So you are getting clicks onto your page but they are not converting to the sale. I see this quite often and there are several things that could be wrong, but first let congratulate you on actually getting traffic to your offer.
Wrong Traffic /Incorrect Targeting
Wrong type of traffic, Wrong type of traffic I hear you say how can it be wrong? Wrong traffic equates to unqualified traffic you may be incorrectly targeting via ads and/ or sending them to a location that is not in line with what they are looking for.
Does the page work properly many webmasters just assume that everything works OK all the time. A rouge update can mess with your site, if in doubt test.
Trust is very important dealing with a website that has no information about who they are or even an address can and will put people off straight away. I personally would never use a website that does not have at least a telephone number and an address.
How to build trust
Contact details that are clear and easy to find
An about us page
Pictures of staff and yourself
This is the one that's normally the problem, your offer is not a good fit.
Product to expensive
It could be as simple as your product is more expensive than your competitors, this is especially the case if you resell a commodity product such as washing machines or TV's. Consumers are very price sensitive and will almost always shop for the best deal.
Product to cheap
Sometimes you may be too cheap and this can be as bad as being too expensive as it puts doubt into the customers mind that the product is as good quality as others.
Not enough information
Consumers like to get a feel for a product or service to make sure it right for them not having the specifications of a product can turn people off. Images also fall under information as people like to examine the product so make sure you have good clear images.
Having clear delivery information can increase conversions dramatically if possible allow consumers to select a delivery date that fits around them.
PPC for Beginners Easy PPC Campaign Strategy
PPC or pay per click is the quickest way to get qualified traffic. In this short guide I will be guiding you through the process of setting up your first campaign.
I'm going to assume you already have your Google ads account set up, if not follow this link and get set up. Google ads
So you're just starting out in PPC and you need an easy PPC strategy to get you started on your first campaign. This easy PPC strategy guide is beginner friendly and will help you get started setting up your first campaign .
Lets start at the beginning, What is the goal? Is it to sell a product , get a lead or something else. Lets define our goal. For the most part, I work mainly in ecommerce so from my perspective my goal is to sell a product or get a call from someone looking to buy a product.
Setting Up Your first Campaign
Once you have you account set up we need to get our first campaign set up click on the highlighted tab that says campaigns then click on the blue circle with the plus symbol to start setting up your campaign
The ad needs to be specific and match the landing page. If your selling red widgets your ad should target red widgets, mention red widgets and land on a page that's about red widgets. Not only are you more likely to convert a visitor but if your keywords, ads and landing page match the users intent you will achieve a better quality score and google will reward you with cheaper clicks and more impressions than your competitors
Formula for deciding how much you pay and how may impressions you get
bid x quality score = ad score
Googles Being Kind (to its shareholders)
Google has started sending out notifications to its AdWords users that it will stop showing search term data for "low search volume keywords" the ability to optimise ad accounts spend for non relevant search terms is key to having a well functioning Adwords account. But it seems that Google is trying to hide terms from the account managers.
It begs the question, Why Does Google say privacy? I'm not buying it over the last few years we have seen Google trying to get more clicks on less relevant keywords through the close variant match type is this a way to squeeze more money out of advertisers what do you think?
This come soon after the announcement of new charges for advertisers in the UK and Other countries
Excerpt from Searchenginlands report on this change
Google Ads to limit Search Terms reporting, citing privacy
The impact will depend on what "significant" means, but advertisers are likely to lose visibility into at least some of the queries they pay for.
Ginny Marvin on September 2, 2020 at 3:47 pm
Google has begun alerting advertisers that it will soon stop showing search queries that triggered their ads when there is not “significant” data.
“We are updating the search terms report to only include terms that were searched by a significant number of users. As a result, you may see fewer terms in your report going forward,” the notice says.
New fees for Google Ads served in the UK and Other Countries
Ive just had this sent to my AdWords account it looks like Google is increasing its prices for the UK market
Dear Customer,On 1 November 2020, Google will begin charging new fees for ads served in the United Kingdom, Turkey and Austria.New feesAs of 1 November 2020, we will begin adding a fee to your next invoice or statement for ads served in specific countries:
Ads served in Turkey: a 5% Regulatory Operating Cost added to your invoice or statement
Ads served in Austria: a 5% Austria DST Fee added to your invoice or statement
Ads served in the United Kingdom: a 2% UK DST Fee added to your invoice or statement
The Regulatory Operating Costs are being added due to significant increases in the complexity and cost of complying with regulations in Turkey. In Austria and the United Kingdom, the DST Fee is driven by the new digital services tax in these countries.You can view a more complete description of fee changes, but here are the most important changes that may apply:Ads purchased through Google Ads
These fees will be shown on your invoice or statement as a separate line item per country. They will also be displayed in the 'Transactions' section of your Google Ads account. You'll be charged for advertisements served in the countries mentioned above.
