How to Boost ROI with New AdWords Cross-Device Attribution Reports
Over the past decade, the rise of mobile usage has made it extremely difficult to track customers as they switch from one device to another. Even more challenging for today’s digital marketer is analyzing which channels are producing the highest results and how to attribute value to each of the channels a user passed through before converting. New AdWords Cross-Device Attribution Reports
In an effort to help advertisers measure a consumer’s path to conversion, Google recently released new AdWords cross-device attribution reports. On average, consumers own anywhere from two to five devices, including their mobile phone, desktop, and possible tablet or television. A recent study from March 2016, conducted by Google and Ipsos Connect, showed that 60% of consumers start the purchase process on device and complete it on another. The path to conversion is more complex than ever and anything but linear.
In the past, the traditional marketing funnel was simple and clear: awareness, consideration, purchase. However, with the rapid adoption of mobile tablets and devices, it’s becoming increasingly difficult for marketers and advertisers to measure the impact of their online advertising campaigns. It’s not as simple as a user search, user click, and a user conversion on the same device. The AdWords cross-device attribution reports use device conversion data that now shows device influence throughout conversion paths.
The three AdWords cross-device attribution reports that are now available include:
- Devices: showing the cross-device activity happening in your AdWords account
- Assisting Devices: showing what device types assisted conversions on other devices
- Device Paths: showing the top conversion paths for customers using more than one device to convert
Each of these reports can be found in AdWords in the Tools tab under Attribution as shown in the below screenshot:
For savvy advertisers that are obsessive about measurement, these benchmarks come in handy in a few different ways:
Using Different Attribution Models Other Than Last Click
There are 7 main attribution models that you can use for conversion tracking:
- Last Click Attribution Model
- First Click Attribution Model
- Linear Attribution Model
- Time Decay Attribution Model
- Position-Based Attribution Model
- Last Non-Direct Attribution Model
- Custom or Algorithmic Attribution Model
With the new AdWords Devices Report, you’re able to quickly identify how customers use different devices on their conversion path and better serve particular ads to your audience based on the cross-device activity.
If you notice a conversion trend across different devices, you may want to use adjust your attribution model to boost a exposure for an ad that was displayed on a mobile, but converted on a tablet.
When choosing a new attribution model be sure to account for cross-device behavior because, unlike the traditional last click attribution model, credit will be assigned across the conversion path.
Quick Note: AdWords Device Report only includes conversions that had multiple device touch points.
Updating Your Bid Adjustments for Different Devices
The new Assisting Devices report shows the number of last click conversions and click-assisted conversions broken down by each type of device. With the new Assist Ratio metrics, you can see how many conversions were assisted by impressions or clicks on that particular device compared to the number of actual conversions.
Let’s say your Mobile Assist Ratio for a campaign is 2.20, this means for every conversion that is reported from a mobile device, 2.20 conversions on other devices were assisted by mobile impressions or clicks.
This information can help inform your mobile bid adjustment strategy. Going with the same example, if you notice mobile is assisting conversions on other devices by 2.2x, and your tablet assist ratio is only assisting conversions on other devices by 0.25x, you may want to lower your tablet bid adjustments and increase your mobile bid adjustments to maximize value from your mobile ad impressions.
Optimizing Your mobile Strategy
Let’s say you’re analyzing the top conversion path and discover mobile is driving more assists than actual conversions. If that’s the case, you can optimize your mobile campaign strategy to be more educational rather than transactional. Your ad can highlight copy such as ‘Learn More’, as opposed to ‘Buy Now’ or ‘Sign Up Now’. Additionally, the mobile landing page can be optimized to show the most important benefits of your product at the top, rather than the call-to-action of sign up now. For B2B companies, this may occur quite often, as your prospects may hear about your products or services at a conference, conduct a mobile search while they’re on the go, and convert later when they are back in their office on their laptop.
As with any attribution reporting, it’s important to consider how you want to measure conversions and apply credit to each device and ad channel. You can use the Google Analytics Model Comparison Tool to compare the results of up to three different types of attribution models to ensure that the attribution model you’re using reflects your advertising goals and business models.
How to improve your campaigns with Google’s new AdWords device bidding feature
Learn how the new AdWords device bidding tools can help you improve your conversion rate across different devices.
1. Make a base bid
Set a base bid and bid adjustments of -100 percent to +900 percent on one or more devices. You won’t have to make the same bid for multiple devices, which means you’ll have more flexibility over how you target your ads.
2. Launch separate campaigns
Customise your bids to the devices that your customers use the most. For example, if your market spends more time browsing products and services from a tablet device than a desktop or mobile, a tablet-optimised bid campaign will enable you to tap into this market and become more competitive. While a tablet-optimised or mobile-optimised campaign can help increase your ROI from those specific devices, it’s still important to make sure you have separate campaigns that effectively target all of your customers, whatever the device they use to find your products and services.
