According to recent studies, paid ads get 65 percent of clicks in searches with high commercial intent. This can include a paid ad set up to target a specific audience. Take a look at how to set up new PPC campaigns for good returns.
PPC advertising has become one of the most influential online marketing options for businesses. It is designed to engage people and lead into sales that can improve the bottom line. To make sure you do this the right way and launch a good PPC campaign, it’s best to understand the intricate details beforehand.
What is PPC advertising?
The term stands for pay-per-click advertising, meaning that each time someone clicks the ad, a set rate is charged to the advertiser. This rate can vary based on the agreement you’ve established beforehand.
You can use PPC to display ads for specific services or goods depending on what you’re selling. The goal is to put these ads in front of people who are already interested in the subject and might be looking for the product through search engines, forums or websites.
Setting up PPC campaigns
1. Establish a budget.
Start by establishing a daily, weekly or monthly budget as soon as possible. This is the set rate at which you will launch the ads. If you don’t have a budget, it is easy to start wasting money on failed campaigns. A set budget can streamline the setup and make sure it works according to your financial means. If not, it is easy to toss away money without even noticing it.
Look at the various rates and learn more about them before launching the ad on a platform. This will give you the gist of what’s going on and how much it will cost per click.
2. Set campaign goals.
You can only see the value of PPC advertising if you sets goals for your business. This can include the number of leads you want to come in via ads or even the number of recorded sales per ad. All of this information should be tracked and kept in mind during the campaign.
By looking into and establishing these goals, it’s easier to avoid making mistakes. A PPC ad is only as good as the person running it. Setting goals helps you remain on top of things without failing.
3. Split-test ads and platforms.
Take the time to split-test as much as possible, whether with advertisements or platforms. You want to take all of this information into consideration beforehand. The goal is to determine how the ads will be run and how they will work.
For example, imagine one ad doesn’t work well but another does. You don’t want to keep running the failed ad because you don’t know which one is doing well. This happens all the time when you put up a bunch of ads and hope for the best.
4. Emphasize relevance.
PPC advertisements have to be as focused as possible because of the value they bring. Relevance is the name of the game, because putting ads up in front of the wrong people will lead to inefficiencies. Targeting is essential for the long term.
Focus on a solution that is as relevant as possible. Take the time to sit down and write specific keywords that relate to your business and its products. The goal is to have a good feel for what you want to target.
5. Don’t ignore tracking.
Let’s imagine an ad has been set up and it’s time to start raking in new leads. How are you going to keep tabs on what’s working and what isn’t? This is where tracking can help, as it ensures each lead who engages with the ad is recorded. With Google AdWords, you can have all of this information listed in the main console online. It’s best to go through this information and set up a personal tracker as well. This reduces the wasted money from unrefined campaigns.
PPC advertising can have a lot of benefits, but it is important to set things up properly. It takes time and a lot of work, but it is well worth the hassle. A good PPC advertising campaign can launch your business forward better than anything else could. This is why it is such an appreciated online marketing method: It works well and can change the outlook of a business in a matter of days or even minutes.
With increasing online competition, pay-per-click (PPC) is becoming a critical way to get your content in front of your potential customers.
With increasing online competition, pay-per-click (PPC) is becoming a critical way to get your content in front of your potential customers.
One pay-per-click program is called Google AdWords.
AdWords is an online advertising service where advertisers pay to display brief advertising copy, product listings and video content within the Google ad network to web users.
Here are three myths that may be keeping marketers from implementing successful AdWords campaign.
Myth #1: People don’t click on Google ads
Google is a publicly traded company—anyone can access their financial records that tell the story.
Google generates more than $100M in revenue every single day from people clicking on their ads. With an average cost per click between $1 and $2 that’s more than 50M clicks/day.
Google experiments constantly to make their ads entice more enticing.
They’re not going to present you with a free, organic result at the top of the search engine results page when they could showcase several ads that generate revenue. Start paying attention: The first few line items at the top of every search is an ad.
One more thing: Think about your own behavior
When you see an ad that entices you, do you click on it? Of course you do!
Smart companies are using remarketing efforts that identify customer tastes to present you with items that you may have been looking at earlier in the day.
They may serve up similar items or those by the same designer or manufacturer. I shop almost entirely online, and I’m fascinated by remarketing, which illustrates how marketing has gotten smarter.
Myth #2: My competitors can just click on my ads all day, costing me money
Google has extremely sophisticated technology to prevent “click fraud” and “invalid clicks.” This involves the analysis of several click-pattern factors.
Google provides very good reports on AdWords campaign performance, and any suspicious activity is quickly exposed. If a business is concerned they are victims of click fraud, they can contact Google directly to launch an investigation. Google reimburses questionable clicks.
Myth #3: AdWords is an outbound marketing tactic
AdWords is designed to showcase your content when potential customers are initiating a Google search. It’s the only inbound marketing tactic that guarantees your content will rank high on Google when a user performs a search. This is one very attractive reason to be using Google as your PPC platform. The sheer number of Google searches/day makes you part of this community.
PPC delivers a better user experience for the searcher
Think of the information you provide when you set up your Google account. This all becomes part of a huge database, and databased information makes it searchable.
Because of this information, when you create a Google ad, you are able to drill down by location, demographics, interests, etc.
This is not specific just to Google—Facebook, Linkedin and other social channels also provide rich search preferences.
Integrating AdWords with your inbound marketing strategy
Along with your existing content marketing and SEO (search engine optimization) efforts, PPC is becoming a critical component of an inbound marketing strategy.
Branded content and pay-per-click (PPC) aren’t ordinarily included together in the same section of a digital media plan, but there are definite synergies between these two marketing disciplines.
One way to increase the efficiency and profitability of a PPC budgetis to examine how PPC can be used to support really fun and creative branded content.
Branded content is evolving
The category of branded content has exploded online within both business-to-business (B2B) and business-to-consumer (B2C) marketing, according to data from PQMedia and Polar.