Any taxes, such as sales tax, VAT, GST or QST, that apply in your country may also apply to the new fees.
If you pay through monthly invoicing or automatic payments, these fees will be added in addition to your account budget. For example, if you have a budget of €100 and accrue €5 in Austria DST Fees for ads served in Austria, you'll be billed €105 (plus any taxes, such as sales tax, VAT, GST or QST, that may apply in your country).
If you pay through manual payments, these fees may be charged after your payment has been fully spent. You may be left with an open balance that will be automatically deducted from your next prepayment. For example, if you accumulate €5 of Regulatory Operating Costs for ads served in Turkey, and you make a new payment for €100, you would have €95 credit towards displaying ads (€100 - €5), and your available balance would show €95.
Why are My Ads Not Converting
So here’s the situation you’re running adds spending lots of money but the conversion rate is in the pan so low that a limbo dancer would find it a challenge to get lower. Why is it happening and most importantly what can you do about it.
The first thing you want to check is that your tracking is set up correctly and do you have the right information to make an informed decision.
CTR Click Through Rate
The number of times your ad was shown divided by the number of clicks on the said advert.
The number of actions completed divided by the number of clicks you received. Examples of conversions are. Filled out a form, called you, asked for a brochure or made a purchase.
The number of times a person has landed on your page and then not gone any further or just clicked the back button without seeing any other content on your website.
The amount of time someone stays on your website
Macro & Micro Conversion
Simply put macro mean large micro means small. Macro conversions are the big conversions that lead to direct contact or a purchase or what I like to call money in the bank conversions.
A Micro conversion is not really a conversion in the true sense of the word but is more of an indicator of intent. If a person stays on the site for let’s say a set period of time we could say that they are more interested then someone who jumps on and then straight off a page. Other examples could be they read a few of your articles or added products to a cart. The behaviour you choose will be different for different websites.
Other examples could be that they scroll to the bottom of the content, or did they start to fill out a contact form but didn’t finish.
Tracking; are you tracking all the metrics you need to make an informed decision? As a paid advertising expert I would expect you to know your numbers but let’s be honest what numbers have an impact on conversion.
Why Track Micro Conversions at all
As we said previously its an indicator of intent once we are able to identify this behavior we are able to attach it to an anonymised user and using the tools and tracking available we are able to retarget either in search or via display advertising on both traditional media as well social channels. Once we can associate a behaviour with a conversion, retargeting can be a powerful way to get those lost conversions to buy or contact you.
Some Non-obvious reasons for failure
Mid-June 2020 I was checking my ad spend on a certain campaign and I noticed the CPA of a selected number of adgroups had increased quite dramatically. At first sight, I was at quite a loss to figure out why my CPA had increased until I looked at the search term report.
My keyword targeting was modified broad +Brand +Model-Name +Product so let’s use the example from the world of pushbikes, Brompton; the folding bike manufacturer. My targeting was +Bromton +ML6.2020 +Electric.Bike with a landing page for the Brompton ML6 2020 Electric Bike, so far so good. But Google in its wisdom had started showing my ads to people under the guise of close variant using the search term of “Brompton bikes” and for some searches Just “Brompton” to me this is crazy although the terms are related as in they are the brand but its not the intent i was looking for my aim was for people who know what the want and are either looking to directly purchase or searching for the best price. The intent I targeted and the intent Google decided to show my ad were at completely different ends of the buying funnel and more inline with the research phase of the process
Keyword Research Basics Where to Begin
I first wrote this article on keyword research back in 2009. Eleven years ago and most of the process is still the same. the Tools may have changed but the basics are still the same, a good grounding in the basics will set you up for the future. I will update this article fully in the near future to incorporate the new tools available. Stevie – May 2020
Keyword research is crucial for any search engine marketing campaigns including SEO & PPC knowing what to target so you receive qualified traffic is the most important thing you can do to make a search campaign a success. It's intent-based, we know what our prospective customer wants by what they type (or say, more on that later) into a search engine.
