AdWords Tips

The Ultimate Guide to Google AdWords Ad Extensions

One of the most underutilized weapons in a number of AdWords accounts is ad extensions. Ad extensions allow you to take up more real estate on the SERP, providing additional links to your site, product images and other information that can draw people in and increase your click-through rates. In this guide, we’ll be walking through each of the AdWords ad extensions in detail, showing you how they work, when they work, and why you’d want to leverage them.

In this post I will provide a brief overview of each. Click the headings on each section for an in-depth look at each of the AdWords ad extensions. (You might want to go ahead and bookmark this guide now...)Google AdWords Location ExtensionsAdWords location extensions show in response to certain local queries, and the data shown to sear... > Read more

September 15, 2011     |   Written by: Tom Demers   |   Posted In: AdWords Tips   |   Comments: 2

AdWords Experts Share the Secrets of Their PPC Success, Part 3

This is the third in a series of interviews we're conducting with AdWords advertisers who got unusually high scores using our AdWords Performance Grader. We're reaching out to high scorers to find out what strategies contribute to their strong AdWords performance. For more in this series, see:AdWords Experts Share the Secrets of Their PPC Success, Part 1AdWords Experts Share the Secrets of Their PPC Success, Part 2Today’s interview is with Rick Archer.

Rick is the founder of Search Summit, an independent search consultancy based in Iowa. You can reach Rich at rick@searchsummit.com.Tell us a bit about yourself. How long have you been using AdWords? Are you an Agency or an Advertiser?I’ve been using AdWords for about 10 years. I also work with adCenter, and I used to play with smaller ne... > Read more

September 13, 2011     |   Written by: Elisa Gabbert   |   Posted In: AdWords Tips   |   Comments: 3

Google AdWords Location Targeting: How Does AdWords Geographical Targeting Really Work?

On the surface, Google AdWords location targeting seems pretty straightforward: I tell Google where I want my ads to show and they show them only in that location. From Google’s own documentation (the number one result for “adwords location targeting” for me in Google, so it must be right, right?!):For each AdWords campaign, you can select the countries or regions and the languages for your ad.

That campaign's ads will appear only to users located in those areas and who have selected one of those languages as their preference.Emphasis is mine, but it seems to confirm what one would initially, intuitively assume. If that were all that were going on though, this would be the second nice thing I wrote about Google in the last 30 days (and that after I didn’t even totally pan AdWords E... > Read more

September 12, 2011     |   Written by: Tom Demers   |   Posted In: AdWords Tips   |   Comments: 3

Why Is My Content Network Cost Per Click So High? 3 Mistakes New Advertisers Make

Sometimes the controls inside of an AdWords account can be pretty overwhelming and confusing. AdWords is constantly adding new features, and it sometimes becomes difficult – particularly for new to intermediate-level advertisers – to quickly diagnose certain specific issues in their account. I think this is particularly the case on the content network, as many advertisers with a limited knowledge of AdWords will have had most of their experience working with search campaigns.

One seemingly simple issue that often frustrates unfamiliar advertisers is how to control cost per click (CPC) on the content network. Today we’ll talk about why your content network CPCs might be higher than they need to be, and how you can correct the issue.Mistake #1: Failure to Split Out Content and SearchThi... > Read more

September 08, 2011     |   Written by: Tom Demers   |   Posted In: AdWords Tips   |   Comments: 5

AdWords Experts Share the Secrets of Their PPC Success, Part 2

This is the second in a series of interviews we're conducting with AdWords advertisers who got unusually high scores using our AdWords Performance Grader. We're reaching out to high scorers to get AdWords help and find out what strategies contribute to their strong AdWords performance. For more in this series, see:AdWords Experts Share the Secrets of Their PPC Success, Part 1Today’s interview is with Stefan van Vliet, co-owner of Dutch agency Compass Online Marketing.

