ZATO Welcomes Sarah Vlietstra to the Team

sarah vlietstra with ZATO PPC Marketing agency

We couldn’t be happier to welcome Sarah Vlietstra to the ZATO PPC Marketing team. 👏 🎉 💥 Sarah was ZATO’s Google rep for almost 2 years, and we liked working with her so much we decided it made sense to bring her on board the ZATO team! Representing Google for our clients means she already worked with us on numerous current accounts, and we’re looking forward to using that to our advantage as we strive to give our clients the best PPC management we are able to offer. When not helping us with Googley questions, Sarah was working with hundreds of other agencies, and thousands of Google Ads accounts over the past 6 years, gathering specific insight into industry benchmarks, trends and data. Because of her time representing Google, she excels at implementing Google Ads best practices in ZATO clients to maximize machine learning applied intelligently through a human framework. …

Does Google Shopping Query Filtering Still Work in 2020?

google shopping query filtering strategy

Nearly 6 years ago, I watched a video of Martin Roettgerding (who would later become my friend) giving a presentation on a brilliant strategy he had devised to better control Google Shopping campaigns. I tested this in our ZATO accounts, developed my own process for building it out and managing it, and then recorded my walk-through on Search Engine Land in a massive 4000+ word post: A Step-By-Step Guide To Query-Level Bidding In Google Shopping. I wanted to re-release this content for you on the ZATO blog (giving proper credit to the original post, of course), with learnings from the past 5-6 years since we began using this Shopping campaign strategy.   TL;DR: A *lot* has changed in the world of Google Shopping, but we continue to find value in filtering queries into the correct campaign for better bidding and budget control in your account and think you should still …

No Long-Term PPC Contracts Required? Then How Do ZATO Clients Stay?!

Google Ads Questions for small business owners

I wanted to pause for a minute in my normal Ecommerce PPC and Shopping Ads writing, to discuss a little family business. That is, how does ZATO maintain clients if we don’t require long-term commitments? I thought it would be good to share my beliefs from a marketing and business perspective, as well as give you insights into how we think about things at ZATO as it specifically relates to our clients. You may be considering joining our client-list, or even referring people over to us, and I hope to be as transparent as possible, so you can understand a little of how ZATO “ticks” in this regard.   The Big Question with Contracts At ZATO, we have no long-term commitments. Not one. Every, single, one of our clients (biggest to smallest) is on a month-to-month basis with a 30 Day Written Out. You want to walk away from ZATO …

How to Track Surfaces Across Google (Free Shopping Ads) Revenue in Google Analytics

google merchant center feed rules for link attribute

Have you seen the new free Google Shopping Ads (named, Surfaces Across Google, by… well, Google) yet in your Google Merchant Center account? One of the frustrations with the report in Google Merchant Center is that it only shows clicks. Clicks give us some information, it’s interesting to see what percentage of traffic is being sent between paid and free. We can also surmise some level of attempt at revenue based on this and average Shopping Ads performance, and of course if your feed is locked in and you get a lot of solid traffic… you’re just happy to get free clicks! That being said, we at ZATO like to optimize to user behavior and purchase intent as much as possible. With the help of some friends on Twitter (thanks Martin Roettgerding and Richard Fergie!) we dug into this and figured out how to track these clicks into Google Analytics. …

Limited Budget? 5 Reasons to Consider ZATO’s SMB Program

Google Ads Questions for smb owners

First things first, it’s harder than ever to succeed at Google Ads with a small budget. That doesn’t mean it’s impossible, but we can’t ignore the fact that it is harder to do than ever before. If you have been seeing your Costs and Cost Per Clicks (CPCs) rising faster than your ability to raise your budget, you’ve likely wondered if Google Ads is even worth it for you. Well, this is the entire reason ZATO started our Small Budgets Program!   Not a “small business” but don’t have a lot of cash to burn on Google Ads? We objectively call our program the “Small Budget Program” and not “Small Business Program”. There are multiple reasons as to why an account may be smaller budget… regardless of business size. Maybe your company recently had to cut costs, maybe you run a small business that is just getting into the Google …

