Siddharth Shah

Siddharth Shah

Siddharth Shah is head of web analytics, digital strategy and insights at Adobe. He leads a global team that manages the performance of over $2 BN dollars of ad spend on search, social and display media at Adobe.


Attribution: Busting The Myths

As one of the hottest topics in marketing, attribution is often presented as a panacea for marketers’ dilemmas, allowing you to understand how different advertisements in a purchase funnel work together. The typical description first shows how conversions attributable to various channels change when going from last-click to even-distribution or U-distribution (pick your favorite open-shaped […]


Does Weather Affect Site Traffic & SEM Performance?

Omni-channel retail marketers with online sites and offline stores have often wondered about the effect that weather might have on their site traffic (which in turn would affect their paid search bidding strategies). There appear to be three competing hypotheses about weather affecting site traffic: Hypothesis #1: Site traffic is negatively correlated with weather quality […]

Google Shopping

Why Attribution Really Matters For Product Listing Ads

With the holiday shopping season in full steam, advertisers are continuing to invest significantly in Google Shopping via Product Listing Ad (PLA) campaigns. Given the different format of these ads, one might expect users to interact differently than regular search ads. Perhaps people interact with them earlier in the sales funnel because these ads have […]


3 Mobile Trends Every Search Marketer Must Know

When I last blogged about mobile trends in 2011, I had predicted that mobile, i.e., smartphone + tablet traffic would be 10% of all paid search traffic by the end of 2011. I had also predicted that mobile traffic would be between 16-22% of all traffic. It turns out, at least for a few categories, […]


How To Effectively Use Attribution With Complex Campaigns

As marketers, we think that attribution is important. However, despite all the talk in white papers, blogs, etc., little has been discussed about its effective use. For instance: is attribution always useful, what are the common attribution techniques, which is the best attribution model, what improvements in efficiency can one expect from the right attribution […]


A 3 Step Model For High Seasonality Forecasting

In many verticals, much of the year’s business gets done during a short period. For instance, tax software is mostly sold at the end of January in the US when the W2 forms are mailed and right before the last day of submission in mid April. This is seen clearly in the Google Trends chart […]


Best Practices To Get The Most Out Of Google Shopping

As you should know by now, Google recently announced that it was combining its free Google Product Search listings and Product Listing Ads (PLA) to Google Shopping, where all listings would be shown in an auction based process akin to PPC. This is a significant change for retailers as it means that a significant percent […]


Singular vs. Plural: What Search Queries Can Tell You About Your Customers

“Remember: Y’all is singular. All y’all is plural. All y’all’s is plural possessive.” – Kinky Friedman In display or social advertising, the marketer can reach customers with different offers  based on demographics or behavioral signals. This is not so in search where one only has the query searched as the fundamental mode of segmentation. This […]


Sometimes You Just Need To Go With Your Gut In Data Analysis

It is difficult to understand why statisticians commonly limit their inquiries to Averages, and do not revel in more comprehensive views. Their souls seem as dull to the charm of variety as that of the native of one of our flat English counties, whose retrospect of Switzerland was that, if its mountains could be thrown […]


Understanding The Limits Of Attribution

While there is much discussion about attribution and its benefits, marketers seldom discuss what it can’t do. Unfortunately, this creates a perception with many marketers that attribution will solve all their multimedia problems and that their media mix problems will go away. While I believe that the evolution of attribution and media mix modeling technology […]


Why Patience Is A Virtue With The Long Tail

A recent article by fellow Search Engine Land contributor Matt Van Wagner on long-tail keyword management  – as well as some recent experiences with several large-scale advertisers, inspired me to write this article on quantitative long-tail management. Too often, I have seen cases where marketers apply incorrect reactive rules on the long tail and kill it in […]


Setting Campaign Budgets: Maximizing ROI While Controlling The Risk

Campaign budgets enable advertisers control over campaign-level spend on search engines. Once the campaign spend approaches the set budget, ads show up with lesser frequency, and ultimately ads do not compete in the auctions. However, this is not the best way to control your budget for two reasons: (1) If you have hit your campaign […]

Analytics & conversion

Making Sense Of Multi-Click Data

Click path reports can be very useful tools in understanding how customers behave. For instance, they can tell you how much time consumers spend research before they buy a product. They can also tell you if there are certain keywords that help other keywords convert, e.g. assisting keywords. Finally, when coupled with attribution, they can […]

Analytics & conversion

Size Does Matter: How, Where & Why People Buy

In my last post, I had discussed how big retailers with thousands of SKUs are faced with difficult performance management questions relating to their SEM campaigns. I had also analyzed transaction data and shown how small and big ticket items convert differently. Finally, I had also suggested management approaches for effective campaign management of these […]

Analytics & conversion

Size Does Matter: How Retailers Should Manage Campaigns For Big & Small Ticket Items

Big retailers with a substantial store presence most often have a big online presence with thousands of SKUs. Apart from drawing consumers who might solely look online to buy products, they also help consumers in the earlier research phase of the buying cycle. Sometimes, the merchant will complete a transaction online that might have otherwise […]

Analytics & conversion

Tips For Managing Ad Fatigue On Facebook

On the face of it, Facebook marketplace and search advertising are similar. In both platforms, the advertiser places a bids for an ad, competes against other advertisers at the impression level and then pays the platform a CPC for every click. These similarities help search marketers who are increasingly being asked to manage Facebook campaigns. […]

Analytics & conversion

How To Make Your Statistics Skimpy Yet Meaningful

“Statistics are like a bikini – what is revealed is interesting but what is hidden is crucial. ” – Aaron Levenstein, Associate Prof. emeritus of Business, Baruch College. Statistics tell us about general trends and properties about our data but often they hide information that would give key insights. The goal of every analyst then is […]

Analytics & conversion

Applying Customer Life time Value To Paid Search

Online marketers have realized that traditional metrics such as sales, brand wareness, attitudes etc., are not enough to show return on investment. In fact, some academic studies have shown that marketing actions that improve short term sales may actually harm long term profitability of a brand. Further, with improvements in data mining and warehousing, marketers […]

Analytics & conversion

Is Your Digital Marketing Team Poised For Success?

In the last year or so, heads of marketing of several large companies have told me that they are interested in cross channel optimization and want the right media mix recommendation across all their channels, both online and offline. However, as I spoke to many digital marketing teams, I realized that they were not set […]

Analytics & conversion

My Data Have Feelings

As search marketers, we are often asked to look at multi-dimensional data. This is often cumbersome, boring and overwhelming to go through. Take a look at this example from a campaign that’s running in multiple cities in the US:   The CPA in Boston is high and it appears to be due to the conversion […]

Analytics & conversion

Broad Vs. Exact Match Types: The Hard Data

Search managers are often asked the question if they are over- or under-exposed on broad and exact matches. I have heard several heated discussions debating this issue. Since this is an issue that touches many a nerve, I decided to take a dispassionate data driven look at the numbers. Methodology I selected keywords in my […]

Analytics & conversion

Managing Tail Terms: Balancing Risk & Reward

The savvy search marketer always explores tail terms to improve overall performance. If done right, tail terms can convert better than the head and can also be cheaper in terms of Cost Per Click (CPC). Hence, effective tail management lifts the performance of the overall campaign. When exploring the tail, marketers are always faced with […]

Analytics & conversion

Dayparting: Profitable Tactic Or Waste Of Time?

Hour of day bidding, or dayparting, has been the topic of much discussion of late. Advertisers want to leverage every possible trend to maximize their profits, and one way to do this is to take advantage of search engines providing advertisers with the flexibility to run their campaigns with bidding by hour of day. With […]

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