Warning: include_once(/home/iteratem/public_html/new/wp-content/plugins/simple-facebook-connect/sfc.php) [function.include-once]: failed to open stream: Permission denied in /home/iteratem/public_html/new/wp-settings.php on line 197

Warning: include_once() [function.include]: Failed opening '/home/iteratem/public_html/new/wp-content/plugins/simple-facebook-connect/sfc.php' for inclusion (include_path='.:/opt/php52/lib/php') in /home/iteratem/public_html/new/wp-settings.php on line 197

Warning: Cannot modify header information - headers already sent by (output started at /home/iteratem/public_html/new/wp-settings.php:197) in /home/iteratem/public_html/new/wp-content/plugins/wordpress-seo/frontend/class-frontend.php on line 959

Warning: Cannot modify header information - headers already sent by (output started at /home/iteratem/public_html/new/wp-settings.php:197) in /home/iteratem/public_html/new/wp-includes/feed-rss2.php on line 8
http://www.iteratemarketing.com Mon, 22 Sep 2014 14:51:52 +0000 en-US hourly 1 http://wordpress.org/?v=3.6 Google Adwords Releases “Callouts” For Better Ad Engagement (& Better Quality Scores!) http://www.iteratemarketing.com/google-adwords-releases-callouts-for-better-ad-engagement-better-quality-scores/ http://www.iteratemarketing.com/google-adwords-releases-callouts-for-better-ad-engagement-better-quality-scores/#comments Thu, 18 Sep 2014 16:35:18 +0000 Ryan Osman http://www.iteratemarketing.com/?p=1202 A few months ago, Google announced a change in their ad rank algorithm, adding Ad Extensions into the calculation. This means the prettier your ad is (more extensions), the higher

The post Google Adwords Releases “Callouts” For Better Ad Engagement (& Better Quality Scores!) appeared first on .

A few months ago, Google announced a change in their ad rank algorithm, adding Ad Extensions into the calculation. This means the prettier your ad is (more extensions), the higher your ad placement will be (as Google cares for its customers and wants to show them the best, most relevant listings).

[Increased CTR = Better Engagement = Happy Google = High Quality Scores]

I bring this up because earlier this month, Google released a new optional Ad Extension called “Callouts”– which you’ll want to take advantage of if you want to remain competitive!

There are two [3] reasons you’re going to want to add Callouts to your campaigns:

1. To draw more attention to your ads

2. To raise your Quality Scores and get better ad placement (better engagement)

3. The third reason is because they’re ridiculously easy to set up. So take a few minutes to read through this simple guide and you’ll be setting up Callouts in no time!

Check out an example of a Callout Extension;


Nice, right?


More About “Callouts”

Before you consider taking the time to set these up, I’m sure you’re curious what Callouts even are.

Callouts were designed to allow advertisers to highlight core competencies and other relevant offers that will help drive conversions.

To achieve higher CTRs and “searcher satisfaction”, they’re allowing us to add an additional line of text, in addition to the usual two Description Lines, Sitelinks, and Call Extensions (among others). Along with all Ad Extensions, Google will ultimately choose which extensions to show. But as we know, it’s best practice to include all extensions for Google to use at her disposal.

It’s easy to assume Callouts are the same as Sitelinks, however, Callouts are NOT links and simply act as an attention grabber.

As the Google Adwords blog suggests,

The use of callout extensions has meant we’ve been able to let our customers know how much more our hotels have to offer than just rooms. Spas, restaurants and meeting facilities are just a few of the attractive options our hotels have to offer, which may not be seen through a traditional revenue driving campaign. In just one month after implementing callout extensions, we’ve seen a 9% increase in conversion rate.” – James Harrower, Senior Search Manager, Hilton Worldwide

I would suggest thinking about common pain points that your customers regularly run into and exploit it with Callouts. You’ll also want to think about your core competencies and what you offer that your competitors do not. This is your opportunity to stand out, so be unique!

It’s also important to note that you can apply Callouts at the account, campaign or ad group level. I would suggest getting as granular as possible with these and apply them at the campaign or ad group level. Unless you’re running a single campaign with few, similar ad groups, applying callouts at the account level is rather lazy – sorry but it’s the truth.

As I mentioned, setting up Callouts is extremely easy, but I’ve included a quick guide for you anyway. So grab a cup of coffee and sign into your AdWords account, because you should definitely do this right now!

For this example, there is only one search campaign with about 80 ad groups, so we’ll apply the Callouts at the campaign level (I know, I know -  I should apply them at the ad group level, but I’ll get there!).


Guide to Setting Up “Callouts”

Choose the campaign you’d like to apply Callouts to (or the ad group, as this process will be the same). Click on the “Ad Extensions” tab, and from the drop down, click “View”, then “Callout Extensions”.

From here, you’ll see the option to create your first Callout with the big red button titled “+ Extension”.


At this point, you’ll be taken to a new screen that lists your existing Callouts (if this is your first time, it will look like this;


After you click the “New Callout” button, it’s time to create your first Callout. Hopefully, by this point you’ve already researched your website/industry and already have your Callouts written down somewhere.

Go ahead and copy your first Callout, and paste into the text box;



As you can see, AdWords gives us both the option to set specific schedules for the Callouts and to have them mobile preferred. I suggest having at least one mobile preferred Callout at all times, even if your site isn’t optimized for mobile.

I say this because you can have your mobile preferred callout compliment your ads and messaging. For example, if you have a call-to-action in your ad that states “Call Now”, adding a Callout that suggests “24/7 support” will compliment that like chicken and waffles – just kidding but seriously.

Another example would be if you’re running a sale, a Callout along the lines of “Call For Specials” could definitely drive a few extra phone calls.

For my example, I’m not going to create a schedule (allowing it to run at all times), and for this particular Callout, I don’t want it mobile preferred (I have phone optimized copy for my Mobile Callout).

*Keep in mind that our Callouts are limited to 25 characters and AdWords only shows up to four Callouts per ad.

When you’re done adding your Callouts, you’ll see a page that looks like this;



At this point, all you need to do is hit the “save” button and you’ve applied your Callouts. You’re done!

The only thing left to do is wait for the data to accrue and check your reports.


This is a report showing data after only a couple of days of running. Notice the huge spike in CTR with our “Price Match Guarantee” Callout. #Winning


Take Away

As AdWords and paid advertising in general become more competitive, it’s going to be the early adopters of opportunities like this that get the edge and stand out above the rest – generating both more branding opportunities and more conversions.

These opportunities don’t come often, so get your Callouts out there before your competitors leave you in the dust!

