September 18, 2003, 12:00 AM

How hundreds of keywords became a high-performing handful at Dartek

The computer reseller used analytics from WebSideStory to focus on the most valuable keyword buys. Tracking each word’s performance in real time revealed which ones produced the best conversions. Paid search is now Dartek’s top-producing online campaign.

Dartek.com, the web arm of computer reseller Dartek, used analytic data from provider WebSideStory Inc. to boost ROI on one of its largest-ever paid search campaigns, the company says. Using WebSideStory`s Hitbox Commerce tool, Dartek tracked the performance of hundreds of keyword positions it purchased on a major search engine in a major pay-per-click campaign.

Tracking each word’s performance in real time revealed which ones produced the best conversions and which drove the most orders and revenue, indicating which were likely to offer the most value over time. The data also provided a more granular view of which keywords best sold which individual products, categories and brands.

Using the information, Dartek was quickly able to narrow its initial keyword purchases to focus its investment on a small number of top keywords and ad groups that it found most valuable. Ultimately, Dartek decided to retain positions in only about 15% of the hundreds of keywords it had purchased at the campaign’s outset, which saved thousands of dollars and more than covered its investment in campaign analytics, according to the company.

Today, the company says its paid search program drives more revenue per customer than any of its other online marketing programs, which it also tracks with Hitbox Commerce. The hosted analytics service “helps us to determine which online marketing programs to invest in and which ones to cut,” says Mike Theriault, vice present of operations for Systemax, of which Dartek is a subsidiary. “Hitbox also has helped us optimize product placement and increase browse-to-buy ratios.”

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