Nana Gilbert-Baffoe's blog about affiliate marketing and related topics that will be of interest to affiliate marketers.

Monday, August 20, 2007

Google AdWords Site Targeting Is Hot Stuff

I've always felt Google's Site Targeting for AdWords could be a powerful addition to many PPC search campaigns, however I will admit that I haven't really spent as much time with it as I would have liked.

However over the past few months, I've been working with a client who had a pretty good site targeted campaign already in place. With a bit of looking into and tweaking, I was able to tweak it to go from good to fantastic. As of this writing, his site targeted campaign brings in more traffic, leads, and profits that his regular search network campaign.

Here are a few tips to help you out

1.You Must Use Conversion Tracking
If you are not using conversion tracking you are going to be wasting a lot of money. In fact, stay away from site targeting, if you can't track how well it's working for you. If you are running a campaign without tracking, stop everything you are doing and put conversion tracking codes on your site today. I like Google's own home brew the best (Analytics and Conversion Tracking) because of how easily it integrates with AdWords.

2. Reports Are Your Friend
The New Placement Performance report helps you see which domains and urls are working for you. In the settings, I recommend choosing a url report instead of a domain report since this give you a break down of which pages are actually working and converting for you. You'll find out that some pages on a domain convert much better than others. This report is probably worth reviewing daily.

3. Watch Out For Rogue Sites
Upon inspection, it turned out that the best converting site in the campaign was also burning a lot of cash. As a whole, the site was converting very well, with lead costs well under requirements. However my Placement Performance report showed that ads on the home page were costing us over $80 a lead. Other sub pages were working so well that the over all lead cost for the domain was under $20. It turns out the site in question was automatically refreshing the home page every few seconds driving costs through the roof. After fixing this issue, by removing our ads from the front page, our lead costs are now less than $4 on most days and the number of leads we get a days is actually up. This fix alone saved the client at least $3000 a month in wasted advertising costs. This saving has now been diverted to the urls that are working the best, so you can imagine ROI is up.

I could go into this topic a bit further, especially advice on how to pick the best sites for site targeting etc. But I'll leave that for another post.

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