Trending March 2024 # The Fifth Adwords Match Type: Phrase Match Modifier # Suggested April 2024 # Top 4 Popular

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Have you ever wanted to merge Phrase Match and Broad Match Modifier into a single keyword like these people?

It can be frustrating when you want the reach of BMM, but the control of Phrase Match.

Here is what one user had to say:

I am trying to create a keyword pattern that will match the following searches …

london to paris by bus

bus from london to paris

… but not the following searches (opposite travel direction) …

paris to london by bus

bus from paris to london

I imagine using a keyword like the following, but I don’t thinks this is allowed:

“london to paris” +bus

This user was disappointed to hear that:

You cannot use different match types within the same keywords,

The best approach would be to use exact match type with all combinations possible of this query.

The search terms report can be a useful tool.

A few years ago, I was also frustrated that I couldn’t use Phrase Match with a Broad Match Modifier.

I started testing different syntaxes and measuring results in the search terms report.

I tried everything from “the regular” +symbols to #much_more=bizarre &symbols.

After a few months of testing, I noticed something interesting in a search term report.

I saw that when chúng tôi was bid on, it showed up in the search term report as www url com.

I then had a theory that a period would be processed as a space.

After another few rounds of testing, I found a combination that produced the results I was looking for.

How to Use Phrase Match Modifier

For the first time, not protected by an NDA, I am happy to share Phrase Match Modifier for AdWords.

You can now combine Phrase Match with Broad Match, Broad Match Modifier, and other Phrase Match phrases within one keyword. Here are examples of how to use them.

You can +mix +modified +broad +match with broad match and

When you add the period between words that start with +, you are binding those words together in that order. They then function like a phrase match within the larger keyword.

PMM is most useful when the specific order of words significantly changes what they mean.

The order of those words completely changes the intent of the search.

You can use PMM to get the semantic control of Phrase Match while still keeping the reach and flexibility of BMM.

A great use case for PMM is when you want to add geographic modifiers to phrase match terms.

For instance, +vacation.home +Florida. A user searching for “home vacation” is not looking for the same thing as a user searching for “vacation home”, however, “Florida” can show up nearly anywhere in the search and hold the same meaning.

Geographic modifiers are a powerful tool for identifying intent for users.

In many industries, users include a location in their search because they are looking for a business where they can take action. They are often further down the funnel, and PMM allows you to easily keep a tight hold on the placements you buy while capturing all the variations of geographically modified searches.

What About Quality Score

You may be wondering what the PMM syntax does to quality score.

Quality score is calculated for every auction, and the keyword itself only serves to enter an ad into that auction.

The keyword text is not an element of the calculation, just a gatekeeper to entering the auction.

Quality score is then calculated by measuring the relevance of the user’s search phrase to the ad and landing page.

When I use PMM, I see higher quality scores as a result of earning a higher CTR through entering fewer irrelevant auctions.

How Does PMM Impact Stemming

PMM will allow stemming or close variants within your keywords, but I find that the phrase match portion of the PMM tends to be more conservative in its variant matches than the BMM portion.

Check out this real search term report for the PMM +NJ. Driving matched to driver, school matched to schools, and NJ matched to New Jersey:

In this example of a PMM search term report, you can see how it works for +cdl +in.NJ.

The phrase match portion, +in.NJ, was not able to match to “in New Jersey”, only “in NJ”.

What I typically see is that the phrase match portions of the PMM will not expand abbreviations like BMM will, but will catch basic stemming like going from singular to plural.

The less comprehensive matching still saves you from having to build out excessively long keyword lists to account for basic variations.


PMM can be an effective tool for optimizing your AdWords accounts, but only when used correctly.

PMM shines when the order of specific words has a large impact on intent (e.g., free care vs care free), but you want to add modifiers, like a city name, that do not require a specific order for semantic relevance.

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Index Match Functions In Excel

In this tutorial, we’ll dive into the powerful Excel INDEX and MATCH functions, which are essential for manipulating and analyzing large sets of data.

We’ll start by exploring what these functions do and how they retrieve specific information from a table, and then we’ll write INDEX and MATCH formulas together as an alternative to the VLOOKUP formula.

