I’m a big fan of SEOMOZ. They’re masters of SEO! They’re also very generous with their knowledge, often giving away tons of valuable advice on their blog.
Although almost all of their information relates to SEO, every now and then they post information about Pay Per Click (PPC) – and given how difficult it is to run effective (i.e., profitable) PPC campaigns, these posts are always welcome.
Their most recent post is just such an example and is quite interesting. They look at Bing’s recent addition of Quality Scores, which as anyone who’s familiar with Google Adwords knows can be, um…how do I put this gently…interesting to deal with.
To see what, if any, impact these new scores would have on campaign performance, SEOMOZ decided to change some campaigns from broad match the phrase match and measure the effects. The results are pretty surprising.
They found that simply changing the match type from broad match to phrase match instantly increased the quality scores from 5′s to 9′s and 10′s. That’s a pretty big jump, just from changing the match type.
Ok, that’s interesting, but is it useful? As you know, here at Spring Metrics we care about results! Fortunately, our friends at SEOMOZ also results-obsesses, so they looked at whether the change resulted in measurable differences on Clickthroughs, Cost Per Click, etc.
For their first test, they got the following results:
Holy cow! Those are some awfully big changes and seem hard to believe. And I’m not the only one that has a hard time believing these numbers. As the author noted:
CTR jumped dramatically, average position improved, CPC improved, and CPA dropped like a rock (except that when the rock landed on the client’s head, it turned out to be a wad of cash).
Honestly, I didn’t believe it. In the interest of total transparency, the client had undergone a major offline advertising push, and I figured this was simply lucky timing. So, I tried it again.
What did test #2 show?
Although not as dramatic as the first test, these changes are still really impressive. Improving position and clicks while reducing costs seems like a dream come true.
So what are we to do with this info? Although I don’t dispute the test results, I think more data is required. In the coming weeks, we’ll implement similar changes to some of our own campaigns and see if we get similar results.
I would encourage you to think about this and consider running your own tests. Or perhaps you’re not running campaigns on Bing at the moment – if that’s the case, maybe this is a good enough reason to start running a few.
In either case, I encourage you to read the full post on SEOMOZ and let us know what you think. If you do run some tests, let us know what you find.
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