Your Search Advisor is a pay-per-click agency that has built and scaled its business using Unbounce landing pages. They have established a reputation for providing clients with a spectacular return on investment by increasing lead generation by as much as 400% without increasing their ad spend.
Launched in 2007 in Richmond, Virginia, Your Search Advisor was initially a one-man operation. Founder Andrew Miller did a little bit of everything: SEO, PPC, website building – whatever was necessary to please his clients. In 2010, determined to “do one thing and do it well,” as he puts it, Andrew pivoted to focus solely on PPC.
Today the agency’s four analysts and one designer serve around 25 clients of various sizes, including a local homebuilder, a dentist and an e-commerce retailer. Andrew says he looks for the kind of clients who understand the value of PPC and that outsourcing can be more cost effective than trying to achieve the same results in-house.
Converting clients to landing pages
In their ongoing mission to improve their clients’ ROI, Andrew and his team zeroed in on the conversion component of PPC campaigns:
“We were always looking for ways to push past the normal conversion rates [of a website]. We’d hit a plateau – we can drive more traffic and we can get more leads but we weren’t really bursting through that ceiling.”
In other words, they were meeting the brief but knew they could do more.
In 2011 Andrew and his team discovered Unbounce and with it, the power of landing page optimization. As Andrew explains, “anyone can buy PPC traffic.” What differentiates YSA from their competitors is a razor-sharp focus on ROI. Instead of focusing solely on ad spend, the agency now controls the whole conversion experience for their clients. Taking advantage of what Andrew calls the “compounding effect” of landing pages – the ability to continually optimize and improve ROI – the YSA team started building and testing targeted landing pages with Unbounce.
Their first landing page client was a local homebuilder. They’d been sending PPC traffic to their website and converting at about 5%. The first landing pages they built for the client converted almost identically to their website. Then they started optimizing:
“We started testing everything from images to backgrounds, slideshows, videos, copy, headline placement, form placement, button placement. At first we just played around with what we thought would work. And we started slowly seeing improvements. Every landing page iteration we tested would get incrementally better.”
Soon, they were able to increase the client’s conversions from 5% to 8%, which translated to earning 50% more leads with the same ad spend. “That was a big win!” Andrew says. It turned out to be the first of many:
“We were able to test our way all the way up to 20-22% conversion rates. Without driving any more traffic, the client’s getting four times the leads that he was getting prior.”
Scaling the agency with Unbounce
Using Unbounce hasn’t just been a boon for customers; it’s helped Your Search Advisor grow. Andrew says that Unbounce is easy to pick up and master for new team members:
“Anybody that’s ever worked in PowerPoint can come in and design a landing page so we have a team of non-designer, non-developers building landing pages every day. Frankly, anyone can come in and learn it in about 30 seconds and we’ve been able to take advantage of that to make sure that even our most junior staff members are able to come in and start building and concepting landing pages very very quickly.”
Unbounce’s monthly subscription plan has been built into the pricing model YSA presents to clients. Having worked with Unbounce landing pages for over three years now, the team knows roughly how many hours each month they’ll spend on design and testing for a client, says Andrew:
“We’re big fans of transparent pricing. Our clients like us because they know, predictably, what they’re going to be paying on a month to month basis. In our proposals, we price in landing page testing and optimization as a flat monthly fee.”
Unbounce also allows Andrew and his team to test ideas and iterate rapidly for their clients:
“Without Unbounce we wouldn’t be able to test as quickly and efficiently as we do now. It would impact our bottom line and would make us slower. We wouldn’t be able to provide all those clients benefits of being nimble, being quick to respond, being able to make changes on the fly, and being able to put up new offers the moment they go live. We’d lose a competitive advantage.”
Growing and innovating together
Over the past few years, Your Search Advisor has been able to leverage Unbounce’s expanding community and product improvements. For example, Andrew says the team takes advantage of the dozens of Unbounce landing pages templates made available by ThemeForest:
“The ThemeForest marketplace has been helpful and we’ve used several of the templates. It’s been encouraging to see the community build up around Unbounce. It’s great to see what other people are working on and the results they’re getting – making that available to the Unbounce community is extremely helpful.”
Your Search Advisor has also seen a great deal of success with Unbounce’s Dynamic Text Replacement feature. DTR allows marketers to automatically tailor the text on their landing pages for each visitor based on their search keyword. This creates a much more relevant experience for the end user while reducing workload for the agency. Not only have they narrowed down the number of landing pages they’re testing by 200-300% – saving the team time and energy – their clients have also seen costs decrease for their PPC campaigns, according to Andrew:
“Whereas before we’d have to build out different pages for lots of long tail keywords, now with Dynamic Text Replacement we can do more testing faster, on fewer pages. The results have been great – we have some pages where we’ve seen a 20% increase in conversion rates. Cost per click has also gone down as Quality Score rises. The results we’re seeing are as good, or significantly better, than the results we were getting with static landing pages.”
For Andrew’s team, Unbounce is more than a tool. It plays an essential role in Your Search Advisor’s growth model and the agency’s ability to fulfill its promise of constantly improving their clients’ ROI:
“Unbounce is a critical part of our workflow. We enjoy using Unbounce because it’s helped us answer our clients needs faster and better. Unbounce has been a multiplier for our team – we can do the work of 10 people with 5 people. We don’t need dedicated design and development resources. We can use Unbounce to scale out what we’re doing on a pay per click campaign. It gives us complete control over the click to conversion process.”