Last night I did something I have not done in quite some time…I was looking for potential #website gigs on #craigslist – I did find a few that looked interesting, something jumped out at me that #businesses and people have not figured out…While literally anyone can build a #website – There are services like Wix that have made it drag and drop simple. But there are two critical elements being severely overlooked; #websitetraffic and #conversions – A website without traffic or visitors is like a billboard in the desert, and a website that cannot convert that traffic to your end objective is useless. Think about it..would you trust a builder that said they could build you a house for $2000 or forgot to factor in doors, windows, or plumbing? Building a website without giving thought to getting visitors or converting that traffic is poor planning and a waste of time and resources. There are many amazing website designers that can create some works of art, but haven’t a clue about getting or converting traffic. Same reason you go see a specialist vs your general practitioner for a problem with your heart. If your website strategy or current webmaster has no planning for getting and converting your visitors…It’s time to TERMINATE them. If you want more traffic and converted sales or leads through your website and online efforts, let’s talk about your goals for 2016. I’ll Be Back with more information like this in 2016.
About a year ago I had met with a prospective client through a friend. I did an evaluation of their old website and proposed some potential solutions. They asked me to put together a quote and I never heard from them again. They took the information I gave them and rebuilt their website on their own thinking they would save some money.
Fast forward, they ended up talking with my partner through another friend. They are in need of online marketing because a year later they still don’t have any traffic to their website.
They discovered the “billboard principle”…
Without Marketing Your Website Is Just A Billboard In The Desert
Today, anyone with a little effort can build a website, but without a marketing strategy no one will ever know you website exists.
It does not matter what method you choose to get traffic to your website; organic search, pay per click, social media, etc. you have to consider what you are trying to achieve once traffic reaches your website. Are you trying to promote a product(s), service(s), signups, or some other type of conversion.
This is where the real work begins. This is where my expertise can put your business or service on the map.
Overlook this step and no one will ever know your products or services exist. Don’t let your website become a billboard in the desert. Let me help you do a thorough evaluation to help you grow your online business.
While creating a fairly simple campaign for a client recently I encountered an error message from the Google Adwords platform that I have not seen or recall noticing in recent memory. “Users don’t search for this term very often on Google properties, so it is not eligible to trigger your ads”. That statement brings several thoughts to mind for me:
- Who cares if it is not a high-volume keyword. Google should deliver an ad for any relevant keyword / ad combination that an advertiser creates to promote their product / service
- Is Google now forcing advertisers to use less relevancy therefore increasing overall ad spend?
- Recent and documented changes to Adwords has all but eliminated exact match keywords again forcing advertisers to deal with irrelevant keyword phrases including misspellings and close match variants
- It is now more important than ever to include organic SEO and other forms of traffic generation for keywords that Google is claiming will not trigger an ad
This brings me to another question that I would love for some of my other Adwords colleagues to weigh in on..
Has Google Adwords reached critical mass? I can’t believe that Google is intentionally forcing Adwords customers to target less relevant terms / keyword phrases to just increase revenues…it seems to go against the very nature of Google trying to deliver the best and most relevant search results possible. Yet, for very local terms that Google supplies search numbers for they force advertisers to compete with broad national terms to get an ad to trigger.
This along with the fact that Adwords has eliminated essentially exact phrase match, misspellings and close variants indicates possibly that the Adwords platform has reached some sort of critical mass and can no longer deliver highly targeted exact match ads that advertisers once enjoyed.
So what does this mean in the long run for Adwords advertisers? If the ability to create highly targeted ads has been diminished advertisers will end up paying more to compete for the broader terms that Adwords is forcing them to bid on.
Again, I’d like to see some other Adwords professional weigh in on this.
Also noted that Adwords is changing URL entered into destination URL field by appending with “www” and display URL is now all lower case.
Note about the author: Currently manage $200,000+ monthly ad budget on Google Adwords, Bing / Yahoo generating 20,000+ leads each month for clients in multiple niches.
After getting hit with some click fraud hard in December 2013 I had to turn off all of my Bing / Yahoo advertising. I knew there was some click fraud, but I was hopeful that working with my Bing rep would help get to the bottom of the issue. Sadly, myself and several other business associates I know of using Bing / Yahoo advertising also had to turn off advertising.
