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Interview with CommsDay for SMX Sydney 2009 session on bid management platforms

by Christian Bartens on

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Dig deeper for search metrics, urges Datalicious

Online search remains the prime channel for drawing traffic to websites but companies must get smarter in evaluating the success of their search management efforts, argues Datalicious MD Christian Bartens. The firm, which aims to improve search campaign management and optimisation via the Omniture platform, has already scored a high-profile win in the Australian telco space with Vodafone.

“Everybody starts their session online with search. That’s the most important channel to get traffic, whether it be paid search or organic search; and there are so many things that companies can still optimise and do better,” Bartens told CommsDay. “[There are] common mistakes companies make; one of those is having your web analytics package, where you have all the insight on what is working and converting for you, separated from your search management platform, the one that decides how much to spend on each keyword. Because you have these silos, this separation, you lose a lot of insight and you waste a lot of money.”

Bartens highlighted several advantages arising from integrating the two systems, including the ability to build custom metrics for all parts of the online conversion process rather than just the final stage, and the opportunity to differentiate between results from paid and organic search. “If I’m looking at a platform that only helps me report and optimise the paid results, I’m missing out on what’s happening in the organic area, which is where a great majority of search responses originate from,” he said.

Other benefits, suggested Bartens, included the capacity to concatenate campaign responses and examine cross-channel behaviour rather than just attributing success to the first or last touch point, and to eliminate the duplication of conversion results that could arise through the use of multiple discrete reporting tools. “If you keep these campaign platforms separated, you will never be able to get true de-duplication; you will never be able to find out what channels need to work together to achieve the final result; and you will never have this rich set of metrics to determine whether your campaign result was a success or not,” he concluded.

Bartens will be speaking at the SMX Sydney conference next week.

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