We’ll also cover some practical use cases for INDEX and MATCH formulas.

Note: if you have Excel 2023 or later, or Microsoft 365 you should use the XLOOKUP function as this is easier and potentially more efficient.

Watch the INDEX and MATCH Video

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How the INDEX function works:

The INDEX function returns the value at the intersection of a column and a row.

The syntax for the INDEX function is:







, [area_num])

In English:

=INDEX( the range of your table, the row number of the table that your data is in, the column number of the table that your data is in, and if your reference specifies two or more ranges (areas) then specify which area*)

*Typically only one area is specified so the area_num argument can be omitted. The examples below don’t require area_num.

INDEX will return the value that is in the cell at the intersection of the row and column you specify.

For example, looking at the table below in the range B17:F24 we can use INDEX to return the number of program views for Bat Man in the North region with a formula as follows:








The result returned is 91.

On its own the INDEX function is pretty inflexible because you have to hard key the row and column number, and that’s why it works better with the MATCH function.

Note: You may have noticed that the INDEX function works in a similar way to the OFFSET function, in fact you can often interchange them and achieve the same results.

How the MATCH function works:

The MATCH function finds the position of a value in a list.  The list can either be in a row or a column.

The syntax for the MATCH function is:








Now I don’t want to go all syntaxy (real word 🙂 ) on you, but I’d like to point out some important features of the [match_type] argument:

The match_type argument specifies how Excel matches the lookup_value with values in lookup_array. You can choose from -1, 0 or 1 (1 is the default)

[match_type] is an optional argument, hence the square brackets. If you leave it out Excel will use the default of 1, which means it will find the largest value that is

0 will find the first value that is exactly equal to the lookup_value. The values in the lookup_array can be in any order.

Ok, that’s enough of the syntax.

In English and using the previous example:


find what row Bat Man is on


in the column range B17:B24


match it exactly (for this we'll use 0 as our argument)


The result is row 2.

We can also use MATCH to find the column number like this:


find what column North is in


in the row range B17:F17


match it exactly (again we'll use 0 as our argument)


The result is column 3.

So in summary, the INDEX function returns the value in the cell you specify, and the MATCH function tells you the column or row number for the value you are looking up.


The INDEX and MATCH functions are a popular alternative to the VLOOKUP. Even though I still prefer VLOOKUP as it’s more straight forward to use, there are certain things the INDEX + MATCH functions can do that VLOOKUP can’t.  More on that later.

Using the above example data we’ll use the INDEX and MATCH functions to find the program views for Bat Man in the East region.


the range of your table


replace this with a MATCH function to find the row number for Bat Man


replace this with a MATCH function to find the column number for East


The formula will read like this:


return the value in the table range B17:F24 in the cell that is at the intersection of


the row Bat Man is on

) and, MATCH(

the column East is in


The formula looks like this:




"Bat Man",$B$18:$B$24,0




So why would you put yourself through all that rigmarole when VLOOKUP can do the same job.

Reasons to use INDEX and MATCH rather than VLOOKUP

1) VLOOKUP can’t go left

Taking the table below, let’s say you wanted to find out what program was on the Krafty Kids channel.

VLOOKUP can’t do this because you’d be asking it to find Krafty Kids and then return the value in column B to the left, and VLOOKUP can only look to the right.

In comes INDEX and MATCH with a formula like this:

=INDEX($B$33:$B$40,MATCH("Krafty Kids",$C$33:$C$40,0))

And you get the answer; ‘Mr Maker’.

Notice only the Programs column (B) was referenced in INDEX’s array argument? This means we can omit INDEX’s column number argument as there’s only one column in the INDEX array.

2) Two way lookup

The table below has a drop down list in B1 that enables me to choose the Sales Person from the table, and a drop down list in A2 for the region.  In B2 I’ve got an INDEX + MATCH formula that returns the sales that match my two criteria.


Note: An alternative is to use a VLOOKUP and replace the hard keyed column number with a MATCH formula like this:

Ways to improve these formulas:

1) Use named ranges instead of $C$33:$C$40 etc. to make formulas more intuitive and quicker to create.

