Evolution of PPC
In 2002 Paid search was comparatively cave man like – we only had text ads, you could bid on Google with hardly any competition, there were very simple account/campaign structures (mostly Brand vs. Generic) and the priority was traffic to the site, therefore the person with the most cash got the top position.
But times have changed now – we have a plethora of ad types (Expanded Text Ads, Responsive text Ads, Shopping Ads, Dynamic Ads and let’s not get started on the ad extensions). There is so much more competition in pretty much any advertising space you find yourself in. Structures are becoming more granular – as granular as a website is especially as we get more sophisticated with match type strategy. And gone are the days you report only on traffic – the director wants to know their return on investment (ROI) or cost per lead. And let’s not even get to all the different factors that Google now considers to find you worthy of that coveted 1st position (the known AND the un-disclosed). Thanks Google.
To ensure we're on top of being the best at every single one of these we need solutions of several kinds: bidding, campaign management, ad testing, reporting, competitive analysis & attribution. Companies have developed different tools and software that provides you with one or more of these solutions. But did you know there is one tool that opens up all these solutions to you?
This can be done for bidding, campaign management, ad testing, reporting, competitive analysis, attribution AND more.
But where do you start from, you may ask? Let’s say you have been brought-on to manage an account, here are my recommended 5 scripts to easily start off with, that will give you a clear understanding of the level of quality on the account you are dealing with, whilst maintaining your focus on the right metrics so that you ensure your changes are making the right impact (click on each title to get each full script).
1st Script - Quality score tracker
By simply copying all the code in this link, putting it in a new Google Ads IDE and setting the schedule (which I’d advice to be once a day) – you get a solution that continually measure and keeps track of your quality score. The first report will not be much to look at and it’ll look like this.
But once we get started, passing to weeks and months – you then are able to view the effects of optimisation on quality score.
The yellow bar will always remain as the first day measurement the quality score report was run – and the blue bar is the previous day’s results. So for those 1,2,3 QS, we want to see lower blue bars, and for your 6,7,8,9,10 we want those blue bars to be higher. 😊
The second graph takes a look at the impression weighted QS performance. Because those keywords that have a QS of 10 but only generates one or two impressions isn’t really doing anything for your account.
In the settings of the script you can easily decide on what other graphs that you may like to see – by either changing the values below from 0 to 1 – you can see Average QS, Impression per QS or more.
2nd Script - Pausing Ad Groups that have no live keywords
When you start on an account that has a very granular structure you may pull an ad groups level report – and start panicking as to why some ad groups just aren’t generating any impressions. Just to open them and realise there are no live keywords in those ad groups to begin with.
Well it would be nice for someone to have paused those ad group eh? Well, let’s be honest, we've done those mass keywords optimisations and not realised we're leaving some ad group live – where all the keywords in there just needed to be stopped! Well if you are taking over an account which is looking like that – this script is for you. Again – a simple copy and paste into the Google Ads IDE and well, no schedule is really needed for this. Just remember to run it when you become the keyword bulldozer. 😊
3rd Script - Pausing Ad Groups that have no live ad copy
Similar to the issue above – ad group analysis, ad groups have no data – look into them and that whole no live ad copy running. Who ran that test, paused all non-performers and forgot to set the control back live huuh???
Well as before, copy and paste this script and bingo-bango all those non ads ad groups get paused till you decide the best control ad copy to put in them.
4th Script – Competitive Analysis
As we know – something that a lot of clients have issues with, are those pesky unexpected spikes in CPCs. Want to see a nice simple quick analysis that allows you to only focus on certain competitors - not every single person that has decided to spend ££ on the keywords you are bidding on? Well take a look here. With this one – you don’t even need to worry about a code. The lovely guys at Brainlabs Digital have created this template [that you need to make a copy of]. Once you pull in your auction insights report (segmented according to the desired timeline) your list of competitors shows in a list in your Settings Tab:
From this front-sheet you can then decide on different settings – for instance which competitors to focus on in the report, which metrics should show in the tables/graphs, whether to see data by device (ensure you pull in that report for it) and much more. To see the CPC correlation, make sure you pull in the account/campaign level traffic report, so this nifty script shows how your CPC has been affected with each competitors change in impression share and position above rate, etc..
5th Script – Monthly budget cut off
Once you takeover an account a major thing a client looks at is – how well are you managing their budget. In those first weeks of working on the account there may be some tests that have been talked about they you want to try. That might get the account budget to temporarily do some unexpected things. That’s all okay – as long as you do NOT over-spend the monthly budget. You may even have booked a holiday around the end of month but want to ensure the campaigns do NOT spend a penny above the allocated budget.
Well, this is the script for you then. Going back to our easy copy and pasting into the Google Ads IDE method – just set the cut off monthly budget, and list the campaigns that should be included in the check so that, with an hourly check – once the total cost of all your listed campaign has reached the "monthlyBudget" limit you set – your script bulk pauses your listed campaigns.
Now of course there are many other scripts out there to really get you doing funky stuff with your data – but if nothing else these scripts will give you the confidence to know how easy it is to implement scripts to make those manual processes a lot faster as well as ensuring some important checks are being consistently done even whilst you are on a beach somewhere sipping cocktails. 😉