Tell us a bit about yourself. How long have you been using AdWords? Are you an Agency or an Advertiser? What is your primary goal for AdWords marketing?I have been working as an SEO consultant for a small Dutch web marketing agency for some years. Last February I launched a webstore, Feestkleding 365, selling fancy dress clo... > Read more

September 06, 2011     |   Written by: Elisa Gabbert   |   Posted In: AdWords Tips   |   Comments: 5

How to Identify Undervalued AdWords Assets Using Assisted Conversions & Channel Groupings

I’m pretty excited about Google Analytics multi-channel funnel reports, which isn’t always the case for me with new Google features. The interesting thing about this new data being available in Google Analytics is that it allows advertisers to get insight into areas of their online efforts that were creating more value for their business than they’d originally anticipated.

In this post, I’ll walk through some great reports for identifying assets in your AdWords campaigns that you may have been undervaluing.Creating the Reports – Using Channel Groupings, Assisted Conversion Values, & Assisted/Last Conversion Rates to Identify Undervalued AssetsBecause they’re both Google products the multi-channel reporting suite has a lot of nice prepopulated AdWords reports. To grab these ... > Read more

September 01, 2011     |   Written by: Tom Demers   |   Posted In: AdWords Tips   |   Comments: 0

AdWords Experts Share the Secrets of Their PPC Success, Part 1

This is the first in a series of interviews we're conducting with AdWords advertisers who got unusually high scores using our AdWords Performance Grader. We're reaching out to high scorers to find out what strategies contribute to their strong AdWords performance.Our first respondent is Marko Kvesic from Zagreb, Croatia.

Follow Marko on Twitter.Tell us a bit about yourself. How long have you been using AdWords? Are you an agency or an advertiser? What is your primary goal for AdWords marketing?I'm the Online Marketing Manager at GoTraffic Online Marketing Agency. I have a master's degree in traffic science and I'm a Google AdWords Qualified Individual. I've been using AdWords for more than eight months. Since I work at an agency and I'm managing my clients' accounts, my primary goal is to ... > Read more

August 30, 2011     |   Written by: Elisa Gabbert   |   Posted In: AdWords Tips   |   Comments: 17

Google AdWords Topic Targeting: What Is AdWords Topic Targeting & When Should You Use It?

Last week we pointed out that Google Display Ads have been the subject of a lot of Google marketing and advertising attention recently, and of course there is a lot of opportunity on the content network in many verticals.So when Google rolls out a new display network control like topic targeting as they did in March, it’s worth taking some time to better understand how the feature works and when it makes sense to utilize it.

What is AdWords Topic Targeting?Google describes topic targeting by explaining that:Using topics to contextually target your ads offers broad targeting and reach and is a good way to connect with a large audience quickly and easily to generate awareness or drive sales. When using topic targeting, our system looks at all the terms on a page to determine the t... > Read more

August 22, 2011     |   Written by: Tom Demers   |   Posted In: AdWords Tips   |   Comments: 1

Google AdWords Display Ads – Google’s Paying Close Attention to Display, Does that Mean You Should Too?

 You can learn a lot about marketing from Google, and if you’re in search marketing paying close attention to what Google says and what types of things they place emphasis on are vital to your lively-hood. This is why Matt Cuttsgets 350 comments on a post announcing a change in the algorithm that affects around 2% of queries, and it’s why search marketers have a much keener interest in Google Plus and its integration in SERPs, Webmaster Tools, et al than your average social network.

So when Google starts to push something and you’re a pay-per click practitioner you pay attention. Recently I’ve been aggressively retargeted by Google’s “Watch This Space” campaign:I’ve also seen it on LinkedIn where I’m sure from a job title, skills, groups, and probably even demographic... > Read more

August 18, 2011     |   Written by: Tom Demers   |   Posted In: AdWords Tips   |   Comments: 0

Learn Google AdWords – Learning AdWords Best Practices from Great Sources

When I outlined four definitive sources for learning about Quality Score recently on the blog I made the point that:When talking to people who are new to SEO and PPC, one thing I often caution them about is not to get bogged down by information overload. There is a remarkable amount of content to consume pertaining to search marketing, but much of it is:Good but redundantUnique but not really applicable for many peopleHigh-quality, but too advanced for beginnersMisinformationAs a result I really like to introduce people to a very short list of two to four authoritative resources on a subject so that they can get a few different perspectives and a complete picture on the topic, avoid information overload, and ensure that they’re reading quality information.

