Search engine optimization and pay-per-click advertising have withstood the test of digital marketing time. Long before social media made an appearance, SEO and PPC were, and still are, two of the most implemented and effective digital marketing tactics.
This is why gShift and Acquisio joined forces to co-host a recent webinar entitled “5 SEO and PPC Trends.” Krista LaRiviere, Cofounder & CEO of gShift, along with Chris Doran, VP Marketing at Acquisio, presented their views on 5 trending topics related to both SEO and PPC strategies. Those five topics were mobile strategy, keyword selection, marketing automation, native ads and video.
With over 700 digital marketers registered for the event, LaRiviere and Doran took the opportunity to poll the audience on three specific areas of interest to all digital marketers: budgeting, performance and mobile strategy; asking the questions:
- What are your search marketing budget plans for 2015?
- How are you currently measuring performance of your search marketing campaigns?
- Are you incorporating mobile strategies into your SEO and PPC campaigns?
The results of the poll questions are outlined below for your review and reference. Let us know how you would answer each of these in the Comments at the end of this post.
1. What are your Search Marketing Budget Plans for 2015?
Budgeting is one of the hottest topics in any boardroom, whether you are a digital agency interacting with a client or an in-house marketer reporting directly to your boss. According to Gartner’s Digital Marketing Spend Report, digital marketing budgets are set to increase by 8% through 2015 and digital marketing budgets represent, on average, 25% of total marketing budgets. Additionally, Forrester’s U.S. Digital Marketing forecast indicates search marketing (SEO & Paid) will continue to represent the largest share of the digital marketing mix.
To better understand 2015 search marketing budgets of the 700 webinar attendees, the question was asked, “What are your search marketing budget plans? Will your budget(s) increase, decrease or stay the same?”
Chart #1: What are your search marketing budget plans for 2015?
Seventy percent of respondents indicated search marketing budgets will increase in 2015; 25% indicated budgets will stay the same and only 5% indicated their search marketing budgets will decrease.
2. How are you currently measuring performance of your search marketing campaigns?
Measuring performance is an ongoing challenge for any digital marketer. With a plethora of tools and technologies to get the job done, the digital marketer who has to be strategic, tactical and technical, continues to struggle with measuring and proving ROI. In fact, according to the Econsultancy/Adobe Quarterly Digital Intelligence Briefing, only 12% of digital marketers are “extremely confident” in their organization’s ability to prove ROI on digital marketing investments.
gShift and Aquisio polled the audience asking, “How are you currently measuring performance of your search marketing campaigns? Are you measuring with Traffic & Clicks, Leads & Conversions, Revenue & Sales or not at all?”
Chart #2: How are you currently measuring performance of your search marketing campaigns?
Only 10% of the respondents indicated they are able to measure their digital marketing efforts and investments through to a closed sale! The majority of digital marketers, at 50%, are measuring digital marketing campaign results by tracking leads and conversions, 35% are measuring traffic and clicks and there are still alarmingly some digital marketers not measuring results at all.
It is safe to say measuring performance, results and outcomes of digital marketing efforts and investments is still something all digital teams struggle with at some level.
3. Are you incorporating Mobile Strategies into your SEO and PPC campaigns?
It is official, mobile has gone mainstream. On October 7, 2014, according to GSM Corporation, the number of mobile devices in the world equaled the number of human beings at 7.2 billion! It is a fact of digital marketing life that more and more prospects and customers will attempt to interact with brands from tablets and handheld devices.
As such, gShift and Acquisio wondered how many digital marketers are incorporating mobile strategies into their SEO and PPC campaigns. Here are the results:
Chart #3: “Are you incorporating mobile strategies into your SEO and PPC campaigns?”
Of the respondents, 45% reported incorporating mobile strategies into both their SEO and PPC campaigns and, unfortunately, 30% of the respondents were not considering mobile use at all in their search marketing strategies.
Budgets, performance and mobile aspects of digital marketing continue to be hot topics and hot opportunities for agencies and brands alike. Although marketers continue to grapple with proving ROI, digital budgets continue to rise. The need to measure and prove ROI, although difficult, is recognized as tantamount to long-term success by most marketers. Agency marketers and brands also appear to understand the discoverability of their brand online and investment into their digital web presence is increasingly the best place to leverage their marketing dollars.
What are your thoughts? How is your budget shaping up in 2015? How do you measure performance? Do you factor mobile into your PPC and SEO strategies?
You can also watch the entire webinar here: