In this strategy guide for advanced Google Ads, you will get to know how you can optimize your bidding strategy. The very beginning is to understand three major keys to bid success:
- Remember your goal – connect your message to the right prospect; pay at least as possible to reach that right person!
- Don’t relax – always stay on top of your bidding and adjust when needed; have both hands on the wheel!
- Don’t trust Google when it comes to money – make sure you make the most of your campaigns
Step 1: Manual CPC
This is where you can set the amount that you are targetting to pay for every click on your ads. You must control this from the very beginning, especially if you’re just getting started, and this phase can be from one day to a week long. This way you can test what’s working and what’s not, where you can try out different targeting, keywords, different ads also, landing or sales pages. You are simply going to collect data because you need to meet the costs and the people’s reaction to your brand.
The important step here is to closely monitor every ad – what’s not working, you’re going to immediately cut off. You don’t want to spend your money there. If the keyword is too expensive, cut it off.
Step 2: Enhanced CPC
With Manual CPC we set the bidding to the highest amount of money that we are ready to pay and that’s our deal with Google. With Enhanced CPC you can maximize your conversions – you also set the maximum bid, BUT you are willing to pay more if Google finds a person who is more likely to do what you want him/her to do on your website. So, here will Google automatically increase/decrease the bid according to their opinion of that person’s behavior on your website. In other words, you adjust the amount you are willing to pay and permit Google to optimize your cost for the right result.
Once you have this kind of campaign, you can quickly get a lot of data on what targeting is working or how your landing pages are performing.
If you’re willing to agree, once you get the results, it’s not important what money you paid for them as long as you have them. From there on you can continue because you know that at least some of the combination is working!
In these first two steps, we are testing if the direction we are going in is right. Now you want MORE of the SAME (good) result and there comes the step 3.
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Step 3: Automated Bidding Strategy
Keep in mind that it’s best if you start with these after these previous two steps – you need to have data that provide the success of your ads and landing pages and only then you can give Google a little more control.
Why do we first need the Manual and Enhanced CPCs? If you go straight to Automated Bidding, you will need to pay Google way more and yes, they will find your customers, but at what cost? Prepare the targeting step by step and then Google will know where and what to find for you, which will cost less, of course. It will help you increase and optimize conversions. You don’t need all of the results from the previous CPC campaigns, just some will be enough to continue with automated bidding strategies.
Now we can turn on to Cost Per Action (CPA), where you determine how much you want to pay for a specific action the customer takes. Also, if you have ads for different products, think about how much do you want to spend on each ad. Here you are probably going to start up high and work your way to the lower CPA.
If you already had an ad that was working for you, then you can try out Return On Ad Spend (ROAS) targeting where you tell Google: “Every time I spend $[amount], I want to make $[amount].” Of course, be reasonable here and understand that you will probably need to start lower and work your way up.
Step 4: Bid Adjustments
The details of your campaign can be crucial, specifically when we talk about the time of day, the day of the week, location and the device that’s being used (!). Based on the results you get, adjust your bidding for each of these categories and control the frequency of showing your ads.
For example, if Sunday at 10 am works the best for your ad, you can increase your budget for that period. This also applies to the location and devices. Keep in mind that if something isn’t working, you are going to exclude it from your targeting.
Step 5: Campaign Splice
This is the last step in order to get the maximum of these good results. Since we saw what’s working way better than everything else, which keyword, who to target, what time in the day, which day of the week, which location, etc. at this point we can collect all of that data and create a new campaign. A new campaign just for these targeting combinations that seem to work the best for you.
If you take that one keyword is working the best for the example, you will maybe need to create a new ad AND a landing page specifically for that one keyword.