AdWords Tips

Bid Stacking in AdWords: How to Pay Less When Using Multiple Match Types

A little while back, my fellow CS specialist Lisa wrote a great post to guide advertisers towards picking the right match types. In her post, Lisa pointed to the benefits of testing the same keyword with different match types to help determine which match type is the right fit for an advertiser’s account.

Now let’s explore a situation where you might want to actually keep running different match types simultaneously. In the below example, we have set a sample keyword (literally titled Keyword) to Broad Match and Phrase Match. Why would you want to want to keep these two particular keywords running simultaneously?Well, let’s say after testing your keyword at different match types you have decided you really like Broad Match. There could be a whole host of reasons why you’ve decided t... > Read more

August 27, 2013     |   Written by: Zina Kayyali   |   Posted In: AdWords Tips   |   Comments: 21

The Change in Quality Score Reporting: What Really Happened?

A few weeks ago, Google announced that it was changing the way Quality Scores would be reported. Not how they are calculated, they pointed out, just how the scores are reported. This seems like clear confirmation from Google that the 1-10 Quality Score you see in AdWords is just a “front” for whatever your “real” score is.

If nothing changed about your “real” Quality Score, and this is truly just a glossy reporting change, then there should be no effect on your other metrics. BUT, there’s another way to interpret Google’s announcement. Google might be saying that they haven’t changed the factors that go into Quality Score, but they have changed how they normalize the results (which is how they can compare disparate advertisers). If that’s true, then there could be substa... > Read more

August 26, 2013     |   Written by: Andy Stefano   |   Posted In: AdWords Tips   |   Comments: 25

Quality Score Hacks: 3 Sneaky Ways to Increase Your Quality Score

Don’t you just love how we can call almost anything a “hack” these days?Most of the “hacks” I see on the Internet are just tips, but calling them hacks makes it feel like you’re getting away with something. And whatever makes work more fun, I’m all for it.So let’s talk Quality Score. We’ve harped on and on about the importance of Quality Score.

It can save you up to 50% on cost per click (CPC), and those savings at the level of the click translate into savings of up to 80% on CPA, or cost per conversion. In other words, optimizing for Quality Score is basically a way to optimize for costs.So how do you actually increase your Quality Scores? Google’s exact formula for calculating Quality Score is famously mysterious, like the recipe for Coke. But we do know that click-th... > Read more

August 20, 2013     |   Written by: Elisa Gabbert   |   Posted In: AdWords Tips   |   Comments: 37

Google Conversion Tracking: Complete Guide to Conversion Tracking in AdWords

So you've got your AdWords campaign up and running, and your ads and keywords are starting to generate an impressive number of clicks. Great! But unless you've got conversion tracking installed, you won't be able to see how many of those clicks are actually resulting in sales.Conversion tracking is a powerful tool in AdWords that lets you identify how well your ad campaign is generating leads, sales, downloads, email sign-ups, and other key actions for your business.

The data recorded by conversion tracking allows you to identify which areas of your campaign are working and not working, so you can optimize your bids, ad text, and keywords accordingly.Depending on your business, a conversion could be counted when a customer makes a purchase through your website, signs up for a newsletter, f... > Read more

August 13, 2013     |   Written by: Erin Bell   |   Posted In: AdWords Tips   |   Comments: 28

How to Set Up an AdWords Account

 Think you’re ready to take the plunge and start a Google AdWords account? If the next three statements describe you, than you have my blessing!You have a website that is relevant, easy to navigate, and fairly well built out.Your AdWords account will help you to bring qualified searchers to your landing pages.

Once they’ve made it to your site, it’s your job to convince them to convert. To achieve this, you must create landing pages that will compel visitors to take action. If your landing pages are cluttered, lack relevant information or do not facilitate a conversion, you’re throwing money into a black hole and your paid search efforts will be in vain. If you know that your landing pages need a little TLC, check out these tips. (Bonus points if you have mobile optimized land... > Read more

August 07, 2013     |   Written by: Erin Sagin   |   Posted In: AdWords Tips   |   Comments: 5

Linking AdWords to Analytics: A Guide to Using Google AdWords & Analytics Together

Starting your own AdWords account is like having your first child. It’s pretty darn exciting, but scary at the same time. (“Will it bring joy to my life? Or drain all the money in my bank account?”)After creating an AdWords account, you’ll be sleepless for two reasons:1)  You’re brain starts getting super creative right around bed time, and you spend the next 4 hours emailing yourself ideas on what to test out in the morning.

