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Sunday, March 09, 2008

3 Important PPC Advertising Changes

While I've been offline with family, some important PPC advertising changes have taken place. Normally, I'd write a separate post about these, but for now I'll highlight the changes and add some brief commentary:
  1. Yahoo! Search Marketing Blog: Reserve Prices (Minimum bids no longer fixed at $.10 for Sponsored Search)
    This is a bad move on Yahoo's part. Note the harsh comments from Yahoo customers. They shouldn't be copying Google. Instead, they should be working to differentiate their product from AdWords. By adopting a similar minimum bid policy, they are failing to do so.
  2. Inside AdWords: Landing page load time will soon be incorporated into Quality Score
    A strategy of designing and testing landing pages for dialup users might be worth adopting. Note that landing pages don't have to be in the normal navigation of a site that's designed for broadband users. This change will likely force advertisers to create very custom landing pages. That's not a bad thing.
  3. Inside AdWords: Category Exclusion for the Content Network
    I tend to focus more on search advertising than content advertising. This change to the AdWords site exclusion tool actually includes a significant change to the search network as well as the content network. More on this below...
In the past, I've mentioned a hack for blocking parked domains on the AdWords search network. That hack's no longer necessary. Note this AdWords help page regarding page types than can be blocked using the new site exclusion tool:
Parked domains are sites in Google's AdSense for domains network. Users are brought to parked domain sites when they enter the URL of an undeveloped webpage into a browser's address bar. There, they'll see ads relevant to the terminology in the URL they entered. The AdSense for domains network is encompassed by both the content network and the search network. If you exclude this page type, you'll exclude all parked domain sites, including the ones on the search network.
This is a topic worthy of a full post. The impact could be significant, both for PPC advertisers and domainers. In the meantime, I'll leave you with this quote from David Utter of Web Pro News:
Now that they have the feature available, Google really hopes advertisers won't use it heavily. The blog post cited points where the company feels category exclusion will be overkill...
We don't think too many advertisers will buy these arguments, as category exclusion has been a hotly-requested feature.
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