Automate Campaign Management Tasks Across AdWords, Bing, Facebook & LinkedIn

Posted by on Aug 18, 2014 in Advertising | 2 Comments
Automate Campaign Management Tasks Across AdWords, Bing, Facebook & LinkedIn

adstage automated rulesManaging ad campaigns can get pretty repetitive when you need to run through the same handful of steps every time you optimize a campaign. And when going through these steps is a chore, you’ll be tempted to procrastinate which can result in a real hit to your ROI.

Fortunately, we just launched a brand new app that automates these tedious campaign optimization tasks for you. You can now edit your bids, pause low-performing ads, schedule/day-part your campaigns and more automatically! We’re incredibly excited about our new Automated Rules app and can’t wait for you to try it out. In this post, you’ll be able to check out some of the app’s features and see examples of it in action.


Intuitive Rule Creation

It’s easy to create custom automated rules in AdStage. Just follow our simple “if this, then that” format to define the action and required conditions.

intuitive automated rule builder

Cross-Network Compatibility

The Automated Rules app isn’t limited to any one network. You can create rules for Google AdWords, Bing Ads, LinkedIn Ads or even Facebook Ads

build automated rules across google adwords, bing ads, facebook ads, or linkedin ads

Easy Rule Management

Making adjustments to your rules is easy with the management page. You can edit, pause, delete and even duplicate your rules quickly in order to automate your full portfolio of campaigns. You can even add and remove campaigns from your rules after you’ve created them.

Manage automated rules

Tweet About Rules

Example Rules

1) Pause Low-Performing Ads

It’s important to review your campaign’s ads regularly so you can pause the ads that perform poorly. This is because there’s an opportunity cost to showing bad ads: every time you show a bad ad, you miss out on the chance of showing a good ad. Bad ads hurt your chances of winning over customers and can hurt your quality scores. You want to make the most of every ad impression by using your best ad whenever possible.

This rule will automate the process of identifying and pausing low-performing ads so you can always put your best foot forward and improve the quality of your campaigns. You’ll want to adjust the details in consideration of your campaign’s performance trends.

  • IF Clicks are greater than 10 & Impressions are greater than 100 & CTR is less than 0.90%
  • THEN Pause ad
  • ON Mondays at 9pm, using data from the last 14 days

pause low performing ads

2) Edit Keyword Bids

Your keyword’s bid (or, in social campaigns, your ad’s bid) is an incredibly powerful variable that directly affects how profitable your campaigns are. Bid too low and you’ll miss out on valuable opportunities to reach interested customers. Bid too high and your customer acquisition costs will outweigh the customer’s value. To address this, you must audit your keyword performance regularly and adjust their bids to reach your goals.

This rule automates that process by editing your bids in light of your KPIs. You’ll want to adjust the details in consideration of your campaign’s performance.

  • IF Average position is less than 2 & Clicks are greater than 10 & Impressions are greater than 100 & Average CPC is greater than $2.50
  • THEN Decrease bid by $0.10
  • ON Mondays at 9pm, using data from the last 14 days

edit keyword bids

3) Schedule Campaigns

Ad scheduling (also known as day-parting) is another powerful dimension of campaign optimization. Scheduling lets you turn off your ads at the times of day (or week) that they’re less profitable. It’s a great way to limit wasted spend so you can devote your budget towards the more profitable times of day.

For example, if your ads have lower click through rates and conversion rates on nights and weekends, you might want to schedule your ads to turn off during that time. This rule brings day-parting to all networks, including Facebook and LinkedIn Ads.

This example below shows how a Schedules Campaigns rule could be configured. You’ll want to adjust the schedule to match the times you want your campaign to run.

  • SCHEDULE Campaigns to run Monday through Friday from 5AM to 6PM Pacific

schedule campaigns day-parting

Automated Rules in the Press

We’ve received some great press coverage about our new Automated Rules app this past week! Check out some of the featured articles below:

Get Automated Rules with AdStage

Access the new Automated Rules app and manage AdWords, Bing, Facebook & LinkedIn ad campaigns together from one place with AdStage. Start your free trial today!

No credit card required. Try AdStage risk-free for 14 days.

