Some of you may know I was invited out to San Francisco to visit Google’s Headquarters in Mountain View or Silicon Valley as some of you will know it. For an AdWords enthusiast like me, Google Plex is an amazing place, a holy grail for an AdWords expert. So what did I find?
Principally it’s a marketing showcase for the company with all the bells and whistles you’d expect from Google. The coloured umbrellas, Google bikes, pool tables, first private manned rocket into space and everything else you imagined is there. But I wanted to delve behind the scenes a little more and take the opportunity to find out a little more about what truly goes on behind closed doors at Google. What is really behind the laid back ethos? A little arm twisting later and once they got to know me (they had no choice), the doors opened.
What did I find? The scale of the site is difficult to take in. It’s the size of a very large business park where every building is another Google office with large parks and Golf courses surrounding it. There is a fitness trail that runs between the campuses and drive in any direction and it’s just Google as far as the eye can see, it only stops when you hit US Highway 101 or you hit a trailer park called Santiago Villa. Personally I suspect these homeowners were holding out for Google needing to expand. The whole site had a very university feel to it, which is understandable considering Stanford is only a stone’s throw away across the Highway.
Inside I found very smart, hard working individuals all working for a common cause. Many were motivated by the chance to dazzle Sergey and Page with their great ideas or just in awe of working for Google. However mostly I sensed there was a definite “youth culture”, most were below 30 and they had an air of invincibility and doggedness that their way (or the Google way) of doing things is the only way! Raise issues about AdWords costs, competition and the ever changing platform which seems to change for changes sake and the conversation gets in-depth very fast. These individuals clearly aren’t the usual bunch I deal with in Dublin (European HQ) who shy away from such discussions, but work at another level willing to debate the pros and cons for their beloved product.
It would be unfair to document off the record conversations, but the general thoughts expressed during my San Francisco tour were that many don’t fully understand the platform they are using. AdWords is a highly competent product capable for delivering prospect to a site at the key decision making point, but if the site owner fails to deliver an experience, a product or service that in the users/customers view meets their needs then why should that be Google’s fault? It was a fair point and one that I have seen firsthand with some of my more…short sighted clients. If you’re unable to grab people’s attention, get them to sit bolt upright and reach for their credit card and most importantly buy from you, why is it Google’s fault? It doesn’t make any difference if it’s SEO or AdWords; it’s not the guys at Mountain views fault.
So this begs the question, who is at fault?
I had to agree with a point that one of the guys brought up. There are too many sites out there unable to change. The excuses why people cannot change anything on their websites range from it costs too much to we don’t have the time and everything in between. The point here is that if your shop front does not attract and convert users into customers then you will never have the time or money to improve anything and eventually you will not have a business to advertise! It’s as if the life blood of the business is slowly being sucked from them.
It’s easy to spot the problem as well
1. Traffic is getting more expensive, sales are slow and throwing money at the problem doesn’t seem to help.
2. You seem to be selling the same product as everyone else, the competition is cheaper and your AdWords costs are
rising.You’ll really notice it especially this month as people aren’t spending for Christmas yet so it’s going to be tough.
But here’s the kicker. As soon as you solve the USP problem, EVERYTHING in your life starts to turn around. It could be a small problem, but it’s one you haven’t solved yet.
You’re stuck unwilling to seeking assistance or don’t believe it can be solved? It’s time to ask for help.
We can drive quality traffic to your site and help you improve your USP so traffic actually converts but you have to be open to some constructive criticism to make this work.
Isn’t it time you called us?