Category Archives: Link

How to Use CallRail to Attribute Phone Calls Back to Your Landing Pages

Getting a new client always starts innocently enough. Initial talks go well. Everyone’s on board. But then you get full account access and start digging deeper…

True story: I once worked with a client who was spending tens of thousands each month on PPC. Yet they had zero conversion tracking.

The phone rang, sure. But no one knew why. Everyone just assumed it was… ? Billboards? (Let’s not be ridiculous, here.)

Image via Shutterstock.

“But I have an AdWords call extension,” you claim. “I AM tracking phone calls with events,” you say.

That’s great. A good start. But not nearly enough. Here’s why.

Problem #1: How often do you call a new company directly from an AdWords ad?

Or do you act like a rational human being and click through the ad to the website or landing page to check them out first? That way, you can see if they’re legit or not before picking up the phone to dial. But what happens with your AdWords call extension in this case?

That’s right. You get nothing.

Problem #2: Last touch attribution bias.

AdWords drove the call, but you have no idea which steps before helped to “assist” the conversion. You can’t measure the proper attribution.

Problem #3: You’re only able to see aggregate data.

Let’s suspend disbelief for a second and say someone called you without ever leaving the SERPs, deciding to hand over their credit card to a complete stranger because you just sounded so nice on the phone…

You can still only see aggregate data.

Calls aren’t customers. They’re just calls.

Maybe the prospect’s lost and needs directions. Maybe they want the hours of your location. Maybe the stars aligned and they did become a lead.

Now, all hope is not lost. There is a solution. A way out of this mess. You just need the right tool for the right job.

Enter CallRail.

How to reclaim the phone calls you so rightfully deserve

CallRail can do a few awesome things that will make many of the aforementioned problems go away.

The gold lies in their dynamic keywords pool feature.

Let’s replay the scenario from earlier to see how it works. Someone Googles you, clicks through to a landing page, and possibly might even bounce back to your homepage to find out more about you first.

In the old days, you’d be SOL.

With CallRail’s number insertion, though, your tracking phone number will follow that person from page to page throughout their sessions.

Once someone does call in, you get a wealth of data including the pages they visited during this session, their physical location, and of course, the specific ad or keyword they clicked on in the first place.

The insight will be neatly compiled inside a dashboard for that individual call:

And you know what’s even more glorious?

You can automagically pass this data back to your CRM to track subsequent calls and/or real, honest-to-goodness conversions. (Assuming, of course, that you’re not using a precious “industry specialized” piece of software that doesn’t allow you to do anything with anything.)

Call data now gets passed back and forth. You can even merge it with existing lead data. So you’re not just tracking phone leads anymore, but real dolla dolla billz y’all. #closedloopforthewin

Sounds great, right?

Here’s how to set it up on your campaigns.

Step 1: Start by creating a dynamic keyword pool in CallRail

Log into the CallRail dashboard and head to the Numbers section (denoted with a pound sign):

Next, look for the little button that says, “+ Add a Phone Number”:

After clicking, you’ll get the option to use it online or off (so you can track calls from account-based marketing campaigns for example):

Next, you’ll want to add it to your website.

And then track each individual visitor (as opposed to the campaign).

This way you’ll set up a “pool” of phone numbers that will automatically tie and rotate for each individual website visitor (as opposed to tracking by page).

So let’s now set up that pool.

Go ahead and name the pool whatever you’d like.

The “Destination Number” is the business line your company uses that you want to ultimately ring. We can also edit this later with a “Swap Target.”

Your pool size should depend on how much real-time traffic you get to your site. Generally speaking, you’ll need smaller pool sizes on low traffic sites and larger pool sizes on higher traffic sites.

I believe CallRail’s recommendation is (or was) to look at the number of real-time visitors you’re getting to your site at its peak to gauge the ultimate pool number you might need at any one time.

Next, select which traffic sources you’d like this number pool to track (just default to “All”).

Then you can select a specific area code (toll-free vs. local) you want to use on your website.

Finally, select whether you want to record calls and add a “whisper message.”

The whisper message is exactly what it sounds like.

When someone calls from your landing page, the person answering the phone at your business will hear a soft whisper message before the call connects. For example, you can set it to say “holiday sale promotion” to alert the person answering the phone to the source of the call.

This can be very helpful to know exactly how to service the customer without asking how they got to you.

(Recording calls is also free FYI.)

Easy enough, right?!

Perfect. Now let’s move on to the next step.

Step 2: Set up your landing page

We created our first dynamic keyword pool in the last step. Now we want to install the script onto our Unbounce landing pages and set up your phone number swap targets.

There are two ways to do it, so let’s start with the lazy easy solution of pointing and clicking with the official integration.

Go into Unbounce and find the company you’d like to integrate with CallRail.

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Next, click on the “Settings” gear icon:

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Now select the “Integrations” tab inside CallRail (under “Settings”).

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And click “Activate” on the Unbounce option.

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You’ll then be whisked away to Unbounce to Authorize the connection.

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You can also install the tracking script manually on each landing page if you’d rather not connect at the company level.

First, head over to the “Settings” gear icon and click on “Integrations” to find “Dynamic Number Insertion.”

Then scroll down and you’ll find the tracking JavaScript:

All you’ll need to do is copy and paste this before the closing body tag (</body>) on the pages containing your phone number.

Look for “JavaScripts” down at the bottom of your landing page builder inside Unbounce:

Then paste in your code and select the correct placement (“Before Body End Tag”).

Obviously, save your work — and you’re done. Easy peasy.

Now let’s go update any swap target details on these landing pages.

Head back into CallRail and go to the “Numbers” section again.

Now, select the number pool you just created in the last step by clicking on the little edit pencil icon:

Then, scroll down to point three (“Dynamic Number Insertion”) to add the Swap Target and edit the Pool Size (if needed).

The Swap Target is the phone number you want CallRail to look for on your website and dynamically change it with ones from your keyword pool.

So if you have 123-456-7899 as your company number, you would place that as the swap target so that CallRail can populate new tracking numbers for each visitor.

(You can also add a secondary Swap Target if you have multiple different phone numbers on the page.)

Missing out on precious phone call lead data? CallRail integrates seamlessly with Unbounce landing pages. See other industry leading tools you can connect with your landing pages.

Step 3: Integrate CallRail with AdWords

You’ve already done a lot of work. Nice job! Any calls from “organic” sources of traffic should now be tracked inside CallRail.

However, the entire point of this exercise was to demystify your PPC traffic, so let’s connect CallRail with your AdWords account.

Inside CallRail, go to “Settings,” “Integrations,” and then click on “Google AdWords.”

Once there, click the “Authorize” button at the bottom of the page.

Now “Allow” with your Google account.

Then choose the company you want to integrate with CallRail.

Hit “Activate” and you should be good to go.

Before moving on, though, let’s add keyword-level tracking.

Adding keyword-level tracking

Adding the ?keyword=link parameter to your URLs in AdWords is the last recommended step. Adding this parameter to your ad URLs will make sure individual keyword data displays on your call log and in caller’s timelines (inside CallRail).

Head to your “Shared Library” at the bottom of your AdWords account.

Then head over to the URL options in the bottom right-hand corner.

Here, you have two options:

  1. You can add a tracking template, and
  2. You can set up auto tracking

Here’s how to manually add the tracking data.

Type “{lpurl}” and add the keyword parameter. In this case, {lpurl} represents your final URL, so you won’t have to manually enter your ad URLs.

If your tracking template does not contain a “?” append: “?keyword=link” like so:

Then, hit test and wait for the green light.

Once you’re done, you will start to see keyword data from AdWords inside CallRail.

Hooray! 🎉

Step 4: Add call goals to Google Analytics

If we’re being prudent, there should also be a conversion goal inside Google Analytics.

Your data will never truly be 100%, 100% of the time. There will be flaws. There will be gaps. There will be misalignment.

