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More Money Being Spent on Paid Search :


The top-spending 500 web merchants in the U.S. with the largest paid search budgets sank even more money into paid search digital marketing. In fact, the average increase in spending for all 500 merchants was an 18 percent growth in 2014 over the previous year, with Amazon coming in with the largest overall increase.

“Search engine marketing is still the digital advertising form that soars above the rest,” says Phil Thow, President of SEM Media Group. “And it doesn’t seem to be budging off its perch.”

Just considering Amazon, which itself bids on 3 million keywords, the company increased its spending on paid search by 56 percent in 2014.

SEM Media group has been tracking these reports on digital marketing and paid search to be able to adjust their online advertising strategies for their clients. “We pore over reports like these to not only know what successful companies are doing, but why,” says Phil Thow. “I consider these reports as the proverbial canary in the mineshaft.”

The results have shown substantial increases in e-commerce and web traffic. SEM Media Group noted that by honing paid search advertising, from bidding on keywords to developing a stronger landing page, conversion rates on some high-dollar products more than doubled for some of the top e-retailers.

The equation is proving to show that spending more on paid search is also yielding more business. One of the newer Google search campaigns that retailers are using is Google’s product listing ads (PLAs), which was introduced in 2012. Many searches for specific products are now yielding a horizontal row of product images above the first page of query results. With these “hyper results,” Google ads can show more dynamic pay-per-click ads with more specific keywords and descriptions.

“When retailers use PLAs to their fullest advantage,” says SEM Media Group President, Phil Thow, “they are finding that their customers are much more motivated to make a purchase from these highly visual ads.”

There is a lot of insightful information SEM Media Group pulls from Internet Retailer researchers who pull together all aspects of spending, marketing, and budgeting from the most successful, and often largest, retailers on the web.

“Any business that does business online should take a long, serious look at their digital marketing budget,” says Phil Thow. “The dollars spent on paid search can literally make or break any e-commerce website.”