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Google AdWords Announcement – Enhanced Campaigns

Written by Tom | 08-Feb-2013 16:57:00

Google announced a significant update to the AdWords product late Wednesday evening in the UK.

This product update is designed to accommodate the shifting search consumption patterns. An increasing number of touch points and devices are being used in making purchasing decisions and the aim of this update is to make it easier for marketers to deliver the right message, to the right people, at the right time and on the right device.

Enhanced Campaigns – The Key Changes

  1. A single campaign will be used to target all devices
  2. Desktop = Tablet in terms of bidding strategy
  3. Mobile bids will be set at campaign level, away from Desktop/Tablet base
  4. Improved ad extension functionality
  5. Cross device assisted conversion reporting

Our initial view

  1. Having a single campaign will significantly reduce account creation time. We have meticulously split out AdWords campaigns, by device, for our clients which has meant we already understand how different search behavior and performance is across devices. We are therefore very well placed for this update.
  2. Google's view is that functionality on desktops and tablets has merged. Whilst this is true in many respects and users expect the same browsing experience on both we know from working with our client's data that there are differences including time of day peak consumption and where tablets Vs desktops sit within the purchasing funnel.
  3. There is no doubt having a separate mobile strategy is crucial to winning the moments that matter. Especially in light of the shift in search traffic towards Smartphone devices. A single campaign means a single landing page URL. This change has put the onus on clients to put a server side redirect in place to detect what device someone is searching on. We have the experience to help guide clients through the potential necessary migration.
  4. The improved and long overdue adscheduling of ad extensions will make using them intelligently far simpler. Ensuring click-to-call extensions are only live during hours when a call centre is able to service those calls will be done with the click of a button. We will also be able to provide individual sitelink level reporting without a work around through GA as well as the ability to serve sitelinks at adgroup level to compliment our granular accounts structures. This update really excites our PPC specialists.
  5. This is the most exciting element and the main reason why any short term pain will be worth it. Further understanding of how these devices play different roles in decision making processes will help us continue to meet and surpass our clients KPIs and search marketing objectives.

These changes are being met with a mixture of emotions throughout the search industry – some are suggesting it is a step backwards whilst others hail the changes as a refreshing update to an ageing system. We will hold our judgement until we see how the new campaigns work and we will also wait to see what exciting new features will arrive as a result of enhanced campaigns from Google's ever rolling road map!