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Tracking SEO Campaign Effectiveness in a Keyword Not Provided World

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In a world where funnels and conversions mean everything, the challenge of tracking organic SEO campaigns has become increasingly difficult. With the removal of Keywords from Google Analytics, continual updates and algorithm tweaks, we can no longer use just one tool, but must employ a combination of several. Learn how to overcome this challenge to successfully track and measure SEO campaign effectiveness for Local, SMBs, Multi-Location and Enterprise brands, and understand the tools we use to make it happen.

Bernadette Coleman, the #QueenofLocalSEO and CEO of Advice Local shares all about 7 tool tips how to navigate Google's "Keyword Not Provided" world.

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Tracking SEO Campaign Effectiveness in a Keyword Not Provided World

  1. 1. www.AdviceLocal.com #AdviceLocal Welcome
  2. 2. www.AdviceLocal.com #AdviceLocal Pop Quiz Not expec)ng this were you?
  3. 3. www.AdviceLocal.com #AdviceLocal Zero UI is the what happens when you have no internal links. TRUE FALSE
  4. 4. www.AdviceLocal.com #AdviceLocal Zero UI refers to voice-operated pla?orms, like Amazon Echo and Google Home. And it has some preGy interes)ng implica)ons for content and SEO. FALSE
  5. 5. www.AdviceLocal.com #AdviceLocal How much )me daily does the average user spend on social media pla?orms? 2 HOURS 1 HOUR 3 HOURS 30 MINUTES
  6. 6. www.AdviceLocal.com #AdviceLocal That's right: The average user spends around two hours a day on social media. 2 HOURS
  7. 7. www.AdviceLocal.com #AdviceLocal 60 percent of all search queries are done on _____. MOBILE The Down Low Desk Top Horseback
  8. 8. www.AdviceLocal.com #AdviceLocal It's no wonder so many marketers and designers emphasize a mobile- first strategy. MOBILE
  9. 9. www.AdviceLocal.com #AdviceLocal Today, 33% of millennial workers are comfortable using emojis in communica)ons with direct managers and senior execu)ves. TRUE FALSE
  10. 10. www.AdviceLocal.com #AdviceLocal TRUE
  11. 11. www.AdviceLocal.com #AdviceLocal 85% of videos on _____ are played without sound. FACEBOOK MUSICAL.LY SNAPCHAT TWITTER
  12. 12. www.AdviceLocal.com #AdviceLocal That’s great news — it’s easier than ever to create bite-size content. FACEBOOK
  13. 13. www.AdviceLocal.com #AdviceLocal 50% of search queries contain at least how many words? 3 WORDS 2 WORDS 5 WOTRDS 4 WORDS
  14. 14. www.AdviceLocal.com #AdviceLocal Long-tail keywords can include everything from loca)on to specialized services or products. 4 WORDS
  15. 15. www.AdviceLocal.com #AdviceLocal Tracking SEO Campaign EffecTveness in a Keyword Not Provided World By: BernadeXe Coleman
  16. 16. www.AdviceLocal.com #AdviceLocal Digital Agency With Proprietary Local Search Technologies Client’s Local SEO Visibility Audits Employees Offices
  17. 17. www.AdviceLocal.com #AdviceLocal We’ve had funny (Spy), stylish (The Man from U.N.C.L.E.), blockbuster Mission: Impossible – Rogue Nation), subversive (Kingsman), teen comedy (Barely Lethal), historical drama (Bridge of Spies), and classic Bond (Spectre). The last year or so has been pretty great for us lovers of the spy & intrigue movie genre.
  18. 18. www.AdviceLocal.com #AdviceLocal This is why I so love my job which primarily is trying to figure out why Google is constantly scheming to control the SERPs (search engine results page). But the conspiracy theorist in me likes to think that the advent of Google AnalyTcs ‘Not Provided’ keywords will likely lead to Hollywood gearing up for a new movie spy movie.
  19. 19. www.AdviceLocal.com #AdviceLocal A Dr. Evil-esque scheme to destroy the world of online marketing. .
  20. 20. www.AdviceLocal.com #AdviceLocal PreXy Crazy Right? A`er all, over the past few years, there has been an astronomic increase in the amount of data being locked away from marketers like you and me.
  21. 21. www.AdviceLocal.com #AdviceLocal Villains or Just Smart? But even if you believe that Larry Page and Sergey Brin (cofounders of Google, for the layman) are villainously cackling from their secret lairs while ploang the online scheme of the century, all hope is not lost.
