This is part two of a two-part article on Google’s AdWords Enhanced Campaigns. Part 1 was published February 19, 2013
As many of you already know, Google announced the rollout of its Enhanced Campaigns last week, marking a major change in how Google paid search accounts have been traditionally structured. As advertisers begin to navigate through the changes to the AdWords campaign structure, there are several implications to the new features that affect how advertisers should approach campaign management. Before migrating your accounts into the Enhanced Campaigns structure, consider the elements below:
- It’s time to rethink your bid management strategy. Enhanced Campaigns completely turns “traditional” bid management strategies on their head. You will want to be prepared with new strategies and approaches on how to handle bid management and multipliers under the new campaign structure. Remember your desktop/tablet bid is your default bid. Advertisers can use a bid multiplier to adjust bids at the keyword level across mobile and tablet devices.
- Keyword Level Bid Management – As mentioned above, since your desktop/tablet bid is now your default bid and since keyword lists are no longer mutually exclusive by device, advertisers must strategize how to manage bidding for keywords that perform well on desktop but not mobile and vice versa. For keywords that perform well on mobile but NOT desktop, advertisers will want to set a low default bid and use the bid multiplier to increase the keyword bid on mobile. The opposite will hold true for keywords that perform well on desktop but not mobile. Set a high default bid and use the bid multiplier to decrease the bid on mobile.
- Increased Competition (and Cost) – With Google’s new AdWords structure, advertisers will be automatically enrolled in both tablet and mobile. As a result, advertisers should anticipate and plan for increased competition in both of these spaces. In the past, many advertisers had enjoyed low CPCs in both the tablet and mobile markets, as they weren’t as heavily saturated as the desktop market. With Enhanced Campaigns, the market will begin crowding and as a result CPCs will rise. Advertisers must start planning for this and begin to allocate and manage their budgets accordingly.
- Understand Your Mobile Presence – With Google’s Enhanced Campaigns, all advertisers are automatically opted into mobile. But advertising on mobile might not make sense for your business. You may not have a mobile optimized site. Your target audience may not lend itself to mobile paid search advertising. So before you dive head first into mobile, make sure your website and your business are right for this market. If you are in the middle of designing your site, then now is the right time to think about responsive design. Responsive Web design (often abbreviated to RWD) is a Web design approach aimed at crafting sites to provide an optimal viewing experience – easy reading and navigation with a minimum of resizing, panning and scrolling – across a wide range of devices (from desktop computer monitors to mobile phones). Google’s Enhanced Campaigns and their one-size-fits-all approach are nicely aligned with responsive design.
- Third Party Tracking Tools – For those of you who use 3rd party tracking tools, be advised that there will need to be adjustments and updates made to these systems in order to accurately report enhanced campaign performance. In the meantime, Advertisers using 3rd party tracking will need to add specific parameters to their URL’s in order to see keyword data by device. As Google rolls out the API functionality over the coming months, advanced third party platforms should release their corresponding functionality.
- Time Management – A lot of things have changed with the rollout of Enhanced Campaigns. Many AdWords features have been removed; some have been added. Either way, it’s going to take a significant amount of time to absorb all the changes and understand their impact. Advertisers should plan to attend the ongoing webinar training provided by Google and allocate a significant chunk of time (in addition to the time they’ve already spent managing their PPC account) to prep, execute and manage their new Enhanced Campaigns.
No one knows for sure exactly how the new Enhanced Campaigns will affect the paid search market or to what degree. One thing is for sure though; the way Google is approaching paid search and their campaign structure is changing significantly. Regardless the motivation, to provide more contextually relevant ads or strictly a revenue play, advertisers must adjust and embrace the new changes in order to continue to be successful within the new Enhanced Campaigns structure.