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Source: SEO or PPC; What’s More Important?

SEO or PPC; What’s More Important?

Just recently, a friend of mine approached me about his dealership site and how they had a consultant (SEO guru), do an SEO analysis of his site.

He was concerned that he may be losing money on keyword selection based on the analysis. As I explained to him there is some confusion out there regarding the entire Google platform and that having a balance of both high-level SEO, and an optimized PPC campaign is the ideal. I also explained that you only get charged by clicks, not keyword choices (lol)

Let’s cover SEO first.
SEO stands for “search engine optimization” which is a practice that makes sure that your website follows all of the necessary rules of engagement to make it easy to rank as organically high on the search engine results pages (SERPs) as possible. It includes having good content in the form of copy, pictures, and video. All material should be relevant to the subject matter and have keywords and key phrases as an essential part of the site copy.  There are other technical aspects but forget those for now.  Having great SEO is the “free” way to get listed.

Offsite SEO is still a huge part of the overall SEO mix. Having other high-quality sites backlink to your website is the water that lifts the ice cube to the top of the glass so to speak. Having your dealership properly listed via all of the 300+ listing sites and the 4 main data companies (Factual, Acxiom, Infogroup and Neustar (Localeze), means that people will correctly know your company name, address, hours of operation, and telephone number. To have incorrect info strewn about the internet will definitely hurt your chances of getting highly-ranked. It will hurt your overall “Quality Score” which is essentially what Google uses to rank you in the search engine, and that’s where PPC and SEO strike their balance.

What is the “Quality Score”?
Quality Score is Google’s rating of the quality and relevance of both your keywords and PPC ads. It is used to determine your cost per click (CPC) and multiplied by your maximum bid to determine your ad rank in the ad auction process. Your Quality Score depends on multiple factors, including:

1) Your click-through rate (CTR) (PPC campaign)

2) The relevance of each keyword to its ad group (PPC campaign)

3) Landing page quality and relevance (SEO)

4) The relevance of your ad text (PPC & SEO)

5) Your historical AdWords account performance (PPC)

As you can see, there is a mix of PPC and SEO involved in optimizing a Quality Score which essentially determines where your stores website is going to show up in a typical search operation. Great SEO alone can get you on to the first page of search, but unless you are well-branded, your position may vary from near the top, to not on the page at all. The leads you get from great organic (unpaid) placement are basically free and are high quality. However, to get into the top position and get the most clicks possible, and the best clicks according to numerous studies, you have to pay for placement.

PPC guarantees a first page presence.
The cost of that presence is somewhat based on the quality of the website’s SEO execution. The ads in the pay per click campaign have to be compelling enough to get a good click through rate, but the words and phrasing used in each ad must also match those keywords and phrases (long tail search terms) on the website pages they are linked to. The better the execution and matching of verbiage in ads and on the site, the better your organic ranking, and the cheaper you clicks will be. It’s a seriously incestuous relationship. Google wants to reward you for creating a good user experience (SEO) but needs to make money so they have PPC to nudge those rankings to the top if you pay enough to rank high.
Google really has it figured out. It used to be that Google had two columns on every search results page. The left column had the organic listings (best SEO executions and/or brand names). People used to click at an 8:1 ratio favoring the organic or “free” listings over the listings in the right column which were all paid for. Google then eliminated the two column design and started putting PPC campaign ads on top of each SERP which now has only one column combining paid and free results. This cut down the ratio that favored free search results and increased Google’s click revenue.
The point is, having as much visibility as possible in any search operation is crucial. It’s termed “page dominance”. In my estimation, the companies that do both well, win. The companies that only do PPC, run inefficient, expensive campaigns. The companies that ignore PPC, are likely too budget-conscious to compete and suffer with inconsistent visibility. Those who combine Google Best Practices, and optimize both SEO as well as their PPC campaigns, dominate their competition.
I hope this helps clarify the decade-old question of how SEO and PPC affect one and other, and how using both to your advantage is the best way to the top of the mountain.

Introducing Google Now – Automotive Digital Marketing Professional Community

From a strategic positioning perspective, I see Google Now as the alternative to iOS Siri on iPhones and iPads.  The intersection of GPS location with time of day is fascinating.  Let the competitive development wars continue… Will Siri include contemporaneous integration like Google Now seems to have?

