Successful Pay Per Click = Site, Syndication, Selection, Sale Price, Service, & Social
In A Changing PPC Market, Shore Up Your Business This Holiday Season
There have been many changes within the PPC industry, including fundamental shifts in how the search engines are working which effects the landscape of PPC advertising. Exclusive Concepts PPC Team tracks these efforts and lately a narrative has begun to emerge. We review these changes below, and more importantly, what they mean for you as a retailer.
As the PPC landscape shifts, it is important to recognize what is happening and adjust so you are not left behind this holiday season. Beyond your advertising efforts, look at your store holistically and take the following into account:
- Site: Review your site navigation & conversion paths
- Syndication: Syndicate your products to ready-to-buy shopping engines, encourage product & store reviews
- Selection: Take a look at your product selection, can you still compete in a more competitive landscape?
- Sale Price: Make sure your sale prices and promotions are engaging, you don’t need to have the lowest price to provide value
- Service: Value your clients, provide the highest level of service you can
- Social: Evangelize this commitment, and your brand within social communities
If you are an online merchant, it is more important than ever to bolster your site and sales process to better convert the traffic that is coming in to get the most value out of it. We are heading into a holiday season that has many uncertainties and you are clamoring for answers. Good news, Exclusive Concepts has them!
What will the Yahoo!/MSN transition mean for my store?
The marriage of the #2 & #3 search engines are meant to combat Google directly. After the transition is complete, you will not be able to choose to target one or the other; instead, advertisers have to target two distinct audiences on Yahoo! & Bing, with one set of advertising. Instead of speaking directly to the youth around Yahoo!, or the more middle-of-the-road types on Bing, a message needs to encompass both, and more importantly your site needs to convert both. Make sure your site navigation is quick and intuitive, it should not be bogged down with unnecessary clicks. Test your conversion paths and make sure they are effective.
What is the effect of Google Instant on my PPC?
Meanwhile, Google has not sat idly by, they have been developing their advertising to be more in-depth; integrating local & product data with the ads, creating a remarketing channel, and even creating Modified Broad Match keyword types. This has all culminated with a new search experience they named Google Instant. The net result of all the advancements has left the search space much more competitive. You need to syndicate your products to shopping engines to cull reviews and ratings, as well as to Google Shopping (a phenomenal source of free, ready-to-buy traffic) to enable product extensions with your ads. The ratings and reviews bring trust to the forefront and enables you to build on past sales.
These changes are also effecting search behaviors and as more data comes in the picture will become clearer. So far we can see a shift in traffic going to more generic keywords, or head terms. This means more competitive, costly, and less qualified traffic to court for the sale. As a merchant, you have to review your market position; it is now more important that you have a strong value proposition for your customers to choose you. Whether it’s your selection of goods, your sale prices and promotions, or the level of service you provide. This needs to be optimized and brought to the forefront in your sales pitch to compete with a wider field.
There is also remarketing, which is targeting your site traffic, after it has left your store, as they surf across the web. It should be subtle, though can be targeted based upon what pages were visited. We have seen it positively impact one important stat, View Through Conversions. This metric reflects how many people were on a webpage that your ad was on, did not click on it, but still converted. Again, it’s a subtle reference to reinforce your site after they discovered you. By instituting remarketing campaigns, you can welcome searches that are more generic or earlier in the sales process and then court them as they make their purchasing decisions.
With all that we discuss here, it can all be bolstered by increasing the trust a consumer will have in your site. The social layer that has gone mainstream this year cannot be ignored. Reinforce your brand, your promotions, and your store through Facebook & Twitter. Not necessarily investing in social advertising, but definitely take some time every day or at least every week and keep a presence there. More and more, consumers are looking for trust, and affirmation of their decisions. By having a social presence you can breathe life into your store and show your customers that you care about their business.
This article assumes your pay per click efforts are established. There are thousands of ways to optimize your advertising, the biggest of which is having a strong PPC structure in place that reflects your business and gives you the insight you need. By taking a look beyond your campaigns, it will lead to more successful PPC advertising in a changing market that is the reality of this holiday season. The sun is setting on those stores that were successful scraping sales from the bottom of the market, and not willing to invest in their business. Now is your chance to gain a much stronger foothold in your market. If you have questions about how your campaign is setup, sign up for one of our Profitable PPC Audits and learn more about our eCommerce PPC solutions. Sign Up For An Audit
Many of these new developments and strategies laid out have been covered individually during Exclusive Concepts’ PPC Tuesday video series. If you are not watching them, sign up and get them delivered straight to you every day for free! Subscribe To Daily Videos