E-Power Marketing - Online Marketing Agency - Oshkosh, Wisconsin Contact Us
Stay up-to-date with the continuing sagas and dilemmas involved in the online marketing industry.
Thursday, January 28, 2010

       

Google Analytics is a valuable tool that helps you better understand your Web site and the behavior of the people who visit it. Learn more about how Google Analytics can help you on our What Can Google Analytics do for me page. Understanding how your users interact with your Web site and how your Web site is performing is crucial to your online success. After all, how can you improve your Web site without knowing what is and isn't working for you? Google Analytics allows you to analyze your visitors' behavior and your Web site so that you can determine how to improve your online presence. Google Analytics helps you make better decisions regarding your Web site, and it gives you the tools to improve your site for increased success.

"The Basics of Google Analytics" White Paper was written to give new users an idea of how to install and use Google Analytics in a basic and easy to follow format. The paper details installation procedures beginning with account set up. "The Basics of Google Analytics" White Paper from E-Power Marketing should teach you all you need to know about getting a basic Google Analytics program up and running. The White Paper also explains how to work with the Google Analytics interface and how to gain a better understanding of the data that you gather from Google Analytics. Check out the White Paper now and learn how to get your Google Analytics program up and running!

Let E-Power Marketing provide you with Google Analytics Implementation and Support to install and start utilizing Google Analytics to improve your Web site performance.

Labels:

       

As the Web develops there have been noticeable changes in how Search Engine results are displayed. Google has added more and more categories of search results, pushing the ever important organic search positions all over the page. Organic search positions are still important. Appearing as the first organic position for a search is still valuable for brands. Though still important, organic search results are being pushed around on the search engines.

It is important to see how the landscape of Search Engine Results has changed. You may hold a number 3 search position for an important keyword, which used to mean great exposure, but what does that really mean anymore? Here is a screen shot from Google, with the different search results labeled.



These aren't the only listings that can pop up and interfere with organic search positions. Google also inputs Google Local listings both at the top of the page, or sometimes within the organic results. Google has also been including real time news results, streaming information from other news sources and Twitter. Examples of these services can be seen below.




As you can see, the first organic search listing doesn't fully appear "above the fold" in this case. So what are these new sections of results, and how can you make the most of these sections for your Web site?

  • Extended Sponsored Product Listings - These listings are new on Google. They are an extended sponsored listing, companies pay to appear in this section, as in normal PPC advertising listings, but have the opportunity to add information, including photos, individual product listings and more detailed information.

  • Sponsored Listings - These are ads that have been purchased by companies. These are not new, and they are straightforward. For more information on PPC advertising, please read our PPC Blog posts. You can also receive a free PPC analysis from E-Power Marketing for more information on how to better utilize your PPC advertising budgets.

  • News Stories - Google's News service gathers news headlines from around the world and has created a search engine of many of the world's news sources. At times, they produce links to news stories related to searched key phrases, as can be seen in the above image. Companies are able to submit their Blogs or news feeds to this service to be reviewed by Google.

  • Shopping Listings - Google has developed the Google Merchant Center. Companies are able to submit their products through this service, and Google offers these results in the Shopping Listing section of Search Engine Results. For more search visibility within these listings, optimized product descriptions should be submitted to Google through the Merchant Center.

  • Local Listings - Google offers a local service that lets users find local businesses, view maps and get driving directions to those locations through Google Maps. The Google Local Business Center allows businesses to create a free business listing where you can update your business' information regularly. When searches are made, Google can include Local Listings at the top of search results, or within the organic listings.

  • Video Listings - Google can add video listings to search engine results as well. These videos are relevant to the search, and are pulled from top online video hosting providers, such as YouTube and Vimeo, as well as from top news sources such as ABC and CNN.

Google isn't the only search engine to diversify their listings. Below, you can see how Yahoo and Bing are also offering more diversity in their search results.




Search Engines are changing the way they present information to Internet users. There are more opportunities than ever to gain exposure and search visibility on the first pages of search engines. As things are changing, it is important for Web site owners to understand how things are changing, and what they can do to adapt.

Labels:

Monday, January 11, 2010

       

A call-to-action is something we are all familiar with and see in almost every form of advertising. But when it comes to writing copy for PPC ads, it's not used nearly as much. The value of including a call-to-action is in communicating exactly what you want users to do when they get to your landing page, thus improving the chances of conversions, increasing ROI and meeting your campaign goals.

This is much easier said than done since Google limits you to 25 characters in the ad headline and 70 characters for the body (35 per line). Even good copywriters struggle to fit everything they want to say into these restraints, so deciding to replace parts of a working ad with a generic call-to-action takes some finessing.

The idea of eating up 19 characters for the phrase "Sign Up Now to Save" could be a tough one to agree with when additional, informative text about the product or service could fill that space. But isn't that what you created the landing page for? To be that final influence for the visitor, complete with all the information needed? Relying on your optimized landing page and using the call-to-action is advantageous in most situations because it tells the visitor exactly what action is needed and guides them to the next step of the buying process.

When writing a call-to-action, you should aim for the visitor to complete those actions you are measuring as conversions. This could include a final sale, newsletter sign-up, e-mail request or a download. For example, a call-to-action that reads "Contact Us Today" should not be used when watching the demo on the landing page is counted as a conversion. "Watch a Demo Now" or "See How it Works" would be more suitable.

A call-to-action is not always appropriate or necessary, but it does help motivate visitors to move beyond the ad and take the suggested action, which will increase your campaign ROI. Try split-testing different ad copy, some with call-to-actions and some without, and see what appeals to your audience most and then adapt accordingly.