Triangulating data points from several different sources helps you handicap this risk.

That means we also want to integrate CallRail with Google Analytics while we’re at it. To do so, head to “Settings,” “Integrations,” and “Google Analytics.”

When there, drop in your Google Analytics ID and hit “Update.”

Next, head to Google Analytics to create a new call goal.

Go to “Admin” (the gear icon in the lower left-hand corner), then “View” and finally “Goals” in the upper-right corner:

Click for larger image.

Now select the bright red “+ New Goal” button.

Once inside, click on “Custom” down below because we’re about to get a little fancy.

Enter the name and select event.

Now we need to customize the event conditions to make sure your data will be labelled properly.

So drop “Phone” into the Category option.

And “Save” the new goal!

Step 5: Integrate CallRail with your CRM (like HubSpot) for full-funnel Attribution

Wouldn’t it be nice if you could now see which phone calls resulted in closed deals paying you the big bucks?

After all, you should be making strategic PPC decisions based on meaningful data (revenue, Cost Per Lead, etc.) and not just vanity metrics (new leads, Cost Per Click, etc.).

The good news is that you can with CallRail.

Head back into “Settings” and “Integrations”, then look for your favorite CRM.

We’ll use “HubSpot” in this example to show you how these integrations work.

Scroll down to HubSpot and hit the “Activate” button.

Then you’ll need to grab your HubSpot ID to finalize this integration.

So head to HubSpot, log in, and grab the “Hub ID” in the top right-hand corner of your screen.

Simply copy that number and head back to the CallRail HubSpot Integration screen, paste it in, and hit “Authorize.”

You can also select to create a new lead inside HubSpot each time someone calls. You won’t have their name and email at this point necessarily, but you can merge it on subsequent calls.

Next, HubSpot will ask you to select the account to link CallRail with and then “Grant access.”

And that’s it! Now, your calls will create new leads in HubSpot and integrate the data.

Step 6: Measuring campaign performance back to ad spend

Now you’ve completed all the hard work.

The only thing that’s left is to actually use the data once it starts rolling in.

When you log into CallRail, the dashboard right in front of you will list out some of the most recent activity.

Click for larger image.

Let’s break down this down (by number):

  1. This is your Keyword Pool name for each call
  2. The campaign keywords from that drove each click and then call (if there’s nothing showing up, it’s most likely organic as opposed to a PPC call)
  3. The specific campaigns (pulling in PPC data) that drove each click and call
  4. Your landing page where the call initiated
  5. And finally the Lead Status for each (so you can record the number of good, quality leads vs. the junk)

Why is this useful?

Now this data will help you figure out:

  • Which keywords are performing well and driving calls.
  • Which campaigns are performing well and driving calls.
  • Which landing pages are performing well and driving calls.
  • And where the F*@#$ %$ your customers are actually coming from!!!

You can now also view some of this data inside AdWords, too.

Go under “Tools” and look for “Conversions.”

Then you can now see AdWords phone calls ready to track through the CallRail integration we set up earlier.

And because we dot all i’s and cross all t’s, you can see this data inside Google Analytics now, too.

Log in and head over to “Behavior,” then “Events,” and finally “Top Events.”

Here you will see the phone call goal you created earlier in this article. If you click on that phone text link, you can see even deeper data:

Click for larger image.

The reporting format varies based on whether the call was received via a source tracking number or a keyword tracking number with the following attributes:

  • Source Tracker: Incoming call via [tracking number] – [source name]
  • Keyword Tracker: Incoming call via Keyword Tracker

Next, in the event action table, you can click on each action for more details.

Like the phone number that just called you.

And that’s it!

Phew, we made it.

Thanks for sticking around to the end. I think you deserve the rest of the day off.

Before I say goodbye…

Phone calls produce the best conversion rates of any sales channel. They eclipse lead gen data from your standard website form fill.

Phone calls from AdWords are especially lucrative because these people are often already at the bottom of the funnel; they’re ready to take action and sign up or get started immediately.

But if you’re not tracking any of them, you can’t determine which campaigns, individual landing pages, or keywords are driving the best ROI (and not just lead counts).

Thankfully, there’s CallRail + Unbounce. A match made in PPC heaven.

You can run through the steps listed in this article, finally close the phone call loop, and reclaim those conversions that are so rightfully yours — because you can’t take credit for conversions if you don’t know where they came from.


Unbounce

How to Protect Customer Data — and Your Company

digital_integrity_matters

Most of us have probably seen that commercial where the bank security guard stands idly by during a robbery, explaining that he’s just there for monitoring, not preventing. It’s a good illustration of how important it is for businesses to think about digital integrity holistically rather than one piece at a time.

 

Your online presence is the face your company shows the world. It’s your identity. And it tells customers as much about your credibility and integrity as any business strategy. Customers want to know that they can trust your content and what is behind it – that it says what it means, that it’s consistent, that it’s accurate, and that you stand by it. And they want to know how you’re going to protect the information they share with you.


Your online presence tells customers as much about your credibility as any business strategy, says @kpodnar.
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While developing a digital policy may not be at the top of your things-to-spend-time-and-money-on list, it really should be because the consequences of not having a policy are scary.

HANDPICKED RELATED CONTENT: Identity Matters: How Content Strategists Build Trust and Loyalty

Why is digital integrity important?

Let’s start with data breaches since that’s the issue that captures the most headlines. From forensics and fines to lawsuits and lost time, the expenses associated with a breach pile up quickly. And that’s just the beginning.

A distributed denial of service (DDoS) attack, for example, could prevent you from conducting business for a time. And if the attack slows your site’s load time, your customers may not do business with you. Research shows that nearly half of all customers won’t wait more than three seconds for a page to load. They click over to a competitor – and a lot won’t come back.

Then there’s a general lack of confidence. How are customers supposed to trust you with their business when you aren’t even taking care of your own digital security?


How can your subscribers trust you with their business if you can’t guard their personal data? @kpodnar
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Your online integrity is about a lot more than just protecting the audience’s personal information (although that’s important, too). It requires a multifaceted, holistic digital policy incorporated into your daily business processes.

Let’s look at what that means.

HANDPICKED RELATED CONTENT: The Democratization of Distrust Is Our Biggest Opportunity

Components of a holistic digital policy

Data collection

Brands slowly but surely have adopted a more-is-more mindset when it comes to data. The more data points, the better, right? Even at brick-and-mortar stores, it’s hard to make a purchase without being asked for name, address, phone number, email, or maybe even birthday. And, sure, your business can do a lot with that information in terms of market segmentation and analytics.

But … the more data you collect from your audience, the more you – and they – stand to lose if you suffer a breach. To put it in business terms, you need to do a risk-benefit analysis. If you’re truly using all the data you’re collecting – and the return on investment is worth the risk – fine. But if you’re collecting data just because you can, the risks quickly outweigh the benefits. Collect data only when it’s critical to your business.


Collect data only when it’s critical to your business, says @kpodnar.
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Questions to ask:

  • What information do we collect from our customers? Where do we keep it? How do we secure it?
  • Who wants the data (marketing, product development, etc.)? What do they do with it? Could others within our company use the same information to increase the benefits, making the risk worthwhile?
  • What information do we really need to collect from our customers, and why do we need it?
  • How does each data point enhance or support our business model?

Data storage

The natural result of collecting a lot of data is the need to store that data. And stored data is a liability. Do you really need to keep email addresses and purchase histories from people you haven’t connected with in years? Customer data collection isn’t a situation for, “Well, it might come in handy someday.” The safest remedy is to store only as much data as is critical to your business.

It might help to think of it this way: Imagine you had a breach, and you’re in a face-to-face meeting with a customer whose personal data was stolen. How comfortable would you be looking that customer in the eye and explaining your need for each data point?

