SOURCE: WatchMouse

March 12, 2008 12:16 ET

WatchMouse Urges AdWords Advertisers to Act Swiftly to Avoid Costly Mistakes

UTRECHT, THE NETHERLANDS--(Marketwire - March 12, 2008) - Research has long confirmed that slow websites drive away potential customers. As Google announces changes to the way they score their immensely popular AdWords, it also appears that sites with slow landing pages create issues for online advertising.

Google will soon incorporate landing page load time (the amount of time it takes for a page to show after a user clicks an ad) as an additional factor in determining a site's 'quality score.' Google says they are making this change as "users value ads that bring them to the information they want as efficiently as possible." Experts warn that failure to demonstrate a fast load time will result in your keywords getting a lower quality score and higher minimum bids.

A post by Google on the WebMasterWorld blog indicates that the new scoring method will be announced shortly, "now that the (landing) page load time initiative has been mentioned in this and other public forums, the Inside AdWords blog post is likely to be posted sooner rather than later -- perhaps as early as this week."

The impact of the new AdWords scoring method will be financial. WatchMouse CTO, Mark Pors, advised, "When Google introduces the new scoring method, AdWords with slow landing pages will cost more. Slow landing pages will be listed below their faster competitors, thus increasing the cost-per-click (CPC) to get a higher position, or substantially lowering the number of customers visiting the site, as studies show that the top few AdWords obtain the vast majority of the traffic volume." Pors suggested, "Businesses should do everything possible to prevent a low Google 'quality score' and do so as soon as possible, as the AdWords system will only re-evaluate landing pages on a monthly basis."

Measuring website performance, however, is not a straightforward exercise, as many factors influence it. Pors urges Google AdWords customers to "avoid costly mistakes and have independent website monitoring set up to continuously measure load time from different locations worldwide. Once a business has accurate statistics, it can make necessary changes well in advance of Google's new 'Quality Score' launch date, and keep a close eye on it after that."

About WatchMouse

Accurate and independent monitoring of website performance enables businesses to address load time and many other potential user experience issues which might not be apparent when conducting in-house or single point monitoring. WatchMouse's global infrastructure provides its customers with peace of mind that their site has been tested from the user's perspective, and external to the organization. As industry leaders in website performance monitoring, WatchMouse offers customers a web-based service with features such as SMS/email alerting and extensive reporting. Many of the world's lead brands depend on WatchMouse to monitor their sites, providing independent confirmation of both in-house and suppliers' website performance.

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