11 February 2009

Which Online Marketing Tactic Delivers Highest ROI?

A survey of over 1,200 Internet marketers conducted by MarketingSherpa and has found that pay-per-click (PPC) advertising tops the list when it comes to return on investment (ROI). Around 51 percent of marketers surveyed said paid search delivered a ‘great’ ROI.

Survey respondents voted email marketing as next best effective, with 44 percent describing email as having a great ROI. This was followed by search engine optimization (SEO) with 39 percent of marketers deeming it to have a great ROI.

Here’s the list of how those surveyed viewed a range of online marketing tactics:

  • PPC - 51 percent said it delivered a great ROI, 8 percent said it delivered a poor ROI.
  • Email marketing - 44 percent said great, 16 percent said poor
  • SEO - 39 percent said great, 15 percent said poor
  • Behavioral targeting - 32 percent said great, 18 percent said poor
  • Affiliate marketing - 31 percent said great, 28 percent said poor
  • Contextual targeting - 26 percent said great, 16 percent said poor
  • Rich media ads - 23 percent said great, 27 percent said poor
  • Contextual text ads - 32 percent said great, 17 percent said poor
  • Banner ads - 13 percent said great, 34 percent said poor
  • Emails to third party (rented) lists - 12 percent said great, 49 percent said poor
  • Popups, pop-under - 9 percent said great, 67 percent said poor

MarketingSherpa also examined how much marketers spent on each tactic. Interestingly, they found that quite a few tactics rated as poor still attracted substantial funding. Marketers spent significantly more on banner advertising than email marketing… yet email marketing ranks significantly higher in terms of ROI. It will be interesting to see how this chart looks next year if, as many expect, marketers focus much more on measurable / direct response oriented online marketing tactics.

Back to Top