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420 Dilemma? Marijuana Emerges In Local Search

marijuana-map-600 Today marks the first time that April 20th -- known amongst pot smokers as "420" and frequently celebrated with smoking parties -- is a legally observable event in the United States (in some places, at least, since the states of Washington and Colorado have legalized recreational use of the drug for adults). So, what does this mean for local businesses and marketers? In 2010, I conducted a limited audit to see if 420 party locations, as well as marijuana dispensaries, appeared in Google Maps. I found little more than a user-generated map back then -- but fast-forward to 2014, and we be [...]


Study: Search Campaigns Earn Double Conversion & Revenue Rates When Integrated With Social

Marin Software logo According to a new study from Marin Software, advertisers that leveraged integrated search and social ad campaigns experienced twice as many conversions, and doubled their revenue per click rates. Using data from its Global Online Advertising Index, Marin evaluated the performance of paid search campaigns integrated along with social advertising campaigns. The study found users who clicked on both search and social ads had approximately two times greater conversion rate and spent twice as much than users who only clicked on a search ad. Those results more than quadrupled when compared to [...]


2014 US Search Awards Now Accepting Entries

US Search Awards 2014 The US Search Awards are now accepting entries for this year's awards ceremony scheduled on October 8 in conjunction with Pubcon in Las Vegas. Recognizing US based organizations, agencies and individuals doing search and digital marketing, this is the second annual US Search Awards ceremony. The event will include 20 different award categories, ranging from "Best Use of Search" to "Best Integrated Campaign" and "Search Personality of the Year." US Search Awards claims this year's event will be: The biggest celebration of search, PPC and digital marketing in the USA, attracting hundreds [...]


Paid Search Spend Rises 8 Percent In Q1, Mobile Shows Signs Of Maturing [Report]

US Search Q1 2014 By Vertical IgnitionOne In the first quarter this year, U.S. search advertising spend rose 8 percent when compared both quarter-over-quarter (QoQ) and year-over-year (YoY) according to IgnitionOne's latest report which looks at the campaigns run through its digital marketing platform. In Q1 2014, paid search clicks increased 5 percent and click-through-rates (CTR) were up 23 percent YoY while impressions fell again, by 15 percent. IgnitionOne cautions that the drop in impressions does not imply that search queries are down but that the decrease is due to the rise in mobile searches where there is less real estate [...]


Mobile To Drive 50 Percent Of Google Paid Search Clicks By End Of 2015 [Study]

Mobile Devices Mobile paid search saw rapid growth last year, owing to both the rise in smartphone and tablet use as well as to the introduction of enhanced campaigns, which largely bakes mobile targeting into advertisers' campaigns. In 2013, 19 percent of Google’s ad revenue came from mobile search ads, and it's expected to rise to 30 percent over the next 3 years, according to eMarketer. Taking a deeper look at its own data on mobile ad performance for Google, Marin Software released its 2014 annual mobile search advertising report today. As Marin EVP Wister Walcott highlighted in his talk at Marke [...]


Which Is The Most “Generous” Search Engine To Local Businesses?

local-search-featured Earlier this month, one of our customers asked an interesting question in a training workshop. They wanted to know which search engine displayed the most local results for different types of search terms. Google gets the lion's share of focus in the SEO world, particularly in Local. They also have the most developed local search product (vs. Bing and Yahoo), but does this mean that they present more local results to searchers? We discussed our own assumptions on this matter and did some digging online but couldn't find any research that compared the display of results on Google vs. Bing vs. [...]


If Online Ad Targeting Works, Does More Targeting Work Better?

target roi A former colleague at Forrester Research recently published a study that described his view of the future of online marketing. The study is available to Forrester clients only, but the crux of the argument is laid out in a blog post: Why Google - Not Facebook - Will Build The Database Of Affinity. The author, Nate Elliot, describes large media companies building a "database of affinity," which he described thusly: Recently we described an idea called the database of affinity: A catalogue of people's tastes and preferences collected by observing their social behaviors on sites like Face [...]


AdWords Mobile App Download Campaigns Get Deeper Reporting In Google Analytics

adwords mobile app download ad This week, Google added new reporting available for mobile app campaigns in Google Analytics. By linking AdWords and Google Analytics accounts and enabling auto-tagging, mobile app advertisers will be able to access more detailed performance reports about their campaigns in Google Analytics. New reports on mobile app campaign performance include day parts, destination URLs and keyword positions. They'll be found in Google Analytics under the Acquisition menu for Google Analytics App Views over the next few days. The reporting applies to both display and search campaigns. Advertisers wil [...]


10 Local Marketing Myths Hamstringing Your Business

Local Online Marketing Myths - Local SEO Myths As an internet marketer, I frequently encounter local business owners (and large chain store companies with many local outlets) that haven't had time to really understand online marketing. Many of them have latched onto some myth that's completely false -- and which can keep their businesses from soaring as high as they otherwise might. It's not surprising that local business operators can lack knowledge about online marketing, or that they can get exposed to misapprehensions about how local marketing should be conducted. Google's CEO has been quoted as saying that the world is now generati [...]


Google Shopping Campaigns Are Now Live — How To Get Started

google-shopping-products-featured Yesterday morning, Google announced the Google Shopping campaign program is now available to all online merchants. Google Shopping campaigns, which have been in beta since October, are a new version of PLAs which change how ads are created. They make creating PLAs more transparent within AdWords and give advertisers more control, allowing them to view more product information with less involvement with the data feed and an intuitive product group break-out structure.  Google Shopping Campaigns 101 Here are three of the major elements of Google Shopping campaigns: Layering Structur [...]


