Posts Tagged ‘adwords’

Learn to Reduce Irrelevant AdWords Costs & Boost Conversions in 15 Minutes

By February 25th, 2014

As a search marketer, my ultimate goal is to generate the most relevant clicks to my website and to trim the costs of my campaigns so I’m spending efficiently and optimally. Given this, my biggest enemy is irrelevant clicks because it can suck the life out of my piggy bank. While I think Google AdWords is a great channel, it can definitely run up your costs in a wasteful manner if you don’ t know what you’re doing. But when paid search is done right, it can really help drive visitors that are highly interested in your product or services.

In this quick 15 minute read, you’ll learn a few targeting option basics and how to identify where you might be wasting costs. I’ll also cover how understanding data performances will help you optimize to boost your conversions. If you’re able to pay less for clicks, your cost per conversion will also be less – and that’s a big win. For each of my suggestions below, I strongly advise you to add in the Google Conversion Pixel so that you can see the performances against your marketing goals.

Here are 3 questions you need to ask yourself:

1. Is your campaign on the Display Network?

When you’re setting up your campaign for the first time, Google Adwords will default to traffic your ads on both the “Search & Display Network.” In most cases, this isn’t the option you’re looking for. Here’s a quick breakdown of what the difference is:

  • Search Network: Your ads will appear next to Google search results, and you’ll reach people with intent in mind who are searching for a specific product or service.
  • Display Network: Your ads will be placed on websites opted into Google AdSense, a program that gives websites a way to earn money by displaying ads on their site. By selecting ads to run with this option, AdWords will take your keywords and match them up with related websites. While this may sound like a good idea, the user intent is usually very different than Search Network ads; these ads are usually shown to people that fall into the “browsing” category where they are simply surfing the web to read – not having specific intent.

There are two ways to find out if you are active on the Display Network. First is the small text above the “Settings” tab, or you can find it by clicking on the “Settings” tab and navigating over to “Type.” Here you will be able to see and change what network you are running on.

AdWords campaign settings example

To see how your network placements are performing, click into the “Campaigns” tab, then select “Segment” and navigate to “Network”.  Here you will see the breakdown per network and make strategic decisions from there.

AdWords segment setting example

Tip: If you are going to try out Display Network, it’s best to break it into a separate campaign so you can monitor the campaigns and bid separately. Be sure to also check the placements to see where your ads are appearing.

2. Should you be bidding on mobile devices?

The first question you should ask yourself is if your website has an optimal mobile experience. If it doesn’t then you could be wasting clicks away. You can view this data through your analytics platform to see what the engagement metrics are between mobile traffic versus computer traffic – or better, import the data from Google Analytics into Adwords to get one full view. While mobile searches are growing and it sounds great to reach new customers from any device, marketers need to realize that mobile users have different intent and behaviors than someone on a computer. For example, mobile users may encounter your ads at 7:00pm while waiting for dinner and are simply just browsing to pass the time, whereas those who are in front of a computer may be more engaged and looking for something specific with intent in mind.

Due to the way Google Adwords is setup, it’s likely that you are trafficking ads to mobile devices. To see how your mobile ads are performing, click into the “Campaigns” tab then select “Segment” and navigate to “Device.”

With the presented data, you can decide to reduce or increase the bid adjustments across your different device targeting options anywhere from 90% and +300%, or at -100% to opt out of traffic from mobile devices completely.

3. Do you know what geographic locations are high-performing or low-performing?

Let’s role-play and say that you’re a company that specializes in selling custom teddy bears and you operate in the entire United States. For some reason, the conversion rates are lower in the Midwestern states compared to all the other states you’re targeting. This is your opportunity to optimize your bids and reduce the bid adjustments.

When you set yourself up for bidding in locations with a large audience size, such as all of the United States, your reach is broadened and it’s best to put some controls so that you’re reaching locations that resonate best with your product, services, or goals. Geographic bid modifiers is a fantastic way to boost bids on high-performing locations and lower bids on poor-performing locations.