2) An alternative to using a named range is to convert the data to an Excel Table whereby Excel automatically gives the table a named range.

3) If there is nothing else in the columns other than your table you could use column references like this C:C which will search the whole column.

Oracle Expected To Match Earnings Projections

Software giant Oracle, now a hardware company as well thanks to its purchase of Sun Microsystems, reports earnings on Thursday after the close of trading, and at least one analyst believes there will be no major surprises.

That’s good or not so good, depending on your perspective. It could be argued that Oracle’s (NASDAQ: ORCL) only significant competitor on a soup-to-nuts, hardware and software basis is IBM (NYSE: IBM). On the other hand, Oracle isn’t in a high-growth industry. Much of its growth has come from acquisitions in recent years, and there aren’t that many big targets left for it any more.

There’s also the added pressure on Oracle’s margins from Sun. As Broadpoint.AmTech analyst Yun Kim noted in a research note on the company earlier this month, Oracle currently enjoys the highest operating margin in the industry and is a relentless cost cutter.

Sun, however, is a hardware company, and hardware is not known for being a high margin business (with Apple a notable exception) and could cause “Oracle’s overall margin profile to decline substantially and it may be weighed down for some time while the company digests the acquisition,” Kim wrote.

Still, Kim expects Oracle to meet estimates with revenue for the third fiscal quarter ended February 26 of $6.41 billion, a 9 percent improvement over the second fiscal quarter and a 17 percent improvement over the same quarter last year. Oracle should report net income of $1.9 billion, or $0.37 per share.

Agreeing with Kim, a consensus survey by Thomson Reuters estimates Oracle will report earnings of $6.35 billion and EPS of $0.38.

One potential area of softness might be the benefit for currency. Recent strength in the U.S. dollar versus the Euro could likely lead to much less than the 7 to 8 percent currency benefit Oracle had forecasted for the quarter. But Kim added he does not expect weaker-than-expected currency to have any significant impact on its non-GAAP EPS.

“We believe its core database business remains solid, although certain local regions and certain verticals faced a more challenging sales environment than expected. Within its database business, ORCL’s middleware business put together yet another strong performance. We believe its application business is likely to remain lackluster,” Kim wrote in his note.

All things considered, he does not project any significant changes to projections as a result. Sun, he wrote, will not be a distraction for now. “We believe that investors are likely to focus on Oracle’s core business in the near-term and not put too much emphasis on Sun’s business as long as it continues to reaffirm its FY11 financial targets, which includes contribution from Sun,” he wrote.

Sun is expected to provide around $635 million, $1 million off from an earlier projection by UBS, and it will provide around $1.22 billion in product and services revenue next quarter, according to Kim.

The fourth fiscal quarter ending in May is traditionally Oracle’s busiest for the year. Kim projects Oracle will report revenue of $9.61 billion and non-GAAP income of $2.71 billion, or $0.58 per share.

Andy Patrizio is a senior editor at chúng tôi the news service of chúng tôi the network for technology professionals.

2024 Audi Q3 First Drive: Style And Luxury With Tech To Match

2024 Audi Q3 first drive: Style and luxury with tech to match

With its US launch not expected until next year, Audi invited us to the incredibly beautiful Bolzano, Italy to try out the new Q3. Tucked into the Dolomites of North East Italy, its peaks and valleys are good enough for the Italian Alpini, the elite mountain warfare corps, and so they’d be good enough for putting the 2023 Q3 through its paces. That its one of the most beautiful places in Europe only sweetened the deal.

The 120 kilometer drive would take us off the highway and through Wolkenstein in Gröden or Selva di Val Gardena in the Val Gardena in South Tyrol, Northern Italy. It’s a very interesting part of Italy, as it’s autonomous: the majority of the population speaks German, even though it has been part of Italy since the end of World War I. The German-speaking part of the community still identifies as Austrian, indeed, while the food is a wonderful mix of all the local cultures.

