Google PPA: Beta Testing At Its Best

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I mentioned earlier that we were part of Google’s Pay Per Action beta test, and that things were off to a slow start. That continued to be the story – up until yesterday.

First, a little background. Discussion about the PPA program was on all the major search engine forums, including Search Engine Watch. Member abbottsys and I posted there that we weren’t getting any impressions on our text link ad formats. Barry from Search Engine Roundtable jumped in and said he’d use the text link ads.

Long story short, I had an ad set up for Search Marketing Standard Magazine – a great fit for SE Roundtable’s audience. Problem was, the text link didn’t appear to be available for publishers – Barry could only find our regular Adwords-type text ads, not the links. He got the Google PPA beta team involved, and it turned out there was a bug in the system that prevented the text link ads from being approved – basically, they were stuck in an editorial purgatory. Google fixed the problem late last week.

Yesterday, Barry posted an example of the PPA text link format on SE Roundtable. I knew his site had a lot of visitors, but wow. Overnight, SE Roundtable has leapfrogged to the top of the heap as our #1 referrer for the PPA program.

I have to thank Barry, along with Rob Kniaz from Google, for persisting and figuring out why the text link ads weren’t showing up. This is what a beta test is all about – finding holes and patching them. More importantly, it’s about advertisers, publishers, and Google all working together to find and fix the problems. When that happens, everybody wins. This is what I love about search engine marketing – the sense of community and willingness to share and work together. It makes it fun to come to work every day!

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  1. Wow, just posted a new PPA post and had commented that none of my text link ads were showing up. SHould have read this about 15 minutes earlier:-)

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