AdWords new feature: message extensions

adwords-click-to-message

Google is releasing a new ad extension: message extension.

What are message extensions?

Message extensions allow users to connect with your business through messaging.

How do message extensions work?

When users tap the texting icon in your ad from their mobiles, their messaging apps will be launched, allowing them to send messages to your business.

When someone tap the texting icon, you are charged for a click (just as if the user tapped on your ad to go to your website).

What are the message extensions’ requirements?

  • Message extensions are only shown to people on phones capable of sending and receiving messages, so they are only available on mobiles.
  • Your business has to have a phone number that is able to receive and send text messages (message extensions won’t work with your landline).

How to set up message extensions?

Google is rolling out the feature, so message extensions might not be able in all AdWords accounts yet but they will be soon.

Just as other ad extensions, message extensions are easily set up in AdWords.

They can be set at campaign or ad group level.

You will find them in the ad extensions tab, under “Message extensions” in the drop-down menu.

google-adwords-message-extension

To create a message extension you will need to add:

  • Business Name (up to 25 characters).
  • Text phone number (the number that people will send messages to).
  • Extension text (up to 35 characters – this text will appear alongside your ad, you could use a message such as “Text us” or “Message us”).
  • Message text (up to 100 characters – that’s where you can include a pre-written message to make it easier for mobile users in a hurry to contact you).
  • Don’t forget to schedule your message extensions in the advanced options so that they only show up when your team is able to respond. If you can’t reply to messages straight away or at weekends, consider using an auto responder stating you will reply later.

What are the benefits of message extensions?

  • Mobile messaging is part of our daily life. In a recent survey performed by Google, 65% of consumers said they would consider using messaging to connect with a business to get information about a service or product.
  • In today’s mobile world it gives users an easy way to text your business and start a conversation when it is more convenient for them.
  • They can help you grow your business by giving potential customers another option to reach you.
  • They give you more exposure with no extra AdWords cost.
  • They are easily set up.
  • Just like any other ad extension, message extensions can improve your click-through-rate, ad’s relevancy and quality score.

 

Images’ source: Pixabay

AdWords individual device bidding: what is going to change and how to get prepared

individual-device-bidding

Another change announced by Google during their May performance summit was individual device bid adjustments. Although this change is not as big as the new expanded text ads, you definitely need to start thinking about it and how you are going to assess and set bids on each device.

So forget everything you learned about enhanced campaigns, Google will roll out the possibility to bid on each device individually in a few months.

What is changing with individual device bidding?

Flashback to 2013 when Google launched enhanced campaigns on AdWords. While until then advertisers were creating separate campaigns for each device, with enhanced campaigns Google asked advertisers to stop creating different campaigns for each device and to create a single campaign for all devices, setting a base desktop bid, and offering them the possibility to set a bid multiplier (a positive or negative percentage of your base desktop bid) on mobiles. But only on mobiles… So the big problem that advertisers have faced since is the impossibility to set any bid at all on tablets, being unable to either bid more aggressively on tablets or either opt out of those devices for good.

Google must have heard the advertisers’ complaints as they will now be offering individual device bidding. Basically it will work as enhanced campaigns, except that now:

  • You will be able to decide on what device your base bid will be set (with enhanced campaigns the base bid was automatically set on desktops).
  • You will be able to set bid modifiers on the devices of your choice: desktops, mobiles or tablets (with enhanced campaigns you could only set bid modifiers on mobiles, and tablets bids were automatically joined to desktops bids).
  • You will be able to bid more aggressively as the bid ranges will be extended from -100% to +900% (with enhanced campaigns you could only set bid adjustments from -100% to +300%).

What are the benefits of this change for advertisers?

The main benefit is that advertisers will now be able to bid separately on tablets, with the bids on those devices no longer joined to desktops. This is a huge change. You will be able to properly analyze the traffic and performance on tablets and you will then be able to decide to opt out completely of tablets should this be the right decision for you.

As stated above you will also be able to set your base bid on the device of your choice. It might be a huge change for businesses that get most of their traffic on mobiles (as it had been predicted, mobile searches have now overtaken desktop searches).

Once again Google didn’t decide to make this change happen now for no reason, and of course this is happening in today’s mobile-first world.

With this change advertisers will be able to create more tailored and relevant ads that will reach different customers, and that should naturally increase their CTR.

To summarize Google is offering advertisers more power and control. Happy days!

When will this change happen?

Google didn’t communicate any exact date yet, just stating “in the coming months”. That’s why we advise you to already collect all the information of your customers’ behavior and your campaigns’ performance on tablets, and we will keep you updated when more information is given.

How to get prepared for the change?

Getting prepared for the change will be the tricky part.

I am sure most advertisers won’t have any problem setting their bids on mobiles and desktops, and I would advise most of you to set the base bid on mobiles as for the first time mobile searches have now overtaken desktop searches (except if your website is not mobile friendly yet, but in that case I would strongly advise you to forget about individual device bidding for now and to seriously only focus on getting your website mobile ready asap).

But what about setting bids on tablets? Since enhanced campaigns launch in 2013, we have been leaving tablets aside as we didn’t have any other choice. So what now?

We know for sure that users’ behavior on tablets is way different than on desktops, just the way users use their mobiles differently than their computers. In fact tablets probably stand in between mobiles and desktops, like a hybrid device. Think about your own usage. When, where and under circumstances would you use one device instead of another? For my part, I only perform searches on my desktop when I am at work on a break, or at evening times or weekends when my PC is turned on and I am really looking for something (probably more about to buy something or book a holiday for example), so I can take advantage of a big screen. The rest of the times, whether if it is to just check my mail or find a quick information, I would generally use my mobile because I would be on the go (on my way to work, enjoying some time out…). No wonder mobiles are overtaking desktops, it is the ultimate on the go device! I do own a tablet, but to be honest I really use it on very specific occasions, it is the device that I would bring on holidays for example along with my mobile, to be able to have a larger screen, watch videos, take pictures, without having to bring my PC. The rest of the time, my tablet just stands in my sitting room, and I might use it to look at something quickly if my computer is turned off and I want to check something on a larger screen than my phone.

So besides assuming that most users will probably use their tablets more in the evening times when watching TV for example or lying in bed before turning the light off or first thing in the morning before getting up (while I do believe that some users also use them on the go if they have a long distance to commute for example), what information can we turn to in order to have a glimpse of how users search on tablets and to know how to bid on those devices?

