Earlier this year, Facebook broke some bad news. Organic reach is officially being choked, making it harder for brands to reach the audiences they’ve worked so hard to build.
Because of this, I believe marketers will look to SEM (search engine marketing) to recapture lost attention. The problem is, there’s already so much competition. How do you get past the noise and generate PPC (pay per click) results, and which KPIs (key performance indicators) should you be tracking to measure success?
Optimizing conversion rate (CVR) is one of the fastest ways to improve AdWords efficiency. It allows you to test new approaches and boost ROI without having to expand target keywords, campaigns or budget.
Here are five approaches to PPC that will help you generate more conversions and better results in 2018 and beyond.
1. Optimize keyword quality score
Google’s entire business model relies on providing searchers with relevant results. This goes for organic results as well as AdWords.
To do this, Google assigns your target keywords a Quality Score (QS). This QS, along with your CPC (cost per click) bid, is what then determines your “Ad Rank.”
The three elements that determine your QS are:
- Ad relevance (in other words, how relevant the keyword is to the ad copy you serve).
- Landing page experience.
- Expected CTR (click-through rate).
Many PPC experts consider CTR the most important factor when determining QS. Therefore, when looking to optimize your QS, start with CTR.
Analyze the keyword relevancy of your campaigns. Is your ad copy aligned with the search intent of the keyword?
It’s good practice to create separate Ad Groups for each of your keywords. Also known as Single Keyword Ad Groups, this is where you cater to the intent of specific searchers rather than a larger group.
In the example below (courtesy of ConversionXL), ASDA is the only advertiser for the term “womens red dresses” with copy tailored to that search term.
As well as relevancy, your ad copy should quickly sell the benefits of the “click.” In other words, why should the searcher pay attention? Make your headlines relevant, focusing on the desires and pain points of your audience.
By optimizing CTR, and therefore quality score, you’ll generate more qualified traffic. And high-quality traffic delivers better conversion rates.
Once you’ve optimized CTR, your landing pages should be the next target. Dynamic text replacement (DTR) can provide some quick wins. This “swaps” specific copy in your landing page based on the keyword the user searched to find you. DTR can improve quality score and therefore contribute to a higher CVR.
2. Intelligent remarketing
When it comes to AdWords, high bounce rates are a fact of life. Users who come to your landing pages are at various stages of the customer journey. For example, a call-to-action (CTA) for a demo won’t work on a searcher who is still educating themselves on different solutions.
To capture these missed opportunities, use remarketing to cross-sell and “down-sell” bounced visitors. Let’s start by expanding on the example above. If you’re offering a demo of your software to someone who is still in the awareness phase, this approach won’t be as effective as something that answers their questions.
Therefore, an e-book that teaches prospects how to overcome specific challenges is an appropriate down-sell. It would educate them on the options available to them while providing information about how your product makes the process easier.
Of course, these challenges will vary depending on personas and customer segments. Therefore, you must personalize your ad creative where necessary.
Retargeting in this way allows you to capture lead information that would have been otherwise lost, boosting the CVR and overall ROI of your campaigns. The mistake many marketers make here is to “re-sell” the demo request. Use it as an opportunity to educate them and add more value instead of forcing them further down the funnel.
Here are some tips you can apply to your remarketing ads to capture the attention of lost leads:
- Test different lead magnets: Different personas and customer types respond to different forms of media. Split-test your remarketing ads to offer an e-book and webinar. See which generates the highest conversions and double down on those formats.
- Name-drop influencers: If you work with well-known influencers in your space, consider including them in your remarketing ads. This association adds an element of trust like no other.
- Use dynamic targeting: Serve specific ads to different audience segments. More on this later.
The point of remarketing is to capture lost users and retain customers. Don’t waste the opportunity by serving the same messaging. Look for ways to add value up and down the funnel.
3. Tap into the power of machine learning
AI and machine learning bring the promise of higher-performing marketing at speed. From an AdWords perspective, this would mean automated bid and budget management, using more data than a human can handle to make adjustments in real time.