To drill in and see how geography locations are performing, click into the “Dimensions” tab then select to view “Geographic.”

AdWords geographic setting example

With these three things in mind, don’t let irrelevant clicks drain your piggy bank. Be sure to keep tabs on your campaign, at the very least, once per week. The more informed you are about who you’re targeting, the better you can optimize to efficiency and profitability.

Retailers Increase PLA Spend 300% in 2013 as CPCs Continue to Rise

By January 22nd, 2014

2013 marked the first full year of Google Shopping since the transition to a commercial model built on PLAs. With Google Shopping campaigns slated for release later this quarter, retailers must not only prepare for the upcoming changes to AdWords, but also familiarize themselves with shifting PLA trends in the new shopping landscape. To help advertisers remain competitive and win the battle for revenue online, Marin has released the 2014 annual research brief, examining the current state of Google Shopping. Analyzing year-over-year performance, with a focus on the holiday season and consumer engagement across devices, this reports provides a comprehensive breakdown of PLA performance in 2013 and insight into what retailers should expect in 2014.

Our research started by analyzing the meteoric increase in spend on PLAs throughout 2013, especially during the holiday season. Significant year-over-year increases directly linked to the rise in competition as more advertisers increased invest in PLAs, drove CPCs to historic levels. With advertisers continuing to allocate more budget towards PLAs and away from text ads, the search industry is undergoing a dramatic shift. The seemingly overnight success of PLAs and the emergence of hotel price ads (HPAs) foreshadow a search landscape where advertisers, whether in retail, automotive, or financial services, will have at their disposal richer and more engaging, industry-specific ad formats. These will undoubtedly emerge over the next two years.

The findings in this report not only impact advertisers across industries, but also how advertisers engage their customers across devices. During the holiday season, retailers witnessed shoppers favoring smartphone PLAs over its desktop and tablet counterparts. Not only were they cheaper, but smartphone PLAs also outperformed PLAs delivered on desktop and tablet devices from a CTR perspective. If 2013 was the year of mobile, or more accurately, enhanced campaigns, then 2014 is certainly the second year of mobile. Marin predicts that by December 2014, 40% of all PLA clicks will occur on smartphones. That’s a lot of clicks that retailers will need to provide a mobile optimized shopping experience for.

For more 2013 PLA trends, findings, and predictions, download our 2014 annual report, The State of Google Shopping: Mobile Shoppers & Record PLA Spend Drive Success for Retailers.

Getting to Know Google’s New “Shopping Campaigns”

By November 25th, 2013

Google, Shopping campaigns, PLAs, marin software, ppc, semLate last month, Google introduced Shopping campaigns, a new way for retail advertisers to manage and report on Product Listing Ads. While retailers can continue running regular Product Listing Ads campaigns, Shopping campaigns offer additional flexibility and visibility that advertisers will truly appreciate. This new campaign type is only available to a select number of retailers today;, however, it’s important to understand what the changes and benefits are before they’re generally available early next year.

How Do Shopping Campaigns Work?

By now retail search marketers know that Merchant Center data is critical in creating and managing Product Listing Ads. Shopping campaigns address this requirement by making all product data accessible within AdWords, removing the need to reference Merchant Center. Advertisers can now easily browse and organize their product inventory and make informed decisions about their advertising strategy within a single interface.

One of the biggest changes is the replacement of product targets with product groups. Product groups are used to select which products retailers want to bid on for a given campaign. There can be multiple product groups within a single campaign. Advertisers can subdivide inventory into customized product groups using any product attributes and the products that aren’t subdivided remain in an “Everything else” product group. Bids can then be calculated and set for individual groups.

Google, Shopping campaigns, PLAs, marin software, ppc, sem

What’s Changed?

