>What You Need To Know About Search Engines
In this article, I will try as much as possible all that you need to know about search engines. So, whether you are a content writer or just an ordinary user, I will keep you abreast of all the information that you need to know. Just relax and make sure that you read this article to the very end. Different search engines provide access to different audiences and user types e.g. Yahoo! users might be older or Bing users might use a specific type of mobile phone (e.g. Microsoft phones) as the default search engine is set to Bing.
This also varies in different locations, so your territorial targeting could influence which search engines to include in your media mix.
When you want your articles to rank, you need to think like your reader. You have to write with your audience in mind. You must write based on how you feel they will ask their question. Always start with your consumer and look at their consumer behaviour/purchase decision cycle. Here are some of what is going on in the mind of your readers when they are visiting the search engine page:
#1 Identify a need or want
Before your audience visit a website, they already have a need. In order to ensure that your website comes up when your customers comes to search engine to satisfy a need, you need to make sure that you always write your article as if you are trying to answer a question. It is very important.
#2 Search for solutions
After your customers have identified a need, they will have to come online in order to look for a solution to their problem. Most times, when customers are looking for solutions. They will have to ask a question. The problem here is that most of the people that are using a search engine to look for the solution will never go beyond the first page in their search. That is why you have to ensure that your article dominates the first page on the search engine result page. Please note that immediately your article presents itself, a prospect will try to establish contact with the organisation.
#3 Evaluate Alternatives
Once you have identified organisations that can provide the services that you need, the next thing is to look at other ways that your issues can be resolve. Also, it is expected that your solution provider will provide you with multiple options for you to choose from. You now have to choose the one that seemed best for you. At this stage too, it is expected that they will tell you the pros and cons of all the options that they have presented to you.
#4 Decide to purchase
after the options have been presented, you need to now choose the date that you are going to make a purchase. At this stage, the responsibility of following up on the prospect will now be handed over to the sales department of the organisation. It is the duty of the sales department to make the transaction happen at the end of the day. It is also at this stage that the organisation supposed to reinforce some of the benefits that the prospect will derive from the transaction.
After the prospect has made a commitment to purchase the product, he now has to move to the stage of actual purchase. at this stage, the organisation has to make sure that all products are delivered up to expectation. They have to make sure that the product is delivered at the right place and at the right time. Doing this will boost the trust that the customer will have in the organisation.
#6 Post-purchase evaluation
After the customer might have purchased the product and use the product, he needs to do an evaluation. The evaluation will allow the customer to know whether the product has achieved its purpose or not. This will also allow both parties to make the necessary adjustments if the product has failed to achieve its goal in one way or the other.
Also, Search behaviour features in stages 2-6 of the purchase cycle make it a highly effective channel to tie in with naturalized purchase decision making.
In addition, PPC began in the early 2000s as search engines became popular and as user habits, technology and business developed online. New features have been added to enrich the advertising formats but ultimately paid search consists of keywords, landing pages, and ad copy, and this has never changed.
Over the years new features and more advanced targeting options have been added to develop the AdWords suite beyond paid search ads. Now advertisers can run display, video, shopping and email ads through one advertising platform.
Reasons to use paid search include:
- Meet & align with business objectives: bringing active consumers to your site
- Quick access to market: you can appear in the search results after just a few hours
- Mobile position #1: the PPC ad is the first search result users see on a mobile
- Additional advertising features: target specific locations and add ad extensions
- Tracking: link to Google Analytics and monitor spend, and ROI on KPIs
- Easily updated special offers/time-sensitive promotions: changes to copy are almost instant
- Leverage buyer/search intent: consumers are actively looking for your keywords/product
- Compete in the marketplace: stay up to speed with your competitors
- Fill gaps in organic optimization: quickly add keywords that don’t rank in the organic channel
The benefits of using pay-per-click advertising are:
One of the very first thing about Google Ads is that your article will only show up where it is important. If you use the right keyword, your article will only show up to customers who are ready to buy. This will increase the conversion rate for your products. It will also ensure that you get ROI on your investment.
When you are bidding for a particular keyword and your ads continue to run, you can be sure that your like will always show up anytime someone search for that particular keyword. Bidding for a particular keyword ensures that your product always shows up anytime that customers have to make a buying decision.
#3 Qualified nature of the visitor
When you are bidding for a particular keyword with Google ads, you can be sure that you are dealing with an active customer. Most times, when a keyword or a link shows up and it is not what I am actually looking for, I may be passive in terms of how I am looking for, If it happens to be the exact product that I am looking for, the tendency that I will buy that product is very high.
With Google ads, you are in absolute control. You have control of over budget, ads and keywords. You can increase or reduce your ads budget, at times, when you post an article and it is ranked on a search engine, you don’t really have power over the article on a search engine but when it comes to Google ads, you can actually pause your ads if you feel that the ads are not performing as expected,
One thing you cannot take away from Google Ads is the level of transparency and accountability that comes with it. You can actually see how many times your articles appeared in a search result and how many clicks you have gathered, In a nutshell, it comes with reports that allow you to decide on whether you should continue with the ads or not. This will allow you to make reasonable decisions on whether to change your keyword or make other adjustments to your campaign.