Promote Your App with Google, Facebook, and Twitter Ads

Posted by on Jul 18, 2014 in How-Tos | 4 Comments
Promote Your App with Google, Facebook, and Twitter Ads

The app industry continues to grow substantially, following increased usage of smartphones. Gartner reported in 2013, 102 billion apps were downloaded, equating to $26 billion in sales. Ad budgets are shifting to mobile and the ad networks are accommodating. To capitalize on growing demand, advertisers can now create app campaigns across Google AdWords, Facebook Ads, and most recently, Twitter Ads.

Dedicated Campaigns

Promoting an app can be different than running a lead generation or retail e-commerce campaign. Take advantage of each networks app campaign settings.

Create at least one unique campaign per app, and assign a budget.


Increase Installs

Nothing pains an advertiser more than when they build a thorough campaign only to see click-throughs bounce off the landing page.

App installs ads remove the need for a destination url, instead allowing the target audience to download the app right on the ad itself.

Drive App Engagement

Use this ad type to remarket to app users, keeping them actively using your app.

App engagement ads help increase monetization, aiding in the engagement and retention of the app.

There are many types of apps (subscription based, in-app purchases, free with ads, etc.), and each will have a unique set of KPIs to measure engagement. Optimize towards your core KPIs, driving more users to complete your desired action.

*Note: AdWords app engagement campaigns are currently in a closed beta.

Track Conversions

Set up conversion tracking to report on total installs, cost-per-install metrics, or custom engagement metrics.

App Conversion Tracking by Network


Use a trusted 3rd party partnerLearn more.


Add a snippet of code from Facebook to your app or use a trusted 3rd party partner.


Add a snippet of code from Google to your app.

Optimize for KPIs

While impressions, clicks, click through rate, and avg. CPM/CPC trends are important to track, advertisers should be laser focused on two key metrics – total conversions (which can include engagement) & cost per conversion.

Continually test different targeting and bid combinations to increase  new installs, cost-effectively.

Test conversion optimizer bidding algorithms to help drive additional revenue.

Advanced Bidding Options


Focus on installs (conversions optimizer)


Optimized CPM, bidding on actions.


The release of dedicated app campaigns have armed advertisers with a lot more flexibility and optimization tools when promoting an app. As mobile usage continues to increase, app ad budgets will also grow.

How To Preview Your AdWords Ads Without Paying For It

Posted by on Jul 2, 2014 in Advertising | 10 Comments
How To Preview Your AdWords Ads Without Paying For It

adstage ad on google adwordsWho doesn’t love seeing a finished version of their project? Whether its an ad, a postcard or a deck, you’re filled with a sense of pride every time you look at your just-completed handiwork. But while there’s no harm in sending yourself a piece of direct mail or a promotional email, there are downsides to seeing your search ads in the wild.

If you search for your ad on Google, you’ll pay for it… directly or indirectly. In this post, I’ll show to how to preview your search ads without paying for it.

Why You Shouldn’t Search for Your Ads

Once you start running ads on Google AdWords, it can be incredibly tempting to do a search and see your ads serving in the wild. But you have to resist the urge because conducting searches to check up on your ads can hurt your performance.

The issue is that when you perform a search that triggers your ad, you rack up ad impressions that don’t lead to clicks. This can lower your click through rate (and reputation) and it can prevent your ad from running as often as it should. Do it enough times, and you might never be shown the ad again because Google might think you’re uninterested in that ad and will instead show you ads from your competition. Of course, don’t click on your ad either, since that will directly cost you money.

How To Preview Your Ads on Google AdWords

To check up on your ads without affecting your performance, you can use the Google AdWords Ad Preview Tool. It’s like an alternative where the impressions are free. The links don’t work, but you’ll be able to see if your ads are running.

Google AdWords Ad Preview & Diagnosis Toolbar

Instead of searching for your ad on Google, use the Ad Preview and Diagnosis tool to see where your ad appears in search results for a particular search term. This is an easy way to check how your ad appears in context, and the tool provides the same results as a Google search, without accumulating any impressions. Also, the Ad Preview and Diagnosis tool will tell you if your ad isn’t showing and why, so you can make any needed changes and begin reaching customers.

Google AdWords Ad PreviewGoogle AdWords Ad Preview & Diagnosis

How To Preview Your Ads on Bing Ads

If you want to preview your ads on Bing without affecting your performance, you can use the Bing Ads Ad Preview & Diagnostics Tool which offers functionality that is very similar to AdWords.

bing ads ad preview and diagnostics

Now that you know how to preview your ads without paying for it, you can admire your handiwork without accruing costly impressions. For more help, check out our full list of Google AdWords help articles.

