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Demographic Targeting For PPC Conversions (Contd.)
Author: Kevin Gold
Published: Tuesday, November 09, 2004


Targeting Usage Demographics to Increase Paid Search Conversions

Continued from the previous page, the list of primary search engine usage demographics to consider when developing your PPC strategy are:
  • Relevancy: Paid versus Organic Listings

    Another usage demographic to consider for your PPC strategy is ?perceived relevancy? of paid versus organic listings. Ads perceived as having greater relevancy lead to higher website conversions.

    The iProspect study referenced earlier also discovered that ?Internet users are more likely to click on an organic search link on Google, and a paid search result on MSN.? Organic listings on Yahoo! were considered 61% more relevant than paid listings while AOL was split 50/50.


  • Age: Young versus Adult versus Seniors

    A third usage demographic to review is age. Preferences among the top five search engines are fairly mixed among age groups; Yahoo! is a strong favorite with 18-34 year olds; while MSN and AOL have a stronger preference among the 35-55+ age group. As stated earlier, AskJeeves is favored by teens and adolescents which is growing in their buying power within American households as stated in a recent BusinessWeek research study.

So what does this all mean for your PPC strategy?

First, it is highly recommended to run Google Adwords and Overture campaigns concurrently using keyword-level tracking systems to determine which PPC search engine generates the most cost effective and best converting visitors. Usage data generated from your website is the best market research.

Second, consider your writing style. By understanding the common characteristics of your customers and writing PPC ads best suited to the search engine?s usage demographics, you will increase your probability of connecting with your audience and improving your website conversion. Also make special note that women have a stronger propensity to buy AND a higher 'perceived relevance' for paid listings on MSN Search.

Third, although Google Adwords accesses a larger traffic pool, Overture?s partner network, mainly MSN Search, has the highest perceived relevancy for paid listings and the highest propensity for purchasing. Although counter-intuitive to current conventional thinking, Overture may deliver better ?converting visitors? than Google Adwords.

In closing, a greater focus on the search engines? usage demographics when writing your PPC ads, targeting PPC channels and developing corresponding landing pages will enable your marketing strategy to ultimately achieve stronger financial results for your web business.
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