Wednesday, November 28, 2007

Driving eBay Sales with Google AdWords Tactics - Post #1

If you've ever tested Google AdWords campaigns to any extent, you've probably noticed some interesting things. One of them is that ad titles that include the keywords that were searched for typically outperform all other ads when it comes to CTR (click-through rates). WARNING: Remember, CTR is not your goal – conversion is. However, increasing CTR is one way to boost conversions… if the complete AdWords strategy and content approach is correct.

Ok – so let’s say you’d like to increase CTR. There’s a way to automatically insert the keywords searched for into your AdWords ad title. It’s generally referred to as Dynamic Keyword Insertion. The recipe follows.

First you need to group your AdWords keywords into appropriate ad groups. If you sell music CDs, for example, you might group by classical, pop, country, mod, punk and so forth. Once those groups are set up, you’re ready to design your Dynamic headline.

Use the right and left squiggly brackets on your keyboard {} to do this. It’s shift-bracket on most keyboards. The headline you type in for classical CDs should look like so:

{KeyWord: Classical CDs}

In this case, “Classical CDs” is considered alternate text. If one of your AdWords keywords is “Beethoven CDs”, the searcher will see the title “Beethoven CDs” come up as the title of your ad. Classical CDs is alternate text, because if the person searches for a classical CD phrase that’s longer than 25 characters (the Google limit), then they get the generic alternate text. For everything that’s under 25, however, they get titles that mimic exactly what they searched for.

WARNING #2: Don’t make your keywords that are inserted highly popular or “hot topics.” You can rack up a huge AdWords bill this way.

For some types of selling, this strategy isn't necessarily a good thing. If you have a long sales cycle that depends on some information exchange or a phone consultation, for example, your approach would be different. But for many B2C and B2B goods that are sold on eBay, it’s a great idea, because you don’t have to make unique titles and ads for every possible combination of keyword you’re bidding on.

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