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Five ways machine learning improves PPC advertising

30-second summary:

  • The machine learning advanced capabilities for smart bidding available in Google Ads provide an easy way to get the campaign results you want while taking a simpler approach.
  • You can use Smart Bidding at the campaign level or, if you prefer, apply it to your entire ad portfolio to optimize all of your campaigns using Google’s ML algorithms.
  • Marketing consultant Gabrielle Sadeh explains five different goals Smart Bidding can optimize for – and when to use each one.

PPC advertising is a central part of many brands’ online marketing efforts. Unfortunately, getting the most out of your PPC bidding can be difficult to say the least.

Some brands are over-bidding for keywords, rank high for a short period of time, but are blowing their marketing budgets. Others don’t offer enough and never see themselves reaching the conversion rates they hoped for.

The good news is that there is a smarter way to bid. Google’s Smart Bidding options, available through Google Ads, provide an easy way to see the campaign results you want while also taking a simpler approach.

These advanced algorithms rely on multiple context signals to improve performance. Some of these signals are only available when using Smart Bidding. This Include factors such as local intent, remarketing lists, ad characteristics, and seasonality. Bid strategies are also available at the portfolio level, so you can apply machine learning to optimize all of your campaigns.

By letting Google’s machine learning algorithms take a bunch of PPC bids, you can focus more on others Marketing and Conversion TacticsB. the optimization of your ad copy or the design of landing pages. Google Ads currently offers five smart bid options. This is how you can improve your PPC advertising each time.

1. Target Return on Advertising Spend (ROAS)

Target ROAS allows you to maximize the value of your campaign based on how much revenue you want for every dollar you spend on PPC advertising. For example, if your goal is to get $ 7 in revenue for every $ 2 you spend on clicks, that means you have a target ROAS of 350%.

After entering your target ROAS, your Google Ads campaign will bid on cost-per-click campaigns to achieve that goal.

The target ROAS depends heavily on your historical data. Google requires Your campaign will have 15 or more conversions in 30 days using Target ROAS to optimize search ads, and there are different minimum requirements for other types of ads.

However, for best results, you should get 50 conversions over a 30-day period in front for the implementation of target ROAS bids. This way, the algorithm has data to learn from.

According to Google’s own internal research, this bid method can increase conversion value by an average of 10 35%.

2. Target cost per acquisition (CPA)

The Target CPA allows advertisers to set a cost-per-acquisition (CPA) target that they want to achieve with PPC advertising campaigns. When you use this parameter as an optimization target, Google’s Smart Bidding algorithm will aim to generate conversions at average cost that is equal to or below your target CPA.

This way you can increase your sales without the risk of overspending.

If you already have a Google Ads account, Google will use your historical data to recommend a target CPA when you set up bids. It’s often a good idea to follow this guideline because setting a goal that is significantly below your current CPA can crash your conversion rate.

Source: Client boost

In a last one Case study The conversion of a customer from manual bids to Target CPA-based Smart Bidding, as published by KlientBoost, led to an increase in the conversion rate of 107% and at the same time reduced the costs per conversion by over 40%. By pulling on your historical data and context signals, Target CPA is an easy way to get more conversions for less.

3. Target impression percentage

Not every PPC campaign will focus on direct sales and conversions. Many brands try to increase search ad impressions in order to generate demand and awareness for a brand and its services.

Very often, these ads can prove to be effective in attracting new leads. Targeted impression sharing bids optimize your bids to maximize your ad impressions on the SERPs.

As part of this smart bid strategy, you can choose to have your ads appear at the top of the search results page, at the top, or anywhere on the page. Users can customize these goals as they see fit so your ads can appear at the top of some search results and a sidebar in others.

Device optimization can be particularly important in this strategy. In one Case study Due to metric theory, target impression bids, the total cost per click increased for both mobile and desktop devices. However, the campaign increased mobile spend by an impressive 87% as bids were redirected to lower-cost mobile users.

PPC Advertising - Impression Share Targeting

Source: Metric theory

Because target impression bidding is based on real-time data, the bid adjustments from your manual campaign will be overwritten. The only exception is the ability to turn off mobile bidding.

4. Maximize the clicks

Similar to target impression approval, maximizing clicks as a smart bidding parameter doesn’t necessarily focus on increasing your conversion rate. However, this can still be a viable bid strategy for your PPC campaigns.

With “Maximize Clicks”, Google adjusts the bids to get as many clicks as possible within your average daily budget parameters. A dramatic increase in traffic to your website can serve as a valuable method of collecting data for future campaigns in preparation for the transition to Target ROAS or Target CPA bidding.

As you get more users to your website, you can strengthen your branding and create lists – an invaluable strategy for B2B businesses that need more personalized sales pitches.

Indeed, a Case study PPC Hero found that while Maximize Clicks was generally successful in increasing total clicks and generally reducing campaign cost per click, these campaigns tended to have fewer conversions.

As with Target Impression Share, Maximize Clicks campaigns should focus more on awareness and leads than actual sales.

This campaign option allows for some manual adjustments, e.g. For example, you can schedule your ads to show (or not show) on specific days or times.

5. Maximize conversions

For conversion-focused digital marketers, Maximize Conversions is an extremely attractive option for smart bidding. As with Target CPA and Target ROAS, this bid strategy is based on a mix of historical data and contextual cues to optimize ad placement.

The big difference with Maximize Conversions is that you focus less on your acquisition costs and more on volume. This can be especially helpful if you are working on a budget.

Increasing your sales volume in the early stages of your business will fuel word of mouth growth in the future as more and more customers leave reviews of your products and share their impressions with others through word of mouth. This makes future campaigns more cost-effective thanks to the social proof you’ve created for your brand.

Using machine learning for PPC advertising

Source: Google

However, this strategy doesn’t take ROI into account – it just tries to spend all of your available budget to get the maximum number of conversions possible. This can add to your cost per acquisition or daily spend, which makes this option less than ideal if you are closely following these metrics.

A smarter way to bid

Trying to figure out which bid maximizes your campaign goals without breaking your budget can be a difficult balancing act. By switching heavy lifting to machine learning, you can ensure stronger performance Results for your campaigns At the same time, you have more time to further optimize other important advertising elements.

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