A little about what constitutes good and bad Keywords
My outlook is good keywords bring qualified customers that have the intention of buying, subscribing or performing the action that you require. Bad keyword either doesn’t have many people searching for them or bring lots of visitors who have no intention of doing more than just looking.
When I first wrote about keyword research things were a little different now its about theming of pages and using a LSI Pricaple (LSI stand for Latent semantic indexing)
Choosing your keywords
Your choice of keywords will be of utmost importance to the success of any site so take your time . The first thing to do is to pick what’s known as a seed word. Seed words are generic broad words related to the industry you’re targeting. So for some example seed words.
As we see these words are very generic. If we targeted these words and were successful in getting to number one we would get lots of traffic and maybe some sales but very few due to the words not telling us the uses intention.
The intention is why or what the user looking for, the more detail we have, the more sure we can be of the viewer's intention. if we take Computer as an example we ask the question is it a Desktop computer or a laptop computer, and so on until we get to a longer more focused phrase, for example: “Desktop computer Intel i9 processor” I like to call it the buying stages
Intention is key to the meaning
If we ever meet in person and get onto the conversation of marketing you will hear me talk about intention and intent rather a lot. For me, the intention is the foundation of search marketing. When a user types words into a search engine, they have an "intention" in mind, the intent can be to find out about the latest news, buy a product or connect with a long lost friend. When we choose our keywords and themes to target we should ask ourselves does my page match the intent that I am targeting.
Conducting the keyword research
First thing we need to do is get some keyword search volumes and statistics so lets grab our seed keyword and head over to the Google AdWords: You will need to create an account as if your setting up a
For this example I’m using Jewellery as my seed word and I’m presented with the following page I’ve selected phrase match and ordered the results by search volume.
Lets take the phrase costume jewellery we see that last month (Oct 09) we had 1.22 million searches that contained the phrase costume jewellery. thats a lot of searches
Expanding our keywords
There is two ways to proceed. To expand our keyword list the fist thing is to grab a two word phrase and pop is straight back into the Google keyword tool. This will give you more variations more closely related to your keyword phrase. The second option is to place your phrase in Googles second keyword tool called Search based keyword tool. How this one works is that it takes your phrase and finds the search queries that contain that those two words in any order. In this example I’ve taken the phrase “costume jewellery” and placed it in the search based keyword tool.
Search based keyword tool and search volumes
You may notice a little difference in the search volumes between the Adwords keyword tool and the search based keyword tool. The difference comes from using two different metrics, the standard keyword tool uses actual search volumes , that is the total number of searches over the whole of the Google network. The search based keyword tool uses the number of clicks a key word or phrase gets as an adwords ad. so you will see a lower amount on the search based keyword tool. From my experence a organic results get clicked on lot more often then a paid ads, so organic search volumes will be many times higher.
What we are looking for are phrases with high search volumes and low competition so we need to know roughly how many other sites are competing for these phrases. so we head over to Google main search page.
To find how many pages have the phrase on the page type in the search box “Your phrase”
To find out how many pages have the words in the title tag type “allintitle:Your phrase”
To find out how many pages have links pointing at them with the phrase as the anchor text type “allinanchor:Your phrase”
These search engine switch’s will give you a better idea of the true competition for that phrase. If the numbers look good we should be targeting that phrase.
Lets take the phrase Vintage Costume Jewellery I’ve checked the search volume in the Adwords keyword tool and it says for exact match search, the phrase was searched for 74000 times in Oct 09.
50200 pages have the phrase in that exact word order on the page
50800 pages have the title tag with the words Vintage Costume Jewellery in any order
40400 sites have links pointing to them with the anchor text Vintage Costume Jewellery
The numbers look OK. The difficulty to rank for this phrase would not be out of this world. Because the phrase is moderately focused we would see a good number of qualified customers arriving to a page that ranked for that phrase.
SEO How To Win In Long Term
What Is SEO and How Did It Come About
SEO otherwise known as search engine optimisation is the process of making content firstly, easy for search engines to understand and secondly rank well in the aforementioned search engines. In 2020 the most important thing for making your SEO efforts really successfull is to make it people friendly
The Early Days Of Search & SEO
In the early days of search, a search engine optimisation professional would do everything in his or her power to get a page to appear at the top of the search results page. In the very early days paid advertising was in its infancy or non existent. A lot of the search page real estate was given to organic results so a page ranking highly on the first page of the search engine results page could be in theory quite lucrative.
