fbadsFacebook is making it a lot easier to measure the amount of new business you get from ads on the social media site, according to a new announcement from the company.


Facebook has always made it easy to see how your ads are performing in terms of clicks and views, but gauging actual sales from ads hasn’t been so easy. Now, a mew metric called ‘conversion lift measurement’, Facebook claims they can accurately measure the amount of business attributed to ads.

Here’s how conversion lift is measured:

  • When a Facebook campaign begins, two groups are created. One is a random test group of people that see the ads in the campaign, and the other is a control group of people that don’t see the ads.
  • Advertisers share conversion data with Facebook throughout the campaign. Facebook determines additional lift generated from the campaign by comparing conversions in the test and control groups.
  • Any increase in sales in the test group is the result of a ‘conversion lift’ provided by the Facebook ads.

The best part of online advertisement is being able to track nearly every aspect of your advertisement’s performance, but there are still gaps where marketers have had to rely on faith and intuition. Thanks to conversion lift measurement, there’s now one less blind spot.


Do you know the fastest way to lose potential customers on your website? You might think it would be by creating a page with poor usability, illegible text, or you could get creative and put offensive images on your front page. No matter your choice, there is something that can lose visitors before they even get the chance to see any of those options – long loading times.

Consumers simply don’t accept having to wait for what someone else can offer faster, and this is especially true online. The average consumer is willing to wait approximately five seconds before they become annoyed or frustrated with being forced to wait. If your site takes longer than that for the average user, it is practically guaranteed you are hemorrhaging visitors who aren’t willing to wait.

Long loading times also hurt your site and loses you visitors in a few less direct ways, most notably in rankings. While there are many things we don’t understand about Google’s ranking algorithm, we do know loading speed is one of the biggest factors in establishing your site’s perceived value and ranking.

So, how do you actually go about speeding up your website’s loading times and increasing its effectiveness? These five tips will help you get started:

  • Minimize on-page components. There are plenty of processes going on behind the scenes that can slow a site down. If you can combine style sheets or replace images with CSS, your site will be able to better load everything in a fast manner.
  • Compress large pages. Google has shown time and time again that sites with long-form content, videos, and shareable media are some of the best ways to rank higher, but all the extra content also means there is more to load. Try to compress your larger pages so they take up less space and consume less bandwidth when they load.
  • Use browser caching. Browser caching stores important elements from your site on a viewer’s hard drive in order to improve load times on repeat visits. A shocking number of webmasters forget to implement this tool, which can lead to slower load times for even your most loyal visitors.
  • Optimize visual content. The growing emphasis on visual content might have misled some website owners. If customers enjoy images, video, and graphics, why not fill your site with them? Unfortunately, too many improperly formatted graphics can cause a traffic jam and sluggish load speeds. Take the time to optimize visual content by limiting size, reformatting images into JPEG, and eliminating BMPs, GIFs, and TIFFs, and viewers will love you.
  • Eliminate unnecessary plugins. Particularly if you’re using WordPress, running multiple plugins contributes substantially to slower page load speeds. Though their convenience and ease of use make plugins an attractive option, using too many will cause your load speed to plummet and result in poor user experience. Remove any plugins you don’t absolutely need.

Over the past year, more than a few people have predicted the death of Facebook. They cite the shrinking number of teens signing up for the social site and the increasing difficulty for brands to get organic exposure as proof the end is near. But, a new report from Shareaholic show Facebook is still going strong.

Facebook has consistently been the leader in social referral traffic for years, and their share of traffic referrals is only growing especially during the last quarter of 2014. In fact, Shareaholic’s data suggests Facebook may be responsible for nearly a quarter of all traffic online.


The most popular social media site reached over 25% of the total share of visits to Shareaholic’s network through October and December, however it fell to 24.64% in December. Overall the site gained 2.27 percent since the third quarter.

The report confirms Pinterest’s popularity, as the data showed the site in second place. Still, even Pinterest can’t compete with Facebook’s share of traffic referrals. Pinterest’s share was only 5.06%, nearly five times less than Facebook.

Pinterest_Sticker_Icon1While Pinterest has quickly become one of the most popular social media sites around, it is no secret that the company struggles to attract men. The problem is so widely known, Wall Street Journal profiled the company’s attempts to bring more men onto their site today.

The latest estimates from comScore indicate up to 71% of Pinterest’s 72.5 million visitors in December 2014 were female, and a recent Pew Research survey found that only 13% of American online men use the site. Despite this, Pinterest claims it doubled the number of male users last year, but it still isn’t out of the woods.

Pinterest is currently making strides to increase revenue, which means the company has to convince advertisers it can reach a wide range of demographics – including men. To accomplish that, Pinterest told the Journal that it is working to make the site more “gender neutral” and has adjusted the sign-up process to give new users content-following suggestions based on their gender.