Branded content goes by many names, but it originated as “advertorial” content (in print) and as “infomercials” (in broadcast TV). This form of content is still very popular, particularly in certain industry segments in which the use of the brand in advertorials can be authentic and compelling.
In the digital domain, branded content has now evolved to more closely resemble the soap opera model of days long past.
The media strategy behind soap operas was brilliant: Unlike product placement within shows (another form of branded content), large soap manufacturers collaborated with the major television (TV) networks to underwrite the production cost of shows they knew their target audience would love and watch religiously.
Of course, the soap brand names were announced prominently at the beginning and end of any particular episode, and sponsorship arrangements also specified the airing of a certain number of regular advertising spots mentioning the brand.
Where PPC comes in
If the stats are any indication, your company (or client) is probably doing some form of digital branded content already, and this content lies somewhere along the continuum of advertorial, digital product placement (influencers) to sponsored content.
Like the soap opera sponsors of yore, the hope is to make sure the content is interesting, too, and resonates with the right audience.
That’s great news for you as search marketers. With the tools at your disposal, you can make sure more people who are interested in the branded content actually have an opportunity to see it.
In nearly every case, the branded content is centered around keywords that are NOT currently in your PPC campaigns.
The team working on that initiative probably isn’t thinking about amplifying the impact of that branded content (much of which is expensive to produce and place) using PPC search. Branded content opens up a whole segment of keywords you can potentially bid on (some might require specific contractual language).
Here are some general buckets of keywords that probably are new to your campaigns (unless you’ve been developing and hosting a lot of informational and educational content on your site):
1. Keywords related to the topic of the article or content your marketing team is sponsoring. A food brand might be paying for inclusion within a section of an online publisher’s pages where recipes are featured (including that brand as an ingredient). Why not bid on keywords relating to each recipe?
For an athletic-wear brand sponsoring the college soccer coverage on a sports publisher site, why not bid on team names and/or team member names (in conjunction with the sport or team name)?
Or (my favorite), if I were on the marketing team of Smith & Forge Hard Cider, I would be using PPC search to support the amazing Thrillist-produced content in which Thrillist disguised competitive athlete Kenneth Leverich as a senior citizen at Muscle Beach to challenge bodybuilders.
In this example, keywords could be included that include the terms “muscle beach” along with each of the lifts, tricks, moves and even equipment names related to this fun video.
2. Keywords related to the problem solved by the content. When Chase, Ritz-Carlton and The Wall Street Journal teamed up for “Inside the Moment,” they could have bid on the cities, neighborhoods and featured places in their virtual reality (VR) tours of notable cities and places.
3. Keywords related to celebrities or other VIPs used in the content. This may require a line in their contracts to allow their names and likenesses to be used to promote the content, so be sure to check that out before getting started.
For example, 1800 Tequila and Billboard Magazine’s features of “Hip-Hop History” by city included mentions and participation of a lot of popular performers. (To further filter this and other alcoholic beverage PPC support campaigns, remember to use “age” as a demographic filter for bid depression and bid boost.)
Bridging across marketing silos
Agencies play an important role in making sure branded content is on-message and on-brand, particularly if it talks about the brand.
If the content being sponsored is more of an audience-focused strategy to get the brand in front of the right people, then the level of editorial control exerted by the agency should be less, particularly if a very important person (VIP) or influencer is being used.
Things need to be authentic.
I’ve always said PPC search doesn’t sit in a silo. Expanding a PPC campaign to support branded content that costs a pretty penny to produce is a great way to get involved in the broader marketing of your brand.
Because I have a strong interest in nonprofit causes, I especially liked a piece of branded content done by Gawker to educate on the risks of smoking, not just to humans, but also to cats that live with humans, in a simple game called “Catmageddon.”
I’ve become such a fan of branded content and the power of collaboration between publishers/broadcaster/influencers with agencies and clients that I’m actually crazy enough to be bidding on Gawker to apply cause marketing best practices to publishing.
Check with your teams and see if they are doing branded content, and take the opportunity to add significant value to the company and expose you to new PPC strategies.
Pay-per-click (PPC) advertising remains an effective way to grab the attention of your target audience and drive them back to your site so they can engage with your products and services.
Obviously, the higher your ads appear to the top, the more likely that someone will click on that ad.
That said, just getting the click isn’t the goal.
Getting a click that results in a sale, phone call, or lead is the goal.
In order to ensure the best opportunity for success, it is incredibly important to establish some sort of regular daily cadence or task list for your PPC campaigns.
While the rise in AdWords automation is helping with some, here are three PPC tasks that you should be doing every day to ensure nothing in the account is broken.
1. Check Your Key Performance Indicators
Key performance indicators (KPIs) are an important metric to help marketers determine the effectiveness of many different kinds of campaigns.
When you decide to invest in PPC, you need some way of measuring the performance of your ads, or you’re just throwing away money without knowing whether your campaign is working.
The types of KPIs that you choose to prioritize will depend on your marketing goals.
Some of the most common types of KPIs for PPC campaigns include:
- Number of clicks: This KPI tells you how many people actually clicked on your ad, which gives you a good idea if your ad is grabbing people’s attention. Clicks won’t always give you a full picture of how well your ads are doing, but they are an important piece of the puzzle.
- Click-through rate: This KPI is calculated by dividing the number of clicks by the total number of impressions (views). There are different sweet spots for click-through-rates based on your industry.
- Cost per click: This measures the amount of money you’re spending on your ad campaign based on how many people click on that ad. It is calculated by dividing the total amount you paid for a campaign by the number of times someone clicked on the ad. It’s a good way for you to determine whether your budget for that campaign was too high, too low, or just about right. A good rule of thumb is to check in on your brand CPCs. If you see a spike there, it can negatively affect performance.
- Conversion rate: This measures the number of conversions that were directly generated by your ads. It is calculated by dividing the number of conversions by the total number of clicks.
These are just a few KPIs that are important in a PPC campaign.
Checking through these numbers on a daily basis can help you see if there are any outliers like a sudden surge of clicks or higher conversion rates on a particular day.