Ping.fm – Buzz This, Integrate That! http://ping.fm/OYPoy

Location:Chicago, IL

Jim Ziegler and Ralph Paglia Host Dealer Battle Plan Workshop in Atlantic City on July 6-8th

ATLANTA, June 2 — Top automotive industry trainer Jim Ziegler presents a dynamic workshop to help auto retailers meet online marketing challenges. Automobile retail sales are a fiercely competitive and erratic market. Ziegler’s plan is to give dealers an Internet Sales and Marketing Strategy to outperform the competition. This powerful event will be held at Bally’s Atlantic City, just minutes from the Philadelphia and New York City areas.

Change is constant. Nothing is the way it was, and will never be that way again. After working with thousands of automobile dealers over the years, Jim Ziegler needed to be sure his clients kept up with the new realities of changing technologies and the emerging influence of social media. So he assembled an all-star faculty for this dynamic event. All four presenters are world-class online retail practitioners. Their expertise and hands-on experience has shown they know what works and what doesn’t work in the online sales arena.

Workshop Instructors Ralph Paglia, Joe Webb and Tim Jennings have all been top-rated speakers at premier industry events and have managed both large and small InternetDepartments. When interviewed, Jim Ziegler smiled and said, “I’ve assembled a killer team for this event, combat tested veterans with more than four decades of in-the-trenches experience.”

Now, Ziegler and friends are delivering the real deal, content-rich sessions, hands-on “real-world stuff”, not theory. These tactics and processes are battle-tested on the front lines in dealerships all across the country.

Jim continued, “Dealerships can’t afford to miss a single opportunity to do business.” Having a dominant and effective presence on Facebook, Twitter, and other portals is critical to dealership marketing strategy. Ziegler and Paglia are masters of Social medium relationship sales and marketing. Students will take back an in-depth understanding of how to leverage online relationships for sales and profits as well as…

  --  The pathway to success; from email, to telephone, to the appointment
      to delivery
  --  How to Maximize Existing Profit Centers and Create New Ones
  --  How to use self-produced videos to capture customer trust and create
      credibility
  --  Focus sites, micro sites, and 12 other secrets to drive high-volume
      traffic
  --  Internet stealth marketing techniques with 'Ninja' Search Engine
      Optimization
  --  Marketing and Advertising with ultimate Video Search Engine
      Maximization
  --  How to turn your dealership into an Internet Sales Powerhouse
  --  Customer Relationship Management and CSI Engineering Projects for High
      Average Profitability, Top-Rated CSI Scores, Customer Retention and
      Referrals!
  --  YouTube, Facebook, LinkedIn and Twitter: How to profitize
      relationships with consumers through customer-friendly "Pull
      Marketing"

  About :

Ziegler SuperSystems is an automotive training and consulting organization based in the Atlanta, GA area. President Jim Ziegler is a member of the National Speakers Association and has been a keynote speaker at National and State Dealer conventions, and has trained over 75,000 Dealers, GSMs, Sales and F&I Managers. Course and Training information is at: http://zieglersupersystems.com/ Jim can be reached at: 800-726-0510

Jim Ziegler and Ralph Paglia Host Dealer Battle Plan Workshop in Atlantic City on July 6-8th.

Dealer Internet Battle Plan Workshop

Internet Battle Plan Workshop for Car Dealers

Automotive Internet Battle Plan Workshop Hosted by Jim Ziegler and Ralph Paglia to be held on July 6-8th in Atlantic City, NJ

ATLANTA, June 2 /PRNewswire/ — Top automotive industry trainer Jim Ziegler and automotive digital marketing expert Ralph Paglia present a dynamic workshop to help auto retailers meet online marketing challenges. Automobile retail sales are a fiercely competitive and erratic market. Ziegler and Paglia’s plan is to give dealers an Internet Sales and Marketing Strategy to outperform the competition by gaining unfair competitive advantage on the web. This powerful event will be held at Bally’s Atlantic City, just minutes from the Philadelphia and New York City areas.

Change is constant. Nothing is the way it was, and will never be that way again. After working with thousands of automobile dealers over the years, Jim Ziegler needed to be sure his clients kept up with the new realities of changing technologies and the emerging influence of social media. So he assembled an all-star faculty for this dynamic event. All four presenters are world-class online retail practitioners. Their expertise and hands-on experience has shown they know what works and what doesn’t work in the online sales arena.