Questions to ask:

  • What data do we store? Is there a business justification for each data point?
  • Where do we store our data? Who has access to it? What security measures are in place?
  • What are the risks of keeping the data? Does the data include enough points to be personally identifiable? If so, what obligation do we have to our customers?
  • If we do need to store multiple data points, how long do we need to keep them? (For example, do we need to keep a customer’s email address and other information after the conclusion of a trial period?) What processes can we use to make that happen? Should data automatically be deleted after a certain time or should there be a human review process?
  • Are the servers that store sensitive data separate from our servers on less-secure networks? Or could someone access sensitive data by hacking into a less-secure device?

Regulatory requirements

One of the toughest challenges of operating in a global economy is sorting through the applicable rules and regulations. The United States, for example, has laws regulating the collection, use, and storage of customer information. Many states also have their own regulations, some of which are stricter than the federal laws. And it becomes even more complex when your business crosses national boundaries.

To gain a perspective on how complex a process this can be, think about cloud-based services, which are, by nature, independent of a geographic location. What does that mean legally? Do regulations regarding data kept in that cloud service apply based on where the company is headquartered, where it has physical locations, where the customers lives, or where the servers with all of the data are stored? Or all of the above?

This is one area where it’s critical to get professional guidance, whether from an attorney or from a digital policy expert. There are just too many moving pieces to carry that much risk yourself.

Questions to ask:

Prepare for your initial meeting with a professional by jotting down as many relevant facts and questions as you can come up with, such as:

  • How do we figure out which regulations we must comply with? For example, what if we have neither offices nor servers in a given country, but we do have users who live there? What if we have a shared server in a country but conduct no other business there?
  • How frequently do these regulations change, and what’s the best way to keep up with these changes and incorporate them into our digital policy?
  • What are the penalties for a first violation in any given jurisdiction?
  • How can we be sure we’re not breaking any country’s data privacy laws?
  • What are some best practices that other companies have identified?

Incident monitoring and response

Having a good digital policy won’t necessarily stop a breach from happening, but it will go a long way toward mitigating the damages. It’s important to have a crisis response plan that includes everything from the discovery of a breach to communicating the situation to your customers (as well as to any relevant legal agencies). Your policy should identify the person responsible for each step of the response plan and include frequent re-evaluation to make sure each person is still in the same job and knows what to do.


A crisis response plan details how to notify your audience if a data breach occurs, advises @kpodnar.
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Questions to ask:

  • How do we become aware of a breach? Do we have systems that notify us immediately when unusual activity is detected, or do we only find out when we’re in crisis mode?
  • What do we do to stop an attack once it’s detected? Do the people responsible for mitigating an attack have the proper skills, training, and tools?
  • Who within the company needs to be notified, and in what order? If an attack is detected during overnight hours, can it wait until morning, or are there people who need to be alerted immediately?
  • If an attack is severe enough to cause a work stoppage, do we have a backup plan in place? Does everybody know what it is and how to launch it?
  • What regulations apply? Which authorities must be notified, and whose job is it to do that?
  • Whose responsibility is it to talk to the media?
  • What actions do we need to take on behalf of customers (such as notifying them that their data may have been compromised)?

External risks

As interconnected as businesses are these days, risks don’t exist only within your own walls. Any third party with access to any of your networks is a potential source of a breach. It’s important to think up and down your supply chain, and throughout your partner networks to make sure you’re not unintentionally creating a policy that for all practical purposes doesn’t really protect you.

Questions to ask:

  • What parties have access to our system (vendors, outsourcing partners, consultants, outsourced IT support, SaaS products, etc.)? What digital policies and security protocols do they have?
  • Does the external partner’s policy go far enough? Or have important questions been left unanswered?
  • Does the company follow the digital policy or does it just give lip service?
  • In the case of a breach that originates – intentionally or not – through a third-party provider, who’s liable? Whose response plan takes precedence? Who’s responsible for fines and customer compensation, if relevant?
  • Are the answers to the data security questions spelled out in our contracts?

Policy development

Gathering data is the first step. Getting the buy-in to create a digital policy and the authority to implement it is the next step. Usually, this process works best with a cross-functional team so that all interests can be represented.

Questions to ask:

  • Who are our stakeholders? Who will be affected by this policy?
  • What conflicting interests must be managed (such as legal vs. marketing)?
  • Do we have everything we need to know to craft a good policy? Is there anyone we forgot to include?
  • What could go wrong, and what can we do to prevent it?

Change management

Few people like change, and even fewer people like change that seems to be random and unnecessary. That’s even more true when that change makes a process more difficult and time-consuming. Selling the “why” of a digital policy is central to overcoming resistance.

Questions to ask:

  • Can we clearly and consistently articulate the importance of having a digital policy? (Hint: Employees are unlikely to accept “because our lawyers said so” as a compelling reason.)
  • Whose jobs are affected by these changes, and in what ways? What can we do to offset any unintended negative impact?
  • What might employees see as drawbacks of a digital policy, and what benefits can we communicate to counter that perception?

Plan implementation

This is where a lot of digital policies go wrong: Companies stop right before the finish line. But a policy never correctly implemented – or universally ignored – is riskier than not having a policy. That’s because a policy provides documented proof that your company was aware of the risks.


Data security plans go wrong when companies stop before the finish line (correct implementation). @kpodnar
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Questions to ask:

  • Where does the policy live? How do employees know where to find it when they need it? Do they have immediate access, or do they need to ask for authorization to access the files?
  • Is the policy easy to use? Is there a table of contents that an employee can use to go straight to the appropriate section? Is it searchable?
  • Who can make changes to the document, and are people without authorization to change it technically prevented from doing so?
  • How can we make the policy easier to use? Can we provide employees with a checklist or wizard? Can we incorporate it into our business processes so that much of the compliance happens behind the scenes? How can we make it easy for employees to comply with the policy and difficult to violate it?

Follow-up

“Have a digital policy” isn’t something you can scratch off your to-do list. It’s an ongoing process that must be revisited over the years as people, processes, and technologies change.

Questions to ask:

  • How can we make sure our digital policy is being used? How can we track compliance?
  • What corrective action do we take if the policy is being violated (intentionally or not)?
  • How do we make sure our policy keeps up with changing circumstances and new threats?

Conclusion

If I had one wish for companies struggling with their digital policies, it would be to look at the situation holistically. Think of it like parenting: We don’t prepare our kids for kindergarten and then congratulate ourselves on a job well done. Raising a child is an evolving process, one that includes everything from nutrition to exercise to education to character – and sometimes, eventually, to babysitting grandchildren. While you might not feel the same passion for your digital policy as you do for your children, both require supervision, care, and nurturing.

Sign up for our weekly Content Strategy for Marketers e-newsletter, which features exclusive stories and insights from CMI Chief Content Adviser Robert Rose. If you’re like many other marketers we meet, you’ll come to look forward to reading his thoughts every Saturday.

Cover image by Skeeze via pixabay.com

The post How to Protect Customer Data — and Your Company appeared first on Content Marketing Institute.

Content Marketing Institute

Data-Backed Advice for High-Converting Real Estate Landing Page Design [+ FREE TEMPLATE]

You’re designing a landing page for your Real Estate client, and you turn to “best practice” advice articles to help guide the way.

But there’s a nagging voice at the back of your mind:

Does this “best practice” advice apply indiscriminately to my industry? Does this author really know anything about my audience at all?

“Best practices” become “better practices” when they are industry-specific.

When our design team was recently wireframing new landing page templates for the Unbounce builder, they set out to create industry-specific templates that addressed this truth: different audiences belonging to different industries behave differently. They have different pains, different motivators and different disincentives.

Firm believers that data needs to inform design, our design team sourced their research in two key areas:

  1. Data from the Unbounce Conversion Benchmark Report: The report includes average conversion rates for 10 popular industries, as well as Machine Learning-powered recommendations around reading ease, page length, emotion and sentiment.
  2. High-converting customer landing pages: Our designers looked at the top 10 highest-converting Unbounce landing pages in those industries, and analyzed common design and copy elements across the pages.

