With the introduction of expandable text ads and trends like audience targeting, device bidding, local search and video advertising, Clever Marketing takes a look at the top PPC trends to use in 2017.

Expandable text ads

Expandable text ads were introduced at the end of January and they’re already generated good results within PPC advertising. While standard pay per click advertising will continue to be visible alongside, it’s not possible to edit the content. Expandable text ads have two headlines in place of the standard one with 30 available characters instead of 25. There’s also an 80 character description field so you have a greater level of personalisation. These ads also use your final URL domain rather than the display URL. All expandable text ads are mobile optimised.

Audience targeting

With audience targeting, you can be even more accurate when it comes to selecting who sees your PPC advertising. Custom combinations can be created for existing audiences and new customers can be attracted based on an interest category for example. Typically a visitor will browse your website an average of six times before getting in contact or making a purchase so it’s important to get this right. Keywords might be the initial trigger but you need to ensure they return. Consider how effective your remarketing campaigns are and whether you bid for the “user intent” based search terms. Speak to your PPC agency if you require support here.

Device bidding

Mobile is the most used channel for web browsing and we’re set to see another rise in usage this year. It’s estimated there will be around 6 billion smartphone users globally by 2020. As such, Google has introduced device level bidding in AdWords (mobile and tablets) so you can adjust bids based on user searches and incorporate these into your marketing plan. This means you can set a default for one kind of device and adjust the others providing you with more flexibility. With CPC’s on the rise, a more targeted campaign will result in lower expenditure and an improvement in conversions. It will also enable you to identify any campaign weaknesses and have greater control.

Local searches

With more people searching locally from their mobile device, it’s essential to think about your competitors – especially if you’re a local business or a non-local brand targeting local traffic. If your business doesn’t come up in search results, it could be a missed opportunity. It’s not just about optimising local search results but local search on mobile. Google places such emphasis on this, it prioritises mobile friendly websites with its algorithm. Customers viewing websites from their tablet or mobile are more likely to use a service or buy a product than those that don’t. Their need is more immediate than if they were at home browsing from a desktop. With local search, your PPC ad has to feel local to encourage click throughs so you must maintain that local feel and use mobile ad extensions where feasible.

Video advertising

Video advertising is not only on the rise, it’s evolving all the time with platforms continually emerging. Social media has seen a huge increase in video content over recent years. Not only does it engage consumers and provide an emotional connection to a particular brand, it’s shareable. While Facebook (and live streaming service Facebook Live) is a dominant player, Twitter now allows creators to monetise video and Pinterest have launched promoted videos. Mobile video is also becoming increasingly popular with 2017 likely to be the year of mobile.

If you’d like to speak to someone about your PPC management, contact Paul Mackenzie Ross at PPC agency Clever Marketing on 020 3146 4341.

If you believed everything you read on the internet, you’d think that mobile phones are taking over the world.

In a way, though, they are – last year for the first time mobile traffic exceeded desktop traffic, reflecting the momentous shift that’s been happening in consumer browsing habits for some time now. Namely that we now use our mobiles for everything. Checking social media, browsing the news, shopping – our mobiles are never out of our hands.

And this is why brands with mobile optimised or responsive websites have been enjoying the spoils of higher traffic and increased conversion. A lot of companies are trailing behind when it comes to making their website pleasant and easy to use on mobile. Where does your website fall on the spectrum?

To help you make boost your mobile conversion rates, here are five ways to improve your mobile website.

1. Make your website a pleasure to use on mobile

First things first; is your website responsive, or do you have a mobile optimised version? If the answer to both of these questions is no, then don’t read the rest of this blogpost and get yourself a responsive website!

If you need help checking to see if your website is mobile friendly, visit Google’s Mobile-friendly test and enter the URL of the web page you need to test.

If you’re still relying on the desktop version of your site to carry you through, your conversions are likely to be suffering. The standard of mobile websites is so high these days that consumers have little to no patience with pinching, scrolling and squinting in order to just read content or perform an action. If your website acts this way, it’s likely to be slow to load and will also make you appear dated and old-fashioned in comparison to competitors.

2. Make your mobile checkout quick and easy

We all have pretty high standards when it comes to mobile browsing these days, and will quickly lose interest and move on to something better if any process becomes too difficult or takes too long (our attention span is only getting shorter – we can only spend a few seconds on any one webpage now without giving up). Consider one click ordering and guest checkout options to encourage conversion.

Consumers will also be put off by payment forms which are too long. Keep questions rudimentary and also consider features such as a postcode finder and numerical calendar to make things as user-friendly as possible.

3. Streamline your content

Put simply, you have a lot less space on a mobile screen than you do on a desktop, or even a tablet. There’s less room for distractions, such as pop-up ads or external links. Padding out your content with too many added extras will make your pages look cluttered and visually unappealing to a consumer.

In addition, if they’re too busy being distracted by ads and banners then they’re less likely to be doing that one thing you’ve brought them to your website to do: convert. Keep your mobile webpages as clean and simple as possible and only prioritise the most relevant content in order to see the highest conversion rates.

4. Condense your navigation options

Are you noticing a theme emerging here? To be successful on mobile, you basically need to serve up a cleaner, more streamlined and simplified version of your website.

For starters, your navigation menu should be collapsed to allow a user to expand it and explore their options with one tap. Secondly, present them with only the most essential layers of navigation to prevent confusion and the possibility that they’ll get lost in your website and leave out of frustration. Bring your product pages to the forefront and reduce the number of clicks it takes them to reach the checkout.

5. Make the most out of your calls to action

We’ll say it again – mobile screens are (comparatively) small! To make sure a user doesn’t miss anything, (remember, they’re likely to be commuting, watching TV or chatting away to a friend at the same time) make your calls to action as big and as inviting as possible.

Don’t be afraid to use large or colourful buttons to draw attention. There’s a dual reasoning behind making your calls to action even more prominent than on desktop – users also need to be able to click them easily with one tap. Too small, and we’re back to that pinching and scrolling issue which leads to nothing but frustration – and a failed conversion.

If you need help with any web design, from making your website mobile-friendly to improving click through rates, give us a call on 020 3146 4341 and see what Clever Marketing can do for you.

Responsive web design was a key trend in 2013 and is now firmly embedded as a best practice (for most situations), but although marketers have got to grips with building websites that work on mobile devices, many are lagging behind when it comes to their email campaigns.


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