To find out exactly what impact machine learning has on PPC performance, we analyzed 32,858 paid accounts using the Acquisio Turing platform to uncover the truth. Here’s what we found out about conversions and machine learning:
- An average increase in conversions of 71 percent.
- A median increase in conversions of 22 percent.
Discussions of landing page quality aside, the huge difference between average and median is explained by the fact that a certain number of accounts saw extremely high increases in number of conversions, which skews the average in a meaningful way. If we wished to exclude those extremes from the discussion, we would look at the median score, which tells us the percent increase in conversions that was observed for the 50th percentile.
The plot thickened because this increase in conversions came with an overall decrease in cost per acquisition (CPA). In fact, the median CPA had a decrease of 18 percent, with 64 percent of the group enjoying a decrease in CPA overall.
While the report above focused on the increase in conversions made possible by machine learning, our most recent study examined 50,000 campaigns to determine Google AdWords Industry Benchmarks and looked at conversion rate (CVR) with and without machine learning by industry. Here are the CVR findings segmented by business category:
Conversion rate (CVR) by industry with and without machine learning
Machine learning martech helps PPC marketers scale and optimize marketing activities efficiently, but it’s also a serious contender for conversion boosts.
Here’s the thing: Machine learning technologies get better the more they learn. In other words, results will improve as machine learning algorithms react to new findings. Check out The Marketer’s Field Guide to Machine Learning for more information.
4. Test new ad extensions
To cut through the noise, you must capture as much SERP (search engine results page) real estate as possible. This means not only standing out with your creative but also expanding how much room your ads take up.
To do this, test different ad extensions on your top-performing campaigns. Ad extensions, as defined by Google, “expand your ad with additional information — giving people more reasons to choose your business. They typically increase an ad’s click-through rate by several percentage points.”
Ad extensions come in several forms, the most popular of which are:
- Sitelink Extensions: Provide links to other relevant pages on your website.
- Callout Extensions: Additional information on what you’re offering, e.g., limited stock and free delivery.
- Structured Snippets: Allows you to highlight specific elements. For example, if you’re selling “Italian vegan leather boots,” you can include a list of shoe sizes.
- Location Extensions: Include your business address and telephone number in your ad copy.
As you’re well aware, mobile user behavior is very different from desktop users’. Indeed, 61.9 percent of all PPC clicks were from a smartphone during Q3 of 2017.
Google has reacted to this shift in behavior by adding additional extensions for ads that appear on mobile devices. These are:
- Message Extensions: Allow users to send an SMS to your business directly from the SERPs.
- Call Extensions: Similarly, users can dial a phone number provided within your ad copy.
As always, test different extensions on a small scale before applying them to all of your campaigns. Keep the customer’s journey and intent in mind. Are they searching for a term with several possible outcomes? Consider using a Sitelink extension. Does it look like they’re searching for your retail store on a mobile phone? Include mobile extensions.
5. Advanced segmentation with in-market audiences
Facebook Ads are popular among marketers due to the advanced targeting available. But many are still unaware of AdWords’ functionality to do the same.
Google collects a tremendous amount of data on their users. So it was only a matter of time before they allowed marketers to use it themselves.
That’s where in-market audiences come in. By using in-market audiences within your display ads targeting, you can target users based on their consumer behavior, as well as the content they have expressed an interest in online.
The data available is sorted into several market categories, including real estate, travel and telecommunication. You can then set targeting on a granular level, all the way down to specific interests and brand names:
So, how does it work? According to Google, data such as sites browsed, the proximity of visits, relevant ads clicked and conversions are all taken into account to categorize users by intent.
This means that, while this is limited to the Display network only, you’re able to serve hyper-specific ads to those who have expressed an interest. From persona segments to product categories, the options are many.
Quality score is a complex metric because it is a basic but fundamental component of ad rank.
