improve those pieces of content, or focus on those keywords. If however you don’t think your best ranking pages are for the right things, then it helps to highlight areas where you should strengthen where you need more, or better, content.

On site search

One mine of content ideas that is very rarely explored is the on site search of your website. Firstly, If you don’t have an on site search, then you should get one as it’s not only a useful resource, but also makes your site easier to use.search console and content

If you do have an on site search you can use it to find out what people are searching for on your website by checking your search console. The report gives shows you exactly what visitors to your website actually want to read. If you see something coming up again and again, then write about it and make sure your on site search can find it easily. It also highlights if you have any navigation issues with your site.

Best performing blog posts

Another insight you can get from search console is which of your blog posts has performed best in the past. If you see one blog post constantly pulling in more visitors or ranking well, then perhaps you should revisit that blog post and update it. Or create other content that is related to that topic so you can build our your expertise in that area.

Search Console and Content

Using search console to help you write content requires you to think a little when looking at the data. But the three basic points above have helped us to create some of our most viewed and commented blog posts. In All the President’s Men they said to “Follow the money”, but at Spectrum we say “Follow the traffic” and you will be sure to create great content.

How can we help?

Do you need help seeing the link between Search Console and Content? What does your data say in Search Console?

We are Spectrum Group Online, and we offer strategic and tactical consulting so you can monetize your online presence. Call us for a complimentary 30-minute consultation to discuss your website’s user experience and translate that into sales.

Contact Us Today »

Photo credit – Top: Vimeo
Photo credit – Bottom: Nogran SRO

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AdWords Frequently Asked Questions https://online-sales-marketing.com/adwords-frequently-asked-questions/ https://online-sales-marketing.com/adwords-frequently-asked-questions/#respond Mon, 07 Aug 2017 16:00:10 +0000 https://online-sales-marketing.com/?p=16733

How To Run An AdWords Account

Recently we’ve been on-boarding a few new AdWords clients and during the process we noticed that a few of their questions were coming up again and again. So here’s our AdWords Frequently Asked Questions summary, explaining some of the main questions we find ourselves being asked about how to create a great AdWords account.

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How Many Keywords Should I Have Per AdGroup?

We like to limit the number of keywords to around 10. This makes it easier to manage and keep track of the keyword’s performance. It also means that the purpose of your AdGroup stays focused on one topic. Remember all of these keywords will be triggering one set of ads, so the more thematically similar they are, the better they will match the ads you write.

How Many Ads Should You Have Per AdGroup?

In our tightly focused AdGroup we don’t think you should have any more than four ads. But ideally, only two. You need to have two ads, so you can A/B test them against each other. Remember that if you have an AdGroup with 10 ad variations in it, any ad can trigger for any keyword. So if you think you need to have more than 2 different ads to cover all of your keywords, it’s probably a sign you should split the keywords into another AdGroup.

Can I Use Different Match Types In the Same AdGroup?

Yes, but make sure that the bids are set accordingly. So, for example if you have ‘shoes’ as your keyword as both a exact match and a broad match you need to make sure the bid for broad match is higher, so you don’t end up out bidding your own exact match keyword and paying $5 for a keyword you could have got for $4.AdWords Frequently Asked Questions

So for example:

Keyword Match Type Bid
+Shoes Broad modified $5.00
“Shoes” Exact $4.00

How Often Should I Check My Account?

This depends on a few factors. How new is the account or AdGroup you’re running and how much money are you spending on it. We would recommend you’re checking in on a new AdGroup or campaign daily at first. Things you should be paying special attention to:

  1. Your search terms report – This will show you if your keywords are matching with the right searches. You can also use the report to exclude any negative matches you see.
  2. Your Quality Score – This will show how good Google thinks your ad, landing page and keywords all work together. You can now see your historic Quality Score, so it is easier to track how it has improved (or worsened) for each keyword.
  3. Search impression share – This shows you how much of the search for your keyword you are getting. Highlighting how many clicks you’re missing out on. You can also get more detail by checking the Search Lost IS Rank column, which shows you when you’re losing out due to your Ad Rank (which is calculated by your bid x Quality Score.