Here’s what has and hasn’t changed:

  • Product Listing Ads are still Product Listing Ads: Ads appear in the same places, on the same networks.
  • Product groups, not product targets: Shopping campaigns are powered entirely by Merchant Center product data and products are organized into product groups using any combination of product attributes.
  • No more “AdWords grouping” and “AdWords labels”:  “AdWords grouping” and “AdWords labels” attributes no longer exist. If additional categorization is needed beyond product attributes, custom labels can be used.
  • New custom labels: Use the custom labels attribute to subdivide products. Create up to five custom labels per product in the Merchant Center feed and assign values to each label as needed.

What Are the Benefits?

There are four key benefits to using Shopping campaigns:

  • Increased Efficiency: Marketers can browse their product catalogue directly with AdWords and create product groups for inventory they want to bid on.
  • Greater visibility: Gain visibility into how individual products or categories of products are performing at any level of granularity.
  • Deeper Insights: Benchmarking data (CPC and CTR) provides insight into the competitive landscape. Furthermore, marketers can identify revenue opportunities with impression share data and bid more aggressively to remain competitive in the auction.
  • More Control: Assign priority to multiple Shopping campaigns (containing the same products) to determine which campaign and bids will be used when ads for those products show. Additionally, limit the products advertised using inventory filters, which leverage defined Merchant Center product attributes, like brand or product type.

Let us know your thoughts on Google’s new Shopping campaigns and how you think they’ll impact your PLA strategy for 2014.

Note: At this time, shopping campaigns are not supported via the AdWords API.

Remarketing Lists for Search Ads

By September 30th, 2013

Google Adwords Remarketing Retargetting Marin SoftwareIn July, we talked about a new feature that Google was rolling out of beta – Remarketing Lists for Search Ads (RLSA). For those still new to RLSAs, Google is now allowing advertisers to update their bids and creatives to people that have visited their website in the past. We were quite excited to try out this new feature out, see how easy (or hard) it would be to implement, and what the results would look like.

One of the hardest things about managing paid search accounts over time is staying up to date with new Google features and how it all integrates within AdWords. Account structure becomes vital as you look to keep your account organized to manage but also to generate the best possible results. While I mentioned my excitement earlier, I was also slightly stressed out over how difficult it may be to setup and manage results for yet another new campaign and set of rules.

Setup was surprisingly easy, albeit one catch:

  1. Make sure your Remarketing Ads tracking code is active on all the appropriate pages on your website. Build out the audiences that you’d like to track and remarket to. (For example, group the folks looking at shoes differently than those looking at apparel.)
  2. If you want to change your creative for the remarketing ads, you need to create a second duplicate campaign. The original campaign will remain as is, and the new campaign will show to anyone that is part of the cookie pool. I did not account for this originally so I had to go back and do this step.
  3. Once you’ve decided whether you are going to clone your campaign or not for step B, then you can go ahead and start implementing the remarketing campaign. You simply go to the audiences tab and click the +Remarketing button. Choose the ad group you want to use and then add the audience from your website you want to target.
  4. You’ll want to go in and make the appropriate bid adjustment. This works the same way as the enhanced campaigns functionality.
  5. Last but not least, go in and change the creative if you decided to clone the campaign from step B to show different ads.

I think the implementation was fairly easy. Cloning campaigns and creating new ads is simple enough. Again, the hardest part is potentially just managing another new campaign. This gets especially difficult for those of you managing intricate campaigns with hundreds and thousands of campaigns and ad groups.

Without divulging into too much detail on our performance, we’ve seen some good results. With the retargeting lists, we set up bid adjustments of return visitors on key ad groups and upped the bids anywhere from 20-40%. We also updated the copy and, in some cases, the offer. While the CPCs are naturally higher, the CTR and CPL are both improved for a majority if the campaigns. The volume is a lot lower than our main campaigns, but this will be mainly dependent on the number of visitors in your cookie pool.

