One of the better known realities of the e-commerce world is that we strive to get ahead of our competitors, but we don’t always know how to do it.  Fortunately, it is very possible to scope out and get a leg ahead of our competitors by finding out and executing the specific ad campaigns and platforms that are working for them.  The lesser known reality is that this process is actually quite simple.

We’d like you to meet MixRank, a tool that many e-commerce retailers may find quite useful and insightful.  We had a chance to sit down with MixRank’s Marketing Manager, Jana Fung.  Jana has managed successful demand generation programs for over 5 years.  She is optimistic about the growth of online advertising and has a passion for helping online marketers with their campaigns.  Here’s our interview:

Describe MixRank in 60 words or less.

Jana: MixRank is a competitive intelligence tool for contextual and display ads.  Our intelligent spiders crawl over 100,000 publishers, automatically identifying the best performing ad copy, traffic sources, and landing pages within any industry.

What are the benefits of MixRank to an e-commerce retailer?

Jana: We have several e-commerce retailers who utilize our data in many ways.  Here’s some of the feedback we’ve received about MixRank’s competitive data:

  • Saves time and money testing various traffic sources and ad creative
  • Increases productivity to rapidly scale campaigns
  • Cuts unprofitable ad spend
  • Reduces research time for link-building

 

Here are just a few of the interesting ways our customers have used MixRank’s intelligent data.  By understanding a competitors’ reach, strategies and tactics, online merchants have been able to:

 

  • Benchmark the competition
  • Improve reach and ROI
  • Evaluate estimated reach and demographics of websites
  • Uncover any industry’s most profitable traffic sources
  • Quickly build links on highly relevant websites with desired reach
  • Assess active advertisers, their ads and their landing pages
  • Quickly identify ad formats and messaging that reach your target market
  • Survey competing ad copy and brand messages
  • Develop and execute winning ad creative
  • View all landing pages associated with the ads, including split tests
  • Analyze elements of the top performing landing pages of your competitors
  • Identify similar advertisers who market to the same audience
  • Arm your designers and campaign managers with the most comprehensive online ad database

 

How can MixRank help a website’s SEO efforts?

Jana: For SEO, many of our users applaud MixRank’s traffic sources for rapid link-building and keyword research.  Because advertisers are paying for every click from the sites in MixRank’s database, this means that:

      1. These sites are highly relevant to the advertiser’s niche and
      2. The traffic these sites send converts well enough that it’s worth paying for

As it turns out, sites running AdSense ads are excellent targets for link-building and online retailers can acquire this high quality traffic for free by simply contacting the webmasters for link-building directly.

These sites are also extremely helpful for researching what search terms they rank for.  With keyword tools, advertisers can easily uncover which keywords convert well within a particular market.

How can MixRank complement my Google Adwords account?

Jana: The easiest way to use MixRank to complement your Google AdWords account is to build placement-targeted campaigns on the Google Display Network.  Simply conduct a keyword search to find a similar ad to yours.  Click on that ad and you can instantly export all of its traffic sources, which you can then import to your AdWords account.

With placement-targeted campaigns, you don’t have to worry about keywords, relevance or other targeting options.  MixRank offers the competition’s profitable traffic sources, and you can simply target them directly to snag your competitors’ traffic.

What does MixRank have in store for the future?

Jana: We’re working on a lot of really interesting things, but most of that will remain confidential until we’re ready to announce them publicly.  In the immediate future, here’s a sneak peek at what we’re releasing:

  • Email Alerts: Our new email alerts will allow advertisers to monitor their competitors’ campaign changes with minimal effort. Just like setting up a Google Alert to monitor web mentions for competitors, retailers will be able to do the same with competitor ad campaigns within MixRank.
  • More Data from More Networks: We’re expanding our data set to include even more networks. Look forward to more data across various networks, giving users a bigger picture understanding of the competition’s advertising strategies.
  • Sophisticated Analytics: Our learning algorithms will be able to automatically recommend profitable ways to rapidly scale campaigns based on the competitive landscape.  This will significantly increase efficiencies and give advertisers a powerful edge to directly compete with their competitors’ existing campaigns.

 

How can an e-commerce merchant get started with MixRank?

Jana: For CPC Strategy fans, we have a special offer to try MixRank Professional completely free for an entire month.  Grab the offer here.

MixRank offers different levels of competitive analytics, ranging from our free solution to custom reporting, depending on how advanced you want to get.  Connect with me on Twitter for a demo, advice, or simply just to say hello!

If you’re a MixRank fan or just want to say hi, Jana’s interested in connecting with you. Follow her on Twitter @jana_fung

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