Is Quality Score Important?

Yes. Quality score is a large part of your Ad Rank. Your Ad Rank determines where your ads show. You can try to fight Ad Rank (if you’re ignoring your quality score) by increasing your bids, but unless you want to waste your money, there isn’t much point. For AdWords to be effective your ads need to closely match your keywords and landing pages. For a good quality score your ads need to closely match your keywords and landing pages. For converting customers your ads need to closely match your keywords and landing pages. You get the point.

AdWords Frequently Asked Questions

Does this Q&A help you with your AdWords account? Are there any other questions you think we should answer about AdWords? Let us know in the comments if you want to hear more.

How can we help?

Is your AdWords account performing well? Do you need more help than our AdWords frequently asked questions can give?

We are Spectrum Group Online, and we offer strategic and tactical consulting so you can monetize your online presence. Call us for a complimentary 30-minute consultation to discuss your website’s user experience and translate that into sales.

Download "How to Create A High-Performing AdWords Account eBook" »

Photo credit – Top: Joe the Goat Farmer
Photo credit – Bottom: Pexels

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Heat Maps for Website Insights https://online-sales-marketing.com/heat-maps-for-website-insights/ https://online-sales-marketing.com/heat-maps-for-website-insights/#respond Fri, 04 Aug 2017 16:00:02 +0000 https://online-sales-marketing.com/?p=16721 heat maps What’s Hot & Cold

In order to effectively optimize a page or website, you need data. While Search Console and Web Analytics are fabulous sources of intel, I’ve found that granular information is often necessary. For example, what page elements draw a visitor’s attention? Is there a difference in how content is consumed via mobile versus tablet? Using heat maps to analyze actual usage behaviors can help drive optimization decisions. Otherwise, you’re guessing what works.

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Some Heat Mapping Software Options

As you can imagine, there are many choices of heat mapping software available. Choosing the right one depends upon your website platform and what it supports. For small businesses, I usually recommend HotJar. First, it’s affordable; the Plus plan costs $30 a month. Second, it’s suitable for small websites that get less than 10,000 pageviews a day.  And, it’s easy to set up an unlimited number of heat maps. Lastly, the plan includes 2,000 visitor recordings (more on that later).  CrazyEgg is another popular choice. At $9/month, you get 10 heat maps (called snapshots). If you have a tiny site, this may be sufficient. However, I’ve found that most clients need more than 10 snapshots especially if they are running multiple AdWord landing pages and are actively making optimization changes to content. That said, CrazyEgg has one unique feature: the confetti tool. Confetti helps you visualize what users are doing on your pages which is a bit more illustrative.

For enterprise websites, HotJar accommodates 2+ million pageviews a day. ClickTale is another option. For very large and complex sites, I suggest talking directly to multiple providers to get pricing, feature comparisons, and additional training/support.

Getting Started: Collecting User Data

Setting up heat map tracking on a website is relatively easy.

  1. First, you’ll need to add a code snippet to your website. Once you have an account, this code will be provided to you. Talk to your Webmaster about adding the code. Most providers have excellent instructions if you’re DIY.
  2. Review your site’s privacy policy. You’ll need to legally disclose the type of information you collect.
  3. Look at your website data — Google Analytics and Search Console — to find your most popular and important pages. Note the URLs.
  4. In your heat mapping account, create individual separate heat maps by url. If you’re A/B testing landing pages, be sure to include both versions.
  5. Review the account at least weekly to make sure the heat maps are set up properly and visitor recordings are occurring.

Visitor Recordings Are Different Than Heat Maps

Heat maps collect scrolling and clicking behaviors. The more activity in an area, the “hotter” it is. A heat map view is an overview of what’s happening on the page, like:

  • the percentage of visitors who scroll to the bottom of the page
  • the most popular places clicked on a page
  • where the average fold appears for visitors
  • toggling between views by desktop, tablet, and smartphone users

Visitor recordings, on the other hand, record individual website sessions. A recording documents one session so you can see the entry page, the length of time on a page, where they click on the page, and where they jump to next. In HotJar, you can increase viewing speed, skip pauses, and autoplay from one recording to the next. At first, it may feel like a jumble. Be patient. You’ll find that after watching a representative sample of recordings, you’ll get the hang of it.