2. Review Your Negative Keyword List
One of the best ways to attract more clicks is to make sure that the language of your ads optimizes the most appropriate keywords for a search.
But when you’re running a PPC campaign, it’s equally important that you create and monitor your negative keyword list.
If you fail to include a negative keyword list on their campaigns, it can seriously dent the ROI for your ads.
Let’s say you’re selling shoes online.
You will want to include keyword variations that include gender, intent-based queries (e.g., “buy” and “on sale”) and qualifiers (e.g., “running”).
But what if you wanted to exclude higher-volume, lower converting terms (e.g., “womens shoes”).
In the below example, you can see how excluding terms based on match type will impact your ability to target specific types of keywords:
By creating a list of negative keywords, you’re telling search engines that these are not relevant words for your business and that your ads shouldn’t show up when people conduct searches using those words.
You should review your negative keyword list daily because search behavior changes regularly.
Make sure your list is updated to avoid spending money on ads that show up in front of people who aren’t part of your target audience.
There are two quick ways to find potential negative keywords:.
Popular Search Terms
The new ‘Searches’ card in Google AdWords will highlight the most popular words and phrases driving traffic to your site.
Click the Words tab for an even more granular look.
In this example, we discovered two potential negatives to include in the campaign:
Knowing which keywords a majority of searchers are using to find your website can help you both add valuable new keywords, and create lists of negative keywords you discover to be irrelevant.
Search Query Reports
Google’s Search Query Reports will give you the most comprehensive way to check for negative keywords that you may need to add to your list.
While getting this granular may not be a daily task, if you see some warning signs (like those in the previous example) a dive into your search query report from the previous day may be warranted.
3. Review Your Daily Budget
Your AdWords average daily budget is not fixed, which means that as you review your campaigns daily, you can change that budget based on analyzing some key KPIs.
Combine that with Google’s daily budget change that increased daily budgets by 2x and you have a good reason to monitor this daily.
The most common application of budget management involves shifting across days of the week.
For example, if you notice that your ads are generating more traffic on a Wednesday, but are dead on a Monday, you may want to shift some of your budget to take advantage of what’s happening on Monday to maximize your ROI.
Ad Delivery Method
Reviewing your budget can also help you determine whether you need to change your ad delivery method.
AdWords has two types of delivery method:
- Accelerated delivery: This shows your ads earlier in the day and typically chew up your daily budget before noon. You can only choose accelerated delivery if you’re using AdWords’ automated bidding.
- Standard delivery: This displays your ads more evenly during the day. If you choose manual bidding, your campaigns automatically default to standard delivery.
Another quick check-in on your daily budget spending is how your budget is being spent across devices.
With the explosion of mobile, if not kept in check, the percentage of mobile spend compared to conversion can become skewed – essentially stealing your opportunities for desktop conversions.
Similar to the Popular Search Terms card, Google also has a “Device Type” card that will show differences across devices for clicks, impressions, and conversions.
Visually, this is a no-brainer to add to your daily budget checks.
Adaptation Is the Key to PPC Campaigns
When you launch a PPC campaign, one of the keys to success is making sure that you stay on top of KPIs, keywords and budget so that you can quickly determine if something is awry, and change how you’re approaching things.
The whole idea of PPC is to generate more quality visitors so they can turn into customers, but if you’re not performing daily reviews of your campaigns, a small problem can quickly snowball into a crisis.
Google AdWords is a highly effective marketing channel for brands to engage with customers.
The auction-based pay-per-click (PPC) model has revolutionized the advertising industry, but beneath the seductive simplicity of this input-output relationship lies a highly sophisticated technology.
Within this article, we round up five advanced features that can help you gain that vital competitive advantage.
Google AdWords has undergone a host of changes over the past 12 months, some cosmetic and some functional. Google’s prime revenue-driver has a new, intuitive look and feel that makes it even easier for marketers to assess performance and spot new opportunities.Under the hood, AdWords is home to some increasingly sophisticated machine learning technology. Everything from bid adjustments to audience behavior and even search intent is now anlyzed by machine learning algorithms to improve ad targeting and performance.
All of this is changing how we run search campaigns, largely for the better.
Meanwhile, there are broad trends that continue to converge with search. Voice-activated digital assistants, visual search, and the ongoing growth of ecommerce all center around Google’s search engine.
At the intersection of Google and these emerging trends, paid search will evolve and new ways to reach audiences will arise.
Though this future-gazing reveals just how exciting the industry is, marketers also need to keep one eye firmly on the present.
As it stands, AdWords provides a vast array of features, all of which can impact campaign performance. Though automation is taking over more aspects of the day-to-day running of an account, there is arguably more need than ever before for seasoned paid search experts how know how to get the most out of the platform.
Below are five advanced AdWords features that can boost any PPC campaign.
For all of AdWords’ virtues, it has not been able to rival Facebook in terms of sheer quantity of demographic targeting options.
As part of Google’s ongoing shift from a keyword focus to a customer-centric approach, demographic targeting has improved very significantly.
This feature now allows advertisers to target customers by income and parental status, along with gender and age. Targeting by income is only available for video advertising and is restricted to the U.S., Japan, Australia, and New Zealand for the moment.
Nonetheless, this is a noteworthy update and provides an advanced feature that many brand will welcome.
The available options now include:
Demographic targeting for Search, Display or Video campaigns:
- Age: “18-24,” “25-34,” “35-44,” “45-54,” “55-64,” “65 or more,” and “Unknown”
- Gender: “Female,” “Male,” and “Unknown”
Demographic targeting for Display or Video campaigns can include:
- Parental status: “Parent,” “Not a parent,” and “Unknown”
Demographic targeting for Video campaigns can include:
- Household income (currently available in the U.S., Japan, Australia, and New Zealand only): “Top 10%,” “11-20%,” “21-30%,” “31-40%,” “41-50%,” “Lower 50%,” and “Unknown”
Combined with the improved user interface, this can lead to some illuminating reports that highlight more detail about audiences than we have ever seen in this platform.