Optimizing for quality score is a best practice, except when it isn’t. A high quality score is a sign of account health, except when it isn’t. Like any other paid search “best practice,” it is only a best practice when it works in your favor.
Because quality score is a fundamental element of an account and has been widely written about, it is a focal point for many advertisers. While some of that is fair, some of the attention it receives is unnecessary.
More than a few people have reached out and asked how quality score can be improved in their account. My first inclination is to suggest they first ensure that a quality score improvement is going to help drive them closer to the business goals they hope to achieve.
The reality is that spending a lot of time and capital on increasing quality score doesn’t always pay off, as you will soon see.
Tie your account goals to business goals
To determine if something is “working,” you have to know whether or not it is contributing toward your goals. This is where things can get a little sticky.
Sometimes when I speak with people, increasing their quality score is their goal. If that’s the case, there may be a good reason — but I’d ask the account owner to dig into:
- What they ultimately hope to achieve with their AdWords account.
- Why it is that they want to increase quality score. Typically, the resulting answer to this question is something along the lines of “Because it’s a best practice.” Do you see where I’m going with this? I think this is the human version of Excel’s circular reference.
So let’s back up. Let’s step outside of the pay-per-click (PPC) account for a second and talk about business goals. Once those are written down, then we will write down PPC goals that support each of those.
Business goals are almost always something like: generate X number of leads at an acceptable cost, generate sales at X percent return on investment (ROI) or calculating return on ad spend (ROAS), and contribute to $X in revenue.
Quality score could possibly support one of the PPC goals, but there’s almost never a situation where it is a goal on its own because there is almost never a situation where it is a direct link to a corporate goal. I know. I said it. And I mean it! (Honestly, I can’t think of a single one.)
What you can learn from quality score
There are a lot of great insights that can be learned from quality score, most obviously:
- Landing page experience.
- Expected click-through rate.
Each item listed is important, even at the surface level, but, there’s more than meets the eye with these metrics. If your quality score is suffering due to relevance and your click-through rate still seems to suffer, there could be a deeper issue at play.
For example, it could be that the keywords you’ve chosen are too broad or don’t show enough intent and are being matched with queries that aren’t really the best fit.
This is pretty easy to dig into: Just look into the search terms report and make sure the terms are a good fit for your products and services. If there are just a few misses, it could be solved with negatives, but if the problem is widespread, you may want to rethink your keyword strategy.
When quality score matters
Quality score is an important metric, and it should still be evaluated as a potential optimization opportunity. For example, if one of your highest conversion-generating keywords has a low quality score, it would be reasonable to assume improving the quality score could improve the average cost per acquisition (CPA) on a high volume of conversions. That would be well worth your while!
On the opposite end of the spectrum, you might find quality score so low it is impossible for a keyword to get any traction. It can be worthwhile to focus efforts on those terms, which could result in expanded reach.
In addition, if you find there seems to be a quality score issue at scale (click-through rate, for instance), that might indicate an area of opportunity that could have a wide-reaching positive impact without a high level of effort.
There are times quality score optimizations can have a real, substantial impact, it just isn’t safe to assume that is always the case.
When quality score can be detrimental
Quality score is pretty well refined, too. The search engines have spent a lot of time improving quality score, the supporting factors and providing insight into areas in which advertisers can improve.
However, that said, it isn’t perfect. Although the cues quality score looks for are good indicators, there are times they can be counterintuitive. While you may be marching toward an increase in quality score, you could be marching away from more important performance metrics.
There are a few ways this can happen, even with the best of intentions. Here’s one: Ads with dynamic keyword insertion (DKI) often show increases in click-through rate over those ads that don’t have DKI, but that doesn’t always mean the ad is better quality.
Although the click-through rate (CTR) may increase, conversions may not. At that point, if you were basing your performance purely on CTR and quality score, it would be considered a win. However, if you were basing your results on performance against business goals, an increased cost per lead with no increase in conversions wouldn’t be considered a win.
This is just one example of many where making an increase in quality score your primary goal can come to the detriment of more important performance indicators.