Jim Ziegler

Jim Ziegler

Ralph Paglia

Ralph Paglia

Joe Webb

Joe Webb

Tim Jennings

Tim Jennings

Workshop Instructors Ralph Paglia, Joe Webb and Tim Jennings have all been top-rated speakers at premier industry events such as Digital Dealer Conference and Exposition, J. D. Power and Associates Automotive Internet Roundtable, Dealer Synergy Sessions, ENG Automotive CRM Summits, Kelley Blue Book eNetworking Conferences, Driving Sales Executive Summit, Ford Lincoln Mercury Digital Advertising Summit, Toyota eCertified Dealer Workshops, NADA Workshops, General Motors Standards For Excellence (SFE) Conference, American Honda Motor Company Institute, Honda iN, Ford DealerConnection Workshop, Mercedes-Benz StarLeads and Content Management System Dealer Workshops, Reynolds Contact Management CRM Seminars, Honda iN Lead Management Workshop, Hyundai Dealer Lead Management Dealer Training, Ford Internet Lead Management (FILM) Dealer Seminars, Ford Business Development Center (BDC) Dealer Summits, Toyota University Signature Program, Honda EXCEL, Ford eTools Dealer Workshops, NCM 20 Group Automotive Digital Advertising for Dealers, ADP Dealer Services Internet Sales Dealer Summits, Automotive Success Magazine Best Practice Summits, and many more too numerous to list them all… Each of these car guys have managed both large and small dealership Internet Sales Departments.

When interviewed, Jim Ziegler smiled and said, “I’ve assembled a killer team for this event, combat tested veterans with more than four decades of in-the-trenches experience.”

When asked about his success in selling over 4,000 cars via the web in calendar year 2006 while working as Internet Director at Courtesy Chevrolet in Phoenix, Ralph Paglia smiled and responded, “Our team in Phoenix was able to do that because we went to war on the web with several unfair competitive advantages… As other dealers caught on, copied what we were doing, we continued to launch barrage after barrage of web initiatives that kept us ahead in the market by seizing and controlling car buyer mindshare…”

The well known Automotive Digital Marketing guru, Ralph Paglia, went on to say that he will deliver; “…several strategic and tactical “How To’s” that will not be for the weak or timid dealer because they are the web equivalent of “going nuclear” on a dealer’s local competition.”

Ralph Paglia stated, “Dealers with a weak stomach for hyper-competitive tactics such as driving traffic from their competitor’s lots and showrooms using mobile web apps and text messaging may find some of my more aggressive tactics as being a little over the top… But, by learning my Web Ninja Sales tactics they will at least be able to recognize and know when other dealers are using these aggressive techniques to steal business from their dealership before it is too late to defend themselves!”

At Bally’s Resort in Atlantic City, NJ on July 6 through July 8, Jim Ziegler and Ralph Paglia will deliver the real deal, content-rich sessions, hands-on “real-world stuff”, not theory.  Attendees will leave this 3 day workshop with the know-how to deploy the tactics and processes that are battle-tested and proven effective on the front lines in the most successful dealerships throughout North America.

Jim Ziegler advise all dealers to take action NOW; “Dealerships can’t afford to miss a single opportunity to do business… You MUST register and attend this Dealer Internet Battle Plan Workshop with your key managers or risk getting blown out of the market by your competition which is preparing THEIR Internet Battle Plan as you are reading these words!””

Having a dominant and effective presence on Facebook, Twitter, and other portals is critical to dealership marketing strategy.  Ziegler and Paglia are masters of the Social Web and using this incredibly popular medium to generate relationship based sales and to achieve dealer marketing objectives.  Dealer Internet Battle Plan Workshop participants will take back materials, hand-outs, CD’s, top secret user names and passwords along with an in-depth understanding of how to leverage online relationships for sales and profits.