Although enhanced campaigns didn’t allow advertisers to set separate bids on tablets, AdWords still at least shows statistics on how users do behave on each separate device: computers, mobiles and tablets. If you go in your AdWords account, select all campaigns level on the left sidebar (but you can also select one campaign if you want to have an insight on the behaviour by device on a specific campaign), go to the settings tab and then select devices, you will have a glimpse of the performance split by computers, mobiles and tablets:

adwords-performance-by-device

You can then customize the columns to select the data you want to include, and then download that report. Once that report is downloaded, you can filter by device and see how the CTR, CPC’s, conversions… change on each device.

I set a 30 days frame and downloaded the following report for one account as an example:

adwords-performance-by-device-example

As you can see and this is no surprise here, the performance is different for each device. The largest numbers of conversions happen on computers, with the lowest CPA, while mobiles and tablets don’t bring a lot of conversions and have the highest CPA. However the position is good on tablets, and average CPC’s lower than on desktops. That’s the good news about it, just as on mobiles, CPC’s are lower on tablets so even if the devices don’t bring you a lot of conversions, at least they won’t spend all your advertising budget.

However, the performance above is just an example and if it does make sense that this account performs better on computers, don’t forget that we are in the mobile era, so I am sure plenty of accounts will see good traffic and performance coming from tablets. The important thing to do is to evaluate that traffic so that once the new individual device bidding is available, you are ready to set your bids and take full advantage of this new feature. So don’t waste time and start analyzing your performance by device now!

 

Images’ source: Pixabay

AdWords new expanded ads are now live!

 

It happened sooner than expected while no account manager was really aware of it: you have now the ability to create new expanded ads in AdWords.

How to create new expanded ads?

As you probably know already, those new expanded ads contain:

  • Two 30 characters headline (compared to one 25 characters headline before) so 60 characters in total, that’s more than the double amount of characters allowed before!
  • One 80 characters description line (compared to two 35 characters description lines before), that’s 10 more characters allowed than old ads.

You can now create new expanded ads directly through your AdWords interface. If you go on the “Ads” tab on your AdWords account and choose to create a new ad by clicking on the red button “+ AD” and you then select “Text ad” in the drop-down menu, this will automatically give you the opportunity to create a new expanded ad as you can see in the screenshot hereunder. If you want to create an ad with the old format instead, you will need to click on the option “Switch back to standard text ads”.

Create Expanded Ads AdWords

Google has also released a new version of AdWords Editor for the occasion, and if you download the latest update of Editor you will be able to create new expanded ads straight away (I have to say that Google really made a huge effort here to make it easy for account managers as you usually need to wait a few weeks or even months for any new change to be supported in AdWords Editor). Once the latest version is installed, you will see “Expanded text ads” listed under the “Ads” menu as you can see in the screenshot hereunder.

Create Expanded Ads AdWords Editor

What is the deadline to create new expanded ads and what is going to happen during the transition period?

We are now in a transition period where you can still create and edit old AdWords text ads until 26th October. After that date, you won’t be able to create or edit those old ads anymore, so it will be mandatory to use expanded ads if you want to change messaging or create new ads. However, it doesn’t mean that your old ads will stop showing after 26th October, they might still run for a while along new expanded ads (no extra information has been given yet about what will happen to old ads after 26th October, except that you won’t be able to update them anymore).

What is sure is that if you do create new expanded ads now, you can still keep your old ads running along with them, and I would advise you to do that so you can test new expanded ads and see what could be improved.

When should you create your new expanded ads?

Even if you technically can wait until 26th October to create new expanded ads, I would advise you to start creating them now and as soon as possible, for several reasons:

  • If you are an account manager dealing with several accounts, you might need to rewrite hundreds or thousands of ads. This is not going to be done in one day. If you start now, you will have the time to come with a plan and a schedule, which will make things smoother and less stressful that if you leave everything until the very last day.
  • As stated above, if you create new expanded ads now, you can also keep your old ads running during that transition period and take advantage of that period to test your new ads, as it might need time and lot of adjustments before your new expanded ads work as good as your old ad texts.
  • A lot of advertisers will leave creating new expanded ads until September or so, as we are now in a transition period where both old ads and new expanded ads are allowed to run along each other. Which format do you think will get the more attention between the new expanded ads with their 140 characters and the old ads with their 90 characters? That’s right, now is the right time to get your expanded ads ready and gain advantage over your competitors who are not using them yet!

What are the best practices to write new expanded ads?

Here are a few tips to create new expanded ads:

  • You should take advantage of the new full characters limit. Don’t just use your former description line 1 and use it as headline 2. You should rethink your entire ads and write new versions, creating deeper messages. Try and focus on needs and benefits, including concepts important to your customers that will make you stand out among your competitors.
  • You should focus on the headlines as they will appear in blue and be the most viewable part of your ads. Write your most important messages in your headlines. You should particularly focus on headline 1 as there might be a line break between your two headlines, especially on mobile devices, or your headline 2 might appear on same line as headline 1 but be truncated (during the tests a lot of users already complained about that and Google advised to limit both headlines to 33 characters maximum to be sure headlines are not truncated, which is a bit extreme!).
  • Use the path fields and add your top keywords to display URL to make it clear for users that they will end on a relevant landing page.
  • Mobile preferred ads are no longer supported with new expanded text ads, so you should use messaging that speak to users on all devices. You can also choose to add a mobile specific URL, so if you have landing pages that are best optimized for mobiles, don’t forget to use that feature.
  • You should create multiple versions of expanded ads and test them. Remember how it took you years to figure out what messaging was working best in your old ads? You are back to square one now, and you should start A/B testing different versions of your new expanded ads.
  • You should keep your old ads running along with new expanded ones, and not pause your old ads directly. As stated above the current transition period is ideal for testing. Keep your old ads running so if your new expanded ads don’t perform as well at the beginning you have time to adjust and test between different versions of expanded ads to see what works best.
  • You should check your ad extensions and update them if necessary. Now that you are allowed more characters in the new expanded ads, you might add messages that you were before using in your ads extensions because you were limited by characters in old ads. You therefore have to make sure that the message you now use in your new ads don’t repeat in your old ad extensions.

What about display?

Following the release of new expanded ads on the search network, Google has also announced that a new ad format will be ready for display soon: responsive ads.