In all, Google does a great job giving marketers the tools and resources they need to find their customers. This is another win for the advertiser. I hope many of you are taking advantage of this new feature and testing it out to see if it works as well for you. If anyone has any stories, tips, or best practices, we would love to hear them.

Online Retail: 5 Strategies for Search Marketing Success, Part 2

By August 12th, 2013

Retail ROIIf you didn’t get a chance to read the first two tips in this series, check out Part 1 here. If you’re already up to speed, we’re going to pick up where we left off and discuss three more strategies to make your online retail search marketing programs a success.

3) Advertise your entire product catalog. Retailers that promote their complete product line and deliver relevant ads are able to differentiate their offerings and maximize their revenue outcomes.

  • Dynamically manage campaigns to maximize visibility. Use a management platform with real-time automation and leverage a structured product feed. Align your paid search campaigns with your products in order to advertise your entire inventory at scale.
  • Simplify PLA management and optimization. With automated PLA campaign tools, you can make additions and edits in bulk, and efficiently create PLA objects without introducing errors.
  • Scale creative management. Successful online retailers use tools to quickly isolate and update creative to align with promotions. Top performing creative should be continuously identified, optimized, and deployed at scale.

4) Convert on-the-go consumers with mobile. Retailers that can successfully and engage on-the-go shoppers will be able to acquire revenue as customers move across devices.

  • Segment mobile performance. Use reporting tools that provide analysis of performance by device along dimensions such as product line and geography. This will give you actionable insights for optimizing the mobile shopping experience and implementing mobile-specific bidding strategies.
  • Deliver mobile-specific creative. Increase relevance with local cues such as name of a city or region, and use mobile location and call extensions.
  • Implement mobile-based bidding strategies. Identify trends in mobile searches and conversion rates to inform a strategy that will allow you to engage mobile shoppers at the right time. To combat competitors, continuously adjust bids based on segmented performance.

5) Optimize for seasonal shifts. Retailers that account for seasonality will maintain an advantage and accelerate revenue outcomes during critical buying periods.

  • Schedule bid adjustments based on forecasted performance. Use a bidding solution that automatically adjusts bids according to expected shifts in seasonal performance. Deploy boost schedules to proactively optimize for revenue-per-click fluctuations.
  • Factor conversion latency into bid calculations. Since the time between the initial ad click and the purchase can range from the same session to several months, most online retailers can optimize bids by using an automated solution to exclude the most recent days from their bid calculations.
  • Identify and exclude outlying data. Periods of irregular paid search data can wreak havoc on your bid calculations. Account for these times by excluding the specific dates and date ranges from bid calculations across campaigns and product lines.

Are you a search marketer in the online retail industry? Share your tips for success in our comments section. And make sure to download a copy of our white paper, “Revenue Acquisition Management for Online Retailers,” for more in-depth discussion of these winning strategies.

Online Retail: 5 Strategies for Search Marketing Success, Part 1

By August 7th, 2013

retail roi adwords marin softwareDid you know? Online retailers spend more on paid search advertising than just about any other industry. In fact, retailers will account for more than $3 billion of Google AdWords revenue this year.

Retailers face unique challenges in the battle for online revenue. And in this highly competitive space, technological inefficiencies and the inability to execute effectively on paid search strategies results in higher costs, lower margins, and missed opportunities.

Marin Software studied some of the world’s largest and most successful retailers, and identified 5 strategies for success. Read on for ideas to improve your own search marketing programs.

1) Allocate your budget efficiently. Retailers that efficiently allocate their budgets are able to maximize revenue without increasing spend.

  • Measure performance by business need. Segment and analyze your paid search performance across several dimensions (product line, geography, etc.) to gain insight into ROI, unconstrained by account structure. Then allocate your budget accordingly.
  • Manage by exception to reduce wasted budget. Filter large datasets and create alerts to make smarter decisions faster. Deploy negative keywords, find and eliminate unprofitable keywords, and optimize underperforming creative.
  • Forecast performance based on revenue goals. Automated tools can build forecast models to anticipate changes in performance, allowing search marketers to hit their business targets based on adjusted revenue goals and projected budgets.