Unlike US cars, which will get Audi’s 8-speed automatic transmission, the Euro-spec Q3 we’d been entrusted with had the automaker’s 7-speed S Tronic gearbox, and the quick up and downshifts are precisely what I expected. The US transmission will have a lot to live up to when it arrives at dealerships. Merging onto the highway, the 228 horsepower 2.0T engine effortlessly accelerates compared to the first model, and the hour-long, 50 km drive to our starting point at Bolzano Airport went by quickly.

The highways here were constructed through some incredibly old towns, and the sights are beautiful. Trucks and slower cars would generously stick to the right lane, leaving the Q3 to zip right along at the speed limit. After arriving at the airport, it was time for a stint on the highway at the edge of the city.

While it’s likely to be a frequent stomping ground for American drivers, I can’t say I was disappointed when we turned off the highway towards Wolkenstein. Within a few kilometers, we were in the forest and passing through typical European tunnels on our way to the first stop. The views kept getting better, and so did my impressions of the Q3. Quiet in the cabin, and offering no complaints at our route, it proved just as relaxing when I took over passenger duties and had a chance to explore the new interior design.

Audi took a clean-sheet approach with the new Q3’s exterior and interior, with nothing carried over from the previous model. It’s not been miserly with the technology, either: it may be small, but the 2023 Q3 gets the best of the connectivity options and driver assistance systems that debuted in the new Audi A8. The MMI radio plus a digital instrument cluster is now standard, with the speedometer and tachometer now digital. Sandwiched in-between them is navigation, entertainment, and other vehicle information. Unlike the Audi Virtual Cockpit we’re familiar with, though, this version for the Q3 doesn’t have an adjustable layout.

A second, 8.8-inch screen is found on the center stack, where you interact with the optional MMI navigation plus infotainment system. That features a new – but familiar – flat menu structure, along with natural-language voice control and online route calculation powered by HERE. MMI navigation plus is an option, with the full 12.3-inch Virtual Cockpit display and an all-new 10.25-inch MMI touch display on the center console, mounted at a 10-degree angle so as to better face the driver.

Finally, there’ll be the highest tier, Audi Connect Navigation & Infotainment plus with Google Earth, a hybrid radio, as well as online and onboard dual voice control system. Along with the LTE Advanced and Plus packages comes the myAudi app, which allows many of the vehicle’s functions to be controlled from a distance, and you can also unlock the doors with just your phone. The Audi phone box can both wirelessly charge your phone and boost its cell signal, while the Audi smartphone interface adds Apple CarPlay and Android Auto. Finally, there’s a sweet-sounding Bang & Olufsen 3D Sound System with 15 speakers.

As our first stop loomed, an incredible tree-framed view of the mountains, with a beautiful blue lake that you could see to the bottom of did its best to distract me from my turn behind the wheel again. As we got closer to the town, though, traffic picked up, and it was time to try out the new adaptive cruise control.

Audi pre sense basic, Audi pre sense front, Audi side assist lane-change warning, Audi active lane assist lane-departure warning system, and an adjustable speed limiter are standard. There are also many options including adaptive cruise assist, park assist, cross traffic assist rear, and 360-degree cameras. The adaptive cruise assist incorporates the functions of the adaptive cruise control, traffic jam assist, and active lane assist.

In short, the idea is to not only keep you at a safe distance from the vehicle ahead, but make sure you stay in the lane, too. A button at the top of the cruise control stalk allows you to set the maximum speed based on the speed limit automatically, or you can manually override that with the normal up and down motion. On the highway sections I set the speed limit and distance limits, kept both hands on the wheel, but let the Q3 do the rest. After you come to a complete stop, the Q3 will accelerate again automatically.

While there’ll be an array of engines offered worldwide, including diesels, I was able to confirm the two engine options for North America. In the US there’ll be the 2023 Q3 quattro with a 2.0-liter turbocharged four-cylinder delivering 184 horsepower and 236 lb-ft of torque; it’ll do 0-60 mph in 7.4 seconds. The second version will be the 2023 Q3 quattro S Line, with 228 horsepower and 258 lb-ft of torque, enough to cut the 0-60 time to 6.3 seconds. quattro all-wheel drive will be standard, along with the 8-Speed automatic transmission.

