It was just last month that Google announced that they were rolling out arguably the biggest change to hit AdWords in years. While the debate continues as to whether these changes are good or bad for advertisers, the fact remains that these changes reflect a new norm for AdWords; a norm that favors mobile and geographic oriented targeting. Given that local advertising is expected to grow 3x over the next five years (from $18.7B to $51.1B by 2017), we can expect this trend toward mobile/local to continue.
Soon after the announcement, Louis mused over these changes and how they will affect the SMB marketer. Now that we have had a few weeks to explore the new campaigns and test out a few features we wanted to give a few pointers on where these features exist within the AdWords platform, and how to set them up.
Location, Device, & Ad Scheduled Bid Adjustments
While ad scheduling bid adjustments were available previously, Google has added the location and device based bid adjustment features, and has centralized these settings all in one place (simply click the “settings” tab on any campaign). I will walk through each of these, and where/how they can be used to optimize an AdWords account.
First, locations. One AdWords report I frequently found underutilized by clients, and one which is especially useful for local advertising, is the Geographic Report. Found within the “Dimensions” tab, the Geographic Report allows advertisers to see performance data on specific locations within their geo-targeting settings.
Armed with this data, advertisers can now leverage the new AdWords Geographic Bid Settings to set bid multipliers on specific geographic areas. You can find this within the “Locations” sub-tub found under the “Settings” tab. If you see a specific geographic area tends to perform better than others, or if you want to increase the bids on a particular radius around a physical location, this is where you can perform these tasks.
Similar optimizations can be made for specific days of the week, and hours of the day. Right next to the Geographic Report within the “Dimensions” tab are the “Day of the Week” and “Hour of the Day” reports. Like the Geographic Report, this data can be leveraged to set different bids on time segments you select.
Just like the location settings, you can adjust the ad scheduling bid settings within the "settings" tab on any campaign.
The final dimension on which you can set these bid modifiers is based on Device. What makes optimizing for devices a bit different than location or day/hour, is that you will not find this data within the Dimensions tab. Instead, navigate to the campaigns or ad groups tab. Select the “Segment” pull-down and “Device.” Now that you can see conversion data on different device types, head on over to the settings tab, where we made the geographic and ad scheduling bid adjustments, and simply select the “Devices” sub-tab.
And it doesn’t end here! Beyond these optimization techniques new changes like the way sitelink extensions are handled, or how conversions can now include phone calls. Stay tuned as we continue to experiment with enhanced campaigns and share some tips.