Ally SEO and PPC for some seriously stunning CTR

The key to any successful SEO and SEM campaign is utilising data to make the right decisions. The focus here isn’t to pit SEO against PPC, but rather to establish when and where the two can (and should) be used in partnership with each other.

By using data from both of these traffic sources, you will be able to fill information gaps, creating a broader picture of the factors that affect your website’s visibility in the search engine results page (SERP). And now that Google is limiting data more and more, providing it to only paying advertisers, using both these disciplines has become critical to our digital strategies.

How can SEO and SEM work together on a click-through-rate basis?

In a recent AdWords ‘paid and organic’ dimension report, the data suggests that CTR substantially increases when both paid and organic ads are shown together. SEER Interactive recently implemented this report for six of their clients and found that when paid ads were shown alone, they achieved a CTR of 5.66% and similarly, organic results shown alone got 6.15%. Now here’s the kicker — when paid and organic listing were shown together the CTR for paid results increased to 18.06% and organic results to a whopping 38.26%! This impressive data strongly indicates that SEO and PPC support each other, and having both on the SERPs is going to generate synergy and make a bigger impression on the searcher.

Run AdWords first

First, properly set up an optimised AdWords account with clearly defined campaigns, ad groups that are tightly knit to keywords and relevant ads that direct to relevant landing pages. A well thought out and implemented AdWords campaign will be strongly beneficial in the beginning because:

Budget: Small to medium sized businesses probably don’t have the budget to smash out on something like SEO. In today’s world, optimising your site properly can be very costly, not to mention results can take up to three months to start realising — that’s a whole three months with potentially no gain on your company’s targets! By running a PPC campaign, you’ll bring visitors to your site and you only pay when someone clicks through. This way, you will be getting some kind of return and, if it produces any mount of profit, it can be put towards your future SEO campaign.

Awareness & CRO: Don’t stress if your AdWords campaign isn’t producing the profits you were hoping for in the beginning, the value is still there. You continue to bring visitors to your site, which not only increases awareness to your searchers, but provides you with extremely important data. You’ll learn how visitors interact with your site, which pages convert better and the keywords that perform best on each individual page.

SEO Learnings: Google AdWords provides a wealth of knowledge when it comes to how search engines appraise your website. Not only will you be able to see how Google judges your page, but how your visitors do too (i.e. bounce rates, exit rates, time on page). You’ll also be able to see which pages and keywords have better quality scores.

Once you’ve gathered enough data through AdWords, you can start focusing on your SEO. Two metrics that are especially useful are quality score (QS) and cost-per-click (CPC). By looking at the QS and CPC for inbound keywords on specific pages, we can gather important information that Google themselves use when decision making. Based on this data we can build a fairly decent idea of:

  1. How relevant Google deems a keyword to a landing page (QS)
  2. How competitive a specific keyword is to target (CPC)

Once you have this keyword information you can actively decide which keywords to target.

So in the end, SEO and SEM are two traffic sources cut from the same cloth. They complement each other in SERP and cooperate to provide you a better overall CTR, and by employing AdWords in the beginning, you’ll be able to retrieve data that, when later applied will give you a winning SEO strategy.

Stalk your customers online with Google Remarketing

Like a jilted lover, eCommerce merchants have long waited, helplessly, with the hope that their fickle consumers, who abandoned their site without completing an action, see the err of their ways and return to them, faithful and true. Well proprietors, behold! Step out of the shadows of blind faith for a new day has dawned! An era in which you can safely stalk your capricious deserter by subtly reminding them that only you possess the good or service they truly cannot live without. Welcome to the Age of Remarketing.

Remarketing (sometimes referred to as “retargeting”) is a form of pay per click advertising which allows eCommerce entrepreneurs to show banner advertisements to users who previously visited their site as they browse the rest of the web.

Here’s how it works:

1. A prospect user enters your site

2. A tracking cookie is dropped on their browser

3. Prospect user leaves your site without converting or taking the desired action

4. You display banner ads to that user as they continue to browse other websites

5. Ads entice the user to come back to your website and complete desired action

Basically, a persistent little voice saying, “Hey. Hey, you. Remember me? Don’t waste your time endlessly searching for other products– I’m right here!”

Getting previous visitors to return to your site is an obvious perk of using remarketing, however, that isn’t the only benefit.

Improve ROI on marketing budgets

For businesses that are already spending money on driving traffic to a website, remarketing can extend the conversion funnel to your most qualified visitors.

Increase Brand Awareness

Re-displaying ads to new prospects increases the likelihood of brand retention and awareness.

Granular retargeting capabilities

Which means, advertisers can use tailored messaging and incentives based on a user’s browsing behaviour. For instance, if you have just purchased a tent for an upcoming camping trip, you might be a good target to promote sleeping bags.


If you decide to go the route of Google Dynamic Remarketing, you have further options to target visitor groups and choose which ones you want your ads to show up for.

All visitors:  Everyone who views your site

General visitors:  Those who visited your site but did not view any specific product. The dynamic ad will include the most popular products from your website

Product views:  People who viewed specific product pages but did not add them to a shopping cart. Here, the dynamic ad will show the viewed products alongside some recommended products

Shopping cart abandoners:  People who viewed specific items, added them to their shopping cart, but did not complete the purchase. Items will prioritise items added to the cart and will mix in other viewed products as well as recommended ones

Past buyers:  The dynamic ad will show related products to those previously purchased and items that were often bought together

So after reading this, you are probably thinking, “I need to incorporate remarketing into my digital strategy so I don’t turn out to be the sad, lonely peddler in the introductory analogy…” Great! Here are a few recommended practices to help get you from zero to hero in a flash.