2)  Every 20 clicks without a conversion is like your child screaming at night. You get no sleep because you really have no idea what you’re doing.And when your child grows up, you hope they’re either very creative and can do whatever makes them happy, or they’ll be so sharp and analytical that they can get into any school they want.Pay-per-cl... > Read more

August 06, 2013     |   Written by: Johnathan Dane   |   Posted In: AdWords Tips   |   Comments: 21

Enhanced Campaigns: What Geographical Targeting With Bid Modifiers Can Do For You

Now that July 22 has come and gone, let’s take a moment to look at one of the more promising new Enhanced Campaign features: geographical (location) targeting with bid modifiers.You’re probably thinking, “But we’ve always been able to target a specific location or state, even before Enhanced Campaigns.

” And you are right, location-based targeting did exist before Enhanced Campaigns. But now there is a new function called Bid Modifiers to better enable geographic-based targeting. Before Enhanced Campaigns, if you wanted to target a specific state/city/zip code/region, you would have to create an entirely new campaign unique to that targeted area. This often turned into a lengthy and time-consuming task, especially if more than one location needed to be targeted. Now, with Bid Modi... > Read more

August 05, 2013     |   Written by: Chris Panetta   |   Posted In: AdWords Tips   |   Comments: 3

Complete Guide to Enhanced Sitelinks

As advertisers in the pay-per-click industry, we’ve recently been exposed to a lot of new changes. Everyone is aware by now that Google began transitioning all accounts over to Enhanced Campaigns last week, whether you wanted to or not. Despite the overall mixed feelings on Enhanced Campaigns so far, there are a few features we can all be excited about.

One of the features that excited me the most was the changes to Ad Extensions, specifically Sitelinks. This post looks to explore some of the recent changes to Sitelinks, and how you can better understand your sitelinks’ performance.I performed a couple of case studies to identify if the sitelinks themselves were responsible for improving performance, or if simply taking up more SERP space is all that matters.Topics covered:Recap of chan... > Read more

July 31, 2013     |   Written by: Jason Gannon   |   Posted In: AdWords Tips   |   Comments: 10

AdWords Review Extensions: Add Positive Reviews & Testimonials to Your AdWords Ads

If you’ve had an eye on the AdWords Blog lately, you may have noticed that Google is on a roll when it comes to new features, particularly in the form of ad extensions—for example, see the new image extensions and enhanced, extra-large Google sitelinks.In the past, these “bells and whistles” were often utilized by only the savviest PPC experts.

Nowadays, ad extensions are a fundamental aspect of paid search accounts. If you’re not using them, hop on the bandwagon before you’re left in its dust. Not only do ad extensions require minimal setup time, they are also displayed at no additional cost—a win-win for most advertisers.Google’s latest brainchild is Review Extensions. As you can see in the example below, these extensions give you the opportunity to share positive reviews... > Read more

July 24, 2013     |   Written by: Erin Sagin   |   Posted In: AdWords Tips   |   Comments: 7

Enhanced Campaigns D-Day Is Less Than a Week Away – Are You Prepared?

Many advertisers we work with at WordStream have already upgraded to Enhanced Campaigns. I’ve been bullish on the changes since they were announced in February – though Enhanced Campaigns do come with some loss of control, I believe the benefits greatly outweigh the costs for most advertisers. Namely, those benefits include:Easier management of mobile campaigns and better measurement of mobile ROIMore powerful bidding tools for local ads and display banner adsFewer campaigns to manage overall – a big timesaverIf you’ve been happily chugging along with your legacy campaigns, I’ve got bad news for you.

