Three Tools to Give You a Competitive Advantage in Your PPC Campaigns

If your PPC campaign isn’t moving forward, it’s moving backward. There’s always room to improve your campaign, and one of the easiest ways you can do so is by analyzing what your competitors are doing—and using that information to your advantage. Before you start, you should assess your current online advertising if you haven’t already done so. Dig through your own data and find out what is working and what isn’t, look for places to cut spending as well as opportunities for growth.

Assess your budgets and review cost-per-clicks, click-through-rates, search traffic and overall traffic generated from online advertising. Once you’ve reviewed your current strategy you can unleash your inner James Bond. And like any decent Bond film, yours should start by pulling together the tools for the job—whether that means an exploding pen or an Audience Insights Report. Here are three tools to get you started in your competitive analysis. Continue reading “Three Tools to Give You a Competitive Advantage in Your PPC Campaigns”

How Do I Get A Higher Quality Score in AdWords?

So you just launched an AdWords campaign and you’re probably wondering how to start off on the right foot with a high-quality score. Or perhaps you’ve been advertising on AdWords for years, and you are starting to see your quality score drop. Whatever the case may be, you need to raise your quality score to increase leads and decrease costs. On one hand, you could read a book on the complex strategies and technical aspects of increasing your quality score. However, what I have learned is, the more complicated you make it, the more confused you will be. The best method I can give to achieve a higher quality score is to make your entire process of thinking as simple as possible. Here are five simple pointers you can use today to help increase your quality score.   Continue reading “How Do I Get A Higher Quality Score in AdWords?”

What Is The Most Expensive Keyword To Bid On?

Think you’re getting bamboozled by the high cost per click you’re paying? It might just be your industry and the keywords you’re bidding on. We’ve found that the price of the keyword really depends on the industry you’re bidding on, and how competitive that industry is. There are also a number of other factors tied in, such as the location you are targeting and the volume of the search terms related to your keywords. However, the most important factor in the bid price on a keyword is the lifetime value of a customer in that industry. What is the most expensive keyword to bid on? Continue reading “What Is The Most Expensive Keyword To Bid On?”

The Perfect Pairing: How to Pair Wisconsin’s Beers and Cheeses

Wine and cheese have long monopolized the market on alcoholic beverage and dairy product pairings, and culinary enthusiasts everywhere enjoy hosting a wine and cheese pairing party to show how the two delicacies can play off each other. Beer, meanwhile, has been relegated to being partnered with wings, pizza, and burgers- all delicious in their own right, but not quite the right foods when you’re trying to serve light hors-d’oeuvres and finger food.

However, at Digital Third Coast, we don’t believe it’s a coincidence that our neighbor state of Wisconsin is the nation’s leading producer of some of the most amazing local brews and cheeses that the country has ever seen. In fact, we take it as a sign that beer and cheese are a match made in heaven (or a match made in Milwaukee, as the case may be).

To that end, we’ve created a guide pairing the best of Wisconsin’s local beers and cheeses for you- plus a few tips on how to pair beer and cheese on your own.

Wisconsin beer and cheese pairings infographic.

Choose Cheese, Then Beer

Craft beer is much more versatile than cheese, so it makes more sense to choose one or two cheeses first. From there, pick a variety of craft beer styles to enjoy alongside the cheeses.

Purchase Cheese the Day Of

Like so many other wonderful things in this world, cheese tastes best when it’s served fresh. Buy your cheese on the day of the tasting, or the day before at the earliest.

Pair by Intensity

Match the flavor profiles of the beer and cheese. For example, a strong beer (for example, an imperial stout like “Carnal Knowledge in the Wood”) will pair well with a cheddar aged two or more years, such as the one from Land O’Lakes in Weyauwega, Wisconsin. Meanwhile, a goat milk cheese (such as the one produced at LaClare Farms in Malone, Wisconsin) complements a fruit-flavored lambic beer, like the Thumbprint Cran-Bic from New Glarus Brewing Company.

Taste from Lightest to Strongest

You’ll want to gradually work your way up the intensity scale by starting with the lightest cheese and lowest ABV beer, eventually moving on to heavier, more complex pairings.

Serve at the Right Temperature

We’re trained to think that the best temperature for a beer is ice-cold, but in fact, most beer should be served between 40-60 degrees, depending on the type of beer. By serving beer at the appropriate temperature, you highlight its flavor profile. However, make sure to serve cheese only at room temperature.

Don’t Pre-Cut the Cheese

Cutting the cheese before you serve it will cause it to dry out, and the cheese will lose its freshness. Let cutting the cheese be the last thing you do before serving. Also, use different knives for each cheese to avoid mixing any flavors.

No matter where your beer and cheese are from, pairing the two properly is a surefire way to give your friends and family one Gouda time. Sorry, just had to get one cheesy joke in.

Paid Search Is Still Important Alongside Successful SEO

A while back we discussed Google’s study of the additional visits that can be gained from paid search. In short, by analyzing the accounts of a number of advertisers that paused their paid search campaigns, Google was able to determine the number of visits that were the sole result of paid search. While the original study provided insight into the amount of lift that paid search can provide to traffic levels, it did not address lingering questions concerning the amount of extra traffic gained when a site already ranks organically on the first page of versus when a site does not rank on the first page.

Recently researchers at Google returned to the study to answer this very question. This time they performed a meta-analysis of 390 advertiser accounts in an effort to examine the percentage of additional paid search visits when compared to organic search results that appeared throughout various positions on the page. Logic dictates that when your ad appears in search results pages that do not contain an organic listing for your site, 100 percent of the traffic that you receive would not have been attained without paid search advertising.  Researchers first examined how often organic results appeared alongside an advertisement and found that, on average, 81 percent of the time an organic result does not appear alongside an ad. Additionally, researchers found that 66 percent of clicks from paid search did not have an organic result alongside it.

Successful SEO + Well Managed PPC = Even More Traffic

Researchers then further analyzed how many clicks would have been gained when an ad appeared alongside an organic search result on the first page and came up with some surprising findings.

How paid ads help improve your SEO

When an organic result appeared in positions 5 or higher, 96 percent of ad clicks would not have been gained without paid search advertising. For positions 2 through 4 the additional traffic was 82 percent. Perhaps the most interesting finding was that even when an advertiser ranked number 1 organically, 50 percent of paid search clicks would not have been gained without paid search advertising.

How Does This Impact Your Business?

Although your website may rank competitively in natural search, there is still additional traffic that can be gained by engaging in paid search. The internet is an extremely competitive place and while a number 1 organic ranking will certainly deliver a majority of clicks, it does not necessarily guarantee traffic from all searchers.  In order to gain full exposure to potential customers and clients, it is essential to take part in all applicable forms of internet marketing, including paid search. Read the full findings and research paper at Google’s Research Center.