Pay per click advertising is big business online. The two biggest players are Google Adwords and Yahoo's Search Marketing (formerly known as Overture, and before that Goto.com). Not to be left behind, “Ask Jeeves" has burst onto the scene with its own “Sponsored Listing" program. See http://sponsoredlistings. ask.com/
Ask Jeeves has always shown sponsored ads on their search results pages, but they were pulled from Google. Now paid ads will be come primarily from Jeeves’ inventory (followed up by those from Google).
So what is a sponsored listing? It's basically a small text ad, consisting of a title, site description, URL and a keyword or phrase. You are only charged when someone clicks on your ad; not for impressions. It's very similar to Google's Adwords Program.
If you purchase sponsored listings your ad will not only appear on Ask Jeeves, but across their network of sites, which include: My Search, Teoma, Mamma, Info Space, Dogpile, Excite, CNet, Clear Channel, Motley Fool and a few others.
Sponsored advertising appears at the top of Ask Jeeves’ search results pages, with more ads placed at the bottom; after the “Natural" listings. Here's an example: say you go to their search page and you do a search for “marketing ebooks. " On the search results page you would see the top listings for that phrase. Placement and order of the paid ads is dependent on click thru rate and the maximum Cost Per Click (CPC). The CPC is the most you are willing to pay if someone clicks on your advertisement. Higher bids and more click thrus equal higher ad placement.
Ask Jeeves does include a “keyword pricing tool" that displays the cost per click advertisers need to bid in order to appear in the top 4 positions for any keyword or phrase. Maximum bid is five cents where there is no reserve price already set. Minimum budget is $15.00 monthly for every 50 listings in that campaign. You can set up multiple campaigns under one account and you can set a budget for each one.
Campaigns go live within 1 to 2 hours of setup unless you specify a specific start and run date, which is optional. If an end date is set your campaign will stop running on that date.
With real-time reporting, it's easy for you to keep an eye on your campaigns and their performance. Like all pay per click companies, Ask Jeeves has some very specific rules. No unacceptable adult content, no sites depicting graphic violence or defamatory, offensive material. Nothing that is illegal in the U. S.
Titles and descriptions must “accurately represent" the website that they link to. The keywords must also relate to the website content. This is a given for relevancy. Descriptions may contain up to 70 characters, with titles capping off at 25 characters. Listings may contain only one exclamation point with other style usage rules similar to those of Google's Adwords program.
Advertisers must include their domain name or company name in the title, description, or URL of the listing. If your listing contains a certain geographic location it must be included in your keyphrase (i. e. , “Cleveland homes for sale"). URL's cannot redirect to another website, which is bad news for those pushing affiliate programs and using third party links.
If you've been using pay per click advertising for any length of time, most of this is pretty standard fare with no new real surprises.
Should you advertise with Ask Jeeves? Only you can answer that. If you're already doing PPC advertising with Google and Yahoo, you'll need to decide if you want to extend your reach further, and also if you have the time to manage yet another pay per click program. Hey, if you're not sure, maybe you should “Ask Jeeves. "
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