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Holy crap Google actually did something useful. While they’ve been trashing their local results, removing data from Google Analytics, and generally making life difficult for small businesses who want to rank for competitive keywords while staying current with Google’s ever changing guidelines, they’ve been polishing their Adwords system to make things more accessible than ever (funny how that works out).
The latest update comes from a new form of tracking they’ve rolled out that lets you import offline conversions back into Adwords.
How does this Adwords Conversion Import work?
Google Adwords has always let you see how your individual ads are performing based on the number of clicks you’re getting. Once you have that information, you can go into Google Analytics and find out how many of these clicks are converting into leads. Then…well I hope you’re writing everything down, because whether you track your closed sales is up to you (unless you know someone who tracks paid advertising).
The new Adwords Conversion Import lets you tag every click you get on your ads so once you follow through on the lead, you can track who called, whether a deal was closed, and how much money the deal was worth. You can set up as many offline conversion types as you need — qualified leads, closed sales, etc. — and track and optimize for each step along your sales cycle. If you’re particularly industrious, you can even segment them out by new customer vs. existing customer and pretty much any way you want to spin it.
If you’re interested, you can read more about the specifics here.
Pretty cool, huh?
Say you own a small HVAC company near a major city. You’re being beaten out in the search rankings by your competitors, who are doing all kinds of crazy link schemes and other fancy things to rank. You’re not popping up in the local search at all because your address is outside the city center and you haven’t done any local SEO. Now you’re considering two options: invest in some high quality content marketing services and at the same time sign up for pay-per-click advertising. Since you’re pretty new to the whole online marketing game, you’re not exactly sure yet how to find a top online marketing company that won’t cost you an arm and a leg, so you decide to do it yourself.
Your first ads start popping up on Google and getting clicks. Slowly but surely, you’re generating new business and it’s great. But it’s still not enough – now you want to find out which of your strategies are generating the most revenue.
See, Google advertising isn’t like the Yellow Page advertising of old, where your ads were just…there. There was no real way to measure your success with them, so it was extremely difficult to measure ROI from them. With Adwords Conversion Import, you can now see exactly where your money is going and, of course, how much is coming back.
Is the Adwords Conversion Import tool enough?
If your only online marketing strategy is PPC advertising, then Google’s new Adwords Conversion Import tool is probably just what you need. If you’re a little bit computer savvy you can figure out how to use it in an afternoon or so and go from there.
Here’s the thing though – it only works for tracking paid ads. Studies have shown time and time again that many people have what’s called “ad blindness”, ignoring paid listings in favor of the top three organic ads (why do you think Google keeps making color around the ads lighter and lighter?). In fact, as many as 94 percent of Google searchers click the free listings! Paid advertising is great and will help you generate lot of business, but it’s only one part of the equation.
Success in the online marketing arena is about more than ranking in one area of the search results page – it’s about maximizing your online real estate to capture as many clicks as possible. The Google search results page is filled with opportunities to rank:
- Paid ads
- Organic search
- Map listings
- Product listings
- The local carousel
- The local 7-pack
And that’s not even counting social media like Facebook, Twitter, and Google+! Think of it like this: Every listing you have on the search results is like a customer walking up to your window. Clicking through is them walking in the door. If you only have one sign up and you’re located in a sketchy alley with, like, cats jumping out of trash cans and scaring people and stuff….well, you get it.
What I’m trying to say is, if you’re trying to run a well-rounded online marketing campaign, Adwords simply cannot be the only strategy you’re using. Unfortunately, at this time Google doesn’t offer easy end-to-end tracking for organic searches to let you measure the ROI from your content marketing efforts (and don’t expect them to – in all likelihood they’re going to make it harder and harder to see your data).
But I know someone who does…
Tracking is, and always has been, our bread and butter here at Blue Corona. And we offer much more than just Adwords tracking. Our Marketing Analytics services include:
We could even track billboards if you really wanted.
We even offer custom research and analysis of your website so you can view exactly which of your online marketing efforts generate the most offline success. Our Analytics services have helped some of our clients slash literally hundreds of thousands of dollars from their marketing budgets, while out PPC and SEO services help their bottom line continue to grow.
Our goal at Blue Corona is simple: to help you measure every aspect of your marketing, online and off. Not only do we track your web traffic and leads via Google Analytics, but we also use a proprietary software to track your phone calls…seriously!
These days, trying to navigate the world of online marketing successfully without really knowing what you’re doing is as difficult as trying to install a Carrier Infinity® Series Heat Pump With Greenspeed™ Intelligence by opening the box and reading the French side of the instruction manual – it’s certainly possible, but, well, good luck!
Just like I would be better off calling an HVAC company, you’re probably better off calling us at 301.591.9397. Or clicking here to contact us. Or filling out that box to the right. Or putting your website into that little box down there. Seriously, there’s a million ways you can get in touch with us. I hear Lexie even responds to smoke signals:
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About The Author: Blue Corona is a data-driven online marketing company with offices in Gaithersburg, MD and Charlotte, N.C.
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