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Paid Search Articles

Yahoo/Microsoft Search Alliance in Cartoon Form
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Microsoft and Yahoo have released a new video illustrating how the two companies intend to create a "powerful new choice in search" with their Search Alliance, due to begin making its way to customers before the end of the year.

There is not much in the way of news about the alliance to come from the video, but it does put its goal into a simple, easy-to-understand 2 minutes without going into all of the specifics.

SearchManager Consolidates Google, Yahoo, Microsoft, & Facebook Ad Campaigns

American Express has launched a new search marketing tool for small businesses via its OPEN forum. The tool, powered by Clickable, is called SearchManager, and lets business owners manage paid search campaigns across Google AdWords, Yahoo Search Marketing, Microsoft adCenter, and Facebook ads from one dashboard.

Does an Organic Search Presence Help Paid Result Performance?
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A study from a couple of NYU Stern professors has found that organic search engine results can play a direct role in whether or not a paid listing is clicked. Basically, if this research is any indication, if your business has both a paid result and an organic result appear at the same time, you have a better chance of your paid result getting clicked than if the organic result had not appeared.

Google Begins “Next Chapter” in Search Advertising
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Update: Google says its new ad formats are "the next chapter in search advertising", and its "AdWords New Ad Formats Initiative" will focus on two themes:

Report: Paid Search Spend Up 10%

SearchIgnite has released a report, which indicates that paid search spending in the United States was flat year-over-year in the third quarter, yet up 10% quarter-over-quarter. This comes largely from multi-channel retailers, who increased paid search spend by 40% in the quarter, according to the firm. This is despite flat conversion rates and average order value.

Yahoo Adds Paid Search Listings to Filtered Results
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Yahoo has given Yahoo Search Marketing advertisers the ability to have their ads shown in filtered searches. When Yahoo launched its new search results pages last month, they added the ability for users to filter results by site. Relevant ads are now appearing with these results.

Geography Not Too Valuable in PPC Bid Management
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A study that the Rimm-Kaufman Group began in early August set out to find out if certain regions and specific zip codes play significant roles in paid search conversions. The thinking was that low-population areas with fewer brick and mortar stores are usually more successful for catalogs, so perhaps the same would be true with paid search.

Yahoo Gives Search Marketers Time-Saving Tips
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Yahoo has decided to drop some knowledge on Yahoo Search Marketing advertisers about a tool it has that it says will speed up their campaign optimization. If you are not familiar with it, it’s called the Bulksheet.

Last Click Attribution Debated At SES San Jose

Warren Buffet may eat a banana right before he buys a yacht, but luxury yacht builders would be making some pretty bad conclusions if they tried to connect the two events.  A session at SES San Jose examined whether or not the practice of last click attribution (which often points to paid search) fails in a similar manner.

Are Local Businesses Trying Hard Enough with Paid Search?
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On Friday, the Interactive Advertising Bureau announced that the US had reached $5.5 billion in online ad revenue for the first quarter. This was down a bit from last year, but that’s not too bad considering the state of the economy. In fact, you’d be hard pressed to find other ways to advertise your business that are as cost-effective.

Paid Search Tips From Microsoft, Facebook, And Others

Companies that have made it this far should feel hopeful about the future; we may finally be coming out of the recession.  Not everything’s back to normal, though – just ask General Motors – and so if you’re in the position of needing to justify the use of paid search (or just wanting to get better at it), a session at SMX Advanced aimed to help.

Bing Algorithm and Advertising Questions Answered
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Microsoft has posted a FAQ page for adCenter advertisers wondering just what Bing has in store for them. One question pertained to Bing’s algorithm, to which Microsoft’s Carolyn Miller responded:

FTC Issues Restraining Order Against Yahoo, MSN
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On behalf of the Federal Trade Commission, a federal court issued a restraining order against Yahoo, MSN, AllTheWeb, and Altavista to prevent the search engines from allowing mortgage finance scammers to use a government URL in sponsored search results, thus representing themselves as the operator of the site.
Mortgage Scammers

Longer Search Queries Hurting PPC Clicks?
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Advertisers using paid search may find that they have to adapt to the habits of searchers. And there have been indications that searchers are using longer queries to find what they are looking for these days.

comScore shares some rather interesting data showing that the number of paid clicks has grown 3 times slower than the total number of queries in the US since January 2007. Look at these graphs:

Paid Search Down, Social Media Up in the UK
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Research from Hitwise indicates that online retailers in the UK are seeing less traffic from paid search efforts and more from social networks. Paid search traffic has fallen over the last year – the percentage of all UK Internet visits to online retailers dropped from 10.1% in March ’08 to 8.9% in March ’09 according to Hitwise’s Robin Goad.

CPC Declines on Big 3 Search Engines, ROI Strong

Average cost-per-click in the US declined last year on the big three search engines according to research from Efficient Frontier. Google’s fell 14%, Yahoo’s fell 16%, and Microsoft’s fell 28% over a year’s time (via CNET). Essentially the study indicates that less money was spent per search ad.

Online Ads Need to Be More Engaging
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A study from McPheters & Company in co-operation with Condé Nast and CBS Vision found that magazines and TV ads are more effective than online ads. The study looked at 30-second TV ads, full-page 4-color magazine ads, and Internet banner ads in standard sizes.

They used eye-tracking software to determine the circumstances for when online ads were actually seen by participants. Highlights of the study include:

Google Shows Paid Search/TV Relationship
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Google has conducted a study looking at how paid search affects TV viewing habits. The results are pretty interesting.

Adam StewartAdam Stewart, Google’s Industry Director for Media & Entertainment tells WebProNews that the research confirms that paid search is an effective way to build traffic for a network’s website and, as a result, increase viewership for content like online video.

Maximize Your Limited Budget for Google AdWords
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When dealing with Google AdWords campaigns, advertisers have several options for selecting keywords. PPC expert and Founder of ClickEquations Craig Danuloff talked with me about when to use each one, and provided some advice about getting the most out of your campaign on a limited budget.

Chris Crum: When should advertisers use Exact Match?

Big Retailers Flunk Search Test
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So, while perusing Google’s Hot Trends today I noticed a particular brand of digital camera was one of the top gainers in search queries: the Polaroid T730 Compact 7mp digital camera. Curious as to what’s so special about it, I googled it, only to embark on one frustrating journey.

Google Ad Clicks Trickle Up In March
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No double-digit click increases for Google again in comScore’s assessment of paid click activity, as the firm found a mild 2.7 percent year over year rise in March.