How to Create Remarketing Campaigns in Google AdWords

Posted by on Jun 23, 2014 in How-Tos | 8 Comments
How to Create Remarketing Campaigns in Google AdWords

With Twitter & Facebook introducing self-serve remarketing capabilities in the past few weeks, it seemed right to give credit to the network that offered it first. In this post, I’ll walk you through creating a remarketing campaign in Google AdWords.

About Remarketing

Remarketing (also known as retargeting), allows you to show unique ads to people who’ve visited your website before. It’s a great way to bring back people who didn’t become a customer the first time they came to your site, or previous customers who you want to engage with your site again.

Creating Your Remarketing List

The first step to creating your remarketing campaign is creating a list and defining how your audience will be added to it. For example, you may want to create a list for all people who visit your website, or just the people who visit your pricing page. Let’s walk through the process of creating your remarketing list:

1. Click “Shared library” in the left navigation.

google adwords dashboard

2. Click “View” in the “Audiences” section.

3. Click “+ Remarketing List”

google adwords remarketing audiences

4.  Give your list a descriptive name. (e.g., Visitors of the pricing page)

5. Select how you’d like to segment visitors in the “Who to add to your list” section. (e.g., “Visitors of a page” with the URL containing “/pricing”)

google adwords new remarketing list

6. Decide how long each visitor should remain in the list in “membership duration.” 30 days is a good place to start unless you have a lot of traffic to your site, in which case you can get away with something as short as 3 days. You want it to be short enough where people still care about what you offer, but large enough that there is over 500 visitors in your list at any given time.

7. Click “Save.”

Installing Your Remarketing Tag

Before your list will begin collecting visitors, you’ll first need to copy the remarketing tag from the “Audiences” page and paste it onto your site.

google adwords remarketing tag
google adwords remarketing tag install

Once your tag is on your site, people who visit your site will be added to the appropriate remarketing lists.

Targeting Your Remarketing List in a Campaign

Now that you’ve installed your tag and defined who you want to remarket to, you just need to set up a campaign that targets your list with ads.

1. Create a new “Display Network Only” campaign and make sure it’s type is either “Remarketing” or “All features.”
Note: You can also use your remarketing list to customize your search ads for people who’ve visited you site before.

google adwords remarketing new campaign

2. Follow the campaign creation steps and create at least one ad group.

3. From your ad group, click the “Display Network” tab.

4. Click “+ Targeting” to modify the targeting.

google adwords ad group targeting

5. Click the “Add targeting” dropdown and select “Interests and remarketing.”

6. Click the “Remarketing Lists” tab and select your list.

google adwords interests and remarketing targeting

That’s it! Now simply finish populating your campaign with bids and ads and your ads will begin displaying to people once they leave your site!

Google “Magazine Ads” Both Help and Harm Advertisers

Posted by on May 15, 2014 in Advertising | No Comments
Google “Magazine Ads” Both Help and Harm Advertisers

Google today announced the launch of “magazine ads” for AdWords. The new format takes your existing text ads and formats them to fit display ad units on webpages in the Google Display Network.

How It Looks

The new ads simply overlay your ad copy on a light background. Google says they’ve designed the format with print magazines in mind, “putting a big emphasis on space and typography and displaying a new look distinctive from our regular text ad.”

google magazine ads banner

No Effort Required, More Inventory

google magazine ads banner

On the surface, this is a great feature for advertisers. Now you can convert your plain text ads into (relatively) attractive image ads. This is great for advertisers that don’t have access to designers to create image ads because no extra work is required to run image ads.

This also opens up your text ads to a wider range of available inventory. Your ads can now appear in display-only ad units on publisher sites.

Higher Ad Prices

But there is a very real drawback to magazine ads for advertisers. The main benefit that Google is touting to it’s AdSense publishers that show the ads on their site is to the detriment of AdWords advertisers: publishers will make more money from their ad units because more advertisers enter the auction. This means more competition for what was display-only inventory and higher ad prices.

What do you think about this news? Share your thoughts in the comment below.