And the same is true of learning... > Read more

August 15, 2011     |   Written by: Tom Demers   |   Posted In: AdWords Tips   |   Comments: 1

Google AdWords Express Review: Is Google Express (AWExpress) Right for Your Small Business?

Table of Contents:ProsConsSmall Business ReviewI’ve been somewhat wary of new AdWords features in the past here on the blog, and have warned that sometimes what Google labels as a panacea answer to a longstanding pain point is either more of an opportunity for Google than for you or not as complete of an answer as it seems at first blush.

It probably shouldn’t be any surprise that – like most people who make their living optimizing paid search accounts, among other things – I have a healthy amount of skepticism when Google offers to just make everything super easy! So we thought we’d do a deep dive into the product formerly known as Boost: Google AdWords Express.What is Google AdWords Express?Google Express is the next step in a natural progression by Google to try to simplify Ad... > Read more

August 11, 2011     |   Written by: Tom Demers   |   Posted In: AdWords Tips   |   Comments: 27

Announcing the AdWords Performance Grader: Find Out How You’re Doing on AdWords and How to Improve for Free

Today we're announcing the release of our new AdWords Performance Grader, a free tool that grades your AdWords account performance by analyzing several key performance indicators (including Quality Score, Account Activity, Click-Through Rate, and Impression Share) and comparing your results against those of other AdWords advertisers with similar monthly budgets.

It's like a free, instant PPC audit.The AdWords Performance Grader:Shows you how well your campaigns are really doingGives you a sense of how you fit into the competitive landscapeProvides tips for improving your score and your resultsThe best way to learn about the AdWords Performance Grader is to grade your AdWords account for free, but if you don't have an AdWords account, take a look at the sample AdWords report below (click on... > Read more

August 08, 2011     |   Written by: Larry Kim   |   Posted In: AdWords Tips   |   Comments: 0

Quality Score 101: Learn About Google AdWords Quality Score from Four Definitive Sources

When talking to people who are new to SEO and PPC, one thing I often caution them about is not to get bogged down by information overload. There is a remarkable amount of content to consume pertaining to search marketing, but much of it is:Good but redundantUnique but not really applicable for many peopleHigh-quality, but too advanced for beginnersMisinformationAs a result I really like to introduce people to a very short list of two to four authoritative resources on a subject so that they can get a few different perspectives and a complete picture on the topic, avoid information overload, and ensure that they’re reading quality information.

This week our friends at PPC Hero re-released their Ultimate Guide to Quality Score, which is an outstanding resource on the topic, so I thought it ... > Read more

July 28, 2011     |   Written by: Tom Demers   |   Posted In: AdWords Tips   |   Comments: 1

Time to Reorganize Your AdWords Campaigns? Don't Forget Your Roadmap

Are your PPC campaigns delivering the results you want? Are you struggling with any of the below problems?:Click volume too lowCost per click too highCost per conversion too highLow Quality ScoresLow click-through ratesLow ROIIf you said yes, it might be time to reorganize your AdWords account.The below roadmap will guide you through the process of revamping a campaign to improve performance and lower costs.

Click the image to enlarge the roadmap. You'll find links to helpful resources at each road sign, so if you need more help in a given area of PPC, click on the green sign for more tips and information.If you're looking to get a free assessment of your AdWords account, try our AdWords Performance Grader. It grades your AdWords accounts on key criteria, showing you where and how to make ... > Read more

July 27, 2011     |   Written by: Elisa Gabbert   |   Posted In: AdWords Tips   |   Comments: 0

Google Analytics & AdWords Tracking Issues: Multiple AdWords Accounts for One Google Analytics Account

Google does a lot of things really well, and there is a ton of utility to be had in many of their free programs, but their account permissions and cross-product integration for things like Google AdWords, Webmaster Tools, and Google Analytics can be maddening sometimes.One common issue AdWords advertisers struggle with is linking multiple AdWords accounts to a single Google Analytics account.

In this post we’ll walk through some possible solutions here. (If you're looking to link an Adwords account to Google Analytics, we have that covered too.)Why Would I Want to Have Multiple AdWords Accounts and a Single Analytics Account?Before we address how to link multiple AdWords accounts to a single Google Analytics account, let’s walk through a few different reasons you might want to create s... > Read more

July 21, 2011     |   Written by: Tom Demers   |   Posted In: AdWords Tips   |   Comments: 3

What to Do When Your AdWords CPCs Are Too High

An issue that is becoming more common as PPC gets increasingly competitive is escalating costs per click (CPCs) in niches that had previously been relatively uncompetitive. The problem here is that PPC campaigns that had once been profitable or that may have been viable become untenable for advertisers.