Free Google Shopping Listings?! What It Means for You

Google announced today that they are now offering Free Shopping Ads for retailers and brands. Here is a great article by my friend, Ginny Marvin, announcing it (and where I first heard of it): Google Shopping Opens to Free Listings. When I first started advertising on Google in 2010, I remember free Froogle listings and how bummed we were when it moved into the paid offering in 2012. Based on the announcement headlines, it seemed at first glance like we were circling back to those days of free access. Sounds great for SMBs, but the actual situation is a little more complex and I thought it fair to unravel the details of what is happening.   I should be careful to not appear overly negative, this will certainly give SMBs and advertisers access to free traffic they didn’t formerly have access to. However, we’re not remotely back at the 2011 …

Keep Presenting Benefits. Or, How Marketing Hasn’t Changed in a Pandemic.

claude hopkins scientific advertising

After being served my umpteenth “QUARANTINED, ALONE, AND DESTITUTE AMIDST CORONAVIRUS? BUY THIS TO CHANGE YOUR LIFE.” marketing pitch on Facebook, I decided I needed to scratch the itch of writing and get my thoughts down. Should you discuss the current pandemic in your ads, or not? Should you use the *gasp* coronavirus in marketing efforts at this point? What emails should you send? All of these are questions many advertisers have right now, and as I have been considering these same things, I think the thing we need to do is remain faithful to a core tenet of marketing: Highlight the ways your product/service benefits your customer, and they should purchase it (insert qualifications of other factors, for instance, they may not have the money to purchase it and in that case no perfect marketing message will work). In other words, our marketing shouldn’t change based on the crisis, …

More Free Stuff: The ZATO Microsoft Ads In-Market Audience List

We released our ZATO Google Ads Audience Targeting List FREE to the internet a little over a month ago and one of the questions we kept seeing in various social channels were “can you guys do this with Microsoft Ads?” Well… with the help of our awesome Microsoft Ads friends (thank you SO much John Lee and Christi Olson), we did! And just like the Google Ads Audience Targeting List, we want to share it with the PPC Community! Woo! BONUS: We included a targeting list for LinkedIn as well! Since LinkedIn is owned by Microsoft, you can target audiences via Company, Industry, and Job Function in Microsoft Ads… and now here is a FULL list of Industry and Job Function Audiences. To our knowledge, this is the only list on the interwebz of it’s kind, we’re biased, but we think that’s pretty cool!   The ZATO Microsoft Ads Audience …

Here is A Coronavirus Placement Exclusion List for Google Ads

how to exclude placement lists in google ads

After a client requested that we pull their ads off of as many news sites as possible because of the increasing Covid-19 Pandemic, we thought it made sense to cease marketing to these unique web pages as people seek out information about the pandemic. Therefore we compiled this placement list from ZATO clients of various news organizations websites to exclude, and thought we would share it with the broader PPC community. Feel free to add them in as exclusions if you feel so inclined. PLEASE NOTE: these are by no means comprehensive lists and we are updating it as we go, and there may be holes in this list. If you have your own list that you think would be helpful to add and you would be willing to share it, please email it to [email protected] so we can investigate it. Excluding website URLs at the account level in Google …

Free Stuff: The ZATO Google Ads Audience Targeting List of Affinity Categories & In-Market Segments

I want to start this post by introducing myself. My name is Chris (that’s me in the picture), I’m fairly new at ZATO but I’ve learned so much about coffee (and PPC) in my time here. I have a background in team-management and sales and I love being organized, efficient, and relentlessly optimistic. Here at ZATO, I’m tasked with growing and developing our new Google Ad’s for Small Budgets Program… But enough about me…   The ZATO Google Ads Audience Targeting List of Awesome Let’s make this quick and to the point. We love running audience targeting here at ZATO and sometimes we need a complete list of Google’s Affinity Categories and In-Market Segments. The problem is, a full list is very hard to find. Until now!         Wait… What are Affinity Categories and In-Market Segments? What is audience targeting? Here is Google’s definition of audience targeting: …