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Using LookSmart

Need advice on using :LookSmart

     
7:22 pm on May 27, 2003 (gmt 0)

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Looking for any information/advice on using LookSmart for a small business. I am currently using Google & Overture, but (of course) need to drive even more traffic. So I'm thinking of LookSmart. They have a pretty attractive package - $29 start-up and flat rate ppc ($0.15). Is it too good to be true?
12:12 pm on May 28, 2003 (gmt 0)

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Hi cmphilipps,

When LookSmart moved to become a ppc engine, I (and many people) were pretty upset.

But since then, LookSmart and I have kissed and made up. They now allow you to put a tracking url into their system so you can track where the traffic is coming from and what phrases that traffic is searching for.

And in this day and age, $0.15 is almost always a great deal.

I would give it a try if I were you.

12:29 pm on May 28, 2003 (gmt 0)

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And in this day and age, $0.15 is almost always a great deal.

So we should probably expect a price hike soon then. Nothing like a service being a good deal to encourage the owners to up the price.

12:39 pm on May 28, 2003 (gmt 0)

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That's a good point. I wouldn't be surprised at all to see a price hike. Overture's average cost right now is $0.35. So, they probably feel they have a lot of room to move.
4:09 pm on June 25, 2003 (gmt 0)

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Well it will be interesting to see the changes afoot at Looksmart. They are overhauling their current Small Business Listings to incorporate more of the "Large Budget" account features. I'm scheduled to have an appointment with them this week to discuss the new transition and for them to try to sell me on the new benefits of their new products. Should be interesting. My guess is there is a price hike coming our way. I'll keep ya'll posted.
4:19 pm on June 25, 2003 (gmt 0)

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LS is a must have for any comprehensive approach. Like other PPC engines, you simply need to carefully select your keywords. Just like with Adwords, you can't ignore the AOL property, and with O, the Y! property, with LS it is the MSN property. Looking at our commerce sites, prior to this post, our clients are doing on average between 4-5% of their sales via LS. As far as the price increase is concerned, that will come with time. LS is a relatively new entrant into the PPC arena. Remember to use source code to track your ROI if you are concerned. Otherwise, it is a no-brainer.
4:32 pm on June 25, 2003 (gmt 0)

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You should also consider FindWhat, depending on what market you are targeting - aside from the big two, they have a broader reach than LookSmart (and a larger advertiser base than LS thanks to their merger with Espotting).

In addition, if you are selling in Europe, the FindWhat / Espotting merger can't be ignored since they have currently more languages available to sell in than Overture, 2nd only to Google.

Ditto the bit about tracking urls to monitor ROI, though I would say, use them at all times and not just if you are 'concerned' because a well blended marketing mix will generally provide postive ROI, but unless you have a large budget allocation to PPC, it doesn't make sense to leverage a provider that, through tracking, proves less valuable than others.

Try to figure out a desirable CPA or CPO for your products a priori to the marketing campaign - then let it fly. :) Good luck, & let us know how it goes.

(btw, FindWhat's minimum is .10 cents I believe...as is Lycos Insite, so if LS looks like a 'steal' than FindWhat, by comparison, must seem "free")

8:57 pm on June 26, 2003 (gmt 0)

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Re prior comment <LS is a must have for any comprehensive approach. Like other PPC engines, you simply need to carefully select your keywords. Just like with Adwords, you can't ignore the AOL property, and with O, the Y! property, with LS it is the MSN property.<

Agree, LS is a big help with MSN search which last I looked was the number 3 search engine used by people on the Internet after Yahoo and Google. And it is not that expensive compared to OV and Google. But I would not look for much in the way of click throughs and return, other than from MSN.

9:01 pm on June 26, 2003 (gmt 0)

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Um, WebStat - according to Jupiter Research, MSN is #1 :)

My log files tell a different story, of course, but there you have it: the 'truth' about statistics.

Either way, for their reach, MSN is a must: keep in mind, you can 'go direct' if you are big enough, and LookSmart has a deal with Inktomi, so you'll get in there if you are in on the Ink XML feed, though I don't know the criteria for the cross over.

In addition, LookSmart participates in the Commission Junction affiliate program - so if you are paying CJ on a per acquisition basis or what not, I would continue doing that, unless paying them direct on a CPC would be cheaper.

A caveat on that last approach, though - they've been known to double dip if you get my drift. Use an ROI tool, keep your eyes open, and watch your logs as you spend your money (anywhere on CPC).

9:04 pm on June 26, 2003 (gmt 0)

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So we should probably expect a price hike soon then. Nothing like a service being a good deal to encourage the owners to up the price.

Looks like it is some sort of hybrid system. For those advertisers that get over 5,000 clicks a month they will go to a higher CPC after surpassing 5,000 clicks. The first 5,000 are at a fixed .15 cents.

 

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