2) Capitalize on brand equity to beat out the competition. Retailers that do this are able to maximize ad visibility and create engaging brand experiences.

  • Integrate ad extensions to increase brand presence. When it comes to sitelinks in particular, make sure to align differentiated brand messaging with specific, high-value landing pages to minimize the presence of competitors and provide a more intimate retail experience.
  • Bid to position to maximize visibility. Flexible bidding solutions that can target a preferred position for brand keywords enable search marketers to increase bids immediately following a competitive shift in ad position.
  • Engage customers with expanded brand keywords. First, gain visibility into your paid search query reports and isolate the keywords that align with the needs of your customer. Then, assign each with unique landing pages that provide engaging content. Finally, generate highly relevant content that aligns with customer intent.

Stay tuned for three more strategies, coming soon. And for more information, download our white paper, “Revenue Acquisition Management for Online Retailers.” The white paper reviews the challenges in executing each strategy and highlights tools and techniques for addressing them. It’s a must-read for any search marketer in the online retail vertical.

Google Is Listening: Enhancing the Enhanced Campaign

By April 11th, 2013

Morpheus Enhanced Campaigns Mobile Bid AdjustmentsOn Tuesday Google announced that advertisers will soon be able to set mobile bid adjustments at the ad group level, in addition to the campaign level, for enhanced campaigns. This comes on the heels of Google’s release of two new ValueTrack parameters: {ifmobile:[value]} and {ifnotmobile:[value]}. Google also indicated July 22, 2013 as the start of the migration deadline, when AdWords will begin automatically upgrading legacy campaigns to enhanced campaigns.

These recent announcements shouldn’t come as a surprise to search marketers. Google has historically made adjustments to new AdWords features as market demands became more evident. (A recent example is last year’s update to the campaign ad rotation settings.) Sophisticated search marketers have been asking for additional enhanced campaign features to provide additional control and transparency for optimizing their paid search programs. Today, we’ll review the two recently announced enhancements to enhanced campaigns and discuss their importance to search marketers who operate in a multi-device world.

Ad Group Mobile Bid Adjustment

Before this Announcement: A mobile bid adjustment could only be set at the campaign level, which allows advertisers to boost desktop keyword bids for searches on mobile devices by -100% to 300% across the entire campaign.

The Ask from Marketers: Search marketers are used to granularity. From management to reporting to optimization, sophisticated marketers often desire to operate at the most granular levels possible, which often means making decisions down at the keyword level. The reason is that clicks, cost, conversions, and revenue data are all attributed at the keyword level; and in order to optimize bids and maximize performance, keyword-level bids needed to be calculated and applied individually.

The Updated Approach: Google will now allow advertisers to set a mobile bid adjustment at the ad group level. Once implemented, the same boost range, from -100% to 300%, can be applied to all desktop keyword bids within a given ad group for searches made on mobile devices. The campaign level mobile bid adjustment will be ignored if an ad group level bid adjustment has been set.

What It Means: The enhancement to allow group-level mobile bid adjustments provides search marketers with additional control over their enhanced campaigns and mobile performance. For advertisers that follow account best practices, where ad groups contain a small set of like or similar performing keywords, this enhancement should meet the requirements for most paid search programs. Although some search marketers may long for keyword-level mobile bid adjustments, keep in mind that the goal of enhanced campaigns is to simplify the way advertisers manage their paid search campaigns across device, location, and time of day. Group-level adjustments appear to be a reasonable and effective compromise.

{ifmobile} and {ifnotmobile} ValueTrack Parameter

Before this Announcement: Search marketers could only leverage one landing page across all devices rather than have the ability to direct users to optimized landing pages based on device. The other option was to remove keyword level destination URLs in favor of creative level URLs.

