Miranda Miller's blog

Google Extends Product Listing Ads to the Google Search Network

Good news for advertisers using Shopping Campaigns: Google is now allowing you to opt into displaying your Product Listing Ads (PLAs) on retail and e-commerce search partner sites.Displaying your shopping campaign ads across Google's search partners network helps you reach motivated consumers outside of the google.

com and Google Shopping environments.Where Will Your PLAs Appear?Google said the network includes "a small set of retail and commerce publishers." The example they used in their announcement was Walmart; in this case, an advertiser selling tailgate grills could have their ads trigger on the Walmart site when someone searches for a tailgating grill.It begs the obvious question: doesn't this potentially take sales away from the partner sites?Like any and everything Google does, thi... > Read more

September 12, 2014     |   Written by: Miranda Miller   |   Posted In: AdWords Tips   |   Comments: 5

New Google AdWords Callout Extensions How-To: Highlight Offers in Your Ads

Offers can be an incredibly effective conversion tool, and within the next few weeks, all Google AdWords advertisers will be able to highlight them in their search ads. Google is rolling out a new ad extension called Callouts that enables you to add more text to your ad to spotlight free shipping, discounts, price matching and more.

Callout extensions are similar to sitelinks, but without the links. Google recommends that advertisers use callout extensions to draw attention to unique selling points and important product details and benefits. You can feature up to four callouts in your ad, each limited to 25 characters each, and must have at least two callouts for them to display.Callout extensions can be used with other ad formats, like sitelinks, and are created, scheduled and managed with... > Read more

September 08, 2014     |   Written by: Miranda Miller   |   Posted In: AdWords Tips   |   Comments: 3

Google Gives AdWords MCC Users the Gift of Consolidated Billing

Google AdWords My Client Center (MCC) users have one more accounts management feature to love. Over the weekend, Google announced the rollout of AdWords Consolidated Billing, enabling agencies to combine multiple account invoices into a single one.Consolidated billing will also allow account managers to create, fund and manage AdWords budgets for new or existing accounts in the interface, without having to contact support.

New invoice structuring options enable you to combine everything in one invoice, or create multiple invoices based on segmentation by brand, location, division, etc.Another improvement is the addition of email delivery for invoices. Users can now choose to have invoices emailed, or download them at the beginning of the month. Previously, download and regular mail were th... > Read more

September 02, 2014     |   Written by: Miranda Miller   |   Posted In: AdWords Tips   |   Comments: 0

Bing Follows Google's Lead with Close Variant Matching

Not two weeks ago, Google effectively killed off the Exact and Phrase keyword match types in AdWords – pissing a lot of paid search managers off in the process – and now, Bing is following suit.Bing Ads is testing the inclusion of close variants in a portion of US exact match queries, according to an announcement on the Bing Ads blog.

Unlike Google, which removed the option to turn close variant in exact match off, Bing Ads will still give advertisers the ability to opt out of it (at least for the time being).If Bing moves this beyond testing and implements close variant in exact match across the board, it will affect all Bing advertisers, whereas Google's recent forced migration affected only about 3% of AdWords advertisers. Google took away the ability for advertisers to opt out, but... > Read more

August 26, 2014     |   Written by: Miranda Miller   |   Posted In: Paid Search Marketing   |   Comments: 0

Google Search & YouTube App Promotion Ads Launch Globally

As of today, Google’s app promotion ads, first launched on the Display Network in June, are now available across the Google Search and YouTube networks.It’s great news for app promoters, particularly those interested in the YouTube network, where users are 2.2x more likely to download apps. Promoting an app on YouTube is as simple as linking the app’s ID to an active TrueView campaign.

TrueView Mobile App Promotion AdsOn YouTube, the app promotion ads are an enhancement to TrueView ads and send users directly to the appropriate app store to download. You can choose an ad format optimized for app promotion that displays the app name, icon, price and ratings next to the video ad and in the ad preview.Advertisers can target YouTube audience members based on whether they've viewed content... > Read more

August 20, 2014     |   Written by: Miranda Miller   |   Posted In: AdWords Tips   |   Comments: 1

AdWords Now Lets You Measure Website Call Conversions: Learn More

You work hard to optimize your ads and either get consumers to your website or get them to call your business directly. But how can you tell when the person who calls your business did so as the result of your AdWords ads? If the number on your website and in your ads is always the same, you have no way of knowing.