Enhance AdWords Results with Segments

Posted by on May 9, 2014 in Advertising | 12 Comments
Enhance AdWords Results with Segments

When a marketer logs into an AdWords account, their eyes are fixated on the converted clicks and cost/converted clicks columns. They start incessantly drilling into campaigns, ad groups, and finally ads/keywordslooking for opportunities to yield additional conversions, at lower prices.

The next time you log into your account, pause at each level, and take a sip of coffee. Before you’re tempted to drill down further, click the “segment” tab to reveal additional viewpoints.

New Views for Optimization

Segments provide additional slices into your performance data that help you identify new areas to improve results.

Campaign Table Segments to Explore

1. Time -> Hour of the Day

*Note: The metrics will display in military time

Performance by hour can give insight into two powerful optimization strategies:

A) Should you day part your advertising?

Buying habits might fluctuate by time of day. For lean budgets, it might not be worth displaying ads 24 hours a day, instead focusing on the hours that either provide high volumes of conversions, or conversions at attractive prices.

B) Do you need to inflate bids at peak hours?

For example, emergency services can be fiercely competitive at peak morning and evening hours. You may look to increase your bids to ensure prominent placement for these searches.

2. Segment by Network with Search Partners

Google’s Search Partners are a great way to gain additional traffic, often at a lower cost-per-click, and aid in driving more conversions.

At the default campaign level, the results between Google search & Search partners will be blended. By segmenting by network, you can understand if Search partners is yielding positive results or if it should be shut off.

Within the settings tab in a campaign, you have the option to include or exclude Search partners.

Ad Group Table Segments to Explore

1. Click Type

Click type will reveal if the searcher click through happened on the ad copy or extension level.

This is a great way to understand if your extensions are having a positive effect. Extensions such as sitelinks, act as additional reality space that can be used to include additional incentives or calls-to-action to draw attention.

Look to revamp or exclude extensions that are not aiding the overall ad group.

Keyword Table Segments to Explore

1. Device Type

Understand how mobile devices perform versus desktop and tablet searchers.

Based on performance, should you be increasing or decreasing your mobile bids?

You can adjust mobile device bids within the “settings” tab:

2. Top vs. Other

Learn if the best placement for your ads are within the top 1-3 placements, or on the right hand rail; based on conversion volume, or lowest cost per conversion.

If your ads perform better within the top spots, weigh the option of increasing your keyword bid. If the cost/converted click is higher in the top spots, explore possibly lowering down your bids.

Are there segment views you love more than others? Let us know!

Understand and Improve Your Quality Score

Posted by on May 8, 2014 in How-Tos | 8 Comments
Understand and Improve Your Quality Score

The elusive Quality Score… it’s all some search marketers seem to think about when optimizing their PPC campaigns. But there’s no reason to be intimidated. While it’s important to be aware of it, Quality Score is nothing to lose sleep over. In this post, we’ll take a look a look at how Quality Scores work, how they affect you, and learn some best practices to optimize your campaigns with it in mind.

About Quality Score

Quality Score is an estimate of how relevant your ads are. Both Google AdWords and Bing Ads assign your keywords with a Quality Score and you can use it to create more relevant ads.

How Quality Score is Calculated

It’s measured on a scale from 1 to 10. A Quality Score of 1 means your ad for that keyword is extremely irrelevant and it’s unlikely your ad will show regularly. A Quality Score of 10 means your ad for that keyword is extremely relevant and your ad will be shown frequently when eligible.

Although it’s assigned on the keyword level, Quality Score mostly takes your keyword, ad and landing page into consideration when estimating relevance.

Here is the full list of factors according to Google:

  • Your keyword’s expected clickthrough rate (CTR): The expected CTR is based in part on the keyword’s past CTR, or how often that keyword led to clicks on your ad
  • Your display URL’s past CTR: How often you received clicks with your display URL
  • Your account history: The overall CTR of all the ads and keywords in your account
  • The quality of your landing page: How relevant, transparent, and easy-to-navigate your page is
  • Your keyword/ad relevance: How relevant your keyword is to your ads
  • Your keyword/search relevance: How relevant your keyword is to what a customer searches for
  • Geographic performance: How successful your account has been in the regions you’re targeting
  • Your ad’s performance on a site: How well your ad’s been doing on this and similar sites (if you’re targeting the Display Network)
  • Your targeted devices: How well your ads have been performing on different types of devices, like desktops/laptops, mobile devices, and tablets – you get different Quality Scores for different types of devices

Example: Let’s say you’re promoting a website that sells backpacks. If a customer searched Google for “waterproof backpacks,” your ad should talk about waterproof backpacks and point to a page on your site about waterproof backpacks. That level of relevance should earn you a high Quality Score. But if your ad was just about backpacks in general and pointed to your home page, you’d likely earn a low Quality Score, since that is an irrelevant ad to show searchers.