There’ll be Standard, Sport, and an optional damping suspension system, which relies on sensors continuously measuring the Q3’s body movements. The dampers then adjust to the road conditions and driving situation. The amount of damping can be configured via Drive Select, which is where you find various driving modes, like Dynamic and Comfort.

At the front, the Q3 features Audi’s new Singleframe grille with its striking, oversized octagonal design. The frame is wide and the slats are vertical, and it’s flanked with the standard LED headlights. Matrix LED headlights will be available as an option, at least in Europe. The extended roof-edge spoiler gives the illusion of the Q3 being much longer, while the sharply-angled D pillars and the crisp shoulder-lines – bulging with the classic quattro blisters – really add to the aggressive look. The intricate headlights and taillights have become the signature of all new Audi models, and the Q3 is no different. The body lines wrapping each have been specifically designed to call attention to the lights, adding to the Q3’s visual identity in the process.

It’s a bigger car all round than the first model, now 14.7 ft long (+3.8 in), 6.1 ft (+ 0.7 in) wide, and 5.2 ft high (+0.2 in). An extra 3-inches in the wheelbase, now 8.8 ft long, is directly beneficial to the interior space. There, depending on the position of the rear seats and backrests, the luggage compartment capacity is between 530 (+250 liters from the previous generation) and up to 1,525 liters with the seats down. The rear seats can also slide by 5.9-inches, and their 40:20:40 split backrests can be tilted to seven positions.

In the trunk, the loading floor can be adjusted at up to three levels, while the parcel shelf can be stowed underneath the floor if not needed. The electric tailgate can also be opened and closed with a kicking motion for hands-free access. Much of this we’ve seen before on the Q5 and Q7 SUVs, but they’re welcome additions to a more affordable model.

Effective Adwords Remarketing Tactics For The Advanced Advertiser

One area I have seen a lot of success with lately is remarketing. Google has improved their remarketing features tremendously over the last year. Today, I will share the most successful remarketing tactics I’ve found in various AdWords accounts throughout the years.

Remarketing is not as simple as starting regular AdWords Search or Display campaigns. The success of your remarketing campaigns eventually depends on how well you’ve set up your remarketing lists and how you’ve tagged your website.

I won’t go too much into detail with tagging your website, but if you don’t have your tag installed yet, I recommend reading the basics first.

This doesn’t mean if you receive few visitors (less than 10,000 per month), you shouldn’t do remarketing. However, with few visitors your success criteria shouldn’t be direct response, but instead be focused on touching prospects again and again with your ad message. With fewer visitors, your costs from your remarketing campaigns will be limited. Therefore, running your campaigns with no conversions shouldn’t pose a challenge.

Currently, Google offers 3 ways to do remarketing:

Remarketing Lists for Search (RLSA)

Dynamic Display Remarketing

Display Remarketing

Remarketing Lists for Search

Remarketing Lists for Search (RLSA) is Google’s remarketing tool. It allows you to target people who have previously been on your site directly in their search results.

One of the easiest ways to get started with RLSA campaigns is to take your 10-20 highest performing ad groups and copy them into a new campaign. In your new campaign, you set up your remarketing audience as needed and set the same audience as negative in your existing campaigns.

That’s essentially all it takes to get started with RLSA campaigns. For more details I recommend reading my fellow SEJ contributor Tyler Jordan’s post on RLSA campaigns.

What are the benefits of remarketing? 

Target more generic keywords

Bid higher than in your regular campaigns

Offer special incentives for repeat purchasers

Target Generic Keywords

With normal search campaigns, you only have the ability to decipher the intent behind a search by looking at the keywords used. You therefore need to use highly specific keywords to assure that you achieve a profitable ROI instead of just pouring money down a black hole.

With RLSA campaigns, you get a second parameter to use – The fact that customers have been on your website before and therefore are more likely to make a purchase. Where you previously would have only targeted keywords like ‘large cotton bath towels’ because your store specializes in these towels, you can now try out generic search terms like:

Bath towels

Buy towels

Cheap towels

Seeing that the person searching for these phrases has already been to your site and shown interest in your products, these keywords all of a sudden become relevant. It is important to know is that customers don’t always follow a linear search pattern.

