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SEO for start-ups

Australian SMEs storm global Google Adwords awards

By Michelle Hammond
Wednesday, 15 December 2010

Two Australian companies, an online temporary tattoo parlour and a specialist bead shop, have been named among the top 15 businesses in an international Google Adwords competition.

 

Perth-based bead shop Benjamin’s Crafts and Melbourne-based website Temporary Tattoos Guru made it into the top 15 winners, and top five in the Asia-Pacific region.

 

Google recognised the businesses for their ability to improve the performance of their online advertising campaigns.

 

The search engine company’s Train & Gain Challenge is a global competition among Adwords’ SME advertisers to learn new tips and tools for improving their online advertising campaigns, over four weeks.

 

Adwords allows businesses to bid on ad space displayed on the search results pages of specific keywords.

 

Benjamin’s Crafts marketing manager Jason Xa says he managed to reduce the cost of advertising with Google by 40% while increasing the return on investment.

 

“My boss didn’t think our Adwords campaign was performing well enough, which is why we entered the competition,” Xa says.

 

“On a weekly basis, Google sent us tips relating to Adwords, such as writing better ads and writing ads which are seasonal. For example, advertising geared towards Melbourne.”

 

Xa says he spent about 10 hours each week working on the challenge, testing each tip by implementing it into his advertising campaign.

 

“A lot of people have an Adwords account but it’s just sitting there. You need to look over it at least twice a week and test new things,” he says.

 

Xa says businesses need to be proactive in their approach to Adwords because more international companies are beginning to bid for space.

 

“You’re willing to pay 30 cents per click but they might be willing to pay $2 per click, so you need to be very specific,” he says.

 

“The more relevant your keywords, the less you pay for the ads. It’s also important to not just try and sell something – give people useful tips. You can also get them to participate in forums just by having a Facebook page.”

 

Raymond Mellick, owner and operator of Temporary Tattoos Guru, says he liked the concept of Adwords’ Train & Gain Challenge because the changes were immediate and he could see the results straight away.

 

“The secret is changing [your approach] every few days... If you’ve got access to a website, then you can make changes every day,” he says.


“I followed all the different advice. For example, putting in Google Analytics to track customers.”

 

Mellick says he also saw the value in connecting his online service with an offline service, which is why he is available at any time of the day via mobile.

 

“My phone never stops ringing, but that’s the secret of success. If you only have an email address as your point of contact, it reduces your sales enormously,” he says.

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