Why Quality Score Matters

Ad networks prefer relevant ads because they offer searchers a great user experience by showing search results with exactly what they’re looking for. If your Quality Scores are high, you can expect to:

  • Earn more impressions and clicks on your ads.
  • Earn a higher position among the sponsored search results on the page.
  • Earn a discounted cost per click as your Ad Rank improves.
  • Include more ad extensions as many extensions require a minimum Quality Score to show.

How to Check Your Quality Score

You can check your Quality Score for campaigns in Google AdWords & Bing Ads by adding it as a column to your keyword table.

Check it in Google AdWords:

  1. Open a keyword table.
  2. Click “Columns,” then “Customize Columns.”
  3. From the “Attributes” metrics, add “Qual. score.”

how to add google adwords quality score columnhow to add google adwords quality score column

Check it in Bing Ads:

  1. Open a keyword table.
  2. Click “Columns.”
  3. Add “Qual. Score.”

how to add bing ads quality score column

Check Google & Bing Quality Scores together in AdStage:

You can see both Google & Bing quality scores together through AdStage.

  1. Open a keyword table (from the folder, campaign or ad group level).
  2. Click “Configure Table.”
  3. Add “Qual. Score.”

how to add adstage quality score column

Diagnose Your Quality Score (AdWords Web UI only)

When looking at a keyword table in the AdWords, you can get diagnose your quality score with additional information about each of the scoring factors. Just click the white speech bubbles next to keyword status to see Google’s estimate of:

google adwords quality score diagnosis

What’s a Good Quality Score?

Your quality score will vary based on how relevant the keyword is to your offer. If the keyword is your brand name, your Quality Score should be closer to 10. If you sell backpacks and the keyword is “duffel bags,” you quality score could be closer to 3.

Here’s my personal interpretation  of Quality Scores:

  • 7-10 – Great Quality Score. Your ads are at an advantage in the auction.
  • 4-6 – Good Quality Score. Your ads are relatively unaffected in the auction.
  • 1-3 – Bad Quality Score. Your ads are at a disadvantage in the auction.

Tips to Improve Your Quality Score

Because Quality Score can offer meaningful improvements to your campaign performance, it’s important to build campaigns with it in mind. The most important being steps that improve your clickthrough rate (CTR).

Reminder: You didn’t start advertising to optimize Quality Scores… so don’t lose sight of the KPIs that matter to you. You want to grow your business, not game your Quality Score.

 Here are the top ways to improve your Quality Score:

  • Add Negative Keywords – Add negative keywords to reduce out irrelevant impressions. Learn more about negative keywords.
  • Make Ads Relevant - Break out keywords into smaller ad groups and populate them with more relevant ads. Learn more about creating ad groups.
  • Make Ads Inviting - Ad Create more effective ad copy that encourages clicks. For example, offer an inviting call to action in your ad like “Try our demo free.” Learn more about creating effective ads.
  • Use Relevant Landing Pages - Choose the most relevant landing page for this keyword, or use a tool like Unbounce to create a new landing page devoted to this keyword. For the example of the keyword “waterproof backbacks,” I’d build a landing page that features content about waterproof backpacks. Learn more about choosing a landing page.

Do you have other tips to improve Quality Scores? Please share it in the comments!

How To Target Similar Customers in AdWords

Posted by on Apr 25, 2014 in Advertising, How-Tos | 20 Comments
How To Target Similar Customers in AdWords

Savvy marketers utilize Facebook’s Lookalike audience targeting to reach new users who are similar to fans or lead lists. But, did you know you could do this in Google AdWords? Google has recently rolled out Remarketing using Smart Lists – allowing you to target potential customers similar to converting visitors.

Use Smart Lists to Drive New Conversions

Within Google Analytics you can create lists that are used for Google Remarketing targeting.

D: Remarketing (aka Retargeting) -

The ability to target people who have previously visited your site, and show them relevant ads across websites or Google search.

