If you are in the loans sector of the finance industry, the opportunities to promote your business on search engines are huge. The vast number of phrases and search volumes makes it hard for marketers to keep track. In the Loans sector alone there are huge numbers of people searching for all types of loans in various sectors.

To help loans sector marketers, ClickThrough have recently released a detailed Loans Sector Keywords Research Report. The report contains search engine key phrase analysis on 25 key types of loans including; secured loans, unsecured loans, homeowner loans, personal loans – as well as more niche areas such as payday loans, bridging loans and tenant loans.

This report helps marketers understand the opportunities and challenges in search engine marketing. The research is based on search behavior and data on search engines from July 2006 and contains; Search Phrase, No. of Searches, Bid Prices for 1st/3rd/5th Place and Number of Competitors Bidding on the Yahoo Uk search engine in the 31 days of July 06.

For example, the table below shows the top 10 searches in July 06 for searches related to loans.

Search Phrase
No. Searches
1st Place 2nd Place 3rd Place
Competing
home loan
1,518,056
£1.89
£1.71
£1.64
40+
loan
977,732
£5.00
£4.98
£4.94
40+
secured loan
866,268
£4.09
£4.03
£4.01
40+
car loan
492,617
£2.00
£1.86
£1.72
40+
motor loan
395,153
£1.90
£1.63
£1.42
40+
home equity loan
332,452
£2.30
£1.56
£1.40
40+
unsecured loan
236,800
£3.04
£3.02
£3.01
40+
personal loan
119,908
£3.54
£3.52
£3.52
40+
bad credit loan
67,742
£2.93
£2.85
£2.73
40+
homeowner loan
66,630
£5.72
£5.21
£5.09
40+

What does this research tell us?

Market share comparisons – The number of searches for each phrase give an insight into the comparable number of searches of each search phrase type. For example, in July 06 ‘Secured Loans’ had 866,000 searches which is more than 3 times more than ‘Unsecured Loans’ with 236,000 searches.

Competitive Landscape – The number of competitors bidding on each search phrase highlights how competitive each search phrase in the loans sector is.

Opportunities in Niche Areas – The less number of competitors for a search phrase means lower cost per clicks. Throughout the report you will find many phrases with good search counts, less competitors with lower cost per clicks which could be a potential opportunity.

Potential Return On Investment – In some cases it’s likely that phrases with higher cost per clicks offer higher sales returns or better conversion to sales ratios because competitors are willing to pay more for them. For example, the phrase ‘homeowner loan’ has a cost per click of £5.72 (1st Place) compared to ‘Motor Loan’ £1.90 (1st Place).

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About the author:

Phil Robinson is an online marketing consultant with over 17 years experience in marketing planning, internet strategy and online acquisition. In 2004, Phil founded ClickThrough, an ethical search marketing agency. He gives best practice training for businesses, runs seminars and writes books on digital marketing.