As for the expanded ads on the search network, the new responsive ads on the display network will have more characters:

  • Two headlines: the first headline will contain up to 25 characters and the second one 90 characters (compared to only one 25 characters headline before). That’s 90 characters more.
  • One 90 characters description line (compared to two 35 characters description lines before). That’s 20 more characters allowed.

 

Those new responsive ads are rolling out at the moment, if they are not available in your account yet just be patient a few more weeks.

 

Images’ source: Google AdWords interface / Editor

5 Remarketing Audience Mistakes You Should Avoid

Leveraging remarketing campaigns can be an excellent way to boost your conversion rate, increase search traffic for your brand, and reduce shopping cart abandonment. Instead of having only a single interaction to convince browsers to convert, by utilizing remarketing you’ll be able to serve ads to the same targeted audience multiple times.

remarketing-mistakes

But because remarketing add complexity to your digital marketing campaigns, it can be more challenging to optimize your results by using remarketing. Here are six common remarketing mistakes that many advertisers make when developing their remarketing campaigns, and our take on how you can avoid them.

1. Failing to Remove Converted Users from Your Target List

One of the major benefits of well-run remarketing campaigns is an increase in new business. Oftentimes, advertisers fail to take these converted leads or customers off their remarketing target list. Once a user converts, you must make sure that they’ll be removed from your remarketing list. This practice helps avoid wasting ad spend on serving ads to existing customers.

However, it’s important that you do not omit your converted audience from your retargeting list indefinitely. There are some common circumstances where you can and should advertise to previously converted users. If you remove every converted user from your target account list, you risk preventing potential repeat purchasers from seeing ads for additional products and services. Instead, set time frame for your converted user blocks to “expire” after a set amount of time — many experts suggest somewhere between 45-90 days — before they can be advertised to again.

2. Cannibalizing Your Own Audience

If you have multiple retargeting campaigns running simultaneously, it is critical to set up your lists so that your audience doesn’t get targeted by multiple campaigns simultaneously. Targeted prospects might end up seeing too many ads, or they may see ads for a campaign that is not the best fit for their needs. Additionally by “cannibalizing” your own audience, you’ll be skewing your campaign performance data and won’t be able to gauge how well your campaigns are performing on their own.

When you set up your remarketing campaigns, be sure to subtract campaign lengths from each other so that viewers are not served ads for multiple campaigns simultaneously. For example, you may set one campaign to run for 7 days. In order to make sure that the audience for this campaign doesn’t receive ads from your 2-week campaign as well, you should set the parameters to the latter campaign for 14 days minus 7 days.

3. Flooding Your Audience with Remarketing Ads

No one likes feeling like someone is following them around online, and there’s no better way to make prospective buyers feel like you’re chasing them across the Internet than for them to see your ads everywhere they go. Oversaturation can have a negative impact on the success of your remarketing campaigns.

Regulate the number of ads you serve to your audience to keep your brand, products or services top-of-mind, but not so much that they become ineffective. Set a frequency cap on your campaigns to avoid over-serving ads to your audience. There’s no magic number for the correct number of engagements for any given range of time, so make sure to A/B test your frequency caps to find what’s best for your audience.

4. Targeting Too Narrow of an Audience (or Too Broad)

Retargeting is often seen as a way to hone in on a specific subset of your audience to increase conversions. As a result, advertisers often fall into the trap of chasing after too-specific of an audience. AdWords requires at least 100 active visitors in the last 30 days for Display Network remarketing lists, and at least 1000 for search remarketing lists. On the other hand, not everyone who visits your site will be a perfect fit for your services. If you try to broaden your remarketing list parameters to target everyone who lands on your website, you’ll end up wasting ad spend chasing after bad leads.

If you aren’t getting valuable results from your remarketing campaigns, it may be time to reevaluate whether you’re targeting too specific or too broad of an audience. For example, plenty of names are being added to your remarketing lists, but none are converting, your audience may be too broad. Finding the best parameters for your remarketing campaigns can be challenging. Oftentimes, working with PPC professionals can be the fastest way to hone in on the correct parameters for your remarketing campaigns so you can see results more quickly.

5. Setting Campaign Time Durations Incorrectly

AdWords sets the default length of remarketing campaigns for 30 days, but this doesn’t mean that 30 days is necessarily the best length of time for remarketing success. You can shorten this, or you can extend it up to the maximum of 540 days. However, if you cut your campaigns too short, and you might not get the exposure you need. Let them run too long, and you’ll likely see diminishing returns for your advertising dollar and end up wasting advertising dollars.

The most efficient duration of your campaigns depends on the audience’s buying behavior. If you’re selling real estate or other goods that require a longer buying cycle, you may need a longer duration for effective retargeting. For smaller or more urgent purchases, such as concert tickets or certain legal services, you might get the best returns from campaigns that are only a few days in length. There’s no universally “optimized” campaign length, but testing out different campaign durations will help you find the best fit for your market.

Remarketing with Webrageous

Working with the PPC experts at Webrageous can help you ensure that your remarketing campaigns give you the optimal results. Our team of PPC managers has worked with many clients to successfully improve their conversion rates and build their business with remarketing campaigns. To learn more about how Webrageous can develop and manage a more effective remarketing strategy for your business, contact us today.

Image Source: Pixabay

Price extensions for mobile ads: AdWords new feature

price-extensions

Google has just released new ad extensions: price extensions.

What are price extensions?

They are new extensions that advertisers can use in their AdWords mobile ads. It allows them to easily and quickly show prices for different services or products.

What are the price extensions’ requirements?

  • They are only available on mobile ads for now (so you need to have a mobile friendly website).
  • You need to set up a minimum of 3 price extensions and a maximum of 8.
  • Your mobile ad needs to appear in the top ad position (otherwise it won’t be eligible for this new extension).
  • They are only available in English at the moment.

How to set up price extensions?

Just as other ad extensions, price extensions are easily set up in AdWords.

They can be set at account, campaign or ad group level.

You will find them in the ad extensions tab, under “Price extensions” in the drop-down menu.

Price extensions set up

To create a price extension you will need to add:

  • A header (clickable title, up to 25 characters).
  • A description (up to 25 characters).
  • The actual price.
  • A final URL (the landing page related to the extension – the same landing page can be used for a set of ad extensions).

What are the benefits of price extensions?

  • They give extra information to potential customers with minimal work. You don’t need to include your price in your ad anymore and you can use that extra space to focus on other unique selling points in your ads.
  • They are one click away to conversions: when users click on your price extension, they are redirected to your website straight away.
  • They are easily set up, updated and can be used for special offers.
  • They are flexible and customizable.

 

Images source: Pixabay

Google Adwords Campaign Settings: What You Need to Know

 

adwords campaign settings

Just getting started with your AdWords campaigns? AdWords offers its users a wide array of settings to adjust, giving them a large amount of control over their campaigns. Campaign settings can feel overwhelming at first, but they are an important part of running successful PPC campaigns. Here are a few tips on getting campaign settings right from the beginning so you can start seeing results from your AdWords campaigns more quickly.

Adjusting Network Settings

Start with “Search Only”

AdWords can serve ads on the Google Search Network as well as the Display Network. While your first instinct might be to serve ads as many places as possible, the Display Network will deplete budget your campaign budget quickly. If you do not have experience with AdWords already, stick with “Search Only” until you’re more familiar with running campaigns.

It’s important to note that Google’s “Search Partner Network” is also included in the default “Search Only” settings. Unless you have a heavily restricted budget, it’s worth leaving this setting on, as the Search Partner Network can bring an additional 20-60% of clicks to your campaigns.

Reaching Your Audience

Check Your Location Settings

Reaching as many people as possible may seem like the best way to boost your business. In some cases, such as for eCommerce websites who can serve a geographically diverse customer base, this might be true. But for many businesses, including those the legal industry and other service-based industries, you’ll want to focus your PPC strategy on reaching viewers who are in the specific area you serve, whether that’s a city, state or region.

To adjust the location of your AdWords audience, expand the “Location Settings” tab to see options for targeting more specific audiences. There are both inclusive and exclusive options for location settings. In addition to focusing your ads only on people in specific locations, you also might want to exclude people in locations that are irrelevant to your needs. As with negative keywords, this excluding specific locations can be an effective way to whittle your audience down to the best fits for your business and avoid wasting ad spend.

Adjust Language Settings for Your Audience

The U.S. has over 40 million native Spanish speakers, and countless other non-English speakers. If your audience is likely to make searches in languages other than English, the appropriate AdWords can help you reach them more effectively. A key thing to remember here is that Google serves ads based on the user’s interface language settings — not the language your ads are in. 

By adjusting your target language settings to include browsers whose language settings are in the language you want to target, you’ll have a better chance of reaching them. Even if your ads are all in English, this can be used as a tactic for reaching bilingual audiences, who may have their browsers set to another language. Another thing to note: Google recommends setting up different campaigns for each language to help keep your campaigns organized and focused.

Optimizing Your Ads

Enable “All Features”

Adwords Ad Extensions are some of the most useful tools that AdWords advertisers have at their disposal. When used effectively, they have the potential to significantly increase the profitability of their campaigns. Extensions make ads more visually appealing and can even improve your ad rank. To get the most out of Ad Extensions and other AdWords features, make sure you enable “All Features.” Ad Scheduling, Dynamic Search ads and other features also fall under this category. These features can give you more powerful advertising bang for your buck.

Optimize Ad Rotations to Collect Data

You have several options for how your ads cycle. The default setting is “Optimize for clicks: show ads expected to provide more clicks.” However, since clicks aren’t always the best metric for campaign success, you may not want to leave this setting untouched when you launch your campaign.

When you first start running ads, using “rotate indefinitely” over other settings can help you collect valuable data about what messaging gets the most clicks, conversions, and other interactions. Over time, you may opt to switch to another setting, such as “Optimize for conversions” (if you use AdWords conversion tracking) or “Rotate evenly” (if you plan to manually track and tweak your ads based on performance).

Improving Your Campaigns: Always Be Testing

One of the biggest mistakes you can make with AdWords is to create your ads, set your keywords, adjust your campaign settings once — and never touch them again. The “perfect” combination of AdWords campaign settings may vary from company to company. As a result, building successful AdWords campaigns requires continuous experimentation and tweaking. Including a healthy amount of A/B testing in your regular campaign management can help you find the right messaging, audience and campaign settings to optimize your results.

Jumpstarting Your AdWords Campaigns with Webrageous

Working with an experienced PPC management firm like Webrageous is one of the best ways to develop more successful PPC campaigns. Our team of PPC managers has years of experience running campaigns, and we can share our expertise with you to help you create campaigns that convert more effectively, whether you’re making your first foray into PPC marketing, or if you’re looking to give your AdWords campaigns a boost. Contact Webrageous today to learn more about our services for optimizing and managing successful AdWords campaigns.

Image Source: Pixabay

5 PPC Features for AdWords to Try in 2016

adwords-PPC-features

The year is halfway through, but there’s still plenty of time to boost your PPC performance in 2016. If your campaigns feel stale or aren’t getting you the results you need to build your business, it might be time to try some of the powerful but often under-used features that AdWords has to offer. To get the most out of your AdWords account this year, be sure to try these 5 PPC features before 2016 is over.

Customer Match

Account-based marketing and sales are gaining a good deal of traction in the marketing world right now. AdWords Customer Match helps you translate these identity-based marketing strategies to PPC. Identity-based marketing can be a highly impactful strategy for building your business. A study by the Alterra Group found that 65% of marketers say that account-based marketing is an effective way to attract new clients.

If you have a list of email addresses of prospective clients you would like to target, AdWords Customer Match allows you to input email lists of prospects you’d like to focus your campaigns on reaching. Once you’ve established your lists, Google will serve your target prospects custom ads on Gmail, YouTube, and other channels to create a buyer journey tailor-made for them.

Remarketing Lists For Search Ads

While known prospects can be targeted with Customer Match, finding ways to reach unknown prospects who visit your site multiple times is also critical. Remarketing is another powerful tool in the advertiser’s arsenal. Some companies have seen stellar results — one watch retailer saw 1300% ROI by leveraging remarketing with Google.

