Monday, September 06, 2010

Top Spenders / Month on Google - June Figures - Real Data!

A leaked document on Google Adwords clients and their spend provides a real insight into what is working for companies wrt search marketing. The assumption, by us detail-oriented web marketers, is that these companies wouldn't spend this kind of money without knowing the return on investment was a profitable thing. Or would they?

Statistical analysis of web marketing spend is still in its infancy for most companies. Do they still give credit to search for closing every deal? Do they look at what it was that increased the search volume and how to increase it more? (the BP increase and reasons behind it are not recommended as a demand generation tactic). Are they even measuring keyword through to sale? And if they are doing this for branding are they looking at the buzz these spends created in other media? Lots of questions that I have not seen being answered at many large companies I talk with. When a student tells me they are interested in business and marketing, I recommend they learn about statistics, data and web marketing.

So of the top spenders mentioned in the leaked report University of Phoenix buys a lot of search ads (under Apollo group). I know that they are measuring to lead and most likely sale. That appears to be money well spent. Are the rest of the companies sure that search is the right vehicle. Could they uplift search volume on the highly converting keywords by increasing spending via facebook or banners on related sites? Did they do the usability work to ensure only qualified leads (ie not Mickey Mouse) are making it through the forms on the site?

Stats like this give us insight into the world of big spenders. I believe that more companies should be big spenders - but only if they are ready to play with a full integrated marketing strategy that can pull and push levers to see what increases conversion, search visibility and/or reputation.

Here are some excepts from the AdAge report:

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June 2010 Google Adwords Spending
Company Adwords Spend in $ USD Millions
AT & T Mobility 8.08
Apollo Group 6.67
Expedia 5.95
Amazon 5.85
Ebay 4.25
BP 3.59
Hotels.com 3.30
JC Penney 2.46
Living Social 2.29
ADT Security 2.19
GM < 0.500
Walt Disney < 0.500
Eastman Kodak < 0.500
BMW < 0.500
Apple < 1.000
Intel < 1.000
Yellow Pages 1.200  

Adage also state:-

While the search-spending document obtained by Advertising Age is not a complete list of advertisers on Google, the accuracy of its data was verified by multiple sources with direct knowledge of spending levels.

Our review of $574 million of Google's U.S. billings over the first half of 2010 shows plenty of global corporations spending millions each month on search advertising, as well as a great many huge corporations that spend very little, if anything, at all on search. 

As a snapshot, it's also remarkable that Google's biggest advertisers, big monthly spenders like AT&T, Apollo Group and Amazon, individually accounted for less than 1% of Google's U.S. revenue in June. The top 10 advertisers in the document collectively accounted for just 5% of Google's U.S. revenue during the month.

The accounts listed are distributed broadly in terms of spending levels. The document shows 47 advertisers that spent more than $1 million in June; 71 that spent between $500,000 and $1 million, and 357 that spent between $100,000 and $500,000. These are direct-billed customers only, not the many thousands of small self-serve advertisers that make up Google's long tail, a key component in its $23 billion global annual revenue. 

Want to know more about web marketing analysis? Attend emetrics in Washington and hear me speak on search marketing, but more importantly, hear some statistical experts talk about tools, conversion, analysis and how to make useful recommendations.

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posted by Barbara 'webmama' Coll @ 10:08 AM     Permanent Link