It’s not perfect yet and has some drawbacks in practice, as creating audiences can be quite labor-intensive when combining different filters. Nonetheless, demographic targeting is improving and will be an area of focus for Google this year.
Our previous article on demographic targeting goes into more detail on how to set this feature up.
A very natural byproduct of the increase in mobile searches has been an explosion in the number of calls attributed to paid search.
In fact, BIA/Kelsey projects that there will be 162 billion calls to businesses from smartphones by 2019.
Search forms a fundamental part of this brand-consumer relationship, so businesses are understandably keen to ensure they are set up to capitalize on such heightened demand.
Click-to-call can be an overlooked opportunity, as it does require a little bit of setup. If advertisers want to add call extensions, report specifically on this activity, and even schedule when these extensions appear, it is necessary to do this manually within AdWords.
Helpfully, it is now possible to enable call extensions across an account, simplfying what was once a cumbersome undertaking.
This is becoming an automated process in some aspects, whereby Google will identify landing pages that contain a phone number and generate call extensions using this information. However, some manual input will be required to get the most out of this feature.
Our step-by-step guide contains a range of handy tips for marketers who woud like to enable click-to-call campaigns.
Optimized ad rotation
Google made some very notable changes to its ad rotation settings in the second half of 2017.
In essence, ad rotation constantly tests different ad variations to find the optimal version for your audience and campaign KPIs.
Google’s machine learning technology is a natural fit for such a task, so it is no surprise that Google wants to take much of the ad rotation process out of the hands of advertisers and turn it into a slick, automated feature.
Perhaps this focus on the machine learning side of things has led advertisers to beleive that the process now requires no input from them.
A recent study by Marin Software across their very sizeable client base found that many ad groups contain fewer than three creatives:
This is very significant, as Google recommends providing at least three ads in every ad group. Their official stance is, “The more of your ads our system can choose from, the better the expected ad performance.”
Creating a range of ads provides the resources Google needs to run statistically significant tests. No matter how sophisticated the machine learning algorithms are, with only one or two ads in each group there is very little they can do to improve performance.
There is a broader lesson to be taken here, beyond just getting the most out of this AdWords feature.
Even the most advanced technology requires the right quantity and quality of inputs. Although more and more elements of AdWords management can be automated, this doesn’t mean we can leave the machines to their own devices.
There are plentiful best practices that we still need to follow. Optimizing your ad rotation by including at least three ads in each group certainly counts as one of these.
Custom intent audiences
Google is clearly making a play for more of the traditionally ‘top of funnel’ marketing approaches.
The launch of more granular custom intent audiences with the Google Display Network is part of a wider strategy to take on the likes of Facebook by providing greater control over target audiences.
Google’s guidelines provide clear definition over how this recently launched feature works:
For Display campaigns, you can create a custom intent audience using in-market keywords – simply entering keywords and URLs related to products and services your ideal audience is researching across sites and apps.
In-market keywords (Display campaigns)
- Enter keywords, URLs, apps or YouTube content to reach an online audience that’s actively researching a related product or service.
- It’s best practice to add keywords and URLs (ideally 15 total) that fit a common theme to help AdWords understand your ideal audience.
- Avoid entering URLs that require people to sign in, such as social media or email services.
- Include keywords related to the products and services that this audience is researching; these will be used as the focal point for building the custom intent audience.
Custom intent audiences: Auto-created (Display campaigns)
To make finding the right people easy, Google uses machine learning technology to analyse your existing campaigns and auto-create custom intent audiences. These audiences are based on the most common keywords and URLs found in content that people browse while researching a given product or service.
For example, insights from existing campaigns may show that people who’ve visited a sporting goods website have also actively researched all-weather running shoes. AdWords may then auto-create a new ‘waterproof trail running shoes’ custom intent audience to simplify the process of reaching this niche segment of customers.
Once more, we see the addition of machine learning into a core Google product.
These automated audience lists are generated based on activity across all of your Google marketing channels, including YouTube and Universal App Campaigns, along with Search and the Google Display Network.
Although this does not yet provide the level of targeting that Facebook can offer, custom intent audiences do dramatically improve the product and they move Google closer to a truly customer-centric approach.
Sophisticated advertisers will find thata this advanced feature improves performance for both prospecting and remarketing.
Smart bidding has some crossover with the other AdWords features on our list. In a nutshell, smart bidding uses machine learning to asses the relationships between a range of variables and improve performance through the AdWords auction.
It is capable of optimizing bids to ensure the best possible return on investment against the advertiser’s target KPIs. Smart bidding does this by looking at the context surrounding bids and isolating the factors that have historically led to specific outcomes. Based on this knowledge, it can automatically bid at the right level to hit the advertiser’s campaign targets.
These targets can be set based on a target CPA (cost per acquisition), ROAS (return on ad spend), or CPC (cost per click).
The latest option available to brands is named ‘maximize conversions’ and this will seek to gain the optial number of conversions (whatver those may be for the brand in question) against their set budge.
As we have noted already, these algorithms require substantial amounts of data, so this is a feature best used by this with an accrual of historical AdWords performance data.
Smart bidding is also not quite a ‘set and forget’ bidding strategy. Some marketers will still prefer the control of manual bidding and it would be fair to say that smart bidding levels the playing field somewhat across all advertisers.
Nonetheless, it is a hugely powerful AdWords feature and can create multiple account performance efficiencies.
When it comes to selling online, pay per click (PPC) advertising provides one of the quickest solutions to drive sales online. Unlike SEO that can take months to see results, running a PPC campaign can generate results overnight.
One of the main platforms for this type of advertising is Google AdWords. AdWords will enable your website to be in front of potential customers looking for products like yours in real time.
However great, AdWords comes with its challenges. Campaigns have to be constantly reviewed and optimized to produce the best results. This can be time-consuming and overwhelming, but, using the right techniques, you can manage to save a lot of time and wasted budget.
After managing hundreds of AdWords campaigns, we have compiled a comprehensive mix of basic and advanced tips to help you take your eCommerce site to the next level. Discover how to apply them to your campaigns below!
