By James Carswell

Presents have been opened, mince pies eaten and we've recovered from our New Year's Eve celebrations. That means one thing: it's time for me to sort through our most read blog articles from the last 12 months. Once you've caught up on emails from the holidays why not catch up on the blogs you missed in 2014.

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Back to blog home

It has been a great year for Periscopix. We were awarded a three star rating by The Sunday Times Best Companies To Work For, their highest accolade, before being announced as one of the top ten places to work in the UK. Later in the year we took home the Best Agency award at the UK Search Awards.

On to the blogs

For the second year running the two blogs that top the list in terms of pageviews were written back in 2012. Jeff's JavaScript & jQuery cookie notification solution shows that cookie regulations are still a hot topic. Olly's quick and simple advice for analysing new and returning visitors in Google Analytics is a solid second place and should still be on your required reading list.

Last year we looked at the ten most read blogs both on our site and that we have written for external sites. This year we're extending the list to the top 15 from our site. Now, the cynical among you might think that's so that one of my own articles scrapes into the list. That might be partly true, but really it's because we've published so many blogs this year on such a wide range of topics that I wanted to ensure you got a good taste of them all (but while you're here, do make sure you check out number 15 on the list below…).

From the Periscopix blog

  1. How to Set Up Google Tag Manager Seamlessly Across Dev, Staging & Live Environments – Ammar Haider

    We wrote a lot about Google Tag Manager (GTM) this year and you'll see this theme running through our top blogs list. The Lookup Table Macro is a new feature that can make your life a lot easier. Here, Ammar shows us why you might want to use it and how to make the most out of it.
  2. Should You Bid On Your Competitors' Brand Terms? – Nancy Reynolds

    A perennial question in the pay per click world and something we get asked a lot, Nancy looks at the pros and cons of competitor brand bidding and provides you with everything you need to make the right decision.
  3. Google Tag Manager's New JavaScript Error & History Listeners – Chris Berger

    Chris talks through two great new features of Google Tag Manager and provides examples and use cases for each.
  4. Christmas Comes Early for RTB – Jessica Maunder

    With online behaviours changing significantly over the winter holiday period, Jess looks at how to prepare programmatic display campaigns to make the most of this seasonal activity.
  5. Google Tag Manager Debug Mode Gets Awesome – Jeff Lukey

    Google released a huge update to GTM over the summer giving us more options and greater clarity on how it actually works. Jeff delves into the changes affecting the GTM debug mode.
  6. New Shopping Campaigns – an Easier Way to Manage Product Listing Ads? – Helena Clark

    Announced back in 2013, Google released a major update to the way PLA campaigns work towards the beginning of 2014. Helena runs through what's changed, what hasn't and how to make sure your new shopping campaigns perform as well as possible.
  7. Rule One: You Do Not Talk About Search Companion (Display Select Keywords Is Okay Though) – Emma Searle

    We had been using a limited beta release of something Google liked to call Search Companion Marketing for a long time. Finally, this was rolled out to everyone under a new name: Display Select Keywords. Emma gives us the lowdown including a history of its evolution.
  8. Demographics & Interests reports in Google Analytics…what's the low-down? – Edgar Mason

    Ed looks at a set of Google Analytics reports that few people know about. The Demographics and Interest reports provide powerful insights into who your visitors are. Take some time to understand these and they'll be a lot of help.
  9. Tracking Calls As Conversions in AdWords – What You Need to Know – Gerren Allen

    A Google survey found that 70% of mobile searchers had called a business directly from an ad. Gerren shows us how to track these phone calls as conversion in AdWords.
  10. 10 Things You Need to Know About Feed Optimisation – Ben Cranmer

    Google Shopping campaigns pull store inventory from a product feed stored in the Google Merchant Center. Ben shows how optimising this feed can increase the likelihood that one of your ads will show and gain that all important click.
  11. How Does RTB Work? – Sergio Lopez

    Here, Sergio gives us an introduction to the mechanics of real-time bidding (aka programmatic display) campaigns. Find out the differences between DSPs, Publishers and Ad Exchanges and how they all interact.
  12. Universal Analytics In Focus: Cross-Device Tracking with User ID – Chris Berger

