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Using Keywords in your Ticket Ads

It’s been a while since our last post (before the holidays) and we thought it would be time to focus today’s lesson on a simple and often overlooked technique to get your ticket ads more traffic – use good meta keywords!   Although meta keywords alone are no longer a major factor search engines consider when ranking search results, they should not be left off the page as they help direct the search engines as to what terms in your post are important. In fact, we feel they are so important they are mandatory when submitting your ticket ad.

Often overlooked, well crafted keywords can bring even more highly targeted traffic to your ticket ad!

Often overlooked, well crafted keywords can bring even more highly targeted traffic to your ticket ad!

When posting an ad it’s always a good idea to put together a mental list of the most important search terms.  When you make your list, start by looking over the ad copy on the submit ad form and ask yourself, “what terms are users likely to use when search for tickets to your event?”.  Pick  the terms that most accurately describe the event and tickets for sale and are likely to be used in internet searches.  Because of the uber-competitiveness of the current search engine placement landscape in the ticket industry, pages need to be very focused on one or two specific keyword phrases in order to have a chance to get a top ten placement.  For example, an ad about 2010 Winter Games snowboarding  and hockey tickets doesn’t have much of a chance to get high placement for either “2010 Winter Games Hockey Tickets” or “2010 Winter Games Snowboarding Tickets”.  Essentially, your keywords would have to be all over the place and this dilutes the value of each keyword.  This is why we do not allow (nor recommend) generic ads.  Each ad posted should represent a group of tickets to a specific event and your should be able to describe that with 4 keyword terms or phrases.

So now that we have covered the basics of keywords, let’s try some examples.  Let’s say you are looking to sell tickets to 2010 Winer Games Snowboarding Events- what are the key terms that best describe the event and the ticket that are for sale?  Let’s make a list and answer the 4 basic questions that are critical to ticket ads:

  • What is the event? 2010 Winter Games Snowboarding
  • When is the event? 2/15/2010
  • Where is the event? Cypress Mountain, Victoria, British Columbia
  • Where are the tickets? Category A Reserved

Now after having answered those basic questions, you have your finely tuned keyword list:  “2010 Winter Games Snowboarding, 2/15/2010, Cypress Mountain, Victoria, British Columbia, Category A Reserved”.  Now you’ve just told the search engines what are the important terms in your ad!  It’s that simple.

Search Engine Friendly Titles

One of the most important and often over-looked details when posting an ad to sell you sports, concert, or theater tickets is the title.  Not only is the title you chose important in order to provoke a potential ticket buyer to click your ad but it is also an important part of optimization for search engines.  A good title should both entice the reader and be something someone might type into a search engine to find the tickets you are trying to sell.  Sounds simple enough, right?

It certainly can be simple but anticipating search terms can be quite difficult.  Probably the easiest titles to write are for sports events.  A good title for sports tickets really only needs to include 2 pieces of information: 1) the teams involved and 2) the date.  For example take a look at the title for the most popular ticket ad at Free Tickets Classifieds, Ole Miss vs. LSU Tickets 11/21/2009.  This short and to-the-point title is exactly what hundreds of people have typed into a search engine and through the power of FTC this ad is currently in the top 3 of the google search results.  While this simple title technique is exteremly effective you can always spice it up with other similar variations: Cheap Ole Miss vs. LSU Tickets 11/21, Buy Ole Miss vs. LSU Tickets, Ole Miss – LSU football Tickets, Discount Ole Miss LSU tickets, etc.  By now I hope you are getting the point- short is best.

With concert and theater tickets things get a little more tricky.  When searching for something like Taylor Swift tickets there are many more variations of the same title to consider.  Most potential customers are not going to search for something generic like, “Taylor Swift Tickets”.  Instead they are going to search for these tickets with additional date, geolocation, and/or venue parameters included- the key is hitting the right ones.  Further compounding the situation is that these parameters often vary by location, performer, and venue.  For example someone in Austin Texas looking for Taylor Swift tickets might seach for tickets by entering terms like, “Taylor Swift Tickets Austin” or “Taylor Swift Tickets 3/10/2010″.   However, someone in Uncasville Connecticut may take a different approach with a much more well known venue (i.e. “Mohegan Sun Taylor Swift Tickets” or “Taylor Swift at Mohegan Sun Tickets”).  Sometimes with concert tickets it takes a little trial and error to figure out what terms produce the best results without overloading your title with too many terms (too many words in a title dilutes to keyword importance).

Although there is no magic formula to construct good ad titles, its important to keep in mind what both the costumer and search engines are looking for:  a brief description of what you are selling.  If you make your titles along those lines you ads will quickly appear at the top of Google and will be bringing in ticket customers by the boatload.