What happened when a stuffed toy wholesaler gave up Google ads for lent
Last year Best Years made the decision to give up Google ads for Lent
We did this because like many other businesses we had ended up spending a lot of money on Google ads without actually knowing whether it was a good investment.
When we take our crochet and knitted toys to a trade show it is easy to judge afterwards whether the £000s investment has been paid back but with Google ads its a bit more difficult. Yes you can see that traffic is arriving at your website, but is it profitable? Your ads are supposed to be specifically targeted but despite this we seemed to be getting a lot of traffic from the USA, a country where we cannot sell our toys
We are a fairtrade wholesaler and not an expert in google advertising so over the years we have hired a couple of agencies to manage our Google ads with very little effect. So finally we took a deep breath and cancelled the ads.
The most immediate effect was a devestating and almost instant halving of our website traffic. As a stuffed toy wholesaler we gain many customers via our website and we were very tempted to re-instate the google ads immediately. However we stuck it out and now a year later things are very different.
We have spent the year on a very steep learning curve. We have attended training courses by Business Link and the British Library in order to understand what customers and search engines require from a website. As we are not buying in traffic we have had to find a way to pull relevant traffic in to us through key words etc. We have also set Best Years up on Twitter and Facebook which has been fab as it allows 2 way digital communication. We are passionate about our Pebble crochet toys so we have also been involved with non digital activity to increase the visibility of Pebble.
And one year later we now have the same amount of traffic to our website as we had in Jan 2010 with the one major improvement that very little of it is from the USA
We spend a lot more time on our website, writing blogs on subjects that we, as wholesale kids market, find interesting but this has resulted in website visitors who are interested in what we do.
So the learning is that you can exist without Google ads but what you gain in money you lose in time! We are quite happy with this but if you are considering anything similar you should take it in to account
Our next step is to once again hire an expert. From Feb 2011 we have been working with Claire Jarrett to increase the visibility of our website. This is a lot cheaper than Google ads and you get to have a conversation about whether things are or are not working which is a definite bonus!
We will let you know how we get on but if you wish to contact Claire her email is firstname.lastname@example.org
|home | about us | quality promise | terms and conditions | news | contact us | links|