Bringing Home the Bacon – Yahoo Search Marketing

Three tips to muster, monitor and maintain your conversions

In the offline world, a “conversion” could happen in the metric system, the adoption of a new religion or an exchange of currency. But for search marketing advertisers, a conversion is a completed transaction event on a website. Apart from the most obvious conversion—a customer completes a sale—conversions can include a visitor registering at your site, requesting a price quote, or participating in some other lead-generating activity.

The battle to improve your conversion rates should never truly end. Let us arm you with the following three tips.

Optimizing your Landing Page
First impressions count, and your landing page is the first web page a user will see after clicking your ad. So don’t be generic or confusing. Whenever possible, we recommend using a “deep link” to a specific product on your site as your landing page. Tips for good landing pages include:
• Offer multiple ways for customers to contact you.
• Make sure that your online shopping engine and shopping cart, if applicable, are safe and easy to use.
• Maintain good server availability and remove any broken links from your site.

Try to see your web site through the eyes of your visitor. If it’s too confusing and messy, users may get turned off by the bad experience and leave your site. So, keep it clean and clear. Other tips include:
• Create an obvious pathway to the product or service the customer was looking for.
• Avoid too many navigation layers between the landing page and what the user is looking for—they should be two clicks away at most.
• If a sale is your primary objective, move any non-commercial content or information “below the fold” (on the lower part of the page).

Track Your Results
Tracking the performance of your online marketing will help you analyze your results and make adjustments, if needed. Our free conversion-only analytics tool is designed to show you how many conversions result from clicks on specific ads. By turning it on in your account, you can learn which ads work and which may need a little TLC. Some of the other benefits of conversion-only analytics include:
• You can track conversion data at the account, campaign, ad group and keyword levels.
• As you learn which keywords drive the most conversions, you can make informed decisions about your account, including how to allocate your budget and how to improve under-performing ads.
• Decisions like these can help you optimize the overall performance of your account, and ultimately drive more sales.

The Help Center features more information on how to use conversion-only analytics.

Optimizing your landing page, using clear and clean site navigation and tracking your results can go a long way toward achieving your conversion goals. And it’s really not that hard to keep these tips in mind and use. With just a little maintenance, hindsight and monitoring, you can more consistently turn your web site visitors into actual customers.

— Roger Park, Manager, Marketing Communications, Yahoo SM