Posts Tagged ‘pay per click’
I have recently guest-authored a series of posts on mobile analytics strategy on the Google Analytics blog. Each of the three posts highlights simple yet key steps for marketers to track their mobile traffic and improve their returns.
For those of you on the go, here’s a quick glance at the material I covered. Try to make time to read each post in-depth, even if you have to read it on your smart phone!
1 – Look for Mobile Trends
In the first post, I detail how to monitor and analyze mobile traffic using key performance indicators. This is best done by customizing your GA settings to receive mobile traffic reports, custom alerts, and for the enthusiast, using the Google Analytics data export API.
2 – Give Your Reports More Dollar Power
So you’re mobile trends are positive, do you just throw the data to your boss? No. You always want to give your reports more dollar power. The second post centers on the power of presentation. If you’re CEO can easily connect the dots, two bottoms will be covered — your company’s and yours!
3 – Act on Your ROI
The average analytics guy will stop at step 2, but the third post encourages you to do more. Additional segmentation and leveraging AdWords’ reports will allow you the much needed visibility into campaign performance to maximize your results.
And There’s More!
For tor the technically inclined, and to get a more comprehensive perspective on your mobile presence, there is more you can do. Check out the code site page on mobile to:
- Track native iPhone or Android applications
- Track activities on websites from low-end mobile devices
And be on the lookout for niche analytics solutions specifically built for mobile.
Remember, it’s never too late to start maximizing your company’s mobile investment and implementation. Be sure to check out each post for more details and practical tips.
For more analytics tips and insights, follow @ferasa on twitter. Happy analyzing!
With the creation of smart phones and since your mobile device is conveniently available anywhere, mobile internet browsing has increased astronomically. As such, users have come to expect better experiences on their phone. Unfortunately, not all sites have a mobile version, which is a problem since there’s a good chance your site will look significantly smaller and possibly illegible on a mobile device.
This should raise a couple questions:
- Is your site compatible on all cellular phone platforms?
- Is the site being used on a cellular phone the same way it would be used on a desktop?
If you aren’t sure, don’t guess; check your analytics. Here’s a post on how to track mobile traffic.
Issues with Mobile Usability
The answer depends ultimately on the function of your site but of course regardless, browsing a website on your mobile is a much different experience than browsing on your desktop. That said here are some usability issues you may run into while browsing on your mobile:
- Excessive Scrolling – Phones have been getting smaller and sleeker over the past couple years, which means screens are even smaller. While the width of a standard desktop screen is around 1052px, the standard width for a mobile site is 250px. Unfortunately because of the small screen restriction, viewing a site is very frustrating because of scrolling and/or zooming in. I’ve run into this problem so many times, when I search on my blackberry, I always have to zoom into the site to be able to read, which of course means I have to scroll from right to left to read the content properly.
- Load Time – Non-mobile-friendly sites could take a long time to load.
- Page Height – Along with having to zoom, the page could be longer than necessary, causing the user to have to scroll down.
- Flash – If your site has flash, more than likely it will not be supported by all cell phone browsers.
- Mobile Location – Another factor affecting mobile browsing is location of the user. While computers are generally stationary, cell phones are used everywhere (hence the world “mobile”). The contrast of the colors and font size on a site may not be legible while using a cell outdoors.
Mobile Design Tips
Here’s a list of guidelines for designing a more-user friendly mobile site:
- Screen Size – Design your mobile site to be 250px
- Limited content – Since the width is limited, height may be used to fill in space that is lost with width. However, it’s best to avoid having a long page of content. After all, this is a phone and is still quite small. Whether its touch screen or keys based, it’s much harder to scroll up or down than it is on a desktop.
- Clear action buttons – Again, since the screen is small, it’s best to make sure if you do have images to make them clear, and if that means using the whole width that’s okay. Same goes for buttons, if there is a clear action, it will be seen, so the bigger the better. I highly recommend buttons over links; specifically for touch screen users. When trying to click on a link, it’s always so hard to actually click on the correct link. The link will usually be buried within text and other links.
- Create a separate mobile environment – administering a site that is optimized for a desktop that is at the same time 100% mobile friendly is very difficult since both natures are completely different. That would mean you’re essentially limited to the parameters of mobile (for example, when choosing the width of images for your desktop site, you’ll be nagged by the limits of your mobile resolution). It’s best to have a separate environment specifically catered to mobile screens allowing you to have freedom in both designs.
