Using Recent AdWords Updates

Recently, Google announced some changes to impression share reporting, and some additional Google Analytics data will be available in AdWords.   It’s not all live yet but I can’t wait for this.  I’m happier than Bart Scott getting ready to go to Pittsburgh.

Here are some of the neat things that are or will soon become available, and how we can use them.

Hour of the Day Impression Share Segmentation

Impression share is awesome.  Impression share statistics have always been able to show us if we need to improve our ad rank through bid increases (as shown below).

In other situations, it may be that our budgets are too low and we need additional budget.

My colleague Francis has an excellent post explaining how impression share is calculated and why it matters if you’re interested.

With the new changes, we can now see impression share during a specific hour.  This makes day-parting analysis so much better and allows us to make more insightful decisions on how we adjust our bidding strategies.  Hopefully, we will now be able to see the sub-breakdown (budget, rank, exact match IS) as well but the post does not specifically say that.  Until now, we only saw aggregate data.  Now we can adjust our bids using dayparting settings for specific areas where our lost impression share due to rank is high.

Let’s say you’ve got 98% impression share in a given hour with a great  CPA.  It may not help to increase bids.  If there’s one hour where impression share is very low, increase bids or budget (hopefully we can see lost IS by budget and rank to know which to do) because there is a large opportunity for improvement.

It may be that you only have a few percentage of impression share lost due to budget for the day.  However, during one hour of heavy volume a lot of impression share is lost due to budget.  Now, with hour of the day impressions share data, we know to raise budget whereas before it didn’t appear to be a high priority.

Apply filters, see charts, and create automated rules using impression share metrics.

We can use automated rules to ensure full coverage for valuable campaigns.  If you want to change bids to always show for your brand campaign, set up an automated rule to raise bids if impression share falls below, say 90%.

If you want to apply filter in the AdWords UI to see hours where impression share is low, that will be possible soon.  Charts of impression share by hour of the day will also make it easier to analyze data.

Evaluate landing pages by more than conversion rate

Bounce rate, average visit duration and pages per visit from Google Analytics are all in AdWords at the campaign and ad group level.   I am actually seeing this already, and also at the keyword and ad level in addition to campaigns and ad group as filters and columns.

Imported GA data will especially help advertisers focused on engagement and brand awareness, rather than conversion metrics.  Landing pages will become much easier to evaluate.  For example, conversion rate and bounce data will be in the same place in AdWords for dueling ads in an ACE A/B test for landing pages.

What To Do Next

To get Analytics data into AdWords, connect your AdWords & Google analytics profiles (here is how).  In addition, save old impressions share data for seasonal clients by Halloween.  According to a SEER AdWords rep, by November 3rd historical impression share data in existing columns will only be available going back to October 1, 2012.  On November 4th (assuming the dates go as planned) if you’re creating a holiday season campaign to run from Thanksgiving to Christmas, you will not be able to see what your impression share was like last year.

I can’t wait to do new dayparting analysis with impression share data.  How will you utilize the newly impression share data, and the integrated Google Analytics data?