    Part of a series of blogs on Universal Analytics, Chris looks at one of the big selling points of Google's new tracking method: using User-IDs to achieve cross-device and cross-platform user tracking.
  13. Adding More Data to Google Analytics with Dimension Widening – Edgar Mason

    Another advantage that came with the release of Universal Analytics was the ease of pushing information from external sources into Google Analytics. Ed looks at how we can user dimension widening to add a whole host of useful data into our reports.
  14. Using Google Analytics To Optimize Your AdWords Account 101 – Scarlett Long

    If you have an AdWords account chances are you also have a Google Analytics account. And this is good news because (if set up correctly) GA holds a lot of really useful information about your website. Scarlett looks at how we can use that info to optimise and improve your PPC campaigns.
  15. AdWords Ad Customisers - Dynamic Ads Made Easy – James Carswell

    Another year, another string of new AdWords features. Here we look at how to use ad customisers to make writing dynamic text ads really easy.


And that was the top 15. Before we move on to our externally published articles I'd like to mention three other blogs which were written in 2013 and didn't make last year's list, but have since grown in popularity to be some of our most popular articles this year.

The first of these is Olly's comprehensive review of on-site survey and feedback tools. If you want to find out what visitors really think of your site and your services these types of feedback solutions can be invaluable.

If you have an AdWords campaign, you should be using sitelinks. Mylène shows us how to measure sitelink performance and gain actionable insights for improving campaign performance.

Finally, Sergio looked at 10 great reasons to use Real-Time Bidding. Read this to find out why Sergio gets so excited about running RTB campaigns.

From around the web

  1. Start The New Year With A PPC Health Check: Part 1 – Rebekah Schelfout

    A particularly timely one here, Becky shares her tips for reviewing your campaigns to make sure they are running as best they can. Once you've read this, make sure you also check out part 2.
  2. 4 Google Analytics Reports Every PPC Manager Should Use – Emma Welland

    We've already talked about how useful Google Analytics is to AdWords campaign managers. In this blog Emma runs through some of the most import GA reports.
  3. Image Ad Best Practices For The Google Display Network – Rebekah Schelfout

    Becky looks at some of the most important things to remember when creating image ads for use on the GDN.
  4. YouTube Ads: Getting the Content Right – Helena Clark

    Following on from Becky's post on image ads, here Helena shows how to get the content right when creating video ads.
  5. Programmatic Predictions for 2015 – Liz Rutgersson

    A lot has changed in the world of programmatic display in 2014, but we think there's a lot in store for 2015 too. Liz runs through what we can expect.
  6. How to Form a Remarketing Strategy – Emma Welland

    With on average only 2% of users converting on their first website visit, it's crucial to have a great remarketing strategy in place to entice as much of the other 98% back as possible. Emma shows us some creative strategies to use in your campaigns.
  7. Tips For A Successful PPC Account Takeover – Rebekah Schelfout

    Whether you work at an agency, taking on a new client, or are starting a new role in-house managing the company's AdWords account, you'll need to decide whether to start the account from scratch or build on the existing campaigns. Becky looks at what you need to consider to ensure a smooth transition.
  8. How To Use Google Analytics For Better Bid Adjustments – Emma Welland

    GA allows you to see bid adjustments alongside AdWords data. Emma shows us how to use this to make campaign improvements.
  9. Real-Time Myth-Busting: 5 RTB Mysteries, Solved! – Liz Rutgersson

    There are many myths and misconceptions surrounding the concept of real-time bidding. Liz offers explanations to the most common ones.
  10. Delving Into the Auction Insights Report – Helena Clark

    Helena looks in detail at some of the useful information we can take from AdWords auction insight reports and shows how to use this to analyse campaign performance.

I'll end with a reminder to subscribe to our blog RSS feed, and follow us on Google+ and Twitter to keep up to date with the latest pay per click, analytics and programmatic display articles. If there's anything you'd like to see us writing about in 2015, let us know.

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