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AdWords Best Practices Resource Center Opens for Digital Marketers

google-adwords-square-logo We are pleased to announce the new Google-sponsored AdWords Best Practices Center on Search Engine Land. This page provides best practices that are authored and curated by the search company – including checklists, guides, white papers, and webinars – all geared toward improving proficiency with AdWords. In addition to best practices that have been extensively verified by Google teams and supported by internal data, the AdWords Best Practices Center will also provide timely guidance on new AdWords features. We invite you to check out the resources in categories such as Quality Score, [...]


Bing Ads URL Auto-Tagging Finally Arrives

bing-ads-600 Rejoice, the Bing Ads team has finally rolled out one of its most-requested features -- auto-tagging for ad destination URLs. When UTM tags are added to destination URLs on ads, the performance metrics can flow into Google Analytics. Until now, advertisers have had to manually add tag URLs or rely on a third-party solution every time they uploaded new ads in their Bing Ads campaigns. Here's how you do it: Go to the account and billing tab in the Bing Ads web interface and check the box next to "Add UTM tags to my ads' destination URLs". You then have two options, either to replace all ex [...]


Optmyzr Launches Bid Management Solution For Google Shopping Campaigns

black-shoes-google-shopping Google's new Shopping Campaigns offer many benefits over traditional PLA campaigns, including granular performance benchmarks, but bid optimization can still be cumbersome. Optmyzr, the company that provides automation tools for Google AdWords management, has launched a new tool to help streamline and speed-up bid management on Google Shopping Campaigns. Shopping Bidder is designed particularly for companies managing large Shopping Campaigns with thousands of products. The tool gives paid search managers a view of all biddable items in their accounts on a single page. Filters then allow [...]


How To Manage Bids For AdWords Shopping Ads

google-shopping-600 Last month, I covered the basics of how Shopping campaigns in AdWords differ from Search campaigns. The key finding I had was that, with Search, you have to add keywords to target more queries. In Shopping, all queries that match your products are targeted by default, and one of the main reasons to divide products into Product Groups is to get more control over bids. This month, I'd like to share what I've learned about managing bids for AdWords Shopping ads. Bidding In Shopping Campaigns All bidding in Shopping Campaigns is done at the lowest Product Group level -- so while ad grou [...]


WordStream Adds A Paid Search Landing Page Grader To Its Docket Of Free Tools

WordStream Landing Page Grader Summary Bad landing pages can tank even the most beautifully constructed AdWords campaign. For many small businesses, the prospect of tackling landing page optimization on top of managing bids, keywords and ad copy can be daunting. To help marketers gauge the performance of their landing pages, WordStream, a paid search management platform for SMBs, launched a free AdWords Landing Page Grader. The tool is designed to give site owners benchmarks on how their landing pages stack up against others in their industry with similar ad spend. Like the company's AdWords Performance Grader, the Landin [...]


A Defense Of Broad Match For SEM

A Sunday Afternoon on the Island of La Grande Jatte by Georges Seurat "A Sunday Afternoon on the Island of La Grande Jatte" by Georges Seurat is a renowned work of art that currently sits in the Art Institute of Chicago. You’ve probably seen it at some point or another. It’s known for its size (almost seven feet tall and over ten feet wide) and its style (pointillism). Pointillism, a style of art that Seurat himself invented, involves making colorful dots coalesce into a picture. If you look at some of Seurat’s works close enough, all you’ll see is a bunch of dots. [caption id="attachment_193543" align="aligncenter" width="600"] A Sunday Afternoon [...]


Why You Don’t See “World Cup” Ads On Google

world-cup-soccer-600 [caption id="attachment_193527" align="aligncenter" width="600"] A Google Trends chart shows the huge spikes in search volume for "World Cup" in the years the tournament is held.[/caption] Google is on the cusp of a search volume siege from soccer (aka football) fans as the 2014 FIFA World Cup™ nears. A look at Google Trends data shows we're on the upswing what Google can expect when the tournament starts on June 12, based on the volumes the last two times the World Cup was held, in 2006 and 2010. What may surprise you is the search results from all this "World Cup" interest will be l [...]