The post Google Adwords Releases “Callouts” For Better Ad Engagement (& Better Quality Scores!) appeared first on .

http://www.iteratemarketing.com/google-adwords-releases-callouts-for-better-ad-engagement-better-quality-scores/feed/ 0
Link Prospecting with Google AdWords http://www.iteratemarketing.com/link-prospecting-with-google-adwords/ http://www.iteratemarketing.com/link-prospecting-with-google-adwords/#comments Tue, 16 Sep 2014 16:35:42 +0000 Ryan Michael McDonald http://www.iteratemarketing.com/?p=1188 AdWords is an underutilized treasure trove for link builders. We know about the power of the Google Keyword Planner for new keyword ideas and ballpark search volume estimates but many

The post Link Prospecting with Google AdWords appeared first on .

AdWords is an underutilized treasure trove for link builders. We know about the power of the Google Keyword Planner for new keyword ideas and ballpark search volume estimates but many are unaware of the other tools within Google AdWords that can provide a whole slew of link opportunities. Fortunately, I’ve put together a guide for using four of my favorite AdWords reports and tools for link prospecting.

Your Auction Insights Report

The Auction Insights report is a fantastic tool for discovering your true SERP competitors and analyzing how your ad coverage stacks up against them. It’s also a potential goldmine for discovering companies who serve the same industry as you, but are not direct competitors – the ultimate link prospects.

In diving into these reports, you’ll likely find a list of websites that are your direct competitors, indirect competitors (not selling the same products/services), and irrelevant competitors (companies who aren’t legitimate competition).


Download the report, as shown below, and open it in an Excel doc. Filter out your direct competitors and comb through your list.


Not every report will bear link prospecting fruit, but every once in awhile you’ll find a relevant prospect or ten. Automate the report to send to you on the first day of the month and add it to your link prospecting process.


The Display Planner

Identify potential link partners by searching for your core business topics in the Display Planner. The tool will reveal dozens or hundreds of websites that are opted into Google AdSense and run Google ads on their pages. Many sites that monetize through serving display ads also accept guest posts and/or user-generated content.

Type your company’s main topics and keywords into the “Your customers are interested in” field and you’ll be shown dozens of high traffic volume, high PR websites with quality link metrics.


Select the “Individual Targeting Ideas” tab then Placements, and Sites. Download your report and start prospecting!


Your Display Campaigns

What Display Network placements have you been successful on already? They’re probably located on industry-related websites. They’re definitely not located on your competitors’ websites. They could be the perfect places to distribute content!

Open your desired Display campaign and navigate to the Placements tab to see where your ads have been shown.


Customize your columns to choose the metrics that are important indicators of success and relevance as potential link prospects.


Apply your conversion metrics. Of course, conversions are the go-to indicator for success, but don’t neglect Assisted Conversions, and View-Through Conversions. Assisted Conversions tell you that a placement helped another touchpoint to convert a prospect, and View-Through Conversions tell you about placements where users did not click on your ads, but later converted.


Your Display Remarketing Campaigns

Display Remarketing campaigns may be the best resource in your tool belt for learning about how your customers use the web.  Ideally, you’re running a Display Remarketing campaign with minimal placement / topic / keyword layering to get a true sense of how your target customers use the web. If not, no problem, as you’ll still find relevant websites that your customers visited on their path to conversion.

Open one of your Remarketing campaigns and navigate to the Display Network tab, then Interests & remarketing.



Download and comb through your placement reports and find industry websites to target for guest blogging / contribution. Like the Auction Insights report, this is one you can automate and get directly in your inbox on a daily/weekly/monthly basis.

Link prospecting is hard work. If your company uses Google AdWords, then you’re essentially paying Google for data – you best be using it. Using your Auction Insights report, Display Planner data, Display campaigns and Remarketing campaigns can be a wealth of link prospecting data for savvy link builders.

What AdWords tools and reports do you use for link prospecting? Share in the comments!

The post Link Prospecting with Google AdWords appeared first on .

http://www.iteratemarketing.com/link-prospecting-with-google-adwords/feed/ 0
How To Measure The Performance Of Your PPC Campaigns | See, Think, Do http://www.iteratemarketing.com/how-to-measure-your-ppc-marketing-campaigns-see-think-do/ http://www.iteratemarketing.com/how-to-measure-your-ppc-marketing-campaigns-see-think-do/#comments Fri, 22 Aug 2014 20:22:30 +0000 Ryan Osman http://www.iteratemarketing.com/?p=1097 As an PPC internet marketer, I know that my accounts perform better than what my monthly reports indicate. The problem is that it’s hard to show this performance when the

The post How To Measure The Performance Of Your PPC Campaigns | See, Think, Do appeared first on .

As an PPC internet marketer, I know that my accounts perform better than what my monthly reports indicate. The problem is that it’s hard to show this performance when the classic measurement framework only values the final step in the funnel – the conversion.

But what happened before the conversion?

The Old Framework

From my high school years when I first started specializing in marketing, along with the phrase “Location, Location, Location”, I was always taught the marketing acronym AIDA; Attention, Interest, Desire, Action.

The framework made sense, as the buying cycle used to be a lot more linear (before the webz). We simply couldn’t measure how people found out about the product or how people did research. It wasn’t traceable like it is today with analytics.  Due to this, this information was not valued and not talked about. But all of that has changed with the internet.


Google Analytics Screensho

This vintage framework ignores all of the steps before the final conversion. How did the person hear about the company? How were they able to find them? Did they shop around or buy right away? Did they arrive to your website from multiple sources? All of that information is now available to us, but we’ve been very slow to adapt and make it actionable.

Avinash’s framework addresses the problem by driving the entire sales funnel as opposed to only the bottom half. His framework is broken down into three simple steps; See, Think, Do.

Stage 1 | “See”

People who are in the “See” stage are your customers who would be at the top of the traditional funnel, or perhaps not even in the vortex yet. You can’t call them a customer yet because they’re just now learning that your company or product exists. We’ll call them a prospect.

An example of this would be a teenage girl who, upon her first day of school, notices all of the popular girls wearing this year’s latest fashion trend – “Leg Warmers” (I’m dating myself here).

This girl has never seen leg warmers before, but she knows she wants to be popular and so this gets her mind racing, which moves her into the “Think” stage.

leg warmers for dance wear

How Do We Attack The “See” Stage?

Customers in the “See” stage aren’t going to be actively searching for you, so a paid search campaign isn’t always the best strategy.

Display campaigns and Social PPC are both great ways to get people from the See stage into the “Think” stage. The Google Adwords Display network allows various targeting options (In-Market Segments & Similar Audiences, for example) that allow you to show your ads to a targeted crowd and even segment by purchase intent.


***Sample Display Ad For Our Client “The Peregrine”

Likewise, Facebook would be a another great example for our situation, as our teenager will surely be on social media throughout the day and because we know leg warmers are a hot item this year, we can keep reminding our teen about the trend, at any rate we feel appropriate.

Native ads are another less intrusive way to find new prospects in the See stage. These are appealing because like television commercials, internet users are beginning to get fed up with internet ads and ignoring them – sometimes even using services like Adblock which removes them entirely.