1. Create a Google Shopping Campaign
Google Shopping campaigns, also called product listing ads (PLA), are AdWords campaigns designed for shopping. They allow advertisers to display product images, pricing, and even special offers in listings.
Also, they show up before search ads or organic listings, which gives them a prominent spot in search results. They particularly stand out on mobile, where they cover a great part of the screen.
PLA ads are key to get your products right in front of your customers and take up a bigger portion of the results page. The key is to combine search and shopping campaigns to occupy most of the listing space—see how Shopbob accomplished this below:
And, if you rank organically, even better! You can have three consecutive listings on the first page of Google.
Advanced Tip for Shopping Campaigns
You may already be running Shopping campaigns, but are you making the most of it? Use the advanced tip below!
Prioritize & Use Negative Keywords Wisely
By assigning campaign priorities, you can tell Google which campaign to choose first, if the same products are multiple campaigns, targeting the same area. The key is to give high priorities to best sellers, finely narrowed campaigns, and new arrivals, which can provide the biggest return on investment.
Let’s say I sell Levis jean shorts, which have been added to three different campaigns in my Shopping ads: campaign 1, 2, and 3. These three campaigns were set up to attract people with different levels of intent, so I could bid higher or lower accordingly. Campaign 1 is for super targeted searches, campaign 2 for medium targeted, and campaign 3 for more general searches.
Then, using negative keywords, I can exclude keywords to the desired level of intent I’m looking to target. For instance, for campaign 1, which is meant for high intent searches, I can use negative keywords like “shorts.”
In that way, I can prevent campaign 1 ads from showing for general searches. At the same time, I would give campaign 1 a high priority to show up first. This process would be done with the rest of the campaigns, to allow higher bid flexibility and increase ROI.
2. Adjust Bids Based on Location & Device Performance
If your campaigns have enough impressions and clicks, you’ll be able to tell after a couple of weeks which locations are performing the best. This data may be key in optimizing your campaigns to bid higher for locations that are generating the lowest cost per conversion. Alternatively, you can bid lower for lower performing locations.
All you have to do to find this data is visit the “Dimensions” and select “Geographic” view from the drop-down menu.
Then you can sort the results by conversions to see the locations with the highest conversions to determine your best performers. To find your low performers, sort the view to show locations with the highest clicks and impressions.
After that, see if there are any high clicks that don’t match with conversion quantities. For instance, if you get 200 clicks from Florida, with no conversions, something may be off.
You can get more details by analyzing your search terms, but, for now, the best decision may be to lower the bid for Florida. Do this by applying a bid modifier to the specific location. Just go to the campaign, then click on Settings> Location, and click on the bid adj. column.
Similarly to how you used geographic dimensions to analyze location performance in the last point, you can also use device data to determine which device works best—desktop or mobile. You may be surprised to find out that one of them performs much better than the other.
For instance, if your mobile conversion rate is low, it may indicate that your mobile presence is not optimized. To find this data, go to settings, select Devices, and compare clicks vs. conversion rate.
3. Optimize Your Campaigns Based on Search Impression
If you’ve been running campaigns for a bit, and you’re getting results, you’re probably wondering how much more you can invest to get more conversions or how many conversions you may be losing due to performance. Search impression share and search impression lost are the metrics that can provide you an answer.
Search impression share is the impressions you’ve received divided by the number of impressions you were eligible for. This metric can help you identify how many more impressions your campaigns can get. To find out why you’re losing impressions, look at Search Lost IS (rank), and Search Lost IS (Budget). These two metrics show you the percentage of impressions being lost due to rank and budget, respectively.
So, if your Search Lost IS rank is high, you’ll need to increase your ranking by doing things like increasing your quality score. Alternatively, if your Search Lost IS budget percentage is high, you’ll need to increase your budget to avoid losing impressions.
To get these metrics, go to “customize your columns” by selecting “competitive metrics.”
4. Create a Dynamic Remarketing Campaign
Only a percentage of your website visitors will convert into customers upon visiting your store. Remarketing campaigns will allow you to target these previous visitors to encourage them to come back and make a purchase. Even if your previous visitor is already a customer, you can get him or her to come back for a repeat purchase—so it’s a win/win situation from any angle.
Even better than simple remarketing campaigns are Dynamic remarketing campaigns. They will take your retargeting to the next level by showing previous website visitors the exact products they were viewing before leaving your store. Start by creating a display-only campaign and selecting the “Buy on your Website” option.
Then, under “Additional Settings,” select “Use Dynamic Ads” and select “Retail” under business type.image: https://cdn.business2community.com/wp-content/uploads/2018/02/Retail-900×392.png
Once that’s set up, you’ll have to submit your product feed and install the remarketing tag on your site.
5. Bid on Competitor Keywords
Do you have an eCommerce store that’s an authority in your niche? You can leverage its reputation by targeting related keywords in your ads. For instance, if you notice that people are searching for Levi’s jeans, and you’re a new jeans store, you can target “levis jeans” in your campaigns to bring awareness of your brand.
Is this legal? Yes, but you have to be very careful not to violate Google’s Trademark policies. They basically state that you cannot use the trademark in your ad or confuse the user to think it is your brand. However, you can include an appealing value proposition to encourage users to click on your ad instead of clicking your competitor’s ads.
Hopefully, with these 5 tips, you can take your eCommerce store to new heights. Either you can start implementing these with new campaigns that you build, or you can check your previous campaigns to make sure they are following these tips.
In the current technological era, SEO (search engine optimization) and PPC (Pay Per Click) are two major effective marketing techniques. Business vendors from all segments have advertised their business at some point in time.
Without the help of SEO and PPC, it is very hard to promote business. Especially, at present, every company needs an online presence. Without the help of this two advanced tool, it is quite impossible. These two tools are the basic factors for the online marketers. But in some certain factor SEO is a bit different from PPC. Let’s discuss the differences below.
The difference between SEO and PPC
- SEO is one of the best ways to achieve business success with putting some extra effort. Whereas, PPC is another tool which helps to grab your targeted customer within a short span of time.