Google Introduces New Content API For Google Shopping

google-shopping-600 Today, Google introduced a new version of the API that allows retailers to manage product feed content programmatically, as opposed to through manual updates to Google Merchant Center. It's the first version update of the API since Google first launched it in 2010, before Google Shopping became a paid platform. Version 2 of the Content API for Google Shopping offers these added features: Item-level data quality information: See if an item was disapproved because a landing page URL isn’t working on a mobile device or if unique product identifiers are inaccurate. Faster pricing and av [...]


Reusable Code For MCC Scripts Will Save You Tons Of Time In AdWords

html-code-schema-300px Writing reusable code is something all developers strive for. Any developer worth his/her salt is continuously building a library of reusable code snippets to use in future development. You don't need to re-invent the wheel each time a common problem is encountered because you can use the code you've already written. It also makes legacy code easier to update later. I'm in the process of updating some of my scripts for the new MCC level format, and I've been thinking about some common code snippets I seem to use in almost every script I write. So I thought I'd share some of these idea [...]


Bing Ads Tweaks Its Tune: Desktop/Tablet Traffic To Be Combined, Adding Tablet Bid Modifier

bing-ads-600 [caption id="attachment_193329" align="alignright" width="259"] David Pann, Microsoft[/caption] You may recall last spring, Bing Ads issued a manifesto of sorts in response to Google's announcement of Enhanced Campaigns titled Advertisers Deserve Control: “We do not believe bundling mobile, desktop and tablet advertising together in an opaque manner is in the best interests of our customers.” In what would appear to be an about-face, Bing Ads announced Wednesday that it will begin lumping desktop and tablet traffic together, á la Google's Enhanced Campaigns. The change, announced [...]


Google AdWords To Drop Support For IE9 This Month

Internet Explorer If you're among the 8 percent of Internet Explorer users still on IE9, you'll soon have to seek out an alternative way to access AdWords. Google announced Tuesday, that as of June 30, 2014, AdWords will no longer support IE9. Google regularly ditches AdWords support for legacy browser versions; IE8 was phased out last July. If your a die-hard Internet Explorer fan, your best bet will be to update to the latest version, which is IE11, within the next couple of weeks. AdWords also supports Firefox, Safari, and yes, Chrome.   [...]


Google AdWords Weekend Conversion Reporting Issue Now Fixed

new-google-adwords-logo Anyone else have @Adwords conversion tracking fail over the weekend? #ppcchat — Jason Manion (@JasonManion) June 2, 2014 Many AdWords users logged in to their accounts on Monday to find conversion and revenue stats were nearly non-existent starting Friday, May 30. Google has said the problem has been fixed and was merely a reporting issue, and not a problem with data retrieval. A spokesperson tells us all data will be restored by the end of the day Monday -- likely Pacific time. @bizwriter @JasonManion Thanks for your patience. The issue is resolved and conversion reporting should be [...]


How To Run Single-Device Only Enhanced Campaigns. It Can Be Done!

shutterstock_122145442-single-device-campaign When I speak about Enhanced Campaigns, I invariably get an audience question like this: "How can I create single-device campaigns? I know it's possible somehow, tell me how!" I recently figured out the answer. Why The Need For Single-Device Campaigns? I am not usually a proponent of AdWords workarounds. I typically encourage businesses to work with the system and concentrate their efforts on making their landing pages and funnel work well within the AdWords targeting criteria limits. However, the device targeting limits of Enhanced Campaigns just inherently don't work for some business [...]