Jim Ziegler and Ralph Paglia have each personally committed themselves to delivering workshop attendees a thorough understanding and ability to leverage the following…

  • How to implement “pathway to success”; email to telephone, phone to showroom, appointment to delivery
  • Effectively Maximize Existing Profit Centers and Create New Revenue and Profits
  • How to self-produce videos that capture customer trust and create high levels of credibility
  • Focus sites, microsites, landing page tactics and 12 other secrets to driving high-volume traffic
  • Internet stealth marketing techniques with ‘Ninja’ Search Engine Optimization
  • Beat third party lead providers at their own game on the Internet battlefield
  • Marketing and Advertising with ultimate Video Search Engine Maximization
  • How to turn your dealership into an Internet Sales Powerhouse
  • Customer Relationship Management and CSI Engineering Projects for High Average Profitability, Top-Rated CSI Scores, Customer Retention and Referrals!
  • YouTube, Facebook, LinkedIn and Twitter: How to profitize social media through customer-friendly “Pull Marketing”
  • Using little known but powerful web apps to divert OEM traffic to dealership websites
  • Receive individual passwords and authorized access to restricted file servers with hundreds of proven effective email templates, phone scripts, reporting spreadsheets, How To PPT files, performance metrics from top dealers, Internet Dept. Workflow process maps, business plans and other content too valuable to make openly available on the Internet!*

Ziegler SuperSystems is an automotive training and consulting organization based in the Atlanta, GA area. President Jim Ziegleris a member of the National Speakers Association and has been a keynote speaker at National and State Dealer conventions, and has trained over 75,000 Dealers, GSMs, Sales and F&I Managers. Course and Training information is at:http://zieglersupersystems.com/ Jim can be reached at: 800-726-0510

Ralph Paglia has served ADP Dealer Services as Director of Digital Marketing Solutions since April 2007.  He established the partnership between Ford Motor Company and ADP Digital Marketing which features joint ventures such as the Ford Lincoln Mercury Digital Advertising Program for Dealers and the Ford Regional Digital Marketing Consultants (DMC) supplied by ADP Digital Marketing.  Ralph is also the founder and editor in chief of the Automotive Digital Marketing Professional Community located at www.AutomotiveDigitalMarketing.com which is the industry’s leading independent online resource for digital marketing and Internet Sales Management tools, strategies, tactics, files, photos, videos and professional networking amongst over 3,500 of the most successful automotive marketing practitioners in the auto industry.  Ralph has recently led the development, build-out and opening of the ADP Social Media Reputation Management SkySong Operations Center as an auto industry leading joint venture between Arizona State University (ASU) and ADP Dealer Services located at ASU’s state of the art SkySong Center for Innovation, Technology and Imagination in Scottsdale, Arizona.  Ralph Paglia can be reached on his cell at 505-301-6369… by email at Ralph_Paglia@adp.com or follow him at http://twitter.com/RalphPaglia and friend him at www.Facebook.com/RPaglia.

*PLEASE NOTE:  File Server Access is restricted to workshop attendees and will be revoked for any dealer caught sharing their password with anyone who did not attend the Dealer Battle Plan workshop.

SOURCE:  Ziegler SuperSystems and Paglia Professional Network

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Local Shoppers Look Online First

MARCH 15, 2010

90% search online for nearby businesses

The overwhelming majority of US Internet users research online to find local products and services, according to the “User View Wave VII” from BIA/Kelsey and ConStat.

The most common online tool used for local research was search. Nearly one-half of respondents used Internet yellow pages and 42% checked comparison-shopping sites before heading to local businesses.

Media Used by US Internet Users When Researching Local Products/Services, Q1 2010 (% of respondents)

In summer 2009, TMP Directional Marketing and comScore found that and 46% of local online searchers contacted a business by telephone after Web research, and 37% visited in person.

“The Internet has indeed become an integral part of consumers’ local commercial activity,” said Steve Marshall, director of research, BIA/Kelsey, in a statement. “The data suggest we’re at an inflection point where the balance of power in local shopping is shifting to online.”

Local advertising dollars will follow eyeballs; BIA/Kelsey expects the Web to get an increasing share of local ad spending over the next several years, reaching one-quarter of the total in 2014.

Over time, the researchers have noted an increase in the number of sources used for local shopping research, suggesting audience fragmentation that can be challenging for advertisers.

Average Number of Media Sources Used by US Internet Users When Shopping for Local Products/Services, Q1 2007-Q1 2010

“These challenges may be outweighed by the targeting opportunities available with tools like coupon promotions and appointment scheduling, the latter being among the best lead sources possible, since you know where people are actually going,” said Peter Krasilovsky, vice president and program director, Marketplaces, BIA/Kelsey, in a statement.