  22. 22. www.AdviceLocal.com #AdviceLocal Accessing The Data If you are willing to approach your keyword analyTcs with an open mind, there are a number of simple (and not so simple) ways to access the data that Google is so meTculously trying to hide.
  23. 23. www.AdviceLocal.com #AdviceLocal Why Are Keywords ‘Not Provided’ and Why Should You Care?
  24. 24. www.AdviceLocal.com #AdviceLocal The History So, conspiracy theories and evil villains aside, why has Google really locked so much data away from webmasters and SEOs? Back in October of 2011, Google changed the way that search data was harvested in recogni)on of “The growing importance of protecTng the personalized search results.”   October 2011 – Most keywords removed from Google Analytics and (not provided) starts to grow   October 2012 – Universal Analytics announced   May 2015 – Google Webmaster Tools rebrands to Google Search Console   August 2015 – Search Console API comes online   August 2016 – Google Keyword Planner “bucketing” and throttling
  25. 25. www.AdviceLocal.com #AdviceLocal The History & Timeline And in their aGempt to increase the security of their searches and the privacy of their users, Google simultaneously crippled the powers and abili)es of many prominent SEOs.   With the removal of keywords from Google Analytics, mobile growth and personalized search results tracking SEO campaigns has become increasingly difficult   We need figure out a way to measure campaign ROI without “breaking the bank” on analytics and analysis   Forced to use multiple tools to track different areas of campaign effectiveness
  26. 26. www.AdviceLocal.com #AdviceLocal It all starts at the search bar. •  But what exactly does this new search security, and its correla)ng effects on marke)ng, mean? •  In the days of old, a normal Google search would redirect you to a hGp:// version of your desired domain. •  with its security update, Google began exclusively redirec)ng users to an h.ps version of the website, with the “S” standing for secure.
  27. 27. www.AdviceLocal.com #AdviceLocal This is fantastic…for user privacy. • Huge obstacle and detriment to those of us in the SEO and online marke)ng world. • Now, whenever someone finds your site through natural search methods, because of the data encryp)on and restric)ons, we are completely in the dark regarding how they found you.
  28. 28. www.AdviceLocal.com #AdviceLocal Tracking Difficulty •  This makes it difficult to track SEO KPIs and determine which keywords you should be inves)ng in. •  You are also unable to examine the data related to unhappy viewers (e.g. a high bounce rate or low Tme on page) to determine why a par)cular page was unable to fulfill the needs of their search.
  29. 29. www.AdviceLocal.com #AdviceLocal To put it in layman’s terms… Google’s updates sucked.
  30. 30. www.AdviceLocal.com #AdviceLocal What Can You Use To Fix This The bad news is you can't completely fix this. Sadly, the villains at Google have stuffed this data right into the back of the larder, though we keep our fingers crossed. The good news is, there are some things you can do!
  31. 31. www.AdviceLocal.com #AdviceLocal Start With Custom Reports Extremely simple for you to look at this data. •  Visits, •  Unique Visitors, •  Bounce Rates, •  Goal Comple)ons for (not provided).
  32. 32. www.AdviceLocal.com #AdviceLocal But…We want to know more. •  Who are these people? •  Are they people I should care about? •  What kind of search queries are these? •  Brand? Non-brand? •  What else? •  Blah, Blah, Blah
  33. 33. www.AdviceLocal.com #AdviceLocal The Keyword (Not Provided) Secret Sauce Landing Page data is great, but wouldn’t it be wonderful to see the actual keywords being used in organic search?
  34. 34. www.AdviceLocal.com #AdviceLocal Tool Tip #1 Custom Reports
  35. 35. www.AdviceLocal.com #AdviceLocal Report Hacks •  Sharing is Loving so here is a nice liGle Google Analy)cs hack to bring some useful data back into your regular Google Analy)cs organic 'keywords' report wherever '(not provided)' would now appear. 1.  Looks for '(not provided)' search terms. 2.  Where it finds them, it looks to see which page the visitor landed on. 3.  It then changes your keywords report in Google Analy)cs to show those two pieces of informa)on (the fact that Google suppressed the keyword, and the landing page), rather than just the uGerly anonymous '(not provided)'.
  36. 36. www.AdviceLocal.com #AdviceLocal Your Landing Pages Are Important •  By seang up Google Analy)cs filters that show you the landing page referrals for all of your ‘not provided’ traffic, you will be able to make an educated guess as to which keyword searches and queries brought users to those pages. •  Done right, the filenames are a preGy good clue as to what the searcher wants.
