Google Trends : Find your potential customers

Google Trends

Did you ever wonder where your potential customers are? Is there consistent demand for your product online? What keyword or term will take you to relevant audience? These questions haunt many entrepreneurs or campaign managers who wish to reach their potential buyers. If you are one of them scratching your head, this post can help you. Google Trends indeed answers your queries so as to what Geo specific locations and keywords you should target to make your brand a great success.

Here are some key terminologies that we should be aware of before going to Google Trends.

  • Topics :  Topics are any queries or keywords that is searched on Google Search Engine. It can be  search query about a product such iPhone, property, festive offers, BMW cars or any such keyword that a user wants to know more about.
  • Categories : Google Trends has defined different categories that can help us fine tune our keyword research. These categories are Business, Entertainment, Health, Sci/Tech, Sports and Top stories. By default, All Categories are selected which means you are shown overall trending topics on Google. Top Stories are the hot topics being searched by users.
  • Top Charts: It is category wise ranking by most searched topics on Google in the previous year.

Now let’s see to how we can use Google Trends

Suppose we are promoting a fitness band and want to identify its potential customers in United States for online promotion campaign.

Let’s see how Google Trends can help with key insights to plan our  campaign.

Go to Google Trends (google.com/trends), type a keyword “Fitness band” and press enter.

Google-Trends-1
Snapshot 1:   Type keyword “Fitness band”

Now will see a graph (refer Snapshot 2 below) which indicates the search frequency for the keyword “Fitness band” in Google Search. Here, Vertical axis is Interest over time. As per Google the Interest over time is defined as the search interest relative to the highest point on the chart for the given region and time. A value of 100 is the peak popularity for the term. A value of 50 means that the term is half as popular. Likewise a score of 0 means the term was less than 1% as popular as the peak.

Google-Trends-2
Snapshot 2:      Trends for ‘Fitness band’ keyword

We can see the trends for Worldwide by default. Select country to United States , timeline to Past 12 months , Past 90 days and so on. Select particular category we require. The category selection is crucial as keywords can fall in different overlapping categories. Fitness band for example falls into electronics as well as Beauty & Fitness category. Depending upon selection the graph changes. This is so because audience can search the keyword Fitness band in multiple categories. We can do many permutation and combinations to check online demand category wise for our campaign. It depends on our campaign objective whether it is aimed to just increase brand awareness or focused on sales. We can focus on trends in all categories initially and then dig in more in specific categories. We can also customize  by filtering it by Web Search, Image Search, and so on.

Now here comes the beauty of Google Trends. Just scroll down and will see Interests over different sub regions like states and cities. Here as seen in snapshot 3, Kentucky is leading with perfect scale of 100 followed by Maryland with scale of 79. We can further click on any state and drill in more trends in specific cities and metros. Furthermore, we can find related queries and related topics on the rising trends just below subregion stats. Also, check and compare related queries and topics to get better understanding.

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Snapshot 3 : Interests with subregions

On top of the screen we will see compare option which enables us to add related queries and compare that with our existing keyword term or query. We can add and compare multiple queries at a time which helps us to take well informed decision on keyword targeting. As seen below in snapshot 4, the keyword “Fitness band” has more search volume than its related keyword.

Google-Trends-4
Snapshot 4: Compare multiple keywords

So this basic research we must do before promoting business online. This saves lot of efforts and money in later stages of campaign execution as we have a concise idea on where our audience is. Also we have insights of relevant keywords to search our product.

Online Marketing – Checkout Simplified Basics !

online marketing

Online Marketing and its Overview

Internet Marketing or Online Marketing is holistic approach of promoting your brand on internet with the use of digital strategies, technology platforms and making your website search friendly. Online Marketing is often used interchangeably with Online Advertising but the latter is part of Online Marketing. While Online Advertising is paid, there are many other dimensions of Online Marketing such as SEO (Search Engine Optimization) which is free.