- SEO makes your business growth easier. It brings your website the topmost ranking position on search engines and will help to promote your webpage. However, PPC helps in gathering huge traffic towards your site.
- SEO is the organic way to generate better traffic and produce a good result. However, PPC is the paid way to generate heavy traffic towards your website.
- SEO is the long-term process in which you need to wait for months to get your desired result. Whereas, PPC will give you a quick result. When you pay the amount, you will get the traffic on your website within a short span of time.
- If you have a brand new website, then SEO is highly essential for your site. So for that, you can hire a reputed organization who works very hard for your website to bring you best-ranking position. Whereas, if you have a running website which is not giving you a good rate of interest. In that case, you can choose PPC to generate more traffic towards your site which brings more money and success.
What is the motive of SEO and PPC?
The main motive of both SEO and PPC are same, but the working procedures are bit different. If you hire professional SEO experts, then he will also effectively promote your product and service and work on your webpage to bring best search engine ranking. In some business, it requires applying both the methods. But before starting, it is highly essential to understand the value of both methods.
Do you think SEO is more efficient than PPC?
SEO is more efficient than PPC at some point of argument. Initially, PPC is very much effective, and it brings very good business, but it is for very short time. But SEO will give you result little later, but it works for a long time.
SEO requires little effort than PPC, but it works for a longer period. So it is the more maintainable factor to survive in the competitive market. SEO will also help you in maintaining the position in the market. This is the main reason why most of the businessmen prefer SEO rather than PPC. But you can opt for both SEO and PPC for your business. It will be a much better option.
Which tool is essential for your business?
Both of the tools are important for every business. But the SEO should be given higher points in case of beginner strategy perspectives. In every business, the start-up strategy is highly essential; if you are tensed about your start-ups, then you can go for PPC for quick promotion and fame and then later you can go for SEO which will maintain your business fame for a longer period.
Reducing the server time
If you are using WordPress website, then I am sure you are looking for how to hire professional SEO experts. For that, you must check several online tools to check the WordPress site performance. But you still did not get your desired result. Well, in that case, let me tell you that a WordPress site complete depends upon the back-end as well as front-end development that also includes hosting.
Factors responsible for slow server response
There are several factors which are truly responsible for the slow server response. Some of them are pointed below which can be easily controlled by the site owners.
- Distance between the visitors and the server
- Hosting resources
- Server software
- Dynamic vs. static
- How the Cloudways help to reduce the server response time?
- Prefer the WordPress hosting wisely
You can reduce server response time for your WordPress by following the practices mentioned above. You need to seriously work on these factors to speed up your WordPress website.
If you are an owner of WordPress website then by following certain factors you can speed up your WordPress site. To grasp the topmost business position on the famous search engines opt for SEO and PPC and achieve huge business growth and fame.
I believe artificial intelligence (AI) will be a key driver of change in PPC in 2018 as it leads to more and better PPC intelligence.
So far, I’ve discussed the roles humans will play when PPC management becomes nearly fully automated and six strategiesagencies can take to future-proof their business. In this final post on the state of AI in PPC, I’ll cover the technology of AI.
Why AI took years to matter to PPC
AI has been around since 1956, and PPC has existed since the late 1990s. So why did it take until now for AI’s role in paid search to become such a hot topic in our industry?
It’s because we’ve recently hit an inflection point where, due to the exponential nature of technological advances, we’re now seeing improvements that used to take years happen in weeks.
What’s driving this is the exponential growth explained by Moore’s Law, the principle that computing power doubles approximately every 18 months. The outcome of exponential growth is hard for humans to grasp, so let me give an example that doesn’t involve computing speeds since those can be a bit too conceptual. Instead, let’s apply this doubling of speed to cars, where we can more easily understand how it impacts the distances we travel and how quickly we get somewhere.
Imagine if the first car, invented by Karl Benz in 1885 with a top speed of about 10 mph, was doubling its speed every 18 months. In 1885, we could have driven that car across a typical town in an hour. After 27 times doubling its speed (the same number of times the microchip has doubled its speed since it was invented), we could have gone to the sun in about 4 minutes. And less than 18 months later, it would take just about 2 hours to travel to Neptune, the farthest planet in our solar system. (Voyager 2 did that same trip in about 12 years.)
Because computing speed has already doubled 27 times, every extra doubling leads to new capabilities that are beyond imagination.
What exponential growth means for PPC
So, if we’ve reached the point of PPC automation today where humans and computers are about equally good, consider that the pace of technological improvement makes it possible for the machines to leave humans in the dust later this year. That’s why it’s worth thinking about the roles humans will play in the future of PPC.
And just like the first car is not the right vehicle for a flight to Neptune, the tools you used to manage AdWords a few years ago may no longer be the ones that make sense for managing AdWords today. So let’s take a look at what AI is doing to PPC tools.
The technologies driving PPC intelligence
Just like you want to know what your employees are capable of by interviewing them before hiring them, you should understand a technology’s capabilities (and limits) before adding it to your toolkit. So let’s see how artificial intelligence works in PPC.
PPC intelligence through programmed rules
Before the advent of AI as a research field in 1956, you could make a machine appear “intelligent” by programming it to deliver specific responses to a large number of scenarios. But that form of AI is very limited because it can’t deal with edge cases, of which there are invariably many in the real world.
In PPC, this would be akin to using Automated Rules to write rules for every possible scenario an account might encounter. Rules are great for covering the majority use cases, but the real world is messy, and trying to write rules for every scenario is simply impossible.
PPC intelligence through symbolic representations
Between the 1950s and 1980s, AI evolved into using symbolic systems to be able to take heuristic shortcuts like humans do. By framing problems in human readable form, it was believed the machines could make logical deductions.
Here’s a PPC problem: you’re adding a new keyword, but you don’t know the right bid to set because there is no historical data for it. By teaching the machine concepts like campaigns and keywords and how these relate to each other, we are providing it with the same heuristics we use to make reasonable guesses.
