Online Marketing

Will Google take over the world?

I typed this into a popular search engine, no prizes for guessing which one… Its a question which has plagued me for a while, I already have Google as my home page on my phone, desktop, laptop and tablet, I have gmail on 2 android phones, Google play  where I store music and books and obviously I have preferred search engine.

Not sure who it is but this blogger wrote about gooogle world domination in 2004, and he was probably on to something, at the time, Google play wasn’t invented, there wasn’t too many android handsets about and I dunno if Chrome was invented or whether they had bought YouTube at that point or had double click, I’m not going to write a list of Google products here but the point is Google has come a long way in the 10 years since the article. Just look at this:

The next article was on debate.org where 67% of people think that Google will take over the world, (read some of the comments, for comedy gold.) The 3rd post was viralnova’s google facts which is quite a fun read and many a true word is spoken in jest.

Anyway, the answer to the question depends on your perspective. Given that Google know what you searched for last, who you emailed 3 years ago, what video’s you like watching and porn tastes, and every “curiosity” search you’ve ever done, what you like to read, who your friends are and your music tastes, it probably already has.

Half the the people who work in marketing have had to adapt to Google, and go on courses just to stay relevant. Google is in the dictionary and my Gran even says “Google it” You can’t really escape Google and I don’t know what’s next, they may lose a bit to IOS using Bing as default, but I doubt it makes a difference, because IOS sucks. Also the amount of times my other half as text me to say “have you seen Google today, its funny.”

Like it or not, its part of your life and all in all it ain’t half bad for a bunch of geeks who sit around on bean bags all day. Anyway watching this video will help you make your own mind up.

Rounding off the week: link removals, re directs and getting customers to use the website!

After a few months of contacting web masters to try and get bad links removed (more on this later) I have finally made some progress.

This is a really tough time. if you are going to undertake a link removal initiative, consider this:  Lots of these “directories” or people who look after them will feel they are caught in the headlights when you contact them asking them to remove all links for the time being.

They probably don’t want to call their boss and tell them about the requests through fear of opening a can of worms. After all you are complaining in a sense, that they are a crap website, or that they have irrelevant web links on your site.  YOU WILL GET IGNORED by some of them, anyway it is crucial that you go through this process, in order get a few of them taken down. Some will even say “I own a lot of websites, and have a lot of publishers, its impossible for me to identify where this link to your site is.” Some will avoid all responsibility, which is unfair. Luckily there are a couple of tools which help you and save you from the heartache.

I can review each of these in their own right at a later date, but do check them out for your self for the time being. Any this is still ongoing but I have done a lot of the legwork with this, so it felt like a huge weight especially after contacting lists of people based on links to the site in the web master tools.

Its been an uphill struggle this week getting any SEO done,  especially as I’m getting more and more pulled into sales side of the business due to staff shortages. Which, might I had has probably improved traffic in its own right, as everyone I have spoken to has been directed to the website and shown how to use it properly and found what they are looking for! I’ve also figured that if you use your ESP to share your emails  to facebook/twitter/linked in you can use this as a email archive. Woo hoo. I may have also cracked twitter, by getting followers I’ve had real life conversations with.

This is old fashioned front line marketing – speaking to people. Who’d of thought it works?

The other thing that happened was that I got about 12 domains, to point to the right place with a Cname, at first I overlooked www & http:// but I got there in the end, and this meant that I have probably gotten over the duplicate content issue.

Next step – getting rid of the duplicate titles and descriptions, that are built in to the CMS. yeah a CMS that harms my SEO, that’s brilliant! How would you know though, I wont, because the gods (Google) wont tell you if you have an automatic penalty, you just wont get any traffic, but still its better to be safe than sorry I suppose.

I also had the realisation the other day that the kids in secondary school are learning programming, web design and Adobe CS4 and photography. Is this the end of the graphic designer, digital executive?  Only time will tell.

Not sure what’s on the horizon for us digital folk but I’ve had a decent week!

 

Consider the impact of PPC on your offline goals.

I’ve decided to rehash this post as its relevant to work I’ve been doing lately. This scenario may be familiar to millions: You haven’t had any sales on your site, but your spending tons on Adwords. What are you missing?

Take a look at this picture of an experiment on an E-commerce site. What does it show?

Analytics screen shot

what is this even showing?

A decrease in web traffic

All it shows is less hits on a website once Adwords was paused. To some it looks like the site is doomed.  If I was to show you a conversion for E-commerce sales and monetize this then it would look even worse. This is a real problem for SMEs the world over.

What’s more important… Traffic or leads? What impact does ad words have on overall business? 70 percent of the visitors are new. 1,886 unique people have seen this site in 7 weeks. 50% of them are from Adwords. How would a business cope if it got that many extra phone calls? Or that much passing trade… most SMEs would need more staff to cope with that. Anyway, what happened was: 15% of website visitors from the campaign requested a call back – for information on high ticket items.  The number of times the website was cited under “how did you hear about us” increased by 5%. This is all linked.

So what?

If the sales team that deal with these inquiries can convert, you’ve returned your investment. Just because a goal isn’t met in your E-commerce site, does not mean something else hasn’t improved – make sure you see the bigger picture. Many people are researching online but purchasing offline. Consider the impact of your digital activities on offline activities and you might just realise your efforts are working.

How can I track this?

It’s difficult, half the time you rely on other people to do make your metrics work. A lot of web agencies will tell you now that they can put  a phone number on each advert and port it to your phone, whilst this works, you rely on the agency. Consider having an “adwords phone” where you use one number for all ads, or make sure that the adverts go to a unique landing page.