3. Identify weaknesses in your current campaign
By separating your campaigns to different devices, you’ll be able to identify any weaknesses. Were you expecting more customers to be visiting your website from a desktop? Is your mobile and tablet performance below your competitors? Whatever is working in your current campaign, integrate it into your new campaigns. Make sure you have a high Quality Score, as this will mean your campaigns have been Google-approved and will likely achieve higher rankings within the search results. A good PPC manager will be able to optmise your campaign to acheive these goals.
4. Enjoy greater control of your campaigns
When Google announced its Enhanced Campaigns a few years ago, it restricted the extent to which advertisers could customise their bids, because all desktop and tablet ads had to be grouped. So, for example, if your customers were more likely to find your products and services via a tablet than a desktop, you would have been disadvantaged. That’s because you wouldn’t have been able to optimise your ads to the device that your audience were most likely to use. This is how you create a responsive website – using HTML and CSS to ensure your content is correctly formatted for different devices. Fortunately, with tablet-optimised bidding you’ll be able to bid to an audience that is more likely to use this device. According to Laura Collins, the PPC Team Leader of the UK media agency and Merkle company Periscopix, it is estimated that tablets are more likely to be used for watching television and other entertainment, rather than work
5. Make the most of mobile
People spend more time browsing products and services online via their mobile than any other devices. That’s according to research from Google in 2015, which revealed that in the U.S, Japan and eight other countries, more Google searches were made via a mobile device than a computer. Google did not reveal the name of the other countries at the time, although it would be unsurprising if this included countries with the highest level of smartphone penetration, such as Australia, the U.K and Spain.
Want to learn more about AdWords bid adjustments? Check out their best practices here.
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What You Need to Know About AdWords Expanded Text Ads
Google announced a big change to AdWords back in May and in July the official rollout felt like Christmas came early. For years, every digital advertiser lived by the 25-35-35 character mantra and agonized over fitting brand message into those stringent limits when launching AdWords ad campaigns. The next generation of advertisers will eat, sleep, and breathe the 30-30-80 character rule.
One month after Google’s the expanded text ads announcement we’re looking at what these major changes mean, how to get the most bang for your buck, and what advertisers need to know to migrate from standard text ads to expanded text ads. As of October 26, 2016 advertisers will no longer be able to create or upload standard text ads.
[Update: September 13, 2016] Google announced the expanded text ad format deadline has been moved back. Advertisers now have until January 31, 2017 to make the transition to expanded text ads (instead of the original date of October 26, 2016).
Here’s what you need to avoid costly AdWords campaign mistakes and how to leverage this new ad format.
What are Expanded Text Ads (ETAs)?
Expanded text ads offer 47% more space for your ad copy with two 30 character headlines and an 80 character description. Like Standard text ads, ETAs are available on the Google Search Network and Google Display Network. Both automatic and manual ad extensions are fully compatible with the expanded text ad format.
Google designed ETAs to accommodate the seismic shift in how consumers are now interacting with brands across multiple devices. ETAs will display across desktop and mobile devices AND automatically adjust the format according to the user’s screen size.
Out of the trillions of searches happening on Google, over half of those searches are happening on mobile. And, looking at data from millions of websites using Google Analytics today, more than half of all web traffic is from smartphones and tablets.
Advertisers can now better engage their audience by delivering a mobile-first experience to potential buyers in their preferred context.
What will Change from Standard Text Ads to Expanded Text Ads?
How to Transition to Expanded Text Ads
- Make sure you have AdWords Editor version 11.5 or later. If you don’t, don’t worry! You can download it free here.
- Launch AdWords Editor, select ‘Ads and Extensions’ tab on the left table.
- Select all the text featured on the main screen and paste into a spreadsheet.
The most important fields are: Campaign, Ad Group, Keyword, Headline, Description Line 1, Description Line 2, and Device Preference
- To update your existing standard text ads to the ETA format, you’ll need to create your new columns. So you can easily see copy changes, put the new columns to the right of their respective previous column.
- Insert the =length( function to make sure you don’t go over the character limit for each column.
New Headline 1 = 30 characters; New Headline 2 = 30 characters; New Description = 80 characters.
- Now that you have your spreadsheet is setup, you can quickly rewrite your old text ads and transition those into Google’s new expanded text ads format.
