Friday, September 25, 2009

A Comparison of Paid Search Advertising Models

A Comparison of Paid Search Advertising Models

Copyright (c) 2006-2009 Bill Platt

As webmasters, we are all chasing customers. We are looking for human visitors to come to our websites and to buy what we are selling.

To serve our needs for targeted traffic --- potential customers --- the search companies have begun to offer us a share of their significant traffic through many paid advertising methods.

The most common advertising offer at the search engines is the PPC (Pay-Per-Click) advertising model. There are also other search advertising models such as CPM (Cost Per Thousand Impressions) and Featured Listings.

In this article, we will look at the advantages and disadvantages of each advertising method.

PPC (Pay-Per-Click) Advertising Model

By far, PPC is currently the most popular advertising model. From the buyer's perspective, it is usually the most expensive type of advertising and the one that generates the most fear of fraud. In fact, many experts suggest that click-fraud might be as high as 20 to 25% of all click-traffic.

Pay-Per-Click is exactly what it sounds like. The advertiser bids on keywords and tells the advertising company that they will pay X number of cents or dollars for every click that they receive to their website through the PPC-provider's website.

Advertisers compete for position within the search results with the highest bidder getting the best advertising spot at the top of the results. The second highest bidder gets the #2 spot, etc.

Generally, Pay-Per-Click providers serve three listings on the first page of search results. Only when there is strong competition for a particular keyword term and a number of advertisers vying for placement, will the PPC-provider show results with more than three advertisers.

If you bid the minimum five cents per click (the standard for most PPC systems), then it is possible that you might not see your listing on page one or page two of the search results. Let's face it; PPC providers are interested in making the most money they can from the traffic they send to people. So, if one advertiser is paying a dollar per click and you are only bidding five cents a click, who do you think will receive the best placement? Yep, the one-dollar per click advertiser will get the most attention and the best placement, even if it requires pushing your placement back to page three of the search results.

The top two PPC-providers are: - Now owned by Yahoo!

Other not-so-well-known providers of PPC traffic, in alphabetical order, include: - Formerly

The biggest advantage to these systems is that they serve large pools of consumers online, and they let you target specific search keywords.

The disadvantages are numerous. Those most often cited include: the high cost of bids for certain keywords, poor conversion rates on purchased clicks, and click fraud (generally regarded as people clicking your link just so they can get paid for it).

Personally, I have paid as high as a dollar per-click for a service that sells for $35, and $20 in volume. I have spoken to others who operate for-profit websites and have paid as much as $2.50 per click on an average keyword. In some really competitive markets, people pay as much as $30 per click.

If you use the Web-Professor bid tool to check keywords at Overture ( ) and you type in the keyword "mesothelioma", you'll find 30 bidders vying for that term and a maximum bid of $29.88 per click! If the maximum bidder converts traffic to sales at the national average of 3%, then he or she is paying an average of $900 to get one client! Insane, but true.

CPM (Cost Per Thousand Impressions) Advertising Model

CPM advertising is most often associated with banner advertising, but can now be purchased for text ads as well. This type of advertising is available from many sources, including:

CPM advertising can be cheaper than PPC, but it fails to address the effectiveness of your advertising copy. Before undertaking a large CPM campaign, you need to be confident your advertising copy will deliver results.

As with any other type of advertising, you need to track click- through and conversion rates to determine the advertising copy that is most effective for your business.

You also need to have a solid understanding of how many impressions it will take to generate a visitor, and how many visitors you will need to generate one sale. And, on the backside, you will need to know what the average earnings from your sales will be. With these stats in hand, you'll know how much you can afford to pay for CPM advertising or any other type of advertising.

Using Google Adwords, you can buy CPM advertising for as little as $2 per thousand impressions. The one time I went that route, thinking my advertising might be cheaper, I ended up dropping $180 in three days with only one sale to show for my investment - -- utilizing the exact same ad that generated a 4% click-through rate (CTR) in Google's PPC advertising system.

The major appeal of CPM advertising is its perceived low-cost, with rates ranging between $2 - $3 per thousand impressions.

