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17 Cool Landing Pages I Wish I Made
Have you ever done a search online or clicked on a Facebook ad to land on something way cooler than you expected? Perhaps as the page is loading you are starting to regret your impulsive click because your oven just beeped and your pizza is ready! But then something magical happens … You land on a page that is so gosh darn cool that your pizza starts to burn. Okay, maybe this isn’t a good hypothetical after all—who would ever let their pizza burn?

A sad, sad sight.

My point is this: The cruel truth is that coming across a truly cool landing page does not happen all that often. When it does, those moments for marketers should not be overlooked! In fact, the majority of the cool landing pages you see are inspired by other cool landing pages, which is why we put this cool post together—to inspire you! Haven’t you ever heard that imitation is the sincerest form of flattery?

But before we dive into some pretty cool landing page examples, let’s first consider…

What is a landing page?

When I first heard the term “landing page,” I figured every web page must be a landing page (as in a page that you land on), right? Wrong! To be considered a “landing page,” that page needs to be landed on through a marketing initiative. Whether that be a sponsored Google ad of some form (search, display, etc.), a paid social ad on Facebook, Instagram, etc., or an email campaign. To truly be considered a “landing page” in the marketing world, there needs to be a transaction that caused that individual to land on that page. Unbounce sums this up nicely: “In digital marketing, a landing page is a standalone web page, created specifically for the purposes of a marketing or advertising campaign.”

Now that we understand the definition of a landing page, it is important to remember that there are tons of uncool landing pages out there. In fact, only 22% of businesses are satisfied with their current landing page conversion rates. If your landing pages are not cool, then the conversion rates likely are not either. Here are 17 very COOL landing pages to get inspired and then work on improving your conversion rates.

1. Sandals Honeymoons

I am on the hunt for honeymoon ideas, and I came across this page when doing some research on Google. This page struck me as cool for so many reasons. First, look at the people, could they be any cooler?

Seriously, though, this page is...
5 Essential Strategies for Marketing to Generation Z
Everyone talks about what makes millennials tick or how to market to them, so we forget they’re old news. Sure, we'll still need to market to millenials for years to come, but it's time to start focusing on Generation Z.

At first glance, millennials and Gen Z might seem very similar. But if you look a little deeper, you start to see the subtle differences between the two generations—and these subtle differences are important to us marketers.

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If you want to build your Gen Z customer base, then read on to learn the five ways you can successfully tweak your digital marketing strategy to tailor it for this younger audience. Here's a preview of our top five strategies for marketing to Generation Z:

Sell experiences, not products
Video, video, video
Rethink that major influencer campaign
Engage with customers
Highlight your dedication to privacy
Who are Generation Z?

Before we can even begin to think about creating a digital marketing strategy, we first need to define Generation Z.

Also referred to as the iGeneration, Generation Z covers anyone who was born between 1995 to the mid 2000s, and this demographic makes up 32% of the global population. Digitally savvy, they grew up with mobiles and iPads, and they don’t remember a time before the internet—unlike millennials.

The attention span of a Gen Zer is just eight seconds—that’s four seconds less than their millennial counterparts. So first impressions really do count. You either grab their attention in that short space of time, or you’ll be forgotten forever.

If your target market is Generation Z, then try these five strategies to increase brand awareness, leads, and sales.

1. Sell experiences, not products

Members of Gen Z aren’t interested in hard sells. Because they’ve grown up with the internet, they’re immune to obvious marketing campaigns. They don’t want to hear about why your product is so amazing; they want to know how it will benefit them. More specifically, what experience will your product bring them?

According to Mention, 25% of what you sell is your product. The additional 75% is the intangible feeling that comes with said product.

Think about Brandy Melville. You’d never know they were Italian, given the chilled, California vibes they project, but that’s because they’re really good at selling the experiences their clothes bring.

Sure, their clothes are...
Big Changes Coming to Google Ad Delivery & Facebook Ad Targeting
Both Google and Facebook have recently announced important changes coming to their respective advertising platforms—changes that every business and digital marketing agency should be aware of.

On the Google side of things, accelerated ad delivery is going away in the coming weeks. And on the Facebook side of things, your prospects will soon have the ability to keep you from using off-Facebook behavioral data to retarget them on the platform.

Let’s discuss each of these changes in turn.

