What IS Attribution Modeling?

Ever wonder why the conversion data in your Analytics account is different from AdWords?  That is because of attribution modeling. An attribution model is a rule or multiple rules that are assigned to different touchpoints in a conversion path.  Consumers may interact with multiple touchpoints during their purchasing journey. Attribution models help marketers develop a better understanding of how to optimize their website and online advertising to facilitate a consumer’s conversion path. There are 6 Attribution Models: Last Click, First Click, Linear, Time Decay, and Position-Based.

Google Analytics

Last Click Model

The last click model gives all credit of the conversion to the last ad and the corresponding keyword. This model is best suited for when your advertising goal is to attract people at the moment of purchase, or your sales cycle does not include a consideration phase. This is the default model in AdWords.

In the automotive purchasing journey, car shoppers experience many touchpoints before they commit to a purchase. According to Google, a consumer can have over 900 digital interactions over a 3-month period. By only tracking with the last click model, we are missing out on the hundreds of interactions before the final conversion.

First Click Model 

The first click model gives all credit of the conversion to the first clicked ad and keyword. This model is helpful when tracking initial brand awareness. If you are trying to build your brand, this model will help track when your customers are first exposed to your brand.

Linear Model

The linear model gives credit of the conversion across all of the touchpoints in the path. For example, your Paid, Organic, and Social channels will all equally contribute to the conversion. You will use this model if you want to maintain a presence with the customer throughout the entire purchasing journey. All of your campaigns are equally important during the buying process.

Time Decay Model

This model gives more credit to clicks that happen closer to the time of the conversion. If a customer clicked on your Facebook ad a week ago and never converted, but converted an hour after clicking your paid search ad, your paid search ad will be given more credit to the conversion than the Facebook ad. Advertisers who run short promotions will find this model most useful to give more credit to interactions that happened during the days of the promotion.

Position-Based Model

Position-based model gives 40% of the credit to the first and last clicked ads, and spreads the remaining 20% across all other touchpoints. Advertisers who use this model value the first interaction that introduced the costumer to the brand, and the last interaction that lead to a sale.

Fractional conversion credits are available to accounts that follow an attribution model that attribute fractional credit for each conversion across multiple clicks. The fractions are represented as a decimal such as 0.33 or 0.5 to give an accurate representation of the credit of the keyword or ad.

At Strathcom Media, our advertising experts have the skills and the tools to track all of the necessary touchpoints to understand your consumer purchasing journey. Interested in making the most of your online advertising with attribution modeling? Contact our sales team today to get started on a smarter way to advertise online!

Think with Google – Online Video Planning

Camera lens with lense reflections.

The Think with Google resource gives us online video planning tips for success with online videos. The first tip is to be mobile-minded. Google’s research found that viewers who watched an ad twice on mobile had – on average – a significant lift of 23% in unaided brand awareness, and 47% in unaided ad recall.

Think with Google also suggests to put YouTube alongside TV. But for most small to medium businesses, this might not be as easy as it would be for big-box businesses. So what’s the alternative? Put YouTube alongside Facebook. Not only are you adhering to the first tip, but you’re also choosing to advertise on a platform where people spend their time watching videos. When was the last time you watched a video on Facebook? The answer is probably yesterday or when you were on your coffee break.

Facebook is also more measurable than TV because you can track conversions from pixels and generate leads right from Facebook through their lead ads objective. In addition to the ability to generate leads, you can also track performance and measure key performance indicators to see if it’s all living up to your expectations.

online video planning tips

You can read the referenced Think With Google content here. If you would like more online video planning tips, check out or previous post about YouTube or give our Online Marketing Team a call; and don’t forget to ask about how you can get $500 in bonus Facebook ad spend!

Adjusting AdWords For Mobile Traffic

According to a Google study of mobile traffic, 96% of people use their smartphone to get everyday things done. To meet those needs, people will use search functions – the resource 87% of people turn to first. In moments of need, people turn to their smartphones.

Secondly, they found that 70% of smartphone owners who bought something in-store had turned first to their devices for information about that purchase. To tie it back to the previous finding, they found 92% of those who search on their phone made a related purchase.