The major disadvantage to this type of advertising is that you need a good handle on how well your advertising is performing. Your advertising copy can make or break you. Additionally, you need to keep an eye on your advertising budget. From first hand experience, I can tell you that although CPM advertising can appear inexpensive, it can in short order surpass the costs of PPC advertising.

Featured Listing Advertising Model

Featured listings differ from the other two advertising models in that you do not pay for "ad clicks" or "ad impressions". With featured listings, your advertisement appears in the purchased location for 30 days, 90 days, or one year.

Featured listings can be bought on individual websites and even on networks of websites. Below are a few examples of advertising networks that offer featured listings:

Geek Files ( )

Geek Files offers various Featured Listing placement options with ad rates ranging from $19 to $179 per month. You get two months free if you buy advertising for a full year.

Aardvark Travel ( )

Aardvark Travel is a travel search engine. Featured listings appear in a colored box between the top five listings and the bottom five listings in the travel-related search results. There is a $50 setup fee for each Featured Listing and a $10 per month recurring charge for as long as you keep your listing active. Aardvark claims featured listings generate 40 times more clicks than any other listings on their pages.

The Independent Search Engine and Directory Network ( )

The ISEDN offers a program that allows you to purchase Top Ten exposure for your website(s) across their network of 200 plus member websites.

The network is comprised of specialized search engines, search directories, and article directories. Featured Listing placements for specific keywords are displayed across the entire ISEDN system.

The cost of a keyword term (the word or phrase associated with the listing) is $12 for three months or $36 for 12 months. The price drops for each additional 5 listings you purchase. If you are buying in volume, discounts can be significant. For example, the cost for 16 to 100 listings is $6 per listing for 3 months and $18 per listing for 12 months.

The main drawback to the ISEDN program is that the network, although large, does not yet have the traffic volume of the major engines.

The major benefit, of course, is that you can buy a lot more bang for your advertising dollars. Additionally, you can see your ads appearing on pages in a position that will attract more attention and click-through traffic to your website.

Which Advertising Model Is Right For You?

It really depends on your business model. More so, it depends on your absolute click-through averages and your website conversion rates.

Your advertising needs to cost you no more than what it earns for you. Ideally, your advertising will cost less than it earns for you.

Some businesses trade on the lifetime value of customers and are willing to pay more to get customers than what they earn on their first sale, but not all of us can afford to build a customer base in the same way that Amazon built theirs.

If your advertising budget is small, your goal should be to make every advertising dollar count. Grow your business to the point where you might be able to afford some of the more expensive advertising solutions. But then, if the lower-cost solutions generate sales for you, why would you want to pay more?

About The Author:

Bill Platt has owned and operated since 2001. If you would like to learn more about his article distribution service, visit his website. To read 100's of Bill's Tweet-sized tips for article marketing, SEO, and more, visit: Bill is also active on Twitter @contentmanager

Read more articles written by: Bill Platt

Thursday, September 17, 2009

One way to discover narrow niches

One way to see what people are doing in the niche area is to check out the newest articles at an active article distribution site.

Here is what I found this morning at Ezine Articles:

Want Your Ex Back? What Went Wrong? - Tiffany Dow recently released PLR articles on this topic. I wonder if this author bought her articles and rewrote them? I assume Tiffany researched the market keywords to see if writing such articles would be profitable.

Tutor Wanted - This one intrigued me as I wanted to find out what he or she is selling here, if anything. You know what? Sometimes people write articles "just because". Not often, but sometimes they feel the need to rant or to hone their writing skills. I wrote one yesterday I called "Camping checklist: then and now". Just because I like American history and I wonder how people lived before 1950. I checked the author's box on this one and found he offers a very nicely designed website where you can locate a tutor in your area of the US.

Speeding Traffic Tickets - the fellow who wrote this one is a trial lawyer in Broward County (where is that?).

Cast Iron Cookware - Singing the Praises of Its Versatility and Practicality - I like this one because the author works in a very narrow niche. However, the author put no links in his author bio. I'm not sure what that tells us, if anything. He says he knows a lot about auctions. Maybe he just likes cast iron cookware a lot. ;)

If you are considering niche marketing, I advise you to try extremely narrow niches first. If you need help with that, let me know and I will give you some tips.