Now you can measure phone calls that are triggered by your ads in AdWords. Google has just announced the launch of website call conversions, a dynamic forwarding number insertion feature that enables the measurement of calls from a website visitor who landed on the site as a result of an AdWords ad click. This is similar but not identical to WordStream’s own AdWords call tracking software (more on that later).The ability to track where your calls are coming from and how your PP... > Read more

August 19, 2014     |   Written by: Miranda Miller   |   Posted In: AdWords Tips   |   Comments: 2

Facebook Ad Revenue Sees Huge Growth Driven by Mobile Success

Forrester flat out says Facebook marketing doesn't work. The Atlantic questions whether any Internet advertising is effective at all.They must be feeling silly right about now. Clearly, someone is clicking those Facebook ads. A whole lot of people, it seems.Facebook just announced over $2.9 billion in revenue for the second quarter of 2014, a whopping 61% percent gain over the same period last year.

Advertising accounted for $2.68 billion of their total income, with mobile advertising responsible for 62% of the total advertising take. Over 1.5 million advertisers are now using their service, said Sheryl Sandberg.The social giant did manage to keep GAAP costs and expenses growth at a lower rate despite their astronomical revenue growth, up just 22% over Q2 2013. Overall, Facebook's GAAP net... > Read more

July 24, 2014     |   Written by: Miranda Miller   |   Posted In: Social Media   |   Comments: 2

The 15 Best Social Media Marketing Tips from the Inbound.org AMAs

In this latest in our series of the best tips from Inbound.org’s AMAs (Ask Me Anythings), we've rounded up the top social media marketing wisdom shared by expert marketers.Justin Isaf, Dharmesh Shah, Paul May, Oli Gardner and many others have given us all a chance to pick their brains in the Q&A-style threads on Inbound.

Here, you'll find the top social media marketing tips from the AMAs, organized by:Content promotion via social mediaSocial media marketing tools and tacticsSocial media measurement & ROIThe business of social media marketingBe sure to check out our first two posts in this series, 21 Content Marketing Tips from the Best Inbound.org AMAs and Best of the Inbound.org AMAs: SEO Edition.Image via New Old Stock PhotosPromoting Content via Social MediaOn creating content... > Read more

July 14, 2014     |   Written by: Miranda Miller   |   Posted In:   |   Comments: 5

What to Do While Matt Cutts Is on Leave

Google's Matt Cutts announced July 3 that he is taking a few months' leave of absence from his position as head of web spam to spend more time with his wife. He assured webmasters and SEOs that there are still a ton of resources people can use to keep up to speed and contact Google while he's away.Even so, some couldn't resist cracking jokes in the comments on his post about the black-hat mice playing while the web spam cat is away.

No, you shouldn't run out and buy some links now. What you can do is take this time as an opportunity to give your online presence and SEO strategy an overhaul. When Matt gets back, he'll be so proud of all the hard work you've done! (And in the meantime, this is really something you should stop and do once in a while – it's good for your business. People get ... > Read more

July 11, 2014     |   Written by: Miranda Miller   |   Posted In: SEO Marketing   |   Comments: 7

Best of the Inbound.org AMAs: SEO Edition

In this latest in our series of the best tips from the Inbound.org AMAs (Ask Me Anythings), we have a collection of awesome insights from top marketers in SEO.Annie Cushing, Ian Lurie, Rand Fishkin, Mike King and many others have participated in the popular Q&A-style threads on Inbound, where you're encouraged to ask them just about anything within their particular areas of expertise.