Our design team then combined insight from these two key areas of research to build out content and design requirements for the best possible landing page template for each of the 10 industries.

One of these industries was Real Estate, and now we want to share their findings with you.

See a breakdown of their process for designing the Real Estate page template at the bottom of this post, or read on for their key findings about what converts in the Real Estate industry.

Which copy elements convert best in the Real Estate industry?

Word count

The data scientists and conversion rate optimizers who put together the Unbounce Conversion Benchmark Report found that for Real Estate lead capture landing pages, short n’ sweet is better: overall, they saw 33% lower conversion rates for longer landing pages.

This chart shows how the word count relates to conversion rates for the Real Estate vertical. On the x-axis we have word count — on the y-axis, conversion rate.

This was consistent with what the design team saw across high-converting Unbounce customer landing pages in Real Estate: pages were relatively short with concise, to-the-point copy.

Reading ease

The Unbounce Conversion Benchmark Report also revealed that in the Real Estate vertical, prospects want simple and accessible language. The predicted conversion rate for a landing page written with 6th grade level language was nearly double that of a page written at the university level.

This chart shows how conversion rates trend with changes to reading ease for the Real Estate Industry. On the x-axis we have the Flesch Reading Ease score — on the y-axis, conversion rate.
According to the Unbounce Conversion Benchmark Report, 41.6% of marketers in the Real Estate industry have at least one page that converts at less than 1.3% (in the 25th percentile for this industry). Download the report here to see the full data story on Real Estate and get recommendations for copy, sentiment, page length and more for nine additional industries.

Fear-inducing language

The Unbounce Conversion Benchmark Report used an Emotion Lexicon and Machine Learning to determine whether words associated with eight basic emotions (anger, anticipation, disgust, fear, joy, sadness, surprise and trust) affected overall conversion rates.

While these emotions did not seem to dramatically correlate with conversion rate in the Real Estate vertical, fear-based language was the exception. We saw a slight negative trend for pages using more fear-inducing terms:

This chart shows how the percentage of copy that evokes fear is related to conversion rates for the Real Estate vertical. On the x-axis we have the percentage of copy that uses words related to fear — on the y-axis, conversion rate.

If more than half a percent of your copy evokes feelings of fear, you could be hurting your conversion rates.

Here are some words commonly associated with fear on Real Estate lead capture landing pages: highest, fire, problem, watch, change, confidence, mortgage, eviction, cash, risk…

See the full list in the Unbounce Conversion Benchmark Report.

Calls to action

When our designers looked at the top 10 highest-converting Unbounce customer landing pages in the Real Estate vertical, they took a close look at the calls to action and found that:

  • Every page provided a detailed description of the offer
  • Almost all had a “request a call back” or “call us” option (other CTAs included “get more info,” “apply now” and “get the pricelist”)
  • Most did an excellent job of including button copy that reinforces what prospects get by submitting the form
If you use a “call us” CTA on your landing pages, make sure you try out our CallRail integration. This will help you track which calls are a result of your paid spend and landing pages!

Here are some examples of the forms and calls to action on some of our highest-converting Real Estate lead capture landing pages:

The usual suspects (benefits, social proof, UVP…)

Without much exception, the pages featured a lot of the copywriting elements that one would expect to see on any high-converting landing page (regardless of vertical):

  • Detailed benefits listed as bullet points
  • A tagline that reinforces the unique value proposition or speaks to a pain point:
  • And not surprisingly, testimonials. One page went above and beyond with a video testimonial:

Which design elements convert best in the Real Estate industry?

The highest-converting Real Estate landing pages included lots of imagery:

  • Beautiful hero shots of the interior and exterior of properties
  • Maps
  • Full-width photography backgrounds
  • Floor plans

Some examples:

Our designers also studied other design features as basic guidelines for the template they were then going to create.

While these specifics are meant to be taken with a grain of salt (you may already have brand colors and fonts!) they could serve as a good starting point if you’re starting completely from scratch and want to know what others are up to.

Many of the high-converting pages had:

  • San-serif fonts
  • Palettes of deep navy and forest green
  • Orange (contrasting) call to action buttons
The highest-converting landing pages in the Real Estate industry sit at 11.2%. If your Real Estate page converts at over 8.7%, you’re beating 90% of your competitors’ pages. See the breakdown of median and top conversion rates (and where you stand!) via the Unbounce Conversion Benchmark Report.

Behold, the template our designers created

After synthesizing all that research, our Senior Art Director Cesar Martínez took to his studio (okay, his desk), and drafted up this beautiful Real Estate landing page template:

Check out Unbounce’s Real Estate templates here. Already a customer? Log in and get started with the ALLHËR template right now.

Not only is the template beautiful, it was created by analyzing actual data: what makes for a high-performing landing page in the Real Estate industry via the Unbounce Benchmark Report and high-converting customer pages.

Footnote: The design process

Curious about the process our designers used to develop this data-backed Real Estate landing page template? Here are the steps they followed:

  1. For the 10 highest-converting customer landing pages, they analyzed all common elements (such as form, what type of information is collected, what type of offer, if there are any testimonials, etc). This allowed them to build their content requirements.
  2. They referred to the word count recommendations in the Unbounce Conversion Benchmark Report and designed for that word count limit.
  3. They referred to reading ease level recommendations for that specific industry from the Benchmark Report and shared the information with their copywriter.
  4. They sketched out a rough idea of their potential landing page template.
  5. They selected typography and colors relevant to the industry based on what was popular in the 10 examples.
  6. They named their imaginary company in the industry and sketched out some potential logos. They picked photography built out a moodboard.
  7. That helped them gather all the information they needed to build out their template!


Unbounce

Travel Marketers Have a Trust Problem

As a travel marketer or agency marketer servicing the travel industry, you have a tricky gig. You need to convince your prospects to spend thousands of dollars and precious vacation time.

Meanwhile, your prospects are increasingly wary of the legitimacy of your offers (thanks a lot, Fyre Fest).

Here’s to hoping your vacation is memorable, but not in a meme-worthy kind of way.

Your challenge then is to effectively convey trust on your travel landing pages. Doing so can help ease prospects’ conversion anxiety, resulting in more travel leads and sales for your business.

The importance of trust on your travel landing pages

We often talk about the importance of trust and credibility on your landing pages — this isn’t a new idea.

But for some industries, a lack of trust can have hugely detrimental effects on conversion rates.

In a recent analysis of 74,551,421 visitors to 64,284 lead generation landing pages created in the Unbounce platform, data scientists found that travel landing pages can realistically achieve conversion rates of at least 12%. Even more impressive is within the travel and tourism industry, the very best pages convert over 25% of their visitors (schwing!).

Notice the dramatic conversion rate difference between percentiles? If you’re part of that percentile getting 2.1% or lower conversion rates, your pages have lots of room for improvement. Image via the Unbounce Conversion Benchmark Report.

If you’re not hitting these benchmarks, it might be time to take a hard look at your marketing and ask yourself if you’ve done enough to make your prospects trust you.

And don’t worry if your answer is “No” or “I’m not sure.” We’ve compiled four data-backed ways to boost trust on your travel landing page. Use them as a jumping off point for your optimization efforts.

1. Bolster your copy with trust words

Using an Emotion Lexicon to analyze copy, Unbounce data scientists found evidence that visitors to travel landing pages have slight concerns about the legitimacy of the offers.

However, they also found that using at least 7% (and up to 10%) of your copy to establish trust could result in conversion rates that are up to 20% better.

Notice the uptick in conversion rate once trust-infused copy is used more liberally? Image via the Unbounce Conversion Benchmark Report.