Should that scare you away from making quality score optimizations when needed? No! It should only serve to illustrate why quality score shouldn’t be the primary account goal.
When optimizing for quality score isn’t the best use of time
There are times quality score optimizations just aren’t likely to have a worthwhile impact on your keyword’s performance. For example, if your keyword meets any of the following criteria, quality score optimizations aren’t likely to have a big impact:
- If the keyword is low-volume for any reason aside from quality score.
- If the keyword is already getting a decent amount of traffic that doesn’t convert well. There may be other optimizations that could help solve this, but quality score isn’t likely the best starting point.
- The keyword already has a relatively high quality score, even if not a full 10.
To optimize or not to optimize
The goal of this post wasn’t to suggest no one should ever optimize for quality score — in fact, you should! But, at some point, you will likely have to prioritize some account optimization efforts over others, and your quality score optimizations should be prioritized based on their likelihood to impact your account and business goals.
As we’ve seen from my examples above, there are times optimizing for quality score can come at the expense of other key performance indicators, which becomes an unjustifiable risk.
The most important thing is to always benchmark your performance against relevance, landing page experience and expected click-through rate as they apply to your business. Any optimization made to improve quality score should do just that, but without taking away from your primary goal.
Initiating a new Google AdWords campaign is exciting, whether you’re running a small campaign or a large one. To run a successful campaign, follow these seven steps.
Businesses are extremely effective when it comes to driving qualified and relevant traffic to your website – especially when people type in specific keywords related to your business.
What are Google ads?
Google offers businesses the opportunity to advertise on their search pages. This is Google’s exclusive advertising platform where advertisers bid on specific keywords in order for their ads to appear in the search results when people type them in.
Since advertisers pay for these clicks, Google makes money from these campaigns – known as pay-per-click (PPC) campaigns. Depending on the relevancy of the keywords to conversions for your business (and the competitiveness of the keywords), this type of campaign may need to be tweaked to suit your specific needs, ensuring that you don’t spend money on the wrong content and keywords.
How do Google ads appear?
Google ads typically appear once an auction is completely focused on specific keywords. How do Google ads appear?
- Advertisers choose a list of words and phrases relevant to their business based on the terms people are most likely to use when searching for related products and services.
- Advertisers then bid on these keywords covering how much they are willing to pay for users to click on their ads.
- Google combines a quality score along with the bid to determine which ads appear on the search engine.
- Once the user clicks on your ad, you will need to pay a specific cost based on Google’s cost per click for that particular ad.
AdWords typically work on an auction system. This system takes place during every keyword search undertaken by users.
What affects a quality score on Google?
In order to win AdWords on Google and have your ad appear in relation to specific keywords, you’ll need to ensure that your quality score is high. A higher score and good bid amount will put you in a better position to get your ad placed on a Google SERP. The following factors make a difference to your quality score:
- Relevance of the search query to your Google ad and ad group
- Relevance of your ad to your landing page
- Historical data covering the click-through rate for the ad and ad group
- Historical account performance
What are the benefits of a higher quality score on Google?
Apart from getting your ad placed for certain keywords, there are additional benefits for your business if you have a higher quality score, such as:
- Lower costs. Google tends to reward advertisers who have high quality scores in the form of lower costs per click, which ultimately helps enhance their return on investment.
- Greater exposure. With higher quality scores, you will notice your ads displaying more often in the search engine and in more prominent positions than others, which enables you to get more conversions and clicks without having to change your bid.
Businesses looking to build successful ad campaigns on Google should always try to get a higher quality score for their long-term benefits.
How to make your Google Ad campaign successful
Certain actions will help make your Google ad campaign more successful, so make sure you follow them in your quest to build the online reputation of your business.
Keep track of customer demand
One of the key ingredients of a successful Google ad campaign is customer demand. If people aren’t searching for relevant products and services, then your efforts in Google are hardly going to work. Before starting any online campaign, check the following:
- Ensure adequate search volume to target the market you’re going after
- Research what consumers are looking for and tailor your ad solutions accordingly
- Create products and services that are in demand.