If you’re not familiar, Native Ads differ from regular advertisements in that they appear within the text of the website, and ideally blend in accordingly. These ads are common on websites like Facebook, The Onion, CNN and Yahoo, but can be found all over the web.

Native advertising has taken off in the past year, and there’s a few companies that have exploited this situation, for example Taboola and Outbrain. Both of these services are great at curating content and getting it in front of the most appropriate eyeballs.


***Native Advertisements found on The Onion

To paint a picture, think about the ads you see on your Facebook feed. If you’re anything like me, you occasionally find yourself clicking on random intriguing ads and becoming a fan of something new. When you decide to follow that Facebook page, you’ve moved into the “Think” stage without even realizing it.

When your prospects are in the “See” stage, you shouldn’t even be thinking of making a sale. Your goal should be to get them engaged in what you have to offer – you want to build a relationship. You should be their go-to for information at this stage.

Traffic Increase?

-General Engagement Numbers

-Social Engagement (Likes, Follows)

-% Brand Lift

-Traffic Increase

Stage 2 | “Think”

Prospects in the “Think” stage would like in the middle of the traditional funnel. In our example, the prospect has the teenage dream of being Prom Queen and decides that those leg warmers could help support her image. After school, our teenager gets on her laptop and searches to see how much they cost. She discovers that they’re affordable but has to hurry to practice, so she abruptly closes her computer off and forgets about the leg warmers for a few hours.


Just Shopping Around…

It’s bedtime, and rather than counting sheep, our teen is on her tablet browsing the web. Now that she knows she can afford the product, she’s looking at various styles and the best places to buy them. She finds five different websites that sell the style she likes.

Note: this shopping process did not exist 20 years ago. In our vintage example, the prospect would have likely purchased the warmers at a convenient retail store, likely within a mall, upon first visit. Shopping around simply wouldn’t have been worth it, even for a teenager.

How Do We Attack The “Think” Stage?

Unlike the “See” stage, you now have legitimate prospect that knows about your product or service, and is actively searching for information about it. Notice, I didn’t say they were looking to buy it – there’s a big difference and they aren’t necessarily looking for your product or service, just one that solves their problem, from any supplier.

This is a very important state because it’s now when people are going to be searching the product/service, and forming their impressions based on what they find.

There’s a couple different ways to target those in the “Think” Stage.

The go-to option would be your average Paid Search Campaign – both Adwords and Bing. Search campaigns are great because they’re demand fulfillment which means that somebody is actively looking for something and Search Campaigns give us the opportunity to give it to them.

For our example, we wouldn’t want to target bottom of funnel keywords (ie; “Buy Leg Warmers”), but instead target more informative keywords.

Our teenager doesn’t know exactly what type of leg warmers she wants or even if they’re appropriate for her, so she’ll likely be searching terms like “Leg Warmers Price” or “Leg Warmer Styles”. We also wouldn’t necesarily want to send her to a landing page that is trying to close her, but instead, a landing page that will provide her with the information she’s looking for, and the opportunity to move further into the funnel.


***Sample Search Ad With Google Adwords

Another great way to attack the “Think” stage is with remarketing campaigns, which allows marketers to show ads to users who’ve visited a their website only.  AdWords offers both Display Remarketing and Remarketing Lists For Search Ads, allowing you to target prospects who are familiar with your brand and have already completed actions on your website. Reach out to them, showing them how you can solve their problem.

Depending on the product or service, it may take six months of them following and consuming your content before they trust you enough to give you an email address, credit card information, or anything else. In eCommerce, prospects often bargain shop. Be sure you’re giving them the option to add products to a wish list so they can pick up right where they left off when they come back.

In our Teenage Dream example, both Google Adwords and Facebook Retargeting (try AdRoll) would be effective. Adwords will allow you to remarket on various sites across the web, and we know our teenager will spend a decent amount of time on Facebook, where we can kindly remind her that we stock this year’s most fashionable leg warmers – how could she not click?


Sample White Paper Download

-Newsletter Subscription Sign-Up

-Downloads (White Paper, List, Etc)

-Social Engagement (Likes, Follows, Links to Website)

-Brand Searches & CTR

-Engagement Metrics (Bounce Rates, Page Views, Time On Page)

-Returning vs. New Visits

Stage 3 | “Do”

At this point, your prospect is aware of a need or want, has researched the best options and is ready to buy. This is the step where all of your hard work pays off. If you’ve ignored the “See” and “Think” stage, your prospect may have chosen to go with your competitor, the one that they trust or who’s added more value to their life than you have. It’s really that simple.

The “Do” stage is where Leg Warmer Girl is ready to make her online purchase. She’s decided she wants a few pairs, has researched a few brands, and a single company stands out above the rest. Can you guess which one it was? It’s the one that helped her along through the entire process. Remember, when she first saw leg warmers, she knew nothing about them.


Winning Website

Luckily, the first night she found a website that not only stocked leg warmers, but demonstrated the many styles, applications and different lines of leg warmers as a guide on how to wear them fashionably.

Over the next few days, she was reminded of the many styles and how good they look via various websites (Display Remarketing) and her Facebook feed.

After a few more days, one company stands out above the rest. She returns to the website she knows best and completes an order. After the order, she signs up for the newsletter.

How Do We Attack The “Do” Stage?

If you’ve built enough trust, provided the right information at the right time, and your prospect is ready to buy, you may have earned the sale.

In an ideal world, your prospect will be sold on your product or services and will go directly to your website to convert, but usually isn’t the case.

Paid search campaigns are a great way to handle these prospects in the “Do” stage as it’s the classic “Demand Fulfillment” strategy.  These prospects are ready to buy and are searching for a way to do so.


Bottom of Funnel Search Ad

Another great way to help people in the “Do” stage are Email blasts. If someone has provided you with their email address and their intent, you’ve got it made. Send a targeted email blast about the specific product or service of interest, linking them to a landing page that allows them to convert without even thinking. After all, they’ve already researched and are ready to buy.

What Metrics Should I Look At?




-Phone Calls

-Funnel Analysis


Moving forward

We simply can’t treat all of our customers in the same way, and Avinash’s framework gives us a fresh way to portray this.

Marketers around the globe have been thinking about this for years, and I’m glad Avinash was able to put the pen to the pad and put all of our jumbled thoughts into words.

If you enjoyed this post, be sure to comment and follow us on Facebook. We have an office puppy and post pictures regularly!