Customers will sometimes start off with a broad search, then a specific search and later try a broad search again. Let me provide you with an example of a search pattern:

Best bath towels for kids

Bath towels with hoods

Cheapest towels

Cotton bath towels with hoods

Disney hooded bath towel = Conversion!

However, with the intent behind the search now clear, you are able to open the gates to this keyword and others keywords you previously turned down.

Bid Higher Than In Your Regular Campaigns

Knowing a customer has been to your site before and chose to search further for one of your products is a big sign that they are continuously interested in the product line that you are offering. However, even though customers visit and navigate, it does not guarantee they will make a purchase. There can be several reasons why a searcher chooses not purchase from you right away.

A common scenario is that a searcher just wants to see what else is out there. If they see your ad on top during their follow-up searches, the likelihood of them eventually choosing you is higher.

Another scenario is that the searcher might have not find exactly what he was looking for on your site due to infrastructure problems. Web users have low attention spans, so if someone didn’t find what they was looking for quickly, he might just try to search on Google instead. By targeting all your products with RLSA campaigns in the top two position, you will be able to redirect that person back to your site.

Therefore, in many cases, you are able to bid significantly higher in your RLSA campaigns than your traditional search campaigns.

Offer Special Incentives For Repeat Purchasers

I recommend that you do the same with RLSA campaigns. Don’t just assume that your current ad message is the best, but instead focus on evolving your ad message and allow repeat users to see the entire spectrum of benefits.

Dynamic Remarketing Using Product Listing Ads

Dynamic Remarketing is the latest feature from Google in the world of remarketing. Dynamic Remarketing uses your Google Shopping feed to show specific products to users who have previously visited those products on your website.

The best practices for Dynamic Remarketing is the same as regular remarketing:

Bid higher the further down the funnel a user is

Remember frequency capping

Start with broader segments, but remember to segment

Dynamic Remarketing is definitely one of the most promising features I’ve seen from Google lately, and I’ve seen surprisingly good results from running the campaigns in several industries.

Advanced Strategies for Display Remarketing Success

You might think that regular display remarketing has become obsolete with the addition of Dynamic Remarketing, but traditional remarketing still lives strong. Remarketing is an exceptional way to extend your reach to motivated users who have already shown interest in you.

Split Up Your Remarketing for Different Groups

Segmenting your remarketing targeting in different groups is one of the most best way to improve your performance. Don’t treat all customers the same. You can set clear layers of commitment to determine how aggressive you should remarket to each segment.

All Visits (Excluding the rest of the segments)

Category Visits

Product Visits

Abandoned Shopping Carts


With these 5 segments, you will be able to see a clear difference in CTR and conversion rates starting with high conversion rates for ‘Abandoned Shopping Carts’ to low conversion rates for ‘All Visits’.

Match Your Cookie Time To Your Specific Customer Behavior

If you sell a small gadget that customers decide whether to purchase or not within a day, don’t set a 365-day membership duration for your remarketing lists.

Make sure that your membership duration matches your common buying funnel.

Don’t Forget Frequency Capping

Have you ever been followed by the same ad from the same company all day, every day? I have. A lot. You know what? It doesn’t work. Yelling at me more doesn’t make me like you better.

Change Ad Message For Non-Converting Users After Time

If your Free Shipping benefit hasn’t convinced your customer by day 10, it probably won’t convince them on day 20. Consider changing your benefit or include a specific offer and you will possibly experience greater results.

Remarket To Your Converted Customers

If you sell a product like fashion or other products that can be sold year round, it’s tough to decide exactly when you need to start retargeting to existing customers. If you have a clear season or if your products have an expiration date, you will be able to retarget very efficiently.

Are you planning an upgrade to a certain item in 6 months? Retarget.

Do your wallets tend to get worn out after 12 months? Retarget 50% off for repeat customers after 12 months.

Do you sell swimwear? Increase your membership duration so it covers until the next season and bid aggressively.