In an attempt to cater the site towards user interests, Pinterest announced a few interesting changes in the article. Perhaps most intriguing is the news Pinterest will begin personalizing search results based upon users’ gender.

For instance, depending on whether a male or female is browsing, a search for “workouts” generates fitness tips that are as different as the pages of “Men’s Fitness” and “Women’s Health.” In the past, the results for male users would have included a mix of men’s and women’s workout regimens. Pinterest says this feature, now available to all of its users, has led to increased engagement on the platform.

Pinterest never mentioned this algorithm in the past, but some tests from Marketing Land show the difference in search results is pretty stark. Here are some examples:

Results for “Party”


Results for “Shoes”


facbook-advertisingThe Super Bowl is quite possibly the biggest single day for advertisers. There aren’t many other times you’ll hear anyone proclaim they are watching something “just for the commercials.” But, it has always been difficult for online marketers to get into the mix. That all might be changing as Facebook has announced a new tool to help online advertisers target people interested in the “Big Game.”

The “Big Game” targeting segment allows advertisers to reach people specifically based on real-time online discussions related to the Super Bowl.

According to the announcement, the segment will go much further than simply targeting football fans. The “Big Game” segment will also include those liking, commenting, and sharing content related to party planning, recipes, or even flatscreen TV purchases in the days leading up to XLIX.

The targeting tool is also designed to be updated frequently, so that ads will be directed based on up-to-date information.

The new tool is a change of strategy for Facebook, who used interests and liked pages to target ads last year.

According to the social media platform, combining ads with live sporting events is a highly effective strategy for reaching specific targeted demographics. For example, it cites a cross-platform Nielsen study that analyzed at a Microsoft commercial that was shown during the 2014 Super Bowl and found Microsoft was able to reach 35% of persons 18 to 49 in the United States during a four-day run of the TV spot.

Using Facebook ads during this campaign allowed Microsoft to extend that reach to 57% of the national target of people 18-49. Among the younger 21 to 24-year-old audience, Microsoft more than doubled its reach, extending its TV reach of 24% to a combined TV-plus-Facebook reach of 53%.3.

The new targeting segment is available starting today for all advertisers. It can be found in the Facebook ads interface within the “Behaviors” section, under the “Seasonal and Events” category.

If anyone can tell you the secret to finding success on AdWords, it would be Frederick Vallaeys. Vallaeys was one of the first 500 employees at Google, and he spent over 10 years establishing AdWords as the hugely powerful platform it is today. Now, that he has left Google, Vallaeys is finally free to share his in-depth knowledge, which he recently did in an article for Search Engine Land.

Get the inside scoop on how Vallaeys manages his AdWords campaigns here.


Google has been aggressive about encouraging webmasters to make their sites more mobile-friendly, and it appears they will only become more strict in 2015. Google has started sending mass notifications to webmasters whose websites are not appropriately optimized for mobile.

The notifications, titled “fix mobile usability issues found on…” informs webmasters that their sites have mobile usability errors on all pages and thus will be “displayed and ranked appropriately for smartphone users.”

The notifications are popping up in Google Webmaster Tools and via email. Perhaps more interesting, Google is also sending the notifications to sites that are blatantly not mobile friendly. Typically these sites already know they are not mobile-friendly, but Google is sending alerts warning these webmasters nonetheless.

This is the latest sign that Google is almost certainly going to be amping up the role mobile optimization plays in search, and many believe there may be an outright “mobile ranking algorithm” in the close future.

The increased importance of mobile to Google is little surprise as mobile gradually overtakes desktop traffic. Google wants to ensure they are directing users to sites that will fit their needs wherever they are, and sites who aren’t mobile-friendly simply don’t deliver.

Here is a copy of the notification being sent out:


SEO is an essential part of growing your business online, but it can often seem impossible to keep up with the constantly changing trends and policies. With the never-ending changes coming from Google and the other major search engines, you could drive yourself crazy trying to react to every single update.

Thankfully, a recent infographic from CJG Digital Marketing breaks down the most important trends and changes coming for SEO in 2015. With these tips, you won’t have to fight to keep up to date with the latest changes because you’ll be prepared before they even happen.


AdWords In Store Visits

Online marketers love tracking and evaluating their campaigns and business owners love knowing their marketing is successful. Unfortunately, tracking is only able to capture so much information. For example, until recently it has been nearly impossible to properly track the impact of your ads on the amount of traffic you see coming into your store.

Thankfully, Google has released a new “Store Visits” metric in AdWords that should make it considerably easier to measure the effect your ads have on real-world store traffic.

Store Visits is an enhancement for AdWords Estimated Total Conversions, which estimates traffic based on anonymized data collected from a sample set of users who have enabled Location History on their device. Using this relatively small sample, Google predicts the number for the general population.

The tool is still in the early stages, and it is important to remember the prediction is exactly that. We are still a ways away from complete ability to understand the effect your ads are having, but the additional data can still be useful in trying to ensure your ads are driving the highest conversion rates possible.