The post How To Measure The Performance Of Your PPC Campaigns | See, Think, Do appeared first on .

http://www.iteratemarketing.com/how-to-measure-your-ppc-marketing-campaigns-see-think-do/feed/ 0
Visualizing Inbound Marketing With Gantt Charts http://www.iteratemarketing.com/visualizing-inbound-marketing-with-gantt-charts/ http://www.iteratemarketing.com/visualizing-inbound-marketing-with-gantt-charts/#comments Mon, 18 Aug 2014 18:57:04 +0000 Ryan Michael McDonald http://www.iteratemarketing.com/?p=1086 SEOs and Inbound Marketers are pretty confident about the actions that need to be completed to be successful online. We strategize, we hypothesize, and we develop plans of action to

The post Visualizing Inbound Marketing With Gantt Charts appeared first on .

SEOs and Inbound Marketers are pretty confident about the actions that need to be completed to be successful online. We strategize, we hypothesize, and we develop plans of action to produce success for our businesses and our clients. Where we often get hung up is when a web developer hasn’t finished a page element, or a web designer hasn’t finished those graphics we need, or when the writer hasn’t finished our content piece on time.

How do we organize these tasks, explain the inevitable dependencies and timeframes to project stakeholders, and make sure things get done?  The most effective visual tool we use to create alignment and visualize our progress is Gantt charts.


Image Attribution: Deliverables List, Project Plan Templates by IvanWalsh.com https://www.flickr.com/photos/ivanwalsh/3925008656/in/photostream/  CC BY 2.0

Lists Aren’t Bad, Gantt Charts Are Better

The only thing I love more than lists is checking things off of them. During my darkest days, I create lists unnecessarily for the sole purpose of checking things off. But sometimes lists aren’t the best way to present complex data. Project managers understand this. Inbound marketers understand this.

Between your editorial calendar, on-site and technical SEO projects, outreach, link building, and all the projects in between being handled by multiple stakeholders, lists start to appear long and unwieldy.


Time & Dependencies With Gantt Charts

Gantt charts are a powerful tool for managing the time and dependency aspects of projects. It’s difficult to judge how long tasks will take, but even more difficult to estimate when a dependent task will be started and finished. Gantt charts are critical for estimating timeframes, and when you’re on the hook for deliverables, timeframes are crucial.

For example, we can’t launch a blog contest corresponding to a sponsored event if the blog is producing a 404 error. The contest is dependent on the blog being active and found by potential contestants, and the whole project is time-sensitive due to a real-world event. This “project” involves web development work, a writer, graphic design, and marketing department coordination. Each contributor needs to know what has been done, what’s yet to be completed, and where the project has progressed  in real time.

Inbound Phases & Tasks

We like to break down our initial inbound marketing projects into “phases,” complete with dozens of individual tasks. Phases require high-level strategy and are worked on by multiple team members, complete with brainstorming and meetings. Phases can include on-site SEO work, content strategy and PR/link acquisition. We wouldn’t start PR/link acquisition work if the website had major canonical issues, and we wouldn’t start outreach without first addressing the business’ content strategy. Tasks within these phases can be assigned to and completed by specialized team members. By “chunking” our work into phases, projects, and tasks, we are able to map it out in our minds. Once it’s been entered into our project management system, the mapping becomes real through Gantt charts. Your mileage may vary, and your processes may differ depending on the scope of your work.


Creating A Gantt Chart

There are plenty of tools out there to create Gantt charts. Start with a project management system, and a big whiteboard, laying out all the phases, projects and tasks that will be involved in your engagement. Bucket the minor tasks into projects and the major projects into phases using a whiteboard, a Trello board, Asana, or another visual list-making tool.

We love the functionality of Teamwork.com Gantt charts. We don’t need to work with Excel to manipulate our data. No plotting or graphing necessary. Just one click for a visual representation of the scope of the work. Explore your options. There are tons of startups and products that are producing Gantt chart functionality for project management systems Gantt charts can be used with:

The post Visualizing Inbound Marketing With Gantt Charts appeared first on .

http://www.iteratemarketing.com/visualizing-inbound-marketing-with-gantt-charts/feed/ 0
Content Writing for Businesses: What’s The Ideal Workflow? http://www.iteratemarketing.com/content-marketing-for-businesses-whats-the-ideal-workflow/ http://www.iteratemarketing.com/content-marketing-for-businesses-whats-the-ideal-workflow/#comments Fri, 08 Aug 2014 14:55:49 +0000 Tyler Blackwell http://www.iteratemarketing.com/?p=1068 SDC19331 by Mr Thinktank, CC2.0 Maybe you own a business that operates online. Maybe you work for such a business, and have a fancy title like “Marketing Director,” “Digital Brand

The post Content Writing for Businesses: What’s The Ideal Workflow? appeared first on .

SDC19331 by Mr Thinktank, CC2.0

Maybe you own a business that operates online. Maybe you work for such a business, and have a fancy title like “Marketing Director,” “Digital Brand Manager,” or “Internet Lady.” Or maybe you are just the unlucky employee who gets saddled with managing the website on top of your other responsibilities (see “Internet Lady,” above).

If any of these are you, you have no doubt heard the phrase ‘Content is King.’ Unfortunately, producing great content isn’t nearly as easy as thinking “Gee, I should produce some content.” Whether you want to produce content yourself or pay someone else, you’ll need to have the workflow planned out in advance if you want to succeed!

Content Isn’t King

For starters, let’s put one tired idiom to bed: Content isn’t King. Content is fuel. On its own, a piece of content won’t produce any results at all, just like dousing your body in gasoline won’t make you run much faster. To make content work you need to have an engine (a strong, fully-optimized website with a great sales team behind it) and you’ll need to refuel (publish new content regularly and often).

Your Company

For the best and most knowledgeable writers in your niche, you don’t need to look far! Chances are, you and your employees have more insight into your industry than any agency and a huge library of common questions to answer. The problem, of course, is getting employees and managers with full schedules to find time to write the kind of high-quality blog posts, case studies, and white papers you need. Deadlines get missed, momentum falters, and soon you are back to square one, saying “Gee, I should produce some content.”

Your Agency

Maybe you are paying a digital marketing agency for SEO advice and website help. If so, great! Agencies can be a great resource for market research, content strategy, and editorial calendars. When it actually comes to putting pen to paper, however, you need to ask a few questions:

Is this agency qualified to write for my industry?

Is this the best use of their (often expensive) time?

Is content creation where I want my agency focusing their attention?

If you can answer a confident “Yes” to all three, great! If not, you should sit down with your agency team and work out a streamlined workflow.


With tools like elance.com and zerys.com, it’s becoming easier and easier to find great writers outside of your company to produce your content. At just a few cents per word, you are probably going to save some money over having your agency write in-house, and with a good team established you can produce posts on tight deadlines and with little hassle. However, this is far from a hands-free process. You will still be on the hook for providing topics,  research and direction, editing, posting, and managing the whole schedule from beginning to end. Multiply this process a few times per or week and it becomes less of a time-saver and more of a headache!

