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Google Premium Listings
upgrading from Adwords

 11:16 pm on Dec 31, 2002 (gmt 0)

Every few days, a thread is posted when a advertiser has his/her "Adwords" pushed up to "Premium Listings"

Now Every single time this has happened, advertisers have made positive comments about Premium Listings. outperforming Adwords by quite some distance.

What I can NOT understand is why more people do NOT use Premium Listings instead, I know there are a number of reasons, such as:

High Entry Cost
NO inventory available
CPM rates are very high (when doing CPC analysis)

but the most common one:

Lack of Contact from Google in this department!
(GoogleGuy u reading closely).

Now from my personal experience, I have NO problems with ANY of the above, especially the NO contact bit.

If push came to shove, I would phone Head of UK sales on her home number at 3am to spend some money, and I am sure she would not complain, this is the attitude I see at Google UK...Customer Service...Customer Service...

So either there is a problem in the USA, or better contact channels are required by Google in relation to Premium Listings.

The reason I am making this posting is for fellow members to realise that Google Premium Listings is a very good marketing tool, "often" cheaper than Adwords as NO bidding wars are being played.


latest campaign stats across Europe on Premium Listings:

Impressions: 71,943
Clicks: 9,637
CTR: 13,40

The highest creative achieved: 20.04 CTR
The lowest creative achieved: 7.27 CTR
(the above are based on creatives with at least 2,000 impressions), there are other niche keywords with a few hundrded impressions achieving up to 100% CTR.



 11:31 pm on Jan 23, 2003 (gmt 0)

interesting, its looks like it isn't always better to be in the premium spot after all.


 11:43 pm on Jan 23, 2003 (gmt 0)

Is it true that those premium ads do not show up on all partner site's? If that is thru, I'm gonna ask Google to give me back my right-sided adwords!

(personally, I too pick right-sided ads over top ones)


 11:52 pm on Jan 23, 2003 (gmt 0)

Yes, it is absolutely true that the Premium Ads do not show up on partner sites. GOOGLE does not get the per-click money unless you use the regular Ad-Words and your Premium money is more or less already locked in. Why should they care? They almost ran me out of business. Absolutely the worst advertisement I have done for my business.


 12:12 am on Jan 24, 2003 (gmt 0)

I am pretty sure if you are running an Adwords campaign and your adwords are pushed to the premium spot you are still going to appear on partner sites. If you are only running premium ads you won't show up on sponsor sites.


 12:14 am on Jan 24, 2003 (gmt 0)

why were your premium campaigns a waste of money?

What was the problem, no sales? Is your industry large or small profit margin? I had great results when I was bumped up to premium, but now I am debating paying for the premium listing I was planning.


 12:51 am on Jan 24, 2003 (gmt 0)

Small profit margin but very targeted. A good click through rate on Premium Ad-Words is anything above 3%. Mine was over 10%. You have no control as you do with regular Ad-Words or PPC Engines. You have a difficult time adding and removoving words.


 1:38 am on Jan 24, 2003 (gmt 0)

We don't have a sophisticated enough system to track ROI yet, but I can say one thing. We could NEVER justify paying for the top Adwords spot in our field. It's up around 2 dollars a click. I really doubt we would get ROI from that, judging by the number of visitors who actually buy (we can't monitor sales by referer, but we know about 4% of all visitors buy).

We get about 45 cents a click using premium listings. Granted we may get a few less targeted leads, but I doubt it's worth paying 4 times more for Adwords.

My decision is made on this basis: if Adwords costs less than the 45 cents a click we can achieve through Premium Ads, there's little reason to upgrade to Premium, and vice versa. There are some other considerations, like target volume, but that's basically it.

We tend to use both services, opting for Adwords for cheaper keywords.

[edited by: SlyOldDog at 1:50 am (utc) on Jan. 24, 2003]


 1:46 am on Jan 24, 2003 (gmt 0)

Because of the Premium listing, I was invited to a regional Google party, drink martinis, eat sushi.