AdWords remarketing lists for search ads on give advertisers the ability to customize search ads for people who have previously visited their site by tailoring bids and ads to recurring visitors’ browsing habits. Remarketing lists can help to maximize your budget. They allow you to bid on keywords you normally don’t bid on when previous visitors make relevant search queries. Remarketing lists also allow you to optimize bids on existing keywords specifically for previous visitors. In industries with highly competitive and expensive keywords, such as legal and insurance, remarketing lists allow advertisers to make the most of their spend and reserve bids on expensive keywords for prospects who are more likely to convert

Video Ads

Many advertising agencies say that online video ads are as effective — or more effective — than TV ad spots. Leveraging audiovisual content online can be a good method for catching your audience’s attention. One study found that 80% of users recalled the content of a video ad they saw 30 days prior. Do your text ads have the same impact?

Google offers TrueView video ads to serve ads to customers both on YouTube and as video sidebar ads. One major drawback of using video ads is that, compared to text and static image ads, video ads can require much higher production investments. However, AdWords offers an ad gallery with pre-created video templates for advertisers to use to build simple videos at no cost, reducing traditional barriers to getting your video ads up and running.

Call-Only Ads

We often advocate using call only ad campaigns to drive business. The value of a customer making a call and interacting with you directly is generally far greater than the value of a click or a purely digital conversion. This is especially important when accounting for the fact that over half of Google search traffic comes from mobile devices. Call-only ad campaigns can reduce the friction required for prospective customers to make a call and increase your conversion rate in a meaningful way.

Call-only campaigns are a good way to induce calls and target prospects that are ready to have a conversation with your business, and can often provide better overall ROI than other conversion types. In order to best leverage call-only ads, advertisers must adhere to some best practices unique to call-only campaigns. These best practices include using call-focused CTAs, running ads only during times your customers are most likely to call (and when you are most likely to be able to pick up the phone), and leveraging keyword types such as broad match modifier and phrase match that will help you reach your customers most effectively.

Ad Customizers

Ad customizers dynamically update ad content with tailored messages and time-sensitive CTAs. This functionality allows you to do things like run a sales countdown or offering discounted goods or services on a timer to capture browser attention. Ad customizers also enable you to serve multiple offers to the same customer.

You can display multiple products or services in a single ad within different parameters. For example, a camping supply retailer might serve different camping equipment offers to searchers who searched for the term “camping equipment,” while also circulating ads for different tent models if the browser searched specifically for “camping tents.” As with keyword insertion, you can customize results for specific regions or locations. These tactics can help your prospective customers know that you offer exactly what they’re looking for, and increase the likelihood that they will engage with your ads.

Taking Your PPC Campaigns to the Next Level with Webrageous

If you’re ready to experiment with new ways to boost your campaign performance, consider working with a PPC management firm. Webrageous has been helping companies build their business with PPC for over 10 years. We have extensive experience working with all AdWords features and can leverage them very effectively for our clients. Get the benefit of our experience managing and experimenting with PPC campaigns to try out new PPC features more successfully when you work with Webrageous for PPC management. To learn more how we can make your PPC campaigns more successful in 2016, contact us today for your risk-free consultation.

Image Source: Pixabay

 

AdWords Editor new version

A few weeks ago, Google released a brand new version of the AdWords Editor interface (version 11.4), and along with it some new features that will make the life of AdWords users easier.

AdWords Editor 11.4.3

New “Add campaign button”

One very interesting new feature is that you can now create a new campaign faster, with a drop down menu added on the “add campaign” button that allows you to select straight away the type of campaign you want to create: search, display, shopping or video. Please note however than when you create a new campaign this way, some default settings are applied (example: language targeting is set to “all” for shopping campaigns), so make sure to double check the settings so you don’t have any bad surprise.

You can now create display mobile app installs directly from AdWords Editor too.

Capture

New section for Ad extensions

But the main changes have been applied to the extensions. First, ads and ad extensions are now separated in different sections in AdWords Editor, which brings more clarity in the menus.

AdWords Editor ads and ads extensions

App extensions

Along with that, and it is probably the new feature that AdWords users will love the most, it is now finally possible to create and edit app extensions and review extensions in AdWords Editor, as they are now both available from the Shared Library.

Frequency capping

Last but not least, it is now possible to set up frequency capping through AdWords Editor, which allows you to limit the number of times a same person will see your ad on the display network. The frequency capping option is located in the campaign settings under the enhanced CPC setting.

AdWords Editor frequency capping

AdWords new expanded ads: how to get prepared for the change – optimization tricks and strategies

expanded-ads

 

Google announced several AdWords changes during their 2016 performance summit last month, the most important one probably being the increase of characters limits with new expanded text ads.

Google has been working on this for years (the side ads removal in February happened for this reason) and this might be the biggest change since the creation of AdWords! Finally marketers will have a bit more space for their creativity and will be less frustrated by the very restrictive characters limit they had to deal with until now. But unfortunately such important changes usually don’t happen smoothly and there is a high price to pay for improvement… If you are part of an agency dealing with several huge AdWords accounts, you might need to cancel your forthcoming holidays and work your whole summer on new ads to be ready for the change. And if you are not an AdWords expert and you only run a campaign for your small local business, you might be lost and not sure where to start. The goal of this post is to give any advertiser tricks to get ready for that huge change as quick as possible so you have your campaigns updated and don’t lose deals when the new ads format rolls out.

But first let’s have a look at what is changing.

What are the new expanded ads characters limits?

The new expanded ads will now contain:

  • Two 30 characters headline (compared to one 25 characters headline before) so 60 characters in total, that’s more than the double amount of characters allowed!
  • One 80 characters description line (compared to two 35 characters description lines before), that’s 10 more characters allowed.

So the new ads will be allowed to contain 140 characters in total, that’s 47% more than the current 95 characters!

What are the benefits of this change for advertisers?

Google has announced that the new expanded ads will work better across screens, especially mobiles, and that this change was designed especially for today’s mobile-first world, where more and more searches are done on mobile devices.

With the number of characters expanded, there is no doubt that advertisers will get more visibility, and you can therefore more than likely expect a higher CTR.

When and how will this change happen?

Google didn’t communicate any exact date yet, they just gave a vague indication of “later this year”. That’s why we advise you to get ready as soon as possible, and we will keep you updated on how and when exactly the change will happen when more information is given.

It would be great if those new expanded ads could be somehow automated, as it was the case for Upgraded URL’s. When that changed happened last year, Google set up an upgrade option in the AdWords interface that helped advertisers along the way, simply copying their current destination URL’s to the final URL’s fields. That made upgrading pretty straightforward and advertisers with small and simple accounts were able to be ready for the update in just a few minutes and clicks through the AdWords interface (it was also very easy to upgrade through AdWords Editor).

