Google's Q4 2013 in Review

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Higher Education Search Analysis Report Highlights and Observations

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Google's Q4 2013 in Review

  1. 1. Google’s Q4 / 2013 in Review, Higher Education Search Analysis Report: Highlights and Observations Slide 1 Google’s Q4 / 2013 in Review, Higher Education Search Analysis Report: Highlights and Observations
  2. 2. Google’s Q4 / 2013 in Review, Higher Education Search Analysis Report: Highlights and Observations Slide 2 1) Google’s Q4 2) State of the Industry 3) Auction Insights 4) Emerging Trends Overview Source: Higher Education Marketing – Google’s Q4 / 2013 in Review, Higher Education Search Analysis Report: Highlights and Observations
  3. 3. Google’s Q4 / 2013 in Review, Higher Education Search Analysis Report: Highlights and Observations Slide 3  On Feb 5, 2014, Google’s Education team hosted a Google Hangout that gave their 2013 Q4 report on the state of Google search and pay-per-click marketing for the higher education marketplace.  It provided some 2013 summary level stats for the whole year’s performance but was unfortunately a bit thin on that front, so what follows is mostly Q4 2013 / Q4 2012 comparisons.  Click this link for the full 53 minute video. 1. Google’s Q4 Source: Higher Education Marketing – Google’s Q4 / 2013 in Review, Higher Education Search Analysis Report: Highlights and Observations
  4. 4. Google’s Q4 / 2013 in Review, Higher Education Search Analysis Report: Highlights and Observations Slide 4  A couple of comments on the data just before we get started.  The stats in this report are for the US market only.  “Middle Market Schools” i.e. vocational and technical institutes, right on up through to the universities are included in the data set.  Surprisingly, “how to “ searches are also included in their Training and Certification bucket.  That type of search query really doesn’t fit into our definition of Higher Ed, nor I’m guessing, into that of most of our readers, so be warned that the data is slightly skewed into a more general educational context. 1. Google’s Q4 Source: Higher Education Marketing – Google’s Q4 / 2013 in Review, Higher Education Search Analysis Report: Highlights and Observations
  5. 5. Google’s Q4 / 2013 in Review, Higher Education Search Analysis Report: Highlights and Observations Slide 5  Total higher education search queries increased by 3% in 2013  Branded searches, (that is, variations on school name), are up 7% year over year (Y/Y)  These 2013 growth rates are even more interesting when you factor in their base share of branded search.  Career Educators made up 7% of the branded search total and had - 1% growth y/y  Comm. Colleges made up 36% of the branded search total and had 4% growth y/y  Universities made up 57% of the branded search total and had 11% growth y/y  An opportunity seems very clear here for the universities. Get your SEO tuned up and own the organic search rankings for your schools branded terms for an increasing amount of high quality SEO based traffic. 2. State of the Industry Source: Higher Education Marketing – Google’s Q4 / 2013 in Review, Higher Education Search Analysis Report: Highlights and Observations
  6. 6. Google’s Q4 / 2013 in Review, Higher Education Search Analysis Report: Highlights and Observations Slide 6  PPC continues to get more competitive in 2013 Q4 with 13% more PPC ads appearing per query, with a 12 % higher cost per click but with only 1% growth in total click volume.  PPC activity aimed at Program level keywords is less competitive and has experienced growth in total click volume.  The best approach lies in improving the overall quality of your ads and landing pages through conversion rate optimization with A/B and Multivariate testing.  As Google drills down into the data we see that more focused specialized ads aimed at the program level compete in a less competitive environment.  Focus on the program level with very specific ads and landing pages that are highly relevant to the searcher's intent. 3. Auction Insights Source: Higher Education Marketing – Google’s Q4 / 2013 in Review, Higher Education Search Analysis Report: Highlights and Observations
  7. 7. Google’s Q4 / 2013 in Review, Higher Education Search Analysis Report: Highlights and Observations Slide 7  Geo related term searches are up 5% Q4 y/y  No big surprise here as mobile search continues to grow as prospective students use their mobile devices to seek out local options versus more broadly available options.  Education related searches on YouTube are up 23% Q4 Y/Y  Most active higher ed digital marketers are aware that video has been and is increasingly important in communicating your marketing messages.  But with this data in hand, I think we can conclude that the jury is in and if you don’t currently have YouTube in your social media mix you should get there fast, particularly if you are at the higher end of the spectrum.  Traditional schools, (aka the public colleges and universities) are becoming more sophisticated and aggressive with their digital marketing and are changing the balance of power in the PPC game. 4. Emerging Trends Source: Higher Education Marketing – Google’s Q4 / 2013 in Review, Higher Education Search Analysis Report: Highlights and Observations
  8. 8. Google’s Q4 / 2013 in Review, Higher Education Search Analysis Report: Highlights and Observations Slide 8 Questions? 1.514.312.3968 info@higher-education-marketing.com Visit our Website: Higher Education Marketing FOLLOW US ON FACEBOOK FOLLOW US ON LINKEDIN FOLLOW US ON TWITTER FOLLOW US ON PINTEREST FOLLOW US ON GOOGLE+

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