So what does this mean for you?

This means that you need a strong mobile strategy. Smartphone owners utilizing searches are likely to make a follow-up action, and another after that, until they meet their needs. Having a strong mobile campaign in your AdWords will ensure you are taking advantage of this knowledge.

mobile traffic

What can you do to have a strong mobile campaign?

  • Mobile-only campaign
  • Mobile-specific bids – mobile bids are different from desktop bids, so why treat them the same?
  • Mobile-specific ads and extensions – with extended-text ads, you currently can’t make ‘mobile-preferred’ ads; however, the mobile-only campaign will make sure these ads show only on mobile devices. Use mobile CTAs as much as possible. If you have historical data on extensions (that’s good), use it as a starting point in optimizing your mobile campaign.

At the end of the day, your AdWords account should be built with a mobile perspective first. Need some advice about mobile traffic? Contact our online marketing team today!

Read the referenced Google material here: https://www.thinkwithgoogle.com/articles/mobile-search-consumer-behavior-data.html

Build a Desktop-Focused Campaign in a Mobile-First World

Yes, you read that correctly. Implementing a desktop-focused campaign can get you a better CPA – not alone, though.

Close up of elegant young business men standing against the wall and checking their mobile phones.

Every day, users search on the go with their mobile devices. You never know where people will be, so you can’t lock down one postal code or small area around your store. People search from everywhere, which is completely different from a desktop search. That’s why we need to be able to focus on mobile and desktop separately, and by making both a desktop-focused campaign and a mobile-focused campaign, we can achieve this.

AdWords accounts should be taking advantage of the ability for device segmentation. You should have campaigns that focus on both desktop and mobile search. You can do this by adjusting campaign settings so the mobile bid adjustment is set to -100%; this will make the entire campaign’s ads and keywords never show on a mobile device.

The next step is to clone that campaign and set up mobile-specific ad extensions, bids, and ad copy (and don’t forget landing pages if you don’t have a responsive website). This ensures that your keywords only activate the mobile ads in this campaign.

Now you have one campaign bidding for desktop and mobile at the same time and can focus your ad copy to speak to mobile users. In addition, you can see the value come from each device-segmented campaign at a higher level, whereas before you’d need to look at a segmented view in AdWords, which can be a bit of a mess to look at.

For more information, don’t hesitate to drop us a line or subscribe to our newsletter!

Updates to AdWords Keyword Planner

Google announced an update to Keyword PlannerThe AdWords Keyword Planner tool is one of the best resources used by advertisers to pinpoint new opportunities and substantiate investment into paid search campaigns. Earlier this month, Google announced an update to the tool that would require users to have an active AdWords campaign in order to gain access to full data as well as restrictions to users with “lower monthly spend.” Unfortunately, the limited data from these restrictions includes broad ranges for potential search volumes that would greatly reduce the effectiveness of the Keyword Planner.

Although users of the AdWords Keyword Planner are accustomed to working with the ranges provided, which are rounded-up numbers divisible by 10, now the data is even more imprecise. The ranges provided to these restricted accounts are:

  • 0
  • 1-100
  • 100-1k
  • 1k-10k
  • 10k-100k
  • 100k-1m
  • 1m+

It would be reasonable to assume that smaller businesses have smaller AdWords accounts and therefore are likely to be impacted by this aspect to the update. According to Google, “most” advertisers will see the data as usual. Google did not provide specifics on what it deems to be “lower monthly spend,” and therefore at this time, it is unclear what the minimum ad spend is for full access to detailed search volume data.

Should You Use Responsive Ads?

In addition to Expanded Text Ads (ETA’s) Google has also recently released Responsive Ads – are they right for your business?

Depending on the website, you can feature different combinations of your Responsive Ads. A short headline with the description, a long headline and a description, or a short/long headline. All this means is that your ad will have more opportunities to reach your target audience while they spend their time online. Note that long headlines and description lines are 90 characters, while the short headline is 25 characters. They also allow for branding, since Google allows you to upload a logo and an image.