So the system can now automate bid management and might set a similar bid to other keywords in the campaign because it knows that campaigns tend to have keywords that have something in common.
PPC intelligence through statistical learning methods
The type of AI that is responsible for a lot of success in PPC today is based on statistics and machine learning to categorize things. Quality Score (QS) is a great example; Google looks at historical click behavior from users and uses machine learning to find correlations that help predict the likelihood of a click or a conversion.
By having a score for how likely it is that each search will translate into a conversion, automated bidding products like those offered inside AdWords can “think” through many more dimensions (like geo-location, hour of day, device, or audience) that might impact the likelihood of a conversion than a person could.
Thanks to the massively increased computing power available today, these systems can also consider interactions across dimensions without getting “overwhelmed” by the combinatorial nature of the problem.
What’s next for artificial intelligence
AI systems getting a lot of attention today, like AlphaGo Zero, are no longer dependent on structured data and can become “intelligent” without being “constrained by the limits of human knowledge,” as explained by DeepMind CEO Demis Hassabis.
The team created the AlphaZero algorithm using reinforcement learning so that it could learn to win other games besides AlphaGo. They claimed that by the end of 2017, this algorithm had learned to best humans in other games like chess and shogi in less than 1 day — a huge leap forward in AI.
Reinforcement learning uses massive computing power to run lots of simulations until it starts to recognize actions that lead to desirable outcomes. It can be applied to games because there is a clear outcome of “winning” or “losing.” When Google figures out what it means to win or lose in the game of AdWords, I bet we’ll see a huge acceleration in improvements of their automation tools.
Build your own PPC intelligence
There are a lot of tools available to automate your PPC work, and multiple third-party vendors are starting to use AI and ML to provide stronger recommendations. But there are also many free tools from AdWords that are getting better every day thanks to advances in AI, like Portfolio Bid Strategies, Custom Intent Audiences, optimized ad rotation, etc.
For those willing to invest in connecting their own business data to AdWords and AI, I’m a big fan of prototyping solutions with AdWords Scripts because they provide a lot of customizability without requiring a lot of engineering resources. Unfortunately, simple scripts you write will fall into the weakest category of AI, where PPC intelligence is achieved through hard-coded rules.
But when you get a bit more advanced in your scripting abilities, you can use Google Cloud Machine Learning Engine to start enhancing your own automations with modern machine learning techniques.
The benefit of an out-of-the box solution like this is that you don’t need to learn many types of different models. But that’s also the downside because you won’t get total control over how you set criteria and thresholds to get results that are usable. Our team at Optmyzr tried several ready-made systems but eventually decided that we needed more power — so we’re building our own AI.
I believe there are three pillars for being a successful PPC marketer in a world where AI takes over and I’ve now touched on each pillar in my recent posts:
- Be ready for the new roles humans will play.
- Have a plan for your business, and especially focus on having the best process for leveraging AI.
- Understand the technology so you can spot opportunities faster.
Over the coming months, I will share my own experiences with AI so advertisers ready to take the plunge will have a better understanding of what is involved in building successful companies that leverage the latest state of the art in technology, computation, and statistics.
Pay-per-click is a term that all Marketers are used to hearing and while it’s widely accepted as a great way to promote your business, how much do we actually know about it? The world of online marketing can get a little overwhelming, that’s why, we’re asking what are the advantages of a pay-per-click campaign and when is it beneficial to use one?
PPC advertising will deliver immediate results. In fact, the minute your campaign is approved your ads can be viewed by millions of web users. The capacity to launch a campaign quickly and ensuring it reaches your market instantly makes PPC ideal for product launches, seasonal promotions and event-focused marketing.
Take advantage of business opportunities
As it is so quick and easy to launch a PPC campaign you can really use them to your businesses advantage. Is your competitor’s website down? Have they been experiencing some bad press? No problem, you can have your campaign set up in a matter of minutes and their customers may just come running to you. When you’re in a race against time the efficiency and immediacy of PPC can really be on your side.
Track the success
Everything about pay-per-click is measurable, from the amount that you’re paying to the number of hits your website receives. This makes it a useful tool for testing different campaigns, strategies or landing pages allowing you to evaluate which are the most responsive and the best option for your business. PPC isn’t just a way to drive traffic to your site, but a way to understand exactly what your customers are looking for. It’s also very handy to have a tight budget as pay-per-click can get a little pricey when your post proves popular. The more clicks, the more it costs. By measuring the CTR you can stop the campaign before it gets too expensive.
Ensures exposure and brand recognition
PPC allows you to target specific keywords related to your industry which will help to build your brand image and establish yourself as an industry leader. This will also increase your exposure, as PPC ads are usually posted at the top of search engine results pages (depending on how much you pay) which can immediately boost the traffic of your website. On average, 41% of all clicks go to the top 3 paid ads on the search results page, if you aren’t using PPC then you’re losing those clicks to competitors that are. If you’re determined to maximise your click-share of searches for keywords relevant to your business, PPC is essential.
Highly targeted website traffic
Reaching the right audience can always be difficult, yet PPC allows you to target very specific groups. You can also choose when these ads appear which really allows you to segment your market, making sure you’re only reaching the people that will benefit your business. And being picky clearly pays off, PPC visitors are 50% more likely to purchase something than organic visitors.
Initially with PPC you only need to make a small investment, one of the biggest advantages of using a pay-per-click campaign is that there can be no charge until someone clicks on your ad. You decide how much you pay for each campaign making it suitable for all budgets, although the more you pay the greater your potential results.
You don’t have to be SEO reliant
If you aren’t the savviest in terms of SEO then pay-per-click is perfect for you. Although SEO is essential for your brand’s long-term success, this method will allow you to make profitable short-term campaigns at the touch of a button. Similarly, if your website isn’t designed for SEO you can generate traffic through PPC and won’t have to worry about meeting Google’s content-heavy criteria.
Read more at https://www.business2community.com/marketing/ppc-advantages-pay-per-click-marketing-explained-01959416
Are your AdWords campaigns working… like, really working?
