Tuesday, April 25, 2006

Google, Yahoo Grow Search Share
GOOGLE AND YAHOO ARE INCREASING their market share of search, while MSN now lags even further behind, according to new data by Nielsen//NetRatings. Overall, search users conducted 5.9 billion searches last month, up 36 percent from March of 2005, according to Nielsen//NetRatings. But the two largest search engines--Google and Yahoo-saw even higher growth. Google searches increased 41 percent, from 2.1 billion in March 2005 to 2.9 billion last month; Yahoo searches grew 47 percent, to 1.3 billion last month from 907.8 million one year ago. MSN, meanwhile, grew by just 9 percent year-over-year, 5rom 592.2 million to 643.8 million.

Friday, April 21, 2006

Your Prospects Increasingly Dislike Registration Forms

"Typical data: ThomasNet's Industrial Purchasing Barometer study, released in August, revealed "industrial buyers are growing increasingly frustrated with the lack of privacy they are experiencing online." Although 90% of industrial buyers shop online, they are increasing demanding "anonymity when they search for products online, and in many cases, that desire for anonymity is not being respected." ThomasNet noted,
77% of respondents have a "Don't call us, we'll call you" philosophy online.
56% of respondents do not want vendors to contact them until they have made the initial contact.

81% of respondents said they would not return, or would be unlikely to return, to a Web site that reveals their identities to suppliers.
21% of respondents do not want to be contacted at all. "

Thursday, April 20, 2006

One In Five Say Web Ads Most Effective

MORE THAN ONE IN FIVE U.S. adults, or 22 percent, say the Internet is the most effective way to grab their attention about a product or service, according to a report released Wednesday by Burst Media.

More Than Half Say The Internet is Their Primary Source of Product Information.

The study also found that the Web far outpaces television as a primary source for information about products and services, with 57 percent of respondents saying that the Net is where they turn first to research products they might purchase.

The most striking difference in use of the Internet for product research occurs between income segments. Use of the Internet to gather product information rises dramatically as household income (HHI) increases – going from one-half (50.6%) of respondents reporting HHI less than $35,000 to fully two-thirds (69.2%) of respondents reporting HHI of $75,000 or more. (Chart 1)
Local Web Spending Predicted To Reach $5.8 Billion

LOCAL ONLINE AD SPENDING SURGED to $4.8 billion last year, a 78 percent increase from 2004's $2.7 billion, according to a new report by Borrell Associates. The report further predicts that online ad spending this year will climb 21 percent to reach $5.8 billion.
"Last year's growth spurt was reminiscent of that seen at the height of the dot-com frenzy in 1999-2000, when many local media companies had just finished building out their Web sites and began selling online advertising in earnest," stated the report, "What Local Web Sites Earn: 2006 Survey."

For the study, Borrell examined revenues at 2,266 local media properties, including 696 daily newspapers, 148 weeklies, 1,154 radio stations, 437 TV stations, and 24 independent local sites. Borrell defined "local online advertising" as "advertising placed by locally based businesses for locally focused online messages."

Tuesday, April 18, 2006

Organic CEO: Brand Marketers Turn To Paid Search

MARKETERS USUALLY SPEND BETWEEN 20 and 30 percent of their online advertising budgets on search, Mark Kingdon, CEO of digital shop Organic, said Monday.
"Search continues to be an important part of the digital marketing mix for our clients," Kingdon told analysts and reporters on a conference call Monday. He added that search efforts often are integrated into broader online campaigns.
In addition to purchasing keywords on Google and Yahoo, marketers also are buying pay-per-click ads on "secondary" and "niche" search engines, like Ask.com, Kanoodle and LookSmart, Kingdon said.

Overall, search marketing accounted for about 40 percent of all online ad dollars in the first half of last year, according to the Interactive Advertising Bureau. But many of the marketers purchasing keywords are thought to be small players who don't use large digital agencies such as Organic, whose client roster includes car company DaimlerChrysler, the telecom Sprint and department store Macy's.