Increase your brand's awareness by including your logo

One concept to think about when using responsive ads is the number of characters you use in the headlines and the description lines. The possible combinations would mean that your ad will take on ad spots where your ad would make no sense without a concise message in the headlines. Additionally, because of the lack of control (i.e. telling Google an ad can only show if the description line shows), Google might feature your description but only half of it – due to the size of the ad. In other words: don’t say more than you need to!

Another point is that Google can’t show you previews for every type of ad , so the creative you come up with might not meet your expectations on different websites. It all heavily depends on where the ads are shown. I suggest controlling this by finding strong performing placements/websites where they show and excluding mobile apps at the campaign level.

Consider how to target the mobile market

At the end of the day, you should take advantage of responsive ads since they offer more than Google Text Ads. However, like anything else in an AdWords account, monitor them closely. You can let Google find strong performing websites, but rein in control right away when you find them. Don’t let these responsive ads run rampant! As soon as performance dips for an extended period of time let Google find better performing websites or change your creative and repeat the process.

Why Should You Hire an Agency to do Your AdWords?

Focus on your business knowing your advertising campaigns are in good hands!

Our Google Certified Paid Search Analysts have gone through extensive training internally, and are constantly learning new best practices, developing best practices for the auto industry, as well as investing in education and resources to make sure you succeed. Not only are we Google Certified for Google products, we are also well equipped to advertise on your behalf on other advertising platforms (Facebook & Bing).

Get an AdWords campaign that's tailored for your business

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Car Parts & Service: The Auction Your Dealership Is Missing Out On

The hard truth: winter is coming. And with winter, comes white walkers snow and ice that require consumers to switch from their summer to winter tires. Car parts and services search queries happen year round, but many queries see huge seasonal peaks that your dealership should be capitalizing on.  With the looming seasonal change upon us, is your dealership ready to face the long night?

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Your Guide to Google Engagements Ads: What are they and who should use them?

Step up your strategy on the Google Display Network (GDN) and increase user interaction with Google Engagement Ads. Rolled out by Google in 2013, Engagement Ads allow advertisers to use rich media ads that allow your customers to engage with your ads. Compared to traditional Display Ads in the GDN – that use still images to entice users – Engagement Ads give the customer a choice to play a video, or interact with an expanded canvas. If you’re a business who is looking to improve your GDN game, or to engage with your consumers, look no further.

GDN ads help engage potential customers.

Continue reading “Your Guide to Google Engagements Ads: What are they and who should use them?”

How Should I Target My Location?

If this question has never crossed your mind, it’s a good thing I’m asking it.

There are many ways to target one city or location, but some methods are going to be much more effective than others. It also depends on the size of your budget. Obviously the larger your budget, the more you can target in regards to location.

Geotargeting helps grow your business

So let’s consider your budget. Ask, “What locations can I effectively target with my budget?” Asking the right questions will move you one step closer to targeting more effectively. On top of that, if you are planning on expanding your location targeting, can you still afford to target that many locations with your current set of keywords? The last thing you want is for campaigns that are providing a strong ROI to be in the hot seat when you open up the location targeting because they become limited by budget.

Once you have the available locations you’re able to target with your budget with the current set of keywords (or the select few you’ve chosen), you can ask “Is this a radius target or specific target?” In my opinion, you should always be targeting specific locations if Google allows you to. Heck, if you can target individual postal codes within a location, do that! Only use a radius targeting zone if you can’t target specific individual towns or communities.

Choosing the right geotargets is critical

But why?

The reason is, if you know exactly what kind of performance data comes from each individual zone, you can make smart bidding decisions. Pay less for less qualified traffic. Pay more for more qualified traffic. Or you can simply make the decision to no longer actively target that location.

There is definitely some leg work to figure out this kind of information to make more informed decisions. If you need some help, or want even more advanced strategies contact one of our Online Marketing Managers for more helpful insights or advice.

