Google Adwords Search Network Only Issues

I managed Google Adwords at a very high level for nearly 9 years managing a monthly ad spend of $200k+ per month. Think of the ramifications if you didn’t recoup your ad budget with that type of burn.

Today, I’m looking at live website traffic via Wordfence and astounded to see how much Google Adwords traffic is coming from doubleclick and parked domains.

Under my campaign settings, I’m set for Google search and search partners. One would assume that this would be premium traffic from legitimate mobile or desktop searchers landing on Google.com or a partner website. (whatever that really means)

In my opinion, parked domain traffic is some of the worst potential traffic and Adwords customers should not be paying a premium for clicks coming from parked domains. I put these types of domains up there with the “Display Network” traffic. While some publishers try to make money by running Adsense or DoubleClick and creating great content to draw a real audience, others have mastered the art of “click fraud” on parked domains and similar Adsense sites.

With the Display Network, you can monitor conversions and even block domains that don’t generate conversions at your targeted numbers or CPA. With parked domains running under Google’s “Search only and search partners” you have no way of managing these sites…and I think Google is keenly aware of this. I’m hoping at some point Google will create a distinction between “Search only” and “Search Partners” so you can turn off “search partners” if you choose or manage the conversions that come from search partners.

The only way you can catch this activity is by monitoring live traffic coming to your site or a third party analytics tool…not “Google Analytics”.

So Google…if you by chance happen to catch this short write-up, I hope you’ll consider giving Adwords advertisers more control over what types of traffic we get via Google search only / partners and the ability to block or turn specific types of traffic off.

Here’s my final thought. I think Google knows very well that by keeping the curtains closed on search only partner traffic they have a better ability to dial or tweak the type of traffic a specific advertiser receives. This allows them to send more direct search traffic from Google search while less important advertisers get a blend of search only and partner traffic.

What are your thoughts on the quality of traffic coming from Google search only partners?

PS – When talking to Google Adwords rep, I asked him the difference between Adsense traffic (Display Network) and DoubleClick traffic (Search Only / Partners) traffic. Supposedly, DoubleClick is for high-end advertisers / clients with big budgets. So if that’s the case, why would DoubleClick be involved with parked domain traffic?

Making The Million Dollar Club – Google Adwords

We’ve recently broke in the the Google Adwords million dollar club. While it’s taken us some time to reach this goal there are companies that spend a million+ on Google Adwords advertising each month.

Here’s a small screen shot from our account  below>>>

If you are looking to get traffic to your website, advertising with Google Adwords is the fastest way to do it. You can set up an account, load it with funds from your credit card and then start getting traffic in as little as 15 minutes. We’ve had our ups and downs with Adwords, but we’ve been profitable.

I’m in the process of getting my referral codes from Google to give potential new advertisers anywhere from a $50-$100 credit for setting up a new Adwords account.

Want to get the most out of Adwords? Perry Marshall wrote the first book on Google Adwords. You can get a copy of his book here:

What is Google Adwords?

Google Adwords is essentially an auction style of bidding on specific keywords for placement on Google SERPs – Search Engine Results Page(s) Check out the screen-shot below:

Click image to enlarge

Socrates Theme Issues | SocratesTheme.com Outage

Today I attempted to view several sites that I have running on the Socrates Theme by Joel Comm and they took 30 + seconds to load if they loaded at all. This has been an ongoing issue so I decided to post something or look around on the Socrates Theme forum. I hit the home page, logged into the forum, and bamm! Here’s a screen shot:

As you can see, socratestheme.com is or was down. As of this writing site has not come back up.

I think there is an undisclosed issue regarding theme licensing and Joel’s server loads (just a guess)

Just to be sure, I checked some of my Socrates Themed sites and some of my other WordPress sites from two different Internet connections with static IPs on two different ISPs. Each time, my WP sites not using Socrates Theme loaded extremely fast while ST sites took 30 + seconds to load or did not load at all.

In the past when I’ve experienced this issue, I would attempt to open a Socrates theme site in Safari browser and would not have issues with loading. Today was different.

This is a major issue for Socrates theme owners if their site(s) must authenticate a license before a site can load. (Again, I’m drawing some conclusions, but it seems pretty obvious)

Joel typically puts out top notch stuff so I’m sure he and his team will get this resolved. But for now, those of us who are relying on our sites to load quickly and efficiently are out of luck today. It could be even worse if you are spending pay per click dollars and your site is not loading properly.

As soon as socratestheme.com comes back online I’m going to post in the support forum and will report back with resolution.

For now, I’ve switched this site back to my old them until the issue is resolved.

Continue reading “Socrates Theme Issues | SocratesTheme.com Outage”

Google Instant Search – Advertiser Issues

With the release of Google Instant Search (see image below) there seems to be much mixed emotion from pay per click advertisers. With Google counting and ad impression if a searcher pauses for three seconds; the amount of time it takes to sneeze or sip a cup of coffee, the advertiser is charged with an ad impression. One of my business associates saw normal impressions for a keyword go from 800,000 impressions per month to over 1.8 million impressions after Google Instant Search was launched. The net effect was it cut their click through rate in half (CTR) and nearly killed conversions for one of their bread and butter keywords.

Unfortunately, for me to do this test, the advertisers in the screenshot below were all charged with an ad impression. I’m guessing this has advertisers (including myself) scrambling to change up our pay per click advertising a bit. What I’m wondering though is how many Google Adwords advertisers are seeing their conversions and CTR (click through rate) drop since Google has implemented Instant Search.

If Google Instant Search has affected your business negatively, post a response below. Alternatively, if you have seen an increase or performance improvement in your pay per click advertising since the release of Instant Search we want to hear from you as well.

The other issue I’m wondering about is what do searchers think about all of the dynamic stuff going on in the background as you start to type in a keyword phrase? Do most users want to see organic and paid results instantly changing as they type in a keyword phrase. Share your thoughts below.

Video Search Engine Marketing

Recently I received an email and video offering a new service and software product allowing the average person to add video quickly and easily to any website. The video pitch goes on to state that utilizing YouTube, Revver, and other similar video services shows visitors to your website that you don’t know how to add video, it’s cheap looking,  and you give visitors the opportunity to click off your website.

I must respectfully disagree. There are numerous reasons why someone looking to utilize video marketing would want to utilize YouTube and similar services:

  • YouTube and Revver type video services get indexed by the major search engines much better than self served video from your own website.
  • YouTube and similar type video services put your video, product, or service in front of a wide and growing audience.
  • If you are using video and not showing up on YouTube or other similar video services you are missing an important marketing avenue.

While one can argue that third party hosted videos give visitors the opportunity to click off your site or check out another video, that’s true of any form of Internet marketing. Whether you’re talking about SERPs, PPC, directories, etc. there is almost always an opportunity for a visitor to go somewhere else.

Video marketing is subject to some of the same principles as other forms of Internet marketing. How well is your video message? Does your video communicate your product or service effectively? Is your website and internal processes set up adequately to take orders, inquiries, or help a potentially new customer?

Hosting and adding video to your personal website is nothing new. Bandwidth pricing is so favorable that you can purchase additional bandwidth to support your videos for pennies. A quick Google search will reveal a number of free and inexpensive tools that will help the average person put video on their website quickly and cost effectively.

What are your thoughts on adding video to your website? Are you using video? Why or why not? Share your thoughts with our visitors.