Google Analytics Remarketing have many list types:

  • Smart Lists

  • All of my site users

  • Users who visited a specific page/section of my site

  • All users who completed a conversion goal

  • Create your own with segments (custom)

Smart lists target a focused group of users who are most likely to convert on your website, based on previous visitors’ conversion patterns. This list is created by Google, requiring no heavy lifting by the user.

Before you can create a Smart List, ensure two things are already in place:

1. Display Advertising is enabled for Website Tracking

Google Analytics Display Tracking

2. Your Google Analytics Code is appended to support Display Advertising tracking

Find this snippet within your Google Analytics code:

ga.src = (‘https:’ == document.location.protocol ? ‘https://ssl’ : ‘http://www’) +

Ensure it’s replaced with:

ga.src = (‘https:’ == document.location.protocol ? ‘https://’ : ‘http://’) +

How to Create a Smart List in Analytics

Once logged into Google Analytics:

1. Click the Admin tab

2. Under the Property column click on the “Remarketing” button, then select “Lists”.

Google Analytics Remarking Lists

3. Create a “New Remarketing List”

Google Analytics New Remarketing List

4. Select your list type as “Smart List”

Google Remarketing Smart List

5. Give your Smart List a name

6. Select your AdWords account

Google Analytics Product Account

7. Save your audience

Finally, create a new display campaign in Google AdWords and select your new Smart List as the targeting set. Google Remarketing Lists

You are now are advertising to a very fine-tuned audience who has a high likelihood of converting.

Google Announces New AdWords Ad Types & Management Tools

Posted by on Apr 22, 2014 in News | 2 Comments
Google Announces New AdWords Ad Types & Management Tools

Today at the AdWords Performance Forum, Jerry Dischler, the VP of Product Management for AdWords at Google, presented a slew of new AdWords features that are scheduled to roll out over the next few months including new mobile app ad types, improved tracking, and a suite of new tools to manage and optimize campaigns. Here’s a roundup:

Mobile App Ads

Perhaps playing catchup with Facebook’s successful mobile app ads, Google is beefing up their own mobile app ads to help developers promote discovery of and re-engagement with their apps across Google search, the Google Display Network, and YouTube.

adwords mobile app install ads

Driving Installs

To address the fact that 60% of apps are never installed (according to Google), AdWords advertisers can now use AdMob for advanced targeting of people who are most likely to be customers by looking at which apps they use, how frequently they use apps, and what types of in-app purchases they make.

adwords youtube mobile app install ads

AdWords is also adding a TrueView companion ad type for promoting app installs with YouTube preroll ads.

Driving Engagement

adwords mobile app engagement ads hulu

And to address the fact that 80% of apps are only used once (according to Digital Trends), AdWords is also introducing re-engagement ads for search and display. These ads are incredibly useful for driving increased engagement from users that already have your app installed by deep linking them into different sections of your app.

adwords mobile app engagment adHotelTonight, the poster child of Facebook’s re-engagement ads, is used as the example here. Users with the HotelTonight app installed can now see AdWords ads that encourage them to open up the app to book a room, rather than be told to install it.

Estimated Total Conversions


While there weren’t any new feature announcements for Estimated Total Conversions, Google’s cross-device conversion tracking tool, Google did report positive results from initial tests and confirmed it will continue to invest in the product.

Estimated Total Conversions promise to more accurately attribute conversions across devices, which have been historically underreported. Google reported a 7% increase in cross-device conversions and a 32% increase in conversions initiated via mobile and completed on another device.

New Enterprise-class Tools

The most exciting announcements were of new “enterprise-class tools” designed to help advertisers manage their campaigns.

Bulk Actions

adwords bulk actions

Google’s making bulk cross-campaign changes easier by including more bulk actions. The full details are still a bit fuzzy, but if you’ve ever had to make sweeping changes across your campaign to reflect a new promotion or change in messaging, you’ll be glad to know it will be easier to do this in the online interface than ever before.

Automated Bidding

Automated bidding is growing beyond conversion optimizer and budget optimizer to include the ability maximize the number of conversions, or the total value of conversions.

adwords automated bidding

Max Conversions – You can set you campaigns to use automated bidding that maximizes conversions (e.g., a car company can automate bids to drive as many users as possible to the build-a-car page on their website.)