The Triforce

So, what’s the ideal workflow for producing great content without wasting time all around? Here at Iterate, we use the following process, which divides the responsibilities and uses the strengths of each party to enhance the whole. I call it (unofficially) the



Triforce by wiredforlego, cc2.0


Your Company: Provides the industry expertise. You provide common questions, technical insight, and you review and approve each piece of content before it goes live.

Your Agency: Provides the strategy and management. These are the flight traffic controllers of the process. They set the schedule in tune with the larger content strategy, communicate with the writers, and, if they are really hands-on, manage the payment and editing for all new content.

Your Writers: Provides the words. They put the pen to the paper and write the content that keeps your engine running. With a strong platform for management and a deep pool of writers to pull from, you can be confident that your content will come out on time and well done.


Do you have a content production horror story? A workflow that works better for you? Tell us in the comments!

The post Content Writing for Businesses: What’s The Ideal Workflow? appeared first on .

http://www.iteratemarketing.com/content-marketing-for-businesses-whats-the-ideal-workflow/feed/ 0
Are You Being Selfish? How To Build Better Website Engagement http://www.iteratemarketing.com/are-you-being-selfish-building-better-website-engagement/ http://www.iteratemarketing.com/are-you-being-selfish-building-better-website-engagement/#comments Fri, 01 Aug 2014 19:51:56 +0000 Ryan Osman http://www.iteratemarketing.com/?p=1032 Last week, the Iterate team got up and out of our office chairs to do some good for our little community. After driving through a quick Oregon rainstorm, we arrived

The post Are You Being Selfish? How To Build Better Website Engagement appeared first on .

Last week, the Iterate team got up and out of our office chairs to do some good for our little community.

After driving through a quick Oregon rainstorm, we arrived at the Oregon Food Bank and “rolled” plums for a few hours (a term we came up with to describe the bagging of frozen plums). We had a lot of fun, expecting little in return but the feeling of fulfillment. I think our hearts grew slightly. It felt great knowing that thousands of families are going to eat and appreciate the food.


The experience got me thinking: all of us want things, but few are willing to “put in” as much as we “want out” of life. The same is true for internet marketing and the many websites I encounter on a daily basis.

We need to switch our thinking from a “Want, Want, Want” mindset to a “Give, Give, Give” mindset if we want our websites to be successful and beat out the competition.


Give, Give, Give!

If you want to be successful online, you must be willing to do what others are not – add value to your visitors’ lives. Stop thinking about your pocket book – think about how you can grow the pocket books of your prospects.

This is especially true today as social sharing has blown up at an exponential rate. People love sharing things they find useful, interesting and engaging. When somebody shares something of value – something truly cool – that person feels elevated, as they’re adding value to other people’s lives.

By providing value to your website viewers, not just product descriptions of feature/benefit pages, but real value that can help your visitor’s lives, your brand can snowball. More people share your website content and your traffic grows exponentially.

When you give something away for free, you build trust with your visitor and the visitor becomes more loyal to you. If your products and services are roughly equivalent to what your competitors sell, this brand loyalty could be the deciding factor on whether a person goes with your or your competition.


Need Some Examples?

Like the Buddha suggests; I question everything I’m told. I want to give you a few examples of successful websites that are adding value to their visitors’ lives and dominating their competition.

1. Optimizely Optimizely

Optimizely is part of an online revolution – and a good one. We know that it’s often better to sell benefits over features, but Optimizely has taken this a step further; they allow you to their product for free. #WinningThis

Yes, free, with no limitations. The landing page is simple and includes a single headline; “A/B testing you’ll actually use” – and they give us the opportunity to test their proposition.

This is an amazing feature that has won over thousands of visitors. Not only do potential buyers get to experience how the service works, they also overcome any usability fears in the process. Goodbye buyer’s remorse.

What is Optimizely giving? A Free Experience.


2. Viperchill

Compared to his competition, Glen from Viperchill does things very differently. The Internet Marketing niche is full of affiliate marketers trying to sell other marketers on the ideas and strategies involved with affiliate marketing.

Understandably, the affiliate marketing industry is full of the same vague, short articles about basic practices, all promoting the same products.

Glen breaks away from this. He writes long, detailed articles that go into detail about how he makes money. He consistently uncovers all of the shenanigans that go on in the industry. This builds an unreal amount of trust.

When Glen writes an article, I know that it will be well thought out, unique, detailed and true. It might even show me a new avenue to make some money.  I

love his case studies because I know he’s not holding anything back, hoping that I’ll pay for something further down the line.

Even more, he goes into detail about his own projects, how he executed and how much money he made. You can’t beat that kind of transparency.

What is Viperchill giving away? Free (and better) content on how to make money – free of the B.S.


3. Optimind 


Fresh out of college, founders Lucas Siegel and Matthew Piskorz are doing things right. They recognized the huge demand for Adderall and other brain enhancing drugs that the many students, entrepreneurs and business execs are taking advantage of every day.

The problem – Adderall is a prescription drug and is illegal without a prescription. Optimind fills a market need by providing an over the counter product that claims to provide the same effects in a safer manner.

Their biggest business hurdle is the competitive nature of the supplement industry. Optimind has outdone their competition and is growing exponentially because they believe in giving!

Not only does Optimind offer a free trial of their product (that’s how much they believe in it), but they also offer a 14 day money-back guarantee on top of that.

I’ve heard the money-back guarantee a million times. The problem – nobody wants to go through the hassle of getting their money back. In most cases, it’s simply not worth the time – the risk remains.


Optimind solves this problem with its free trials – something its competitors are not doing – thus giving them the competitive edge.

What is Optimind giving? The opportunity to experience Optimind first hand, free of risk.


4. Jones Loflin 

With such a small barrier to entry, the keynote speaking industry is a competitive one.

Jones Loflin has a great resume; he is one of the most respected names in the game and has written award winning books, but that alone would never be enough to get the amount of bookings that he receives.

No matter what his “About Us” page tells us or his Call-To-Action button claims, there’s no way people are going to book Jones without learning more about him and getting a sample of his work.

Jones understands this and caters to the (needs) wants of his customers, and gives away a ton of free content to prove his expertise in the industry.

Not only does he provide the necessities (video samples, testimonials, blog content), but he also offers a free whitepaper explaining a few strategies for Maintaining Motivation, something highly relevant to his seminars.

Not only is he giving away his knowledge for free, but he is turning a customer asset into a business asset as well. Each time a person signs up for the whitepaper, Jones is adding an email to his email list to which he can send email blasts later, including more free content mixed in with special offers!

It’s another win/win

What’s Jones Loflin Giving Away? Free content related to his services to build trust.


What Next? 

I’m hoping that at this point, you know how to get better engagement on your website and out-perform your competition.

If you can’t, that’s alright. Here’s what you need to do;

1. Define your “Best” (ideal) customer

2. Research their needs and pain-points

3. Research your competition to see if and how they’re catering to those needs/desires/pain-points

4. Give something away that will benefit your “Best” customer by adding value to their life or solving a problem for them. MAKE THEM LOYAL.