If a conversion becomes profitable for you at $75 and you’re paying $15 a click, it’s very difficult to run a profitable campaign.In this post, we’ll look at five things you can do to try to push down those AdWords costs per click.1. Focus on Improving Quality ScoresWe usually like to start here, as a focus on Quality Score affords you an opportunity to compete in the auctions you want to be in for a reduced rate without shifting your keyword or network targeting. Many times if you’... > Read more

July 18, 2011     |   Written by: Tom Demers   |   Posted In: AdWords Tips   |   Comments: 2

AdWords Top vs. Side Ad Performance: How to Use the Latest AdWords Report Segment

The Inside AdWords blog announced yesterday that there will be a new report segment available in AdWords accounts: top versus side. Basically the idea here is that you can see how your ads perform when they’re placed above search results versus when they’re placed below search results – the focus here being on physical position on the page rather than the numeric order in which the ads appear.

The report looks like this:As with any new AdWords feature, the key question to ask as you’re shown more data by the folks at Google is: What can I actually do with this information? In this case the top versus side segment data can be useful in a few different ways.What to Do with AdWords Top Versus Side DataLooking at the new top vs. side reports, I see three interesting potential applicati... > Read more

July 14, 2011     |   Written by: Tom Demers   |   Posted In: AdWords Tips   |   Comments: 2

Google AdWords Editor 101: AdWords Editor Tutorials, Tips & Resources

If you’re managing pay-per-click campaigns, the Google AdWords Editor is a really handy (but fundamentally limited) free tool provided by Google to help you with certain PPC tasks. It’s a free, desktop-based application, currently in the 10th version of the tool (check out the changelog here and get the application itself here).

To help you get the most out of Google's AdWord Editor, it’s important to understand what the tool is and what it isn’t.AdWords Editor is a free resource provided by Google that can help you with several bulk editing tasks within your AdWords campaigns, such as:Raising or lowering bids on a number of different keywordsCopying large sections of your campaigns and then tweaking certain areas (moving a list of keywords, a set of ad text, etc.)Changing keyword m... > Read more

July 11, 2011     |   Written by: Tom Demers   |   Posted In: AdWords Tips   |   Comments: 2

Google AdWords Remarketing Strategy: Three AdWords Remarketing Tips

Google AdWords remarketing (and really remarketing in general) is a hot trend in the world of pay-per-click marketing. Remarketing is basically a way of getting your message in front of people who have visited your site in the recent past – you’ve no doubt seen a site you recently visited “following you around” via advertisements.

And if you’re a paid search manager, you’ve likely set up a slew of remarketing campaigns in the last few months, many times at the specific request of the client, but there are still PPC advertisers who are either just getting their remarketing campaigns started or are still considering how much value there would be in a remarketing campaign.In this post we’ll cover three important things to consider as you get your first remarketing campaigns up an... > Read more

July 07, 2011     |   Written by: Tom Demers   |   Posted In: AdWords Tips   |   Comments: 2

AdWords Display Network Banners: 5 Tips for Using Crowdsourced Ad Banner Design

In a few recent posts on how to get more volume on the content network and on getting more leads from PPC, we talked about leveraging the content network to expand AdWords campaigns and attract more prospects via PPC.Most advertisers know how to get started with Google’s search network, and even with creating specific content network campaigns, but an area that often trips up advertisers – particularly new advertisers or those who are looking to expand beyond their initial structures – is building out “display” campaigns using Google AdWords, or creating banner ads for display on the content network.