Wrapping Up: A Few Best Practices to Keep In Mind
Spend Time on Your Headlines
Headlines are more important than ever. With the extra headline field, use that space to focus on deeper messaging that resonates with your intended audience. While longer headlines increase the clickable space of your ad, your first headline still remains the most important real estate space. Some advertisers have noticed the second headline truncated when viewed on desktop. Be sure to include the most important message (and keywords) in the first headline.
Keywords Still Matter, So Use the Path Fields to Match Intent
The ETA format now automatically pulls the domain from your Final URL as your display URL with the option to include two 15 character path fields as an appendage to the display URL. Use these two fields to indicate to your searchers where they can expect to see after the click. More importantly, use this space to include top performing keywords to improve relevance and improve your ad’s overall quality score.
Take this Opportunity to Audit Every Aspect of Your Text Ads
Review how your ad, as a complete entity, supports your client’s message. Analyze your historical data and try to come up with new tests to run with your ETAs. This means assessing everything from the ad creative to ad extensions like callouts, reviews, snippets, and more to strategically optimize your ads.
Have you been testing out the new Extended Text Ad formats? Let me know if you’ve found any tips to share in the comment section below ☟.
Learn the “PPC Rules You Must Use” from Stephanie White of Hanapin Marketing
Managing ad campaigns can be pretty tedious, especially when your time is spent making the same campaign changes on a daily, weekly, and monthly basis. Luckily, Google and Bing offer a way to automate your tedious campaign tasks using rules to automatically make optimizations for you.
In this week’s #PPCPodcast, we chatted with Stephanie White, Account Manager at Hanapin Marketing, about automating ppc account management. Before White was PPC master at Hanapin Marketing, she was an entrepreneur starting her own jewelry business back in 1999. In 2004, instead of hiring a marketing specialist, White took it upon herself to learn profitable online marketing. These self-taught skills, ranging from web design to email marketing to PPC advertising, led her down a fruitful career working with talented marketers from ReachLocal, John Eagle Dealerships, and now Hanapin Marketing.
Check out White’s 5 must-have AdWords Automated Rules for every PPC account. Learn how she uses Automated Rules to save time, money, and sanity.
What the Heck are Automated Rules?
Automated Rules are a series of actions you can choose to automatically perform across your ppc campaigns. To run these Automated Rules, you’ll need to define what conditions must be met for the rule to fire and apply these automatic changes to your account. Use rules to make changes to your ad statuses, budgets, bids, keywords and more. PPC managers are under a lot of pressure to deliver results…quickly: with clients’ increasing demand for deeper campaign performance analysis and insights combined with growing paid search and social platforms. The ability to automatically perform routine tasks, means you spend less time manually monitoring each campaign’s metrics and more time focusing on ppc strategy and optimizing growth opportunities.
The 5 Must-Have Automated Rules for Every PPC Account
Increase or Decrease Budget on Specific Date/Time
Use this rule if you either have additional budget you need to spend by a particular date OR if you want to automate increases or decreases to your budget on the first of the month.
Schedule Promotions to Run During a Set Time Period
Create an automated rule to adjust CPC bids for a particular ad group. This will come in handy when you build promotional campaigns for the holiday season. In your ad group you want to include keyword combinations for your product and any holiday terms. For example: Black Friday car deals, New Years car sales, Happy Honda Days, Christmas car deals, etc. Use a rule to automatically enable this ad group 2 weeks before the sale and end 1 week after.
For B2B clients: Be wary of the times you choose to schedule your ad campaigns
- B2Bs should schedule campaigns to run only during business hours. But if there is a weekend event your target audience will be attending, schedule your ad campaigns to run during the event’s timeframe.
- If you need to spend budget quickly, consider creating a rule to increase budget and schedule your campaign to run constantly for a short burst of time. Analyze the data and see what happens
Reduce Bids for Keywords with a High Cost Per Acquisition (CPA)
Save time manually adjusting bids with a rule that will automatically reduce bids for keywords with extremely high CPA, but have zero conversions.
Increase Bids for Converting Keywords Below First-Page Bids
This is a great rule to have in your time-saver toolbox. Let’s say you have a keyword with high conversions, but just dropped below first-page bid. You can create a rule to automatically apply a 10% bid increase to all keywords that have over 10 conversions with more than 50 impressions and quality score greater than 5.
Set Up Email Alerts for Drastic Changes in Your Campaigns
Avoid ppc account surprises with performance-based email alerts that fire based on your most valuable KPIs. Set up an email alert to notify you of any drastic changes to your account, campaigns, ad groups, ads, or keywords.
Hopefully you’re now able to set up, test, and iterate on these automated rules to save you time and money. These rules are intended to make your ppc life easier because you won’t have to spend so much time doing the manual ppc account tasks, your time can be better spent thinking about your overarching ppc account strategy and how to optimize campaign performance.