Adwords impression share is very useful for demonstrating how much of your target audience you’re covering. As a rule of thumb, impression share (IS) above 80% is usually regarded as good.
Take the following figures from a real Adwords account:
Impression Share: 93%
Lost IS (Rank): 7%
Lost IS (Budget): 0%
Exact Match IS: 100%
There can be a couple of reasons for the Lost IS due to rank; one of which is that the ads are being displayed on a partner site that doesn’t display as many ads as Google’s homepage so effectively the ad drops off the bottom. This is logical.
However, in the above example the advertiser is only distributing their ads on the Google search results page, so it will never be displayed anywhere other than on the Google.com/.fr/co.uk/com.au etc.
A second (and more relevant) reason for the Lost IS (Rank) is that the advertiser is missing opportunities to display ads against long tail terms. Let’s assume that the advertiser above is targeting the term “curly wigs” (phrase match type). They’ve set their CPC bid and daily budget high enough to display an ad to 100% of the people searching for “curly wigs”. But only 93% of the people searching for “curly wigs” plus a modifier e.g. “brown curly wigs” see an ad. This probably means that their website isn’t optimised for all the possible long tail terms (“curly wigs that make me look like Michael Knight just when he gets out of Kitt” anyone?).
The more content they add to their site, the more keywords they target and the more they bid the lower their Lost IS (Rank) will be. But at over 90% I reckon they’ve got the curly wig market pretty well covered!
Image: Glenn Pebley
The guys at website monitoring service Pingdom have done an interesting visual round up of how some of the more successful blogs have evolved over recent years. There are a few trends to note but for me the move to a very crowded masthead stood out. Most of the blogs featured have decided to place a large ‘leaderboard’ style banner ad at the top (or near the top) of the page. I read this as a sign that the attention ads get here is too difficult to ignore when compared to the revenue from other areas on the site. It really reminds me of the huge mastheads we now see on print newspapers.
If you’re planning a blog it might be worth learning from the big guys rather than find out through your own evolution. Although the specifics are clearly relevant for those looking monetize content, the layout lessons must be applicable to corporate, promotional blogs too.
Take a look now: A visual round-up of successful blog evolution
If your site is looking a bit tired and perhaps rather dull, using a few images to break it up is a great idea. Typically, stock images can cost a lot to licence for online use, however a number of websites offer good quality stock images for free.
One of the most well known and a site I have used several times is Stock Exchange. The selection is good and the quality is certainly good enough for most projects especially if you spend a bit of time editing the images for your specific application. Make sure you check the licencing terms of any image you use as sometimes the photographer will require you to tell them where its being used (usually for interest sake more than anything else).
Another great source of images is searching through Creative Commons licenced shots. Flickr’s advanced search provides options towards the bottom of the form, for searching only those images which can be licensed (via Creative Commons) for use on your website.
I’ve just been looking for a decent web based image editor for cropping and scaling images without having to buy desktop software. Well I found Picnik and what a beauty she is! It allows you to do all the basic features of Photoshop with some of the more advanced stuff like filters thrown in for good measure. If you need to scale some images for your website look no further than this excellent free app.
I had to find a solution for a client who wanted to be able to upload news articles to their otherwise static website. Having looked at options like Adobe Contribute and not really seen the benefit, I thought Blogger’s FTP publishing setting must be worth a look. Sure enough, you can customise the template to simply output a list of news articles without all the usual blogger stuff on the page. So you’re really just using Blogger’s interface and article management tools…which as you’d expect from Google are very user friendly. Once you’ve FTP’d the finished pages to your server, you can then either include these lightweight pages in a news page by using a server-side script language like php or asp. If you don’t have access to a scripting language on your server, you can simply use an iframe to embed the content. Slick, free and very quick to set up – winner!
We all know Google is the best search engine available. However, it is an awful lot more too – it even helped me make dinner!
I was cooking the other day (actually I was just preparing the ingredients for Liz to do the cooking!) and I had a recipe which was written in pounds & ounces. All my ingredients were in metric measurements so I did a quick search for a conversion tool…I didn’t need to look far!
Type this into Google: 1lb2oz to g
Amazingly, at the top of the screen you’ll get:
1 pound 2 oz = 510.291416 grams
Pretty amazing huh?!
You can also try it with all sorts of conversions (distances etc) but its also a really powerful calculator too. Just type this into Google:
Obviously firing up your PC to do some simple maths is pretty silly but if the PC’s on it could be pretty handy, esp if you need to concentrate on the cooking!