Many times the stumbling block here is more around designing the creative (banner ads) than around the mechanics of creating a structure for your content network campaigns.For that r... > Read more

June 13, 2011     |   Written by: Tom Demers   |   Posted In: AdWords Tips   |   Comments: 1

AdWords Quality Score FAQ Continued: 5 More Questions About Quality Score

We received the following questions during our recent webinar, "Improving Quality Score." For more help with understanding and improving AdWords Quality Score, check out these resources:Quality Score Toolkit (this free kit includes a Quality Score worksheet, cheat sheet, white paper, and video)Quality Score FAQImproving Quality Score (webinar recording)Ultimate Guide to Quality Score (15 experts on Quality Score)Do site links improve CTR and Quality Score? According to data from Bigmouth Media, "ads that run with Ad Sitelinks typically result in an average click through rate increase of 30%.

" RKG reported similar results: "To take seasonal shifts out of the picture, I looked at the brand performance since the links were launched, and compared this data to the same time period last year. We... > Read more

June 01, 2011     |   Written by: Elisa Gabbert   |   Posted In: AdWords Tips   |   Comments: 2

Re-Creating AdWords Campaign Performance Charts in Excel, Part 5: Dynamic Controls

This is the final post in my series on Re-Creating the AdWords Dashboard in Excel. For the rest of the series, see below:Re-Creating AdWords Campaign Performance Charts in Excel, Part 1: The DataRe-Creating AdWords Campaign Performance Charts in Excel, Part 2: The TransformationRe-Creating AdWords Campaign Performance Charts in Excel, Part 3: Making the ScorecardRe-Creating AdWords Campaign Performance Charts in Excel, Part 4: Making the ChartsIn part four of this series, you learned how to build the charts for the AdWords dashboard.

In this article, I will show you how to make the dashboard dynamic by teaching you how to:Add a dynamic campaign filter.Add a dynamic date-range picker using a Data Validation list.Building the Campaign FilterAs you may recall we are using the DTP framework as... > Read more

May 19, 2011     |   Written by: Chad Summerhill   |   Posted In: AdWords Tips   |   Comments: 3

Re-Creating AdWords Campaign Performance Charts in Excel, Part 4: Making the Charts

In part three of this series, you learned how to build our dashboard’s scorecard. In this article, I will show you:How to build the charts.How to copy and reuse your charts to save time when building multiple charts.Building the Charts The AdWords Campaign Performance report only has two charts and they allow you to choose from many different available metrics for comparison.

Our dashboard isn’t really limited by space, so we will be creating a chart for each of our KPI’s.ImpressionsClicksCostConversionsCTRCRCPACPCThe best way to do this is to create and format one chart for one KPI, and then we will copy the chart several times for each of the other KPI’s. This technique will save you lots of time, because you will only have to format your chart once.Follow these steps:1. Ins... > Read more

May 11, 2011     |   Written by: Chad Summerhill   |   Posted In: AdWords Tips   |   Comments: 1

Re-Creating AdWords Campaign Performance Charts in Excel, Part 3: Making the Scorecard

In part two of this series, you learned how to transform the data we will be using to create our dashboard. In this article, I will show you:How to build the scorecard.How to use conditional formatting.How to use the camera tool.Presentation (the “P” in “DTP”)Again, we are using the DTP framework created by the smart folks at Juice Analytics.

The presentation layer for our exercise consists of all the pieces of our dashboard:Dynamic charts and scorecardsDynamic controls for date ranges and campaign filteringBuilding dynamic dashboards in Excel can be a challenge, but if you’ve already completed the steps from the first two posts in this series you’ve done the hard part. Now we are ready for the fun stuff.The Dashboard TabFirst, we need to create a new worksheet and rename it ... > Read more

May 03, 2011     |   Written by: Chad Summerhill   |   Posted In: AdWords Tips   |   Comments: 1

Re-Creating AdWords Campaign Performance Charts in Excel, Part 2: The Transformation

In Part 1 of this series, you learned how to prepare the data we will be using to create our dashboard. In this article, I will show you:How to set up an Excel pivot table.How to use calculated metrics in a pivot table.How to use Named Ranges in Excel.How to use the OFFSET formula in Excel.Transformation (The “T” in “DTP”)We are going to use an Excel pivot table for our "transformation" layer in our DTP framework (worksheet).

