Mastering PPC: What is an MCC & Why do agencies use it?

Mastering PPC: What is an MCC & Why do agencies use it?

When it comes to selecting an agency, one question many clients are concerned with is, who “owns” the AdWords account?  Does the agency own the account? Does the client own the account? Will the client even have access to the account?

In most scenarios, if the client has an existing account, the agency will link the client account to their My Client Center or “MCC”. If the client does not have an existing AdWords account, the agency should help the client create their own AdWords account then link the Client account to the agency MCC.

By linking the client account to the agency’s MCC, the client will always “own” the account and the associated data. The client will also have the ability to grant or terminate an individual or agency’s access to the account as they desire. By linking the client account to the MCC, the client can be reassured that they will always be able to access the account’s data even if the relationship with the agency ends. Therefore, linking to an MCC also provides the client an additional level of security as they will never need to share their password with the agency and risk having multiple users accessing the account from one login.

Bing Ads,LinkedIn and Facebook also have similar interfaces to manage multiple client accounts. However, for this post, we will focus on Google’s MCC.

What is an MCC?

MCC stands for “My Client Center” which is an AdWords account type for advertisers or agencies who are managing multiple client accounts.

The Google My Client Center account, allows agencies to access multiple AdWords accounts through a single log-in. With all client accounts available through one log-in, an MCC allows agencies to easily view performance statistics across multiple accounts in one centralized location.

When you log into an MCC, there are two main tabs “Performance” and “Budget”, each allows you to view performance or budget metrics across all of the accounts that are linked to the MCC.

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Additional Features for MCC users

Using an MCC grants agencies access to a few additional AdWords features like Manager Defined Spend (MDS) billing and multiple Client Reporting. MDS billing is a simple way for MCC users to control multiple client account budgets across one single invoice. This feature can be beneficial if a client has flexible budgets that need frequent updates due to seasonality or a large client that requires multiple AdWords accounts.  We will go into further detail regarding client billing options in an upcoming Mastering PPC post. In addition to MDS Billing and Client Reporting,  you can also review account alerts and set up automated rules across multiple clients.

Reporting Across Multiple Clients

One of the most beneficial features of using an MCC is the Client Reporting tool. This reporting interface provides the ability to pull reports across multiple client accounts at once. This can be extremely helpful when reviewing Agency-wide performance, or if you want to measure trends across clients within a similar industry. Account managers can also run accounts specifically for just the clients they support. For example, if an account manager is on 4 accounts, they can easily run 1 report for all 4 of their accounts in Client Reporting compared to running the same report 4 different times within each account. This feature saves valuable time when it comes to reporting and analysis.

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Advanced Filtering and Segmentation across Multiple Clients

Along with the ability to report across multiple clients, Client Reporting also allows for simpler filtering and segmentation of data compared to the standard campaign reporting. When creating a report in the MCC’s Client Reporting interface you are given the ability to layer up to 3 segments on one report across multiple accounts. You can also combine the 3 available segments with filters for an even more granular look at the data.  For example, if I wanted to view all of the enhanced campaigns that have an invalid click rate greater than 15% by day of week and device across all my eCommerce clients, I can easily get that level of detail in Client reporting by setting up a report with the following settings.

  • Report Type: Campaign Performance
  • Segments: Device & Day of week
  • Accounts: Select applicable accounts
  • Filters: Network, Enhanced, Invalid clicks >15%

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The MCC Client reporting feature also allows users to schedule recurring reports and have them delivered via email on a regular basis.

One of my favorite Client Reports I have set up on a recurring basis is a Multi-Client – Search Term report which is emailed directly to me each Monday morning for the previous week. This allows me to easily open the report in excel, make a quick pivot table, and review all search terms that produced traffic over the past week.  Through the use of excel filters; I can quickly spot negative keyword opportunities and/or keywords that we should add on exact or phrase match.

Back the original question, what is an MCC?

An MCC is an AdWords account type that allows advertisers to access multiple client accounts via one interface.  By using an MCC, users benefit from simplified reporting across multiple accounts along with some additional advanced billing and management features.

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