One of the new features of Cloud Edition that got us the most excited was the inclusion of a set of powerful keyword research tools that turned SpeedPPC into not “just” a PPC Campaign Builder but a complete PPC Research platform.

It’s been said many times before but always bears repeating – Every successful PPC campaign starts with a well researched keyword/search term list. You won’t get anywhere without one and as most of you already know, finding (or not finding) that right mix of search terms will make or break your campaign.

One of our most insight tools is the URL Comparison Report. This report allows you to plug-in two urls – your url and a competitor’s or two competitor’s urls, and quickly generate a report that compares a number of useful metrics that provide at a glance insight into what your competitors are doing both PPC and SEO-wise, show you what your and your competitor’s traffic (again both PPC and SEO) is worth and point you in the right direction as to what you need to do to beat them at their own game.

Here’s an example.

Let’s say you sell Red Rubber Balls. You want to see how your PPC and SEO efforts are stacking up against your toughest competitor.

You open SpeedPPC Cloud Edition, click on the Research tab, select the URL Comparison Report, plug in your url and that of your top competitor, select server (Google, Bing) and number of keyword rows (10-10,000!)…

Click the Search button and VIOLA!

The URL Comparison Report immediately generates data that compares your rank to that of your competitor, the organic keywords you and your competitor are showing for, the estimated number of visitors these organic keywords are driving to your site, the value of that organic traffic (what it would cost you if you were paying for them), the adwords keywords you and your competitor are bidding on (with those keywords you are both bidding on highlighted), the amount of traffic these paid keywords are driving to your site and the cost. What this data does straight off is tell you just how successful (or how not so successful) your current SEO and PPC efforts are compared to those of your rival. If you are beating your competitor – good on you and keep up the good work. If not…well you are now armed with important actionable data that you can use to get to work on beating them!

Looking at the organic and paid keyword lists on a more granular level you will see next to each keyword that keyword’s current position (at the time the data was gathered), keyword position the last time data was gathered, search volume (number of queries per month), average cost of a click, the url this keyword is sending traffic to, the percentage of search traffic this keyword is driving, traffic cost percentage, level of competition, number of results and also trends over the past year. These metrics are provided for both your site and that of your competitor and are presenting in a side by side comparison for ease of use.

The benefits of this data are clearly evident. Is your competitor showing up for organic keywords that you should be showing up for but you are not? Better get your SEO team to work on that. Maybe you are showing up for the same organic keywords but your position is lower…maybe much lower – time to start working on ways to turn that around. In the meantime you may even take those relevant organic keywords your competitor is showing for that you are not and plug those into your paid keyword list.

Same with paid keywords: Is your competitor bidding on keywords you should be bidding on? Are they bidding higher? Do they have better ad position? What landing page are they sending that traffic to? Time then to possibly bid higher, work on your ad copy to make it more relevant, work on your site’s user experience to better engage your potential customers…etc. This report is just the starting point but a point that helps moves you in the right direction and provides a jump start on what you need to focus on and what you need to fix straight off. No guesswork involved. And done in the time-honoured time saving SpeedPPC way – at the click of a single button.

This report can (and should) lead you to further research. Let’s plug that top keyword that your competitor is showing for that you are either not showing for or are showing at a much lower position into a browser. What do their ads look like? Where on their website are they taking you? Just how much better are their ads than yours? How much better is their website than yours? Be honest!

Armed with all this data you can start crafting even better PPC campaigns in SpeedPPC – campaigns that specifically target those keywords you are not showing up for but should be. You can use token insertion to make sure these important keywords appear in your ad headlines and/or your body copy and you can make sure by using our various dynamic landing page methods that these keywords also appear in your landing pages. This increases relevancy and better engages your traffic resulting in higher click through rates, lower bounce rates and with any luck at all, better conversions which also leads to higher quality scores and lower clicks costs.

You cannot get much more win-win than that.