Unbounce data scientists found that these are some of the words that impart trust on travel landing pages:

enjoy, perfect, secret, top, team, guide, save, personal, spa, food, planning, policy, provide, star, award, real, share, friendly, recommend, school

(Keep in mind, though, that these words were generated by an algorithm and should still be applied using common sense. Just adding the word “spa” to your page — especially if you don’t offer spa services — is not going to increase your conversions.)

The travel experts at Nordic Visitor do a great job of using trust words to build confidence on their Iceland site. It’s not a landing page per se, but the same principles apply.

“Team,” “planning,” “provide” and “personal” are all words found to positively convey trustworthiness. Adding these and other trust words to your copy could be the subconscious nudge your prospects need to convert.

Take stock of the trust words you’re using in your marketing, and particularly on your landing pages. If they’re looking a little sparse, test out using confidence-building words to describe destinations in detail.

2. Cut copy that brings up emotions of fear and anger

Just as trust words can drastically improve your conversion rates, words that subconsciously trigger fear or anger will have a negative impact on travel landing page conversion rates.

In fact, Unbounce data scientists found that if even 1% of page copy reminds your visitors of feelings of anger or fear, you could be seeing up to 25% lower conversion rates.

No one wants to be angry while on vacation. Image via the Unbounce Conversion Benchmark Report.

Words that may instill fear or anger in your prospects include:

limited, tree, money, hot, desert, endless, challenge, treat, fee, feeling, rail, stone, bear, buffet, bang, cash, cross, despair

So instead of…

“Feeling endless despair this Canadian winter? Warm yourself up with a limited-time-only vacation in the hot Mojave desert.”

Try…

“Escape the Canadian winter at a five-star award-winning vacation rental in sunny California.”

Get even more industry-specific emotion and sentiment copy suggestions

Download the Unbounce Conversion Benchmark Report to see how emotion and sentiment may be impacting conversion rates in your industry.
By entering your email you expressly consent to receive other resources to help you improve your conversion rates.

3. Leverage social proof to build visitor trust

Persuading your prospects to put their trust in you is tricky business, and it’s even trickier when it comes to travel, because they’re likely working with a tight budget and only a few weeks of precious vacation. They don’t want to take a leap of faith — they want a sure thing.

A proven strategy for easing prospect anxiety is to use social proof. It’s the “everybody’s doing it” mentality that helps convince your prospects to convert.

Testimonials

When you let your satisfied customers sing your praises, your credibility goes through the roof. Including testimonials on your travel landing page can have a positive impact on how trustworthy your prospects perceive you to be, but not all testimonials are created equal.

To best enhance your chance of conversion, heed the following testimonial commandments:

  • Be specific
  • Include a photo of the person
  • Avoid hyperbole (i.e., This pedicure literally saved my life!)
  • Choose testimonials that demonstrate the transformative effect of your product or service on the lives of your users

Nordic Visitor takes it one step further with a video testimonial from several happy customers:

Don’t tell your prospects how great you are, show them with real live, happy customers.

Reviews

Similar to testimonials, including reviews on your travel landing page can help convey trust to your prospects.

The luxury travel designers of Jacada Travel have embedded reviews from Trustpilot, a reputable online review community, directly into their landing page.

Awards

If you recall, the word “award” is associated with trust on travel landing pages. So if your company or client has won any reputable awards, be sure to flaunt ‘em.

Tour guide company Kensington Tours not only includes several award crests on their travel landing page, they also mention in their Adwords ad that they’re a National Geographic award winner.

Highlight awards strategically to build confidence in your offers.

4. Security measures

Persuasive trust-infused copy and social proof are wonderful, but when you’re collecting travel leads and even money, you need to assure your prospects that their data and money is safe.

There are many ways to do this, but the two most impactful strategies are to enable SSL (Secure Sockets Layer) and to include trust seals.

SSL

SSL creates an encrypted link between your landing pages and your visitor’s browser. It’s identified by the little lock icon and the “https” (vs. http) in the top left-hand side of your browser search bar.

Enabling SSL on all your web properties (but especially on your lead gen and ecommerce landing pages) assures your visitors that they’re not at risk of being hacked.

Psst: SSL is available on all paid Unbounce plans. Don’t publish a landing page without it!

Trust seals

Trust seals help to reinforce the message that your landing page is secure. These can be obtained by whichever third-party security vendor handles your SSL certificate, and easily added to your travel landing page with a few lines of JavaScript.

Nordic Visitor nails it yet again with a trust seal from GeoTrust and a TripAdvisor Certificate of Excellence 2017, further reinforcing their credibility.

All aboard the Conversion Cruise

A lack of trust in any industry can hurt conversion rates, but in the travel industry the stakes are extra high.

Fortunately, this means the opportunities to improve your conversion rates are plenty. And if you nail the whole trust thing down, you could be seeing some of the highest conversion rates across any industry.

Leveraging a combo of effective copy, social proof and security measures, you can make your prospects forget about the stress associated with booking a vacation. Skip that trip to Poor Conversions-ville and instead put your feet up with a Mai Tai in hand on the Conversion Cruise.

For even more data-backed conversion insights in the travel industry, or for insights into industries such as health, finance, higher education and more, download the Unbounce Conversion Benchmark Report.

Get data-backed conversion insights across 10 popular industries

Download the Unbounce Conversion Benchmark Report to see how your conversion rates stack up against the competition — and how to improve them.
By entering your email you expressly consent to receive other resources to help you improve your conversion rates.
Launching a travel landing page from scratch? Try out one of our travel landing page templates, designed specifically to boost conversions.


Unbounce

Future-Proof Your Marketing with Call to Action Magazine

The Call to Action Magazine
A good marketer is like a doomsday prepper (bear with me here…)

Instead of preparing for a global cataclysm, learning about water storage and building bunkers, they’re constantly on the lookout for ways they can proof their marketing for, or get ahead of, inevitable and dramatic changes to the marketing landscape.

Frequent and mysterious algorithm changes. New ad platform features. Emerging trends, dying fads. Amidst all this, only marketers who understand these new conditions — then adapt and innovate within them — will see exponential returns.

At Unbounce, we’ve been really lucky to have a network of expert marketers around to ask about the always-changing marketing landscape. We can turn to forward-thinking strategists like Mirum’s Mitch Joel, Moz’s Rand Fishkin, Love Your Customer’s Claire Suellentrop, and even our in-house-experts, like Alexa Hubley, Carl Schmidt and CRO Michael Aagaard. We ask them things like:

  • What does the ever-increasing prominence of Artificial Intelligence and Machine Learning mean for marketers and their jobs?
  • Are “tried-and-true” frameworks like the buyer persona still relevant, or are there new ways of digging deeper to speak more closely to my target market?
  • Have traditional SEO tactics become completely outdated? Why are the most successful SEOs now becoming well versed in conversion rate optimization?
  • How can you use data to inform your marketing without letting personal biases get in the way?
  • Should marketing stop after the conversion? (Or is customer marketing where it’s at?)

These are questions we’ve seen tossed around recently in our newsfeeds and at conferences.

So we set out to help answer them.

In Call to Action Magazine, we aim to address these questions and dig into some of the recommendations the experts in our network have shared — those that will help you create exceptional marketing no matter what new algorithm comes along.

So, what do you say? Do you want to get lost in the rubble… or do you want to learn how you can future-proof your marketing?

Ready to Future-Proof Your Marketing?

Call to Action Magazine is filled with recommendations from marketing experts to help your marketing thrive — no matter what algorithm gets changed tomorrow.
By accessing the magazine, you’ll receive actionable marketing content from Unbounce. 
You can unsubscribe at any time.


Unbounce

How Your PPC Strategy Should Differ on the AdWords Search VS Display Network

As we ramp up for Unbounce’s upcoming PPC week, we thought we’d revisit some of our favorite PPC posts from the archives. This post was originally published in June 2015 but still rings true. Enjoy!

Have you ever been kicking so much AdWords Search Network butt that it made you raise your chest and gave you instant super powers?

