Sometimes watching television can be frustrating and I don’t mean because of the silliness of CSI awesome computing and forensic capabilities No what I find silly is the way advertisers try to leverage the web. So I would like to introduce you to a case example.
Park Hampers – Park Hampers are a Christmas saving scheme based in the UK they work by you paying for your hamper in the weeks months prior to Christmas when it comes to Christmas time they deliver your hamper. Its aimed more at low income families or people who are terrible at saving. Their SEO team should be shot!
Their recent TV campaign tells you to visit park11.tv this is of course a redirect to a truly terrible landing page, but it is not the landing page that concerns me but the fact other then this URL there is no mention of Park11 or Park11.tv anywhere on there site this results in a Google Search for Park11 being:
Christmas Hampers? No. Parkisons disease for Christmas? No thanks
What has gone wrong for Park?
Park obviously want to track number of hits their TV campaign is bringing to their website so have created a unique url for that campaign the aforementioned park11.tv this I assume logs the user before redirecting to the landing page. Park have numerous other URLs leading to various landing pages and mini sites so this seems to be part of an overall strategy the problem is that as the unique url has diversified away from the core brand they haven’t laid any foundation on their site to cope with it.
So they don’t show in a Google search for Park or Park11 so what?
How many people put urls into Google not the url bar on a web browsers? I would suggest quite a lot especially those people who perhaps are not as web savy which are in part the customers Park Hampers are aiming at. So by having a sponsored listing they are simply losing traffic and what traffic they are picking up they are paying for via PPC. Not only are they paying for an advert on tv they are then paying to pick up the traffic from that advert!
In the case of Park they have a small reputation issue as well, while badly researched by them Park11 association with Parkinsons can’t be helping as users arrive at Google but find no results for hampers they do read a pile of scientific jargon if that doesn’t put the user off they may well visit the wikipedia page on Parkinsons. Which to be fair I think every one should so here is the link again.
How do you solve the problem
First off all sorting out the rest of Park Hampers site so that its pages are ranking, then reference Park11 campaign create a dedicated landing page for it with the keywords in use and at least internal navigation pointing to the site. Just to be safe surely you would optimise for keywords such as Park11 & “Park Eleven”
Park are not the only company not to do this, but since they are on tele right now advertising I thought they were the perfect example.
Update: Myself and Carolyn were bored over the weekend and so have been playing with look at Park Hampers redirect strategy to say its a mess is an understatement, they own park1.tv through to park40.tv and seem to be using most in various tracking, about 20 of the Google results for park1-40 actually have Park anywhere in the top 10, examples of other Park redirects include park5.tv and park15.tv. This itself wouldn’t be that bad but in addition Park own another 8 or so domains including myparkmag.co.uk,
gopark.co.uk etc these are not minisites but rather badly designed redirects. In short a mess, don’t fall for the same mistakes.
Update2: I incorrectly identified gopark.co.uk as belonging to Park Hampers, this is in fact a site owned by a third party with no link to Park Hampers who has asked I clarify rather then remove the reference, please see my about page for my Disclaimer on Facts and Figures. I have also written a more fuller apology to gopark.co.uk.