However an automated system is unlikely to happen with the new expanded ads, as the changes here have more consequences and the whole ads structure will be changed with now 2 headlines and 1 description line. Things would certainly be easier if there was an automated option in the AdWords interface that could just copy your existing description line 1 and use it as your new second headline, and keep your existing description line 2 and use it as your new description line. But the problem with that would occur with the characters limit: your first headline would remain the same and only contains 25 characters while your second headline would contain up to 35 characters and might exceed the new 30 characters limit if you used them all, and your new description line would only contain the 35 characters of your previous description line 2, instead of the new 80 characters allowed. Besides that, you might not want to use a previous description line as headline, depending on its content. So we just don’t see a way for this change to be automated, and if it is somehow anyway, it won’t be a perfect solution. Extra work will definitely be needed on your side to make sure you take full advantage of the new expanded ads and you are not left aside and losing deals to your competitors that got prepared quickly and have created amazing new expanded ads while you were just waiting for the last minute…

Our only hope is that Google will give enough time to advertisers to get prepared for this update. We assume that as for any AdWords change there will be a transition period during the which you will still be allowed to use your old ads while writing new expanded ads and a deadline date when your old ads won’t be allowed to run anymore, therefore you will start losing deals from that date if you don’t have expanded ads ready.

How to get prepared for the change?

Depending on your ads messaging, we can think of 2 different options for a smooth update. Either you update your current description line 1 to become your new headline 2 (reducing characters to maximum 30 if needed) as outlined in previous paragraph, either your merge your current description lines 1 and 2 to become your new 80 characters description line.

If you are already using extended headlines (where your description line 1 is combined with your headline – your ads need to be eligible to appear at the top of the page and your description line 1 needs to end with proper punctuation) we would advise you to choose option 1. The first and only thing you will absolutely need to do for the update is to reduce your new headline 2 if it exceeds the 30 characters limit.

You will also need to rework your current description line 2 and add extra messaging (filling the at least 45 characters empty space) to take full advantage of the new format, as the limit for the new description line is now 80 characters.

You might also want to rework your new headline 1 to add 5 extra characters, but this is just a small change and it can wait until later as your new ad will still look good without those 5 extra characters.

For those who don’t use extended headlines, we would strongly advise to use option 2 as you will keep the same ad structure and messaging and it will be pretty straightforward. You will just need to merge your current description lines 1 and 2 into the new 80 characters limit description line. Then you will need to think of a new 30 characters headline 2. You might also want to rework your new headline 1 to add 5 extra characters and your new description line to add 10 extra characters, but as stated above it can wait until later as your new ad will still look good without those extra characters.

In order to summarize:

Option 1: make your current description line 1 your new headline 2, and your current description line 2 your new description line:

  • Eventually reduce your new headline 2 so it doesn’t exceed the 30 characters limit.
  • Update your current description line 2 and add 45 extra characters.
  • Optional: add 5 extra characters to your new headline 1.

See with an example:

Current ad:

24/7 Accident Recovery

Reliable & Fast Recovery Service.

24 Hours a Day, 7 Days a Week!

New extended ad:

24/7 Fast Accident Recovery

Reliable Recovery Service

24 Hours a Day and 7 Days a Week. Call Us at Any Time and We Will Come and Help!

Option 2: merge your current description lines 1 and 2 into your new description line, and create a new headline 2:

  • Create a new 30 characters headline 2.
  • Optional: add 5 extra characters to your new headline 1 and 10 characters to your new description line.

With the same ad example as above:

New extended ad:

24/7 Quick Accident Recovery

Certified Professional Towing

Reliable & Fast Recovery Service. 24 Hours a Day and 7 Days a Week, Call Us Now!

 

Whatever option you choose, you can see that you will still need a bit of extra work to get ready for the update and your new expanded ads won’t be written in 1 hour, unless you only have a very small account with 10 ads. That’s why you need to get prepared for the update as soon as possible, starting today.

Another question that might cross your mind if you are dealing with several huge accounts with thousands of ads is where to start to be ready on time and make sure you don’t lose deals. You need to schedule and prioritize. Start with the top campaigns bringing the most leads/sales. Inside of each campaign select the ad groups bringing the more conversions and start working on them first, so that if you are running out of time and you are not 100% ready for the update, your top ad groups and campaigns will contain expanded ads and only secondary campaigns/ad groups will be left aside and you won’t lose your main deals to competitors. If you don’t have the time to create several expanded ads per ad group now, just create 1 for now, so that your campaigns can still run when the change rolls out.

Once again, don’t wait to get ready for the change, the earlier you start the smoother this huge change will happen for you. Allocate 1 hour of your time today to start thinking about it and elaborate your own plan of actions:

  • Depending on your current ads messaging, choose either to follow update option 1 or 2 stated above.
  • Run reports/download statistics and select your top performing campaigns, and top performing ad groups within them.
  • Select your current top performing ad within those ad groups.
  • Copy that data (the top performing ad, along with the ad group and campaign names containing this ad) in excel and start writing 1 new expanded ad, with the messaging inspired by your current top performing ad. Please make sure you add a formula to calculate the number of characters for each line in order to respect the new characters limit:

30 characters for headline 1

30 characters for headline 2

80 characters for description line

 

 

Images source: Pixabay

5 Metrics You Should Always Monitor in AdWords

adwords-metrics

If you’re already running AdWords campaigns, you know that Google makes a huge amount of data accessible to you surrounding the performance of your campaigns. While it can feel overwhelming to wade through a dashboard full of numbers and metrics without purpose, learning to parse your AdWords dashboard effectively can give you a wealth of insight into how your campaigns are running, and what you can do to make them more successful.

Most people don’t have time to sit down and pore over stacks of data, so paying close attention to the right metrics will let you get the information you need to run your campaigns well without wasting valuable time. Here are five of the most important metrics that you should always monitor in AdWords, and how they can help you make your PPC campaigns more successful.

CTR (Click-Through Rate)

Your CTR, or click-through rate, is one of the basic building blocks of AdWords analytics.  Because CTR only measures how many clicks your ads receive, it doesn’t paint the complete picture of how your campaigns are performing. However, that doesn’t mean that you should ignore your CTR. While CTR isn’t very useful for determining overall conversions, it is an important indicator for whether your ads are reaching the right audience.

