Sometimes businesses or marketers dream of a “secret sauce” to doing SEO or PPC. Most of the time there is no “secret sauce.” There are tools and software, and they give an advantage, but usually it’s knowledge and work that really count. It’s not a cakewalk and it’s best learned when you’re passionate about what you do – (hat’s where we at OrangeSoda comes in).
Shoemoney posted a great article about optimizing your PPC campaigns by 16 year old super affilite Harrison Gevitrtz. He’s an affiliate marketer – so he makes money selling other people’s things for a commission. It also means no results, no paycheck. So I generally trust affiliates.
I call Harrison an affiliate baby – one of those kids who makes more than their parents (Harrison nets 6 figures). I’ve heard stories how parents call up Commission Junction asking why they’re sending their kid a check for thousands of dollars every month. It happens. It’s fun to see the play that Harrison brings to his work.
First, a great quote: “You’ll perhaps be amazed that there are no “secrets”. It’s not because I’m not telling you— rather, it’s a ton of hard work and a little bit of luck. It’s amazing how “lucky” you get when you work hard. Don’t believe the “get rich quick” scams that would have you believe a single piece of magic software or a single technique to find the right keywords is all you really need.”
I’m going to summarize the best points.
KEYWORDS – Quality over Quantity
- Don’t load up your account with a large list of keywords. You’ll get penalized for having low quality keywords in your ad groups.
- DO pick a few high quality terms per ad group. Group them by subject. Make sure they are relevant to the ads that will show for that group.
PPC ACCOUNT MONITORING AND OPTIMIZATION – Use your anayltics program and check bounce rate
- Test your keywords. Run your campaign for a day or two (less if there’s lots of volume) and then look at which terms are driving the most volume. Do this by sorting keywords by click volume – in descending order, using AdWords Editor.
- Find out what keywords are driving the most clicks and the best quality conversions. Look at your ad groups and see what is performing best. Use that to create variations of the successful campaigns. Try other match types. Increase bids, etc.
- Remove keywords that aren’t getting impressions or clicks. Also, cut ads that aren’t working.
- When testing campaigns, choose the campaign setting to have ads rotate equally– don’t let Google choose. “Your profit is how many clicks you get times how much you net per click– it’s an inverse relationship, unless you are bidding on tail terms or perhaps certain branded traffic.”
- Use your analytics data to get the bounce rate for your landing pages. If it’s over 60% cut it or optimize it.
- Look at your own web site to see what organic terms people are coming in on. Add them to your PPC campaign. Conversely, create pages for your best quality PPC terms on your web site.
He doesn’t use the Google AdWords API or Google Analytics. Here’s what he has to say about that:
“I rarely even use the Google Adwords API– but do in cases where there is enough volume to make it worth putting automated bid management in place. You do get dinged on using the API, for those who don’t know, so AdWords Editor is a more effective prototyping tool. Once you have something stable, then you can consider scaling it to the moon and using the API.”
I’ve heard conflicting feedback from another super affiliate who does use Google Analytics. Also, he is pushing offers for other companies as an affiliate. Thin margins. I’m not savvy to if there is a drawback to using Google AdWords API. This is something to explore – there are probably tradeoffs to each way. If you’re an individual running your own accounts, this may be a luxury.
He recommends Tim Armstrong’s book on landing page optimization (does he mean Tim Ash??) and promoting related products on your landing pages. And, after a lengthy post, he jokes that he should write a book. I think that’s a great idea – but hire a good editor!
Since this is already long, I’ll summarize what Harrison says NOT to do on your PPC campaign in the next post. Thanks Harrison for sharing your knowledge!