Improving targeting options in AdWords Express

Friday, March 27, 2015
Promoting your business is about getting in front of customers in the moments that matter to them—you design your ad so you can show up to the right people, at the right time, and on the right devices. If you use AdWords Express, you simply write your ad, tell us what kind of business you want to promote, and Google does the rest.

But a frequent request we hear from some AdWords Express advertisers is for a way to narrow down the search phrases that cause their ad to show. That’s why today we’re introducing the ability to remove search phrases that may not be the best fit for your business (and add them back if you need to).

This change should provide more freedom to create ads that reach the kind of customers looking for the products and services you want to promote. For example, if you run a bakery and only want to advertise your award winning cakes, you can now remove search phrases about cupcakes or bread.

Today, we’re rolling out this feature to AdWords Express advertisers based in Australia, Canada, India, New Zealand, South Africa, the United Kingdom, and the United States.

Click the pencil icon inside the “Search phrases” card and uncheck the phrases you want to remove

Log in to AdWords Express to review the search phrases for your business. We look forward to hearing your feedback and making this feature available in more countries soon.

SBDC at UNF Client Among Select Businesses Nationwide Recognized in Washington

Thursday, March 26, 2015
Jacksonville, FL: On March 16, America's Small Business Development Center Network (America's SBDC), the national association of SBDCs, held a special 35th anniversary legislative reception to showcase a sampling of SBDC clients from across the country. Among the 11 SBDC clients from eight states invited to the reception was Kathryn Murphy, owner of Jacksonville-based Comfort Keepers and client of the Florida SBDC at the University of North Florida (UNF).

Murphy was the only client honored from the Florida SBDC Network, representing the thousands of entrepreneurs and small business owners who receive business assistance each year.

"Words can't express the honor I feel in representing the small business community for our State," said Murphy. "Successful small business owners 'burn the midnight oil,' are constant decision makers and problem solvers, and make many personal sacrifices-all to make a difference in the lives of the clients they serve. Staying on top of regulations, treating employees fairly, providing services or products with the highest integrity while making sure there is a profit at the end of the day is no easy task, and thousands of business owners in Florida do this on a daily basis. I am extremely proud and excited to be selected as the representative of Florida's small business community at the Federal level during this special reception highlighting the successes of the American Small Business Development Center."

Comfort Keepers specializes in providing in-home care for older adults needing assistance with daily activities. Thanks to the assistance of the Florida SBDC at UNF and consultant Cathy Hagan, Murphy opened the franchise's first Jacksonville location in 2002 and the second in 2007. Most recently, Murphy worked with the FSBDC to purchase her third location. Under her leadership, the company has grown from two employees to more than 75. In 2011, Murphy was selected as the U.S. Small Business Administration's Woman Business Champion of the Year for both North Florida and the state. In 2013, Murphy was one of nine women to receive the Florida Achievement Award by the Florida Commission on the Status of Women. Last year, she received the Governor's Business Advocate Award presented by Florida Governor Rick Scott.

The America's SBDC 35th Anniversary Reception was held in the Cannon House Office Building in Washington, D.C. Congressman Ander Crenshaw, Chairman of the House Financial Services and General Government Appropriations Subcommittee, and Congressman Steve Chabot of Ohio, Chairman of the Committee on Small Business, addressed reception guests. The mission of America's SBDC and SBDCs nationwide is to help entrepreneurs realize their dream of business ownership and to help existing businesses grow and succeed.

"We are very proud of Kathryn and thrilled that she could be a part of this special ceremony," said Michael Myhre, CEO and Network State Director for the Florida SBDC. "She has devoted her life to helping others and is well-deserving of this recognition. We feel honored to be a part of her success." 


About The SBDC at UNF:  Since 1976, the Florida Small Business Development Center at the University of North Florida has helped over 35,000 small businesses in an 18-county area. With offices in Jacksonville, St. Augustine, Palatka, Homosassa, Yulee, Gainesville, Live Oak and Ocala, the FSBDC at UNF provides assistance through management advice and technical training with little to no-cost to the potential, fledgling and/or well-established small business owners. The SBDC at UNF is funded in part through a cooperative agreement with the U.S. Small Business Administration and is a proud member of the Florida SBDC Network and part of the national Association of Small Business Development Centers. For additional information, visit www.sbdc.unf.edu or call 1.800.450.4624.

Client of the Month: Myers Seth Pump

Wednesday, March 25, 2015
In the industrial pump manufacturing industry, you might not expect to find a petite, soft-spoken Vietnamese woman at the helm.  That is, until you meet Teresa Myers, CEO of Myers Seth Pumps.  Her husband, Doug, started the company in 1991 and Teresa joined him in 1997 after serving as CFO for another manufacturing-based company in Jacksonville.

Myers Seth Pumps (MSP) manufactures and distributes pumps and de-watering equipment throughout the US and abroad. MSP’s international customers have primarily come to them through distributors they have met at US trade shows. Teresa wanted to know more about how to grow and expand the companies export sales.  That’s when she first discovered the services of the Florida SBDC at UNF.  In January 2008, she attended the SBDC’s inaugural International Trade Certificate Program. Over a six-week time period, Teresa was introduced to the tricks of trade and countless resources to help grow MSPs export sales.  In 2009, she returned to the FSBDC to explore opportunities to sell to the government. SBDC Government Contracting Specialist Paul Arrington worked with her to get set up on a GSA schedule and register for appropriate certifications. They continue to work together on and off since then as contracting opportunities arise. 