Once you’re able to keep track of customer demand, you’ll be in a better position to deliver a successful Google ad campaign.
Always have a clear goal in mind
Any SEM campaign must have a goal and the desired outcome in mind in order to be successful. You will likely run an AdWords campaign in your quest to grow sales or win followers for your business, in addition to creating more brand awareness. Consider the following:
- What is the outcome you’re looking to achieve from your ad campaign?
- Who are you looking to target?
- What kind of keywords are being searched for that may be relevant to your business?
- How can you make your ad relevant to the keywords typed into the search engine?
- What action do you want to drive for readers?
You must always be aware of the specific call to action you are trying to get your targets to perform so that you can create a clear ad campaign that directly reflects your goals. Never go live with any campaign until you’ve identified your goals clearly and know what you need to measure results.
Write for your target customer
Any ad you write must be relevant to your specific target audience, so your tone, language and call to action must be adjusted accordingly. What do your ads need to do for your target?
- Attract attention with the right tone and context
- Raise customer interest
- Convince customers to perform your desired call to action
- Lead customers into taking that action
When you write ads that resonate with your target audience, your ad campaign will have stronger results.
Be clear with your keyword targeting
When you implement an ad campaign, you should have all types of keyword targeting included in your overall strategy for the best results. Your keyword targeting strategy should include:
- Broad match. Google shows your ad when a similar phrase or keyword is used but has a higher chance of irrelevant traffic being driven to your website. You should ideally bid lowest for broad match keywords.
- Phrase match. Google displays your ad when a user types in the specific phrase your ad is optimized for, giving you more control over who sees your ad. Bid a higher amount than broad match keywords.
- Exact match. Google will only display your ad when the user types in the exact keyword or keyword phrase, which is why this gives you the most control over who sees your ad and has the least bounce rate. If possible, bid the highest for exact match keywords.
Keep your ad groups separate according to keyword type in order to ensure the campaign remains well organized.
Create a strong selling proposition
Having a clear and unique selling proposition is key when you’re looking to cut through the clutter and come up on top with your Google AdWords campaign. Customers should be well aware of why they are choosing you over your competition, which is why you need to have a strong unique selling proposition. Here are some benefits to creating a strong selling proposition:
- A strong USP generates more traffic while keeping away unwanted leads – ensuring more quality leads to your website.
- It boosts conversion rates.
- It can reduce the time customers spend on price comparisons, especially if you’re offering something unique.
The best way to create a strong USP is to understand your customers more intimately, so you solve problems and give them what want. When you pay attention to their shopping behavior and patterns, you’re in a better position to create something that adds value to their needs.
Optimize your Google AdWords campaign
You can never create the perfect AdWords campaign from the start. So you will need to optimize it midway to ensure that you’re getting the best results. Consider the following:
- Keyword bids. From the time you start generating clicks to your website, you should consider optimizing your keyword bids. You can raise the bid for keywords bringing in good sales. If the keywords are not generating the results you want, lower the bids or switch to other keywords.
- Landing page conversion rates. Landing pages should always offer what is being promised in the ad or else you run the risk of the customer bouncing off. Landing pages that stick to the ad content usually result in higher conversion rates and greater profit for the brand.
- Click-through rates. Any quality score for a website is determined directly by the click-through rate of a particular Google ad. Test different campaigns simultaneously, if possible, to see which ones get you the most number of clicks.
Once you’re able to optimize your Google AdWords campaign, you’ll start to see greater traction for your desired call to action – which, in turn, is beneficial for your business in the long haul.
Be aware of what your competition is up to
Knowledge of what your competition is up to will help you make more informed decisions about your specific Google Adwords campaign. Here’s what you need to know:
- Use keywords your direct competition is optimizing for
- Create call to actions that generate the best results from your target audience
- Thoroughly examine the look and feel of landing pages
Once you have knowledge of these factors, you can optimize your Adwords campaign effectively to ensure that it is structured and well organized.