- Real Estate – Mobile “real estate” is very limited; to maximize the use of space in your design, simplify your site to the very basic functions of your company. For example, if your desktop has three panes; a side menu, content, and news. The side menu may not be completely necessary, especially since the navigation on mobile and desktop is completely different.
- Meet the user’s needs quickly – If the South Africa World Cup is the hot topic, and you’re cnn.com, make sure that story is visible above the fold right away.
- Clear functions – Make things clear and easy for the user to find. If you want someone to click on a button, make it large and bright to emphasize the action. For example, on a mobile site it would be smart to have a back button rather than a link because it’ll be easier for the user to find the button than a link since a link could easily get hidden through the text.
- Ease of use – The user shouldn’t have to waste time scrolling up and down looking for something that should be easy to find. For example, in tip #5, I talked about “real estate.” With a limited width, you lose a lot of space for content, but what you lose in width you can make up in the height. This makes it much easier for the user to read rather than having to scroll from left to right.
- Browsing Links – Use only basic browsing links such as home and back, you don’t need to include the whole menu that is on your desktop site. Make sure to add the browsing links at the top and bottom of the page.
- Search – For some sites, it is very important to have search because the site is search based for example, Google or Target. Google is search based links, while Target is search based products. If your site is search based, including two search boxes may be really helpful. Some companies have sites that are entirely search based such as Google, their desktop and mobile site is just a search bar. As for Target and Amazon their home pages have a search bar at the top of the page with browsing links below, which is another way to go because you can browse products as well as search for them.
- Testing – Lastly, make sure to test the usability of the mobile site on different phone browsers. This, of course, would be a separate checklist from launching your desktop site. Keep in mind, phones can be used in any location, for example, the contrast of a screen in the sunlight, has to be legible.
Having a mobile friendly site, will make it much easier for your customer to navigate, making for a better user experience, in turn, increasing your conversion. If mobile phones make shopping more convenient, you want to make sure your site takes advantage of that trend and make it easy for users to shop for your product as well.
And now that you have a mobile site, few things to keep in mind:
- Search engine optimization (SEO), here is a link from the Google Webmaster tool on how to Help Google Index Your Mobile Site. Mobile websites are often returned in Google mobile search results (and other search engines too) in preference to non-mobile websites.
- And once your mobile site is ready for prime time, you might want to drive qualified traffic through paid search (aka Pay-Per-Click) on Mobile, here are some ideas from the Google AdWords blog.
- Last but not least, you gotta measure! A separate mobile website is easier to track on all devices than an integrated website where the tracking code might not run on all devices. Try Google Analytics for Mobile.
We’re in the process of practicing what we preach, so keep an eye out for the E-Nor Mobile Site!
For more info on mobile usability check out the following references:
It is a crime to have your AdWords campaigns on auto-pilot!
Google AdWords Alert functionality allows you to proactively monitor your AdWords campaigns with custom alerts. Set your campaign criteria via custom alerts and AdWords will notify you within the account or via email.
Log into AdWords and Alerts will greet you and you are presented with changes to key performance indicators at a glance.
Increase Traffic with New Keywords Alert
Please note the keyword suggestions need careful review. Please take the time to review the keywords before adding, also consider giving feedback to AdWords regarding the relevancy of suggestions.
To support active monitoring of KPI fluctuations you want to track and take action on, email yourself the Alert. In the office or on the go, use the powerful AdWords Alerts to stay plugged in to your campaign performance.
Similar to the Google Analytics intelligence alerts, AdWords offers customizable alerts – thirteen alert types!
From Impressions to Conversion metrics, you can choose:
- comparison timeframe
- frequency of alert
- method of delivery
Powerful data formally requiring a manual investigation is now neatly delivered to your AdWords interface or email for quick action!
If you have a MCC, hang on because there is no alert access via MCC yet; you will have to log in to each account for Alert control.
See AdWords Alert blog post more details. This functionality is only available in the USA and a few other locations for now.
Integrating lead information from one system such as Google Adwords into a CRM like Salesforce is definitely not a new topic, especially since the Salesforce-Google Adwords integration has been announced for a while now.
I want to highlight the steps required for a seamless integration, as well as a few additional pro-active steps you want to take to keep your Google Analytics data clean. The same concept would apply to other analytics tools you might be running. As Avinash always reminds us, data accuracy is always one of the biggest challenges in web analytics.
Here are my steps:
- Create Adwords and Salesforce accounts.
- Link Google AdWords with Salesforce.
- Exclude SalesForce parameters from Google Analytics.
