It’s Ten O’Clock, Do You Know Who Is Managing Your Paid Search Campaign?

You’d be surprised at how many potential clients we meet with that have had an awful paid search experience for one major reason – they failed to manage their campaign and lost a ton of money and their faith in search engine marketing. That common occurrence is the focus for our most recent Free SEO Resource section.

I realize it might be hard to believe that companies will essentially make donations to Google by starting an Adwords campaign and then leave it running. But it happens all the time. Business owners get busy running their business and simply de-prioritize daily management of their campaigns. Worst of all, they forget to at least pause their campaign until they have more time.

In a lot of ways, this latest article is related to an earlier riff about why I don’t believe it’s a good idea for most business owners to run a company and manage a paid search campaign. While it’s certainly not impossible to do-it-yourself, it’s just not a great situation.

What’s Better, Traffic or Leads?

Check out our newest Free SEO Tip. This one is about the most common mistake we see when we meet with business owners who manage their own paid search campaigns. Inevitably, they are wasting dollars on keywords that are way too broad for their business. They get sucked in by the allure of increasing their traffic and forget that the whole point of paid search is to get business!

The secondary lesson here is that proper keyword research is critical to any successful paid search campaign.

As always, I look forward to any questions or feedback you have.

Monitor Ad Competiton in Other Cities with SearchMuffin

Business owners: if you geo-target your search ads, or if you’ve ever wondered about your paid search competition in a particular city, then you need to check out SearchMuffin.

SearchMuffin is a very cool and simple-to-use search engine that I’m betting you’ve never used before. To use it, all you need to do is enter a keyword and select a city in the US from a dropdown (there are more than 250 cities to choose from). In return you get a view of Google’s search results for the city you selected. In other words, you can see the ads exactly as they appear as if you were a user in that city.

This is extremely valuable for a couple of reasons. First, you can find out who your competition is in any city. It’s very possible you’ll find competitors you never knew existed. To me, that’s always a positive thing because, good or bad, we can always learn something from our competitors.

Second, you can piece together your competition’s strategy. Are their ads the same in every city, or do they change? Do they bid more aggressively in one city over another? Do they even bid in the same cities as you do?

One more tip: compare what you see in SearchMuffin with the stats in your analytics. Now that you know who is bidding against you in a city, keep an eye on how your conversion rate in that city compares to other cities in your campaign.

So, go try SearchMuffin and let me know what you think.

Need Links? Here’s a Way To Get Started.

Check out our latest article in out free SEO Resources“A Simplified Look at Acquiring Links”.

Like many of the articles we make available for business owners, this one is born out of a very common issue we see with business owners looking to get started with search engine optimization. Most of the business owners we talk to know they need to increase the number of quality inbound links. Many have been confused by some long-winded proposal from another SEO company about how exactly to get that done.

Bottom line: business owners want to at least know the basics before they make an investment (no matter the size) in improving their search engine positioning. Here’s hoping this article makes it a little easier to understand where to begin.