As a PPC manager for several clients I spend a vast majority of my time in AdWords, Excel and the AdWords Editor. Google gets the lion’s share of searches so they also get the lion’s share of my attention and my clients’ budgets. The secondary options like Facebook, LinkedIn, Twitter and Bing Ads get included in many efforts as well because there is a decent amount of volume in certain verticals from those sources. But what about those “other” PPC Options like Miva, Ask.com or Business.com? Are they worth it? I’ve recently been looking into Business.com and thought I would share what I’ve found.
What Does Business.com Offer
From their own media kit, here is what Business.com claims they offer:
Business.com is the only B2B online destination where millions of business decision makers go every month ACTIVELY looking to make a purchase. Facilitating billions of dollars of business purchases, Business.com connects over 10,000 advertisers with this high quality audience of motivated buyers.
Not bad I would say, but can they back it up?
Again, pulling from the media kit, Business.com says they have an audience that is 112% more likely to have made a B2B purchase in the last six months and their users are 86% more likely to be in senior management. Interesting stats simply because I still don’t quite understand who the heck is even going to Business.com to perform searches (and while they have a “premium partner network” I wasn’t able to determine who any of those partners actually were). They also cite their Compete numbers to show 60 million site visitors (I’m assuming that is a monthly figure) which is 6X more than the 10 million visitors that Forbes site receives. Interesting, but on a qualitative level, how does it stack up?
What Do Results Look Like?
So I went to Business.com and did a search for “salt lake internet marketing agency” since that’s where I live and what I do. Here is what I got:
So I get a web development company (who also does internet marketing), a hotel-specific internet marketing company and an ad agency as the top 3 sponsored results. Not exactly inspiring confidence, but I scanned down and saw a link to Marketing Consulting Companies in Salt Lake City and clicked there. Here is what I got:
I don’t recognize any companies on the list and it appears that these sponsored links are actually being served by Google AdWords. Again, the credibility of the results is somewhat suspect and they are using AdWords to back fill their ad inventory. Makes me wonder why I should even bother managing a separate account through them if I could just target them in AdWords. However, I decided to give them a second chance and instead used the navigation to look for PPC marketing agencies. If anyone is putting forth the effort, it should be PPC guys right?
Here you’ll see that I’m presented with the option of going to a partner site (PassionPPC), comparing price quotes for SEO Services (why is that even an option on this page) or there are more AdWords back fill ads.
Without seeing more detailed case studies or more transparent metrics I would have a hard time selling this to any of my current clients as a worthwhile use of resources.