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October 11, 2008

Holidays are now long time over and the rush in the office doesn't seem to slow at all. Times like this made me almost forget that I had started a blog earlier this year. In the mean time lots of things happend on the market. Insights for serch, Chrome, new AdWords rules, Yahoo refuses Microsoft, Jerry backed up by the shareholders, and not the least me finally buying a smart phone with unlimited web surf and mail subscription. No need to tell you that the addiction is on its way. And of course I had to try mail2blogger. That's pretty much all for now. Can't wait for tomorrow morning to see how this comes up on the big internet. Of course, I'm also going to check it from my mobile after posting it. Until the next time, click on!

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Faster Is Better : Landing Page Load Time Affects Your AdWords QS Now

June 19, 2008

AdWords Quality Score for the Page Load TimeThey announced it in March, now it’s on. Your landing page load time is now a factor in the AdWords Quality Score.

If you’re not abusing chained redirect URLs or don’t have a really slow server it shouldn’t affect your campaigns. On the other hand, if you have a really high speed page load, you might have the pleasant surprise of paying a little less for the clicks.

For now, only the HTML code downloading time is measured but Google intends to take into account all page elements soon. Another reason to choose carefully the landing pages or create dedicated ones.

Don’t Ask, Just Google It!

June 16, 2008

Yes, trying some world play humour here. Not sure I’m good at it though. ad on Google France
It has been a while now that I’ve kept noticing a certain advertiser popping up its ads on Google’s sponsored links results. Nothing strange until here, right? Only that I’m talking about
Of course that makes me curious if this is about getting traffic to their site and doing some branding job or if they have something else in mind.

Seeing the landing page, arbitrage is the first thing that comes to mind. But then again, how profitable could this be? As Google is the provider of these sponsored links. ad landing page in FranceEven though they have a “stay down” strategy, appearing only in low positions, thus paying not-so-expensive clicks, I still don’t believe they can use this as a business model.

On the other hand, with only 0.15%, ranked 6th in search volume share, last month, in France. If getting a better score is their goal, I’m asking my self if this is the best strategy. I mean, some “Not happy with this results? Try using instead!” should do a better job instead of the “Search X on Ask!” they keep using right now.

I’ll keep diggin’ as this has really stirred up my curiosity.

Oh, look, same thing on What’s with the shopping search engine text? ad on Google UK

Search Engine Market Shares in France

June 12, 2008

Xiti, the audience measurement leader in France, has just released May’s rankings in search engine market shares. Of course, there’s no surprise in it. Google is way far ahead of its main competitors, Yahoo and MSN.

Search Engine Ranks France May 2008

With 90.33% of the market share, Google maintains its monopoly of the web searches in France.
Yahoo!, on the other hand, lost 0.17 points compared to April and is only 0.45 away fro Microsoft’s Live Search.
That only leaves less than 5% to the really small players.

It is interesting to notice, though, that search market shares are not at all directly related to the unique visitor volume. According to Nielsen//NetRatings, in March 2008, Google sites had 21.5M unique visitors, 1.3M more than Microsoft’s 20.2M while Yahoo! ranks 6th with 10.8M.

Should I also tell you that Google is in fact the only search engine that has increased its market share in May (+0.32 points vs. April)…?

Random Thoughts on Google AdWords Content Campaigns

June 5, 2008

Well, the fact is that performances on the content network are inferior to those on the search network, especially for the ROI focused campaigns.

But, content campaigns might, and usually do, prove interesting when dealing with branding campaigns – driving qualified traffic to the site without conversion goals – or with prospect data base building actions. So this applies mostly to the B2C campaigns.

There are though rules to follow.

First that comes to mind is: never ever just activate the content network on your regular search campaigns. Building an efficient content campaign needs a separate strategy. As you are probably aware, the ads are not triggered by a single keyword in a content campaign. It’s the whole ad group that defines the theme. That is why using around 10 keywords per ad group is usually enough. No need to use very specific expressions. Just put together pertinent keywords defining a specific semantic universe. And then tie them up with some relevant ad text. And then create as many ad groups as you can, following the same concept.

For B2B campaigns I would advise focusing on the site targeting. AdWords has a tool that gives you a list of sites by analyzing your own/client’s, related to a keyword list that you provide or by letting you browse vertically through their proposed categories. You could identify some interesting niche sites this way. Using the classic content network as well but with a lower budget might provide you with some other sites to add to the site targeting campaign, just generate a placement report.

Nevertheless, in any case, make sure that the content campaigns are tracked correctly. When using a bid management tool this should not be a problem – usually they do all the job by themselves. But if you are only tracking the campaign with redirection URLs or with URL tags make sure you set them at the ad level and not at the keyword level as for the regular search campaigns.

Does this post make any sense?

adCenter Desktop Beta

June 4, 2008

I’ve just found out that Microsoft has finally announced the launching of its adCenter Desktop Beta.

The adCenter Desktop is supposed to be a sort of Adwords Editor for MSN.
As, compared to Google’s and Yahoo’s, the adCenter web based platform is really awful to use – yes, I know that they keep improving it –, the launching of the adCenter Desktop is great news for me.
I can only hope that it will be available for testing in France as well. Even though MSN is not a heavy traffic generator for the search campaigns – they have less than 3% of market share -, they do provide quality clicks (think beyond the click, remember?).

For more info, though not a lot of, just check the official site.

On my side, I’ll keep you updated if I get the chance to use it soon.

Click! …and beyond?

June 3, 2008

Yes, there is life beyond the click. I know it, you know it, they all know it. Or do they..?

It’s been now more than three years that the web is my work environment. I am still amazed, though, to see that sometimes, way too many times, I am seen more of a click hustler. The click is the new gold, the search marketing is the new El Dorado. Everybody wants clicks, cheap clicks, a lot of clicks. They want the most of the cheapest clicks they can get. It seems that watching your unique visitors curve grow day by day is THE way to success. I know it isn’t, you know it isn’t. How do you get them to realise it isn’t?

Well, there’s the easy way, where they take your word for it and let you do your job the way it needs to be done. And there’s, of course, the hard way. It comes a little later. When the joy of seeing the traffic stats go upper and upper starts going a way. Yes, traffic goes up, sales don’t. Didn’t see that coming, right?

I’m not saying that getting a lot of traffic isn’t good. It’s great. As long as it’s free. But, as soon as you start paying for it, think twice before buying. Every spent cent counts. This is when thinking beyond the click becomes inevitable, isn’t it?