How Do SEO and Google AdWords Work Together?

BILL REYNOLDS | July 18, 2018

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Putting together a Google AdWords campaign, a question you need to ask yourself is: have you looked at your SEO? SEO (search engine optimization) impacts your ranking and visibility in the search engine for key terms. SEO also affects your Google AdWords performance. Here’s how that works. When you use a search engine like Google to look up a key term or phrase, Google uses its proprietary search algorithms to return the best results. The results are shown on the SERP (search engine results page). This is key to understand. Google shows the best results in the most relevant order. Think of how frustrating it would be to search for one term and see results on a completely different topic. It’s like putting a business in your GPS and the first result is in another state. Nobody likes that. So why would your AdWord spend work different? Let’s look at how Google “helps” with that.

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HZDG is an independent, fully integrated creative agency specializing in branding, advertising, and digital. For nearly three decades, the firm has delivered high-impact solutions integrated within all brand touchpoints. Led by Chief Creative Officer and President Karen Zuckerman, HZDG employs staff of 175-plus visionary individuals working in offices in New York City, Bay Area, Baltimore, and DC in addition to the agency’s Rockville, MD headquarters.

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How to adjust your PPC strategy during the Covid-19 pandemic

Article | April 2, 2020

The COVID-19 outbreak continues to impact the world like never before. Businesses have been hit hard, institutions have been shut down, and people are being made to stay indoors in an effort to slow down the spread of novel Coronavirus. Nearly all businesses have been dealing with a lot of difficulties right now and the world of PPC advertising is no exception. As the world grapples with the pandemic unfolding in real-time, they turn to online searches and news to find answers to their questions. This extreme change in people’s behavior has also impacted the change in their online search behavior. While some industries were well prepared for this shift, many are not. Table of Contents Has Covid-19 affected your PPC accounts? Impact of COVID-19 on PPC advertising - Industries with increased performance - Industries with mixed performance - Industries hit the hardest Ways to adjust your PPC according to the new search volumes Has COVID-19 affected your PPC accounts? As of today, the COVID-19 related searches are ranking the most on Google, beating other searches related to news, weather, politics, Google, Facebook, and Amazon. To help track these emerging searches along with other breakout searches that users are looking at, Google has released the Google Trends Coronavirus Hub to offer more insights. For some advertisers, these new searches have drawn more visitors to their sites, bringing in new customers. For others, however, the results have not been so great. Wordstream notes that Google search ad impressions have declined by 7% over the last week, which is not uncommon during the holidays. But advertisers certainly weren’t expecting it to happen all so suddenly. Conversion rates have dropped by an average of 21% since the COVID-19 became an epidemic. Advertisers who acknowledge these changes need to be able to adjust their PPC strategies to keep their businesses agile during these uncertain times. Learn more: Teesside web advertising firm makes journey into glasgow Impact of COVID-19 on PPC advertising Google trends shows that the COVID-19 is on top of mind for most people, especially in the early morning and late at night. Many of us who aren’t fighting the pandemic head-on, often look to some other distractions online or try to carry on with our days as usual. Advertisers can review these searches and prepare to adjust their campaigns to avoid wasting their spend online. Industries with increased performance Healthcare and medical Ever since the outbreak, most of us have turned to search to protect ourselves and the community. In the wake of social distancing and a worldwide lockdown, we’re relying on Google SERP to purchase over-the-counter as well as vital medications. As a result, medical advertisers are seeing a strong spike in their sale of pharmaceuticals and medical supplies with increased ad clicks and higher conversion rates than usual. Non-profit and charity The non-profit organization is another sector that’s having a dramatically increased impact due to the COVID-19 outbreak. Charities, non-profits, and social enterprises are working the hardest to help communities fight the COVID-19 crisis. Since the epidemic, this sector has seen • A 10% surge in search ad impressions • A 23% surge in search ad conversions • A 20% surge in search ad conversion rates Luckily, Google’s ad grants program is working with more than 35,000 organizations to help non-profit use AdWords. Live-streaming and on-demand media The phrase, “Netflix and chill”, “Quarantine and chill”, couldn’t be more true and relatable right now. With people practicing social distancing at their homes, we’re consuming more entertainment than ever. This has led to a spike in the entertainment advertisers’ conversion rates, bringing in more viewers. Safe to say it’s not a bad time for the entertainment industry, as the demand for live-streaming media has skyrocketed and seen a dramatic hike in its conversion since the last few weeks. Learn more: How COVID-19 Has Impacted Google Ads Results for 21 Industries Industries with mixed performance Real Estate According to Wordstream, there’s no significant change in the search volumes or conversion rates in the industry yet. But there could be some shifts down the road. Consumers are more hesitant in attending open houses and more reliant on professional agents to schedule an appointment instead. Despite the +15% CPC increase in real estate listings and real estate agent searches in the last month, there has been a -25% decline in the conversion rates. Agents and brokers, however, have seen a 30% increase. Moving and relocation services have seen an 11% increase in search volume, maintaining a stable CTR, CPR, and CPR. Both property development and construction industries are seeing a decline in their conversion rates by -53% and -7%, as well as lower search volumes. This could lead up to a decline in real estate supply in the future. Automotive The automotive industry appears to have taken a hit. It has shown a noticeable decline of 30% in the industry with average conversion rates over the past few weeks. Although this can’t all be due to the pandemic, advertisers are seeing a lot of shifts in searchers’ preferences in the automotive market. Job and education There has been an increased demand in e-learning and training due to schools and colleges being shut down for at least a couple of weeks. Given the college application rush over and the upcoming SAT in June (yet to be canceled), prospective students’ behavior on the SERP remain the same. There’s also an increase in paid search traffic for new career opportunities and vocational training since the last couple of weeks. Industries that have been hit the hardest Travel and tourism It’s not at all surprising to see that fewer people are booking for travel these days. With business, consumers, and government avoiding unnecessary travels, advertisers are finding it hard to convert new searches on their sites. Searches for flight cancellations, delays and restrictions are also at an all-time high, leaving ads more exposed to curious searchers. To address this problem, advertisers should: • Add new negatives keywords for COVID-19, advisory, and cancellation related searches. • Promote cheaper fares and easy cancellations and adjustments for future travel. • Suggest travel insurance to your customers to ease concerns while increasing your average sale price. Live entertainment Search volumes for live entertainment have also reduced by 24%, with a dip in conversion rates by 30%. The need for public safety and social distancing has caused consumers as well as performers to cancel their live shows all across the globe. Ways to adjust your PPC strategy according to the new search volumes Unprecedented times call for unprecedented solutions. Here are some of the ways that you can adjust your PPC strategies according to the rising challenges: It’s important to understand what traffic your ads are getting and add new negative keywords add new negative keywords quickly to prevent your campaigns from reaching irrelevant panicked searchers. • Closely follow COVID-19 related searches to understand how people are searching online. Leverage Google Trends to see what’s trending the most. The Google Trend Coronavirus Hub is a great place for advertisers to find out users’ priorities and search interests in response to the changing news. • The flipside to users spending more time online is that you can easily find them while they’re browsing the web. Consider remarketing to your previous customers and website visitors, bring them back to your site and keep your brand in their minds. This way they will be more likely to convert. Conclusion While times are uncertain at the moment, it is important to keep a positive mindset and be safe. Make sure to stay in the lookout for any new disruptions caused by the COVID-19 and keep adjusting your PPC campaigns consistently.

