A Little Too Little a Little Too Late…ComScore was Sorta Right

By Michelle Greer.

As Andy and Alan have both pointed out both here and here, Google squashed the hype behind comScore’s reports of tepid Google click-through rates for Q1 2008. ComScore’s defense? Their report was for domestic click-through rates only. Considering 30-50% of traffic to U.S. based websites is from overseas, this was a lot of fuss over what has become fairly useless data.

The damage was done though. Analysts used comScore’s figures to show that Google was not bulletproof against recession. Some even speculated that Google was dead.

comScore tried to assuage the press and investors alike by pointing out that Google’s efforts to reduce accidental clicks would pay off by increasing an ad’s effectiveness and therefore cost-per-click. Efficient Frontier’s figures from their Q1 2008 search engine performance report support this conclusion. According to the report:

Get off Twitter, Lay Off the Blogs, and Put Some Thought Back Into Your Email Campaigns

By Michelle Greer.

Email marketing reportYou’ve created a company newsletter because it’s part of the “business plan”. Every month or so, you take a look at the deliverability and click-through rates. You know people actually open them. You also know your email marketing campaign needs work. It’s just not as exhilarating as building your Twitter following or creating that Colbert Fan Club on Ning.

Although email marketing isn’t often associated with Web 2.0, 3.0, or 12.0, people still actively open, read and act upon information from emails. According to a study done by MailerMailer, people open emails just as frequently as they did before the social web, and sometimes more often in certain industries.

How can you be sure that your emails aren’t just headed to the trash bin?

Throwing Up Online Ads to See Which Ones Will Stick? Not For Long

By Michelle Greer.

33% of consumer time is spent online, and yet internet advertising only accounts for 7% of advertising spending. Unfortunately, these users often have the attention span of a three month old golden retriever when it comes to online advertising. Advertisers have to think smarter to capitalize on this untapped market.

How are ad networks making sure that ads actually connect to the products and services they want to buy? Here are just a few highlights from the Rubicon Project’s report “Q1: Ad Network Landscape, Trends and Outlook”:

  • Ad networks are shifting to cost-per-action and cost-per-engagement model rather than charging for impressions.
  • Behavioral targeting methods are being deployed, which can modify what ads show up based on previous click and browsing behavior.

Attention Website Owners: If You Aren’t on Google’s First Page, You’re Dead to Us

Needle in a HaystackBy Michelle Greer.

You can have the most attractive website of all your competitors. You can hire usability experts, professional photographers, and the greatest PHP developers money can buy. If you aren’t on the first page of Google, you might as well be from Mars. Sorry.

Why? It’s not that we don’t value what you have to offer. It’s that we, the search engine using public, are too hard-pressed for time and/or lazy to bother to look for you. According to a study done by iProspect, 49% of us change our search terms and/or search engine after not finding our desired result on the first page. This compares with 40% in 2007, 42% in 2005 and just 28% in 2004. Only 8% of us actually bother going past the third page.