On July 22, this coming Monday, upgrading to Enhanced Campaigns will no longer be an option. Basically, in about five days it’s sink or swim. Any campaigns that you have not alread... > Read more

July 17, 2013     |   Written by: Larry Kim   |   Posted In: AdWords Tips   |   Comments: 2

How to Reduce Your Cost Per Conversion by 16-80% (Sorry, Haters, Quality Score Still Matters)

Quality Score: Is it the be-all-end-all of AdWords metrics, or no big deal? You’ll get a different answer depending on who you ask. Proponents believe Quality Score is a good measure of the health of your account – high scores tend to correlate with lower costs and better results across the board.

Detractors will say QS is a distraction and all that really matters is your cost per conversion, because that’s how you determine your ROI.So who’s right? What should you focus on in your PPC reporting?What Is Quality Score?As a quick refresher, Quality Score is a metric Google uses to determine where advertisers rank on the SERP and how much they pay. Although AdWords functions as a kind of auction, if the system was purely determined by bids, spammy companies with lousy, irrelevant ads ... > Read more

July 16, 2013     |   Written by: Larry Kim   |   Posted In: AdWords Tips   |   Comments: 24

The Small Business Strategy Guide to Google AdWords

Promoting products and services while trying to compete with mega-giants like Amazon and Walmart is often a daunting task for small business owners. The good news is that Google AdWords has created a way for advertisers to do just that. Bigger brands may have an advantage when it comes to PPC, but they don’t hold all the cards.

Even with a small budget, you can get impressions and clicks on Google with a smart account  structure and the right targeting options.Having consulted hundreds of small and medium-sized business (SMBs) owners and marketing managers, my eyes have been opened to the struggles they face every day.The ProblemLet me take a second to set the stage. Anyone who tells you that AdWords is easy or that they can guarantee you numbers is lying to you. AdWords is complica... > Read more

July 15, 2013     |   Written by: Ben Cohen   |   Posted In: AdWords Tips   |   Comments: 21

Enhanced Campaigns FAQ: Top 5 Frequently Asked Questions on Enhanced Campaigns

As the deadline to migrate to Enhanced Campaigns looms ahead (it's in 12 days!), advertisers are becoming increasingly anxious about how these new features will impact their paid search accounts. Here are the answers to some of my clients’ top five most frequently asked questions about Enhanced Campaigns:Q: How do I determine my bid modifier for mobile?A: If you’ve advertised on mobile devices in the past, take some time to segment your performance by device and assess your mobile success.

Consider how you are performing at your current CPCs and set your bid modifiers accordingly. If you are new to the mobile space, Google recommends using this formula to calculate an appropriate bid adjustment: 100% x ((value per mobile click/value per desktop click) – 1)). Regardless of which metho... > Read more

July 10, 2013     |   Written by: Erin Sagin   |   Posted In: AdWords Tips   |   Comments: 5

Local Mobile Marketing Case Study: Colombo Hurd Slashes CPA with Mobile Marketing

Note: A version of this mobile marketing case study appears on the AdWords blog (PDF version).The rundown WordStream client Colombo Hurd upgraded its largest AdWords campaign to Enhanced Campaigns in April. Because mobile traffic has tended to be more valuable to the law firm, they decided to ramp up their local mobile marketing investment and increased mobile bids by +25%.

As of early May, Colombo Hurd had increased customer conversion rate on mobile ads by a factor of three and reduced the cost of a new customer acquisition by 149% with the new mobile marketing campaign.The Goals Increase conversionsGenerate phone calls to schedule in-person consultationsImprove sophistication of mobile-targeted advertisingThe Approach Upgraded largest campaign to EC and monitored resultsAdjusted CPC bid... > Read more

July 03, 2013     |   Written by: Elisa Gabbert   |   Posted In: AdWords Tips   |   Comments: 3

AdWords Account Audit Checklist

Here at WordStream, I am not only a Customer Success Specialist, but I am also a Premier Consultant. As a Premier Consultant I meet with clients every two to four weeks to discuss the state of their account and what they should be doing to improve it. On these calls we can really dig into what our advertisers need to be doing to improve their account, whether that’s setting up brand new remarketing campaigns, digging into how to improve quality score, or helping to analyze advanced metrics in Google Analytics.

