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Digital Marketing News Round Up: Expanding Sections and Duplicate Legal Boilerplate Allowed, Bid Adjustments in Analytics and Adwords Successes

Nathan Kinnear

In this week’s glorious edition of digital marketing news: Google’s head of webspam, Matt Cutts, stars in an explosive double bill, putting marketing minds at rest over the use of expanding sections and legal boilerplate. Then there is a shiny new ‘bid adjustments’ feature in Analytics, and word from Google that their ‘enhanced campaign’ feature is worth checking out.

Text in expanding sections is fine… unless you’re spamming

Kicking off our Matt Cutts’ double bill: clarification via the Google Webmaster Help YouTube channel that hidden text achieved with expandable sections does not break any of Google’s webmaster guidelines.

Usually implemented using JavaScript or AJAX, expanding sections allow text-heavy sites to display information in a more user-friendly way. These sections allow site visitors to pick and choose the information they would like to see, rather than forcing them to struggle with huge walls of texts (and the scrolling fatigue that results!)

Cutts goes on to mention that this isn’t a licence to game Google. If the expandable content is stuffed with keywords and isn’t intended for the user, you are going against their guidelines and can expect to be punished.

Duplicate legal boilerplate won’t hurt your site… unless you’re spamming

In a video released just two days prior to the first discussed, Cutts’ took time to clarify Google’s stance on another key issue: unavoidable duplicate content. It’s common practice, especially in the financial services, pharmaceutical and other industries to post various pieces of legally compulsory boilerplate: terms and conditions, privacy policies and disclaimers.

Cutts claims that Google understands the need for the presence of this content and claims that, at worst, “[Google] might at most not want to count that”, adding:

“it’s the sort of thing where if we were to not rank that stuff well, then that would probably hurt our overall search quality”.

Again, this shouldn’t be taken as an invitation to hide your worst tactics within your legalese. Cutts offers the following caveat:

“Unless the content that you have that’s duplicated is spammy or keyword stuffing or something like that – then an algorithm or a person might take action on it”

New bid adjustments report in Google Analytics

Google have introduced a new report in Analytics called ‘Bid Adjustments’. This report allows you to analyse the performance of each PPC bid adjustment across different user devices, locations and times of day.

The bid adjustments report can be found in Google Analytics under ‘Traffic Sources’ (click ‘Advertising’ and then select ‘AdWords’).

Google uses the following example to help explain the new addition:

“Imagine a hotel chain has set Time bid adjustments of +20% on Saturday and Sunday after observing a better ROI on those days. Using this new report in GA, the hotel chain now observes that their ROI on Sundays is actually higher than on other days of the week. The hotel chain's analyst finds that customers book more expensive rooms and longer stays on Sundays. Using this information, the hotel chain increases its existing Time bid adjustment for Sundays.”

Enhanced campaign results

Google introduced enhanced campaigns for its AdWords product release details about successes for those who’ve upgraded. The US centric list includes:

Pizza Hut:

  • 20% increase in mobile ROI
  • More than 60% increase in mobile CTR
  • 17% decrease for cost per order on smartphones

Autobytel (Car owners and buyers site):

  • 10% increase in conversions
  • Now manage 30% fewer campaigns, freeing up time for further optimisation on current campaigns

Miller’s Bakery (New Jersey family-run bakery):

  • 10-20% increase of in-store visits
  • 100% increase of business during peak times
  • 20-35% increase in clicks from nearby cities

We announce the latest digital marketing news every Monday, so don’t forget to check back next week. You can also keep up to date by following us on Twitter.

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