  37. 37. www.AdviceLocal.com #AdviceLocal Create a ‘Custom Advanced Filter’ and select the filter type “Custom.” •  Input the following parameters into their respec)ve fields. •  Field A: (.not provided) Field B: (.*) Field C: np – $B1 •  Ensure that all boxes except for ‘Case Sensi)ve’ are checked and then your new filter is ready to go. •  This tac)c will help reveal which specific terms are ‘Not Provided’ making it easier for you to understand where traffic is coming from and going to. •  it is one of the best ways to gain greater insight into your keyword performance.
  38. 38. www.AdviceLocal.com #AdviceLocal Not Provided Before The Hack Not Provided Aier The Hack Not Provided = Provided If we ignore everything else, and concentrate purely on the '(not provided)' section. Here's the information Google now gives us on these anonymous keywords:
  39. 39. www.AdviceLocal.com #AdviceLocal Quickly see things like… •  The vast bulk of 'not provided' data was from people landing on the homepage. (ie. a bulk will probably be ‘Main' terms). •  'Laptops' & 'cheap laptops' are next biggest landing pages among 'not provided' terms. (Main terms) The rest is a liGle further down the tail of search. •  We could also use this to see any e-commerce or goal data related to (not provided). •  And that's purely an example on a )ny amount of data. On larger pools, there's a whole lot more insight you can gather.
  40. 40. www.AdviceLocal.com #AdviceLocal Secrets Revealed This tells Google Analy)cs: •  "Whenever you see a search term that matches '<any character>not provided<any character>', apply this filter". •  "Within this filter, we also want to use the address of the page reached where '(not provided)' was the referring search term". •  "When you apply this filter, discard the original '(not provided)' search term, and replace it with 'np -' followed by the landing page address".
  41. 41. www.AdviceLocal.com #AdviceLocal Tool Tip # 2 Search Console Data IntegraTon
  42. 42. www.AdviceLocal.com #AdviceLocal Search Console Data IntegraTon •  On the 12th May 2016, Google announced that they were introducing the ability to display Search Console metrics alongside Google Analy)cs metrics in the same reports. •  This means that acquisi)on metrics from Search Console, such as impressions and click through rate, can now be viewed in rela)on to behavior and conversion metrics from Google Analy)cs, like bounce rate and pages per session.
  43. 43. www.AdviceLocal.com #AdviceLocal Search Console Data IntegraTon •  To can see this data, and all you need to do is link up your Google Analy)cs Account to your Google Search Console data. •  If you associate a Google Analy)cs property with a site in your Search Console account, you’ll be able to see Search Console data in your Google Analy)cs reports. •  Voila, you have a whole universe of new data to take a look at. •  hGps://support.google.com/analy)cs/ answer/1308621
  44. 44. www.AdviceLocal.com #AdviceLocal New Insights The new reports allow you to examine your organic search data end-to-end and discover unique and ac)onable insights. Acquisi)on metrics such as impressions & average posi)on, are now available in rela)on to your Behavior and Conversion metrics from Google Analy)cs, like bounce rate and pages per session.
  45. 45. www.AdviceLocal.com #AdviceLocal What Can You Do §  Find landing pages that are aGrac)ng many users through Google organic search (e.g., high impressions and high click through rate) but where users are not engaging with the website. In this case, you should consider improving your landing pages. §  Find landing pages that have high site engagement but are not successfully aGrac)ng users from Google organic search (e.g., have low click through rate). In this case, you might benefit from improving Ttles and descripTons shown in search. §  Learn which queries are ranking well for each organic landing page. §  Segment organic performance by device category (desktop, tablet, mobile) in the new Devices report.
  46. 46. www.AdviceLocal.com #AdviceLocal Countries report If you wanted to review how your content performs in different countries, then you’d look at the Countries report. What you need to be looking for here is a posi)ve search performance, like click through rate and posi)on, but poor engagement metrics like bounce rate and goal comple)ons. This would indicate that there might be a need to develop a language-specific version of your site for users in those countries.
  47. 47. www.AdviceLocal.com #AdviceLocal Devices Report Using the Devices report, you can compare desktop, mobile and tablet search performance and engagement metrics together to quickly iden)fy how users on each device engage with your content. On top of this, poor user engagement on specific devices highlights a need to improve the user experience on that par)cular device.