 2:21 am on Jan 24, 2003 (gmt 0)


The problem I have is Premium Ad-Words are not per click but per impression and you have to sign a large contract. Changing keywords is also a pain.

I got a small rug for being in Premium Ad Words.


 2:46 am on Jan 24, 2003 (gmt 0)

"The highest creative achieved: 20.04 CTR
The lowest creative achieved: 7.27 CTR"

WOW...pretty good the best I ever saw was about 7 but mostly 4-5.

The one thing I really don't like it's the way they keep increasing the CPM price. Every 6 months when it's time to renew we are guaranteed a price increase. I like how they always say "You are a good customer otherwise it will be much worst"

100% within a year increased on CPM and we spend between $15,000 to $20,000 every month.

It used to be a very good deal a year ago now it's probably ok but we start to cut down on our spending with Google and put our money elsewhere. There are better deals out there.


 3:09 am on Jan 24, 2003 (gmt 0)

My rep tells me that 2.5% or better is really good. I have one keyword that creeps up to 13% but still a lowsy deal. I like PPC much better. I am having a problem with a competitor beating my PPC keywords to death and the engine won't do anything about it. I'm looking for a good deal.


 8:14 am on Jan 24, 2003 (gmt 0)

We have a CTR of 25%-30%. Mainly because we put the price on the copy.

The only problem is to get hold of the Google people who are always in meetings and it takes a whole day and lots of phone calls to change anything of the advert. With a very competitive enviroment where price is very important the system becomes inefficient.

Please Google, you need a better extranet where you can change the copy yourself and so on without depending on anybody from you. Even if you need to change your password you need to call/email them.

Otherwise, brilliant



 9:29 am on Jan 24, 2003 (gmt 0)

message #24
I am currently awaiting an answer to a major problem, and the client services have let me know how they are dealing with it, and hopefully it will be resolved.

all solved at 9.24am UK time.



 9:32 am on Jan 24, 2003 (gmt 0)

If I read it here, why would someone want to use Premium instead of Adwords?
The costs are way much higher (higher CTR but lower ROI), control and ease of use is less and you are not showing up on partner site's. AND if you manage your campaign right, you can propably get some of your Ad-words to "promote" to Premium spot.


 10:04 am on Jan 24, 2003 (gmt 0)

Wouldn't it be that people using Premium do not say anything because they are worried to attract the competition?



 11:46 am on Jan 24, 2003 (gmt 0)

Orange_XL - Don't forget you have to sign at least a five digit contract.

Jose - I don't care if someone knows that Premium Ad-Words is working great for me. It is not and I have a very high CTR. Also, you cannot get some of the keywords on Premium Ads because they are full. If you use the regular Ad-Words Select you can always get any keyword you want... assuming the Ad-Words Select is functioning properly. I do the same thing you do on my Ad-Copy and don't have a 30% CTR. That seems higher than my GOOGLE rep told me was ever achieved and my keywords are very, very targeted.


 12:03 pm on Jan 24, 2003 (gmt 0)


Did you know that 2nd Premium Position has about 3% CTR higher than the 1st Position even thought is less expensive?



 1:15 pm on Jan 24, 2003 (gmt 0)

Question that comes to mind (I have not researched any of this yet)is how do you track the hits from Google adwords as opposed to the SERPs for non paid placement in Google?




 2:16 pm on Jan 24, 2003 (gmt 0)

Just another experience here...

We tried Premium listings last year. With the CPM and CTR, we could not match the ROI of Overture, even after 5 KW phrase revisions.

[edited by: Travoli at 2:20 pm (utc) on Jan. 24, 2003]


 2:18 pm on Jan 24, 2003 (gmt 0)

I think the main problem is that people don't realize the premium listings are advertisements, whereas it's more obvious with Overture listings. That's may be why Overture or Adwords gives better ROI.


 2:39 pm on Jan 24, 2003 (gmt 0)

We use premium and adwords. Much higher volume (Clicks) with the premium listings then the adwords. ROI on adwords is better but not enough clicks. On the other hand with premium you need to commit to 6 months contract. With adwords no contract and you can always stop the campaign. Again I think the main reason will be the volume.


