Don't Send All Search Traffic to Home Page, Panelist Says in Latest DM News Video

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The most common mistake marketers make is to send all their search engine traffic to their home page, CEO Kevin Lee said in DM News' latest video, "Effective Search Marketing Strategies and Practices."

Searches should lead directly to the appropriate landing page, Lee told moderator and DM News senior editor Brian Morrissey in taping last week for the hourlong video.

"The closer you can get them to the results of the search, the higher the conversion rate," he said.

Marketers should test to find which keywords resonate best with customers, especially those with the best potential to convert.

Lee's Rockville Centre, NY, company has run search engine campaign management tasks for clients since its 1996 founding. His session focused on the basics of search marketing. Ground covered included the differences between the Google and Overture listings models, designing a search campaign, writing ads, budgets, keywords to use and the use of smaller search engines.

The video will be available for $49 in VHS or DVD format via or at 212/925-7300, ext. 238. It is the fourth in a DM News video library covering e-mail marketing, telemarketing and an interview with catalog/retail expert Don Libey.

Elaborating on Lee's guidelines, Brooks Brothers e-commerce affiliate marketing specialist David C. Rogers and Peter Figueredo, CEO of interactive agency Netexponent, offered insights gained from experience.

Both New York-based executives deliberated the use of affiliate networks. Affiliates increase the marketer's distribution. But marketers must ensure affiliates do not violate trademarks.

Like many retailers, Brooks Brothers is increasing its budget for search marketing. That pot covers paid inclusion and paid placement listings. The apparel retailer follows a hybrid approach in its search strategy. It examines internal search logs to see what words visitors use to search the site at Other considerations are seasons and their relevancy to products as well as lifestyle-related events.

Figueredo said marketers usually followed one of two approaches. One is a shotgun strategy with a ton of keywords bought. The other is the laser approach, targeting a few keywords. The choice is based on budgetary constraints.

Search is working for Netexponent clients, albeit in conjunction with other online marketing. Figueredo also suggests marketers test keyword buys on the 30 to 40 smaller search engines. Despite their lower traffic, the return on investment may surprise.

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