This would result in a flood of qualified traffic interested or even ready to buy the services or products on offer.
There was a catch to this. Search engines were young and dumb. Most of the algorithms worked on a principle of how often a word or phrase appears on a particular piece of content. So being smart people, SEO’s ( search engine optimisers) worked out that simply repeating words as often as they could resulted in higher rankings So rather then write good content they tried to cheat the system to achieve higher rankings. These pages were awful for a person to read and understand. This technique was known as keyword stuffing. This and other techniques were rife up until recently, the collective term used to describe these seo techniques are known as black hat SEO, gaming the search engines to gain rankings. Black hat SEO is still around today but as soon as the search engines know and understand these approaches they try to null the impact and penalise websites that undertake the practice.
Search Engine Optimisation in 2020
Fast forward to 2020 and we have search engines that are both smart and are able to return results that are accurate and mirror the user’s intent when performing the search. Its no mistake that google is the number one search engine in the world. Google has led the way, made it easy to find information that is both correct and matches what the user actually wants to find. We still get the odd search result that is incorrect but it few and far between. You might say that search is a never ending quest to return the best results.
Qualified Traffic Vs Traffic
SEO is about maximising qualified traffic, qualified is an interesting term what makes it qualified. Content has a job to attract your ideal customer and at the same time repel non customers. Non customers are people who will waste your resources but never have any intention of buying what you have to sell. When you write your content don’t be afraid of using your content to qualify your customers if you sell an expensive product mention the high cost (also include why it’s a high price) this will put off those who can not afford your product or service. traffic is all about getting real people who have an intent and the means to either learn, connect or buy, to view your content/offering.
Right Place Right Time
Being the best result means satisfying the users desire supplying the correct information, whatever it is, at the right time. Search is a fantastic tool for any business because you can present your offer to the right person at the time they are considering your service or product.
There is a common misconception that SEO is free traffic and this couldn’t be further from the truth. Time is valuable and if you’re reading this I would hazard a guess that your time has value.
Optimisation for search has to be viewed as an investment so a lot of time and money has to be invested in producing quality content, going over the content and performing the on page technical seo aspects of the project producing the assets for the article and lets not forget that there is also off page SEO to perform.
Once the content is complete we have to get eyes on it to see it. so promotion via social channels maybe even use paid advertising to get people to view it. Without people viewing our content its a complete wasted effort.
SEO is not hard and there is no secret sauce to pinch a phrase from one of my favorite movies, Kung Fu Panda. As with most things in life, it’s easy if you know how. But in reality its not overly complicated, It’s a process that can be broken down and repeated.
Pick a topic and do some keyword research around said topic. A good starting point would be using a search engine to see what other people are writing about your chosen subject. The starting keywords are important but not as important as they used to be. Now we look at it as a topic. By using a topic we have the ability to rank for multiple keywords and phrases expanding our reach,
Remember you are writing for people try not to worry about search engines when you start your piece. One of the best skills you can learn is the ability to write engaging copy. It is believed that one of the signals used to help rank content is something called dwell time, the amount of time a person stays on your page the more engaging your article the longer a person will stay on your content.
So what can you do to increase your search engine rankings, here’s a short guide to on page optimisation.
When writing about a particular subject there may be certain words that are semantically linked. To put it in layman’s terms its words that you would use to describe a certain topic or be included in the conversation about that topic. An example would be if you are talking about cars you may use terms such as engine, MPG top-speed, fuel economy etc. For the purposes of SEO using semantically related word will add context to your chosen topic allowing search engine to better understand your content and for that content to perform better in the search engine rankings. For a more in depth explanation take a look at semrush.com/kb/593-semantically-related-keywords.
Use headings to break up your content into skimable sections. When reading online people like to skim read and find the part of the document that contains the information they are looking for. Make it easy for them to do this by using descriptive headings that describe the content in the section that follows the headline.
Images should be used to enhance and illustrate the written content. The filename of the images used should contain some descriptive keywords related to your topic but also describe the image so the following image of a computer screen with the word SEO is simply called SEO-computer-screen.png
Alt text, I’m going to assume you are familiar, at least on a basic level with html use the alt tag to again reinforce the image content. I like to describe the image as if i was describing the content of the image to a blind person. This I find to be the most effective way to use the alt tag not to mention this is exactly how it was meant to be used.
Structured data is another way of telling the search engines what your content is about this is how Google describes it.