Here, you'll find the top SEO tips from Inbound’s AMAs, organized into business tips, tools and tactics, and industry buzz. Also check out:Best of the Reddit SEO AMAs 21 Expert Content Marketing Tips from the Best Inbound.org AMAsThe Business of SEOOn where to invest $200 in SEO if it just fell out of the skyI probably wouldn't use it at all. For the first 5 years of SEOmoz's marketing efforts, I doubt I... > Read more

June 16, 2014     |   Written by: Miranda Miller   |   Posted In: Search Engines   |   Comments: 3

Google My Business: The New Integrated Local/Social Dashboard for Businesses

Google this week announced the launch of Google My Business, a new program aimed at getting more business owners under the Google umbrella with a one-stop shop for managing their business listings in search, using Google+ and more. Google My Business is an offering for businesses just getting started on the web, but will also become the default dashboard for current users of Places for Business and the Google+ social network.

In fact, as of today, if you navigate to Google Places for Business from the US or Canada, you'll be redirected to Google My Business:This is a little unusual, as Google tends to release new products in the United States first, rolling out changes over a period of weeks or months. The incorporation of Google+ and Places for Business into Google My Business happened as ... > Read more

June 12, 2014     |   Written by: Miranda Miller   |   Posted In: Google   |   Comments: 10

Bing Ads Copies Google, Kills Mobile Device Targeting

Bing Ads plans to roll out two changes to its device targeting options: first, they will combine PCs and tablets into a single device, then eliminate mobile device targeting.The upcoming changes were driven by users basically telling Bing, "We want you to be more like AdWords," according to the blog post announcement.

While Bing Ads still offered the flexibility of device targeting, it made it difficult for some to manage cross-channel tools.Yes, this latest announcement is a far cry from Bing's April 2013 assurances, when they said Enhanced Campaigns are a bad idea. At the time, they assured advertisers then that they would not follow Google's lead by bundling desktop and tablet targeting. So much for that.However, their user feedback seems to indicate this change in direction is needed, ... > Read more

June 05, 2014     |   Written by: Miranda Miller   |   Posted In: Search Engine Marketing   |   Comments: 1

21 Expert Content Marketing Tips from the Best Inbound.org AMAs

Ask Me Anythings, or AMAs, have long been a popular conversation format on Reddit. More recently, they've really taken off on Inbound.org, giving marketers of all stripes the opportunity to pick the brains of industry influencers and thought leaders.Annie Cushing, Brian Clark, Avinash Kaushik and other thought leaders in our industry have participated in AMAs on Inbound over the last 18 months.

Typically, it's announced a few days ahead of time and participants come back over several days to answer questions from the community. The content tends to be laser-focused and super-high-quality – they don't go as off-track as you might see on Reddit, probably due in large part to the fact it's a niche site and the audience tend to be well-versed in the basics.Not a lot of questions like “Woul... > Read more

May 28, 2014     |   Written by: Miranda Miller   |   Posted In: Marketing Strategy   |   Comments: 7

Google Study Reveals What Local Mobile Searchers Want to See in Your Ads

What are on-the-go consumers looking for when they're using mobile devices to perform searches with local intent? Four out of five local searchers want the ads they see to be customized to their city, zip code or immediate surroundings, for one.They're also looking for information they can act on immediately.

Fifty percent of consumers who conducted a local search on their smartphone visited a store within a day, according to new research by Ipsos MediaCT and Purchased, commissioned by Google.Their study took place online in January 2014 and explored consumer behavior across nine different verticals including Auto, CPG, Retail and Finance. Each of the 4,500 study participants completed a vertical-specific online survey. In order to participate, they had to be at least 18 years of age, cond... > Read more

May 14, 2014     |   Written by: Miranda Miller   |   Posted In: Google   |   Comments: 2

Google Maps Favors Businesses That Get Clicked On More

When consumers are searching for local business information, it makes sense that so long as your business listing information is correct, your business will show on the map when the search includes your physical location and product/service … right?Not necessarily. Julie Bacchini from Neptune Moon shared an interesting blog post (aptly titled “This is Why People Hate Google”) last week that highlights factors outside of a company's physical address that may influence how and when your business listing will appear in local searches.