Effective Google Adwords campaigns can help you boost the profitability of your business, but you must build them around powerful concepts in order to be successful. Consider working with online marketing experts who can help you take your business to the next level.
This Thanksgiving, you’ll probably hear someone say that the chemical tryptophan that’s found in turkey makes them sleepy. Although this holiday delicacy does include an amino acid that can help you relax, it’s not the only food that contains tryptophan. Cheddar cheese has a lot more of the chemical than turkey, but you never hear
your aunt saying she needs a nap after eating a grilled cheese.
According to experts, turkey doesn’t make you crave a post-Thanksgiving nap. Instead, the high amount of carbs, the general size of your meal and an increase in alcohol consumption are what cause you to doze off after dinner.
What does this have to do with PPC, though, you may wonder? Well, surprisingly a lot. In the world of paid digital marketing, there are three PPC myths that you’re mistakenly falling for. You, and nearly everyone else, take these myths as fact—like the idea that your holiday bird makes you crave some shut eye—but they’re not.
It’s time to put an end to the most alluring PPC myths, misconceptions and inaccuracies.
1) PPC is a set-it-and-forget-it tool
Starting a new PPC campaign is often a time-consuming process. Your company needs to determine what copy you’ll use, the best image for your message and then you need to launch and monitor the campaign.
At first, the time you put into your campaign seems necessary and helpful. However, once it’s been running fairly successfully for a period of time, it’s easy to forget. It’s normal to get distracted by other channels and projects and neglect to update and check on your PPC campaign.
Unfortunately, this is a huge mistake. Companies think they can just set up their PPC accounts and forget them, but this couldn’t be further from the truth.
The entire time a PPC campaign is running, you should be looking for optimization opportunities. Could your copy benefit from a little more creativity? Would a/b testing help you secure better results? There’s a lot of untapped potential when it comes to updating and improving your PPC campaigns.
According to Rory Witt, owner of San Diego-based digital marketing agency DigiMar, one of the best ways to increase a PPC campaign’s success is simple—use your audience list and remarket to your existing customers.
Says Witt, “To get started with this technique, look no further than Google’s Remarketing. This option enables you to show ads to people who’ve visited your website or used your mobile application. After they abandon your site or app, remarketing will help you reconnect with them by showing them your advertisements across their devices.”
For example, say you own a pet boutique. You run an awesome advertisement for winter dog jackets, and it has a lot of success. Instead of letting the revenue increase end there, follow up with the people who purchased a dog jacket from you and offer them dog booties or other seasonal dog apparel items.
2) PPC = short-term; SEO = long-term
Many people mistakenly think PPC is a short-term strategy. They want to inform customers about a sale or other time-dependent event, so they advertise. If their ad gets 30 clicks at $2 each, they simply want to ensure that they receive one or more $60 sales as a result. Some businesses will even stop running their PPC campaigns if they’re breaking even—but this can be a big mistake.
Although PPC can increase your revenue overnight, it’s not a short-term tool. To stick with the Thanksgiving theme, pretend you’re a honey baked ham retailer. Each one of your hams sells for $100. You run a PPC campaign this holiday season, and you break even. Every customer that results from your digital marketing efforts has a $100 cost per acquisition, and each one buys one ham from you.
You could look at these results and deduce that your PPC campaign was a waste of your time, but it may not be … If you have sound customer relationship management techniques in place, this campaign could turn into a goldmine for you.
In 10 months, you can send an email out to the campaign’s customers. Remind them that it’s time to buy another honey baked ham, and then offer them a discount or incentivize them to make another purchase. Convince customers that it’s worth their while to buy a ham for themselves and an additional ham as a gift. Before long, you’ll become the go-to vendor for individual and gift-giving holiday hams.
3) Money is the ‘be-all’
There’s a common myth that suggests you will rank better if you spend more money on your advertisements. If only it were this simple … Having a bigger budget doesn’t necessarily ensure your rank will improve.