It’s that simple, but it involves doing something that we’re scared of; narrowing our targeting. But you know it, and I know it; you can’t market to everyone or you’re marketing to nobody.

Adding value to your “Best” customer is the best way to add value to your site, as they’re the most likely visitors to convert and they’re the visitors you WANT to convert!


My Question For You

What are some of your favorite websites that add value to your life, without asking for anything in return?



Duh Winning by JuanLazy

Giving Hands and Red Pushpin by Artotum


The post Are You Being Selfish? How To Build Better Website Engagement appeared first on .

http://www.iteratemarketing.com/are-you-being-selfish-building-better-website-engagement/feed/ 0
Linking Google My Business & AdWords Accounts: The How & Why http://www.iteratemarketing.com/linking-google-my-business-adwords-accounts-the-how-why/ http://www.iteratemarketing.com/linking-google-my-business-adwords-accounts-the-how-why/#comments Thu, 24 Jul 2014 21:08:34 +0000 Taylor Phillips http://www.iteratemarketing.com/?p=1014   According to a study recently released by Google, “50% of consumers visit a store within one day of searching for local information on their smartphones.” If you own a

The post Linking Google My Business & AdWords Accounts: The How & Why appeared first on .


According to a study recently released by Google, “50% of consumers visit a store within one day of searching for local information on their smartphones.” If you own a smartphone, you probably fall into this 50% and this doesn’t surprise you in the least bit. Location extension accuracy is now more important than ever before, which is why Google recently enabled the linking of Google My Business Accounts (previously called Google Places) to Google AdWords accounts.


Why the Change?

Before the enabling of this feature, location extensions had to be manually entered and applied to each campaign in your AdWords account. (This could be time consuming and an absolute pain if you had more than a few campaigns.) With this new feature, location extensions are automatically enabled at the account-level & for all campaigns inside of that AdWords account, getting rid of the time-consuming task of copy & pasting. As a business owner, this helps ensure that customers receive the correct information about your business’ locations.

Not only does this new feature save users some time, but these new location extensions also allow for targeting & bid adjustments. For example, if you’re targeting New York City, this new feature allows you to increment your bids by any percentage you wish based off of proximity to your business location.

Have multiple business locations? Not a problem. If you’re advertising locally and want specific locations to show up for specific campaigns or ad groups, you can set up filters. With filters, you can choose which locations go with which campaign or ad groups.

How Do I Make This Change?

  1. If you haven’t already, create a Google My Business Account. (This account is associated with your businesses Google + page.)
  2. Sign into your Google AdWords account.
  3. Click the Ad Extensions tab.
  4. Select View: Location Extensions from the drop-down menu1
  5. Choose “Upgraded” in the drop-down menu next to View: Location Extensions.2
  6. Click +EXTENSION.3
  7. You will then be asked to link your Google My Business account. Click Done.4



You should then see something similar to what you see below:



The linking of these accounts can take up to 24 hours, so don’t stress out if you don’t see them ready to go immediately.


How Do I Filter My Addresses?

Setting up filters enables you to show certain business locations in specific campaigns. Filtering these addresses is done by using the business names or categories that you’ve specified in your Google My Business account.

  1. Click/choose the campaign or ad group you wish to set up filters for.
  2. Click on the Ad Extensions tab.
  3. Select View: Location Extensions from the drop-down menu.6
  4. Choose “Upgraded” in the drop-down menu next to View: Location Extensions.7
  5. Click “Campaign Extension” or “Ad Group Extension” (depending on what level you’d like to filter your addresses to).8
  6. Click +EXTENSION9
  7. Click +Filter, and then choose to filter by either Business Name or Category. Once you’ve entered this information, click Save, and the location you specified will now be showing for that campaign.10


Google’s goal is to upgrade all AdWords accounts over the next few months, so this feature will be mandatory and campaign-level location extensions will be phased out towards the end of this year.


The post Linking Google My Business & AdWords Accounts: The How & Why appeared first on .

http://www.iteratemarketing.com/linking-google-my-business-adwords-accounts-the-how-why/feed/ 0
Advanced Tips For Screaming Frog: SEO for E-Commerce http://www.iteratemarketing.com/advanced-tips-for-screaming-frog-seo-for-e-commerce/ http://www.iteratemarketing.com/advanced-tips-for-screaming-frog-seo-for-e-commerce/#comments Tue, 22 Jul 2014 01:22:32 +0000 Shaheen Adibi http://www.iteratemarketing.com/?p=1000 If you are the owner of a massive e-commerce website, an inbound marketer, or an SEO manager, you probably know how frustrating getting actionable information from a large e-tailing website

The post Advanced Tips For Screaming Frog: SEO for E-Commerce appeared first on .

If you are the owner of a massive e-commerce website, an inbound marketer, or an SEO manager, you probably know how frustrating getting actionable information from a large e-tailing website can be. Backend code can feel inaccessible, and no one wants to deal with the intermediary of designers & developers when money’s on the table or deadlines are looming. Screaming Frog bridges that knowledge gap and lets anyone check to see if a site is optimized for search engines on a technical level.

Crawling large websites in Screaming Frog can present challenges beyond the typical functionality beginners are used to. Though we have already covered the onsite SEO applications of Screaming Frog, the SEO information you can get, and why it matters here. We wanted to create a guide highlighting some of the more advanced features in Screaming Frog that will let you easily crawl 5000+ page sites without errors. Check out the video below:

Although the basics of using Screaming Frog are pretty straightforward, I’ve often found in my work that older sites and those that generate dynamic URLS create the following issues when trying to get a clean crawl:

Over indexing from product review pages, comparison pages, referral pages, or contact us pages
under indexing from network time-outs when crawling.

Crawling: Can’t Stop….Won’t Stop

Over-indexing in this case refers to the fact that Screaming Frog might have already crawled thousands of pages on your site but is still nowhere near finishing. If you are a site owner, and know you only have 6,000 products on your site, this should tip you off to the fact that something is wrong. Typically, the problem is that dynamically generated pages like Product Review questionnaires, Side-by-side comparisons, referral pages, or contact us pages are just multiplying on top off each other. This is the reason why your e-commerce site that only sells 6,000 products supposedly has 30,000 pages. Now there are two solutions to this issue. The first is the optimal solution, while the second is fast but will reduce accuracy tremendously.

Screaming Frog: Exclude

The principal behind exclude is that we block Screaming Frog from crawling any pages we know don’t matter from an SEO perspective and are adding bloat to our crawl. If you go to “Configuration” > “Exclude” you will see this option.

Screen Shot 2014-07-21 at 4.12.02 PM


I would recommend starting and stopping a crawl repeatedly until you have identified any pages in your file architecture that are causing problems. You don’t need to be familiar with regex to make this fix, but essentially adding a *. after the offending files will get rid of the issue.

