If you’re like many advertisers, you jump at the opportunity to experiment with the latest and greatest feature available in Google AdWords. Who can blame you? Trying something new can be exciting and it just might improve your pay-per-click account. Although there can be benefits to testing new features, there are some steps that need to be taken to improve your chance of success as well.
Develop A Strategy
Before implementing a new feature in Google AdWords, you need to determine:
- Does this make sense for your business?
- Does this make sense for all campaigns in your account or only a select few?
The fact is not all AdWords features work well for all advertisers, so you’ll want to have a good understanding of what a new feature does and when it is appropriate to use before implementing.
Even if the feature seems to be a good fit, you may want to consider implementing it on only one or two campaigns rather than account wide. This is especially true for features such as Enhanced CPC and Optimize by Conversions, which allow AdWords to change your bids or alter how frequently ad copy is displayed, respectively.
It’s also a good idea to avoid adding multiple new features at once. Doing so can make it difficult or even impossible to determine exactly what caused the performance in your account to change.
Measure The Results
Google makes it easy to implement new features in your account, and at the rate new features are released, implement them often. As you add new features, it’s important to have a plan for measuring what effect they had on your account. For each new feature you add to the account, you should make a note of:
- What feature was added.
- Where in the account it was added.
- When it was added.
- How performance was before adding the feature.
You’ll need this information later in order to keep up with what new features you need to check on and whether or not they had a positive effect on the account. It certainly doesn’t hurt to check on the performance of the new feature periodically, but it’s also a good idea to define a plan for determining whether or not to continue using the feature. This can be a set duration, such as 2 weeks or 30 days, or once a certain amount of data has been accrued, such as 1,000 clicks or 50 conversions.
Most important is that you don’t set up a new feature and then not check on it at all.
Don’t Forget The Fundamentals
If you’re not getting the performance you want from pay-per-click, it’s unlikely that trying the newest AdWords feature is going to get you where you want to be. In fact, it’s common for a new feature to produce only incremental gains at best. The largest improvements in performance can almost always be achieved by improving the fundamentals in your account:
- Keyword selection and match types
- Account organization and campaign settings
- Ad copy and destination URLs
- Budget and bidding strategy