5 Adwords Features To Be Using Now

Enhance your PPC efforts with 5 easy AdWords features that you can use today!

AdWords can be a great tool for attracting more traffic to your website and getting more brand exposure; but just running ads can be complicated enough, let alone trying to navigate all of the features that AdWords provides. At the end of the day, the most important factor is running successful ads that utilize your budget effectively, and these 5 features make it easier for you to do so. So whether you are running an AdWords campaign currently or just starting out, here are 5 features you should be using now.

1. Extensions – Extensions allow you to enhance your ads and provide a richer experience for users. They give searchers more reasons to click on your ad by offering additional information and ways to connect with your brand. Plus, they’re free to use. With extensions, you can add information about your location, give users the option to call your business from their mobile phone, connect with you on Google+ and much more. There are currently 8 different extensions that you can choose from and you can enable them on a new or existing campaign by navigating to the ‘Ad extensions’ tab of your campaign.

2. Dynamic Keyword Insertion tool – This is a very handy tool that helps to make ads more relevant to a searchers’ query. When using the Adwords Dynamic Keyword Insertion tool, if any of the keywords you bid on match the searchers’ search terms exactly, that keyword will be automatically inserted into the ad. If there is a match, the keyword will also appear bolded in the ad, which helps to increase the click-through rate of your ad as well. To use the Dynamic Keyword Insertion tool, all you have to do is insert a small snippet of code where you would like the keyword to show up in your ad. The snippet you’ll enter is {keyword:default text} but you’ll replace ‘default text’ with a default keyword in case there aren’t any matches, or the match exceeds the 25 character limit for the headline. Just make sure all of the keywords you are bidding on would make sense if they were inserted into your headline or ad copy.

3.  AdWords Keyword Planner – The Keyword Planner generates keyword ideas and displays the respective traffic and competition for those keywords to aid in ad creation. The Keyword Planner also gives you estimates for the average CPC for each keyword so that you can estimate your cost for bidding on those keywords. Being able to gauge the competition and price for certain keywords can help you create more effective ads and set realistic budget expectations.

4.  Search Terms tool – While the Keyword Tool helps you to come up with new keyword ideas, the Search Terms tool gives insight as to which keywords and phrases have actually been used prior to clicking on your ad. The search terms tool is extremely helpful in determining the types of keywords and phrases searchers are using to find your ads, and may reveal new keyword opportunities that you had not been using previously. In addition, the Search Terms tool can also help you identify keywords that should be added to your ‘negative keyword’ list. You can find the Search Terms tool under ‘details’ in the Keywords tab.

5. Auction Insights tool – Wouldn’t it be interesting to see which companies are also bidding on the same keywords that you are, or even outbidding you on certain keywords? That’s precisely what you can find out with the Auction Insights tool, located directly underneath the Search Terms tool for any particular campaign, ad group or individual ad. The Auction Insights tool allows you to keep a close eye on the auction and gauge how your ads are being shown in comparison to your competitors.

While this is only the tip of the iceberg when it comes to AdWords features, utilizing these 5 features and tools can help you to create more effective and successful ads. For more information on AdWords or for a free assessment of your current AdWords strategy, contact us.

Submitted by Erica Machin, PPC Titan

10 Eye-Opening Social Media Facts From 2013

To say that social media was big news in 2013 is an understatement.

While it has been a trending topic for a few years now, 2013 was the most notable. 2013 turned social media critics into supporters, brands into customers and marketers everywhere into advocates. Prior to 2013, many people and brands, Google’s Eric Schmidt included, underestimated the growth and value of social media.

Eric Schmidt admitted, “At Google, the biggest mistake I made was not anticipating the rise of social networking phenomenon. Not a mistake we’re going to make again.”

Social media has finally proven its stake in the marketing world, and brands have realized the potential it offers. It’s safe to say that social media is here to stay; at least for now. Here are 10 eye-opening social media facts for 2013:

  • Facebook has reached 1.15+ billion users
  • 23% of these users access their Facebook account more than 5 times per day
  • 74% of marketers believe that Facebook is important to their lead generation strategy
  • Twitter’s fastest growing demographic are users between the age of 55 and 64
  • On average, 400 million tweets are being sent each day
  • Google+ has exceeded 500 million total users
  • 40% of marketers use Google+, with 67% planning to increase their Google+ activities this year
  • LinkedIn now has 238+ million users. 50% of those users have a Bachelor’s or Masters degree
  • Instagram has exceeded 130+ million users

Procrastinating and not participating in Social Media now comes at a great cost. There is not a fast track way to catch up.

