Tips for Optimizing SEM Efforts, Part 2

In the second and final part of this series, I examine ways to segment your customer base for targeted advertising as well as how remarketing fits into search marketing plans. (For part one, click here.)

Paid search: Slicing the pie to stretch the budget
As the search marketing industry continues to boom, paid search budgets are ballooning. Top spenders have increased their paid search advertising threefold since 2010, according to the Search Engine Marketing Professionals Organization (SEMPO). This means competing for popular keywords can be an expensive proposition, but there are also more ways than ever to segment a search audience. To maximize the relevance of your messaging and your return on investment, take full advantage of the tools available for targeted ad spending.

Mobile search: the new frontier
The explosion of mobile device usage has ushered in a whole new frontier of paid search opportunities. Nearly a third of consumers say they use mobile search more than desktop search, and 49 percent of mobile searchers say they’ve gone on to make purchases on their devices, according to Performics. Mobile search is likely to be an important factor during the holiday season.

Spending on mobile paid search advertising is forecasted to total 25 percent of all search advertising by the end of this year. Even still, mobile paid search remains cost effective, with costs per click lower than on desktop browsers. The potent combination of cost effectiveness and audience growth makes mobile paid search a good investment. To maximize the effectiveness of your campaigns for mobile users and devices, consider the following tips:

1. Segment for tablet buyers as well as smartphone users. Sales and conversion rates on tablets are markedly higher than on smartphones. Tablets comprise 3.2 percent of all web sales, compared with 1.5 percent for smartphones, with conversion rates on tablets higher than on smartphones. The cost per click for paid search on tablets is slightly higher than for smartphones, but overall ROI is higher, too. Take advantage of this by allocating paid search dollars to tablets if your target audience uses these devices.

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