Google to sunset accelerated delivery next month

As of September 17, 2019, you’ll no longer have the option to select accelerated ad delivery for new search or Shopping campaigns; instead, you’ll have to opt for standard delivery. As for your existing campaigns, Google will automatically migrate them to standard delivery on October 1. Accelerated delivery will remain available for display and video campaigns.

When you select accelerated delivery, you tell Google to enter the ads within that campaign into every auction for which they’re eligible until your daily budget runs out. Alternatively, when you select standard delivery, you tell Google to spread your budget out over the course of the day (or over the course of whatever period you’ve scheduled your ads to run). Selecting standard delivery means withholding your ads from some of the auctions for which they’re eligible.

Here’s what Google has offered as an explanation:

“[Accelerated delivery] isn’t effective for campaigns that aren’t limited by budget. And for campaigns that are limited by budget, this method can increase CPCs due to increased competition early in the day, or unintentionally spend most of your budget in earlier time zones.”

Auction prices fluctuate throughout the day due to changes in the level of demand for ad space; the greater the demand at a given time of day, the higher your cost per click will be. Because accelerated delivery means you’re entered into every auction for which you’re eligible until your budget runs out, opting for it substantially reduces your chances of capitalizing on the low-cost opportunities that emerge throughout the day—something that small businesses with limited budgets should generally aim to do. 

Regarding early time zones, Google is referring to the fact that your ad schedule is based on your time zone—not the time zones of the people you’re reaching...
Facebook Ads for Restaurants: 11 Tips to Bring More Revenue to Your Table!
Ah, one of my favorite industries to write about! I love food, and I love eating at restaurants. That’s why the restaurant industry is such a fun one to write about, because I get to think about two of my favorite subjects: food and marketing.

There are many pros and cons to being a marketer in a popular vertical like the restaurant industry. Yes, it is “easy” to market an industry that people are naturally drawn to, but the biggest challenge restaurant marketers face is the insane level of competition. Everyone needs to eat, so why should someone choose your restaurant over the one down the street, or the other one in a more scenic location, or that other one in a more affordable price range? Standing out against so much competition is definitely the biggest challenge for marketers.

Long gone are the days where restaurant marketers could take out an ad in the local paper, post some mouth-watering food flyers around town, and assume that word-of-mouth would be enough to recruit hungry customers. Now, restaurant marketers need to have a robust social strategy in order to keep the orders firing in. Here, I’m going to share 11 tips to get the most reservations and revenue out of Facebook ads for restaurants:

Use location targeting
Target people most likely to dine with you
Expand your reach with lookalike audiences
Intrigue customers with atmosphere
Promote your positive press
Entice new customers with fun free events
Show off your staff
Plan for seasonal boosts
Take advantage of ad scheduling
Speak to your unique dining experience
Show off your happy diners
But first, why Facebook?

So why is Facebook the place to be for restaurant marketers? Facebook is a popular place for people to discover new things, like restaurants! In fact, 49% of people actually search Facebook to find new restaurants.

The fact that people are now using Facebook for restaurant discovery, much like Yelp, is pretty astounding. On top of those people, you also have Facebook users just going about their business who also happen to need to make a reservation for their friends coming to town on Saturday. And then there your ad is, showing off your sizzling fajita special, your juicy hand-packed burgers, or your unforgettable homemade brownie sundae. Oh, and there just happens to be a CTA enticing this individual to make an easy online reservation. Who could resist...
Conversion Rate Benchmarks: Find Out How YOUR Conversion Rate Compares
Whether you’re in lead gen or ecommerce, managing your business’s online advertising accounts means keeping tracking of a bunch of different metrics. You use search impression share to judge how well you’re performing in the Google Ads auction. You use engagement rate to see whether your messaging is resonating with your Facebook audiences. Across both platforms, you turn to click-through rate to determine how compelling your ad copy really is.

These metrics exist for a reason: They’re important. Driving high engagement rates from your cold Facebook audiences, for example, is integral to building out your remarketing pool.

But here’s the thing: Impressions and clicks don’t keep the lights on. If that were the case, everyone would be running a successful small business.

If you want to drive substantial returns on your online advertising spend—which, of course, we assume you do—achieving high conversion rates and low costs per conversion has to stay at the top of your mind. Otherwise, your competitors will swallow you whole.

A key step towards driving high conversion rates and low costs per conversion, of course, is defining what those things look like. What’s a high Google Ads conversion rate? What’s a good Facebook Ads cost per conversion? And how does conversion rate optimization change depending on what industry you’re in?