Max Revenue – You can set you campaigns to use automated bidding that maximizes revenue (e.g., an e-commerce website can automate bids to generate more high-value orders on their website.)

Enhanced Reporting


This was my favorite part of the announcement. Director of Product Management for the AdWords front end (and my former manager), Paul Feng, showed a video of some of the steps we have to go through to prepare an AdWords csv for analysis in Excel:

  • Create the report in AdWords.
  • Download the csv.
  • Strip the header.
  • Create a pivot table.
  • Format the pivot table.
  • Manipulate the data.
  • Then, re-download the report with data from different entities and repeat…

building an adwords enhanced reports

Enhanced Reporting replaces the offline pivot table process, with a multi-dimensional data tool. These drag and drop reports use live data, so you can change the metric (campaign, ad group, etc.) easily and get real-time results.

adwords enhanced reports

This reminds me a lot of custom reports in Google Analytics, but with live previews– which is a huge compliment.


In addition to tables, Enhanced Reporting includes line graphs, pie charts, and bar charts to visualize the data.

While this is a respectable attempt to kill the pivot table, advertisers will still need to merge their reports across other channels like Bing, Facebook, and LinkedIn Ads with Excel or use a third party tool like AdStage to automatically create cross-channel reports. Learn about AdStage reporting here.

Drafts & Experiments

The last feature Google revealed was Drafts & Experiments which seems to be a much-needed overhaul of AdWords Campaign Experiments (ACE).

building an adwords draft

Now if you have a hypothesis to test, you can add your changes to a draft mode for review (what the AdWords product management team thinks of as a “shopping cart” of sorts). Once you’re happy with the proposed changes, you can run it as an experiment with a percentage of your audience.

adwords draft campaign results

As the data comes in, you can see the change in performance for the two variations side-by-side. If they changes are beneficial, you can apply your changes. If not, you can reject your hypothesis and revert your changes easily!

What do you think of these announcements? Is there a particular feature you’re excited about?

How to Use Ad Groups to Serve Relevant Ads

Posted by on Dec 13, 2013 in How-Tos | 6 Comments
How to Use Ad Groups to Serve Relevant Ads

Are you trying to wrap your head around ad groups to figure out to use them? This post will help you understand how ad groups work and provide you with winning strategies to use ad groups to build highly relevant and effective ads.

What are ad groups

Ad groups are containers that hold a set of ads and the keywords (or other methods of targeting) that trigger those ads. They also contain a default bid for keywords in the ad group along with keyword-level bids, if specified.

Since ad groups live in larger campaigns, they inherit the settings and ad extensions from the campaign they’re housed in, though you can also apply unique settings and extensions to the ad group.

How to use ad groups

Here are a couple of scenarios to show how you should use ad groups to organize your ads around a common theme:

For single-product campaigns

If you have one main product you want to advertise, you could create an ad group for each search intent. This way you can write different ads for each intent and send clicks on those ads directly to the page of your website with the most relevant information.

example of a relevant single product ad

This ad is very relevant for searches on “payroll software prices.”

For example, a payroll software startup could create an ad group for 1) payroll software, 2) alternatives to quickbooks, 3 ) prices 4) etc.

The ad group for prices would then contain keywords like 1) payroll software prices, 2) how much is payroll software, 3) cheap payroll software, 4) etc. along with ads that promote your product to a potential customer that’s concerned about pricing.

For multi-product campaigns

If you have many products or services you want to advertise, you could create an ad group for each product. This way you can write different ads for each product and send clicks on those ads directly to that product’s page on your website.

example of a relevant multi-product ad

This ad is very relevant for searches on “leaky pipes.”

For example, a plumber may create ad groups for 1) pipes, 2) water heaters 3) septic systems, 4) etc.

The ad group for pipes would then contain keywords like 1) burst pipes, 2) leaky pipes, 3) pipe repair, 4) etc. along with ads that speak directly to the problem of leaky pipes.

Relevance is key

The main thing is to use ad groups to serve the most relevant ad to each potential customer. If your “Pipes” ad group is showing ads about leaky pipes to a customer that is searching for “copper repiping,” you’ll want to create another ad group about repiping so you can show them the best ads.

The main thing is to use ad groups to serve the most relevant ad to each potential customer.

Don’t have a lot of time? Not sure where to start? Focus on your high-margin and high-volume products and services. Then, expand your ad groups from there.