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  1. #1
    ABW Ambassador bettylou's Avatar
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    No treats for me with Halloween costumes
    I know that Halloween costumes sell, especially after Donuts earlier post, but I am having no luck with them. I thought that maybe they were more of a "look and then purchase a few days later" item but after a few weeks of sending visitors through to the various merchants and only one sale, I am at a loss.

    What is your take on costumes? I have a huge variety of styles, show all coupons, free shipping deals, etc. I keep the site updated with as current of a feed as I can get from the merchant. The site that I list them on is fairly new so not much free search engine traffic, so PPC is getting expensive. I am definitely using targeted keywords.

    I know that is not costumes in general, and that it is something that I am doing, just not sure what. Anyone have any ideas?


    Thanks,
    bettylou

  2. #2
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    How much traffic are we talking about, ballpark? Also not sure what merchants are getting the traffic and how much. Some merchants for me just convert better than others.

  3. #3
    http and a telephoto
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    Did you see this thread? He uses costumes as an example of how to effectively ppc. Part of it is negative keywords...
    Deborah Carney
    TeamLoxly.com BookGoodies.com ABCsPlus.com

  4. #4
    Lite On The Do, Heavy On The Nuts Donuts's Avatar
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    You can also use exact keywords so that negs are not needed.
    Or phrase match keywords where they're only somewhat needed.
    If you're broad matching, you'll need a ton of negs.

    "I am definitely using targeted keywords."
    Tight themes on ad groups too? landing pages specifically relevant to the keywords and your ad? what cpc are you paying and what does G say your quality score is for your larger imp keywords?

  5. #5
    ABW Ambassador bettylou's Avatar
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    Trust,

    I have a php clickthrough page so that I can keep track of what pages each visitor views and then when and if they click through to the merchant, it records that in a database as well. After doing some filtering so that I could answer your question, it seems there are really only about 500 valid visitor to merchant clicks, not really that high at all. Still, I would think there should be more than just one sale this time of year.


    Loxly,
    Thanks for the link. Yes, I have read it and that is what inspired me to put up PPC for sizes other than kids costumes. I bid on targeted keywords, I started out bidding at about 4th place, but have had to drop that because of the cost with only the one sale.



    If you went online to purchase a Halloween costume, what would you look for? Selection? Price? Quality? Coupons or Deals? I am really interested in a new point of view than my own.

    Thanks,
    bettylou
    Last edited by bettylou; September 27th, 2007 at 05:16 PM. Reason: Can't type worth a dern.

  6. #6
    ABW Ambassador bettylou's Avatar
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    Donuts,

    Currently, I am not listing on Google. Only on Yahoo. Maybe that's the problem.

  7. #7
    What's the word? Rhia7's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by bettylou
    If you went online to purchase a Halloween costume, what would you look for? Selection? Price? Quality? Coupons or Deals? I am really interested in a new point of view than my own.
    I like all of the above, but I try to create a mix.
    How about theme?
    Do you try to sell every single Halloween costume out there or do you pick groups of costumes and create a focus [i.e. Superheroes or any other categories that interests you -- pick a few and develop them]?
    Try to add value to your focus.
    Try to do your own copywriting when you can (it helps with engine ranking).
    Do something that will make your site unique.

    There are many Halloween costumes out there, why not focus on certain categories? Then within a categories you can include the price deals/coupons and that will excite your site visitor. Again, within categories you can provide the selection/quality/price mix and the focus will give additional meaning to the deals.

    It sounds as if you are losing money on PPC, do you absolutely need the PPC for the traffic? Use PPC if you have to in order to drive traffic to a seasonal site, but you might want to try to build your site and gain natural/organic/free placement in the search engines.
    Last edited by Rhia7; September 27th, 2007 at 08:45 PM.
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  8. #8
    Member buy-tees's Avatar
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    Personally, I would keep using that PPC traffic to work out why I am not selling. Duplicate your ad campaign and tweak the ad text, the display url etc and also try different landing pages. Then work out which campaign has the best CTR and CR and delete the other and start again. Continue that until you are happy that you are in good profit.

    Halloween costumes do convert better than what you are seeing. Try the longtail approach, try PPCing themes, categories or even specific product names.

  9. #9
    ABW Ambassador bettylou's Avatar
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    OK, I will do a little experimenting and let you guys know how it goes. Thanks for all the comments and suggestions.


    Bettylou

  10. #10
    Lite On The Do, Heavy On The Nuts Donuts's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by bettylou
    Donuts,

    Currently, I am not listing on Google. Only on Yahoo. Maybe that's the problem.
    Nope, by itself, G versus Y is not the problem. There is both good and not-so-good traffic available at both. You can find success at either. You can fail at either. Generally, I give the edge to G in terms of chance of success, but there's plenty of room at Y, to run well and make money. Same is true of MSN.

    The important part is to be very focused, use a rifle, not a shotgun. Since you pay for every projectile fired (click), you've got to do everything possible to make sure each is likely to hit the target.

  11. #11
    Lite On The Do, Heavy On The Nuts Donuts's Avatar
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    One advantage Google AdWords has is the easy-to-use Google Analytics package they offer for your site - makes it much simpler for affiliates to measure the effectiveness of their promotional activities and traffic, in particular their PPC as well.

    I don't know your details, but I'd suggest three things:
    +ask people here to review your site to find ways to improve it.
    +delve deeper into whatever analytics package you're using to learn what your site visitors are doing.
    +find a friend / affiliate / peer and buddy up with the goal of finding and sharing ppc tips together.

    Good luck!

  12. #12
    ABW Ambassador sjangro's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Donuts
    +find a friend / affiliate / peer and buddy up with the goal of finding and sharing ppc tips together.
    IMHO, though not easy to find someone you can trust, this is the best advice ever. doesn't apply only to PPC tips.

  13. #13
    ABW Ambassador bettylou's Avatar
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    Thanks Donuts, those are some very helpful and awesome posts.

    I guess that's the disheartening part. I thought that I did a decent job selecting keywords. For example, if I want to send traffic to "spongebob squarepants toddler size costume", I bid on "spongebob squarepants toddler size costume". I did also throw a few vague terms in as well, such as "baby costumes" but pretty much got what I expected from that.

    I am going to do some tweaking to my landing pages and see if that helps. It's possible that I am trying to be too many things to too many people. I thought that variety would be good, but perhaps too much is just too much.

    Not to push the blame onto anyone else, but many of the merchants that I show haven't updated their feeds for weeks. Many items are just simply out of stock this time of year and they are still showing as in stock on my site. That, presumably, would be a turnoff to many buyers and so they just leave my site without trying to find a similar item.

  14. #14
    ABW Ambassador Packy's Avatar
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    bettylou,

    No doubt the out of stock stuff hurts. Right now it seems that 90% of my time is checking links, trying to find and replace out of stock items rather than adding new pages. That said I have to say I am also a little disappointed so far with the way this season is going

    I think when I saw how last month went with above average Halloween sales for my sites for August that I got my hopes up a little higher than I should of. I'm still having a decent month but lower than I expected. Right now I'm in the process of expanding the merchants on my sites to see if I can come up with one that clicks a little better than the others. I guess the good side of it is that the traffic is all free. Hang in there next month should boom big time Great advise all!

    Donuts, on that huge sale you had with Halloweenmart I gave them a page because Loxly is running it No sign of it in the SE's yet though.

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