She started looking into the issue on behalf of a client who has had trouble getting their business listing to come up in local, relevant searches. In fact, according to Bacchini, the business appears on page two in Google's search results when people searc... > Read more

May 12, 2014     |   Written by: Miranda Miller   |   Posted In: Google   |   Comments: 10

Yahoo Gemini: Complete Guide to Yahoo's Mobile & Native Advertising Offering

Yahoo's Gemini marketplace for mobile and native ads launched in February and is now the default audience option in the Yahoo self-serve advertising manager. But what is Gemini and how does it work?Yahoo Ad Manager launched in January as a simplified platform for advertisers to buy and manage native ad products like Stream Ads, Image Ads and sponsored Tumblr posts.

Gemini was added to leverage the power of mobile and native advertising together; their native ads are optimized for tablet and mobile devices.Yahoo Gemini powers native ads that put sponsored brand content in front of Yahoo's 400 million monthly users in contextually relevant ways.But First…Why Native Ads?If you're not yet familiar with the format, native advertising is the increasingly popular method of reaching audiences wi... > Read more

May 06, 2014     |   Written by: Miranda Miller   |   Posted In: Paid Search Marketing   |   Comments: 3

Meet Bing Product Ads: Bing's Answer to Google PLA's

Just a few days after announcing the beta launch of Product Ads for Mobile, Microsoft has made Bing Product Ads available to all advertisers in the US. The new ad format, Bing's version of Google Product Listing Ads (soon to be replaced with Shopping Campaigns), allow advertisers to add rich images, prices and descriptions to ads appearing for e-commerce related searches across Bing and Yahoo.

Here's what the new Bing Product Ads look like:Bing Product Ads should definitely be considered for online retailers, given that the Bing/Yahoo network accounts for 117 million retail clicks a month, or 22% of all US retail paid clicks (comScore, June 2013).And Bing really, really wants you to use them – one of the key features is that advertisers can import right out of Google's PLAs. Alongside th... > Read more

March 26, 2014     |   Written by: Miranda Miller   |   Posted In: Paid Search Marketing   |   Comments: 2

Facebook Organic Reach Rapidly Approaching Zero

The organic reach of brand content on Facebook is rapidly dwindling, to the point you can expect it to peter out to nothing in the coming months.Facebook began restricting the organic reach of Page content in 2012 and has since seemingly given up on telling marketers they aren't going to have to pay to play.

In fact, Ogilvy cites anonymous "Facebook sources" as telling community managers they can expect Facebook organic reach to plunge to absolutely nothing in the foreseeable future.In their analysis of more than 100 brand pages in February 2014, Social@Ogilvy found that Facebook’s organic reach is just 6%, with large pages over 500,000 followers seeing just 2% reach. (Meaning, the bigger your brand, the more you're being pressured toward paid content.) These numbers are rapidly in decli... > Read more

March 12, 2014     |   Written by: Miranda Miller   |   Posted In: Social Media   |   Comments: 4

Bad Ads, Worse Ads, and Very, Very Bad Ads: The Worst of PPC

Larry Kim has been sharing a lot of research lately on the traits and features of winning AdWords campaigns, from those with mega-high click-through rates to those with best-of-the-best Quality Scores. In the course of seeking out examples of advertisers doing all the right things, we found many more who are getting it oh-so-wrong.

From dynamic keyword insertion abuse to crappy headlines and nonsensical ad copy, we've seen it all. What follows are a few epic fails I refuse to feel bad about pointing out, because someone really should have caught these by now. Is anyone home on the other end of these campaigns?Come, marvel at the mistakes, the missteps, the wasted opportunities. We're not just here to poke fun, though; there are important PPC lessons to be learned from each of the bad ads be... > Read more

March 06, 2014     |   Written by: Miranda Miller   |   Posted In: Search Engine Marketing   |   Comments: 9

More Ads Coming to Knowledge Graph: Google Testing Ads in Movie Results

Remember how we said wayyy back in 2012 that Google's Knowledge Graph feature was conditioning searchers to look to the right side of the SERP for information, where the ads usually go? Our conspiracy theory gets a little more credence today: According to Search Engine Land, Google is increasing their commercialization of Knowledge Graph and simultaneously promoting their Google Play service by testing movie ads in Knowledge Graph panels.