Here’s a confession…We’ve been managing various types of paid traffic (pay per click) for six plus years and have never implemented any type of click fraud prevention for Adwords or Bing advertising. It was easy not to because our conversion data looked good, but that’s what click fraud scammers do…they make their criminal activity look real by completing forms with realistic looking data. That’s about to change. Furthermore, it’s one more reason anyone looking to jump into pay per click advertising with a budget of $1,000 or more per month should strongly consider having a click fraud solution in place from day one. After doing some homework and reaching out to some trusted online partners we’ve identified several solutions to avoid and will be sharing more information near the end of March on a solution that is saving some fortunate marketers thousands of dollars each month.
Fast forward to February 26th. We uncovered a click laundering network alive and active on Bing Ads / Yahoo. Unfortunately, most account reps have no idea what click laundering is. What is even more interesting is that click laundering first started making headlines back in 2006 and then Microsoft went on click laundering manhunt and filed lawsuits against several companies in 2010.
So here we are in 2014 and click fraud & click laundering are still rampant. Google, Bing, and Yahoo can barely make a dent in preventing it. I think they actually count on the average marketer not having the ability to monitor or track it on their own accord. If every online marketer used a 3rd party click fraud solution all the major search engines would be sending some major credits back to their pay per click customers.
Once I have a chance to compile all of the data, I’ll be posting it here as a downloadable PDF with regard to the click laundering network we uncovered. Next, we’ll be looking for a good click fraud attorney.
What has your experience been with click fraud with Adwords, Bing / Yahoo pay per click? Share your click fraud examples below and be sure to bookmark or return near the end of March for our follow up on this issue.
Whether you are new to Internet marketing or a seasoned veteran, you’re probably just as frustrated as I am with all the crappy reviews and information about various tracking tools. For me, I got lazy letting another company do critical tracking for me. I had looked at and purchased two of the above products and downloaded / installed Prosper202 in the past, but never really got around to implementing a solution to track all of my paid traffic sources.
For lack of the ability to split test landing pages natively, I’ll be leaving Prosper202 out of this short review.
If you are dabbling with online marketing, Prosper202 or Demon Tracking might be good options. One is free and the other could be purchased previously for about $17
If you are running a business and your online income depends on solid tracking and good customer support CPV Lab is the way to go (no affiliate link)
- AdtrackzGold – submitted a ticket over 12 hours ago and have not heard back from theses guys…this is horrible if you are running a business and need support
- Demon Tracking – Email these guys for support and was told to watch videos and ask questions in the forum
- CPV Lab – I have been in constant communication with “Mo” all day today working through some set up questions for Adwords / Bing / Yahoo tracking – while they don’t offer any paid support, their response times and willingness to help has been stellar!
I will be posting additional comments here along with “real” video tutorials and not just some dudes 10,000 foot overview to sell an affiliate click…there will be no affiliate links anywhere in this thread…this is to share information. (CPVLab vs. Demon Tracking vs. Adtrackz Gold)
Setting up a new Google Adwords campaign for just the “display network” revealed some interesting results. After two days of testing no impressions have been recorded on Computers…only mobile devices and tablets with full browsers. You’ll see that I had made a negative bid adjustment for mobile devices as I generated 325 clicks in about 12 hours which resulted in zero conversions.
Interestingly, tablets with full browsers has logged a reasonable number of impressions for my test with a handful of clicks and zero conversions.
This campaign was set up for the display network with selected keywords which are fairly popular and enjoy a high level of competition. I would have expected to see some level of impressions on computers, but this data would suggest that display ads are only showing on mobile devices or display network is no longer relevant to publishers with full websites.
I say or show this as it is quite obvious that the mobile clicks are all or predominately mobile click fraud. I can say this with some level of confidence as the test website in question and ads have a fairly long and successful track record over the past 5-6 years.
I’m going to continue running some tests, but wondering what other Adwords advertisers are seeing. Have you run any tests that shows computer / desktop impressions are getting less impressions and conversions than mobile generated impressions?
Share your comments below.
Not sure what’s up with Microsft Adcenter this evening. Appears there is some type of outage.
I received a message from Microsoft looking for beta testers for their new phone app for Adcenter stats, but I needed my adCenter ID. With the outage, no go and it beta sign up reads as though they are only looking for beta testers using Windows Phone 7…what about us iPhone and Android users?
Microsoft…get with the program. Advertisers looking to spend money with you shouldn’t have to jump through hoops, use a specific OS, or browser to access adCenter.
Are you a Microsoft adCenter advertiser? Do you use Windows or another OS, mobile or tablet device to access adCenter? Share your thoughts below.