You should already have your data prepared in the "current" worksheet, so you will need to:1. If you haven’t already, format your data as a table in Excel by highlighting your entire data set in the "current" worksheet and click on "Format as Table" from the "Home" menu.2. Now select any cell within your table and navigate to the "Insert" menu and insert a "... > Read more

April 26, 2011     |   Written by: Chad Summerhill   |   Posted In: AdWords Tips   |   Comments: 2

Re-Creating AdWords Campaign Performance Charts in Excel, Part 1: The Data

Interesting things you will learn in this how-to:How to prepare data for year-over-year analysis in ExcelHow to use the Excel INDEX-MATCH formulaHow to use the Excel ISNA formulaA few weeks ago I showed you how to compare date ranges in AdWords, and then a few days later I came across an article on Search Engine Journal about using the new AdWords dashboard located on the "Home" tab.

 In the article the author mentioned how, in the new version of the Home tab, you couldn’t do date range comparison like in the previous version. See the image below:So, I thought it might be interesting to try and recreate this chart and summary in Excel. The finished dashboard will look something like this:For this exercise I will be using a variation of the Juice Analytics DTP Framework.Data (the... > Read more

April 18, 2011     |   Written by: Chad Summerhill   |   Posted In: AdWords Tips   |   Comments: 4

AdWords Position Preference Bidding Is Retired: What You Need to Know About AdWords Average Position

Google recently announced that they are retiring position preference bidding. Some smart PPC managers had been talking about how position bidding wastes money for some time, and Google's own chief economist had taken great pains to lay out the argument against bidding to position in your attempts to improve your actual sales and costs per sale.

 If you're hearing this news now for the first time you might be wondering why people ever used bidding to position as a means of managing bids, what you should know about AdWords average position metric, and of course: whether or not there may be some instances where this data is still useful in your campaign.Why Bid to Position?Obviously with Google sharing some of its own data and Google and top PPC minds decrying the value of the metric... > Read more

April 14, 2011     |   Written by: Tom Demers   |   Posted In: AdWords Tips   |   Comments: 2

AdWords Marries Opportunities Tab to Campaign Experiments: What Does it Mean for You?

We've written here about some of the things to be aware of with regard to the AdWords opportunities tab, and we've talked in depth about AdWords Campaign Experiments. AdWords recently announced a new feature that enables advertisers to run campaign experiments against AdWords opportunities. This is a really interesting feature combo -- both from a pure functionality standpoint and in thinking about where AdWords is heading, so let's unpack it.

What Exactly Does Opportunities & Experiments Combining Mean?So how does this play out, exactly? Basically all Google's done (from the end-user perspective anyway) is make the campaign experiments functionality visible and available as you're browsing the opportunities Google is presenting you with:(Funny aside: this is the screenshot from the Goo... > Read more

April 07, 2011     |   Written by: Tom Demers   |   Posted In: AdWords Tips   |   Comments: 4

Comparing Year-Over-Year Search Query Trends

In the past I’ve written extensively about search query mining for negative keywords and new keyword opportunities, and while search query mining is arguably the best use of the search query report, there are other insights worth exploring. Have you ever wondered what search queries were driving your business last year and if they are still contributing this year? Are there new search queries emerging in your market? To answer these questions, you will have to do a year-over-year search query analysis.

 While the AdWords interface does allow for date range comparisons down to the keyword level, it loses this functionality at the search term level. We are left with analyzing date range comparisons for search queries in Excel.Getting the right dataThe goal of this analysis is to c... > Read more

April 06, 2011     |   Posted In: AdWords Tips   |   Comments: 5

Reporting on Multiple 1-Per-Click Conversion Types (Conversion Action Names) in AdWords at the Campaign & Ad Group Level

If you're a PPC software company, one of the best opportunities to add value on top of the AdWords interface is by thinking more about advertiser pain points than Google is able to. Google frequently has to balance features that help their advertisers generate more revenue against features that help Google generate more revenue, and frequently since Google isn't an advertiser, even when they build something that seemingly has optimizing for conversions in mind, they don't always get it quite right for the advertiser.

Just as it's important to realize which new AdWords features aren't necessarily worth implementing, it's equally important to identify gaps in AdWords' feature set and reporting so you can find ways to fill it. Today we'll talk about one of these gaps: reporting on multiple 1-p... > Read more

April 04, 2011     |   Written by: Tom Demers   |   Posted In: AdWords Tips   |   Comments: 2
 
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