Successful advertisers treat CTR as a litmus test for whether their ad copy is on-point and if they’ve chosen the appropriate keywords. Oftentimes, a drop in CTR can be a sign that it’s time to freshen up your ad copy or rethink their keyword strategy.

Conversion Rate

CTR  is a useful metric for knowing whether your ad copy and keyword strategy is up to par, but your conversion rate is an important metric because it tells you what happens after that first click. Whether a conversion means filling out a form on a landing page, making a purchase or calling your business, measuring how many of your viewers “convert” to qualified leads or customers helps you understand the overall success of your PPC efforts. Your conversion rate can tell you how well your advertising campaigns are truly reaching potential customers.

A good conversion rate is proof that your ad spend is leading to real profit, and thus that your investment in PPC advertising is (literally) paying off. If your CTR is high but your conversion rate is low, you may need to consider reviewing your landing page, or examine whether your ads are reaching the right segment of your audience.

CPC (Cost Per Click)

Paying close attention to your CPC, or cost per click, helps you allocate your budget more effectively and ensures that high-cost keywords aren’t eating up your ad spend too quickly. In industries such as insurance and legal, where competitive keywords can be extremely costly, ensuring that your cost per click stays reasonable is an important safeguard against overspending for ad placements.

Managing cost per click can be a fiddly business, as the baseline cost per click can vary dramatically for some keywords depending on the time of day, your Quality Score, and a variety of other factors. Many advertisers opt to have their campaigns managed by PPC management firms like Webrageous or use automated bidding tools in order to maximize their cost per click.  

Cost Per Conversion

Just as CTR is a weak metric without the context of your conversion rate, CPC can be much more valuable if it is considered alongside your cost per conversion. Cost per conversion indicates what the cost of acquiring a conversion or new customer is. A healthy cost per conversion should correspond to the overall value that a conversion brings. For example, an online clothing retailer selling $5 pairs of socks would not want to pay $50 per conversion, but for a lawyer that $50 conversion may result in thousands of dollars income in the long run.

Cost per conversion gives you insight into the ultimate value of your PPC campaigns. Just as with conversion rate, examining your cost per conversion can help you understand the real financial benefit that your ad campaigns are bringing to your company.

Quality Score

While Quality Score can feel a little more mysterious than other metrics, it impacts everything from how much you pay for ads to how good their placement is, so it’s a critical metric to monitor in AdWords. The other metrics we’ve discussed have to do with how your audience views and reacts to your ads. Quality Score is an important indicator of what Google’s algorithm thinks of your ads. And since Google is the gatekeeper of ad performance, making sure that your ad copy, keyword strategy and landing pages live up to Google’s standards can help you get the best results for your campaigns.

Whenever you make changes to your campaigns — especially if you make changes to your ads and landing pages, make sure that you double check your Quality Score. Making changes to copy and layout can have a significant impact on your Quality Score, which can ripple through other aspects of your campaigns and bring down performance quality.

Running Data-Driven AdWords Campaigns with Webrageous

PPC is a fast-moving, ever-changing advertising medium. As demand for online advertising continues to rise and the tools used to run campaigns become more sophisticated, being able to monitor and interpret key metrics for your ad performance can have a huge impact on your advertising success. By using metrics to drive your advertising decision-making process, you’ll be able to react to any changes and make PPC decisions based on data, rather than blindly making choices that may or may not improve your campaigns.

Webrageous has been running data-driven PPC campaigns for our clients for years, and we can give you more insight into your AdWords metrics to help you run your advertising campaigns more effectively than ever. Contact us today for more information on running high-performing AdWords campaigns with Webrageous.

Nine Reasons Why We Love AdWords (And You Should, Too!)

adwords

If you’re considering PPC advertising for your business, it is more than likely that AdWords will be one of the strongest tools in your arsenal. With over 3 billion queries per day, Google offers a huge potential for serving PPC ads across a wide variety of industries. Google has a strong incentive to make their advertising platform effective and user-friendly, and we consider it one of the best platforms available to PPC professionals. Here are nine reasons we love using Google AdWords for our PPC campaigns, and why should you love AdWords, too.

1. AdWords Ads Have an Engaging Format

Organic search results are limited to a text-heavy format. This means that there aren’t many ways to make your organic search results stand out from the rest. AdWords offers a range of ad formats that are flexible and engaging, from static graphics and photos to videos. Location and call-only extensions also provide compelling information that makes it easier for potential customers to find and contact your business by integrating features like maps and click-to-call buttons into your ads.

2. AdWords Results are Measurable

AdWords gives you measurable results for your ad campaigns. This makes it easy to understand the ROI of your campaigns, and to drill down into the specific successes of various campaigns and keywords. You can focus your efforts on the keywords, formats and audience segments that give you the best results. With organic search, measuring and controlling the conversion rate for those pages can be challenging, if not impossible. AdWords also offers the benefits of easy-to-parse analytics dashboards that are updated daily, giving you an easy way to stay on top of campaign performance.

3. AdWords Give You Budget Flexibility

One of the features that makes AdWords such a powerful tool is its ability to accommodate a range of budgets. You can easily adjust your ad spend to anticipate and react to campaign performance over time, concentrating your ad spend on high-converting keywords or allocating a portion of your budget for more experimental campaigns. You can also utilize flexible bid strategies to automate your bidding strategy to maximize CPC and meet other PPC goals. However you choose to manage your budget, AdWords lets you optimize your campaigns to get the most bang for your budget by offering the ability to control their ad spend on a granular level.

4. Faster Results than SEO

Organic search results can be a challenging field to control. Google’s SEO algorithms are complex and ever changing. Even if you’re doing “everything right” when it comes to SEO, it can take months for your web pages to rank in search results. Google generally approved in about one business day, so you’ll be able to start serving your ads to viewers almost as soon as you start running campaigns.

5. Flexible Time Management

For many of our customers, the goal of PPC campaigns is to drive call-based conversions. As a result, they want to increase the likelihood that people will see their ads during office hours. AdWords gives advertisers control over what time of day their ads are shown. This is especially important for certain industries, such as the legal industry. Additionally, flexible advertising time management can be beneficial for any business or industry by allowing them to target less expensive time slots.

