As a Google Local Guide, I review every place I visit and every place I eat. With over 300 reviews and photos uploaded to Google, I am just one of many who are helping Google index local businesses, build reviews and improve the accuracy of Google Maps.
Google does not pay me for these services, but I do receive special Google branded products and other perks for being a Google Local Guide.
Here’s what I’ve found out as I travel my local area.
Reviews really do matter.
People actually look at the photos I post for about a business.
Negative reviews mean I probably won’t visit.
I am constantly evaluating my store or restaurant experience.
If I receive poor service, I will write about it.
Even for lower end restaurants food presentation is important.
People actually read what I post about a business.
I do not tell business owners I am reviewing them.
I myself select who I trade with based on online reviews.
Reviews are more important than a nice website.
The bottom-line is that you are on display and being rated with every phone call, every visit, every plate that is served. You may have the best website, but if your visitors do not receive the royal treatment when they call or visit, you’ll set yourself up for a negative review. Get several and they can damage your business and sales!
To help you fuller understand the new terminology in your Dashboard report and the changes that Google has made to drop the Average Position metric, here are the definitions of these two new important terms that appear in your reports.
Explanation of Search Top IS (Impression Share)
Search top impression share (IS) is the impressions you’ve received in the top location on the search result page divided by the estimated number of impressions you were eligible to receive in the top location. Use this metric to bid on the top page location.
The top location is anywhere ads appear above the organic search results. Eligibility is based on your current ads’ targeting settings, approval statuses, bids, and quality.
Explanation of Search Abs. (Absolute) Top IS (Impression Share)
“Search absolute top impression share” is the percentage of your Search ad impressions that are shown in the most prominent Search position.
Absolute top impression share = absolute top impressions / total eligible top impressions
What this means for you:
By using two new metrics, Google more clearly details where your ads fall in the competitive auction for first page placement. Google no longer shows when your ads appear underneath the organic search results in position 6-10 or on the second page of search results.
By reviewing these new metrics, you can identify if your bids, budget, and quality score which are used to determine ad rank are high enough to support ads appearing in the positions above the search results either in any position or the very top position.
I listened with interest at the Google Marketing Live 2019 presentation earlier this year to how Google will try to compete head to head with Amazon. Clearly they are afraid they are losing too much market share.
Here’s what I learned at the event:
Google will be making all products shown on its 8 properties shoppable. You will be able to buy items directly from ads on YouTube videos from within the search results and you will be able to choose to buy it through the Google Platform or from the business owner’s website.
Google will be providing customer service when you buy it from them and will allow for simple returns as well as a Google guarantee.
You will be able to use your Google payment profile to pay for merchandise. Additionally, shopping and buying features will soon be appearing in the Google Assistant which appears to have Alexa firmly in its sight.
Google will even be making images found in the image search into shoppable ads. Clearly from this announcement, and very tight integration of selling products into all Google properties, Google does not want to lose out to Amazon on being the premier shopping and buying platform.
So, has it happened so far this year – Google becoming Googazon? Or is this another Google+ fiasco. We’ll just have to wait and see.
We get a chance to check our current Google Ads strategy against your needs.
We get feedback from you on what is trending in your business and in sales so as to rearrange our program if needed.
We get an opportunity to review your budget to keep on track with your marketing plan and revise budgets up or down.
I personally find that when we have regular feedback from the client in regards to how Google Ads is working for them, that performance is better and customer satisfaction with Google pay per click is higher.
My firm manages over $3 million in ad spend for clients in Google Ads yearly. As a result, we see opportunities for improvement in regards to conversion tracking across multiple accounts in diverse industries.
My Tips on Conversion Tracking
Always track website contact forms.
Try to track website phone calls.
Do not change key conversion actions.
Use Position-Based attribution.
Set your cookie for 30 to 60 days.
Add additional conversion actions for promotions.
One of the most important aspects to conversion tracking is to select key conversion actions and to NOT change them in the Google Ads conversion control panel or Google Analytics.
We have recently had several situations where well-meaning marketing staff deleted conversion actions thinking that there would be no harm in doing so, but as a result the smart bidding algorithms in Google Ads were negatively impacted and performance dropped quickly in the account.
I have found that when a customer is changing the conversion actions for promotions and they do not have key conversion actions that are always in the account, bidding algorithms are easily confused and cost per click and cost per conversions will increase, sometimes dramatically.
Assure that if you track website phone calls and email form completions that you always keep these running as conversion actions. Do not move in and out of conversion actions unless you use manual bidding.
Let Smart Bidding Algorithms Do the Heavy Lifting for You
Once you have your conversion action strategy in place, wait to accrue 15 conversions in a 30 day period and then test the use of smart bidding options like maximize conversion or Target CPA bidding for your account.
Make sure to do routine checks at 2 weeks, 30 days, and 60 days to assure that these algorithms are actually delivering results with a cost per conversion that works for your business. Most accounts will benefit from the use of smart bidding based on Google’s machine learning and AI, but not all.