Summer is sadly coming to an end. While your summer PPC focus was probably prepping for Google Enhanced Campaigns, your fall focus should be on organizing your PPC campaign structure. And that’s just what I want to help you with!
Below, I’ll explain how you can organize your PPC campaigns so they perform better. *Warning* – like Dana’s from last week, this post is Intermediate level.
Whether you have been managing the same campaign for years or have taken over new management, it is likely that you will come across the frustration that is PPC campaign structure. Over time, ad groups are added, keywords are blocked, bids are adjusted, and that cohesive, well-laid-out plan has gone out the window.
It’s time for a clean up.
De-cluttering your PPC campaigns not only makes portfolio management easier and less confusing, but also improves your campaign’s performance as well. For example, your bidding strategy could be causing high CPC broad-matched keywords to swallow up traffic that you would have rather sent to exact or advanced broad matched keywords that have more relevant ad copy. Without a well-thought-out campaign structure, this could go undetected and lead to a lower quality score and conversion rate on top search terms.
There are many ways to go about re-structuring (or building!) a well-thought-out PPC lead generation campaign, and each industry certainly has its best practices. Here are some methods that I have found useful in the B2B landscape.
Theme-Based Ad Groups
Having hundreds of ad groups in a campaign, each with just one or two keywords may seem like the best way to deliver relevant ad copy to your audience. But in reality, getting so specific could be a waste of time.
Instead, pick out the top themes in a campaign and make an ad group for each. If there are too many themes within your campaign, consider breaking main themes out into their own campaigns. This provides a more cohesive campaign structure from which to branch off.
Ad Groups by Match Type
Once a core list of ad groups has been established and keywords are mapped to each, it’s a good idea to replicate these ad groups, separating out keywords by match type. All you have to do is simply copy an entire ad group and change its name according to match type: “Used Cars – Exact”, “Used Cars – Advanced Broad”, etc. Then rearrange keywords so that each is mapped to the corresponding ad group.
This will assist in the creation of bidding and negative keyword strategies, as well as creating the most relevant ad copy.
Negative keywords are as important, if not more important, than the actual keywords being bid on. Clearly, blocking irrelevant search terms is the first step. When creating a campaign for “Used Cars,” for example, you would be sure to block terms such as “toy car” or “remote control car”.
When using the strategy outlined above, this can be taken a step further in order to funnel traffic to the most relevant ad groups. Blocking all of the campaign’s exact match keywords from the non-exact match ad groups will direct all exact match search queries to the exact match ad groups.
This type of funneling makes bidding decisions more precise and may also increase CTR (click-thru-rate) as search queries are leading to more relevant ad copy.
Reorganizing your campaign’s structure may seem like a daunting task but laying out the steps and creating a clear plan ahead of time will make the transition as stress-free as possible. The increased control of traffic flow will ease campaign management and optimization going forward, and you will see improved performance as a result.