- Set up AdWords lead tracking.
- View report.
1) Create Adwords and Salesforce accounts
You need to have a Google AdWords account and a Salesforce account before you can integrate them.
2) Link Google AdWords with Salesforce
- In Salesforce, click the Google AdWords Setup tab.
- Enter your AdWords customer ID and login e-mail.
3) Exclude SalesForce Parameters from Google Analytics
When Salesforce performs its integration with AdWords, it appends parameters (_kk and _kt) to all destination URLs in your AdWords account. We suggest that you strip these query parameters out of URL to insure no duplicate entries in your Top Content report.
To strip the query parameters, please follow these steps:
*A note for AdWords managers. Keep in mind that when Salesforce appends the destination URLs with its _kk parameters, this is actually “editing” your AdWords ads and the stats associated with these ads will now reset, according to how Google AdWords works.
4) Set up AdWords Lead Tracking
- Back in SalesForce, click on the Google AdWords Setup tab.
- Click on the “Set up Lead Tracking” button.
i – Create a Web-to-Lead Form
- Click on the “Create Web-to-Lead Form” button
- Add the form to your page
<META HTTP-EQUIV="Content-type" CONTENT="text/html;
<input type=hidden name="oid" value="xxxxxxxxxxxxxxx">
<input type=hidden name="retURL"
<label for="first_name">First Name</label><input id="first_name"
maxlength="40" name="first_name" size="20" type="text" /><br>
<label for="last_name">Last Name</label><input id="last_name"
maxlength="80" name="last_name" size="20" type="text" /><br>
<label for="email">Email</label><input id="email" maxlength="80"
name="email" size="20" type="text" /><br>
<input type="submit" name="submit">
ii – Add the Salesforce Tracking Code to the Website
Add the following tracking code to every page of your site right before the </BODY> tag
<!-- Begin Salesforce Tracking Code -->
<!-- End Salesforce Tracking Code -->
iii – Test Your SalesForce installation
By clicking the “Test your Setup” you will be able to test the installation of the codes in step i and ii
5) View report
This report gives an overview of the leads submitted to SalesForce from your website
For more detailed information, click on each lead and learn more about the lead source
Urchin 6.5 was just released and we recommend you upgrade to take advantage of these new features:
- The best new feature: a Pay-per-Click (PPC) data manager lets you create PPC sources that automatically import cost data from Google Adwords.
- These PPC sources can then be applied to profiles as easily as you would apply log sources and filters!
- Currently, this feature does not work with the autotagging feature of Google Adwords.
- Urchin has been updated to show Chrome as a browser and Android as an operating system.
- The installer has been improved to make for a more seamless installation or upgrade.
- The Urchin configuration management utility has had its functionality extended.
- The geo database has been updated to December 2008 data.
- Some localization issues have been fixed.
- Urchin help topics (both internal to the application and in the online Urchin Help Center) have been updated.
Feel free to contact us for all your Urchin consulting needs.
You can also download Urchin from our Urchin software page.
In September of this year, Yahoo! announced the formation of a Digital Advisory Council to drive discussions with advertisers. Our agency was invited and we welcomed the invitation to listen to what Yahoo had to say and provide some feedback. Our office being literally less than ten minutes away made the decision a little bit easier!
During the meeting we were told that we are under an NDA so I won’t go into the specifics. But here are some comments and thoughts:
- We applaud Yahoo’s efforts to be open, reach out to their clients (advertisers and agencies), and solicit their input. That spirit was felt throughout the council meeting, from the Senior VP that hosted the event to managers and other Yahoo staff. They really wanted to be transparent and sought input from us. Good job, Yahoo!
- Despite the poor picture that might have been portrayed in the news about Yahoo and search, we were reminded that Yahoo! is still a profitable company and has some very high traffic sites, including Yahoo! Sports (we were told it has more traffic than ESPN) and Yahoo! News (gets more traffic than CNN). I didn’t know that and I would say it is pretty impressive!
- Various folks from Yahoo! presented about new features and innovations (sorry, can’t blog about it yet ) but expect to hear from Yahoo! on areas they are strong in, including Display (banner) Advertisement.
- There was a talk about Traffic Quality and the favorite discussion topic of click fraud. Without spilling their beans, we got a better picture of how Yahoo! handles click fraud and also learned that you can get reports from within your Yahoo! Search marketing account about credits your accounts is getting for false clicks.