Even among the illiterates, you will always hear “Ask Google’. Google is very popular. The company commands about 85 percent of searches worldwide. So, if you are using Google Ads, you have to know that you are launching yourself to a wider market. Running your ads in this regards will allow your ads to be seen by as many audiences as possible.
Another importance of Google Ads is that it also you to focus on some metrics and decide on how you have performed based on that metrics. You can measure the number of clicks , calls and messages that you have received. Please note that every ads have goals that they wanted to achieve. These measurements will allow you know if your ads are achieving the desired goals.
Keywords, Landing Pages and Ad Copy are the three fundamental pieces of a PPC campaign. Always consider how these three items relate to each other to ensure your campaign is relevant to searcher intent.
Keywords: Start out by giving Google a list of keywords, which tells Google to serve your ads on the results page when people search for those keywords
Ads: The advertiser writes copy which they believe answers the user’s search query. Ads should be relevant to the associated keywords in terms of their product/service to ultimately drive clicks to the website
Landing Pages: The landing page should be relevant to the keyword and the ad for optimum results.
Keyword lists are the list of word combinations that you would like your ad to show for when a potential customer searches.
How to create keyword lists to drive business objectives:
- Consider creating lists around the type of search intent, i.e. if they’re looking for information (Top of Funnel Searches), consideration (Middle of Funnel) or conversion/sales queries (Bottom of Funnel)
- Having an exhaustive list of keywords that your target audience is likely to search for is essential to building coverage to ensure your brand is visible for the most valuable searches in the user’s buyer journey
- It’s essential to know the function of each keyword and assign budgets to each group of keywords depending on the part they play in a conversion
- Use negative keywords to cut out unwanted searches, i.e. low conversion/high cost, bad brand associations etc.
How to approach writing ads in terms of driving clicks from searchers:
- Relevant: Consider the need state of the searcher and how this can be addressed by your product. What do they want to hear about your product to make your product seem more appealing than the competition based on their need state?
- Attractive: Include keywords in the ad copy to increase perceived relevance in order to drive higher click through rates
- Directional: Consider offers and always include a CTA to direct their action towards your business objectives (conversions) post-click
This is an example of good copy elements to drive action.
- Relevant to New York hotels – 500 hotels in New York NY
- Attractive to book – because you have the Best Price Guarantee
- CTA – the book is the first word of the meta description “Book your hotel in New York NY online”. That is telling you to take any action, to book.
- A landing page is your website. You control this zone and should ensure its closely linked to your ads, keywords, and user intent with directional CTAs to drive towards business objectives
- Good landing pages are related to what the searcher typed into Google, as well as the ad copy which they clicked. This increases the relevance of the search experience. If the relevance level is high, the searcher is more likely to engage with the page content
- If you include CTAs, you can direct the searcher to take action on your website, this can be in the form of buying a product or filling out a contact form
- You should take the entire search experience into account when choosing or designing landing pages for search campaigns
What are the considerations of a good landing page? Consider the search journey. To recap:
- The user has a need
- They look for solutions online
- They click your ad as it’s closely aligned to their need
- Next, they land on your website
The questions for landing pages are:
- Does your landing page deliver on the promise of the ad and resolve their need state?
- Is it aligned to the ad, i.e. relevant, attractive and directional?
For example, in the slide image, we can see a landing page that contains:
A.Product details to entice the searcher and quickly show how the product fits their needs
B.Details of how the product appeals to the searcher’s persona and motivations
C.A large clickable CTA to drive action
D.Appealing and aspirational imagery to quickly infer outcomes
The elements above can be distilled into what is known as conversion rate optimization. Conversion rate optimization is a process whereby pages are designed to drive as many valuable actions based on how people interact with the page and what they are likely to do. This includes device optimization where buttons are large on mobile-optimized sites so users can easily click them or use striking colours to highlight a particular area of the page (CTAs). It’s important to identify high impact improvements and device considerations to drive better performance.
- On mobile, the PPC ad is the first listing a searcher sees on the SERP
- Searcher behaviour is different on mobile than on desktop devices. Mobile Navigation has to be simple and easy to manage with larger CTAs and readable font sizes for smaller screens
- A further consideration is the type of traffic that mobile drives; if it is primarily researching traffic and not converting traffic (as is the case with many mobile websites), serving the right kind of content to give mobile searchers the information they require is the most effective way to drive value in your mobile traffic
- AdWords takes into consideration how mobile-optimized your website is, i.e. is it responsive and designed with mobile in mind? This will ultimately affect your quality score for mobile traffic.
I know you might agree with some of the points that I have raised in this article. You might not agree with some of the issues raised. Let me know your views about the topic discussed. We will appreciate it if you can drop your comment. Thanks in anticipation.
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