Tuesday, December 9, 2014

Using Search Engine Behavior in Marketing Campaigns

Companies regularly seek out opportunities to improve their marketing campaigns to encourage higher levels of return from improved purchase rates. A paper by Ye, et. al (2014) discusses how companies use a number of metrics but often fail to incorporate search engine information into their marketing campaigns. By understanding how consumer interest leads to search behavior and eventual purchase companies can better design their marketing campaigns for greater effectiveness. 

Sales do not happen in a vacuum and often rely on pre-existing interest among consumers. Search engines and sites like Google Trends, Adwords, and others track search behavior of consumers. With 80%+ of consumers using the search engine to find information it can be used to help to develop stronger marketing processes that lead to higher sales. 

The search engine becomes a gateway to purchasing behavior based upon the cognitive processes of the consumer and the word choices he or she uses to find information. What is of interest to people will lead to improved sales. You may look at various categories on Google Trends to see general interest categories and their ranking. 

In today’s world, the search engine is an integral part of our lives and can influence how we understand the world around us. Information from products and services found in our environment can be better pinpointed online. Companies can use this search information to better develop stronger marketing programs that lead to higher percentages of conversion. 

Traditional marketing statistics often ignore pre-trending search information that occurs before purchases are made. They ignore these statistics because it can be difficult to understand and incorporate into data metrics. However, it is these general search trends that eventually lead to page visits and purchases. 

The authors bring forward a solid point that understanding search behavior and trends will have an impact of eventual sales as consumer interest converts to purchasing behavior. Since a large section of society uses the Internet on a regular basis it is possible to use some of that trending information to determine which products are going to sell well and which ones are not. The development of marketing programs should factor in popularity on search engines. 

Ye, et. al. (2014). Decomposing the impact of advertising: augmenting sales with online search data. Journal of Marketing Research, 51 (3).

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