In late January, AdWords advertisers received a startling email from Google. The headline in the email was, “We’ll focus on your campaigns, so you can focus on your business.” Advertisers reading the emails flew into a tizzy, interpreting the email as saying Google would be taking over all campaign management.
Let’s take a look at what they’re really doing.
What About the Email?
The email went out to Google AdWords advertisers around January 24, 2019. As far as we’re currently aware, the email did not go out to all advertisers, but to a group of select accounts considered to be part of the program’s pilot launch.
We’re not quite sure, at this point, how they chose the advertisers included in their new and improved program. We do know they only sent the email to businesses who are not already using a PPC agency to manage their accounts.
The message told advertisers that they would begin managing campaigns within one week. They are touting it as complimentary campaign support, but are giving users the option to opt out at any time. The service would involve an in-house Google Ad expert reviewing and making changes to accounts.
They will be able to:
- Review and make changes to your keywords
- Make alterations to the structure of your ad groups
- Make changes to your ad copy
- Make adjustments to your bids
Google assured users they will not make changes to their overall budget. They will only make changes to the bids associated with certain keywords.
So what does this mean to you?
It means you need to make a decision. If Google AdWords campaigns are a thorn in your side (something you never really understood but have been trying to run), perhaps allowing for in-house support is a good option for you.
On the other hand, there’s really no way anyone from Google knows your business the way you do, so allowing them to choose keywords and make changes to your ad copy (and your brand’s voice) may not be optimal. In that case, you definitely need to make sure you log in and opt out of the program. Just go back to the email and click the link.
Tips for Improving Your Own Google AdWords Campaigns
While Google’s in-house representatives do understand PPC, you are under no obligation to participate in the program. There will also be no changes to their current customer support set-up, so you can still call or email for help at any time.
There’s always room for improvement in the world of PPC. If you are opting to maintain control, here are some things to check and consider as you conduct your tests.
Consider Your Keywords
Google also changed the way it works with exact keyword matches. They have broadened the variants, allowing for similar synonyms and phrases to show in the searches as well. This isn’t necessarily a good thing, so you’ll want to make sure your keyword choices are as specific as you can make them to avoid confusion and misleading ads.
Test Your Landing Pages
No two landing pages are alike, nor are your audiences. Every company running AdWords campaigns, no matter what the niche, should be split-testing. It may surprise you to learn less than 50 percent actually do so. You may need to adjust your entire layout, or you may simply need to tweak your color schemes. You won’t know until you test.
Make Sure Your Ad Copy Matches Your Landing Page
It sounds silly, but it makes sense. The verbiage you use in your ad copy should give your visitors an idea of what to expect when they click and land on your page. If the ad copy talks about a course to learn how to build an email list, then the landing page needs to talk about that same course. If your ad copy talks about cheap faux-suede jackets, your landing page better not feature expensive leather coats.
Make Sure Your Ad Looks Right
The little details make a huge difference. Use title case when writing the title headline for your ad. It will stand out as more professional. For example, which looks better to your eye?
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Naturally, most of us gravitate toward the first. It’s clear, polished, and properly capitalized. The second feels sloppy for an ad.
Also be cautious of word formatting and appearance in the sense of text blocks and/or the overall distribution of text. Try not to write ads that leave single words hanging on the last line or em dashes that hang off the end of a line. Both of these throw the visual composition off.
Incorporate Sitelink Ad Extensions
A lot of ads include extra links to different pages on your website beneath the main link. While Google will only display up to four of these at a time, you can actually optimize more when you set up your ad. Google will then decide which are most appropriate to display based on what prompted your ad to show, and where.
Consider Your Ad’s Placement
The reality is people browsing the web will click on ads whether they’re in the sidebar, in the middle of a blog post, or at the top of the search results. What you really want, though, is for your ad to end up in a top spot. The better your placement, the better your conversion rate. Testing your ads to see which position is best for your particular niche and keyword is important to your success.
Use Remarketing Tools
Did you know that up to 70 percent of people who click your links and end up in your online store will abandon their shopping card the first time they visit? Remarketing tools will help you to improve your conversion rates by using tracking tools to remind your original visitors they want to come back. This simple reminder can skyrocket your ad’s overall success rates.
While Google did a great job of making advertisers a little nervous about their AdWords campaigns, there is really nothing to worry about. Check your email and make sure you opt out of the pilot program if you were invited and aren’t interested. Then carry on with your split testing and regular ad adjustments. Google support will be there for you no matter what, whether you take advantage of the new service or not.