While the creation and management of paid search campaigns will always need a human element as part of the equation, there are a number of ways that some of the more repetitive tasks involved with executing a successful PPC campaign can be automated. Outlined below are a few simple ways for you to save yourself some time when it comes to PPC:

Google Scripts – A feature that may have slipped under a lot of radars is one that has the most power and potential. Google offers a platform for users to create “scripts” that can do anything from adjusting daily budgets to automating the reporting for a specific campaign. Not only that, but these scripts can be scheduled to run at specific intervals, with automation being the obvious goal in mind. That being said, the learning curve with this feature is a bit steeper, and the concept of “coding” (the scripts are JavaScript based) could be daunting to paid search analysts with no programming experience (which, let’s face it, is most of us). There are a lot of resources out there, but the most useful is a blog dedicated entirely to these AdWords scripts. For those weary of the coding, there is bound to be a script or two that has already been created to accomplish that repetitive task you’ve been dreading up until this point. All you have to do is copy and paste!

Online Dashboarding Tools – Reporting is a dreaded, but necessary, evil. Many times reporting is repetitive, with the same types of charts and graphs being used to display different time ranges of data. This is where dashboards come in. With the AdWords API now being easily accessible, a number of online tools have emerged with the sole objective of taking your data and visualizing it in a manner of your choosing. With most of these being drag and drop platforms, the learning curve is almost non-existent. Once built, most of these dashboards have live connections to your AdWords account, meaning live reporting whenever and wherever you need it. Provide your client a private link to your dashboard and the days of having to compile reports are over! Check out Cyfe and Klipfolio, which are just a few of the impressive dashboarding platforms out there.

Microsoft Excel – Easily the oldest tool mentioned in this blog, but definitely not one to be taken for granted. Whether it’s the use of CONCATENATE functions to help automate the build-out of keywords for that new campaign, or the always useful PivotTable function that makes analyzing complex data sets simple, the capabilities of Excel are endless. ASAP Utilities is a great add in that offers a lot of simple, yet incredibly useful tools that can be used to automate some of the more manual tasks you might be using Excel for.

While complete automation may not be achievable, hopefully these tools help to make some level of automation a reality in your paid search campaigns!