Why Duplicate Business Listings Are Like The Walking Dead

zombies-danger-risk-600 In the Local SEO biz, we spend a lot of time fixing duplicate business listings. Duplicate records of your business appearing throughout the Local Search ecosystem can cause a variety of issues like messing with your Google Local rankings, causing you to lose business, and may even make you feel like you're experiencing a zombie apocalypse. The problem is no matter what we do, dupes often come back from the dead to haunt us. Why is that? TL;DR Warning: Time to eat your local data vegetables. [caption id="attachment_184636" align="alignleft" width="300"] Image Courtesy of the Ansel Sho [...]


Delivering On Search: Behind The Scenes With An Ad Agency SEO Manager

Hillary Glaser headshot2 Today's full service ad agency services go far beyond building out creative and determining media placement. As Lowe Campbell Ewald's SEO manager, Hillary Glaser is responsible for managing client search efforts, as well as training agency staff and educating clients on the realities of SEO. At the beginning of every project, Glaser said she meets with other internal team members to get a better grasp of their client's objectives: The first thing we do is talk it out – we start brainstorming and collaborating with the analytics teams, account people, and other digital and traditional [...]


Why “Big Data” Won’t Win You The Battle For Online Revenue

Marin Software Revenue Connect With so much attention currently being focused on big data, advertisers are beginning to lose sight of one crucial truth: big data is worthless if it's not the right data. So what is the right data? We all know that the digital advertising landscape has dramatically matured over the past decade, and businesses are now wise to invest in technology that enables marketing sophistication. But, the right data is what makes that marketing sophistication meaningful. It's what marketers use to power more complex, strategic and smarter marketing decisions. It's the data that matters most to your [...]


5 Uncommon PPC Strategies For the Local Business’ Toolkit

Screen Shot 2014-02-07 at 9.21.38 AM Any search on PPC strategies will yield a tremendous amount of resources that are focused on generalized positive and negative PPC strategies for local businesses, e.g., keyword management, bid management, negative keywords, landing page optimization. What is often not as readily available is information on uncommon and highly effective PPC tactics that squarely benefit local search marketers by giving them a competitive advantage in bringing in leads. The following tactics should be a part of the local business marketer's toolkit and will return enormous rewards. Tactic 1: Attributio [...]


6 Local Tips For Small Business SEO Success

SEL - Billys Bakery Graphic We all know that a key component of any small business' marketing strategy is to effectively position its brand in search engine results. But is it possible to dominate search results with content you control -- or at least content you've influenced? The answer is yes. There are simple and effective ways to boost visibility for your business in search results, while simultaneously improving related marketing efforts in social media, ratings and reviews, and media outreach. Take a look at my six tips for local SEO success, along with action items for each in order to successfully implemen [...]


10 Pro Online Reputation Management Tips For Local Businesses

Online Local Reputation Management Online marketing experts have spent a lot of time providing advice on managing online ratings and reviews for local businesses -- but reputation can have much broader impact than your reviews in Yelp and Google. There's hardly a business out there that doesn't have an occasional issue arise with a customer. Ideally, you can resolve things before it reaches a point where a customer believes they can only get satisfaction through a public forum or feels they ought to warn people about your business. The internet has made it so the barriers between one customer and another are far reduced -- w [...]


There’s No SEO Without Mobile SEO

Mobile-share-of-organic-search-RKG-2013-600x391 It's 2014, which means we are officially one year away from the year that Kelsey Group predicted mobile search will eclipse desktop search. Are you making your mobile resolutions to ensure you're ready for when that time comes? [caption id="attachment_70213" align="alignright" width="360"] Mobile share of overall search traffic was nearly one third in Q3 of last year according to RKG.[/caption] I'd like to start the new year with a short reflection of how far mobile SEO as a discipline has come in less than five years. When I started researching mobile SEO back in 2005, Motorola Razr [...]


Secrets Of Successful Enterprise SEO Part 2: Building A Winning Team

winning-race-featured In the first part of this series, I outlined a powerful method used by successful enterprise SEOs to tackle the challenge of enterprise SEO. While operational planning is critical to get in place, the best laid plans are useless unless you can execute on them. In this second part, I would like to share another secret of highly effective enterprise SEOs that I've learned over the years while working with many of the largest and most successful enterprises in the world: their unique perspective on developing a "winning team." Surprise -- it's not about hiring the best SEO talent out there to [...]


For SMBs, The Time Is Now To Embrace Search Advertising

paid-search-ppc-featured As a recently as a few years ago, the owner of a small or local business could legitimately ask, "Why should I buy search ads?" After all, he or she first faced the hassle of setting up an ad campaign in a relatively foreign platform -- then, assuming they got ads served, maybe people clicked. But at the cost, what benefit was the advertiser really receiving? If you are not an online business, how do you translate a click into something an SMB can understand -- and place value on? It was simply impossible to know. And who can blame them? According to our research, proving ROI is the top nee [...]


The B2B Marketer’s Guide to Baidu SEO

Chinese search engine market share diagram Baidu is the most popular search engine in China, which makes it a very powerful channel for B2B marketers in the global market. As of November 2013, Baidu held 63.55% of the search engine market share in China. The other two big players in the market are 360 with 21.84% of the market and Sogou at 10.53%. For any B2B company with a Chinese website, optimizing for Baidu is a necessity. While it's important to keep 360 and Sogou in mind as well, both are very new search engines that only recently emerged in the China market, so there's not much documentation out yet on SEO guidelines. [captio [...]


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