Conquering Mobile Conversions Part 1: The Moments That Matter

Going into 2016, Google reported some big changes in the way consumers are researching and purchasing online. Google has reported that 86% of research is done on mobile, and 52% of these searches are done during work hours. It’s pretty clear we are shifting to a mobile driven world, when we consider these additional stats: we are checking our phones 150 times, and spending 177 minutes on our phones a day.

Customers are spending more and more time on their smartphones

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Why Conquesting Should be a Fundamental Part of your Dealership Strategy!

brand loyalty strathcom media canadian car dealer website advertising

Every year, Google shares some valuable insights with their automotive partners in the form of their Think Auto study. Sifting through this goldmine of data, it made me realize that not enough dealers focus on conquesting and as a result they are missing out.  To set the stage, here are a few points from Google’s research I found particularly valuable:

  • 75% of the automotive research process is done online
  • The average consumer only visits 1.5 dealerships in person compared to 5 back in 2005
  • 87% of people consider multiple brands during the research and shopping process
  • 71% of people switched brands with a new purchase (was driving a Ford and bought a Chev)
  • 81% of people are using search engines during the shopping process and search leads to brand discovery
  • People are open to influence from the start
    • 63% start with a competitive brand in mind and buy something else
    • 14% start with a brand in mind and buy it
    • 23% have no brand in mind

Okay, so we can all agree that a bunch of stats can be boring, so what does this actually mean?

We know that the research and shopping process is predominantly done online, no surprise.  However, what most dealers and manufacturers don’t want to admit is that brand loyalty is low, VERY low.  Only about 12% of shoppers are brand loyal and about 14% of shoppers buy the brand that they first have in mind.

This is why you need to focus on conquesting!

So how can we do this?

Here are three steps to start a good conquesting strategy:

  1. Brand and model comparison pages on your website. Few dealers actually do this.  You might have heard about this strategy in the past but did you actually go and write why the 2016 Ford F-150 is better than every other truck in the market?
  2.  Incorporate a conquest strategy into your paid search campaigns. People use search engines in the research process and then discover new brands as a result.  If you’re a Chevy dealer trying to compete with the new Tacoma maybe you want to come up in this search:
  3. conquest searchDon’t forget about the 2nd most popular search engine in Canada, YouTube. Leverage the popularity of YouTube and film some comparison videos.  Walk around your Dodge Ram 1500 explaining why it is superior to the Silverado and Sierra.  With some simple editing software you can even loop in some stock footage of competing models.

The reality is people are not brand loyal, they are open to influence and you can take advantage of this.  Why focus on first time buyers when they only make up 17% of the market, focus on the 71% of people who are open to switching.

Get Conquesting, Get More Leads.

The New Google-Yahoo Search Agreement

Google continues to hold the lion's share of the search engine market.

 

After taking a break, Yahoo and Google are getting back together in a new, non-exclusive relationship.  Yahoo has revealed a three year deal with Google that will allow Google to supply search ads to Yahoo’s search results page.  The deal sets up Google to provide search results and ads for an undisclosed amount of Yahoo search queries. The ads will appear on desktop and mobile platforms.  The new deal comes long after Yahoo and Google ended their first search advertising relationship in 2004 when Yahoo decided to develop its own service, Gemini.

Still have questions about the deal? Here are several other things you need to know:

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Google Removes Right Side Ads from Desktop SRP

Big changes are coming from the forces over at Google. As of February 19th, 2016, Google has removed the ability to serve ads on the right hand side of the desktop’s search results page. This means ads must place on the top three positions, or fall to the bottom of the page, to be seen on a consumer’s search result page.

Google has removed ads from the right side of the SRP

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How To Revamp Your Search Strategy with Audiences

In the world of Google Search, keyword targeting has become the most specific method of reaching out to customers with the intent of purchasing the products and services your dealership has to offer. Traditional keyword targeting also ensures ads are within relevant context by including several metrics such Quality Score and Click-thru-Rate.  However, no matter how granular you try to be in your keyword basket, it’s difficult to understand audience behavior based on their keyword searches.

The first resource most people turn to when searching for their next vehicle.