According to the report, 58% of respondents said they had redeemed an online coupon when shopping locally in the past year, and 19% made a local appointment other than a restaurant reservation on the Web.

[Sent from Ralph Paglia’s iPhone]

As Google continues to glean display advertising expertise through their acquisition of DoubleClick, the hits just keep on coming… Google has added several MORE new features to the Google AdWords display ad builder recently launched in September 2008. Dealers and their Managers can use these new capabilities to easily create and self-administer their website targeted display advertising placements… Google says that there most recent upgrades to the Adwords display ad creator application are based on user feedback, but I personally suspect some of the DoubleClick gang at work. Google has increased functionality in a way that provides greater dealer customization capabilities and even makes building website display ads easier.

For example, the new image picker feature lets dealers choose from a library of previously uploaded images, such as dealership and brand logos, when creating new ads. I especially like the real-time editing display that lets users see ad copy and text, along with any other custom edits without having to repeatedly click the “update preview” button.

The Google Adwords display ad builder updates give dealers a quicker way of seeing the various sizes the ad can run in each ad template without having to complete the ad creation process. There is a preview mode that provides a view of how customization choices affect each size. The tool also offers additional website display advertising templates. Dealers can get started right away with website and geotargeted local display advertising by entering their offer or promotional text, uploading vehicle images, brand badges and dealership logos. Dealers can then select their favorite ad format from more than 40 professionally designed display advertising templates.

In fact, these new Google Adwords display advertising capabilities make it exceptionally easy to quickly create ads with different offers and then run A-B testing to see which offer has more appeal to car buyers by simply comparing click-through rates from the same websites. One of the more enlightening insights I was able to see in a matter of one week was that some offers that work better on certain types of websites, actually underperform on other sites. For example, special lease offers seem to work well on financial news sites, whereas an offer for free upgrade to 22″ Wheels and low profile tires out-pulled the lease payment offer on enthusiast sites.

All of this brings to the forefront another advantage of digital advertising versus offline advertising… The ability to target the right message to the right audience at the right time in their online research process.

You can see Google’s own step-by-step process for creating, distributing and tracking online display advertisements at the following site: http://www.google.com/adwords/displayadbuilder/

About the Automotive Digital Marketing Professional Community

The Automotive Digital Marketing (ADM) Professional Community website is built on a perpetually expandable “Viral Expansion Loop” Networking Platform and serves Car Dealers and their management teams, including Internet Sales Managers, BDC Managers, Marketing Managers and Sales Managers. ADM is also a proven resource for OEM Interactive Media and eBusiness Managers who want to see, hear and read what the best Digital and Interactive Marketing professionals in the automotive industry have to say about relevant and timely topics. ADM is a great place for Tier 1, Tier 2 and Tier 3 Automotive Advertising Practitioners, as well as Web Site Managers, automotive software Developers and Solution Designers to get new ideas and stay up to date. ADM also serves Automotive CRM and Lead Management Tool developers and their sales professionals as an online exchange for strategy, tactics, best practices, files, resources and contacts within the auto industry.

– Currently, ADM has over 1,600 active members
– There have been over 3,800 photos uploaded and available for use by members
– There have been over 520 music tracks uploaded
– Members have uploaded over 630 videos to share
– There have been over 340 discussions started and ongoing
– Members have created more than 460 blog posts within their ADM provided blog space

If you are interested in visiting and perhaps joining the Automotive Digital Marketing Professional Community, go to: http://www.AutomotiveDigitalMarketing.com

The ADM Professional Community is about automotive Internet sales and digital marketing professionals working with Acura, Audi, BMW, Chrysler, Dodge, Ford, Toyota, Chevrolet, Chevy, Honda, Nissan, GMC, GM, Mercedes-Benz, Mopar, Lincoln, Mercury, VW, Volkswagen and other car company brands.

ADM is also proud to serve as an online meeting place and idea exchange for web solution providers such as ADP Dealer Services, The Cobalt Group, The Reynolds and Reynolds Company, BZ Results, ADP Dynamic Websites, Dealer.com Automotive Websites, Dealerskins, Izmocars and Izmo CRM, TK CarSites, Autobase, DealerTrack, Arkona, Reynolds Web Solutions, Clickmotive, Xi Group and other technology suppliers and vendors.