That might be a surprisingly hard question to answer. Anybody with an AdWords account can see if they’re getting clicks, and it’s not too hard to set up conversion tracking — but chances are that the reason you put money into AdWords was that you wanted to get money out.
In other words, you want your ad spend to produce sales.
As obvious as this statement is, actually determining how different factors in your AdWords campaigns affect sales can be fairly difficult. To try to shed more light on the subject, we recently conducted a study on how different variables affect ad performance at Disruptive Advertising (my company). We pulled data from well over half a million keywords and measured return-on-investment against dozens of variables.
In short, we wanted to answer the question: What predicts profitability in an AdWords account? Our findings may surprise you.
1. High CPC = low profitability
With any pay-per-click platform, the more clicks cost, the less profit you’ll make. However, many businesses are quick to argue that if a new sale is worth enough, it’s worth it to bid on keywords with expensive CPCs.
But do things actually work out that way?
In our study, we found that ROI rapidly drops off as your cost-per-click (CPC) increases. For example, take a look at data we pulled from a variety of e-commerce companies:
Now, for these companies, a sale was worth anywhere from tens to thousands of dollars, so you’d think that at least some of their keywords would perform well at a higher CPC. But it didn’t work out that way.
Even for expensive products, higher CPCs were directly linked to low ROI, to the point where paying more than $5 for an e-commerce click is like saying, “No, I don’t want to make money on this product.”
2. Long-tail keywords are a waste of money
Based on the above findings, it seems like long-tail keywords would be the way to go. After all, the longer the keyword, the less competition there is and the cheaper the click will be.
However, that only works up to a point.
When we looked at how keyword length affected ROI, we found that the most profitable keywords typically had 15 to 30 characters.
If you think about it, these findings make sense. Below 15 characters, you face one of two problems:
- The keyword is too non-specific and produces low-quality clicks, or
- The keyword has good volume and intent but is way too competitive.
Above 30 characters (and especially above 40 characters), the searches are usually incredibly specific and have low conversion intent. For example, we once saw an AdWords account that had received 127 clicks from the search term “how do I remove the terrible smell from carpet that has been flooded using household ingredients.”
Despite all these clicks, this search term had never produced a single conversion. Why? Well, people who bother to type in a 96-character search term like this are usually looking for a very specific answer — the kind that you get on a forum or answer board, not a landing page.
3. More clicks don’t mean more conversions
If you have a conversion rate (CR) of 5 percent and a click-through rate (CTR) of 5 percent for a given ad, it’s easy to assume that doubling your CTR will double your conversions. While that may be true in some situations, as a general rule, increasing your CTR actually tends to decrease your conversion rate.
Yes, you read that right.
In our study, higher CTRs were typically associated with lower conversion rates. Let’s take another look at that e-commerce data we were talking about earlier.
(Note: Since this is e-commerce, a single click sometimes leads to multiple sales, which is why a good chunk of our conversion rates fall above the 100 percent mark.)
As you can see in the graph above, as CTR improves, the conversion rate plummets. But why? Since people only click on ads that they think match their intent, wouldn’t a higher CTR lead to a higher conversion rate?
Unfortunately, that only happens if you are targeting the right audience with the right message. In many cases, CTR improves because you are targeting the wrong audience with the wrong message (or at least an unclear message). As a result, they think they’ve found what they’re looking for, only to end up on your landing page and discover that your business isn’t what they really want.
4. There is no silver bullet
Sadly, this is where the clear data ends. Although AdWords experts love to say, “Pull this lever and you’ll make more money,” it doesn’t work out that way in practice.
For example, let’s take a look at how well click conversion rate (percentage of clicks that convert at least once) predicts ROI:
At first glance, this graph looks great! I mean, look at that trend line. Clearly, the higher your conversion rate, the more profitable your campaigns will be, right?
While this graph looks compelling, there’s a problem. If you take a close look at the graph, it’s pretty clear that the dots don’t really follow the line. In other words, the trend line doesn’t do a very good job of predicting real-life results.
In statistics, we describe how well a trend line fits the data using R2 (R squared). In the case of the graph above, the R2 value is 0.31, which essentially means that the trend line is only accurate about 31 percent of the time.
In our study, we found that the best predictors of ROI were the amount of time spent on a page and the number of pages visited. That’s kind of a no-brainer — if you’re converting, you’re going to spend more time on the site and visit more pages. But it’s hard to use that data to improve campaign performance. After all, forcing someone to visit more pages and spend more time on your site isn’t likely to get them to convert.
But what about all the other metrics we love to watch? How does modifying those metrics affect ROI?
As you can see above, the very best predictors of ROI are CTR and CPC. But even those factors only have R2 values of 0.27 and 0.19, respectively. A 27 percent and 19 percent success rate aren’t exactly the kind of wins you want to wager money on.
Now, that being said, these numbers are based on our whole data set. When you group companies with a $0.25 CPC and a $10 product with companies with a $25 CPC and a $1,000 product, your data are not going to be very consistent.
So, let’s try to simplify things. Instead of looking at our whole data set, let’s look at the R2 values for e-commerce keywords with very similar CPCs and see if that provides any additional clarity:
In this chart, I’ve assigned bronze, silver and gold medals to the top predictive factors in each CPC range. As you can see, hashing out the data in this way does improve the predictive value of each of these factors, but our best performer is still only accurate about 50% of the time.
So, regardless of what you may read out there, there is no “silver bullet” for AdWords performance. Improving your CTR, ad position or conversion rate might improve your ROI, but it’s a shot in the dark.
Really, when you get right down to it, every business and market audience is unique, which means that the only true “silver bullet” may be blood, sweat and tears. That being said, these data may be a bit of a relief to you.
After all, if improving these metrics doesn’t reliably improve ROI, that means you can spend less time worrying about your CTR and more time identifying new, creative ways to reach and influence your target audience. If you’re focused on creating profitable ads and campaigns, rather than improving surface metrics like bounce rate, you’ll probably end up with better results.