You know, the type of confidence that makes you walk with a pep in your step and hair bouncing around?

Confidence
Kinda like this mini-horse. Image source.

Feels AMAZING.

But sometimes you hit a ceiling with the keywords you’re bidding on, and there’s literally no more Search Network traffic out there (since your impression shares are all around 98%).

You immediately think of using the AdWords Display Network, simply because you know there’s more traffic, cheaper clicks and much more potential ROI just waiting to be grabbed.

dog-pee-to-claim-land-FACE-Low-Cost-SpayNeuter-Clinic-FB
Actually, don’t do that. It won’t get you conversions. Image source.

As you may already know, the AdWords Display Network (also known as the Google Display Network/GDN) is the biggest digital ad network in the world. It allows you to advertise on publisher properties like websites, mobile apps, Gmail, YouTube and more.

Compared to the AdWords Search Network, the Display Network also houses the largest viewership of any online platform. YouTube itself has a monthly viewership equivalent to 10 Super Bowls – so it shouldn’t come as a surprise that display advertising is said to capture 34% of all online ad spend and about 10% of all marketing budgets.

But with new channels come different strategies.

What you’re doing on the AdWords Search Network will not perform the same way on the Display Network.

If the Display Network is uncharted territory for you, here’s how you need to adjust your current PPC strategy to get the results you want.

Different user behavior calls for a different strategy

The biggest difference between the AdWords Search Network and Display Network can be seen in the sweet visual I had my designer custom-make below.

unbounce-_chuck_norris

In the “Chuck Norris” action cycle above, you can see how the power of keyword intent in the Search Network can put people really close to taking action (AKA converting), but the Display Network typically has visitors who are a few steps behind.

This is because people who are on the Display Network aren’t actively searching for what you offer. As Erin Sagin puts it, they’re rarely in “shopping mode.”

Instead, Display Network visitors are most likely in the research phase when your display ads are hitting them. They’re on forums, blog posts, or watching that YouTube vid trying to gather enough information to make a decision. They don’t know what they need yet, so your job is create awareness.

If you’re selling more of an “emergency” service like being a locksmith or roadside assistance, then you’ll have a hard time using the Display Network to your advantage.

This is simply because ads on the Display Network are not triggered from a search engine like text ads on the Search Network are. The Search Network works as a demand harvester (your ads are grabbing the intent), while the Display Network works as a demand generator (your ads are creating awareness).

So how do you change your strategy from the Search Network to also make the AdWords Display Network a money making machine?

Create trust and deliver value

As I mentioned, your Display Network ads could be interrupting someone who’s reading the news, reading a blog or watching a video.

Because of that, the level of commitment it takes for someone to stop what they’re doing, click your ad, then call you or fill out your landing page form is high and much more unlikely compared to the Search Network. In other words, you can’t expect to have the same campaign conversion rates on the Display Network as you do on the Search Network.

If you’re offering “Free Quotes” on the search network because people are actively searching for someone who can relieve their problem, it might actually be better for you to lead with valuable educational material (i.e. your content) on the Display Network.

A perfect example of this is my crush of an email marketing company, Emma.

Emma uses the AdWords Search Network to drive sign ups, but they use the Display Network to give you great, fun and actionable value. Here’s what some of their Display Ads look like (click on them to go to the accompanying landing page):

emma-gif-1

emma-gif-2

emma-gif-3

I reached out to Cynthia Price (the Director of Marketing at Emma) and she gave me this golden nugget about how they use the AdWords Display Network:

We get that someone seeing a display ad isn’t necessarily interested in learning more about our product just yet. It’s all about brand awareness, and more importantly for us, trust-building.

So we offer content that we think will be valuable and helpful to our audience’s marketing efforts. It starts our brand relationship off on the right foot, helps them understand the strength of our expertise and paves the way for us to nurture or retarget them in the future.

You already know that content marketing’s core foundation is about adding true value.

Your display ads should be no different.

On the Display Network, your first goal is to establish trust by giving value, and then nurture the visitors down the road to become paying customers.

Revisit your targeting options

Once you have a great piece of content that delivers value and educates your audience, it’s time to figure out how to target it to people who actually want it.

Let’s have a look at the five targeting options that’ve been found to drive the biggest impact on the Display Network.

To illustrate how each one works, let’s pretend you’re a dog walker. Your name is Lori and you live in Huntington Beach, CA. You’ve been advertising on the AdWords search network and this is your landing page:

lori-the-dog-walker

What are your best targeting options?

Placement targeting

Placement targeting allows you to advertise directly on certain publisher sites. This means you could have your ad show up on Forbes or CNN if you’d like.

Best practice advice: Make sure the website or page’s audience is relevant to what you’re offering. Don’t shotgun approach all of CNN – sniper shot individual placements within CNN if you can.

Contextual/Keyword targeting

Contextual/Keyword targeting allows you to give Google your keywords and have it automatically find relevant placements for your ads.

Best practice advice: Mix this with placement targeting to be even more laser focused with your targeting.

Topic targeting

Topic targeting allows you to go more broad than regular placement targeting.

For this, you could target the topic of Pets & Animals directly and cast a wider net, with the possibility of your ads showing up on FerretLovers.com (yes, that’s a real site).

Best practice advice: See what Topic targeting gives you, then exclude unwanted placements from your campaign once things are running and data is coming in.

Interest targeting

Interest targeting is kind of similar to topic targeting, but instead of judging the context of websites, interest targeting tracks behaviors of web users. This targeting method can be even more vague than topic targeting.

Best practice advice: Every industry is different, so always test things out and see the performance. Be quick to pause and exclude irrelevant placements once data comes in.

Combining targeting methods

This is where you’ll have a lot of fun and potentially get better results.

You’re not locked into using just one targeting method with the AdWords Display Network. In fact, Alistair Dent over at Search Engine Watch and many others highly recommend never going with just one targeting option, but combining multiple together.

You can target certain placements with the addition of contextual/keyword targeting to tell Google that you only want your ads to show when a visitor is on CNN and reading an article about dog walking.

Or you can target different interests with contextual/keyword targeting as well.

Create multiple ad groups, each with their own targeting specifications, and see how they perform against each other. Once you’ve hit your stride and conversions are coming in, pause the other ad groups that aren’t working, and make variations of the ad group targetings that are working for you, so that you can squeeze more out of your PPC dollars.

Wrapping up

Wow! Quite a bit of info huh?

Now that you clearly know why your Display Network strategy has to be different from your Search Network strategy, what do you have to lose? Get started now. Try different targeting combinations, and never forget to offer true value.

What have you found to be the best driver of conversions on the AdWords Display Network? How different are your strategies compared to the ones we talked about?


Unbounce

These Are the PPC Metrics That Actually Matter

As we ramp up for Unbounce’s upcoming PPC week, we thought we’d revisit some of our favorite PPC posts from the archives. This post was originally published in May 2015 but is as relevant as ever. Dig in!

If you’re anything like me, you’ve participated in a couple of DIY home improvement projects. At the beginning of these projects, with YouTube training videos as my sidekick, I have an irrational sense of confidence in my handyman abilities.

When I’m tracking down my supplies at the local hardware store, I often find the products priced and displayed as “good,” “better” and “best.”

Good,-Better,-Best-Image-V2_02

The frugal side of me tries to argue that “good” is good enough, but is there something about the “best” product that will secure my DIY victory?

With PPC advertising, we often face the same dilemma; we need to decide which metrics are “best” to measure the success of our campaigns. There’s a wealth of content and opinions on how to measure PPC success, which can get confusing.

This post will help you understand how different metrics can paint very different pictures of PPC campaign performance.

I’ll show how traffic-focused metrics can be a good starting point, how conversion-focused metrics are even better and how ROI-focused metrics provide the most complete picture for making meaningful changes to your campaigns.

Let’s dig in.

