This page will help you understand search engine marketing and how to optimize your campaign, both in the areas of pay per click and SEO.
We’re going to start with pay per click. With pay per click and Digital marketing agencies it’s important with all of your campaigns that you use a tracking code. If you don’t take the moment to put your tracking code on your landing page or whatever your action is, then you’re flying blind. Essentially you’re probably going to end up wasting anywhere from hundreds of thousands or tens of thousands of dollars depending upon how much you spend monthly. Take the time to get this done before you spend a dollar.
Then number two would be to monitor and adjust daily. Once you’ve got your tracking code in place and you’ve got your campaign going, don’t just let it run. You have to monitor it every single day. Look at every single key word. What’s working, what’s not and eliminate the stuff that’s not working and keep the stuff that does.
It’s very simple. If you don’t monitor it, every day that you spend, that you’re not monitoring it, you’re not optimizing your campaign and once again you’re losing money.
The goal is to get to a point down the road where you are only spending money on words or websites that make you money.
The number one area of pay per click is Ad Words. If you don’t know what Ad Words is it’s essentially Google’s pay per click system. These are the advertisements that show about organic search.
Now they’re broken down to textual and image ads. For textual ads you want to focus on two main areas, your Google Search and your Google network of sites.
You want to break these down into separate campaigns because if you don’t it can get confusing really fast and it’s hard to manage what’s converting and what’s not.
Let’s start with Google Search only. Whenever you’re choosing your key words you want to make sure you put brackets around the key words.
If you don’t put the brackets then Google just automatically gets any word that’s close to that word and puts your ad out there. Once again, it makes it harder to figure out what’s really converting because you may have one word like credit report, but if it doesn’t have brackets on it it may be showing up for thousands of words.
It’s impossible to find out which word is actually converting. Number two, focus on buyer words. When I say buyer words, it could be as simple as buy this product. Buy diamond necklace or for services, buy services or Search Engine Marketing services is another buy word as opposed to Search Engine Marketing.
Someone just searching for Search Engine Marketing by itself, they may not be a business at all and they may just be some person at home trying to find out more. A person that’s in that profession that is trying to find out more about Search Engine Marketing.
When you add services to it, Search Engine Marketing services, all of a sudden this breaks down and targets in on the people who are actually looking to spend money on services of a company. That makes a big difference between those two words.
Finally for Google Search you want to make sure you geo-target your region. Whether you are national or local, it really doesn’t matter. A national company with a headquarters in Houston, Texas is going to have a better chance of converting companies within Houston, Texas first.
You can have your national campaign and your regional campaign and keep them separate so you can manage both of them and then you can have ads for specific ones. If you’re a national headquarters with eight offices, you’ll want a regional campaign for each of those eight offices.
Whenever you create your advertisements you can make sure that those advertisements are tied into that city. For example, for Houston, you’d have Houston in the title and it would be Houston Search Engine Marketing services. That would allow people who weren’t showing up in Houston they identify right away as opposed to if you didn’t have a city in the title.
With Ad Words, the second aspect of textual ads will be the network. Network sites, these are essentially just any site that is signed up to a site called Ad Sense where they’re basically sharing 50% of the revenue, so 50% of the money that you spend goes to the site, 50% goes to Google.
Now there are some good sites in this. The downside is that anyone can sign up to this program. This is something that you really have to stay on top of. Some of the ways to do this is setting a budget for the daily spend for this, making sure that it’s a low budget. Maybe start with 25 or $50 and $1 per click or $2 per click.
That allows it to stop every day. When you do get the occasional bad couple of sites that are just pushing clicks and there’s no chance that they’re going to convert, you can block those sites immediately.
Now, for the domains that you identify on the Google network that are converting, you want to move those over to managed sites. It’s as simple as clicking on each of them and then pulling the drop down menu saying that you want to move those to managed sites.
The goal is after a couple of months of running through the Google network that you identify anywhere from 20 to 150 sites that are converting. Move those to managed and then eliminate the automatic placements because the automatic placements typically will not convert well and for the Google network campaign to work you have to actively go in and identify the sites that are converting and move them out and then eliminate the automatic placements.
The second aspect of Google Ad Words which shows the most promise are image ads. Image ads within the Google network work well because most companies do not take the time to make the images, so it’s real easy for any company to go into Google Ad Words and type up copy for a textual ad. It becomes increasingly difficult to make six or seven targeted image ads for different sizes and then have those approved by Google.
What you’ll find by going in this direction, you’re going to have lower pay per click and sometimes higher conversions. I highly recommend anyone taking the time to create the images.
You want to make sure that the images are very simple. Don’t complicate it with too many words. Get your action on there, maybe one image and make it congruent to the landing page.
If your ad is trying to get people just to click and it’s not in line with what you’re selling on your landing page, then you’re not going to have a good conversion ratio, so feel free to get less clicks and take the congruency over more clicks and less congruency.
Then the other area of pay per click is Bing and Yahoo. Ad Words is king so you definitely want to start there first, get that down, spend all your time there and then once you monetize Ad Words and you can’t make any more money off of that then move to Bing and Yahoo to try to push it a little further.
