Directory level or individual product level
I own my own store and am trying to get adwords working... Im curious, for you guys that do your own affiliate or own your own shop and sell 100's of products.... Is it better to have products going to specific product page OR directory level with multiple products listed?
What do you guys have better results with and how do you group your advertising?
For instance if you sell "cars"
Do you market "honda" to the honda directory (page with honda accords, civics, hybrids, etc) page OR do you send traffic to the "honda accord ex" page?
I sell 100's of products that are grouped by upper level grouping and anyone of the 1000's of KW could be placed to a specific product or the entire upper level and i am having a hard time figuring out if i should focus traffic to a specific product or the entire upper level directory and let the customer navigate to the product that he/she likes....
Your input would be greatly appreciated!
What have your tests shown you?
What works for a store won't necessarily work for affiliate marketing, or vice versa. With a store, you start out with customers who are thinking of buying something and will navigate through logical layers to find what they want. There are exceptions, of course, but with AM, you generally have to show visitors that, gee, here's something they want to buy (or sign up for, or whatever) even though they didn't know it until they got to your site. It tends to be a different kind of selling.
-- This may be partially my own bias, because the worst results I ever got were from setting up affiliate links in "store mode", but I don't think I'm the only one with that experience.
In my experience, if a product has no clear "relatives" then going directly to the landing page for that product is best. Someone looking for an "acme potato peeler" really isn't interested in seeing a page with other acme products that aren't potato peeler related. If they have to search through the acme products page that might include knife sets, crock pots, and exploding anvils just to find the potato peeler, they'll be more than likely to hit the back button.
Now if you have different versions of the potato peeler from acme, a page that lists all of those can be helpful. You have the standard potato peeler, the pro version with a sharper blade, the extended version with the sharper blade and supergrip handle, and the ultra version that peels the potato automatically. Show all of those on page when someone clicks on the ad and you are helping your visitor make a more informed choice. Having something on the page that explains the differences also goes a long way to completing the sale. Keep the page focused and don't clutter it with non-potato peeler information.
If you're using PPC ads for the above scenario, you may want the related versions page for broad search terms. You probably want to do some testing to see if specific search words convert better when sent to the product page or the related versions page. So if some searches for "acme ultra potato peeler" they may be happier customers if their first stop is the ultra page, not the related versions page.