Welcome to the latest issue of our regular monthly newsletter which features news, tips and advice on effective website marketing, with a particular focus on search engine marketing techniques and trends.
In our first article this month we take a look at Google’s recent introduction of a new Smart Bidding strategy called ‘Maximize Conversions’ and how that can help to make the most out of an AdWords budget. The second article looks at Google’s rollout of the new look AdWords ‘Experience’ and how the new design and set of tools makes AdWords significantly easier to use for advertisers.
In the final article this month we take a look at the release of ‘Posts’ for all Google My Business users. This provides another element to a company’s business listing, which allows the addition of more details including the highlighting of limited time promotions, events or new products.
You can read more below, or you can also browse through previous editions of the newsletter by month. You can also follow us on Twitter for the latest developments during the month, or follow our Facebook page or Google+ page for updates.
On to this month’s edition…
Google Introduces ‘Maximize Conversions’ with Smart Bidding
Google recently introduced a new AdWords Smart Bidding strategy called ‘Maximize Conversions’. The aim of this is to enable AdWords managers to get the most conversions from their marketing budget using an automated system.
It can be challenging to know exactly how to initially set the right bid and then adjust it to ensure that your advertising spend gets the most customers. That’s where Maximize Conversions comes in – it automatically sets the right bid for each auction to help to get the most conversions within the daily budget.
For example, for a clothing retailer who’s trying to quickly sell last season’s styles, Maximize Conversions helps to get the most sales from the existing budget by factoring signals like remarketing lists, time of day, browser and operating system into bids.
Smart Bidding uses Google’s machine learning technology to optimise for conversions across every ad auction (a.k.a “auction-time bidding”). Google cites the case of Trex, a luxury composite decking company that used Maximize Conversions to build brand awareness and saw a “73% increase in conversion volume”.
Google’s made it relatively easy to implement Maximize Conversions, which can then be tested by getting insights and by monitoring bid strategies to understand its performance.
This brand new bidding strategy has yet to be experienced and has the potential to improve the ROAS on AdWords campaigns, but often with automated bidding that uses Google’s machine learning, it can take a few weeks for that to learn enough to work effectively based on historical conversion data. So there can often be an initial period of ‘bid shock’, when the original max. CPC bids can change dramatically and become more costly. If that initial period can be endured however, the automated bidding can often work well over time.
If you want to know more about how Smart Bidding strategies have the potential to improve your AdWords campaigns, contact us now.
New AdWords ‘Experience’ Coming For All Advertisers
Every year Google organises a conference to announce new trends and developments in their products, with AdWords being a keenly awaited event that took place at the end of May this year. With mobile devices becoming ever more common in the way people use the web, Google revealed new tools to help advertisers reach this market and manage their campaigns more efficiently. Some of these are already rolling out, and others will be appearing in the coming months.
Most notable from these new developments is the new look AdWords ‘experience’ which is already available for most advertisers, with a new design and set of tools in the account to help these advertisers visualise and manage their campaigns more effectively. The redesign makes AdWords significantly easier to use, and is designed to help users identify and reach their own marketing goals and to get things done with minimal effort.
Included in this new AdWords experience is a new Overview page, which automatically presents the advertiser with relevant insights about their account performance, so that users can focus on any issues and take action more quickly. There’s also a new interface to help create new campaigns around specific goals, and although experienced AdWords advertisers may not need this approach, it’s there to try and make things simpler and quicker for most advertisers.
There is also a performance estimates panel, so that advertisers can see the key metrics that are relevant when planning search or display campaigns – although as before, these can show quite a range of numbers and may not relate that closely to actual figures once a campaign starts running. There is also a landing page report, which uses Google’s mobile testing tool to identify if pages are loading quickly and are mobile friendly to site visitors – a key element in helping to improve conversions as we outlined in our November 2016 newsletter.
On the subject of landing pages, Google has also announced the integration of Google Optimize with AdWords, so that users will be able to test their landing pages and gain insights about ads more efficiently. The new Optimize tool was launched earlier this year (as highlighted in our April 2017 newsletter) and is designed to help marketers test and deliver custom site experiences to improve performance. With the new integration between the accounts, users can quickly and easily create new versions of landing pages and then apply them to any combination of AdWords campaigns, ad groups, and keywords without the need for coding or Webmaster input.
All these new tools are designed to help AdWords advertisers constantly improve the management and performance of their accounts, so that of course they achieve great results and ideally spend more advertising dollars! For each advertiser, these tools should be considered, tested and used to see what improvements can be achieved in the ongoing process to achieve a better return on ad spend than their competitors.
If you’d like to know more about the new AdWords experience and how it could help your campaigns, please contact us for more information.
‘Posts’ Released Within Google My Business
Google ‘Posts’ first launched in January 2016 under the name ‘candidate cards,’ but they were only available initially for political candidates to post content that would show up for relevant political search queries. A couple of months later, the feature was available for a very limited number of small businesses. It has slowly expanded since then until the recent full launch for all users.
This has been long anticipated and is now rolling out to all small businesses that use the Google My Business (GMB) platform. The content will appear in both Google search and maps results.
There are several options when writing a post:
- Upload an image
- Write text (up to 300 words)
- Add an event title (with start and end dates and times).
Users can also add call-to-action buttons including “Learn more,” “Reserve,” “Sign up,” “Buy” or “Get offer.”
Google states this give businesses the ability to:
- Share daily specials or current promotions that encourage new and existing customers to take advantage of offers.
- Promote events and tell customers about upcoming happenings at a specific location.
- Showcase top products and highlight new arrivals.
- Choose one of the available options to connect with customers directly from the Google business listing: give them a one-click path to make a reservation; sign up for a newsletter; learn more about latest offers; or even buy a specific product from the business’s website.
This is a useful development that will help businesses to better promote themselves especially upon mobiles, which has been a primary focus of Google for a while now.
If you’d like more information about the Google Posts for GMB or how your business can benefit from a listing, please contact us now.