Back in 2012, this was just a theory and we had to give Google the benefit of the doubt – that Knowledge Graph truly intended to use this space for relevant, informative answers to questions and informational queries. But early on, Elisa theorized that Google had more nefarious intentions. What if Knowledge Graph was really about training the eye to see ... > Read more

February 20, 2014     |   Written by: Miranda Miller   |   Posted In: Paid Search Marketing   |   Comments: 4

Paid Ads Drive a Third of Traffic But Almost Half of Search Revenues – Here’s Why

As online shopping continues to grow as the commerce method of choice for US consumers, so too does the efficacy of paid search for internet retailers. MarketLive Performance Index data shows that as paid search drove 37.6% of all search traffic in Q3 2013, the channel produced a disproportionate 45.8% of all search revenues. That suggests, as we’ve said in the past, that paid search ads get the clicks with the most intent to buy.This was a 4.5% gain over the same period a year prior, when paid search accounted for 40.3% of search revenues. Online retailers are increasingly finding greater value in their paid search marketing campaigns.Image credit: MarketingCharts.comMobile traffic to the sites analyzed increased 56% YoY, with revenue from mobile visitors growing 65%. Tablet traffic was... > Read more

February 14, 2014     |   Written by: Miranda Miller   |   Posted In: Paid Search Marketing   |   Comments: 3

Uh-Oh, A Third of Your Display Ad Impressions Are Worthless! Here’s What to Do About It

Google Rolls Out Active View Metrics & Viewable Bidding to Counter Worthless Display Ad ImpressionsGoogle seems to be in the process of (finally) launching Active View features average CPM, viewable CTR and viewable impressions. I say “seems to be” as they have not yet made an official announcement, and no supporting material (i.

e., help documentation) is yet available.This is an important change because traditional impression-based bidding charges advertisers based on served  display ad impressions – a misleading figure, since, according to comScore, 31% of display ads are never actually seen by users. These features go some way toward correcting that shortcoming on the Display Network.Viewable CPM bidding allows advertisers to optimize their bids so ads appear in slots mor... > Read more

November 26, 2013     |   Written by: Miranda Miller   |   Posted In: AdWords Tips   |   Comments: 0

Small Business Saturday Advertisers: These 5 PPC Goofs Will Ruin Your Holiday Campaigns

Small Business Saturday might feel a bit weightier this year for many, given the shortened shopping period from Thanksgiving to Christmas. Individual retailers and restaurateurs participating in the annual holiday season kickoff plan to offer coupons, discounts and other holiday promotions, according to new research from American Express and the National Federation of Independent Businesses (NFIB).

This year, 70% of those participating believe it will help them attract new customers, and 67% plan to offer discounts to drive sales. Offering a free gift with a purchase is an incentive 33% plan to deploy. Notably, the number of small business owners planning to rely primarily on paid advertising to promote Small Business Saturday has doubled since 2012.Now in its fourth year, Small Business Sa... > Read more

November 22, 2013     |   Written by: Miranda Miller   |   Posted In: Paid Search Marketing   |   Comments: 8

Google Pushing Holiday Retailers to Use Both Text Ads & PLAs

Text ads and Product Listing Ads (PLAs) are more powerful used together, according to Google; in fact, using text ads alone means lower brand recognition, less site engagement and fewer online sales, they say.Google’s recent study, conducted in cooperation with research and consulting firm Millward Brown, shows that:People who see a brand’s PLAs and text ads are 75% more likely to search for that brand within 30 days than those who only saw text ads.

People who see both text ads and PLAs are 90% more likely to visit the retailer’s website. They are also more likely to visit product pages, add items to their cart, and click on store locator buttons.People who see both text ads and PLAs are 83% more likely to make a purchase than those who only saw text ads.Their findings pertain mostly... > Read more

November 20, 2013     |   Written by: Miranda Miller   |   Posted In: Paid Search Marketing   |   Comments: 3
 
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