At the end of the day the textual ads on Bing and Microsoft don’t cover the ground that Ad Words does and it’s widely noted that they don’t convert as well as Ad Words also. For whatever reason the people that are on Bing, Microsoft sites, they just don’t convert the same way as they do when someone does a Google search.
Whenever you set up your textual ads with Microsoft and Yahoo, make sure that you chose the checkbox, Microsoft owned sites owned or Bing owned sites only. If you don’t chose that the conversion ratio, it isn’t going to have a chance.
Most of the other sites that are grouped in that aren’t Microsoft only sites are very poor converting sites and it will ruin a campaign.
That’s pay per click. Let’s go ahead and move onto SEO. With SEO it starts with key word research.
Now what’ll happen is you can use a lot of the key word research that’s been compiled in your pay per click program, so if you’ve been running you Ad Words for a couple of months and you’ve identified 10 to 15 words that convert consistently, those 10 to 15 words are going to essentially be your primary words that you’re going to focus your SEO campaign on.
At the end of the day you don’t want to drive search engine optimization traffic to your website that doesn’t convert. It’s just a number at the end of the day. It’s just traffic.
You want to make sure that you are focusing on converting traffic and that’s why it’s good to use the Ad Words data that you’ve compiled with your campaign in regards to conversions.
Secondly, you want to do a competitor analysis. Your competitors have been doing this for anywhere from 10 to 15 years and they’re information is readily available through a program called SEM Rush.
SEMRush.com, they have a free version and then they have a paid version that allows you to see where they’re ranking and where they’re getting their traffic from from an SEO perspective and from a pay per click perspective.
When you’re setting up your pay per click campaign you can also lean on SEM Rush. With your key words, you want to break them into primary and secondary. We talked about how primary, those are the ones that are converting the most for pay per click.
Secondary, those are everything else that you think has a chance. These are also your longer-tailed key words. Your primary key words may be anywhere from two to three words per phrase or your secondary key words may average four to five.
The second aspect of SEO to focus on is analytics. Everyone, I recommend using Google Analytics. It’s free and it’s the easiest one to understand. It’s kind of the universal area that all marketers use as the basis for their analytics.
It’s free. Got to focus on the free part. With your analytics you want to to look for low-hanging fruit, so you run your analytics first because you may have pages that are showing up on SEO for certain terms that you’re already getting traffic for.
By going into your analytics and looking at the organic search results that are driving traffic, you might be able to identify areas that you can optimize a little bit better and move from a number seven ranking to a number one which could triple or quadruple the traffic that you’re getting.
The third area is on-page optimization and this is old school, but it still plays a big factor.
The two primary elements that you want to focus on initially are your title and description because this is what people will see when they do the Google search and it will determine whether they click on it and once again, going back to the congruency of your title and your description to the landing page so that they stay there.
If they just click on it and see that it has nothing to do with what it showed up as, then they’re going to back out and that could hurt your rankings long term.
The third are is link building and this is another old school area that has been effected by the most recent Google updates, but where it stands right now, you want to focus on white head only, so white head only means things that are good.
Anything that might be suspicious, whether it’s buying links, getting 100 links at a time, don’t do it.
White head only is doing it the hard way, one link, one site at a time. You want to focus on anchor text diversification so as you get your links, whether it’s an outreach program or something else, you want to make sure to rotate your anchor text.
Anchor text is essentially, if Search Engine Marketing is the word that you’re focusing on you don’t want Search Engine Marketing every single time for every single link. You break it up, Search Engine Optimization, Search Engine Marketing, Search Engine Marketing Services, Search Engine Services, variations like that.
You want to do a competition analysis also when it comes to links. Your competition, once again, has been doing this for years and they’ve probably identified some places where they can get really good quality links for, that might be free to just send out an email or fill out a form and you can get that link.
The best site to use for that is Open Site Explorer. You can do a search on the internet, Open Site Explorer and you’ll be able to pull that up.
Once again they have a free version and they have a paid version. The paid version will give you a little bit larger scope, but start with the free and see what happens with that.
Finally, Social Signals. Social Signals is the faster growing element of the SEO algorithm especially in regards to Google and Bing. This is going to be around moving forward. The areas to focus on are Facebook, Google Plus, Twitter and Pinterest.
For Google, Google Plus plays the largest role and you just want to make sure you do that organically and you can do creative ways you could set up a Google Locker and provide some sort of content for people to get to if they Google Plus it. Then you can rotate out your homepage and your different service areas to increase the Plus ones.
Then finally with Social Signals, the location of the buttons is key. Whatever pages you’re driving traffic to, you want to make it very clear where those buttons are and then re-tweet it, like it on Facebook and add the images to Pinterest and then try to incentivize them to get the click.
If you do these basic elements for SEO and the pay per click, I think you’ll find that your campaigns are going to run a lot smoother.
Once again thank you for taking the time to listen to this tutorial on Search Engine Marketing and feel free to click the link below and set up a consultation and I will talk to you personally.