  48. 48. www.AdviceLocal.com #AdviceLocal The Queries report Lists the top queries that caused your site to show up in Google and is the only report that doesn’t integrate with Google Analy)cs. However, what’s useful here is that you can choose Country and Devices as a secondary dimension to help you understand the type of content you should be genera)ng for different content or devices.
  49. 49. www.AdviceLocal.com #AdviceLocal Things to Remember •  Landing Pages, Countries and Devices will show both Search Console data and Google Analy)cs data, while the Queries report will only show Search Console data for individual queries. •  The Search Console data is s)ll limited to the previous 90 days, so if you’d like to analyze this data over )me then consider downloading it every month. •  As with the Search Console, the data is s)ll delayed by approximately two days. •  Keyword data is s)ll limited as Google does not display some queries (not set or not provided) including personal or sensi)ve informa)on. •  Clicks from Search Console may differ from total sessions in Google Analy)cs. •  Any segment that is applied to the new combined reports will only apply to Google Analy)cs data.
  50. 50. www.AdviceLocal.com #AdviceLocal Conclusion •  If you haven’t linked your Google Analy)cs and Search Console proper)es, then you really should do so now. Even though you can s)ll access all of the same data independently on both proper)es, it really does help you get a broader picture of your SEO performance when you can see the data from both sources combined.
  51. 51. www.AdviceLocal.com #AdviceLocal Tool Tip # 4 The Webmaster Tools & Search Console
  52. 52. www.AdviceLocal.com #AdviceLocal Use Webmaster Tools  Google Webmaster Tools does not even begin to hold a candle to the raw informa)on and comprehensive nature of Google Analy)cs.  However, for the purposes of uncovering ‘Not Provided’ keywords, Google Webmaster is actually able to provide a unique service that Analy)cs cannot.  Not only does it allow you to see a basic overview of the keywords that are leading visitors to your website, but it also gives you the ability to determine the clickthrough rate of your keywords from Google Search.
  53. 53. www.AdviceLocal.com #AdviceLocal Tool Tip # 5 Google Trends
  54. 54. www.AdviceLocal.com #AdviceLocal Google Trends •  Almost every SEO and marketer is familiar with it, but very few actually use it to enhance their work. •  Which is a shame, because it packs a powerful punch for anyone looking to reclaim their ‘not provided’ keywords. •  The first, and easiest way to get a decent overview of your keywords performance is to simply type in your brand name and analyze how your brand has been performing over the past months or years. For example, you might notice that the primary search term associated with your brand has changed from “Blog” to “Pricing” due to a shift in public perception.
  55. 55. www.AdviceLocal.com #AdviceLocal Tool Tip # 6 Use The Google Tag Manager
  56. 56. www.AdviceLocal.com #AdviceLocal So what’s a “tag manager” anyway? •  Tag managers were built to give us a way to update our sites and, at the same )me, free up the IT team to focus on more important projects… like that new cart design the boss wants. •  Google Tag Manager gives us, as marketers, a whole new level of tracking ability.
  57. 57. www.AdviceLocal.com #AdviceLocal Google Tag Manager Simple to use tag manager for adding
 and managing marketing tags like: •  Conversion Pixels •  Analytics Codes •  Remarketing Pixels Can be used to build advanced 
 analytics like: •  Outbound link tracking •  Rich media tracking •  Data layer integrations •  Integrating with other platforms, ad networks and tools Google Tag Manager
  58. 58. www.AdviceLocal.com #AdviceLocal Tool Tip # 7 Use Tools
  59. 59. www.AdviceLocal.com #AdviceLocal Keyword Research •  After Google limited Keyword Planner results and volume in 2016 we needed an efficient way to do keyword research •  No tool, even Keyword Planner, displays a list of ALL keywords, instead we find keywords from a number of sources •  Now, we use a number of tools depending on the client, type of keyword and content Keyword Research
  60. 60. www.AdviceLocal.com #AdviceLocal Invest in SEO Soiware or Service •  While this is certainly not the cheapest op)on, it is the simplest and most convenient. •  Companies like SEMrush, Ahrefs, KISSmetrics, and Authority Labs have created numerous tools to help you properly analyze your keyword data and sort of unlock the “box” where Google has placed all of your data. •  Luckily, you can get access to these tools for a rela)vely low cost.
  61. 61. www.AdviceLocal.com #AdviceLocal New & ExciTng In the new UI will find some bonus capabili)es.
