• http://www.alanmitchell.com.au alanmitchell

    Hi Brad,

    Excellent point about long-tail keywords and how it’s useful to group similar-themed keywords together for a more insightful measure of their performance. One practical method I often use for long-tail keywords is to look at ad group performance, especially where the search volume of the ad group’s individual keywords are low. Another useful method is to simply extend the date range you use for analysis – perhaps look at a year’s worth of data or even longer.

    However, I won’t tend to delete long-tails unless I am very confident they are not working. I recently did some research on long-tail keywords and found that searches of 5 words or more (what I described as ‘long-tails’) accounted for 21% of clicks but delivered 40.5% of conversions, most at a considerably lower cost per conversion http://www.alanmitchell.com.au/techniques/benefits-of-long-tail-keywords/ ). Long-tails can add a huge amount of value to a paid search campaign, so I would tend to be careful in pausing or deleting them unless it’s clear they are vastly under-perfoming.

    Couldn’t agree more about the value of tracking. Lack of outcome-orientated data, especially call data as you point out, is one of those things that can really hold a PPC campaign back, so it’s essential to invest time and effort to ensure effective and comprehensive tracking is set up as soon as practical.