Focus On Other Conversions Than Direct Response

However, what if you could convert 10 or 20% into your email nurturing process or sell a product with lower value to get the customers email?

Consider other options when doing remarketing and you will see your opportunities open significantly.

Consider Including Calls As Part of Your Remarketing KPIs

A technique I tested throughout the last part of 2013 was to focus on calls as part of my KPIs for lead generation remarketing campaigns. I saw a lot of the people who didn’t convert on a traditional lead capture form saw amazing conversion rates once I changed the landing page to one focusing on generating calls instead.

We also split-tested the original landing page to see if the performance increase was simply due to our prospects wanting to have a number to call, but the conversions stayed the same.

With a remarketing campaign following up with an ad message like ‘Get A Rep On The Phone Within Two Minutes – Call Now’, I have been able to increase the overall lead generation from AdWords by a healthy amount in several accounts.

Should I Count View-Through Conversions?

I don’t use them.

Know that Your Regular Search/Display Campaigns Are Also Remarketing Efforts

With Remarketing for Search, Dynamic Remarketing, and Regular Remarketing you will tend to see lower CPAs than you see with your regular Search and Display campaigns.

As you start RLSA campaigns, you might even see an increase in your cost per conversion for your regular search campaigns. I’ve seen time and time again that clients either want to or choose to allocate more budget towards remarketing with little knowledge of the eco-system.

Align your expectations across the board and know that if your overall campaigns are performing well for you, then there is no reason why you should lower your traditional search budget.

2009: The Year Ahead For Ppc And Google Adwords

Proven PPC Profit = Increased PPC Spend Spending on PPC Versus SEO

But the counter-question is: what percentage of those sales PPC ‘stole’ credit for would you lose without PPC? Brad Geddes wrote a good case study on this recently, and his point is: don’t focus only on what you’d have without PPC; note the sales PPC brings in that you would have lost otherwise.

While we’re at it, email list building, email marketing, and website/landing page conversion optimization are essential to a complete online marketing mix. This coverage of the whole online sales cycle will make you a stronger business.

Mismanagement: The Biggest PPC Obstacle in 2009

I think the biggest problem we have with AdWords is that too many AdWords accounts are mismanaged. The result of that is:

Disillusionment with PPC,

Skepticism about its effectiveness,

Belief that it can’t produce positive ROI,

Theorizing Google is trying to fleece AdWords customers, and finally,

There are certainly niches and offerings that are unfavorable for PPC success. But I’ve seen and taken over so many poorly run AdWords accounts that I know a large percentage of them are mismanaged.

What’s the solution? In my opinion, Google needs to take an active role in helping to educate their customers. They do a good job of getting people to try AdWords, but possibly too good! By making it seem simpler than it is and by not pushing education about conversion tracking and ROI, they ensure negative bottom line results, negative opinions about AdWords, and this could endanger their business model long-term.

These companies might be blameless to a degree, since it’s not obvious until you evaluate your results three to six months later that AdWords is quite complicated and requires special expertise and experience. And political problems can ensue from having to move your PPC management from an internal resource to an external one. The solution might be better training, but most of the AdWords training on the internet is not professionally oriented. Most of the AdWords information I’ve seen is partial, or focused on arbitrage, PPC as for affiliates, etc.

I’m astounded sometimes by what’s going on out there. For example, a marketer untrained in PPC called me. He had spent almost five figures on AdWords for a client, and had not yet installed conversion tracking (even though Google was helping him with his AdWords launch), and was worried about the lack of results. That meant he spent almost $10k ineffectively AND had not collected the conversion-related data that would help him optimize to spend more effectively. You can’t optimize without conversion tracking. So I spent an hour phone coaching him through setting up the tracking basics that should have been in place before spending even a few hundred dollars. It wasn’t his fault- no one told him how critical that was.

Brian Carter is the Director of Search Engine Marketing for Fuel Interactive, an interactive marketing agency in Myrtle Beach, South Carolina. He is responsible for the SEO, PPC, SMM, and ORM programs at Fuel and its partner traditional agency Brandon Advertising & PR.

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