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WHAT YOU NEED TO KNOW ABOUT PROGRAMMATIC ADVERTISING

Article | February 12, 2020

We know that one of the biggest obstacles to the development and maintenance of strong digital publishing is time; since content and relationship development is critical to success, learning how to use programmatic advertising to make your paid efforts more efficient can be a good idea. Programmatic advertising has become an important skill set for all online advertisers and publishers. We always promote the use of relationship-building content via blogs, websites and social profiles to convert consumers. Programmatic ad buying isn’t a tool to create community and trust, but it is a door by which new consumers can enter your community. Think of programmatic advertising as a cost-effective way of sending invitations to your brand party. You can’t have the party without sending the invites, but once the guests arrive, you must do the work to keep them entertained and comfortable.

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Microsoft Advertising expands UI redesign to more pages

Article | March 30, 2020

Microsoft Advertising unveiled the new look for its web interface in October. A select number of advertisers have had access to the new look for the past few months. Now those users will see the new look on more pages, including Manager accounts. The redesign preview now includes search terms, change history, reports, dimensions and more, the company announced Monday. The new UI, like the Google Ads redesign a couple of years ago, is aimed at helping advertisers access and act on information faster. For agencies and brands managing multiple accounts using a Manager account, the Manager Account Overview page will be the new default landing page in the new look.To start, it features four “insights tiles,” as shown in the screenshot above: Performance, Top changes: Accounts, Accounts and Devices.

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Google updates its ads policy for inappropriate content to include ‘public health emergency’

Article | March 31, 2020

Amid the COVID-19 pandemic, Google Ads has updated its Inappropriate content policy. The updates take aim at keywords around sensitive events, price gouging and more. The update, released Tuesday and effective immediately, does not specifically mention coronavirus, but the change is clearly aimed at preventing advertisers from trying to capitalize on the outbreak. Google banned ads for face masks earlier this month. Why we care. Digital platforms have struggled to stay ahead of misinformation and fraudulent claims as well as price gauging by advertisers trying to take advantage of the coronavirus crisis. This policy update may appear subtle, but it gives Google a clearer path to take action against bad actors and prevent advertisers from advertising on coronavirus-related keywords during this pandemic.

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Spotlight

HZDG

HZDG is an independent, fully integrated creative agency specializing in branding, advertising, and digital. For nearly three decades, the firm has delivered high-impact solutions integrated within all brand touchpoints. Led by Chief Creative Officer and President Karen Zuckerman, HZDG employs staff of 175-plus visionary individuals working in offices in New York City, Bay Area, Baltimore, and DC in addition to the agency’s Rockville, MD headquarters.

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