These are the questions we’re here to answer. With this guide, our goal is to provide the essential conversion rate benchmarks you need to get your conversion rate optimization (CRO) efforts started on the right foot. Here’s what you’ll walk away with:

Average Google Ads conversion rates by industry
Average Google Ads cost per conversion by industry
Average Facebook Ads conversion rate by industry
Average Facebook Ads cost per conversion by industry
Google Ads mobile conversion rate benchmarks by industry
Google Ads mobile cost per conversion benchmarks by industry
Google Shopping (ecommerce) conversion rates by industry
Google Shopping (ecommerce) costs per conversion by industry
Bing Ads conversion rate benchmarks by industry
Bing Ads cost per conversion benchmarks by industry
Let’s get started!

Conversion rate benchmarks for Google Ads

The average conversion rate across Google Ads is 4.40% on the search network and 0.57% on the display network.

It’s no surprise that we see a much higher...
Employee Spotlight: Chelsea Guida, World's Greatest Dad
WordStream has some impressive employees in our ranks: from industry influencers to marathon runners, from analysts to authors. The Employee Spotlight series aims to highlight the talented individuals who work here. Each month, we’ll be featuring an interview here on the blog and on our social accounts.

For this month’s Employee Spotlight, we’re featuring Chelsea Guida. From Syracuse, New York, Chelsea moved to Boston to work in digital marketing. At WordStream, she works with a portfolio of clients on the Managed Services team here at WordStream. We talked about her experience studying PPC in school, her love for Starbucks, her compulsive sticky-note habit, and more!

How did you hear about WordStream? Why did you want to work here?

I studied integrated marketing in college, and for one class we had to register for the Google online marketing challenge. I had to go and find a company, and Google would then give that company $250 to use for online advertising. I had to create a PPC campaign for the company, and then I saw the affect the campaign had and started to understand the top of the funnel and how to work with leads. After that project, I became really interested in online advertising.

I had always wanted to live in Boston, so I only applied to jobs in Boston. When I found a job opening at WordStream, I was excited because I had found PPC so interesting. Once I started the interview process, I thought WordStream seemed like such a cool company to work for—and not just the free swag and perks.The fact that co-workers were also friends and everyone here was willing to help you learn was really appealing to me. Now that I’m here, I think that’s totally true, I could go up to anyone in my department and ask for help, and they’d sit with me happily to figure it out.

What’s the best thing you’ve learned on the job?

Honestly, the best thing I’ve learned is how to send emails. I call my boss here the email queen—she blushes, but I say it anyway because she's so amazing sending emails. It sounds like a weird skill, but I send literally hundreds of emails a day. When you're fully managing someone's account, they want to have a constant pulse on everything that's going on—which means my emails have to be on point.

What’s your favorite project that you’ve worked on here at WordStream?

Targeting reports are my favorite. Like the rest of my team...
How to Beat PPC Seasonality with MSAN & Google Display Network
When I’m sweating bullets in the oppressive August heat, I want nothing more than to dive into an ice bath fit for a polar bear. But when it’s snowing boatloads, I dream of lounging like the inner feline goddess I am, sprawled out in front of every sunbeam in my reach. I like to think I’m always ahead of the seasonality curve—ready for the change in weather, in activities, in clothing.

And, most importantly for marketers like us, the seasonal changes that impact advertising.

Not the case for every business …

Some cases of seasonality can be expected: A local florist can assure their paid search accounts soar near our loving predictable Valentine’s Day and Mother’s Day holidays (even if she would rather have jewelry—sorry, Mom!). A costume shop can expect to see wigs and accessories flying off their virtual shelves come October; lawn care companies to surge in spring; ecommerce to boom for our now week-long Black Friday celebrations.

But other seasonal changes are less predictable, and we need to be ready. Every single advertiser experiences some kind of seasonality. How do we identify our lull periods and more importantly how do we optimize for success in our lull periods? Well, my dear Watson, I’m glad you asked!

In this guide to planning for PPC seasonality, you’ll learn how to:

Identify seasonal patterns
Make a seasonal dip in search volume work for you
Use GDN and MSAN to beat seasonal slumps
Create effective display ads for both networks
Identifying seasonal patterns

“So, Lauren, how do I know when I’m experiencing seasonality if it isn't as obvious as it is for a florist?”

