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Strategy, Techniques, and Track it all with Google Analytics

So you are the resident pay-per-click (PPC) guru, you have your campaigns running in Google Adwords, your metrics are looking good, your cost per acquisition is looking great, your post-click metrics in Google Analytics are just shining, and your return on your marketing spend is just outstanding. Your boss, or your client if you are an online marketing agency, says: “bring me more (and dangling the promotion/bonus carrot)!” And being the good sport you are, you say with confidence, “of course!”

You know Google is king when it comes to traffic volume, but you more or less exhausted your creative ideas to drive additional traffic through Adwords – what do you do? It is now time to explore other search engines, Yahoo! Search Marketing, MSN adCenter, and maybe some vertical or secondary search engines.

In this blog post, I’ll cover some PPC implementation techniques to optimize your paid search marketing across multiple search engines, especially Google Adwords and MSN adCenter, while ensuring your PPC post-click metrics are properly tracked in Google Analytics.

The process of transferring campaigns from one search engine to another can be very time consuming and tiring, especially when you have a big account with a large number of campaigns, ad groups, and keywords. A frequent problem popping up on the web these days is the ability to transferring campaigns from your Google Adwords account into your MSN adCenter account. In this post I hope to to answer this question and a little more.

  • We first advise that you optimize your campaigns in Google Adwords, allowing enough time for testing different ad variations, adding relevant and negative keywords, and applying other PPC optimization techniques. You can even go further and test few landing pages and pick the best performing ones. When you feel satisfied with the performance in Google Adwords, you can now start planning to migrate them into your MSN adCenter account.
  • You need to create and run an ad performance report in Adwords to get the needed information to transfer into your adCenter account. Our friends at Affiliate-Blog have came up with a clean and straightforward way to create this report and transfer it into your adCenter account.

Adding the campaigns in adCenter is one thing, but to be able to see campaign data and more in Google Analytics requires a little more work. It is time to tag those URLs! Here are few tips that will help you tag your URLs properly so that the data shows up in a clear and consistent manner. You can use the Google URL builder to create custom tags for your adCenter destination URLs.

Here is a list of the elements you needs to tag.

  1. Campaign Source: msn
  2. Campaign Medium: cpc
  3. Campaign Term: {QueryString}
    Adding this parameter will allow you to track all your keywords in Google Analytics without having to type each keyword manually.
  4. Campaign Content: (used to differentiate ads)
  5. Campaign Name: (whatever the campaign name is)

Example:

http://www.domain.com/?utm_source_=adcenter&utm_medium=cpc&utm_term=mykeyword&utm_content=variation1&utm_campaign=campaign1

For more details, check out this article written by our friends at PPC Hero

Few Suggestions:

  • I recommend you use a unique naming convention to make it easier for you to identify your adCenter campaigns in Google Analytics reports. For example, I want to set up a campaign to market E-nor’s Google Analytics services. In Google Adwords, the campaign name can be g_GAServices and for an adCenter campaign you can name it m_GAServices. Using this naming convention will make it very easy for you to visually identify which PPC system the campaign belongs to.
  • I would recommend you import one campaign to adCenter and allow enough time to test it. Check the results in GA to make sure your URL tagging was thorough. If everything goes smoothly, then start transferring the rest of the campaigns after following the same steps we mentioned earlier.

Have a great day transferring and tagging your campaigns! 😉

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