Good PPC metrics are traffic-focused

Many advertisers will default to looking at the click-through rate or cost per click when determining the success of a campaign. AdWords provides a lot of traffic-focused metrics that are incredibly useful, including underused gems like device segmentation and impression share.

And while those are definitely a good start, it’s important not to get so distracted that you lose sight of your basic business goals: generating a profit.

My agency has serviced or audited over 1,000 AdWords accounts. Believe it or not, almost half of them had not set up conversion tracking.

Conversion tracking allows you to measure conversion actions like a purchase or a lead submission in your ad platform, usually by placing a code snippet on a thank you or order confirmation page.

Without that piece of code, the only metrics you can measure are related to traffic, such as search impressions, clicks and click-through rates. Let’s look at an example to see why this is problematic.

What traffic-focused metrics tell you

Imagine you’re a mortgage company and each new paying customer is worth on average $ 3,500 in revenue with 50% in gross margin.

If you haven’t set up conversion tracking, you’ll mostly end up looking at reports like this:

chart1_new

If we’re only looking at traffic-focused metrics, our top campaign seems to be Campaign 5, which has the most clicks, the best click-through rate and the lowest cost per click.

Meanwhile, Campaign 4 has expensive clicks – which looks like a red flag!

But the truth is this data alone can’t really tell us whether the campaigns are successful to a company’s bottom line. For our mortgage company, we need to know whether the clicks are actually translating into useful leads.

Better PPC metrics are conversion-focused

If you’re already using conversion tracking, pat yourself on the back: you’re better off than much of the competition.

If you’re not, then get conversion tracking set up immediately. It’s easy to set up on most platforms like Google AdWords and Bing Ads (and if you’re using Unbounce you can put the tracking code right on a built-in thank you page).

Think beyond web conversions

Conversion tracking is more than just web leads and sales: among new accounts I’ve audited or onboarded, I’ve found that approximately 75% of advertisers who take phone leads don’t track them as conversions.

For many industries, phone calls are the main source of leads, so it’s critical to include calls in your conversion tracking! Many call tracking platforms have built-in ways of setting this up, and Google has a solution for AdWords advertisers here.

Call leads are more valuable for some businesses than for others, so you’ll want to keep in mind that not all types of conversions are necessarily equal – but the first step is making sure everything is tracked and measured.

What conversion-focused metrics tell you

Let’s say our mortgage company joins the big leagues and sets up conversion and call tracking. Here’s how that report looks:

Better_final
Now we can track how many people are actually signing up for the service, not just clicking our ads.

Now we can start identifying our top-performing campaigns using cost per lead data (cost per conversion in Google AdWords). You’ll notice that Campaign 5 has the best cost per conversion, so it still looks like our top performer. Campaign 4 still looks like trouble.

But while conversions are great, at the end of the day what really matters is whether leads became paying customers.

Conversions tell us how many leads our company got, but not how many actually signed up to refinance their homes or how much revenue they brought in.


Your PPC campaigns aren’t just about clicks. Don’t lose sight of what matters: generating a profit.
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The best PPC metrics are ROI-focused

For marketers who want to use the most meaningful data, let’s move to the golden metric: actual ROI!

That means tracking leads from click to close and measuring revenue on a per-lead basis. When you understand which campaigns, ads and keywords are actually generating revenue, you’ll be way ahead of competitors who have no idea where they’re making or losing money.

What ROI-focused metrics tell you

Let’s say our mortgage company decides to figure out exactly which leads are earning revenue. We can track specific leads in our CRM back to each campaign, set up separate phone numbers for each campaign and record which calls led to sales.

Using our customer value numbers from above, we can calculate the following report:

Best_final
We calculated revenue by having our CRM capture the Campaign ID in Google Analytics, then created unique phone numbers for every campaign so we could track every sale back to its source. Then we calculated the revenue value of every customer attributed to a PPC campaign.

Suddenly Campaign 4, which looked so bad before, is now our hero! Not only does it have the best ROI, it brings in the most revenue and the most sales — and that’s with the fewest conversions and second-fewest clicks.

Now we know something much more useful than cost per conversion — we know how valuable a conversion is. We know where to focus our marketing efforts to maximize revenue, and where we can make improvements that impact the bottom line.

We could then respond by allocating more budget to Campaigns 4 and 5.

Meanwhile, Campaign 3 gets a lot of traffic and conversions but has a poor ROI, so we can get to work at rewriting ads and landing pages to better qualify those leads.

Those are the kinds of changes that have meaningful results!

3 simple ways to track and measure your PPC ROI

The example above mirrors what we often see in the lead generation space: more expensive leads can often be the most qualified and produce the most revenue. But without breaking down campaign ROI you never know.


Costly PPC leads are often most qualified. Break down campaign ROI before you do anything drastic.
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So how do you move beyond conversions and start focusing on ROI?

Here are a few simple ways to get started:

  1. Call tracking: As mentioned above, get a call tracking solution that lets you track PPC calls independently and preferably at the keyword level. AdWords has a feature that lets you set it up on your landing pages here. Then make sure you’re reviewing calls to see which incoming leads are converting into sales.
  2. CRM integration for lead generation: A good CRM will integrate with any PPC platform, so you can look at customers and know which campaigns brought them to you. To determine ROI, compare sales data to the metrics in your PPC campaigns to get cost vs expected revenue.

    Getting this set up depends on your specific CRM, but here’s how to get started with Zoho, Infusionsoft, Salesforce, and Hubspot. Unbounce also has built-in hooks for integrating with most CRMs.

  3. Dynamic revenue tracking for ecommerce: The nice thing about ecommerce is that platforms like AdWords allow you to set a conversion value for specific products, so you can compare revenue and learn your ROI right from AdWords. Don’t miss out on this if your site includes a customer checkout process.

Every metric matters

PPC marketing leaders know that all the metrics we’ve discussed are valuable – they work to improve the three categories over time, while focusing most of their efforts on ROI to move their profitability in the right direction.

Traffic data like impressions, clicks and cost per click tell you how much search demand there is for your service and how many people are responding to your ads.

Better metrics like conversion data tell you how effective your ads and landing pages are at generating leads, as well as how much your leads cost.

But nothing tops actual ROI data: how much conversions are worth to your company’s bottom line. As we’ve seen, that kinda of data lets you focus on making changes where you can make the biggest difference!

At the end of the day, the key is to look at the right metrics for the right situations and use that data to make the most meaningful changes to your campaigns.


Unbounce

The Cost Per Lead Calculator – Better Allocate Your PPC Spend

The pay-per-click landscape has become so saturated that only the most analytical marketers are able to continuously turn a profit from their paid search, display and social campaigns.

Data-driven marketers who are able to effectively manage PPC campaigns to a target cost per conversion (a.k.a. cost per lead) will continue to see campaigns with a predictable, repeatable profit margin.

Everybody else is most likely paying too much to acquire customers.

As it stands, this means that more sophisticated and aggressive PPC marketers will eventually find the “ceiling” price for a click and will be forced to find operational efficiencies and higher conversion rates to improve their margins. Less savvy PPC marketers will be forced to find cheaper, less qualified traffic sources or get out of the PPC game altogether.

The most important metrics for PPC marketers

The PPC equation
Cost per click (CPC) and conversion rate (CR) are the two most important factors for improving the cost per conversion. The problem is, they are independent variables and don’t always move in unison.

As costs per click rise, cost per conversion will also rise assuming conversion rate stays constant. Therefore,
marketers that focus on optimizing for lower CPCs and/or higher conversion rates will consistently achieve better results and remain competitive.

Should you focus on improving cost per click or conversion rate?

Ideally, both! But knowing how to set the right expectations and manage your time is a bit trickier. Our clients typically understand the relationships between these three variables but sometimes the details get a little murky when combined with all the other PPC metrics that matter to campaign performance.

At Workshop Digital, we built this simple but powerful calculator to help our teams understand and explain the relationship between cost per click, conversion rate and cost per conversion:

CPL Calculator
Click to view the calculator (and read on to learn how to use it).

