No offense, but when it comes to the vast majority of retailers and e-tailers, most people just aren’t moved by seeing the brand name in a PPC Ad. It never helps. And I’ve seen the tests.


What I mean by that is this: as much as you may love, say Target or Macy’s or Walmart, when you’re searching for a specific item online, say, blu-ray players, the fact that Kmart or Best Buy or whoever is selling them is neither a deal maker or deal breaker.


Sure, I’d probably prefer doing business with a known brand than “Crazy Al’s Electrical Funhouse,” but I’m first and foremost interested in blu-ray players and not the brand of the potential retailer stocking them.


And yet, I can’t tell you how many PPC Ads for products like blu-ray players or cookware or bedroom furniture that end up putting more emphasis on the retailer’s brand than on the quality of the items themselves. Here’s a perfect and recent example:


PPC Ad Tips

So the searcher is looking for benches. What would you most feature in the headline: benches or the retailer’s brand name? Well, for the winning ad, which boosted CTR by 33%, it was benches and the quality of benches for sale. And for the losing ad, it was the retailer’s brand name.


And what makes this instructive is that it is both typical client/brand behavior and highly representative of normal testing results. Retail brands want to emphasize their brand, while searcher just don’t respond to that when it comes to PPC Ads.


In other words, they’re just not that into you — they’re into whatever shopping task that drove them to search for benches in the first place. So take a tip from the Boosters: focus more on their buying task and less on your brand, and your CTR rates will improve.