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0 Conversion & $10,000 spent on Adwords

Help with adwords conversions on Travel site



10:36 pm on Apr 6, 2007 (gmt 0)

5+ Year Member

Let me start by saying I have run many adwords campaigns, many as high as $500K a month. But NEVER have a run into something like the travel package industry. I have been contracted by a company &
we have started a great PPC campaign the keywords are all exact match, they are targeted , we have 2-3 version of landing pages, great prices but no conversions : 0. We have spent 10K and 0, I dont get it. Not to mention that the owners are bretahing down my neck for results. I dont know what to do. Can someone help! Please , we are a company specializing in Mexico Travel packages, and from using & competetive research sites, I know Im using the same keywords and even more targeted ones, clicks and traffic not the problem. Conversions are! Please help!

[edited by: skibum at 3:45 am (utc) on April 7, 2007]
[edit reason] removed specifics [/edit]


12:55 am on Apr 10, 2007 (gmt 0)

Are the travel packages really cheaper then going straight to the source?

I hate to say it but I always buy direct from the hotel and always find a fare lowest direct from the airline. If the deal is not a good one, just looking like a bargain can only get you so far.


2:35 am on Apr 10, 2007 (gmt 0)

5+ Year Member

Wow! So much info thanks everyone! Well Im happy to say we got 5 conversion today, which eased things up @ the office! hahah!

But in repsonse to all of the quality feedback, suggestions and questions thanks!

1) Bidding on hotel names becuz we also sell just hotel, or just air. Which I failed to mention in the first post..

2) I never promised anything to the owners, but I mean they figuire that after 12K now they should have seen something. (which they did now)

3) I agree about adding live chat, I think we will

4) I have tested from SERPS ad to compeltion, under various KW and Landing pages

5) in response to they dont want it, or is it a good deal really! Well theres atleast 25 multiple million dollar sites spending 10-15K per day in this "niche" market, and their all selling! So in regards to demand! its there, now we just have to place it infromt of the right customers.

6) we will be using the google optimizer instead of egg, any suggestions or advise rgarding the multi variate testing?

Now heres the next problem! today was the first day we started with Yahoo SM, and today is the first day we started recieving about 30 calls!

was it the leads from google that were in the pipeline or the clicks from Yahoo?

the operators didnt ask, they will now but Im trying to decipher this! any help!

thanks for all of your help

much appreciated


2:43 am on Apr 10, 2007 (gmt 0)

WebmasterWorld Senior Member 10+ Year Member

Couple things here.

1. You NEED testimonials at all costs for this. I travel a lot and I simply do not trust "packages". I bought a package for a Pebble Beach Golf deal, which isn't cheap and I had to talk to a guy from there like 5 times and email back and forth before I bought. You just have the odd feeling that yu are going to purchase and never receive anything OR receive a totally different trip than promised. Testimonials create at least some trust that is required.

2. As mentioned, if you are in the content network for something like this you are DONE.


3:27 am on Apr 10, 2007 (gmt 0)

5+ Year Member

thanks again mfishy-

I have opten out of content and search network for that matter

and yes, regarding testimonials I strongly agree, but we have a what do you call, conundrum or whatever! 0 conversions literally mean 0 customers, this is a brand spanking new company. In which PPC is the ONLY form of incoming traffic , period. So that explains the presure, evereything is under a microscope since this is it! Google and Yahoo are the sole avenues of marketing. Im really pushing for diversification into 3rd party emails from larger more reputable travel providers, giving us a bit of credibility!

anyhow thanks again!

any ideas on the Yahoo Google thing?


3:37 am on Apr 10, 2007 (gmt 0)

WebmasterWorld Administrator 10+ Year Member

Here's a couple of random thoughts:

1) Are your competitors running their campaings on a loss leader type set up? That is they know they are losing money now, but in the long run they might make their money back from return visitors and bookings.

2) I deal in competitive areas ( in this case not travel) and it seems to me that organic rankings with a good domain name do better that genericnamesite.com in PPC campaigns.


3:45 am on Apr 10, 2007 (gmt 0)

WebmasterWorld Senior Member 10+ Year Member

You should definetly configure the landing pages (actually, the whole site) to show a unique phone number based on the referring source. The call center guys shouldn't have to worry (and probably can't be made to either) about that.

Secondly - who goes to Mexico from the US? Is it medical tourism, retired tourists, university students etc? If you can focus in on one niche, you'll get a better conversion rate.


4:10 pm on Apr 10, 2007 (gmt 0)

10+ Year Member

I am a publisher with a Mexico related niche site, and I am running Adsense on these pages. There's one thing about the Mexico pages - they attract attention, but people simply do not click the ads. At first I suspected bad ad copy, but the ads are from some top advertisers (who have well performing ads in other niches), so I think it may simply be the destination. It seems to be difficult, and looking at the messages in this thread seems to confirm this somehow.


4:45 pm on Apr 10, 2007 (gmt 0)

10+ Year Member

Hey guys,
I am a publisher and an adword user, but here is my feedback to you.

Adword users should really think about the landing pages, there are so many poor landing pages out there.

Poor landing pages will not make conversions.

I agree, did you try the landing page optimiser tool from Google?

here's a useful discussion about it:



8:21 am on Apr 11, 2007 (gmt 0)

10+ Year Member

any ideas on the Yahoo Google thing?

The trick is usually done by using different phone extensions (or different numbers as edit_g posted), promotional or coupon codes and similar.


5:52 pm on Apr 11, 2007 (gmt 0)

10+ Year Member

First thing that come to my mind is that you might have targeted on keywords which are too broad. In that way you might get a lot of traffic but no sales. Instead, you should target on niche keywords, add city or country names on top of hotel names and vacation package names. I believe with highly targeted traffic you sales will go up.

IT Pro Web Team

11:32 pm on Apr 11, 2007 (gmt 0)

5+ Year Member

Are you targeting the long tail in your campaign? Evidence shows that most conversions (especially when it comes to green ROI) happen in the long tail...so if you're targeting keywords like "Cancun vacation" or "Hilton Cancun" you will not necessarily see the conversion you would get for something in the long tail...along the lines of "Hilton [area of Cancun] June 28" or "Hilton [area of Cancun] king size bed with view."

I can't say much for conversions in the online travel industry...having worked for an established SEM firm previously, we considered it "100% saturated" and our *own* ROI was at stake trying to carve any kind of niche in it.

Curious to know if there's a method to the madness though: In any given saturated market (which, theoretically they will all become without some kind of regulation), is there an alorithm for success?


4:22 pm on Apr 13, 2007 (gmt 0)

10+ Year Member

I've seen making Live Chat more obvious on a site really increase conversions. Adding it would definitely be an idea worth testing for any advertiser and especially those selling anything on which potential buyers may desire additional information.

Volusion is offering free Live Chat software for anyone who requests it. The first operator is free; additional are under $30 which is far less than LiveChat. Both Volusion as an e-commerce solution and their chat service were selected as the best (I believe it was last year) in their niche.


9:52 pm on Apr 13, 2007 (gmt 0)

WebmasterWorld Senior Member 10+ Year Member

and yes, regarding testimonials I strongly agree, but we have a what do you call, conundrum or whatever! 0 conversions literally mean 0 customers, this is a brand spanking new company.

Well, since you are already going through money like water anyhow, what about just finding away to give away a few packages and make sure these folks have the time of their lives and are willing to have their pics posted on the site and say a thing or two?

Or, you could....ahhh foreget it :)


2:29 am on Apr 19, 2007 (gmt 0)

5+ Year Member

thanks mfishy, great Idea . Appreciate it.
This 44 message thread spans 2 pages: 44

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