Our clients love it and we’re offering it up today to help you prioritize your time to achieve a target cost per lead for your PPC campaigns. As I mention in the video below, the calculator is a great way to determine where to focus your optimization efforts (whether that be in improving your ads or the conversion rate on your landing pages).

Video: See how to use the cost per lead calculator

Focus on the right metrics to beat the competition

PPC marketers often become enamored with surface-level metrics like click-through rate, average position or Quality Score. These data points are helpful in the right contexts but they don’t directly impact cost per conversion.

If you don’t focus on improving your cost per conversion with smart bidding and conversion rate optimization, ultimately you risk losing customers to your more efficient, conversion-focused competitors. Grab the calculator and run your ideal vs. current numbers today.


Unbounce

Master Your Next Feature Launch: How Vimeo Uses Unbounce Landing Pages to Go to Market Faster

You’re a product marketer and it’s five weeks away from a major launch.

The office is buzzing with excitement and tensions are rising by the day. Your marketing team is busy prepping all the essential pieces in your marketing launch toolkit, from email communications to paid advertising to PR initiatives and beyond.

But something’s missing.

Your website needs updating to reflect the launch of your new feature or product… and then you need somewhere to send your paid campaign traffic.

If you’re relying on your developers to build a new page for you, it could take weeks (or longer). Besides, shifting your devs’ focus away from the product launch probably isn’t the best use of their time. Adding work to their plates could mean having to delay going to market (and miss your launch deadlines) — and that could be deadly for business.

The marketing team at Vimeo has experienced this stress first-hand. Garrett Bugbee, Manager of Search and International Marketing, recently described to me how product launches have put a strain on his team in the past:

We had a huge creative backlog, especially during product launches. We relied on our devs to build our pages for us. It was a slow and painful process, from design to the kick-off meetings and then actually waiting for it to be built and QA’d… It was a massive issue.

Fast forward to today, Garrett and his team have removed many of these pre-launch bottlenecks. When it came time to launch their new product, Vimeo 360, they’d mastered the art of going to market with new products on time and on budget.

So what’s Vimeo’s secret recipe to making every product launch a smash hit?

Garrett teases at it in the video below. Have a look, or read on for the blueprint to their success.

Meet Vimeo and their latest product, Vimeo 360

As one of the internet’s most popular video sharing websites, Vimeo attracts more than 100 million unique visitors per month and is home to over 50 million creators worldwide (and counting).

As their popularity increases so too does the competition.

In order to stay on top, Vimeo has to evolve and innovate. With at least four new video products or features being introduced to the platform each year, a failed launch for Vimeo could mean a loss of thousands (dare we say millions) in company dollars, so there’s infinite pressure to get it right — every time.

You can imagine then, the pressure that Garrett (the hero from our intro) must have felt when he and his team set out to launch Vimeo 360, a new product that allows users to upload 360-degree videos in stunning high quality:

Because some of Vimeo’s competitors were already dabbling in 360-degree video, Garrett knew they had to launch quickly — and with a splash:

It’s a tool that other platforms have already, and it’s something that we wanted to give our creators so they have a new venue for expression and a new way to produce, make and showcase content.

Removing bottlenecks from the campaign launch

Vimeo’s main goal for the 360 launch was to drive engagement, measured by new subscribers and 360 video uploads.

While part of their homepage was to briefly feature Vimeo 360, Garrett and his team wanted to build out a page to better explain the product and all the amazing things it could do, including:

  • An example of a 360 video for prospects who were not yet familiar with the technology (shown above)
  • A showcase of 360 video content created by some of Vimeo’s power users
  • A detailed breakdown of features that make Vimeo 360 stand a cut above the rest (high-quality resolution, intuitive controls, powerful integrations)
  • A promo for their 360 video school, which teaches creators of all stripes to make better videos

That’s a lot of heavy lifting for a website that is also serving a general audience, so Garrett and his team turned to Unbounce to create a click-through landing page for their campaign:

Garrett’s team used Unbounce design features like parallax scroll to appeal to his visually-inclined user base. Click to view full-length landing page.

Beautiful isn’t it?

Garrett explained why empowering his marketing team to build this page themselves was key:

The big benefit here is the flexibility we have to produce a marketing-specific landing page without the help of our engineering team.

Our devs get to focus on building a great product, and we can focus on designing a page built specifically for marketing purposes without pulling our front-end devs away from their work. We can go to market a lot faster by parallel-pathing both the product build and the page build.


Don’t pull devs away from work – your marketing team can build launch landing pages themselves.
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The best part? The campaign landing page that the Vimeo marketing team created drove engagement, which was the campaign goal.

Garrett explains:

[Using scroll mapping,] we saw people scrolling all the way down the page, interacting with the content throughout. It really achieved the goal which was to drive engagement, not just with our paid subscribers but with everybody on the platform.

Better performing paid and social advertising campaigns

A beautiful, engaging landing page is well and good, but at the end of the day, your boss wants hard numbers that show that your campaigns performed.

Since adding dedicated campaign landing pages to their marketing launch toolkit, Vimeo has also seen better results for their paid and social advertising campaigns.

Some paid ads created by Vimeo for Facebook, Instagram, LinkedIn, the Google Display Network and DoubleClick Bid Manager.

Before Unbounce, Garrett humbly admits that they were letting their website get in the way of their campaign success:

Before Unbounce, we simply directed prospects to a page [on our website] with a pricing grid, and that’s pretty extreme to just throw that in someone’s face right away.

But now that Vimeo is sending paid traffic to product launch-specific landing pages like the one above (as opposed to generic pages like their /upload/ page and homepage), their campaigns are kicking serious butt. Check out these impressive results:

  • 730% increase in subscribers from 360-related paid keywords
  • 4529% increase in total video uploads from 360-related paid keywords

Bonus: Dedicated landing pages aren’t only bringing Vimeo better campaign results — Garrett explained that they’re also improving user experience and Google’s relevance score:

Unbounce has allowed us to target specific landing pages for top keywords, which is a huge win. I think that this one of the best use cases for Unbounce.

You can use Dynamic Text Replacement or make specific pages, and you just target your top terms, it’s highly relevant… I have complete control of that experience and that’s the marketer’s dream.

Unbounce’s Dynamic Text Replacement (DTR) feature gives Garrett and his team the capability to swap out text on their landing page — so that their ads and landing pages present exactly what visitors searched for.

Unbounce’s Ryan Engley explains how Dynamic Text Replacement works. See DTR in action here.

That level of message match across the entire buyer journey is key to strong PPC performance.

When prospects click on an ad and see a landing page with a headline that matches exactly what they searched for, they’re reassured that they’ve made a “good click” and are more likely to stick around (and even convert) — and that in turn positively impacts Quality Score in AdWords.

What you can learn from Vimeo’s success

If there’s one thing we’ve learned from Vimeo’s 360 campaign, it’s this:

Yes, product launches are a lot a pressure, but they don’t have to be painfulnot when marketing teams are empowered to move nimbly without bottlenecks.

According to Garrett, it’s all about focusing on your core competencies:

With Unbounce, we can now generate marketing-specific landing pages quickly and easily and translate those across different languages.

It takes the pressure off our devs and engineers, and lets them focus on what’s core — what’s vital to the business — which is building video tools for creators. We handle the marketing side.

By making Unbounce landing pages an essential part of your marketing launch toolkit, not only can you gain the competitive edge by going to market faster, you’ll also:

  • Free up dev resources so they can focus on building and innovating your product
  • Convert more prospects by sending paid traffic to relevant, high-converting pages
  • Create beautifully designed pages that showcase your product in the best light possible
  • Make your boss really happy by saving the company precious time and money

And that folks, is why you should NSAPLCWADLP… Never Start A Product Launch Campaign Without A Dedicated Landing Page. 😉


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