Limiting URL Crawl Length

This is the fastest solution, but can also be the messiest. What you are doing here is telling Screaming Frog to skip over any URLs that are too long. If you jump down to  “Configuration” > “Spider” > “Limits” > “Limit Max URL Length to Crawl” and set the value to something high, like anything past 115 you might be able to easily eliminate long dynamically generated URLs quickly.

Screen Shot 2014-07-21 at 4.14.17 PM

This is great if you know that most of your page URLs only have 60 characters in them (For example there are four characters in “http”) but if your pages vary drastically this may get rid of useful pages unintentionally. So I would recommend the first strategy.

Why Isn’t Google Showing All My Products?

Now getting ranked number 1 may be the reason why you are asking yourself this question, but it’s important to note that if you have an older site, or an older Sitemap on your website, you may not be getting all the attention from Google that you deserve. In practical terms, this means you’re limiting your audience, traffic, and ultimately, revenue.

Typically, one of the first things I do when digging into a site is use the site: search operator to see how big Google thinks a site is. (You can read more about search operators here.) While this approach isn’t totally perfect, I have encountered situations where I have increased the amount of pages that Google was crawling for a site, and the pages indexed specifically, by updating the sitemap.xml in Webmaster tools. While no one knows the magic behind Google, my theory is that the Google Bots crawl quite quickly, and if your site is unresponsive, on the order of about 10 seconds, you may be getting pages dropped where you wouldn’t want them to be. So my solution for this situation is to use the “Configuration” > “Spider” > “Advanced” > “Response Timeout (secs)” option to increase how long I’m willing to wait for a page load.

Screen Shot 2014-07-21 at 4.24.42 PM

Ultimately, this allows me to get all the pages out of my site that matter. While this is indicative of other issues, either technical or in the server architecture, using Screaming Frog here is a great quick-fix.

The methods depicted in the video, and briefly outlined here, are pretty straightforward and should hopefully keep you from spending too much time waiting for a crawl to finish (that never will). Let us know how your re-crawls go and if you have any questions.

Searching, August 10, 2011 by Maritime Aquarium, http://bit.ly/1rlqfPn, CC BY 2.0

The post Advanced Tips For Screaming Frog: SEO for E-Commerce appeared first on .

http://www.iteratemarketing.com/advanced-tips-for-screaming-frog-seo-for-e-commerce/feed/ 0
Attribution Modeling: Don’t Be A Model Idiot http://www.iteratemarketing.com/attribution-modeling-dont-be-a-model-idiot/ http://www.iteratemarketing.com/attribution-modeling-dont-be-a-model-idiot/#comments Tue, 15 Jul 2014 20:16:58 +0000 Ryan Michael McDonald http://www.iteratemarketing.com/?p=970 We have established over the last few years that Last Click, or Last Touch attribution modeling is dead. Though our marketing platforms haven’t fully caught up to this fact (i.e.

The post Attribution Modeling: Don’t Be A Model Idiot appeared first on .

We have established over the last few years that Last Click, or Last Touch attribution modeling is dead. Though our marketing platforms haven’t fully caught up to this fact (i.e. Google AdWords), analytics platforms have been working towards adapting to this change for several years. Google Analytics now includes attribution modeling with its free service, and you should be using it.

Google Analytics Model Comparison

Last Click Rewards Bottom-of-Funnel Activities
If you’re seeking ROI in your marketing activities, and you judge ROI off of a last click model, you’ll fit only bottom-of-funnel marketing channels into your plans. For many small businesses, this often means paid search, email marketing, and retargeting. Paid search with transactional keywords (i.e. buy blue widgets, Acme Blue Widget X2322) will lead to great pay-per-click ROI. Retargeting users who have been to service pages on your website, or have abandoned a shopping cart will drive impressive conversion rates. Sending promotional emails to interested prospects is an easy win.

Marketing Funnel Highlighting Bottom of Funnel Targeting

Where To Now?

The Small Business Last Click Ceiling
A problem occurs when small businesses get comfortable with these high return-on-investment activities and go looking for more. They expect similar results out of any new marketing initiative. When these classic bottom-of-funnel channels reach scale, there’s nowhere to go that can offer these great (but often low volume) results. No new leads in the pipeline. No increase in Direct visits and sales. No brand recognition or brand loyalty. Any new marketing activity that doesn’t show comparable ROI is a failure. But we know that’s not true. We know Display advertising can work. We know content marketing works. We know brand building is a valuable activity. We just don’t know how valuable these actions are when we use last click models that reward only bottom of funnel activities.

A Big Business Scenario
We consulted with a billion dollar company who was struggling mightily with attribution this year. They sell to businesses, to consumers and to governments. Their sales cycles range from a few days to a few years. Their sales net them a few hundred dollars or multi-million dollar long-term contracts. The ROI of their marketing was, to them, immeasurable. They periodically sent email blasts and measured those results on a last click basis. The emails netted them hundreds of thousands of dollars in a matter of days. That was all the direct feedback they needed to “prove” the value of their other marketing channels. It was a form of validation, but not one that empowered their digital marketing department, or inspired trust from C-level executives.

There’s a better way. With CRM integration, better integration between marketing and sales teams, and reverse-engineering of sales back to leads, this company could develop a rough value for each conversion and micro-conversion. They could switch to a better attribution model that would weigh email blasts and social referrals appropriately for their business. Would it be easy to do? Heck no. Would some assumptions need to be made along the way? Absolutely. The good news is that that’s about as bad a case as it gets.

Attribution Models to Stay Away From
First, let’s talk about some bad attribution models out there. To me, the true Last Click model doesn’t make sense and never has. Even Google Analytics acknowledges this, as their default model is a Last Non-Direct Click model. Direct visits are effects of other marketing channels, branding, and other marketing initiatives. Direct traffic is an effect of marketing, not a marketing channel. It shouldn’t be awarded with any marketing conversion value. I don’t know of any possible case where a Last AdWords Click model makes sense. Why would I give more value to AdWords conversions over other channels? Because I want more budget? That’s not a valid reason.

Attribution Models To Consider
What’s the best attribution model? The short answer is that Linear Models and Time Decay Model work very well for most businesses. The hard news is that it varies from business to business.
That’s a challenging fact for many businesses who want to compare their results to others companies’ results and their own past results. They want to compare what they’re doing to what others are doing. They want to know that they’re not the first – they’re not the guinea pig. Here are some of the tried and true basic attribution modeling options available on Google Analytics:

Last Non-Direct Click – As discussed above, this is the default Google Analytics attribution model. It doesn’t work for every business. If your customers have a short buying cycle, and don’t need a lot of time for consideration, then last non-direct click may work for you. Here’s how to know for sure:

1) Open your Google Analytics account
2) Navigate to the Multi-Channel Funnels section
3) Open the Overview report. Do you see significant overlap between circles?
4) Open your Path Length report. Do more than 10% of your conversions take longer than two interactions?