To make it simpler, Online Marketing is broadly classified in below types:

  • SEO (Search Engine Optimization)
  • PPC (Pay Per Click)
  • Display Advertising
  • Social Media Marketing
  • Email Marketing
  • Affiliate Marketing
SEO (Search Engine Optimization)

Search Engine Optimization are the techniques to streamline your website in such a way that your website is shown in search engine results for a particular keyword or query. In other words this means to make your website search engine friendly. Google indexes and ranks your website based on different factors. This is long haul strategy that encompasses – On page, On site and Off site factors contributing to its success. On page factors typically has to do with content of the website which includes keyword research and competitor study. On site factors include site layout, navigation, site speed, etc. Off Site factors are typically backlinks referring to your website. Different Blogs and websites refer your links or in other words they provide links to your website. This link is called backlink. As per latest Google algorithm, the backlinks from relevant sites and ones with high domain authority are the only backlinks that increases your site rank. Although you don’t need to pay to Google or search engines for SEO, it is highly competitive and exhaustive process.

PPC (Pay Per Click)

PPC (Pay per Click) also referred as SEM (Search Engine Marketing) is paid form of promotion. The text or Image Ads are displayed based upon your search query. Your search query triggers Keywords that advertisers (one who create and run Ads on Google) are bidding. Google algorithm decides which Ad is to be served and on how it will be listed based on advertiser bidding and its targeting criteria. The targeting criteria generally includes Demographics, Geo targeting (location), and Gender targeting parameters. If you want to promote your website or products on Google Search Engine and its associate partners, you will need to create campaign on Google AdWords. Detailed guidance on Google Adwords and its best practices will be covered in our successive blog posts. We will cover great details of AdWords and also help you prepare for AdWords certification.

Social Media Marketing

If you want to create awareness and boost interest of your website or business, Social Media Marketing (SMM) is must for you. It is a platform that creates engagement with your audience. People will like, share and comment your posts which will increase your brand’s presence and build trust among your potential customers. Strong strategy of social media marketing can drive huge sales.

Social Media Marketing benefits:

  • Strengthen your Brand Awareness.
  • Engage your audience into activity – click, like, comment, share and also Sales.
  • Excellent brand recall – People will remember and recall your brand more.
  • Boosts relevant website traffic.

The most popular Social media platforms are Facebook, Google +, Linkedin, Twitter, Instagram to name a few.

Email Marketing

Email marketing is popular tool to nurture your leads. When a prospect is interested in your products and offerings by your online marketing efforts, he/she is likely to visit your website and request a quote or fill contact form. Now that you have their email address, it is crucial for you to keep the prospect interested by mailing them relevant or more customized solutions for them. Email marketing are therefore the efforts directed towards converting your interested leads into customer. There are various bulk mailing tools both free and paid that can suffice for small businesses. For larger enterprises, I would suggest them to go for premium ones. We will cover about different tools and strategy for Email marketing in great details later.

Display Advertising

Display Advertising are banner Ads shown on websites or Google search to promote products. The Ads are served by Adserver. The banner Ads are linked to the product website which merchant wants to promote. There are all kinds of sizes available but Google suggests Ad sizes 336×280 large rectangle, 300×250 medium rectangle, 728×90 leaderboard, 300×600 half page and on mobile 320×100 large mobile banner to be most successful. Wider Ad sizes are more readable hence perform better. We can promote and create banners Ads campaigns on many platform but the most popular platform is Google AdWords.

Affiliate Marketing

It is evergreen form of online marketing which is Revenue (Sale) centric. Here, Merchant ties up with Affiliate Network to deliver its campaign based on commission basis. The commission here is percentage of Sale. The commission rates vary from 5 % to 16% of Sale depending what category of product you are promoting. Affiliate Network keeps some part of their commission as their margin and passes on the rest to its Affiliate. Website such as news, blogs, deals and coupon sites which are run campaign from Affiliate Network are known as Affiliates or Publishers. Typically, the commission share between Affiliate and Affiliate Network is 75:25. Affiliate Programs are most popular are used if you want better ROI in terms of Ad spend.