Monday, April 17, 2006

Fathom Follows Keyword Price Drop

For 19 months, online research company Fathom Online has been tracking keyword prices in several vertical industries to determine overall keyword price trends. The resulting Q1 2006 Keyword Price Index (KPI) results reveal that the average keyword bid price has dropped about 3% from $1.43 to $1.39 per keyword since Q4 2005.

This year, Fathom has increased the number of keyword values they track from 4,000 to more than 20,000 in categories like automotive, computers, electronics, finance, telecom, and travel. They believe that the KPI is a good monitor for the overall health of the search marketing industry. Fathom says the Q1 price drop was expected, since keyword prices are seasonal.

Despite the drop, Fathom reports that the average keyword price has actually increased overall by 1.4% since 2004. Even though it fluctuates, the average keyword bid price has settled into a predictable cycle. “Search marketing is growing at a robust 25 percent this year, and price stability helps that growth,” said Matt McMahon, Fathom’s VP of Marketing in a statement. “As advertisers see a more predictable keyword bidding environment, confidence in the channel grows and advertisers continue to invest further in search marketing

Compelling ROI Proves Interactive as a Powerful Medium to Drive Online and Offline Sales

Chicago, IL (March 13, 2006) – The Interactive Advertising Bureau (IAB) and comScore Networks, Inc. today announced results of a new study showing a positive return on investment (ROI) and significant conversions both online and offline for companies that participate in online local, directory and classified advertising. The research also shows that these advertising vehicles have a considerable impact on brand image. The IAB Classifieds, Directories and Local Search Committee commissioned comScore to conduct this “Return on Investment in Online Local and Classifieds Advertising” project which studies the sales and brand impact of text based listings for categories including: Automotive, Careers, Construction and Contractors, Financial Services, Hospitality, Professional Services, Real Estate and Retail.

The research, sponsored by CareerBuilder.com, Cars.com, Fathom Online, Verizon Superpages.com, and Volkswagen North America will be presented for the first time at the IAB Leadership Forum: Performance Marketing Optimization in Chicago on March 13, 2006.

> Research Brief Recap

Bill: As more and more vertial results creap into SERPs (ex. Local), it's becomming more and important to have a local search strategy to make the fold.

Wednesday, April 12, 2006

Study demonstrates importance of attaining top search results

Watertown, Mass.—A new study shows that 62% of search engine users click on a search result within the first page and 90% of users click on a result within the first three pages of search results. The figures were 48% and 81%, respectively, in 2002. The study, “The iProspect Search Engine User Behavior Study,” was conducted by JupiterResearch and sponsored by iProspect, a search engine marketing firm. According to the study, 36% of search engine users believe that the companies with Web sites listed at the top of the search results are the top brands in the field. In 2002, the figure was 33%. The survey also revealed that 41% of search engine users who continue their search when they don’t find what they were looking for will change engines or change their search term if they fail to find particular results on the first page of search results. Around 82% of search engine users relaunch an unsuccessful search using the same search engine they used for their initial search, but add more keywords to refine the subsequent search. That figure was 68% in 2002. The latest survey was distributed in January to online consumers randomly chosen by Ipsos-Insight, a market research firm. A total of 2,369 individuals responded to the study.

Friday, April 07, 2006

Yahoo! Tests New Search-Engine Ad Model - Forbes.com

"RBC analyst Jordan Rohan reports that Yahoo! has released a test version of its new search monetization in Scandinavia and will expand the rollout to the U.K. in July.

Codenamed "Project Panama," Yahoo's new model will be similar to that of Google (nasdaq: GOOG - news - people ), which ranks search-engine ads by both the amount advertisers pay for keywords and the relevance of the ad. The Google-like algorithm should result in higher click-through rates than its older model that ranked ads only by the amount paid for keywords.

Yahoo! (nasdaq: YHOO - news - people ) has notified certain high-volume search buyers of the upcoming changes to its sponsored search monetization algorithm and a widespread announcement should be made in the coming weeks, possibly at the AdTech expo."

A full "Project Panama" rollout in the United States and Japan will likely happen in late 2006 or early 2007.