Labels:

Friday, January 8, 2010

       

When was the last time you, your SEM team, or your "SEO-Friendly" Web developer did the following things? Chances are, its been awhile. These are 10 tasks that should be on your radar at all times, and done regularly to improve your Web site's functionality and search visibility.

  1. Check the load speed of each page on your Web site. When a page takes longer than 10 seconds to load, you've got some issues. Google Webmaster Tools has added a Page Speed section to their program. Login to your account and check out how your Web site is loading.

  2. Check your site for broken links. Broken links can wreak havoc on a Web site. Use a tool like Xenu to discover any broken links on your Web site, and fix them immediately.

  3. Analyze your Google Webmaster Tools account. Checking your account regularly will ensure you're getting the most from this tool. Google Webmaster Tools and the data it provides can aid in improving your Web site, but only if you look at the information regularly.

  4. Examine your Sitemap. As your Web site changes, your Sitemap page needs to change as well. Keep your Sitemap up to date with the most current listing of your Web pages. Don't forget about your XML Sitemap either!

  5. Edit your Web site's content or Meta Tags. Continually refreshing the content on your Web site will make a difference. Stagnant content won't do you any good on search engines. From Title tags to Meta Descriptions, is your Meta Data still accurately describing each of your Web pages? Does each page have specific Meta Data? Are you within the Search Engine's character recommendations or guidelines?

  6. Do you learn anything from your Google Analytics account? You can improve your Web site's productivity and functionality by utilizing your Google Analytics account properly. Not sure how to accurately interpret or utilize the data? Ask for help! It's that important.

  7. Make sure your contact information is correct and up to date. Employees come and go, offices move, phone numbers change. Double check that your contact information is accurately presented (and easy to find) on your Web site!

  8. Do keyword research to make sure you're still targeting the most appropriate and searched words on your Web site. People's search habits change, make sure you're using the correct keywords in your content!

  9. Claim, update, or create your Local Search Marketing listing. Not only will you be creating quality links to your Web site, you'll also be making your brand more accessible to people in your area. You should also verify your information on the major search engines' local search tools. Local search is becoming more and more important as the Mobile Web takes off.

  10. Do you really understand your Search Engine Marketing report? You should understand your SEM campaign, and where your budget is going. If you have questions about how your money is being spent, ask your SEM team.

Labels:

Wednesday, January 6, 2010

       

Do you ever look at your Google Analytics data and wonder what happened two weeks ago that caused your traffic to spike or drop? Maybe a new campaign was launched or a technical issue was corrected on the site. Unless you wrote it down or have notes about what you did two weeks ago you may have a hard time remembering what happened that day. If you did write it down you may have a problem sharing that information with everyone who has access to your Google Analytics profile because of the where you keep the notes. This causes an issue keeping all of your departments and partners in the loop with developments on your site, updates with your PPC campaigns, and online marketing program.

Google Analytics has taken care of this problem by adding Annotations to their growing list of features. You can now add Annotations to specific dates in your Google Analytics profiles to mark any significant changes or developments. Now, when you want to launch a new campaign or your site goes under construction you can annotate those days in your Analytics account. This is a very useful and simple tool that will allow better communication among your Google Analytics account users. If your IT department or your SEO firm makes a change to your site, they can now annotate the date the changes or events occurred so you can see exactly when something happened and who was responsible for the changes as long as they have access to the profiles in question. Since Annotations are automatically associated with the login responsible for the Annotation, it is easy to see who created the Annotation and when.

Annotations can be made public or private. Use public Annotations to note events and changes that affect multiple departments or use private Annotations to put a note in about when a report was run. Public Annotations can be seen by anyone who has access to the profile.

Google Analytics Annotations are also a great way to explain automatic and custom alerts from your Google Analytics Intelligence. Annotations can be used to explain a specific alert so everyone who has access to the profile can see why a significant change occurred.

Below is a video from the Google Analytics Blog on Annotations:



Using Annotations is a great way to make communication easier across departments and other users of your Google Analytics accounts. It is also a great way to save time and better understand changes that occur with your Google Analytics data.

Labels:

       

As your buyers shift to the Internet, you will find that your online marketing budget can outperform the traditional advertising you had been buying. Not only can online marketing generate more sales than traditional advertising, it also allows you to use tools that will improve your Return on Investment on an ongoing basis.

Web Analytics measures Web site traffic and visitor activity. Analytics identifies from which search engine or Web site a buyer or lead came from, the search words used by the buyer to find your Web site, and the Web page that motivated the buyer to take action. You can see how many pages visitors are viewing and how long they stay on your site. These are important metrics for understanding how well your site is engaging visitors.

Analytics identifies the online marketing activities that are generating the best Return on Investment. You will know which money-making efforts to focus on, while scaling back or eliminating efforts that do not yield sales or leads.

Google offers an excellent Web Analytics system that is free of charge. Google Analytics provides comprehensive statistics giving you a window into the behavior of your visitors. It provides information to guide your efforts to boost your Web site's functionality, lead generation and sales conversions.

How can Analytics improve your Web sales? You can track where your sales came from for a better understanding of ROI. Use it to identify when and what page people leave your site from. What can you do to keep them longer? Is navigation guiding visitors to take the actions you want? Where in the sales process are potential buyers leaving, and what can be done to change this?

Take advantage of Web Analytics to measure and improve your Web site's results. You will be rewarded with more return from your marketing budget.

Labels: ,