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Web Search & Marketing Newsletter - November 2017

Welcome to the latest issue of our monthly newsletter which focuses on news, tips and advice for effective website marketing, with particular attention on Google and best practice search engine marketing techniques, plus current trends in the market.

In our first article this month we take a look at Google's recent changes to the AdWords daily budget settings and how the spend can now be up to twice the average daily budget, without exceeding the calculated total budget for the month.

We also look at how Google is aiming to create better user experiences by reducing delays in website landing page load speeds from clicks on AdWords ads with URL tracking, by rolling out parallel tracking later this year. This feature should be of interest to AdWords managers and businesses who use third-party providers, as necessary changes to tracking platforms could take several months to complete.

In the final article this month we examine Google's Project Beacon For local search marketing, which harnesses the technology of mobile search to help support local businesses in attracting potential customers to their location.

You can read more below, or you can also browse through previous editions of the newsletter, either by month or by subject. You can also follow us on Facebook, Google+ or LinkedIn, as well as our occasional updates on Twitter.

On to this month's edition...

 

Google's Changes to AdWords Daily Budgets

The AdWords daily budget is calculated by Google over a month-long billing cycle, based on 30.4 days. Due to the daily fluctuations in traffic and online searches Google has changed the way that the budget can be spent, starting from last month. Campaigns can now spend up to twice the average daily budget to help try and reach advertising goals, such as a target amount of clicks and conversions.

This so called 'overdelivery' will be balanced out by Google over that 30.4 day calculation period. It states that it won't charge more than the calculated monthly spending limit, but if it does then it'll credit the extra amount. To elaborate further on that process, 30.4 is the average number of days in a month (365 days in a year / 12 months = 30.417) so Google multiplies an advetiser's daily budget by this number so it knows what the budget should be over the course of a month.

For example, if the daily budget is set at $5, over the course of the month the daily charges will vary. Some days the charge would be $2, on others $10. But at the end of the month, the charges wouldn't exceed $152 (which is 30.4 multiplied by the $5 budget). So even though campaign costs rose above and fell below the $5 budget from day to day, at the end of the month the charge should still be no more than the calculated monthly budget.

If Google does deliver over the monthly budget it's possible to check if overdelivery credits have been processed, by following these steps:

1. Sign in to the (new version) AdWords account.
2. Click the reporting icon in the upper right corner of your account.
3. Select Predefined, then Basic from the drop-down menu.
4. Click Overdelivery.
5. To calculate overdelivery, subtract 'Billed cost' from 'Served cost'.

This change by Google should help businesses that tend to have large fluctuations in traffic during various periods during a month by ensuring that the quota of clicks for the available monthly budget will be reached and there will be the maximum amount of traffic going to the site.

If you want to know more about how this 'overdelivery' could benefit your business, contact us now for more details.

 

Quicker Landing Page Loading With Parallel Tracking

It will soon be posible to get visitors to a landing page from AdWords faster with parallel tracking. As technology enables more assistive experiences, consumer expectations for seamless web experiences are now higher than ever before. In fact, a one second delay in mobile page load can decrease conversions up to 20%.

When someone clicks an AdWords advert with URL tracking, this can cause a delay that prevents them from reaching a website for hundreds of milliseconds. While this may not sound like much, this lost time can impact campaign performance and so to avoid these delays - and create better user experiences - Google announced last month that it will begin to roll out parallel tracking later this year.

With parallel tracking, users will head immediately to the landing page after clicking an ad while the browser processes URL tracking requests in the background. Google has seen this change help users on slower networks reach landing pages up to several seconds faster. When more visitors can reach and engage with a site more quickly, this can help reduce wasted ad spend and increase conversions for a business.

Parallel tracking will finish rolling out to all AdWords accounts in early 2018, so it's important that the next steps are taken asap. If a third-party provider is used for tracking, it's necessary to contact them as soon as possible to make sure clicks will continue to be measured with parallel tracking. Providers will need to make changes to their platform that could take several months to complete, so it's important to get started early. Google is also working closely with key providers to help make the transition as easy as possible for all advertisers.

You can learn about how to prepare for parallel tracking here, or if you want more information about how it could impact your business, contact us now.

 

Project Beacon For Local Search Marketing

Google has been offering a pilot program to some companies over the past few months, called Project Beacon. It's a way of harnessing the technology of mobile search and to help support local businesses in attracting potential customers to their location.

Project Beacon is a new test program whereby Google will send 'beacons' to businesses with a physical location to make their site more visible to customers with mobile devices. These beacons are small transmitters that send one-way signals that are read by customers' phones. This location information can then be used across a wide range of services on mobile phones.

Beacons help mobile devices determine a user's location more accurately. As a result, when a user's smartphone has a better understanding of their location, participating companies can unlock a wide range of new features, and set up their business to use location-related features across Google, such as:

The features available to a business will depend on the number of users that visit the location, as well as visit durations, size of venue, and other factors. The data shown in Google's products is based on anonymous, aggregated visit statistics so that it's not possible to tie a particular visit back to an individual and Google follows industry best practices to ensure the privacy of individual users.

At present the Project Beacon pilot is available to selected businesses in the US and UK and there is no cost currently being charged. In order to take part in the trial, businesses must first receive (or request) a beacon from Google.

If you'd like to know more about this trial program and how it might help your local business marketing, please get in touch.

 

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