If you answered yes to both of the above two questions, then last click models will not tell you the whole story of your marketing efforts. If you answered no, then a Last Non-Direct Click model could work just fine.

First Click – Are you an unknown entity or start-up? Do consumers and B2B buyers know about your solution, or do they need significant education to be in the market for your product? If that’s the case, you need to generate brand awareness, and first click attribution allows you to credit the channels that generated that crucial awareness. Of course, this model is just the Last Click model flipped backwards, and it doesn’t acknowledge any other important touch points that contributed to sale. Stay away from it unless brand awareness is your sole performance indicator.

Linear – If you have a long sales process and your buyer needs multiple touches prior to making a purchase (i.e. many B2B environments), then a linear attribution model might make the most sense. This model says that no one touch point is more valuable than any other. Each interaction with your website is given equal value. The voiced argument for this model: Why should one step along the buyer’s journey be weighted more highly than another?

Time Decay – Do promotions, or holidays, or seasonality play a role in your business? Do you have very long lead times? If so, you may want to award specific touch-points along the buying journey with more weight. It’s likely that an Organic click 28 days ago doesn’t deserve the same credit as a Facebook Ad with a promotion that secured a sale on the same day. This model passes the logic test – shouldn’t each channel that moves a prospect closer to a sale deserve more credit than the last?

Position Based Attribution – This is a tricky model. It gives more credit to the first click and last click, and less credit to the visits in between. For many eCommerce companies who sell products comparable to many other competitors, their customers do a lot of comparison shopping and enter and exit from a variety of channels before purchasing. By awarding the first click for generating the awareness of your solution, then ignoring the crazy-shopper-behavior of the middle touch points, and awarding the last click with credit for “closing” the deal, you may be onto something.

Attribution models often suffer from the confirmation bias that produces them. Often, an analyst decides that a particular part of the journey should be more valuable than another, and then produces that outcome by applying a model that fits that perspective. Any model that validates your opinion rather than questions your assumptions should be avoided. If you’re new to attribution modeling, play with a few different models in Google Analtyics to get a sense for the basic models that are out there and what effect they have on your marketing results. Then, come back and tell me what your company went with!

The post Attribution Modeling: Don’t Be A Model Idiot appeared first on .

http://www.iteratemarketing.com/attribution-modeling-dont-be-a-model-idiot/feed/ 0
Google Analytics Alerts You Need Now http://www.iteratemarketing.com/top-5-google-analytics-alerts-you-need-now/ http://www.iteratemarketing.com/top-5-google-analytics-alerts-you-need-now/#comments Tue, 15 Jul 2014 00:09:12 +0000 Brian Chausmer http://www.iteratemarketing.com/?p=979 Google Analytics is the know-all for actionable decisions: if someone comes to your site and behaves in a certain way, it translates their action(s) into a metric — session duration,

The post Google Analytics Alerts You Need Now appeared first on .

Alerts - Top Level - All Six

Google Analytics is the know-all for actionable decisions: if someone comes to your site and behaves in a certain way, it translates their action(s) into a metric — session duration, pages visited, behavior flow–and provides it to you as quantitative data. As advertisers and digital marketing experts, we’re tasked with collecting that data and forming a strategy based on it. But what about those times when you’re not looking?

Maybe it’s after-hours, or your workload has increased and you haven’t had a chance to stare-down your usual metrics, or maybe you never thought to look at month-over-month Direct traffic. For these cases and more, Google Analytics has provided us with Alerts to keep us up-to-date on data irregularities. Below are a few of our favorites Alerts that we use for our clients.

All Traffic Drop

This one is highly contingent on the amount of sessions you average each month, but should find a way to apply it. If you have over 1,000 sessions per month, it’s worth setting up. If you have over 10,000 sessions per month, it’s an absolute must.

Here’s what an All Traffic Drop looks like in action:

All Traffic Drop

The steps are simple: apply a condition to all traffic when you see a dip in sessions. Feel free to play with your Top Dimension (All Traffic) and specify any dimension you want: create a second Alert for pinging you when a certain state or international traffic suddenly sees a large reduction in traffic. More often than not we find this issue if an AdWords campaign has gone down or a tag suddenly goes missing.

Analytics Flatline

If you’re a marketing professional or agency who has someone other than your own web developer making changes and adding tags, this Alert is crucial. Constant upgrades to Analytics, coupled with tag management and third-party code are always a threat to messing up your reporting. This Alert lets you know that if your sessions absolutely tank–90% drop or more–that there’s probably something wrong with the way Analytics is communicating with your website.

Here’s what the Analytics Flatline looks like in action:

Analytics Flatline

I also highly recommend duplicating this same alert and applying it to “Source / Medium” – “google / cpc” and “impressions less than one” on a specific day, if you’re running an AdWords account. There’s a good chance this Alert will show you that your ads were disapproved or your campaign is down for some reason or another.

Direct Traffic Change Spike

Often, email marketing, off-line efforts, social and other online campaigns can become un-tagged as changes and updates are made to your marketing. Email marketing is the biggest culprit–check any lead generation company’s Direct traffic and you’ll probably see very high peaks on the first, middle and last of the month–but offline marketing through print, radio and TV can also show very significant direct traffic spikes. Here’s how to set an Alert so you can ask your client or co-workers about anything they might have forgotten to tag for Analytics, or see if your newest offline campaign is having an effect:
Direct Traffic Change Spike

Self-Referral Traffic

As an Analytics nut in digital marketing, there’s nothing more frustrating than seeing “Domain.com / Referral” pop up in your traffic report, especially when there are conversions and sales being attributed to that source rather than your chosen advertising medium. Because of that, this Alert is set rather aggressively–any time there’s at least one session of traffic reporting from your own domain, you’ll get an email. This allows you to address any on-site tagging issues or see if a third party is getting in the way–conversion forms, SlideShare, etc.

Self Referral

Likewise, if you have a known self-referral issue but it isn’t a problem–it’s calculated into your reporting or you know its source–then you could change this alert’s condition to “% increases by more than” and then a percentage, likely 10-15%.

Google Shopping Feed Down (E-Commerce)

This is an AdWords-specific alert, but if you have a Google Shopping feed, this one’s worth your while. It’s set so that any time your feed has less than one impression on a given day, you’ll receive an alert within 24 hours. With how touch-and-go Google Merchant Center can be, this Alert is the insurance you need to potentially save you or your client thousands of lost dollars in a month or quarter.

Feed Down

What Google Alerts do you find to be “must-haves” for your company or clients?


The post Google Analytics Alerts You Need Now appeared first on .

http://www.iteratemarketing.com/top-5-google-analytics-alerts-you-need-now/feed/ 0