New AdWords “Opportunities To Give Google More Money” Tab
Google announced a new Tab for the AdWords interface entering beta for some U.S. English customers soon. They’re calling it the “Opportunities” tab, but in Google-speak, that means, “Ways you can give Google more money.” Let’s take a look at the available details and ideas that would truly benefit advertisers:
The beta as launched shows just two things, both intended to get you more traffic (and Google more money):
- Budget ideas like “Change budget to $20.44 to capture missed links”
- Keyword ideas: New keywords for Ad Groups
Naturally, Google never tells us to “Lower budget to $15″ or “Remove these unrelated keywords from your Ad Group”.
Later on, the Opportunities tab will show more of the features from the Campaign Optimizer. It will be more useful than Campaign Optimizer, since the ideas will span your account’s campaigns and ad groups. Hopefully, there will be some degree of sorting, so we can find low hanging fruit easily.
Eventually, the Tools tab’s features will migrate into the Opportunities tab. This should include:
- Keyword tool (and the Search-based Keyword Tool)
- Conversion tracking
- Ads diagnostic tool
- Ad preview tool
- Campaign optimizer
- and a bunch more
Some of these could be more useful with the Opportunities tab’s broader view of suggestions across all campaigns and ad groups.
Features we ACTUALLY Need
Creating an AdWords account usually works best like this:
- Create ads for as many pages on our site as reasonable
- Use as many keywords as make sense for those pages
- Write multiple ads, so we’re testing ad performance
I think the Search-based Keyword Tool makes this task a lot easier than it once was, though I continue to be amazed that AdWords doesn’t give us the features I put into my “Missing Link” tool. The ability to manage bids and match types in bulk as you create a new campaign seems basic to me. Maybe someday!
Managing an AdWords account usually means:
- Finding new keywords over time
- Promoting broad matches to phrase match, phrase match to exact match (which Google’s keyword tab makes much easier now, by showing us actual search phrases that matched our keywords)
- Pausing bad ads and writing new ones
- Lowering bids as much as possible
So to perform these tasks, what I’d love the Opportunities tab to show me would be things like:
- Pause Bad Ad Text: Identify ad texts that have “lost” the copmetition against the other Active ads in a given Ad Group, and point out which ones need to be paused and replaced with a fresh ad.
- Update Match Type: Find phrase and broad match keywords that have a significant number of matching searches. So if I have “red dog collars” as a phrase match, but no exact match, and 80% of searches that show the ad are exactly [red dog collars], it’s time to “promote” the phrase. Same for broad match promoting to phrase match
- Missing Page: Using Webmaster Tools’ perspective on the site (or the Search Based Keyword Tool), point out pages on the site that don’t have ads and perhaps should.
- Missing Keyword: AdWords and Analytics are growing together more, so I’m hopeful we might get this one. Find organic keywords not in my ad groups and suggest them for AdWords. (This is like the Search-based keyword tool, but based on actual inbound traffic instead of page analysis.)
- Broken Page: Point out 404s and other broken pages on ads. This can be a real problem when the folks managing the ads aren’t the same folks who manage the rest of the web site.
- Low Quality Score: Point out outlier keywords with low quality scores that should perhaps be pruned to bring ad groups into better focus.
- Update Keyword Bid: Point out extreme average positions, either always #1 or extremely low.
- Low CTR: Point out keywords (or ad texts) with extremely low CTR but reasonable numbers of impressions. Maybe that broad match keyword that seemed like such a good idea is dragging down the rest of your campaign.
- Bouncy Keyword: Find keywords with high bounce rates (using Analytics data) and suggest we pause or update them.
Of course, many of these are things that an AdWords manager checks for frequently when managing a campaign. But the point is that Google could be doing a better job of helping ad managers, all in automated ways using data Google already has.
This approach would especially help small business advertisers, who don’t have big enough budgets to hire an AdWords pro to manage their campaigns. But Google has always been shy about the complexities of managing ads. They’d like us to think “It’s easy to get ads for your business running!” and that’s true. But getting your ads to help your own bottom line instead of Google’s requires information and tools Google isn’t providing.
This was a big reason I wrote AdWords Evolved, and continue to build tools like “Missing Link” to lower the bar for small advertisers. Managing AdWords well for your own business requires keeping an eye on the above elements, not just what Google considers “Opportunities”.