2019 Google Ads Updates You Should be Taking Advantage of
2019 is here, and guess what? Google’s still changing. More and more updates continue to roll in and there’s more and more to process if you're searching for ways to improve your AdWords (now known as Google Ads) performance. But what to focus on? Reviewing the list of announcements and updates can be daunting. Never fear, Bonsai is here to break down the updates you need to be taking advantage of.
Make Sure You Understand those Four New Search Ad Position Metrics
Anyone who works with Google Ads won’t be surprised to hear about the new metrics and analytics they’re rolling out. Google is constantly providing new data points to help advertisers better benchmark their efforts.
In the realm of Google Ads, you live and die by SERPs. So it’s crucial to understand where your ads appear on the page and how the position correlates to overall campaign performance. Now you can, thanks to these four new metrics:
- Impr. (Absolute Top) % - the percent of your ad impressions that are shown as the very first ad above the organic search results.
- Impr. (Top) % - the percent of your ad impressions that are shown anywhere above the organic search results.
- Search (Absolute Top) IS - the impressions you’ve received in the absolute top location (the very first ad above the organic search results) divided by the estimated number of impressions you were eligible to receive in the top location.
- Search (Top) IS - the impressions you’ve received in the top location (anywhere above the organic search results) compared to the estimated number of impressions you were eligible to receive in the top location.
Up until now, most folks have been relying on the average position metric which, while useful, only shows your position within the ad auction, not on the actual page - hence the value of these new data points.
Pay Per Conversion in Display Campaigns
Starting just last month, you can now choose to pay for conversions, as opposed to clicks, in display campaigns. When we say pay per conversion, we mean what we say - you only pay when a user converts on your app or site.
Other digital ad platforms, namely Facebook, offer bidding strategies and optimization tools built around specific business goals, like clicks, conversions, registrations, etc. BUT, as you likely already know, all Facebook ad campaigns are built on a cost-per-impression model. This means you always pay based on the numbers of views your ad gets; if you choose to bid or optimize ads for conversions, your cost per conversion is actually just the amount you spend per impression x the number of impressions it took to achieve a conversion - not the clearest way of explaining ad spend.
This new Google Ads feature for display campaigns is the real deal, however, promising that you’ll never pay more than your target cost per action. So, if you’re CPA is $5, and you drive 10 conversions, you’ll pay $50. Doesn’t get any clearer than that!
Target Impression Share Bidding
If you’re already familiar with Google Ads and you use it in a professional setting, you know about Google’s rash of “smart bidding” strategies - the automated bidding tactics that always aim for conversion or conversion value. Impression share is the latest such strategy that has been getting a lot of attention; as it’s a valuable metric for assessing one’s overall strategy - everything from bids, quality scores, approval status, and targeting.
As a quick refresher - Impression share is the number of impressions you garnered divided by the estimated number of impressions you could have gotten, which is a direct indication of your ads competitiveness with respect to those bidding on your query. For example, if your ad has 100% impression share, it means your winning the auction every time.
Target impression share bidding automatically adjusts your bid to hit the percentage you aim for either on the absolute top of the page, the top of the page, or anywhere on the page, which when used provides another way of measuring the competitiveness of a particular query! More and more way of slicing and dicing the data to get the absolute best bang for your buck.
Responsive Search Ads
Is it 2016? Because I’m getting major deja vu vibes taking me back to expanded search ads and the wave of hullabaloo they caused when they were rolled out around 2.5 years ago. When it comes to new ad formats, us digital marketers are always keen to exaggerate. Why? Because it’s an opportunity, and in the world where data is king, anything you can do tip the numbers must be taken seriously and yes HYPED up.
In all seriousness, responsive search ads have the makings of a serious game changer - they’re Google’s newest, biggest, most flexible search ad format ever - giving you the option of writing up to 15 headlines and 4 descriptions and letting Google test all the possible combinations, which amounts to over 40,000.
If you’re a smaller business with just a few products or offerings and you don’t have a massive budget to work with, it might take you a long time to gain any valuable insights from a responsive ad, especially if you have already identified the FaBs (features and benefits) that are working for you. On the other hand, enterprise-level organizations that are advertising many different offerings across audiences definitely stand to benefit from this robust new format.
AdWords is constantly shifting, offering new and better means of optimizing your campaigns and understanding your results. These four new updates represent the push towards smart bidding strategies, which rely on machine learning and further automation to help advertisers work smarter not harder.
Are you taking advantage of these 2019 Google Ads updates? If you’re running your own business, you probably don’t have time to keep track of all the latest and greatest digital marketing tactics, which is where Bonsai comes in. Bonsai lives and breathes digital marketing and we’re constantly steeped in the latest trends and strategies.
If you're looking for dedicated Google Ads expertise, contact Bonsai Media Group today.