The Ask from Marketers: Screen sizes and user behavior varies significantly between desktop and mobile devices. Presenting users with a device-specific landing page is critical to improving the user experience and maximizing paid search performance. Consequently, advertisers wanted the ability to define two destination URLs at the keyword level in order to present the most relevant content and optimal experience based on the device the user is searching on.

Device Optimized Website - NY Times

The Updated Approach: The {ifmobile} and {ifnotmobile} ValueTrack parameters will enable search marketers to direct users to device-specific landing pages at the keyword level. Additionally, these new parameters enable the measurement of the effectiveness of campaigns by device for advertisers who are unable to leverage the {device} ValueTrack parameter.

What It Means: The ability to assign a device-specific landing page falls directly in line with Google’s approach to a multi-device world—helping advertisers reach consumers with the right ad experience based on device, location, and time of day. As users move across device, this enhancement will enable search marketers to remain relevant and engaging.

Google Is Listening

Clearly, Google is open to enhancing enhanced campaigns based on industry feedback. However, I wouldn’t expect any further changes to be announced ahead of the migration deadline as advertisers nail down their migration plans and establish revised best practices before heading into the holiday season. In order for enhanced campaigns to be a win-win-win solution (for Google, the consumer, and the advertiser), Google will need to continue collecting and applying market feedback, especially once all advertisers have migrated over to enhanced campaigns.

Google’s New “Enhanced Campaigns”: What It Means for Search Marketers

By February 7th, 2013

Yesterday Google announced the rollout of enhanced campaigns, a major AdWords product release that attempts to simplify the management of campaigns across devices. With enhanced campaigns, search marketers will be able to target consumers based on device, location, and time of day through a single campaign. However, for search marketers that currently leverage separate desktop, tablet, and mobile campaigns, Google’s enhanced campaigns will remove some of the control and transparency we’re used to having. Additional details on enhanced campaigns can be found here.

What Does This Mean? To understand the implications of Google’s enhanced campaigns, let’s review the benefits and concerns.

Benefits

  • Mobile preferred creative: Search marketers will now be able to create mobile preferred ad creative that are delivered to users based on their device or when they’re searching.
  • Consolidated and simplified bid management: Search marketers can now leverage bid adjustments to manage bids across devices, locations, time of day, and more from within a single campaign.

Google Enhanced Campaigns Locations Bids

  • Enhanced ad extensions management: Search marketers can now assign ad extensions at the ad group level and display ads across devices with the appropriate ad creative, sitelink, app, or extension, without having to manage multiple campaigns for every combination of device, location, and time of day. Furthermore, ad extensions can now be scheduled to turn on and off, such as during times when phone operators are unavailable.
  • Advanced sitelinks management: Search marketers can now report on the performance metrics for individual ad sitelinks and monitor their approval status.
  • New conversion types: Search marketers will now have the ability to track and report on calls and app downloads, enabling the optimization of campaigns based on these conversion types.

Concerns

  • Device specific budgets: In combing all devices into a single campaign, budgets will also be combined, eliminating the ability for search marketers to set separate, device-optimized budgets across desktop-, tablet-, and mobile-only campaigns.
  • Mobile-only campaigns: Without the ability to opt out of desktop/tablet device targeting, search marketers will no longer be able to leverage mobile-only campaigns. This may significantly impact advertisers, like mobile app and gaming companies, who only wish to advertise on mobile devices.
  • Tablet specific optimization strategies: With tablet device targeting now combined with desktop, search marketers who have specific tablet strategies in place will lose that functionality.
  • Bidding on mobile keywords: Since mobile bids are boosted by a percentage of desktop/tablet bids at the campaign level, search marketers can no longer calculate individual mobile keyword bids based on performance. Furthermore, bidding to a preferred position for specific mobile keywords to combat the limited SERP real estate on mobile devices is no longer possible.
  • Bid multipliers: The requirement to layer bid multipliers based on device, location, and time of day introduces significant complexities for calculating optimal keyword bids. Furthermore, since bid adjustments are applied at the campaign level, separate time of day multipliers can’t be set for separate locations. For example: +20% for New York and +50% on Saturdays, and -20% for Chicago and -50% on Saturdays.
  • Targeting mobile operating systems: Search marketers can no longer target campaigns to a specific mobile device or device operating system (i.e. iPhone, HTC, iOS, Android).

