Google AdWords – No Longer a Game for Amateurs

There was a tiime when anyone with a real or hobby website could have a go on Google AdWords.  We remember that time.  And Google seems to be nostalgic for it too judging by the number of ‘£50 Off’ vouchers they keep on sending us - presumably to tempt the national brands that now dominate our client portfolio into ‘having a go’ at PPC?

Things have changed.  So much so that one of our team recently described using AdWords as

“playing 3-dimensional chess in the dark with one hand tied behind your back”.

Anyone thinking that setting up an AdWords account is nothing more than adding some keywords, picking an ad, choosing a budget and then BOOM you’re off -will be sadly mistaken.  You will be able to get started but your ROI will likely be awful!  Google will be very happy.

Nowadays, you will also need to consider the following:

  • Max CPC
  • Keyword match types
  • Ad Extensions
  • Account Structure
  • Negative Keywords
  • Geo-Targeting
  • Ad Scheduling
  • Mobile Targeting
  • Google Display Network

These are to name just a few.  And then think of the combinations.  Throw a wrong combination of switches and you will get a short circuit that will blackout your ads.

The other issue is that Google are constantly changing the landscape of AdWords, changing things in a way that will certainly catch out someone who is not managing PPC accounts on a daily basis.  This way you can find your PPC account ‘sabotaged’ without you having done anything but neglect it.

Some of the major changes we have recently found (and this is not an exhaustive list) are:

  • Incorporation of Google Analytics Metrics. For the PPC manager this is something heaven-sent as previously it meant that constantly jumping from analysing your campaign performance in the AdWords interface and then the Analytics one.   We believe that in the near future, there won’t be one Analytics account and one AdWords account; they will be merged into one interface.

  • Auction Insight - This is a really smart measurement as it allows you to measure how visible your competition is and how you compare against them.  If for example you are bidding on ‘tennis shoes’, Auction Insight will tell you how often you are appearing for this search term (impression share) compared to your competitors.  It will also show you how often you appear above your competitors when you are both showing together.

  • Google Shopping - This is something that is coming soon to the UK and has already been implemented in the US.  For more information please see our other blog ‘To pay, or not to pay, that is the question’.  In a nut-shell, Google are taking away their free click model and moving to a paid model.  This has some interesting pros and cons for advertisers.

  • Dynamic Search Ads - Match ads within searches based on your website, not keywords.

These are just a few changes - and we haven’t mentioned ad rotation changes, geo-targeting and Google Matching Options.

Your ads will still run without considering these options, but having them in your arsenal will help you make more informed decisions and allow you to get the best out of your budget.

In our experience Google doesn’t always tell you about these changes, and it is only through the day-to-day management of our PPC accounts here at Pull Digital, and keeping abreast of recent articles that we are able to provide our clients with the best possible advice.

In summary – Google AdWords is no longer a DIY job.  We wouldn’t let anyone loose on paid search who wasn’t a full-time certified professional.  Would you?

If you want the attention of a full-time certified professional contact us now on 01483 424460 or info@pulldigital.com.

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