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Optimisation smartens up retailer’s search success

Optimisation smartens up retailer’s search success

By Microsoft adCenter

Marks & Spencer (M&S) sells a wide selection of products online including clothing, home furnishings, flowers, food, and wine. The company runs ongoing PPC campaigns through its search agency Efficient Frontier and Microsoft adCenter. Its primary objectives were to increase its visibility, raise the volume of traffic to its website and boost orders from Live Search. So the Microsoft adCenter team and Efficient Frontier worked together to optimise the M&S search account, identifying quick wins as well as a long-term strategy for continued growth.

Creative solution

Microsoft adCenter and Efficient Frontier worked closely to optimise the M&S adCenter account. Together they re-structured the account and reviewed keywords, bidding strategy, ad copy, and targeting. Using their expert knowledge, the Microsoft adCenter team provided key recommendations including:

• Increasing the use of relevant keywords and adding negative
keywords to prevent ads being served on irrelevant searches
• Using dynamic text insertion to make ads more relevant and engaging
• Reviewing and suggesting ad copy to appeal to the target audience

The next step focused on capturing a greater proportion of searches
on high-volume and high-potential product areas including clothing,
flowers, wines, and lingerie. The team also created dedicated seasonal
optimisations to make the biggest impact during peak sales periods
such as Christmas, Valentine’s Day, and Mother’s Day.

Campaign results

The optimisation process helped increase the number of visitors to the M&S website and drive sales, which dramatically improved return on investment. Research revealed the following results:

Increased volume and click-throughs: Doubled the number of click-throughs from women’s clothing keywords between Christmas 2007 and Christmas 2008. Raised click volume for flower-related keywords by 450 percent between Valentine’s Day
2007 and 2008.

Boosted impressions: More than doubled the number of impressions served when comparing August 2007 and February 2008.

Stimulated orders and revenue: Increased the number of orders by
54 percent between Q2 and Q4 2007.

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