The first step I recommend is to pull up some year-over-year comparison reports to look at fluctuations in impressions served between years. Take the example below. This client, who is a chiropractor, surprisingly sees a consistent dip in the middle of the year around June and then again when the holiday season starts to ramp up.

Although my client below had a pretty prevalent dip at the same time every year, this data can fluctuate and change a bit from year to year depending on culture changes and adaptation—I mean, how many articles this week have you seen titled “10 Things Millennials Ruined This Year”? (Sorry, everyone.)

Things are going to change, but you can use these “seasonal” bumps and fluctuations to revisit and tap into your...
Goodbye, Average Position: Everything You Need to Know
In early 2019, Google Ads announced that it will be sunsetting the average position metric later this year. At the same time, they launched four new metrics that advertisers could use in its place.

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Now, we know that average position will stop being supported in late September 2019. (The most recent target date we have from Google is September 30, 2019.) That date is getting closer—which means you need to make sure you’re ready for the official sunsetting of average position. Here, we’re going to tell you everything you need to know to prepare, including:

Why average position is going way
How you can use the new metrics
What WordStream thinks about this change
Why is average position going away?

Think about the variety of unique search engine results pages (SERPs) there are for ads these days. Sometimes there are three ads at the top. Sometimes four. Sometimes there is only one ad at the top and the rest are all the way down at the bottom.

Since Google moved away from the “one SERP fits all” strategy in early 2016, average position stopped being an indicator of where on the page your ad is displayed. Consider the screenshots below. Both of these ads are considered to be in position four on the SERP:

One of these ads will likely have better performance than the other.

Instead of telling you where on the page your ad appeared, average position has evolved into a proxy for ad rank. For example, if your average position is 3.1, you can infer that most of the time, two other ads had beaten you in the auction. But you still have no idea how often your ad is showing above the organic results.

This presents a problem because ads that appear above the organic results tend to perform better than those that don’t. Without the ability to tell how often your ad appears on top, it becomes much more difficult to answer questions like Will increasing bids improve my click through rate? Or Can I decrease my bids without losing out on performance?

In order to answer these questions (and others), Google created four new metrics.

What are the new metrics?

These new metrics make reference to two relatively new terms within the search space—“top” and “absolute top”—both of which refer to positions on the SERP. “Top” refers to any ad that appears above the organic results. “Absolute top” refers to the very first ad that appears...
13 of the Most Persuasive Ads We’ve Ever Seen
Have you ever gotten home after a long day and were delightfully surprised by a package—or, let’s be honest, pile of packages—waiting at your front door? It’s one of my favorite things, and I like to think that my past-self bought a gift for my future-self. I usually don’t remember why my past-self bought the gift in the first place, because most of the time I bought it spur-of-the-moment. Dang persuasive ads. 

But not all persuasive ads are created equally, and not all of them lead to delightful surprises. Here are 13 of the best, most effective persuasive ads we’ve ever seen—but first let’s make sure we’re clear on what persuasive ads do and why you’d want to use them.

What is a persuasive ad, anyway?

Persuasive ads are advertisements designed to elicit a desired action, usually purchasing a product. Remember the persuasive essay assignments from school? In those, you were writing to convince your reader. Persuasive ads are similar—they aim to convince potential customers to buy the featured product.

If you’re advertising a product, this technique is powerful. Persuasion can be used in almost any of your marketing campaign—across television, digital, print, audio, billboards, even PPC. We looked far and wide across all of these mediums for the best examples of persuasive ads, and we rounded up 13 ads that are exceptionally persuasive. Let’s take a look at what these ads are doing well and, most importantly, how you can use these techniques in your own ads.

1. Streeteasy: Find your place

Streeteasy used the “Find your place” campaign to advertise their New York real estate mobile app. The campaign was posted all over subways throughout the city and highlighted sections of the city in a relatable way, because finding a place to live makes everyone feel a little bit like Goldilocks. 

Why it works

This campaign had a subtle, inside joke quality to it—everyone gets wanting to live within walking distance from your job—but also needing to be far enough away from your coworkers. Streeteasy leaned into the *nudge, wink* feeling of solidarity between city dwellers to evoke humor in the face of a daunting task: finding a new place to live. 

How to do it

What makes your product a great solution? What annoying problems does it solve? Lean into that. People are constantly looking for ways to make their lives easier; use your ads to...

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Sep 17 2019