To consumer advocates, payday loans have become synonymous with predatory lending. The small short-term loans often come with astronomical interest rates that can pull consumers who are trying to get by from paycheck to paycheck into a deepening hole of debt. Just this week, the FTC fined a payday lending group $1.3 billion for deceptive loan practices. Industry watchdog groups have been advocating for more regulation and pressing for change, and in May, Google announced it would start to ban payday and high-interest loan ads. The ban started rolling out the week of July 20. There were estimates the move could cost Google millions in lost ad revenue. Yet, more than two months later, it appears the ban is likely having little to no impact on Google’s bottom line. as ads continue to fill the available slots on desktop and mobile. Why? Because it’s not an actual ban, and the advertisers quickly figured out how to change their messaging to meet Google’s policies. In a … [Read more...] about Why are payday loan ads still showing on Google after the ban?
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It’s something of a “perfect storm” for the embattled yellow pages companies right now. Not only has the usage of print yellow pages books declined in recent years, but they’re also facing heavy competition in the online space from each other in addition to other local business directory providers and the big search engines. With consumers using YP printed books less, they’re now facing irritation from the environmentally-conscious throughout the country where people no longer see a reason for having big, paper-heavy books dropped on their porches. Economic pressures are hitting many businesses, and a lot of them have slashed some advertising spending, adding to revenue pressures at YP companies. And to add insult to injury, Wall Street has abruptly lost its love for the venerable old companies in the last year, causing their stock prices to fall through the floor — Idearc Media got delisted from the NYSE a few weeks back, and R.H. Donnelley appears … [Read more...] about What Could Save The Yellow Pages? 10 Ideas
Business building is about relationship building. In order to get and keep customers, you must be able to build some kind of relationship with them. In my last post, I talked about how building relationships online is essential to your long-term business strategy. After all, you want to be different than the 100's or 1000's of others all selling the same product or service. Once you open up the door to relationships with your customers, you create a comfort level and familiarity that continues to bring people back. So, what is it that people want? How does that translate into what they need? And, how the heck does that get applied to your online business? Let's look at some generalities of what people want and what you can do to meet their needs. People want security; they need you to give them confidence. It's easy to trust a brick and mortar store where you see real people. Even if you're being checked out by some overly-pierced and tattooed 16 year-old kid, you don't have to … [Read more...] about The Dirty Little Secret of Conversions, Part 2: Understand Your Customer’s Wants
As marketers, we invest a lot of our time and energy into SEO. Considering that Google receives over 66,000 searches every second, we’d be stupid not to. But when it comes down to it, Google and other search engines are just one of the many ways you can drive traffic to your website. In fact, depending on your target audience and competition, Google may not even be your best traffic source. Take Upworthy, for example. This site, which has a reputation for sharing feel-good viral videos, gets almost 43% of their traffic from social and less than 19% from search. Groups of consumers all use the web differently. Some like to get their content from friends or influencers on social. A few depend on their trusted newsletters to tell them what content they need to read. Others use an alternative search engine like YouTube or even Facebook. To prove that you don’t need Google to drive traffic to your website, here are six alternatives that can help boost your visits. … [Read more...] about SEO Isn’t the Only Way to Drive Traffic. Here Are 6 Alternative Strategies.
Google makes several updates to its search engine ranking algorithm every day.Some of Google’s updates come and go, without any real notice.Other updates go live, only to be rolled back several weeks later.And some, become infamous.Caffeine. Penguin. Panda.Mention these updates to any SEO and their expression will tell you how badly their websites (or their clients’ websites) were affected.Another of Google’s famous updates didn’t quite have the same cute name associated with it.It’s merely known as the “payday loan” update.In 2013, Google rolled out their payday loan update in a bid to improve the payday loan SERPs that were being crammed full of websites that had gamed the system through spammy SEO tactics.In the five years since that Google update, the payday loan industry has been a constant battle of websites that try to outsmart Google versus those that play the long game – and hope that doing things “the right way” will … [Read more...] about Hit by the Medic Update? Here’s How to Recover (A Practical Case Study)