Google plans to roll out enhanced campaigns across advertisers over the next few weeks. As a result, advertisers may not have immediate access to this feature within their accounts. By mid-2013, all campaigns are expected to have been transitioned to enhanced campaigns.

2 Ways to Decrease Your First Page Minimum Bid

By June 6th, 2012

If you’ve ever browsed through your AdWords account, you’ve most likely encountered Google’s pesky keyword status, “Below first page bid”. This estimate is based on your keyword’s Quality Score and competition, and is the bid you’ll likely need to set in order for your creative to show on the first page of search results. Though these keywords are active, they’re most likely missing out on a large chunk of impressions, and potential clicks and conversions. Since this first page bid is directly linked to Quality Score, marketers that regularly experience high first page bid estimates will likely benefit from improvements to their keyword’s Quality Score. Today we’ll review two strategies for decreasing your first page minimum bid.

AdWords First Page Bid Estimate Keyword Status

 

 

     

     AdWords

 

Marin First Page Bid Estimate Keyword Status

 


     Marin Enterprise

 

When adding a new keyword, you’ll notice that Google automatically assigns an initial Quality Score. Whether that score is high or low, it’s determined by the keyword’s historical performance for other advertisers who have targeted that same keyword. As a result of this assigned Quality Score, your initial keyword bid might be below the first page bid estimate. As a best practice, be sure to check the status of all your newly added keywords and ensure that you’ve set appropriate bids that are above the first page minimum. It’s critical that marketers do this, since a keyword’s initial performance will dictate whether or not its Quality Scores move above or below the assigned score. Give your keyword bids an initial boost to help facilitate a higher ad position. A higher ad position promotes a higher click-through-rate (CTR), which remains one of the most significant factors in improving Quality Score. Once your keywords have established their own Quality Score, hopefully better than what was inherited, reassess your bids. With higher Quality Scores, your first page bid estimates will have dropped, allowing you to bid less for the same ad position.

Google Quality Score Breakdown

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

For keywords that have an established Quality Score, decreasing the first page minimum bid can be a long and difficult task. In addition to setting an appropriate bid above the first page minimum, marketers must take the necessary steps to increase keyword relevance to promote higher CTRs. Create an organized campaign structure that promotes granular groups containing a highly focused set of keywords. In addition, generate relevant and engaging creative to support your keyword set. Finally, assign appropriate landing pages that focus on providing the best customer experience. These tried and true best practices not only ensure that relevancy is maintained from impression to conversion, but will result in Quality Score improvements and decreases to first page minimum bids.

For additional best practices on improving Quality Score, click here.

Google Updates Changes to Rotation Settings

By June 1st, 2012

Last month Google announced a significant tweak to their “rotate evenly” creative setting. Specifically, campaigns using this setting would only rotate creative evenly for 30 days after the last creative was enabled or edited. After the 30-day period, creative would automatically optimize for clicks. This change caused quite an uproar within the search marketing community. Amongst concerns over the lack of an opt-out for this change and the limitations of a 30-day window for longer creative tests, Google responded today with an update to the expected changes.

In addition to providing search marketers with an opt-out of this change, Google will expand the even rotation period from 30 days to 90 days. Both changes will go into effect on June 11, 2012.

As a note, if Google experiences a large demand to opt-out over the next few weeks, the option will become available directly in the AdWords interface.

For more information on this update, click here.

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