Managing paid search campaigns can be very involved, and depending on the scope of product and budget available. As a result, it is important to perform regular reviews, and even more as the accounts increase in size and complexity. The larger the accounts get, the more important it is to apply a consistent methodology to this audit activity. Recently I wrote a guest post titles Quick and Dirty SEM Account Audit Basics for Search Engine People covering a few of the basics that any good audit should cover.
As a general rule, and reasonably large account should be audited at least once a quarter. Ideally account auditing should be an ongoing process undertaken along side promotional activity and account expansion. Depending on the keyword coverage and level of activity, this can be a daunting task, and can quickly turning into an overwhelming one without a structured strategic approach.
Read the full version of Quick and Dirty SEM Account Audit Basics at Search Engine People.
While there are a number of different web analytics packages available on the market, from free (piwik.com) to more costly (Omniture and Adobe’s marketing cloud) Google Analytics seems to dominate the market by both being free and very well known. My post “Get Complete Traffic And Conversion Insight With Google Analytics Custom Reports” on Search Engine People has a brief look at a number of ways to create custom reports to take your analysis further.
For a free tool, Google Analytics is excessively flexible. It provides fairly robust tracking for websites and mobile apps, can be customised to support cross domain tracking, events, goals and custom variables, and comes with a pretty good set of default reports. Google Analytics provides reporting and supports data based decision making for countless businesses and professionals. Given how many use cases Google Analytics has to cover, it should not be too surprising that the default reports are often just “pretty good” and not “perfect”.
Read the full article on Search Engine People here.
Decision making are a popular topic for business, and the Observe–Orient–Decide–Act (OODA) loop is one of the more popular models for explaining the decision cycle. Recently I wrote a brief guest post for Search Engine People outlining how to apply this model to the current online marketing environment.
Linking the information generated by your activity to insights and ultimately on to something actionable is critical to getting the most out of your activity. There are many models for processing information and generating insights for different purposes, from linking activity to business outcomes to channel specific performance and optimisation.
Recently I wrote a guest post for the blog, Search Engine People called 13 Excellent Examples Of Google Analytics UTM Tagging You Can Use Too. It covered a few common use cases for using UTM to improve tracking across different channels and activities.
Tracking URLs and parameters is one way around this problem. Making it possible to attribute traffic originating from outside of a browser, such as clicks from a mail client, or ensuring referring traffic is attributed to paid or promotional activity. As Urchin Tracking Module (UTM) tagging is used by Google Analytics ( URL Builder ), it is the most popular example.
Good tracking isn’t just about what the technologies involved can do and where they can be employed. Just as critical to the success or otherwise of any attribution frame work is how it is executed internally, accounting for factors like clear documentation, processes that make sense from a business perspective and are a part of the normal campaign workflow.