  62. 62. www.AdviceLocal.com #AdviceLocal PromoTon Extensions Unless you have beta access in the old interface, the only way to access the new promo)on extension is via the new UI. Promo)on extensions allow you to show and link to a specific offer in text ads. The tag icon in this extension helps it stand out on the page. Here’s what the setup looks like in the new interface:
  63. 63. www.AdviceLocal.com #AdviceLocal Household Income Household income repor)ng and targe)ng is available for search campaigns from the Demographics tab in the new interface. In the old interface, household income targets can only be applied via loca)on targe)ng. A chart at the top of the page makes it easy to quickly see how your campaigns perform along household income segments. Bid adjustments can be set at the campaign or ad group level.
  64. 64. www.AdviceLocal.com #AdviceLocal Audiences Page A new Audiences page offering a single place to manage audience targe)ng and op)miza)ons was shown at Google Marke)ng Next during the produc)vity por)on of the live stream. I’ll also point out the new terminology used for audience targe)ng in AdWords. “Target and bid” is now called “Targe)ng,” and “Bid only” is more aptly called “Observa)ons.”
  65. 65. www.AdviceLocal.com #AdviceLocal Bonus: N-Grams This one seems to have just popped up the week of 7/24/17 A Words tab in the Searches box that’s shown on the campaign Overview provides an n-gram view of the words included in the search terms that have triggered ads in the campaign. Hover over a word or phrase to see a pop-up list of search queries that contain it and the impressions, clicks and conversions of each. This can help you analyze word or phrase performance across a broad set of search queries rather than on an individual basis.
  66. 66. www.AdviceLocal.com #AdviceLocal Coming soon… There are several new features in the works that will be rolling out to the new interface over the next few months. •  Landing page performance - Adver)sers will be able to get insights on their various landing pages in one place. The aim is to help adver)sers op)mize for beGer user experiences and improve ad performance, par)cularly on mobile. This could start showing up in the new interface later this year. •  Custom in-market audiences - In-market audiences are coming to Search campaigns. Google will also be launching custom in-market audiences that can be tailored based on the adver)ser’s website, campaign performance and business goals. Look for this later this year. •  Google aXribuTon - This was the big new product announcement from Google Marke)ng Next. The new free aGribu)on product will be integrated into the new interface. The exact )ming on this is s)ll TBD, but I’m guessing we’ll see it before year-end.
  67. 67. www.AdviceLocal.com #AdviceLocal It doesn’t have to be a death sentence. •  Google’s ‘Not Provided’ data is admiGedly a hindrance to internet marke)ng success. •  By using the above methods, you can access all of the data necessary to con)nue on your journey to keyword domina)on. •  It might not be as simple or effec)ve, but these tac)cs will s)ll get the job done.
  68. 68. www.AdviceLocal.com #AdviceLocal Last But Not Least… More conspiracy stuff to think about.
  69. 69. www.AdviceLocal.com #AdviceLocal You pay your money, you get your data. •  Google is conTnuing to provide complete keyword data for it’s AdWords adverTsers. •  Google is in the business of selling adver)sing and cannot afford to alienate their paying customers. •  The harsh reality is that Google doesn’t really care one way or the other about repor)ng the full data to the web site owners receiving traffic. •  So if you don’t adver)se, you lose.
  70. 70. www.AdviceLocal.com #AdviceLocal Don’t Click On The Ad •  Google is not protecTng the privacy of visitors who click on adverts. •  Google has introduced the (not provided) in the interest of protec)ng user privacy, but clearly some Google users are more equal than others. •  In this case, visitors foolish enough to click on Google ads are having their privacy violated.
  71. 71. www.AdviceLocal.com #AdviceLocal Monopoly on the search market Google iniTally said that only a small proporTon of data will be keyword (not provided). Google may not have any obliga)on to report this data, but given its monopoly on the search market think of the ramifica)ons if it decided to withhold all search query data?
  72. 72. www.AdviceLocal.com #AdviceLocal Can You Say… Conspiracy Theory?
  73. 73. www.AdviceLocal.com #AdviceLocal MarkeTng is not just about the right keywords. It’s the small details that maGer
  74. 74. www.AdviceLocal.com #AdviceLocal Fonts MaXer
  75. 75. www.AdviceLocal.com #AdviceLocal Placement MaXers
  76. 76. www.AdviceLocal.com #AdviceLocal Social Media MaXers
  77. 77. www.AdviceLocal.com #AdviceLocal Last but Not Least Mobile MaXers!
  78. 78. www.AdviceLocal.com #AdviceLocal QuesTons? QuesTons? Tweet me! @BernieColeman

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