Google Comparison Ads Under Fire In UK

google-uk-england-featured The UK financial services industry regulator Financial Conduct Authority is taking a closer look at Google Comparison Ads. UK price comparison sites have complained that Google is unfairly competing with them by placing its own "product" at the top of search results. Comparison Ads, which operate on a CPA basis, are one form of AdWords. Below is an example of how the ads look in US search results: The UK inquiry essentially mirrors broader antitrust ('vertical search") complaints against Google around the globe. Google's pending antitrust settlement in Europe is under fire from poli [...]


Despite Google’s Efforts, Counterfeiters Are Commonplace On AdWords

shutterstock_132430334-prom-dress-fraud Should a company that includes the phrase "don't be evil" in their code of conduct be expected to block counterfeiters from buying ads on their search engine result pages? Is it "evil" to sell AdWords to websites that are filled with copyright infringing photos? These questions are unfortunately relevant -- for certain product categories, Google's search engine results pages (SERPs) are filled with links to counterfeiters utilizing copyright-infringing photos. Take the product category of [Dresses > Formal Gowns]. A significant percentage of sponsored ads on the SERPs promote the s [...]


How Google Can Help Enhanced Campaigns Reach Their Potential

Google Enhanced Campaigns It's been over a year since Google publicly announced Enhanced Campaigns for AdWords, and just shy of a year since the mandatory transition date in late July of 2013. Early on, there was a great deal of consternation surrounding the changes brought by this new campaign model, but advertiser sentiment improved as some of their worst fears failed to materialize. Case in point, the growing consensus seems to be that smartphone cost-per-click has not risen much, if at all, versus desktop CPCs since Enhanced Campaigns were introduced. This concern wasn't well-grounded in the first place, if for no [...]


Mobile SEM Strategy: How Savings.com Increased Mobile Search Revenue By 1000 Percent YoY

mobile-search-featured When Google announced Enhanced Campaigns last year, like many marketers, the team at coupon deals site Savings.com was skeptical and surprised that they would be forced to adjust their approach to mobile. In a soon-to-be-released case study from Google, Savings.com shares how they quickly pivoted to embrace a mobile-first approach that has since trickled down from marketing to all areas of the business including product development. I spoke with Savings.com head of marketing Seth Barnes about the move to a mobile-first strategy. Barnes said they had been focusing on improving the user ex [...]


Put Big Data To Work To Build Better Search Ads

Bing Ads Ad Copy Variable Not too long ago, if I said “big data” to someone, I got a blank look in return. Now, big data is the topic du jour. People in healthcare, politics, industry... all are talking about it and how big data is changing the world. Simply put, the concept of big data reflects our growing ability to collect, store and analyze huge amounts of data. That data comes from all manner of sources – credit card purchases, posts on social media sites, public records, mapping software on mobile phones, search-engine queries, weather sensors – you name it. Everywhere in the world, devices and pe [...]


Google Now Testing Knowledge Graph Popups In AdWords Ads

homes for sale 80433   Google Search knowledge graph Back in January, Google formally rolled out popups with Knowledge Graph information about certain sites in the organic search results. Now it appears these popups are being tested in ads. Ariana Wolf, a search strategist at 90octane, provided screenshots of the Knowledge Graph popups appearing on ads for a couple of real estate focused searches last night. I haven't been able to replicate the testing, and Wolf says she was only able to find them showing on a handful of searches. The results only display on the top ad spots, not in the right rail, and pull from Wikipedia like their organic c [...]


Priceline’s Booking.com Surprises As Top AdWords Impression-Earner Among 12,000+ US Travel Advertisers In 2013

google-adwords-featured Travel advertisers spent three quarters of a billion dollars on Google AdWords in the U.S. last year, according to AdGooroo's annual review of AdWords activity in the U.S. travel sector. Nearly 12,700 travel advertisers competed for visibility on more than 50,000 keywords. Booking.com captured more impressions on Google AdWords desktop/tablet in the U.S. than any other travel advertiser, surging to the top spot from number seven in 2012. Based in Amsterdam, and owned by Priceline, Booking.com invested heavily in U.S. television ads as well last year as it makes a play beyond its European fo [...]


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