Part of my usual process when I get a brand new Premier Consulting client is to first run through a checklist of items to determine what shape the account is in and what areas we can target to work on first together. I focus on the basic structural aspects in an account first, and t... > Read more

July 02, 2013     |   Written by: Phil Kowalski   |   Posted In: AdWords Tips   |   Comments: 13

8 Simple Things You Might Be Overlooking In Your AdWords Account [New Guide]

Our latest white paper is now available for download. Below is an excerpt from the guide. Click here to download the full text of this new, free guide (PDF).8 Simple Things You Might Be Overlooking In Your AdWords AccountAdWords makes it incredibly easy to set up and run a pay-per-click (PPC) ad campaign, but some advertisers assume that after they've written an ad, typed in some keywords, set the budget, and switched on the campaign, there's nothing more to do except sit back and watch the clicks and conversions roll in.

In reality, any account – large or small – can benefit from a few quick, simple tweaks designed to optimize the advertiser's reach, click-through rate, and return on investment (ROI). These updates don't cost anything extra, and they're simple enough that even someone ... > Read more

June 25, 2013     |   Written by: Elisa Gabbert   |   Posted In: AdWords Tips   |   Comments: 0

AdWords Performance Grader Now Even More Secure & Easier to Use with OAuth2

We’ve teamed up with Google to make our award-winning AdWords Performance Grader even easier to use and the login process more secure than ever.The new authentication process, based on OAuth2, enables you to run the free AdWords Performance Grader by signing in with your Google profile – just be sure you use the profile associated with an active Google AdWords account.

(The process is similar to using your Facebook account to comment on a blog.) WordStream will then do a one-time read of the data in your AdWords account, while Google controls a secure interaction. The new process is fast, easy and helps ensure the highest level of privacy and security.Watch this video to see how it works!To try out the new Grader for yourself, go to www.wordstream.com/google-adwords and follow these st... > Read more

June 24, 2013     |   Written by: Elisa Gabbert   |   Posted In: AdWords Tips   |   Comments: 5

AdWords Campaigns Limited by Budget? Find Out What It Means & What to Do

Budgeting seems to be the topic on everyone’s minds lately and I can’t help but think that this is due to Google’s subtle, or not so subtle, ways of telling you when you need to raise your bids and budgets. Google now has the ability to show you trends with your keywords, where you “should” be at for positioning and Max CPC’s, and other various tools that are likely to raise your budgets.

I don’t think Google is wrong in what they say but I definitely think they have a sneaky way of not really explaining the why to customers.Way back in 2009, Google introduced their way of showing you when you need to adjust your budget to better fit their needs … I mean your needs and help you get more impressions and clicks. They call this tactic “your campaign is ‘limited by budget.... > Read more

June 19, 2013     |   Written by: Lisa Wilkinson   |   Posted In: AdWords Tips   |   Comments: 12

How To Get Even More Google Sitelinks!

Google has today made it easier than ever to get new bigger and better Google Sitelinks for your ads, which help people find information deeper in your site so they can get to where they want to go faster.  Previously it was already possible to specify clickable anchor text for all of your Google Sitelinks.

And with today's update, AdWords is going even further by enabling you to designate specific text for your Google Sitelink descriptions from within your AdWords account. This will enable more granular control over the descriptions that display when your Google sitelink is shown to searchers.What Do Google Sitelink Ads Look Like?We're glad you asked. Here’s what the new super-sized Google Sitelinks ad look like:These huge new sitelinks are like the AdWords equivalent of the T-Rex ... > Read more

June 18, 2013     |   Written by: Larry Kim   |   Posted In: AdWords Tips   |   Comments: 17

Top 4 Google AdWords Features I'll Be Exploring This Summer

Last month, our team had the opportunity to visit Google’s NYC office for the Google Engage Catalyst conference.The event was directed toward agencies and, to be perfectly honest, I expected to get an earful of Google’s typical agenda pushing. Pleasantly to my surprise, Google delivered on their promise to show us “what’s new and exciting in online marketing.