In 2011, Teresa began working with Cathy Hagan, SBDC at UNF business consultant to explore opportunities for growth and challenges that might get in the way. A detailed financial analysis was prepared using Optimist, software that demonstrates how managing price, cost of goods, and volume could impact MSP’s bottom line. Additionally, Cathy worked with Teresa and Doug to assess processes and address personnel needs as the company pursued growth.

Teresa participated in the SBDC at UNF’s CEO XChange program, a peer-to-peer roundtable group of CEO’s for two years. In March 2012, the SBDC made it possible for her to attend LEAN training offered by the Lean Consortium, which gave her tips and tricks on how to be make her processes more efficient.

While busy in the domestic market, Teresa did not want to miss out on opportunities to sell her products globally.  In June 2012, SBDC international trade specialist Stacy Roussel developed a detailed export marketing plan for Myers Seth Pumps, identifying top markets for the company’s products.

In June 2014, Teresa began working with SBDC at UNF consultant Diane Denslow.  Over a two month time period, Diane facilitated strategic planning sessions with Teresa and other key players in the business with a focus on defining strengths, weaknesses, opportunities and threats. Rapid Research from the USF SBDC provided numerous industry and market reports.  Teresa and key employees took the BOSI assessment, a tool that uncovers the entrepreneurial DNA of key employees to determine what drives them.  The SBDC at UNF graduate student intern used Profit Cents, a financial analysis software that measures how a company compares to industry averages. One of the purposes of the strategic plan was to help Teresa define an exit strategy as she hopes to transition out of the business in the next five years.  Diane provided great insight on issues related to family business succession planning.  Cathy helped Teresa understand other exit strategies and how to maximize the value of the company.  Josh Hay, SBDC at UNF grad student, prepared an analysis of the business to understand how to measure its value.

Teresa and Doug recognize that to grow their business, they must continually innovate to meet the needs of their customers and stay ahead of the competition.  To kick off 2015, they introduced a new pump into the construction market, the DD-6 Double Diaphragm pump.  Doug’s design addresses the needs of the customer for a more versatile pump.  The demand has been exciting, so Myers-Seth is gearing up to hire more employees to support sales and production and are considering the purchase of capital equipment that will automate some of the production process to increase efficiency.
Teresa will continue to be a lifelong learner and work with the SBDC at UNF to grow the business and prepare for the future.

“For most business owners, their ultimate goal is to someday sell their business and have enough financially to retire comfortably. However, without planning properly, most small businesses won't make it past three to five years. We found SBDC to be one of the best places to seek help.  In the last five years, SBDC has provided MSP with guidance, resources, and training through all different stages of our business. Our company has truly enjoyed working and learning from their professional team," says Teresa.

It's time to put America’s small businesses on the map

If you searched for “Dependable Care near Garland, TX” a few months ago, you would have seen a lot of search results—but not the one that mattered to Marieshia Hicks. Marieshia runs Dependable Care Health Service in Garland, and it was her business that was missing. But that all changed last month when she attended a workshop at the Garland Chamber of Commerce called Let’s Put Garland on the Map.

The workshop, run by our Get Your Business Online team, showed her how to use Google My Business—a tool that allows business owners to control the info listed about their business on Google Search and Maps—to help more people find Dependable. Marieshia added an updated phone number, hours of operation, and a description to her business listing. Within a few months, she had more customers come through the door and referrals from doctors who could reach her. This one simple adjustment made a difference. In Marieshia’s words: “It’s huge.”

Huge might be an understatement. Four out of five people use search engines to find local information, like business hours and addresses, and research shows that businesses with complete listings are twice as likely (PDF) to be considered reputable by customers. Consumers are 38 percent more likely to visit and 29 percent more likely to consider purchasing from businesses with complete listings. Yet only 37 percent of businesses (PDF) have claimed a local business listing on a search engine. That’s a lot of missed opportunities for small businesses.

With this in mind, our Get Your Business Online team set out in 2011 to help businesses like Marieshia’s get found online. We’ve gone to every state in the U.S. and worked with thousands of business owners to create free websites and update their Google Search and Maps listings. But there’s a lot more work to do to help businesses take advantage of the vast opportunities yielded by the web. So today, we’re introducing Let’s Put Our Cities on the Map, a new program to help 30,000 cities get their local businesses online.


If we want to help every business in the U.S., we need to reach businesses where they are. So this tailor-made program provides each city with a custom website where local businesses can find helpful resources, including a new diagnostic tool that shows businesses how they appear on Search and Maps, a step-by-step guide for getting online with Google My Business, and a free website and domain name for one year with our partner, Startlogic.

We’re also forming partnerships with local organizations—like chambers and small business development centers—and equipping them with free trainings and customized city materials to run workshops just like the one Marieshia attended in Garland. These local partners know the challenges for local businesses more than anyone—and they recognize the value of getting businesses online. After all, getting Dependable’s information online not only means the world for Marieshia, it means even more for the city of Garland. Complete business info can help generate economic value up to $300,000 a year for a small city or up to $7 million for a large one (PDF). So when our local businesses are online, our local economies benefit.

If you have a favorite local business—a day care, a dentist, a dry cleaner—show your support by helping them get their info online and on the map. Visit your city’s website at www.gybo.com to find out how you can get involved.

Let’s put our cities on the map!