The Truth About Overtures Pay-Per-Click Program

Before Google's AdWords, Overture was the preeminent pay-per- click program. It's still a monolith in its own right that deserves a closer look.

Overture's pay-per-click program actually consists of four different programs: Precision Match, Local Match, Content Match and Site Match. However, for this article, I'm just going to be talking about Precision Match.

Precision Match (formerly Pay-For-Performance Search). According to Overture the program allows you to:

  • List your business in sponsored search results across the web.

  • Control your position by the amount you bid on keywords.

  • Set your own price-per-click.

  • Pay only when a customer clicks through to your site.

Overture claims its Precision Match listings reach over 80 percent of active Internet users, with your business showing up in the results of some of the web's most popular sites, including Yahoo!, MSN, InfoSpace and AltaVista.

You have a choice of two sign-up options: Fast Track and Self Serve. Here are the differences: Fast Track allows you sign-up online or call 866-747-7327. Self Serve allows you sign-up online only. Fast Track offers a 3 business days turnaround.

Self Serve--5 business days. Fast Track offers expert assistance with. search term selection. Self Serve doesn't. Fast Track offers expert assistance with titles & descriptions. Self Serve doesn't. Fast Track offers expert assistance with budget management. Self serve doesn't. Fast Track offers a customized proposal.

Self Serve doesn't. Fast Track allows you total control of your campaign. Yeah right!

Self Serve does as well. Don't make me laugh! Fast Track offers free account optimization.

Self Serve doesn't. Fast Track offers expert assistance with tracking URLs. Self Serve doesn't. With Fast Track editorial approval automatic. With Self Serve--Subject to review. Fast Track has a one-time, non-refundable service fee of $199.

Self Serve is free.

And now for the fine print. Remember, you're already paying $199 for Fast Track. But wait, there's more!

Account optimization can be redeemed no earlier than 60 days and no later than 180 days from date of sign up.

A $50 initial deposit is non-refundable and will be applied to click-throughs or to the minimum monthly spend. Each account has a $20 minimum monthly spend. There is a minimum bid requirement of $0.10 per click-through. Sellers of certain legally restricted products may require certification at extra cost.

Can you believe all of those ridiculous charges? With Fast Track, you're already $240 in the hole, before you even get started! Does that seem fair to you?

Well, in order to be fair to Overture, before I wrote this article, I talked to 25 past and current Overture advertisers. A handful were extremely happy with Overture. The rest, however said they had made no money and that Overture's service was extremely slow or non-existant.

I also had a lot of people e-mail me complaining that Overture's Keyword Suggestion Tool is inaccurate, and misleading, and that the results they got were a lot different than the figures Overture claimed for many keywords.

In conclusion, I say "run, don't walk away" from Overture's pay-per-click program. Remember, this is the same company that signed an agreement with "scumware" giant Gator.

I think that should tell you all you need to know about Overture!

About The Author

Dean Phillips is an Internet marketing expert, writer, publisher and entrepreneur. Questions? Comments? Dean can be reached at mailto: [email protected].

Visit his website at:

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