Establish granular marketing lists

The more targeted the original traffic, the better the remarketing response

Avoid overexposure

Use frequency capping and ad scheduling to avoid harassing your audience, not to mention cut down on ad spend

Test, Analyse, Optimise

Overtime, begin to strike out the negatively performing placements and reward the positives


Whether you are an online retailer, a goods or service provider or a B2B marketer looking to improve your ROI, we can help introduce remarketing into your digital strategy alongside a wealth of tools to cultivate your brand.


Talk to Managing Director, Steve Ballantyne. e:



Mobile ads: A little less conversation, a little more action

Mobile devices have undeniably become an intrinsic part of our daily life and routine. They are so indispensable, in fact, that we are starting to associate them with our innermost circle of vital personal belongings — right up there with our keys, wallets, and watches.

And why wouldn’t it be? Calls, texts, email, online banking and social media is in the palm of our hand and instantly accessible. It’s a wonder then, that mobile isn’t hailed as the quarterback of the advertising platform team. In fact, it’s not even close. Mobile is like the third-string kicker. Who is only on the team because he’s the coach’s nephew…once removed. And if you aren’t following my American-sport analogy, mobile advertising’s performance is so underwhelming it is getting relatively no action whatsoever.

So what is holding mobile advertising back?

First and foremost, our preservative attitude about our mobile devices — they contain personal matters, i.e. contacts, pictures, messages, that we deem private. Unwarranted advertisements that appear on screen are generally felt to be intrusive and unacceptable.

Aside from being a general annoyance (fun fact: an individual is more likely to survive a plane crash than click a banner ad), mobile ads are difficult to read, unattractive and cumbersome. It is estimated that around 50 percent of mobile ads are clicked unintentionally due to awkward placement and tiny screens, making it impossible to gauge an ad’s effectiveness or collect an accurate reading.

Mobile campaigns are certainly facing some unavoidable hurdles, but who doesn’t love a good underdog story? Getting advertisements seen via mobile is possible, we just have to shift our focus.

Too often marketers exhaust their efforts by measuring the direct response success of a campaign when the most effective methods are those that are cross-platform and branding conscious. For the past few years, Starbucks has led the mobile marketing push with a carefully integrated, cross-channel programme. They operate with a high level of consciousness about their clients; by tracking mobile payments, rewarding customer loyalty and cleverly presenting ads across countless platforms, Starbucks’ success becomes measurable and their actions become branding experiences.

Mobile marketing, when delivered in an intelligent way, can certainly be advantageous to a brand. The challenge now for marketers and advertisers is to be open and experimental to find new and innovative ways to breed better ads that are delivered as a part of a larger, cross-platform campaign.

Curious with how mobile marketing could work for you?

Have a chat with Managing Director, Steve Ballantyne about how effective it can be on +64 9 950 2140

If Adwords is failing you, it’s because you’ve failed Adwords

Is your company using AdWords? If not, you’re failing already. But it’s not too late! It’s quick, targeted, has a vast reach, and, if you are doing it right, is completely cost-effective. Whether you are an internet entrepreneur or a large corporation, Google AdWords can be one of the best or worst advertising investments your business makes — it’s all about your strategy. In short, you want to turn searches into sales and unfortunately, companies often make the same mistakes over and over again keeping them from achieving the return on investment they deserve.

If you or your ad manager are making one or more of the following three mistakes, you are going to Google’s allegorical house, using your hard-earned dollar bills as kindling for a metaphorical bonfire and watching it burn. And the worst part — your very real money is only keeping Google warm at night.


1. You are not tracking conversions

Clicks are good, but you aren’t advertising on AdWords for the clicks. You want action, sales, sign-ups. In order to gauge whether or not your site is procuring the desired action step, you need to measure conversions. Did the visitor go forward with the desired action or did they hit the back button? This helps you structure your site to turn views into leads and sales; without this information you are flying blind in a situation when you don’t need to be.


2. You are sending people to your home page

And for shame on you if you do! I, the viewer, have already done my initial search, found what I was looking for, and your ad directs me to your home page to start my search all over again? You’ve lost my money and your other viewers’ too. There needs to be a dedicated landing page; the best ones focus on a single call to action. They don’t have any distracting links or navigation and they sell the one thing that made viewers click on your ad in the first place.


3. You have overloaded Dynamic Keyword Insertion

Many AdWords strategies seem to pick every possible word under the sun and run them on Dynamic Keyword Insertion. When DKI is used correctly it can be a highly effective ad writing technique, but when it’s not, it’s just a money pit.


Has your ad manager avoided these three cardinal sins of AdWords? I doubt it. And if he/she hasn’t and you are serious about your investment, give us a call. Seriously. I’ll even give you a taster.


1. Be more discerning with your keywords. Instead of bidding on hopelessly unspecific words like “grass”, choose more definitive terms that show at least a small amount of devotion such as, “wheat grass” or “grass roots”.


2. Use negative keywords to prevent your ads from showing up in irrelevant searches. This can significantly reduce your cost-per-conversion.


3.Use remarketing to retarget browsers.It’s an extremely effective way to draw viewers back into your site and stay top-of-mind.


If your ad manager isn’t cutting the mustard, kick him to the curb. We are champing at the bit to pick up the slack and optimise your money. Get in touch and we’ll happily provide you with a free no obligation account audit.


Contact Managing Director, Steve Ballantyne. p: 09 950 2140