How to keep up with macro trends that impact PPC performance
Understanding macro trends is crucial for making informed decisions in PPC. Here are tips for setting up the right monitoring processes.
Understanding macro trends is crucial for making informed decisions within your PPC account. This is why businesses must create a holistic monitoring plan that takes all relevant data points into account.
3 ways to stay on top of PPC performance covered how to monitor your paid search performance comprehensively.
This article will demonstrate how to set up monitoring and analysis processes for macro-level events that impact your overall PPC performance and business.
Contextualize your PPC performance with macro-trend monitoring
Various external factors may impact your paid search efforts. Thus, your PPC monitoring plan should help you surface emerging trends in your industry so you can adapt your advertising strategies accordingly.
Tracking news cycles, PR, and competitor activity can provide valuable insights into your industry and how your advertising performance compares.
Here are some benefits of macro-trend monitoring for PPC:
- Crisis management: Monitoring PR through Google alerts can help you quickly identify negative press or publicity. You can then immediately mitigate potential damage to your brand reputation.
- Opportunity identification: When you are on top of competitor activity, you’ll know what’s working and not in your industry. Use this to determine new growth opportunities and develop strategies to differentiate your brand from competitors.
- Benchmarking: Comparing your PPC campaigns to your competitors’ also provides benchmarks for campaign performance. Clear benchmarks set realistic goals and expectations for your advertising efforts and specify areas that require optimization.
- Cost savings: By monitoring macro-trends, you can optimize your ad spend based on industry trends and market conditions.
This can result in significant cost savings and help companies to achieve a better return on investment (ROI) for their advertising efforts.
Tools for monitoring macro trends
These monitoring tools are useful for staying on top of PPC macro trends.
- Google Analytics: This free web analytics tool provides data on website traffic, user behavior, and conversions. It helps you track and analyze your paid search campaigns’ performance and identify improvement areas.
- Google Search Console: Tracking organic search metrics, such as impressions, clicks, and click-through rates, can inform your paid search strategy.
- Google Trends: This free tool tracks search trends and patterns across different regions and languages.
- Google Alerts: You can customize this to track mentions of keywords or phrases in a specific language, region, or source, such as news, blogs, or videos. Choose the frequency of alerts, ranging from “as it happens” to “once a day” or “once a week.”
- Earnings reports: You would be surprised at how informative earnings reports for publicly traded companies can be. If you have a client in this category, you should attend their earnings calls.
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Anticipate potential trends and fluctuations with projections
Year-over-year (YoY) projections based on historical data can set realistic expectations for your campaign result.
YoY projections improve forecasting accuracy, enable you to make data-driven decisions, facilitate long-term strategic planning, and improve accountability.
Tools to build performance projections
A few free resources can help you build projections based on your historical PPC performance.
Microsoft Advertising, Google Ads and Google Sheets
Download your historical performance data directly from the ad platforms (Google and Microsoft) to create month-to-month projections for the upcoming year.
You will want to adjust your forecasts by excluding data impacted by specific strategies or changes in your PPC accounts.
For example, your company may have run a one-time sale over the summer, which boosted sales. But this is not an annual sale, so it should not be built into your projections model.
Google Performance Planner
Performance Planner is a free tool offered by Google Ads that helps advertisers create and forecast the performance of their Google Ads campaigns.
You need to input essential information about your campaign, such as your target location, ad format, bidding strategy, and budget.
You'll also need to list keywords you plan to target in your campaign. Once you've entered this information, the Performance Planner will analyze historical performance data from your Google Ads account and use machine learning algorithms to project how your campaigns will perform in the future.
If you want to develop a more robust projections program, you could check out the following tools:
- Optmyzr: Optmyzr has a forecasting feature where you can estimate the potential performance of your Google Ads campaigns based on your budget and other key metrics.
- AdStage: AdStage lets you estimate the potential performance of your campaigns across multiple advertising channels, including search engines.
- NinjaCat: Ninjacat's ability to forecast PPC performance involves using historical data to predict future outcomes. The platform can analyze past PPC performance data, including clicks, impressions, conversions, and other relevant metrics.
Competitor monitoring informs your macro-level analysis
Regularly checking your competitors' advertising activity can give you a better understanding of what's working for them and what isn't.
Tools to help with competition monitoring
Discover competitive insights with the core PPC platforms. Google and Microsoft provide tools that offer insights into competitor activity.
Google Ads Auction Insights
Google Ads Auction Insights is a free tool that compares your performance to other advertisers in the same auction.
You can use it to see how often your ads are shown alongside your competitors' ads and identify areas where you may fall behind.
Microsoft Advertising Competition Tab
The Competition Tab provides valuable competitive insights for your campaigns. Their Auction Insights reports can give an overview of your competitors' performance metrics and how they compare to yours.
You can use Google Alerts to monitor your company, but it's also an excellent strategy to set up alerts for your main competitors. They may make significant announcements that would be insightful for your campaigns.
If you have critical competitors in your industry, you should also consider attending their earnings! You can gain valuable insights from these calls. Companies provide earnings reports, strategic initiatives, and more.
Some helpful paid subscription tools can help inform your competitive monitoring practices. Check out the tools listed below if you need more than the free tools.
- Semrush allows you to analyze your competitors' organic and paid search strategies. You can use it to determine which keywords your competitors rank, what ad copy they use, and their budget.
- SpyFu specializes in competitive analysis for PPC advertising. It lets you see your competitors' ad history, top-performing keywords, and ad copy variations. You can also use it to identify negative keywords that your competitors use, which can help you optimize your campaigns.
- SimilarWeb: SimilarWeb provides insights into your competitor's website traffic, including where their traffic is coming from, what pages are performing well, and what channels they use to drive traffic.
Stay on top of macro trends
Numerous external factors can impact your PPC performance. Therefore, you should prioritize campaign performance and optimize based on that data.
Understanding your competitive landscape and monitoring trends and competitors will help provide you with a slight edge.
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