”Here are the top four Google and AdWords features I’ll have my eye on this summer:Similar AudiencesCheck out this new twist on Remarketing, one of the most popular Display Network strategies. Similar Audiences allows you to display your ads to users whose browsing behaviors are similar to those of people on your current remarketing lists. I think this is a genius idea, considering that it will give you exposure to a new, q... > Read more

June 17, 2013     |   Written by: Erin Sagin   |   Posted In: AdWords Tips   |   Comments: 5

AdWords Becomes More Insightful with Auction Insights

A brilliant new feature has been added to the AdWords roster. Auction Insights now lets you see data across keywords and even up to the campaign level. Auction insights can be found in the Details tab under Campaigns, as shown below. You can get data for all or selected campaigns, ad groups or even keywords.

Now you can see metrics such as impression share, average position, overlap rate, position above rate and top of page rate.Auction Insights ExplainedAuction insights gives you 5 great metrics to work with:Average position – This gives you an average ranking over your selected time period along with the associated domain. (See also: The Relationship of Click-Through Rate & Ad Position.)Impression share – Represents the amount of times you have appeared in search results when you... > Read more

June 14, 2013     |   Posted In: AdWords Tips   |   Comments: 3

The Top 10 Best AdWords Features You're Not Using

The AdWords universe is forever expanding. Sure, some things get changed, demoted or taken away (like Pluto losing its planet status). But new PPC features are always being created, the latest being image extensions for search ads.It’s therefore imperative for PPC professionals to stay on beat with the latest and greatest as their competitors will surely be the ones to try out anything new.

But what about forgotten and hidden Google AdWords features that you’ve never thought of?Here’s an extensive look into the top 10 most underutilized AdWords features and how you can use them to your advantage.1. Above-The-Fold CPM Bidding on the Display NetworkMany studies have been produced regarding above- and below-the-fold ad placement, and it’s widely accepted that above-the-fold ad placemen... > Read more

June 12, 2013     |   Written by: Johnathan Dane   |   Posted In: AdWords Tips   |   Comments: 20

Should I Delete My Low Quality Score Keywords?

When trying to improve Quality Score across the board, it would seem intuitive that eliminating keywords with low Quality Scores would be a step in the right direction. However, blindly deleting all low-quality keywords in your account is not always the best solution.  Think about improving Quality Score the way you would think about eliminating a pest infestation.

If you’ve ever had any problem with pest control, you know that killing off your unwelcome visitors is not enough. In order to implement an effective pest control program, you need to identify the variable sources of the problem and find ways to combat/change them. Why are the pests there in the first place? Is it climate-related? Is it material-related? Do they have a readily available food source? Is there a nest somewh... > Read more

June 11, 2013     |   Written by: Zina Kayyali   |   Posted In: AdWords Tips   |   Comments: 3

Image Extend Your Ads: Google Introduces New Image Extensions

Google has revealed a new venture into ad extensions. Ladies and gentlemen, I present to you image extensions. If a picture is worth a thousand words, then AdWords users have certainly got a lot more room to create compelling text ads now.In Google’s announcement post, they talk about how this extension will be great to show off things like car models, jeans and even different shades of eye shadow.

There is a lot more that we could use this extension for. Service-based companies will be able to highlight their work, and, as in the above example, hotels will be able to showcase their facilities. We may even see some companies using their logos – it would be very interesting to see the results of this in comparison to other methods of image ads.Obviously any company with a visual angle w... > Read more

June 06, 2013     |   Posted In: AdWords Tips   |   Comments: 12

How Product Listing Ads Are Stealing Your Conversions

If you’ve ever done a Google search, you know already that Google ads are occupying more and more space on the SERP. What you might not know is that the fancy Product Listing Ads you see are commercial intent-sucking monsters and are stealing all the conversions from both the organic and non-PLA search results.

Today, when someone searches for anything related to a product name, Google automatically populates most of the above-the-fold space on the SERP with PLAs and other blinged-out ads:When I search on “keurig coffee maker,” about 80% of the screen is devoted to sponsored results featuring keurig products– I have to scroll below the fold to see more than two organic listings. All the ads you can see here make use of extensions (such as offer extensions, location extensions, etc.)... > Read more

June 05, 2013     |   Written by: Larry Kim   |   Posted In: AdWords Tips   |   Comments: 23

Google AdWords Ad Extensions Cheat Sheet

 If you’re looking to boost your paid search performance without working late in the office all summer or increasing your budget, try utilizing Ad Extensions. Not only do they require minimal set-up time, they are displayed at no additional cost.It can be tough to decide which extensions to focus on, so I’ve created a cheat sheet to help you decide which ones will work best for you:Sitelink ExtensionsWhat are they? As you can see above, Sitelink Extensions allow you to promote additional landing pages below your standard ad text.

