About Noran El-Shinnawy

Noran is the Director of Marketing at BoostCTR and an Associate Instructor of the Master Certification Conversion Optimization course at MarketMotive.

She specializes in analyzing the PPC customer Journey, creating buyer momentum and optimizing their experience from click to conversion. Her passion for understanding today's customer is a key driver to her analysis of industry trends and keeping up with the latest in PPC, Voice of Customer analytics and Conversion Optimization.

Noran also contributes to industry publications including Search Engine Watch, Visibility Magazine, SES Magazine and ClickZ. She is also a frequent speaker at the Search Engine Strategies conferences, the Internet Marketing Conference, the Online Marketing Summit and Search Marketing Expo.

When she's not online, Noran is either traveling or diving with sharks in the red sea.

PPC Ads: Internal Consistency Strengthens Credibility

What do restaurant bathrooms and PPC ads have in common? Well, it’s a matter of consistency.

To paraphrase the common wisdom, a restaurant’s bathroom is a good indicator of the cleanliness of its kitchen. If they let the bathroom get dirty (what you CAN see) then how bad do they let the kitchen (what you CAN’T see) get?

And in the same manner, if the management and staff have the discipline to keep the rest of the restaurant immaculately clean, it’s probably a good bet that the kitchen is kept the same way….

Facebook 101: Check your Ad Scheduling & Delivery Settings!

Last week, Acquisio sponsored the Facebook Advertising: Testing and Optimization webcast on Search Marketing Now (available on-demand). The very talented Merry Morud from aimClear packed it with tons of tips and tricks but here’s one that really resonated with me:

So simple, yet so true.

Being orginally from Egypt and listing diving as one of my interests on Facebook, it’s no surprise that I’ve been seeing this ad since October:

If you’re advertising tourism to a country that’s going into its 3rd week of political revolution with foreigners being evacutated left and right, I’d say that’s a pretty classic case of setting it and forgetting it. Whether they’re paying on a CPM and not CPC basis, the evil marketer in me clicked and bounced anyway!

I know I’m stating the obvious here. But often times than not, it’s the simplest mistakes that end up costing us the most. If you’ve read this far, do me a favour and pay a quick visit to your ad scheduling and delivery settings tab in Facebook. Figure out if it makes sense for your ads to run continuously, during specific dates, or if you need to pause some of them.

Tax Season Isn’t Over

At least for online marketers engaged in PPC efforts.

They say great minds think alike. So it was no surprise last week when Andrew Goodman and Bryan Eisenberg managed to write nearly identical columns about the Google AdWords “tax”.

So what the heck is this tax and why do we have to pay it?

Andrew calls it the tourist tax, Bryan calls it the simplicity tax. Names aside, all it boils down to is the price you pay for being in a hurry, taking shortcuts, or not asking the “locals.”

Very often, we are lured in by the fact that we can starts showing our ads to the online world in as little as 10 minutes. Pick a bunch of keywords, decide what you want to pay for them, write some ads, and you’re all set. Right? Wrong!

You can read Andrew’s column here and Bryan’s column here. But what I really want you to do today is answer the following:

3 questions to make sure you are not getting taxed

1. Did you need to opt out?

Your AdWords campaigns are opted into the entire Google Network by default. This includes Google search, search partners, and the Display Network. If you’re not optimized for the entire network, running along with the default settings will only hurt you.

2. Did you create keyword groups?

Because of the way this part of the process is set up, people end up creating keyword groups instead of ad groups. You almost have to work this backwards. Instead of creating a list of keywords then grouping them, create themes for your ads, then come up with keywords that fit nice and tight. Do that and you’ll have highly targeted ads with decent CTRs and Quality Scores.

3. Did you bid lazy?

Ad group max CPC bids apply by default if you don’t specify otherwise. Start off by defining what your goals are. Here are a few suggestions:

  • Clicks –> use CPC
  • Visibility & awareness –> use CPM on Display
  • Conversions –> use CPA

It’s perfectly fine to start off in automatic mode until you understand and assign different values to your keywords and ad groups. Switch to manual mode when you’re ready, or go semi-automatic with the bid simulator to see the possible effects of adjusting your bids.

Now What?

Those were just a few of many possible reasons someone can get penalized in AdWords. Make sure you go back into your account and make any necessary adjustments. The last thing we want is to hire PPC Accountants to handle our AdWords taxes.

FREE: 3 Tickets to PPC Training Workshop at OMS

Next week, I will be joining Bryan Eisenberg in a super charged and fun PPC training workshop at the Online Marketing Summit.

The workshop is titled: PPC Optimization: The Road to Recovery and will cover:

  • The 7 most common PPC mistakes to avoid
  • 4 hot metrics you should be monitoring and including in your monthly reports
  • A powerful 3 step process to increase Click-Through-Rates (CTR) and relevancy of your ads and landing pages
  • How to boost your Quality Score rankings and lower CPC costs
  • The simple technique that will make you stand out from your competitors
  • A 12-Step process to optimize and improve your PPC management process

We are giving away 3 FREE TICKETS, one to each of the following cities:

Ready to learn how to take your PPC to the next level? Get in touch and let us know which city you want to attend the workshop in. First-come first-served!

Guess Who Just Hooked Up!

Solving the Marketing Puzzle
Think of your marketing efforts as a rubik cube. You can’t possibly solve the puzzle without being able to see all sides. In your traditional marketing efforts, you cannot unfortunately see all sides. It’s incredibly challenging to try to focus on one aspect, be it your search, analytics or website, without ignoring the others. So how do you look at all sides and solve your marketing puzzle?

Whether you’re an analyst or a HiPPO, you’ve got some sort of reporting to do. The bottom line is: you want to know how well you are performing based on how much you are spending. This goes beyond average metrics like of cost per click or ROAS. Because average metrics yield average results. And average results lead to average decisions.

What we’ve really been missing is a way to seamlessly combine our PPC and Analytics data together to have more meaningful metrics. Sure, Google Adwords and Google Analytics have started playing nice recently. But it’s still not the type of seamless integration you need. And what if you are advertising on search engines other than Google?

The Hook Up
So how do you pull all this data together and make sense of it? You throw them in a tool and let them make love to one another. We usually don’t use our blog to promote our tool. But integrating Google Analytics into Acquisio SEARCH, is well… it’s kind of a big deal!

It’s Kind of a Big Deal
Whether you’re a publisher, run an eCommerce or B2B site, it’s kind of a big deal! You suddenly have this new way of looking at metrics where you can measure almost Anything per Anything. Here are a few sexy PPC and Analytics metrics that can make your reports just a little more provocative.

Sexy Publishing Metrics

  • Cost per Page View
  • Cost per Visit, Visitor, New Visit
  • Cost per Bounce

Sexy eComm Metrics

  • Average Revenue per Item
  • Average Revenue per Transaction
  • Average Value per Goal Completion
  • Average Item Revenue per Click
  • Average Goal Value per Click

Sexy B2B Metrics

  • ROAS per Item Revenue
  • ROAS per Goal Value
  • Bounce Rate per Click
  • Page View Rate per Click
  • Visits, Visitors, New Visits per Click

You can even drill down and get as granular as you need to by measuring cost, rate, revenue and ROAS per campaign, ad group or keyword. The possibilities are endless. And remember: Average metrics yield average results. Are you basing your marketing decisions and spending your dollars on average metrics?

In the next blog post, we will look at an example of how combining PPC and Analytics metrics can help you make better marketing decisions.