Google Adwords gives you different ways to bid for your ads depending on the organisation’s objectives. Depending on what you are campaigning for, keyword bidding could focus on some different things including conversions, clicks, impressions or views. It determines your ad position in the Search Engine Result Page (SERP).
Once an individual runs a Google search, an auction is conducted by the system. The Adwords advertising system runs billions of sales daily which decides which ad to show and in which order they appear. Having in mind what you want to get with your ads, you have to make the right bidding decisions as that would mean the success or failure of your campaign (ROI).
While advertisers could take many approaches for keyword bidding, bid optimisation is always what they are aiming. Automated bidding is the best option as it efficiently generates the most returns and assures a high number of clicks, but of course, excellent results come at an equally high cost. With the limited budgets that advertisers have to work with, most of them opt for do-it-yourself option. This format also eliminates the risks involved when they pay for ineffective advertising. Losses are no option. They want results, and that is what they pay. It is not entirely impossible to successfully work with the manual bidding. In fact, all you need to do is create a strategy and work wisely.
Understanding Manual Bidding
With manual bidding, you get to set your bids in such a way that you get the precise result that you are looking for. It gives you full control of your requests.
Approaches to manual bidding:
There are three standard approaches that advertisers take when setting their bids. These criteria include:
- Comparing the performance of the attempts over time
Some people decide to review the individual performance of their bids over a specified duration of time. Could be daily, weekly, or monthly. Depending on the changes, they make what they consider the best changes on the bids.
- Inspecting keyword positions
Some advertisers choose to investigate the areas for their keywords and make the necessary adjustments. For those that might be showing too low, they bid them up.
- Analysing the ROAS (Return on Ad Spend)
This process is the approach taken by those in the know. What they do, they adjust their keywords based on their ROAS. Based on the comparison between CPA (Cost per Action) and the account average, they either bid up or bid down the keyword.
Take on the three approaches. A wise publisher would remain vigilant when it comes to a position of their keywords. While incorporating the three criteria, they then come up with the best course of action.
When to wait
Account managers often feel the need to do something. However though, if the account is making a large amount of conversions, what then would you be looking for by changing the bids? This way you get the time to WAIT.
As it may seem a great idea to tweak those bids on a daily basis, sometimes it is safer to wait and observe. Depending on records, you get to decide which keywords to bid up, bid down, or keep the position. The cost and budget also play an important role as you edit your bids. You do not want to exhaust your budget without achieving a Return on Investment! If no returns are gained, what is the point of carrying on the campaign?
What Causes Unprofessional Bidding?
- Insufficient information
As you may have realised already, a single conversion or a click on your ad does not call for any conclusions. It is not enough.
- Mixing up your changes
People who are inclined to real-time bidding are subject to this. Without even realising it, you may end up bidding twice on the same keyword or countering the previous changes you made. We are human after all, right?
How do you solve this?
Give yourself space and time
Accumulate enough data to justify any actions you might be itching to take. You can get this information by:
• Associating the chosen keyword with other keywords, in the same keyword space.
• Associating the selected keyword with different keywords.
Remember, if your data is not enough, keep off from making any irrational decisions.
Changing your bids
Does it raise the question: How often should you be changing your submissions?
The lower the changes, the better. If possible, make your bidding changes once a month or much less frequently. With an extensive space between your biddings, you can garner more substantial information and consequently, better judgement.
The number of clicks and conversions generated determines the frequency of changing your bids.
The Ground Rules in Adjusting Your Bids
1. E-commerce B2C (Business to consumer)
If your products have a low Average Selling Price (ASP) plus high conversion volume, you could change the bids weekly or monthly while if the ASP is top, go for a minimum of monthly.
2. E-commerce B2B (Business to business)
For these markets, do your bidding on a quarterly basis (every four months).
An official red flag for action is when the market is very aggressive or when an impactful competitor beats you in the game.
Bottom-line, keep track of the keyword positions. This process will tell you when to take action or just keep off.
As you wait, there are other beneficial things to do such as:
• Analyse your account in-depth.
• Apply higher optimisation techniques.
• Work on the landing pages.
• Add negatives keywords to your campaigns.
• Strengthen your ads.
Think through your actions before you take them. Justify them. Good judgment comes with excellent results.