- Lunch was really good too, including the Israeli Couscous which was very tasty! To be fair, I have to say that the food in Mountain View during the GAAC Summit was really good too.
So in summary, I am really glad to see Yahoo! opening up and creating additional forums to communicate with advertisers and agencies.
While we are on the subject of Yahoo! Search Marketing, there is another topic that we have been wanting to blog about but didn’t get to until now. Yahoo! has a mechanism of optimizing your accounts and campaigns on their own! Yes, that means without your
knowledge. Maybe this is not so recent but many clients I speak with are still not aware of this mechanism, so it is important that we share it. The following was drafted by a couple of folks in the office:
We hope you are aware of Yahoo’s decision to optimize PPC accounts by creating optimized campaigns on their own and running them without checking with the client. As strange as this may sound, it is very true
! For a regular advertiser who doesn’t tag his campaigns and review them in any analytics tool, this may not be that bad. For those who do tag their campaigns and review all of their traffic sources and conversions via an analytics tool, this could be trouble.
Yahoo does the whole nine yards when it comes to campaign creation (naming convention, ad group, keywords, ad copy) but they miss a very crucial step. They don’t tag the campaign at all with tracking parameters so a web analytics tool can recognize it as PPC traffic. This means traffic from this new campaign will be recorded as organic traffic and will dilute the quality of your data. The number of visits attributed to Yahoo cpc and Yahoo organic will be wrong, and conversion rates for these two sources will be subject to speculation.
There are two ways that you can deal with this issue:
- If you would like to try these optimized campaigns and see how they will perform while capturing the data properly in your analytics account, you need to go to your Ads under the AdGroup they created and make sure that you tag the destination URLs properly. If you are using Google Analytics, here is a good post from our friends at PPC Hero that will help you.
- Otherwise, once you see a new optimized campaign in your account, pause or delete it and make sure that you opt-out from this service. You can opt-out by submitting a request to Yahoo customer support.
If you have too many campaigns in your own or your client’s accounts, the easiest way to spot the Yahoo optimized campaigns is by their naming convention. See the below snapshot for an example.
My request to Yahoo! is that they back out of this practice and allow user more control before they turn campaigns on and spend someone else’s money!
|Back in November of 2006, our friends at GA Experts posted a method to get detailed PPC keyword data from Google Analytics. This method involved creating a seperate profile and using some intimidating but powerful filters. I really liked and referenced this method because it isolated the changes to a single profile and didn’t involve any updates to the GA tracking code. Obviously I would prefer if this feature came built-in to GA but at least now you could get to some very useful data with very little work.
As Google Analytics was updated over time, the way the filters were using Custom Field 1 was no longer possible and so the profile broke. The smart folks over at ROI Revolution came up with another way to get to the exact PPC keyword data using the User Defined field and adding 2 lines to the GA tracking code. This was a great solution and probably suitable for a lot of people. However, I preferred not having to update the tracking code (this can be very difficult on some client sites), saving the User Defined field for other uses, and also being able to isolate the keyword extraction and concatenation to one profile.
I still see some blogs referring to the original method that doesn’t work anymore so one day I tried playing with the original filters approach and after 2 months of observing the data, it appears to be working correctly. Please follow these screenshots & instructions to give it a try for yourself.
Filter 1 – look at only paid traffic data.
- From your account, click on Filter Manager.
- Click on Add Filter.
- Give it a name such as Data Filter – PPC.
- Filter type is custom filter.
- Select on the Include option.
- The filter field should be Campaign Medium.
- The filter pattern can be cpc|ppc
- Click on Save Changes.
Filter 2 – extract the actual keyword that was typed and concatenate it to the paid keyword that was matched.
- Assuming you are still in the Filter Manager, click on Add Filter.
- Give it a name such as Data Filter – PPC Keywords.
- Filter type is custom filter.
- Select the Advanced option.
- Field A -> Extract A should be set to Referral and the value needs to be (\?|&)(q|p|query)=([^&]*)
- Field B -> Extract B should be set to Campaign Term and the value needs to be (.*)
- Output -> Constructor should be set to Campaign Term and the value needs to be $B1 – ($A3)
- Field A required, Field B required, and Override Output Field all need to be set to Yes.
Please click on the screenshot to view the full version.
Finally create a new profile with a name such as PPC Keywords Data and all your usual settings (default page, search settings, goals, etc). Make sure you apply these two new filters to it.
This method seems to work for Google, Yahoo, and MSN paid traffic. Below is a screenshot with sample results. Let me know if it works for you!