Applying a few more lines to your ad gives you more real estate on the SERP, helping your ad to stand out against your competition. Sitelinks also give the searcher an opportunity to go to a more specific page on your site. For example, in the ad above, t... > Read more

June 03, 2013     |   Written by: Erin Sagin   |   Posted In: AdWords Tips   |   Comments: 35

Reporting Is the #2 Biggest Time Sink for PPC Managers – Is There a Better Way?

Over the past six months or so, I’ve been conducting an informal survey before all of my PPC webinars. I ask attendees to tell me how much time they spend doing PPC every week, as well as which task is the biggest time sink in PPC management. For the first question, answers vary from less than an hour up to 40 hours a week.

For the second, they’re a bit more consistent. I averaged the answers from the past several webinars and found that PPC managers find keyword research to be the single biggest time sink in PPC (wow, you guys really spend a lot of time on keyword research). This was followed closely by reporting and analysis:Why do advertisers spend so much time on PPC reporting? Because the available PPC reporting tools are often too complex. You go into AdWords or Analytics to chec... > Read more

May 29, 2013     |   Written by: Larry Kim   |   Posted In: AdWords Tips   |   Comments: 7

Should You Include the Same Keyword with All Match Types in AdWords?

There is an age-old argument about structuring your account based on the match type of the keywords in each ad group. Should you add all keywords on exact, phrase, and broad (and don’t forget modified broad)? What is the right way to do it? If there are so many ways to structure, how do you choose? These are all questions that, so far, I haven’t seen definitive answers to.

Everyone seems to have an opinion on how to structure an account – do this, don’t do that, add this, follow this best practice, etc. But who is right?Hard evidence seems to be lacking for one view or another, but is adding all these match types ever necessary? If you have a keyword on a broad match type, why do you need phrase and exact? Aren’t you already getting enough traffic? And this is where the problem l... > Read more

May 13, 2013     |   Written by: Lisa Wilkinson   |   Posted In: AdWords Tips   |   Comments: 25

Some Cautionary Notes on Upgrading to Enhanced Campaigns

Enhanced Campaigns Are Here! Wait … Am I Making More Money?When switching to Enhanced Campaigns – which will be required for all AdWords users within the next few months – I would advise all advertisers and managers to remember that any drastic changes that happen quickly and suddenly are most likely to go poorly.

While there is certainly cause for excitement surrounding the ability to control bids at a targeting level, I would implement any of these changes at a gradual pace as opposed to all at once. Every account is different, but don’t go nuts implementing a ton of geographic and device bidding all at once – you could quickly lose control of the account. Unless your account is totally upside down, I would try to roll out advanced bid changes throughout the summer at a slow pa... > Read more

May 09, 2013     |   Written by: Nick Weidman   |   Posted In: AdWords Tips   |   Comments: 3

Meet AdWords Keyword Planner – The New Google Keyword Tool and AdWords Traffic Estimator Mash-up!

AdWords has just rolled out AdWords Keyword Planner, a new tool that combines two of the most popular existing AdWords tools, the Google Keyword Tool and the AdWords Traffic Estimator, and adds to it a wizard-like integrated workflow to guide users through the process of finding keywords for creating new Ad Groups and/or Campaigns.

I’m guessing that at some point in the future, the AdWords Keyword Planner may replace the Google Keyword Tool and AdWords Traffic Estimator – tools which have been in service for over 10 years and are widely used for both PPC and SEO. So if you’ve used either tool in the past, take note here – your process is probably about to change!Getting Started With AdWords Keyword PlannerThe AdWords Keyword Planner supports three key use cases:Search for keyword an... > Read more

April 25, 2013     |   Written by: Larry Kim   |   Posted In: AdWords Tips   |   Comments: 26
 
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