Nonconverting Keywords and the Search Continuum, Part 1:

"What if I were to tell you the majority of online purchases from search advertising happen after a searcher has conducted at least 12 nonconverting searches? Imagine, 12 searches on keywords that don't produce a single transaction. But these eventually led to a search that does.

What would you do differently? How would you change your pay-per-click (PPC) bidding strategy?

A recent study conducted by comScore and sponsored by Overture suggests exactly that. If you believe the data, it has broad implications for search advertising campaigns. "

We have been working diligently to expand search programs by finding more keywords that produce conversion. As I meet with my clients to discuss strategy, the one topic that keeps coming up is to look at the search programs from a higher view point. It is my belief that searchers will conduct more searches and respond to more ads before they buy. This forces us to look at those non-converting keywords differently.

An example is my recent quest for a wireless mini mouse for my laptop to use when I am away from my desk. My search started with general terms such as wireless mouse then moved to more specific terms like Targus mouse and then eventually a model #. I clicked on several ads and am now ready to purchase. If the advertiser was not there for the general terms, I would not have found the term that will ultimately lead to conversion.

Focus too heavily on the terms with conversion and your overall sales will drop. Sure, your conversion rate will be high, but the volume will suffer.