 3:14 pm on Jan 24, 2003 (gmt 0)

jose, yes, in a lot of cases.

Reflect, both have a click through script and I have a ROI script.

Travoli, yes, we had a lot better luck with PPC Engines.

SlyOldDog, I think it would be A LOT BETTER if the listings appeared as the #1 & #2 search engine listings and maybe just highlight them or make them bold. It could also say GOOGLE preferred listing. I think that would be huge.

powerstar, I think it is only three months but it is still a big contract regardless.


 3:26 pm on Jan 24, 2003 (gmt 0)

"Much higher volume (Clicks) with the premium listings then the adwords.."

No experience with the premium listings, but our adwords average around a 2% "buy" rate according to our online store stats. We don't get a lot of hits on some, but a few range as high as 9% for specific niche products that are hard to find.
We found that the less generic and more targeted adwords (same on Overture) are, the better ratio we get. The problem is that there are a limited number of those keywords to use.


 3:37 pm on Jan 24, 2003 (gmt 0)

The fact that you only pay for clicks on regular Ad-Words makes it a far better sell. and that it appears on AOL.


 6:17 pm on Jan 24, 2003 (gmt 0)

Just a quick thank you to morgana who has put the wheels in motion. If it all pans out I will let everybody know how the move from free rankings to free + adwords to free + premium works out.


 8:33 pm on Jan 24, 2003 (gmt 0)

Google Guy, I have a question -- why is it that the Premium ads aren't syndicated but the AdWords ads for each keyword are? You would think that if the Premium Ads are so much more expensive, require higher ad buy, bigger contracts, etc., that the advertisers would be screaming for the syndication and extra exposure, right?

Just a thought....

I think that the biggest benefit of AdWords over the Premium Campaign is the syndication over Google's network of partners.


 8:56 pm on Jan 24, 2003 (gmt 0)

If they syndicated the premium ads, it would proabably be difficult to maintain their high CPM's.

Traditionally CPM's for a network distribution are much lower than for a single site even when all sites in the network are of the same perceived quality.


 8:57 pm on Jan 24, 2003 (gmt 0)

in my opinion the reason that Premium listings are not syndicated, is that:

a lot of the partners decide to sell their OWN specific premium keywords.

Premium listings are bought on a CPM basis, and it would be impossible to ESTIMATE number of impressions on partner sites (could depend on a number of factors), whereas Googles own tool can give quite a good guideline as to number of impressions (based on past performance).



 12:10 am on Jan 25, 2003 (gmt 0)

(Google's current campaign minimum is $15,000 over three months.

That probably is why more people do not even try it........

Google should find some of it's best adwords clients and let them sample "premium" for the cost of adwords, but not at random. Goggle can inform the customer of his keywords that are not used in premiums and then the client can flag one for testing usage. In a short time the customer will soon know the ROI & CPC and will better be able to make a decision.


 5:00 am on Jan 25, 2003 (gmt 0)

>Just a quick thank you to morgana who has put the wheels in motion. If it all pans out I will let everybody know how the move from free rankings to free + adwords to free + premium works out.

NFFC, it only goes to show how much customer service counts for. I don't know how much you have to spend, but I assume it is over $5,000 per month if you are heading for premium.

Google as a whole needs to learn a very valuable lesson from this exercise and never forget it, PLC or not, a sale generating $60K+ per year can be made with a 4 line post and a nudge in the right direction;)

Nice job Kate:)


 10:09 am on Jan 25, 2003 (gmt 0)

Can we get some Official Clarification from GoogleGuy or GoogleGal about the minimum spend on Premium listings.

I am pretty sure its different for USA and UK.

Furthermore I am also confident that if the minimum was $15,000 for 3 months, but you ONLY had $10,000 to spend, that they world NOT turn you away.

My opinion is that an entry figure was set to discourage timewasters wishing to spend $50 , especially considering the admin time taken to get a camapign up and running.

At the end of the day, if Google have inventory and YOU are a serious advertiser, I am 100% sure they will NOT turn you down.


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