With the launch of remarketing lists for search ads (RLSA); intent, context, and audience were combined to create a search campaign tailored to past visitors of your site who are searching Google for your dealership, vehicles, and services.  Since implementing RLSA’s to our accounts’ strategy, remarketing has now proven to be as successful at targeting past website visitors on the Display and Search Network.

Modern advertising involves targeting the individual.

Now, we are able to combine the success of keywords and RLSAs by adding different ‘bid only’ audiences to your targeting strategy in the Search Network. By adding different audiences to our ad groups, we can serve ads and unique landing pages depending on the audience the customer belongs to, the next time they conduct a generic Google search.

For example, we can add shoppers looking to buy a Honda Civic and a Honda CR-V on separate lists, and the next time these users search for “new Honda”, we can serve them either Civic or CR-V specific ads with landings pages that lead them to claim an offer or book a test drive for their desired model.

Targeted marketing can increase your sales

Coupled with Customer Match targeting, we can move prospecting car buyers down the conversion funnel from researchers to loyal customers.

Here at Strathcom, we are dedicated to improving our skills and knowledge by staying up to date on all new PPC trends and products. Call us today to get started on your new PPC account!

YellowPages Advertising: How Not To Get Ripped Off Running PPC

It was YellowPages in the Library with the Candlestick!

A couple months back, Alexandre Brabant posted his experience helping a client decipher what was going on with their Ad Words campaign being run by the Yellow Pages Group, what he found was they were employing some shady techniques to increase the amount of money they were receiving for running the campaign – all behind the customers back. This gave us the idea to give you, the reader, some questions to ask your Yellow Pages rep or any rep who is running Ad Words on behalf of your business.

Continue reading “YellowPages Advertising: How Not To Get Ripped Off Running PPC”

A Morsel of Structured Snippets

Ad extensions are a proven method of improving ad performance metrics by providing more relevant information extended from your ads. By implementing ad extensions, you can expect two things:

  1. Greater visibility of your ads: ad extensions are viewed at the top of the Google Search Network, instead of at the side of the search results page. They are also helpful in improving your ad position; if competing ads have equal bid and quality, the ad with relevant ad extensions will appear higher than the other.
  2. Improved ROI:  gain valuable clicks to generate profitable customer traffic. Your click-through-rate will thank you as well.

Example of a location extension

Continue reading “A Morsel of Structured Snippets”

Google’s Changes to Quality Score – What Does It Mean for You?

Quality Score is one of the key attributes in ensuring the success of your AdWords account. At the end of the day Quality Score does two things for you:

  • Enables your keywords to be eligible and tells Google your ads can be shown
  • Lowers your cost of advertising

Quality score can range from 1 through 10, 10 being the highest quality score can be and guarantees eligibility for your ad to be shown. Google wants to make sure that ads are relevant to the user, and a score of 10 proves this.

Continue reading “Google’s Changes to Quality Score – What Does It Mean for You?”

What is your provider counting as a lead?

At Strathcom Media, we know how important it is to track how many customers are submitting forms through your website or calling your dealership directly. So, unlike other providers that report website visits or clicks as leads, we report actual leads.

Tracking actual leads means collecting the important information your dealership needs to increase sales and determine the effectiveness of your campaigns. That’s why we always include Lead/Conversion Tracking in our clients’ Pay-Per-Click accounts.

 

google

Lead/Conversion Tracking provides you with the data you need to make educated decisions about your dealership.

 
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Coming Soon: Using AdWords to Schedule Ads Based on the Weather

Google AdWords Weather App
As the weather changes, so do your dealer ads.

In sales, we have been describing leads as hot or cold for decades. Knowing whether a lead is primed and ready to buy, or indifferent and resistant to a sale, helps us to use our time and resources more effectively.

But what if we’ve become so used to these clichés that it caused us to overlook a key insight at the root of the analogy: the physical temperature of the lead?

Essentially, is the person you’re trying to sell to currently reaching for the switch of their space heater or their ceiling fan?

If we knew how hot or cold it was in a target area, we could program weather-specific ads that would only show up when the temperature was in a certain range.

Introducing AdWords Weather Targeting

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