According to Matthew Tyson, marketing strategist for WideNet, “The success of your ads is determined by multiple factors—such as relevance, targeting, and quality score.” If you want to give Google more money, it may improve your relationship to an extent. Their business is publicly traded, so of course they want to make money. However, at the end of the day, the platform needs user trust, too. If your advertisement takes Google users to irrelevant or harmful content, it’s not worth the money.
To ensure that Google is making its shareholders happy and maintaining user trust, they assign advertisements a Quality Score. This is where things get good for advertisers … If you can design ads that help Google’s business objectives, you’ll be rewarded—monetarily. Google will actually provide you with a lower cost-per-click rate if your advertisements gives them money and keeps their users happy.
It’s easy to confuse money with success. When it comes to paid advertising, money is important, but it’s not everything. Your company needs to think about a campaign’s relevance, quality score, targeting and much more in addition to its financial backing.
Don’t rush to conclusions
The human mind likes to know where things come from. It loves tales, stories and simple explanations. Humans remember and share myths, origins and creations.
To an extent, these preferences are harmless. After all, isn’t it fun to take a big winter’s snooze after November 23 and blame it all on something you ate? Of course it is! Myths are all fun and games, until they cause a detrimental result—like decreasing your company’s bottom line.
If you want to stay on the enjoyable and laughable side of myths, remember the three PPC misconceptions above. When they come up, remind yourself that they’re not based in reality, and steer your company in another direction.
Marketing comes in different forms and it is usually with the purpose of advertising a product, brand or service. In this article, we will discuss one of those forms, namely: Google AdWords
What is AdWords?
AdWords is a system of marketing products and services on Google’s search engine and all Google-affiliated sites. It involves using text advertisement that shows up when words related to your product or service are entered into the search engine.
You have the power to determine where the ad will be seen by using paid search and the higher you pay per click, the more likely that you have your ad appear more – although this requires bidding against other marketers. Pay Per Click (PPC) simply means you only pay what you budgeted for advertising when someone clicks on your ad.
How It Works
There some elements that are key to maximizing Google AdWords and these are:
This is a score that is accessed by how relevant your ad is to the one searching and it shows how well your keywords respond to a search typed into the search engine. It is the likelihood of your ad getting clicked which determines the quality score and this also includes your landing page usefulness and how often your page was visited.
The quality score carries a lot of power in determining whether your ad appears first before the other competitors, regardless of the bid results. It is important to note that the higher your quality score, the lower your cost.
The two options available for bidding on Google AdWords are:
Cost per Click (CPC) or Pay per Click (PPC)
This is the price you are willing to pay for a click on your advertisement; it is called Cost Per Click (CPC) or Pay Per Click (PPC). It is the most common method and it is within range of the budget for your CPC or PPC that Google uses to bring the maximum click you can get.
Cost per Impression (CPM)
In this case, you pay for every 1000 times your ad appears on the search result page (SERP) and has nothing to do with whether your ad was clicked or not.
What goes on behind the scenes from when the search is keyed in is that, an auction is held by Google AdWords and the ad with the highest bid and quality score is picked as the top ad which will be featured on the search page result all under 0.26 seconds
What you bid is not usually what you pay – what you pay is determined by the AdRank of the competitor lower than yours. So, actual Cost Per Click equals competitor AdRank, divided by your quality score.
How It Targets
For every product or service, there is a target market, so your advertising should be able to reach your targeted audience and communicate with them in a way that they will understand. Google AdWords enables you to use targeting methods that will determine where your ads will appear.
- Keyword targeting: Your ad will show only when certain keywords you have chosen are entered into the search engine.
- Device targeting: You may want to be more specific on how and where your adverts show up by choosing a certain type of device, time of the day, etc.
- Location and language targeting: This targets a particular race or location, depending on the geographical setting and language of your customers.
- Audience targeting: This targets people that have particular interests as they browse through the net on different apps; pick from the Affinity audience or In-market audience.