6. Granular Targeting Options

With such a massive pool of browsers using Google around the world, it’s important that advertisers are able to focus their ad campaigns on the viewers that are a good fit for their business. AdWords offers the best targeting options for PPC ads. This ensures that advertisers are more likely to reach their target audience while minimizing the amount of irrelevant users who see their ads. Advertisers can adjust variables such as locations, keywords, placements, and device to pinpoint users that fit their buyer personas more precisely.  

7. Remarketing

The benefits of remarketing are measurable. Studies have shown that ad viewers who are engaged in remarketing campaigns are up to 70% more likely to convert. Many advertising outlets offer a single opportunity to capture a prospective customer’s interest. But by leveraging remarketing campaigns, you can put your ads in front of the same viewers again and again. Remarketing with AdWords let you stay connected with your visitors on world’s biggest display advertising network. 

8.  Time-Saving Campaign Management Tools

Managing PPC campaigns can be a time-intensive endeavor. The platform has a variety of built-in tools to help you manage your campaigns more efficiently. Tools like Keywords planner, Adwords Editor, and the Merchant Center help advertisers tap the full potential of AdWords while saving time and remaining efficient in their campaign management activities.

9.  Great Customer Service

For problems large and small, Google has a customer service team at the ready. Their services include a weekday help hotline and a 24/7 online chat line. For advertisers who spend more than $10,000 monthly, Google offers dedicated AdWords representatives to walk you through ad management and advise you on the best way to run your campaigns.

Webrageous and AdWords

AdWords is a powerful platform for running successful PPC campaigns. It can also be a challenging tool to learn to use. To take advantage of the full potential of your AdWords campaign, consider working with Webrageous to managing your PPC campaigns. We have years of experience managing high-performing pay-per-click campaigns. We work closely with our AdWords representatives to ensure that our clients always see the best results possible for their advertising goals. Contact Webrageous today to learn how we can help you harness the power of AdWords and reach your PPC goals.

 

How to Optimize a “Limited by Budget” Campaign

limited by budget campaigns

Whether you have been running AdWords campaigns for a while or you are new to PPC, there’s a good chance that at some point you’ve seen that bright orange “limited by budget” notification on your AdWords dashboard. But what you might not realize is that you can use these budget notifications to your advantage to keep your PPC campaigns running smoothly. Here’s what you need to know about “limited by budget” campaigns and how you can adjust them to maximize their performance and optimize your ad spend.

What does “Limited by Budget” Mean?

Google AdWords campaigns may receive “limited by budget” designation whenever your budget is lower than Google’s recommended budget daily budget for a given set of keywords. This could mean that your budget is too low to serve your ads at all, or that it is too low to serve your ads more than a few times per day. While it’s easy to assume that Google is simply trying to convince advertisers to spend more money on advertising, these notifications can be a helpful performance indicator for your campaigns. For instance, if you’ve set your budget for a campaign to $200 per day and the CPC for one of the most popular keywords in that campaign is $50, you might be maxing out your budget each day after only four clicks. And unless your conversion rate is incredibly high, you probably won’t see great results from that campaign.

Optimizing Your “Limited By Budget” Campaigns

You can still run successful campaigns that are technically limited by budget. However, using these built-in notifications can be a useful technique in your advertising toolbox. By using “limited by budget” notifications as indicators of campaigns that need may need some tweaking, you can optimize your ad spend and improve your campaigns overall.

In some cases, the quickest and easiest fix for “limited by budget” campaigns is simply to increase your budget allocation for that campaign. However, most of us don’t have an unlimited ad spend, so making the most of our budgets is a priority. Here’s how to optimize your campaigns to ensure you’re getting great results within your existing budget.

Use Metrics to Cultivate Your Keyword Strategy

One of the first things you should do with “limited by budget” campaigns is to investigate why your campaigns are hitting budget limitations. Determine if there are a few keywords that are sucking up most of your budget. Some industries — especially the legal and insurance industries — can have extremely expensive keywords that might be eating up your entire daily budget after just a few clicks.

Once you’ve found the keyword culprits, you can take action to keep them from derailing your PPC campaigns. If they aren’t performing up to par, determine why; are they so expensive that you max out your budget after just a few clicks? Or are you getting plenty of clicks, but for keywords that aren’t relevant enough to your services to lead to a conversion? You may want to adjust your bid or pause keywords that take up a lot of impressions, especially if they aren’t converting well.

Break Budget-Hogging Keywords Out of Campaigns

Sometimes budget limitations are caused by poorly segmented campaigns. High-ticket keywords can bring your business valuable potential customers, but oftentimes they take attention away from cheaper keywords with relatively lower traffic, such as long-tail keywords, that might be just as important for driving a healthy lead flow. Consider creating separate campaigns for these “budget hogs.” This also helps to ensure that your ads also get some airtime for less expensive keywords that may be a better fit for your advertising goals.

Build and Manage Your Negative Keyword List

Building a healthy negative keyword list is another important aspect of optimizing “limited by budget” campaigns. By cultivating a list of keywords that you don’t want to target, you can ensure that when your ads are served, they’re reaching the right audience. Making sure that your ads are a good fit for the viewers that AdWords serves them to can help decrease your average CPC and improve your conversion rate overall.

Be sure to revisit your negative keyword list on a regular basis to make sure that it is comprehensive and accurate. Consumer search behaviors can change over time, so you may need to add or remove negative keywords from your list over time.

Use Ad Scheduling to Stretch Your Budget

Another data set to examine on your “limited by budget” campaigns is when you are maxing out your daily budget. For some high-traffic keywords, you may be hitting your budget limit early in the morning. This may negatively impact your campaign’s efficacy because in some cases PPC ads demonstrate better performance at specific times of the day. Additionally certain times of day may be more competitive, driving up the cost of ads. By scheduling your ads to run during time periods that are less expensive, you can stretch your existing budget further. This can be a useful tactic if you are running call only ad campaigns, especially if you have a specific time range in which you would like prospects to call your business.

Optimizing Your PPC Campaigns with Webrageous

Managing successful PPC campaigns isn’t always a quick and easy process, but it can bring great returns if you can devote time and resources to running your campaigns well. Whether you have limited time or a limited budget, effective, affordable PPC campaigns do not have to be out of reach for your business. Webrageous can help optimize your campaigns to perform well with the budget that you have, and ensure that you’re getting the best results possible from your PPC efforts. Contact us today to learn more about how our experience and expertise can help you reach your PPC advertising goals.

Image Source: Pixabay