Marketing   |   April 4, 2019

4 Game-Changing Paid Search Tips for 2019

A 4 minute read by Evan Ilgenfritz, SEM Specialist

The Google Ads platform is really hitting its stride in 2019 — continuing to be the top paid search platform for digital marketing. The platform's functionality has been streamlined, and there are now a lot more possibilities in the realm of paid search.

Want to see if you're using Google Ads to the fullest? Here are a few new tips.   

1. Promotion Extensions

This is another new feature in Google Ads.  It's been well documented that an organized and comprehensive set of ad extensions can greatly increase your ad performance.  More relevant information and real estate on the page allow users to more quickly connect with your ad.

The new Promotion Extensions do exactly what you would expect — they call out relevant promotional language in a clearly visible format. Wordstream found that Promotion Extensions had a roughly 10% CTR for their clients, while standard ads averaged around 5% CTR. 

Promotions are a great way to improve performance for your brand, and a convincing deal often convinces a user to click your ad instead of a competitor's. Give the new Promotion Extension a try to see how you can improve your sales during a promotion. 

2. Google Ads Editor: Manage Across Accounts

This is brand new and a HUGE help for brands that manage multiple accounts. Previously, AdWords Editor only allowed you to make updates or changes to a single account. You could copy and paste items between different accounts opened in separate windows, but with greater account scale this could definitely give you a headache. 

Now you are able to manage multiple accounts in a single window, making it a breeze to share keyword lists and targeting settings across accounts.

3. Similar Audiences for Paid Search

This is a newer functionality for the Google Ads platform that allows you to more directly control and curate your user list. For example, if you have a website that sells shoes and uses different pages for hiking boots, cowboy boots, and running shoes, you can designate visitors of these pages as their own audience. Google will then find users that are “similar” to users that visited the cowboy boots page.

When using Similar Audiences in “observation mode”, traffic flow remains the same and you are simply able to see how many people that clicked your ad were considered similar to other visitors. 

When "targeting mode" is activated, your campaign will only show ads to those in your similar audience list. This allows you to broaden up your keywords to reach a wider audience, while still having the protection of only showing ads to similar users. 

4. Broad Match Modified (BMM)

This is not new functionality, but we have found that the correct usage of this match type is crucial for proper keyword targeting. BMM is simply the inclusion of “+” in front of each keyword in a string (e.g. +shoes). Each “+” requires the attached word to be present in a user’s search. So, a keyword of “+black +running +shoes” is fairly specific while still allowing for a user to add “on sale” or “store” to the end of their query.

Essentially this match type helps protect you from irrelevant search traffic while allowing you to spend less time creating keyword lists. 

Standard Broad Match, however, is generally a waste of money and resources. This match type has the lowest quality of traffic, as your keywords will match with a high rate of irrelevant searches. Your keyword of “black running shoes” can technically show an ad for a search of “blue hiking shoes”. “Shoes” in this instance is what the algorithm matched, making it clear that Standard Broad Match leaves you open to low-quality traffic. Swarm Agency still comes into contact with accounts using Standard Broad Match, often revealing low CTR and high CVR metrics. 

Unless you are intentionally trying to burn through your budget or build broad brand awareness, we recommend switching your Standard Broad Match keywords to BMM.  

We hope that these techniques will help improve your approach to Google Ads in 2019. If some of these features feel too complex, or your team is struggling to keep up performance in 2019, reach out to us for a consultation. Swarm is happy to help bring your AdWords Account up to speed.