- Placement targeting: This requires picking the websites you want your ad to feature – websites your customers visit, or one that holds complimentary or contrasting services to yours.
- Topic targeting: With this, you target your ad on pages that are about certain topics selected by you.
- Remarketing: This allows you to target your ad towards people who have interacted with your business or websites before.
Steps to Add Targeting Methods
- Go to ‘Display Network’ found under ‘All campaign’
- Click ‘add targeting’ where you can choose your target method stated above
- Simply close to save your ad group
There are two options as well that must be set for each target method you choose and they are:
Target and Bid
Your advertisement only shows the target method you have chosen and you can only bid for each targeting method.
You are not restricted to your chosen target method, but you can only set bids for individual targeting.
It is important that you maximize your Google AdWords account by ensuring you create a highly targeted Ad group and be strategic with your bidding.
You are free to combine as many target methods that works for your products and services and depending on your setting, you are able to have your ad show on Google affiliate sites.
Google AdWords management may be helpful and necessary if you are still not sure on all the methods, target groups and strategies you need to engage, see Matter for transparent with AdWords management. You have the power to increase your sales and get your brand out there, so make use Google AdWords today.
Structuring campaigns based on personas is can effective, but what happens when you have keyword overlap that dilutes your messaging?
Keywords and search queries can mean different things to different people. That’s where intent comes in. You might, for example, have one keyword that serves multiple personas.
So the work that you need to do to qualify those leads in a PPC environment typically happens at the ad creative and landing page level, not necessarily with the PPC campaign structure.
My agency recently inherited a PPC account that was building campaigns based on personas, and the strategy didn’t prove itself. (By the way, if you’re interested in the cabinet of curiosities we discovered when we got into the account, check out my column from last month.)
Using this account as a case study, I’ll share with you some important lessons on understanding keywords, what to do when they serve more than one audience type in PPC and what results you can see when you reorganize based on the moneymakers.
The Situation: Misguided Campaign Structure
The business in question runs on licensing and continuing education for a particular industry. So the company wanted to target two distinct personas based on those two different groups.
The previous PPC account managers had separated the campaign structure based on audience personas: continuing education seekers and new licensees.
That sounds okay at the outset, except the keywords that were in the continuing education campaign were some of the same keywords that were in the new licenses campaign — and frankly, any of them could cater to either audience.
Here’s an example of how it was structured:
Continuing Education Campaign
dog walking continuing ed
dog walking renewals
dog walking licensing
New Licenses Campaign
dog walking licenses
dog walking courses
dog walking license tests
For the continuing education ads, searchers landed on a page that catered to that side of the business, and for the new license ads, they landed on a page with info specific to that.
But the thing is, it was a crap shoot. Any new licensee or a person seeking continuing education could come in via “dog walking courses,” for example.
So in the off chance they did convert on a particular landing page, in my opinion, it was pure luck.
The Fix: Follow The Money
When we dug into the account, we rolled up our sleeves; we had work to do. And we did what we always do: Follow the keywords that are making the business money.
The client was at first hesitant and wanted to continue the way they had been: campaigns based on personas. (We did get past that.)
Once we restructured the campaigns with the keywords that drove traffic and conversions, we refocused the ad creative and the landing pages (our messaging strategy catered to both possible personas), and let those do the work of qualifying the personas:
The Results: 123% Lift In Revenue
With a little love, the account experienced a huge lift in conversion rates, transactions and revenue for the client year over year. We suspect this will only get better, as we are still testing our strategy and adjusting it as we go.
From the report, we see:
- A 39-percent lift in conversion rates.
- An 84-percent lift in transactions.
- A 123-percent lift in revenue coming from PPC.
The moral of the story is this: PPC managers and online advertisers need to do the work to understand the intent behind the keywords, and then work that insight into various steps in the funnel.
That starts with ensuring the account structure is sound, following the keywords that are showing the most ROI, and then using marketing insights to make the ad messaging and landing pages guide the audience down the path to conversion.