AdWords Optimization Checkpoints

By October 16, 2013AdWords Guides, Blog

AdWords Optimization Checkpoints

Some of the below could help maintain high quality management. The key piece of advice to note is – planning means everything:

Why Optimize?

Campaigns managed with User Interface & API Access belong the to the end-client.

Competitors can and should examine existing campaigns potential clients own and could use your bad management as a sales tool

Optimize accounts regularly, build your AdWords reputation from consistent results


When You Know An Agency Is Not So Good

Claims fixed CPC prices (exc. reservations)

Claims ownership of campaign preventing end client from gaining access to account

Don’t make Advertiser Guide available on their website when they have to

Have multiple clients in a single AdWords CID for no reason and don’t use an MCC

Claim they are from Google when they are not

Sets up a messy campaign, does not monitor and only ever checks performance when client calls to say they are not getting any results

Has no idea how to set up campaign or optimise to try ‘wing it’


My Opinion On The Better Agency

Does not focus on getting ‘you’ to top of the Google page and converts the most users for the lowest cost

Knows clients goals and designs a strategy before building a campaign. Implements strategy well with test/re-test methods

Does not hide campaign or prevent end client from access. No deceptive billing practices.

No guarantee in results, knows self-ability, understands marketing tools and never over promises or set false expectations


Optimize Using Range Of Tools

Display Campaign Optimizer – Finds placements at the right price

Cost-Per- Acquisition – Finds clicks at the right price to meet conversion cost goals

Custom Schedule – Control when ads display

Advanced Location Target – Control whether ad can be found when users search about or are in target location

Dimensions Tab – Find tons of performance data about location, time of day and more

Segment Button – Segment stats to compare which match type is best, whether ad performs better on top or right hand side of Google and more

Sitelink Descriptions – Add descriptions to four extra pages of your site

Know How Quality Score & New Ad Rank Work

Quality score leverages bid power – helps enter ad auctions, decreases costs and ‘top of the page’ estimates


Increase Q.S & Be Relevant

Ensure keywords are grouped in specific themes across all campaigns

Create clear, dedicated adverts for each keyword list

Use landing page most relevant to your goals and advert when selecting destination URL

Optimise regularly and design campaign to collect meaningful stats. Create optimisation schedules and mini experiments

Optimisation Scheduling

Week One

Check campaign day after going live to make sure it is not under review, disapproved and getting clicks impressions

Check for campaign specific negatives keywords or placements

If you notice too many clicks and impressions on single target method, refine it or move to dedicated campaign to control budget allocation whilst increasing data to understand the volume

If you notice too many clicks and no conversions, check the code is verified then direct users to more specific landing page


Optimisation Checkpoints

Week Two Onwards

Wait for data before making changes to reinforce educated decisions

Wait till you have five or more conversions and 100 clicks

Set checkpoints based on any metric of your choice (impressions, CTR, CPA)

Monitor where clicks are coming from, what people are typing in, time of day and conversion paths to focus budget on what works best


Optimization Planning

During Build Of Campaign

Ensure keywords are in-line with marketing goals

Ensure ads are rotated evenly to compare CTR, costs and conversions at later date

Ensure advanced campaign settings are used to control stats

Make sure you know what you will be checking regularly before the campaign is built.

Do not wait till you have thousands of clicks/impressions and stats manipulated by automated settings to then decide what to do next – you won’t know.

Before Data Analysis

If you write an advert focused on the price, another focused on quality of service and both used the same keywords in the same month, which one will get a better result?

If you target broad match keywords, will they trigger better variations or synonyms or perform better on a segmented match type?

If you target a placements which type of advert will perform better, text or image?

If you use as many ad extensions as possible, will it increase CTR?

During Data Analysis

If you enable above fold targeting on display, will this increase CTR across sites?

If you enable CPA bidding will Google be able to find more conversions at a better cost?

If you enabled Google Partner Sites, did they perform in line with Google Search?

If you targeted the whole country, did specific geographical regions show a lower ad rank then others?

If you scheduled 24/7, does your CPC go up at particular hours of the day?


Performance Check

Week One

Is a specific target method (or agroup) preventing me from gathering data on the whole campaign?

Is my target to broad and irrelevant and causing drop in CTR?

Is my CTR too high because of irrelevant clicks and placements?

Is my ad rank too low and preventing me from entering ad auction?

Is my advert directing users to the wrong page?

Is my budget depleted to early in a day?

Is one user location depleting my budget or receiving more conversions than another?


Regular Performance Checks

Week Two Onwards

Should I change the keyword match type to increase CTR?

Are there keywords in search terms report that I should be blocking or adding?

Am I turning enough impressions into clicks?

Is my quality score dropping?

Have I created new ads to see if I can get better result?

How does my campaign stack up against others listed in auction insights?

Have I segmented stats to understand detailed metrics?

Have I checked dimensions tab or search funnels to understand where my conversions are coming from?

How Do You Get Better?

Account History – Monitor campaign regularly and improve performance. Use this and reports to justify your efforts.

Learning Centre – Teach yourself about AdWords and best practices

AdWords Terms – Read them before you breach and get permanently suspended

Google Policy Centre – Understand policies (activate policy column) before panicking

Google Partners – Join and become a GCP

Contact Google – Find a agency account manager who will help you learn optimisation

Google Third Party Policy – Understand rules, it is difficult to get away with deceptive practices or treating clients improperly

Advertiser Guide – Check if it is compulsory for you to share the document – if you don’t a competitor might show you up for trying to hide something a doc made for clients

How Do You Stay Ahead?

Think Insights – Sign up for Google Insights

Google Blog – Subscribe and stay ahead with updates

Inside AdWords – Subscribe to AdWords specific news

Insight Finder – Learn how to use wide range of campaign research tools

AdWords Communities – try to read online troubleshooting posts, have mental store of solutions before experiencing similar issues