To help you fuller understand the new terminology in your Dashboard report and the changes that Google has made to drop the Average Position metric, here are the definitions of these two new important terms that appear in your reports.
Explanation of Search Top IS (Impression Share)
Search top impression share (IS) is the impressions you’ve received in the top location on the search result page divided by the estimated number of impressions you were eligible to receive in the top location. Use this metric to bid on the top page location.
The top location is anywhere ads appear above the organic search results. Eligibility is based on your current ads’ targeting settings, approval statuses, bids, and quality.
Explanation of Search Abs. (Absolute) Top IS (Impression Share)
“Search absolute top impression share” is the percentage of your Search ad impressions that are shown in the most prominent Search position.
Absolute top impression share = absolute top impressions / total eligible top impressions
What this means for you:
By using two new metrics, Google more clearly details where your ads fall in the competitive auction for first page placement. Google no longer shows when your ads appear underneath the organic search results in position 6-10 or on the second page of search results.
By reviewing these new metrics, you can identify if your bids, budget, and quality score which are used to determine ad rank are high enough to support ads appearing in the positions above the search results either in any position or the very top position.
If you are not budget restrained, meaning that you have additional marketing dollars to spend, here is a quick primer on how to know if it makes sense to increase your Google Ads spending budget.
First, look at your campaign level results and sort the data for yesterday. If you did not spend your full budget yesterday, raising your daily budget will have no impact. Make sure to check a few days on top of just yesterday to assure that you are seeing enough results to be sure.
Second, if your program is profitable for you meaning are getting leads which leave room for profit, then the rule of thumb is to increase your ad spend as long as you have a positive ROI or return on investment. Make sure to look at the average cost per conversion when you evaluate what your leads cost versus what you make per lead.
It is important to have an awareness of important facts that are unique for your business such as one out of every ten leads makes a purchase or becomes a regular customer and regular customers typically will stay five years with us and have a lifetime value of X.
I do not recommend raising your ad spend budget without thought to assure that Google Ads is an investment in your growth and not an expense.
That being said for accounts that have taken the approach of increasing the ad spend without a limit while there is still positive ROI, the results can be absolutely, positively, mind boggling and wonderful.
In Google Ads, you can compete effectively against large competitors who are spending a lot of money on Google Ads with a few creative approaches.
First, consider taking the gloves off. We will routinely target competitor names in very competitive spaces. Our ad text will show dynamic keyword insertion and phrases in the ad text like (Competitor’s Name) Too Expensive? Check out (Your Company Name) and then showcase features. Similar to (Competitor Name) is also another great way to get traffic and bleed off prospects who may have never known about you and were searching for your competitor.
Be watchful about the time of day your ads show. If you are competing against a company with a very large advertising budget, consider bidding down slow times of the day or times that do not typically convert for you and show your ads at your regular cost per click in peak times. This strategy keeps your name out there but focuses budget in peak decision making times.
Consider Display advertising and use In Market as a setting. This will show your ads in the Display Network and targets readers or browsing prospects that are actively looking for your competitor or services you offer.
If you are looking to boost your Google Ads exposure and be more competitive in your marketplace, I invite you to visit our website to find out more about McCord Web Services and what we do.
A new campaign type called Discovery Ads is coming to Google Ads later this year. It has been in beta for select advertisers but will be rolled out to all users later in 2019.
Discovery Ads will show on Google Discover, Gmail, YouTube and other Google properties. They consist of a swipeable photo carousel that renders ads by platform and artificial intelligence. They are supposed to anticipate consumer needs. Users so far have claimed 25% lower cost per lead.
In addition to Discovery Ads look for a new ad format for search called Gallery Ads. These photo heavy ads will allow 4 to 8 images with a 70 character tag line. Beta users claim 25% more interactions.
Both of these new items from Google are focused on products and cater to shoppers. You won’t be using either of these formats for services – just retail selling.
Deciding what to measure on Google Ads as a conversion has significant impact for your account performance. This is especially true when it comes to automated bidding.
For example, if you include page views in your conversions, you may skew results for any bidding algorithms you may use in the future.
When I manage an account, I look to include sales, completed web forms, and website phone calls as conversions. Other items that I may consider important depending on the client and what they are selling may be page views, whitepaper downloads, opening of the chat form. Typically I will consider those lower value actions in the “all conversion” category but not in the “conversion” category.
Doing so allows me to tell the bidding AI what conversions I really consider of value. Although I can add both sets of conversions to my reports, most decisions as to strategy should be based only on the high value conversions.
If you are not sure which and what you are tracking, click the wrench at the top right of your Google Ads account, then go to conversions. Take a look to see what data you are considering important and click on those specific actions to add or remove them from your reports.
You do not lose any data, it is simply whether those actions will be shown in the conversions column or the all conversions column.
Help Google bid smarter for you by only including “conversions” to give you better performance.
Don’t have a Google Ads account manager? Trying to go it alone to save money on management fees? Unless you are trained and work daily in Google Ads you may be setting yourself up for failure.
Google Ads is not a set it and forget it program especially if your ad spend is over $2,000 per month for clicks. As Google Ads is a pay per click platform that operates as an auction you may be missing out on valuable activity that could generate leads for your account.
I have personally found that at an absolute minimum, there should be a weekly or more frequent review of your Google Ads account to optimize for performance.
When we do our review, we look for anomalies, areas where the ad spend is not fruitful – such as by device. We look for emerging new keywords and negative keywords to keep an account targeted. In addition familiarity with account performance metrics is key to squeezing the most out of Google Ads for your business’ benefit.
As Google Ads is incredibly powerful and yet supremely complicated, I just do not recommend going it alone when it comes to account management. Without tight controls from an experienced account manager, you can spend big on Google Ads without a measurable return.