How to Care For Orphaned Guinea Pigs in Five Easy Steps - Wow, an interesting topic indeed. This author, it turns out, wants you to join her Guinea Pig newsletter. The link leads you to a splash page to help make that happen. It makes sense. Guinea Pigs are a big market in the US.

How I Found Moccasin Boots Online - Again, a very narrow niche market. The link leads to a show store for women.

Gatwick Car Parking - this is clever marketing. The author wrote an article about this English airport and at the end of the article he says "Next time you fly from Gatwick, leave your car with us to start the perfect holiday for you and your car." Love it!

Greg Cryns
Work At Home Profiles - an inexpensive membership site

Tuesday, September 15, 2009

Is this porn marketing?

Filed under: Internet Porn Marketing

I received an email today. It is from "Jennifer Diop". The subject line was "Hi Dear"

Here is the content of the email:

Hi Dear,
how are you today i hope that every things is ok with you as it is my great pleassure to contact you through this having communication with you, please i wish you will have the desire with me so that we can get to know each other better and see what happened in future.

i will be very happy if you can write me through my email for easiest communication and to know all about each other, and also give you my pictures and details about me, here is my email, i will be waiting to hear from you as i wish you all the best for your day.

your new friend.
Miss Jennifer,

Do you think this involves porn spam in some way? Do birds chirp?

Greg Cryns

The Mighty Mo Wordpress Website Design and Promotion

How web spiders affect your SEO efforts

What is a web spider?

A web spider (crawl the web) is a software program often used by search engines to locate websites for inclusion in a

particular search engine.

It is also called a "bot."

The search engines extract information from websites such as the title of the pages and the keywords. They can tell when

the website was last modified. All of this information is transmitted to the central system deposit for indexing.

The spider will find all the links on your site that lead to other sites and creat "backlinks" to those sites. These are very

valuable to have for your website. Google trusts you more if you have a lot of good, pertinent incoming links.

It is important to understand how spiders affect your website. This information will help you do your SEO jobs.

Greg Cryns
The Mighty Mo Website Design and SEO

A Few Incredibly Boring Article Marketing Tips

Originality - write the article yourself! That is not to say you should not consult other already published material. Just write in your own words.

Posting to article distribution websites - the general concensus is to post the article on your own website before you hand it over to Ezine Articles and other article websites. This theory may be baloney but it is better to err on the side of safety to avoid Google ignoring your work.

Keyword phrases - do your keyword research first. Put the relevant keywords into your articles. For example, I consulted Google's Adwords keyword tool and found that "online article marketing" had a decent number of searches. So, I will state here that online article marketing has great value to you. ;) But note that I am not stuffing this article with that phrase. Bad idea as Google does not like to see that spam technique.

Get inbound links - there is no doubt that Google treasures inbound links to a website. Getting your article published on the PR 6 website Ezine Articles is helpful by itself. But if people use your well written article on their own websites, your author's box will assure many more inbound links. See how that works?

As I write this Ezine Articles has a minimum word count of 250 words per article. Personally, I like that number because I think I can put a lot of punch into fewer words than some other people. However, write longer articles as a general rule since you will have much more spider food to hand out.

Greg Cryns
Garage door opener report
Pet Urine Odor Remover


Monday, September 14, 2009

How to update your domain name host to make your website go live

As I do niche marketing with Adsense, I am always buying and setting up new domains. By the way, about Adsense, some people say Adsense is dead. Don't believe them. You can make money with Adsense. If you want to learn more, contact me.

Let's say you bought "" for your new niche. For newbies, that is just the first step. Next, you need to rent space on a website that provides HOSTING. Understand that the Domain Name Server is not your Domain Host. I know that looks rudimentary to experienced people, but to beginners this may not be so obvious. I was there once myself. ;)

So, you need to tell the Domain Name Server ( for example) to light up your website host. You do that by entering your website host information at your DNS transfer section where you bought the domain name. This information is usually given to you from your host's website. (see video below for more info)

Once your website server knows your domain name is "hot" it will allow you to FTP (send data to your live website) to make it be seen by the world. It may take a few minutes to a couple of days for your site to be live.

This is a nice video presentation:

Greg Cryns
Sewing Machine Report - Kids Sewing Machine for Christmas?

Work at home profiles - nice, inexpensive membership site