Stay tuned for a follow-up post on how to analyze heat maps, visitor recordings, and analytics data to make optimization changes to specific pages.

How can we help?

What do your links and content say about your site’s SEO? What does your data say in Search Console?

We are Spectrum Group Online, and we offer strategic and tactical consulting so you can monetize your online presence. Call us for a complimentary 30-minute consultation to discuss your website’s user experience and translate that into sales.

Contact Us Today »

Photo credit – Top: Joe the Goat Farmer

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Phubbing & Other Mobile Behavior https://online-sales-marketing.com/phubbing-mobile-behavior/ https://online-sales-marketing.com/phubbing-mobile-behavior/#respond Thu, 03 Aug 2017 16:00:53 +0000 https://online-sales-marketing.com/?p=16705

When Screen Time Turns Against You

You know not to leave your phone’s ringer on in the theater, but are you unintentionally phubbing (phone + snubbing) among friends? As mobile technology becomes more prevalent in our society, it becomes easier to commit a faux pas with your mobile device, annoying or insulting others around you. Since this technology is still relatively new, proper etiquette hasn’t caught up. Here are a few examples of bad mobile behavior that makes you stand out – and not in a good way!

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Phubbing & Other Examples

Phubbing

One of the most common instances of bad mobile manners, phubbing involves paying more attention to your mobile device than the friends in front of you. Sure, everyone glances at the new text that just showed up, especially when anticipating an important contact. If you’re paying more attention to your device than your companions, you’re essentially snubbing them in favor of your phone, or phubbing. If you do need to handle something that’s really time sensitive, excuse yourself to take care of the issue and then come back into the conversation.phubbing

Cranking up the volume

Seriously, you can get a basic Bluetooth headset at Target for under $10 at this point. You shouldn’t have the volume on your mobile cranked up in public, where it can interrupt other peoples’ conversations and phone usage. Sure, your smartphone may go to 11, but that doesn’t mean everyone else wants to hear it.

Blocking the view

At large events, concerts or other performances, it’s really tempting to shoot a little video or take a lot of pictures. The people behind you also paid good money for their tickets. Keep your phone below head height unless snapping one or two keepsake photos. Be courteous and not block the view of those around you. Plus you don’t want the piracy police knocking at your door.

Mobile Doesn’t Mean Mobile

  • Driving. A mobile device means you can take it everywhere, not that you should use it anywhere. If you’re  driving, keep your eyes on the road and off your device. Set up your hands-free connection before starting your vehicle. According to the U.S. Department of Transportation, 10% of fatal crashes, 15% of injury crashes, and 14% of motor vehicle crashes in 2015 were reported as distraction-affected driving.
  • Walking. Every day pedestrians get hurt by distracted walking. Bumping into walls. Stepping into traffic. Falling down stairs. Yikes!
    In a U.S. Report article, they cited a study by the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration. The study showed that pedestrian deaths increased. There’s even a new term for pedestrians using their smartphones while walking – pedtextrians. If you’re not paying attention to the dangers around you… like moving vehicles… then it’s no surprise the rate of accidents is on the rise. Put your phone in your pocket or purse and watch where you’re going.

By keeping these tips in mind, you’ll be able to avoid inadvertently phubbing or otherwise committing a mobile faux pas. How will you react next time you’re phubbed or otherwise encounter poor mobile etiquette?

How can we help?

What do your links and content say about your site’s SEO? What does your data say in Search Console?

We are Spectrum Group Online, and we offer strategic and tactical consulting so you can monetize your online presence. Call us for a complimentary 30-minute consultation to discuss your website’s user experience and translate that into sales.

Contact Us Today »

Photo credit – Top: Pixabay
Photo credit – Bottom: Luke Wroblewski

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