Top 3 Paid Search Marketing Features Underused By In-House SEM’s

Are in-house search engine marketers taking full advantage of all the features and tools at their fingertips?

Being more organized, efficient, or better informed may not require additional special tools or staff, but just better utilization of the fantastic features already provided for free by search engines. In-house marketers are always under pressure to do more and taking full advantage of these features and tools is a step in the right direction.

My Client Center

That agencies and consultants are the only users of AdWords’ My Client Center is a common misconception. While the multiple account management framework was created so that agencies could see their client accounts via one master login, it is also a really useful tool for more complex in-house search marketing programs.

While one AdWords account can hold a lot more keywords and campaigns than it used to, organizationally it may not be useful to keep everything in one account. For example, having a large desktop/laptop targeted set of campaigns and separately a large set of mobile campaigns for the same AdGroups can become very confusing to have in one account. Mistakes are far more likely to happen in this scenario and are harder to check and catch.

Keeping all mobile in a separate account makes it easy to check targeting, do reports, change ads, bids and other optimizations without the worry that you may be referencing the wrong AdGroup. As an added bonus, naming conventions can stay the same for easy comparison of mobile vs. non-mobile campaigns or AdGroups across accounts.

Multiple accounts are also useful for launching new languages or websites. Adding a significant amount of new campaigns to an existing account can possibly be a drag on quality scores.

While it’s important to try new things and quickly scale marketing support for new initiatives, it might not be something you want impacting the core campaigns that are highly optimized and have a long history of solid performance. A new account can sequester these riskier, new campaigns and give them plenty of room for future expansion.

Lastly, for organizations with multiple in-house search managers, having separate accounts and an MCC can allow full access for the most senior staff but limited access for more junior help.

Offline Editors

Both AdCenter and AdWords provide offline editor tools, but surprisingly many in-house search marketing managers don’t use them, or use them effectively. I complete 90% of search marketing work I do in offline editors and only 10% online.

Almost anything you can do online can be done more quickly in an offline editor, with the added advantage of not needing to be online to do it. Never be hampered by slow loading or a spotty connection again!

Exporting and importing new AdGroups and Campaigns between accounts is a huge time saver for account expansion tasks. Adding new keywords by importing from a spreadsheet list, duplicating campaigns for different targeting groups, like mobile, and easily checking changes or new work before setting live are all quickly and easily done in an offline editor.

Offline editor features are increasingly robust in their functionality. The ability to provide stats, filters, search, and to view multiple accounts are all standard features. Copy and pasting and import and export functions are invaluable time savers to any in-house search marketer. Now if only AdWords Editor will add find and replace!

Impression Share Reports

Warning! Impression share reports may become addictive. Impression share is available via AdWords and reports on the percent of time a particular AdGroup is being displayed and how much rank is lost.

The report not only displays a percentage for all opportunities to display (broad match), but reports on the exact match percentage as well. For in-house search marketers obsessed with if their ads are showing up as much as they could, these stats are like crack.

Impression Share Report

All in-house search engine marketers should be checking these reports regularly for lost opportunities due to low budgets, bids, quality scores or overly stringent matching.

This report is especially useful during peak seasons when program performance is pushed to the maximum. Will raising bids result in increased traffic? How much more? Or during budgeting, how much room does a program have to spend more? Questions in-house search marketers are often asked by management are magically answered!

Opinions expressed in the article are those of the guest author and not necessarily Search Engine Land.

Related Topics: Channel: Search Marketing | In House Search Marketing


About The Author: is the Vice President, Marketing at Viator,the leading provider of destination activities worldwide, and also blogs on in-house search engine marketing issues at

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  • Joey Davidson

    Really? Who doesn’t use AdWords Editor? I can’t imagine trying to manage an account without it.

  • Shawn Lyles

    I agree with Joey, if you are not using adwords editor when managing your adwords campaigns there is a big problem. Thank You Kelly for the Great Post!

  • Tim Dineen

    This article has nothing to do with In-House marketers. I resent the implication that Inhousers don’t use the same tools that Agency folks do – and its frankly silly to suggest such. Of course, as needed, we use the MCC, offline editors and reports. 

  • Chris Lee

     Completely agree with Tim. Using everything suggested in this article is fundamental to advertising on Google regardless of working agency side or inhouse……
    I have worked in both roles and can’t see why anyone wouldn’t be using these features.

  • Victor Sun

    Completely agree with Tim and Chris. Have worked in both agency and in-house and these features are essential and it is silly to suggest in-house marketers don’t use the same tools that agency folks do.

  • Maciek eF

    is it ok to have multiply accounts for one client? I thought it is against google’s regulations…

    p.s. I’m with Chris ant Tim..:)

  • Andrew Connors

    What was great about it?

  • Andrew Connors


    Please elaborate on imp share reports.  Your insight is impressive. 

  • nihonjon

    This falls under the pattern for trash content so I’m not surprised by the lack of insight it brings.

    (superlative) + # + (claim)

    If this were adtext it’d be rejected!

    I remember when semland had worthwhile…

  • Rob Klein Gunnewiek

    It is and it isn’t against the policy. Yes it is against the policy to target the same with different accounts. But if you run campaigns in NL, Germany and Belgium, then you are allowed to use separate accounts. Or if the one is set on mobile and the other on normal pc’s, then too it is allowed to have separate accounts. 

    As long as it is clear that the targetting is different, then there is no problem. 

    It becomes sketchy when you have two different channels but selling the same product (for example you have to online stores for plants, two different brands, but they both sell plants). If that is the case, then you better contact Google Adwords to sort it out. Because their technique  is smart enough and it will find similarities, where as humans these sometimes can’t. If they do, they will ban either one or even both accounts. 

  • Pat Grady

    Impression Share reports are like news stories that report the average number of times married couples have sex… one partner should consider the other’s true needs before drawing any “firm” conclusions.


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