Amazed? The sheer volume of social media users is not only incredible but also means that your customers are on social media sites. Here are a few tips on how to take advantage of it:

  1. Get active on the accounts that make sense for your brand. If you were targeting a mostly male audience than Pinterest would probably not be the best platform for your business. Think about your audience, research their habits and choose social media networks that make the most sense.
  2. Post consistent, relevant content. You must be committed to using social media for it to benefit you. If you want to leverage social media to your best ability, you must consistently post and maintain an active presence on your sites. Remember that your brand and audience are essential components to the topics you choose to post.
  3. Take a stab at advertising. Advertising on social media offers great targeting features so you can dial in on your audience. It will also help to boost your brand and content, all while receiving additional exposure for your business.

If you have any questions about social media marketing or are looking to pump up your social media SEO strategy in 2014, please contact us!

Submitted by Erica Machin, Titan Growth

5 SEO Techniques To Leave In 2013

We all know old habits die hard. Unfortunately, in the world of SEO using, old methods could mean major consequences.

In a world where the only constant changes, SEO’s are forced to kick old habits and evolve their strategies. Here are 5 techniques to leave back in 2013.

1. Over-optimized anchor text links

SEO’s got hit hard for spammy links in 2013. Any link that has manipulative characteristics could be devalued, or even worse, provoke a penalty. One of the many things Penguin 2.0 focuses on is over-optimized anchor text links. Google gives this example:

There are many wedding rings on the market. If you want to have a wedding, you will have to pick the best ring. You will also need to buy flowers and a wedding dress.

It is apparent that these links are for the sole purpose of search rankings and not geared towards informing users. Focus on natural linking that helps users better navigate your website. Your users and the search engines will thank you for it.

2. Using advertorials and press releases for backlinks

Documents that are exposed to mass distribution online, like press releases and advertorials, offered a quick and easy way for SEO’s to obtain backlinks and it worked; for a while. Google caught onto this quickly and listed the practice as a ‘link scheme’ in Google’s Webmaster Tools Guidelines.

Should you still use press releases and paid articles? Absolutely! Press releases and advertorials can still be a great way to bring in traffic to your website and increase your brand awareness, and including a link to your site is crucial. However, it’s a good idea to add the rel=”nofollow” attribute to your link so that it does not pass PageRank; and therefore is not a threat.

3. Optimizing for keyword searches

The way that users search has evolved and so has the way that search engines comprehend queries. Users are more inclined to use conversational queries such as “Where is the best place to buy an iPhone?”. As a result, search engines like Google are accommodating those queries by delivering more relevant answers. In fact, Google’s newest algorithm, Hummingbird, is made for just that.

If users and search engines are evolving, that means SEO’s who don’t evolve with them will be left in the dust. Instead of focusing strictly on keyword strategies, SEO’s now need to pay close attention to keyword themes and the latent semantic technologies that search engines are now using.

4. Bundling your mobile and desktop SEO strategy

The agenda used to be optimizing sites for desktop users, while mobile users became an afterthought. This isn’t the case anymore. Mobile users have different needs and expect a better mobile experience. Desktop and mobile are two different strategies and both need to be taken into account when optimizing for usability. It’s also important that your mobile site doesn’t redirect users to different content or pages. Doing so will likely result in a penalty.

5. Writing content for the sole purpose of inflating the site

When a bigger site has more content, it has typically proven to be beneficial. However, more content does not necessarily equal quality content. Creating content solely for the purpose of maximizing your website usually comes at the expense of inadequate, irrelevant content; which doesn’t benefit anyone.

Content has become increasingly more important, not only to promote organic links but as a mechanism to connect with your audience. While content has always had a place in SEO, SEO’s are now responsible for taking on a more intricate role that includes writing appealing content for the target audience.

While SEO has seen changes throughout the year, the New Year offers an opportunity to implement some new strategies and extinguish old habits; and we are more than happy to see these strategies go.

There has been a whirlwind of changes in 2013. If you have any questions about these changes, would like advice on ethical, white hat strategies in 2014, or would like to pursue an SEO strategy with Titan Growth, feel free to contact us!

Submitted by Erica Machin, Titan Growth