PPC- Pay Per Click

New Adwords Quality Score Updates

Quality Score is a crucial component of how well your Adwords PPC campaigns, keywords, ads do.  That was the brilliance of Google setting up Adwords is that unlike way back where bidding on keywords in Paid Search were only the bid, they factor in how well you set up and optimize your campaigns and Quality Score is a big part.  

Recently there have been alot of updates in Google's Quality Score, real significant ones for the first time since 2013.  For professionals who are managing Adwords accounts, its important to keep up on things so that your information and how you optimize stays current.  

Below are links to Google's post, a great post by noted Adwords pro Frederick Vallaeys and the PPC Rockstars podcast where he's interviewed.  Be sure to check out all 3, especially the podcast:

1.  Adwords Post on QS Update:  https://plus.google.com/u/0/+GoogleAds/posts/aw9kTjzGLcz

2.  Frederick Vallaeys article on QS Update:  http://searchengineland.com/minimum-quality-score-can-save-money-adwords-226757

3.  https://player.fm/series/ppc-rockstars/how-does-quality-score-affect-cost-per-click-in-adwords


Should You Outsource Your PPC Management?

Many businesses and potential clients often struggle with the question:  Should I outsource my PPC campaign management?  Or should we do it ourselves.  Like alot of things, it depends.  

Of course, in my opinion, I'd say outsourcing is almost always the way to go.  Unless your PPC ad spend is very low or you just don't have any money to pay for outsourcing, you in most cases should have a pro handle your PPC management for you?  

Instead of me telling why, I'll link to 3 great articles below.  But before going off-site to these articles, here are a few brief thoughts on why outsourcing your PPC is a good move:

I can definitely speak to the fact that just keeping on top of the changes (500 in the last year alone) is a huge reason to outsource.  Also, knowing what to optimize.  We just optimized a clients account and saved them thousands per month in wasted ad spend.  And of course avoiding costly mistakes.  What you don't know in the complex world of PPC can hurt you (or at least your wallet or bottom line).

Not to mention that not being able to take advantage of advanced PPC techniques, campaigns, etc. (RLSA, Remarketing, Dynamic Keyword Insertion, Call tracking, custom landing pages, event tracking and more).  These advanced areas can really boost your profits.

Also, many often focus on the wrong stats and metrics.  While CTR and CPCs are important, the end results- profits, CPA, CPL and more are outcome based and determine whether PPC adds money into your business or not.  And isn't that what advertising is all about, more sales, leads, profits and customers?

Never mind the time and the fact that a business could never hire an employee for the amount it costs to outsource.  Average salary for a PPC pro is $40-80k/year.  Add in employee benefits, retirement and employer taxes and its more.  At $40k/month, that's at least $3333/month.  You could get a really good PPC pro for that price to manage your account, sometimes for less.

Bottom line:  In most cases, the numbers just work in favor of outsourcing.  

Links to 3 great articles-great food for thought:





Bing Product Ads Campaigns Setup in Plain English

Google has done quite well with their Shopping Campaigns and now Bing has introduced their Product Ads campaign.  It pulls from your data feed and allows people to see your products (and hopefully buy) them on Bing.

There is alot of documentation on the actual setting up of the data feed so you can get your products in Bing Shopping.  Here are links to the videos:



However, their setup of the actual campaign leaves alot to be desired.  They do have a video on this, so go to this link (http://goo.gl/Is9zWf, get confused and come back to this post ; ).  So this post is on how to set things up better than just dumping everything in a big bucket of products.  Hopefully this will explain things in a language that is hopefully more understandable than Bing’s help section, which I found confusing.

Benefits:   Its good to segment out your products.  For example if you sell shoes, you may separate mens shoes, womens shoes, etc.  Then you can go back and see if each segment is performing and bid up/down, change ad text etc. etc. depending.  

Once you get your feed up and running:  You can leave it as a big bucket of all your items.  BUt its better to think it through and set it up, breaking it down in a way that makes sense to you so that you can see how things are performing and adjust over time.  Below is how to do this.  Bing’s Product Ads Campaigns’ terminology is confusing.  So in the steps below, Bings confusing terms are in bold, explained in plain language along with info and strategy.

Top Level:  Your Bing Account

Next Level:  Product Ad Campaign

In Product Ad Campaign:  AKA:  Choose what feed you want to pull from.

Next Level:  Ad groups

In Ad Groups:  

Product Targets:  AKA:  Choose group of products you want to show in each ad group.

Product Ads:  AKA:  Create ad for each ad group.

How to set things up

1.  Create a Product Ad campaign:  Video here:  http://goo.gl/Is9zWf

2.  Create a Product Extension: .  This basically tells the campaign which data feed to use for this campaign.  If you only have one store and one feed, this is what you’ll use.  If you have more than one store or feed you’ll need to decide.  


  • Created at the campaign level

  • Each campaign can use only 1 product extension (or feed).  AKA you can only use one feed per campaign.  But you can use the same feed in more than one campaign if you want.  

  • You can set up filters to tell Bing what types of products you want to show in your campaign by using the Filtered Products instead of All Products.  However, if you do this at the campaign level, all the ad groups you make will follow this filter.  

Strategy:  A better strategy might be to use All Products and then create ad groups and then in each ad group use filters.  More on this later.

So Product Extensions in plain English =choose your data feed.  

3.  Create a ad group(s) in your Product ad campaign.  

Strategy:  You might name it something you want to segment out so you can track how it does vs. other products.  Think through what you offer and create a few ad groups first and name them accordingly.  For example if you sold smartphones it might be:   Ad group #1- Apple Iphones Ad group #2- Samsung Smartphones, etc.  

4.  For each ad group create a Product Target:  A Product Target is basically a grouping of your products.  You define the group by Brand, Product Type, etc.  So click on your ad group then click on Product Targets>Create Product Target.  Choose Filtered products.  Depending on what product you want to show in this ad group, choose from the drop down Brand, Product Type etc.  


  • These are created at the ad group level.  

  • You might have to try a few times to get that green check and Matching Products Found.

  • You can set your bid up or down depending on perhaps how profitable/important the items are to your business.  

  • Remember to first create the ad groups and name them in a way that makes sense to you, then create the Product Targets for each group.

  • Its possible that your filters may not match your products.  If this is the case either update your filters or your product catalog so that they do.


From our example above, if we wanted to show Apple iPhone products in our Apple iPhone ad group, we might select from the dropdown Brand and type in Apple, click apply.  Bing will search your feed and if it matches you’ll see the green check and Matching Products found.  Repeat for your other ad groups you created, segmenting out your items in a way that will make sense to you later so you can see how they do.  

So Product Targets in plain English = Choose which group of products to show in each of your ad groups.

5.  Create a Product Ad:  A Product ad is some ad text that can make your ad stand out from the crowd.   To do this:  In your ad group click Create Ad.  Ad type:   Product Ad.  In the Promotional Text area, write some good ad copy that will make the user click on your ad.  Click save.


  • Any promotional text will apply to all products in the ad group.  

  • Promo text is limited to 45 characters.

  • Promo text has the same editorial policies as regular text ads.


  • Make sure your promo text applies to the ad group.  For example, if you’ve created an ad group targeting iPhone cases, your promo text might be:  “Quality iPhone Cases in All Colors”.

  • Use your promo text to highlight unique offers (Free Shipping) etc.  

So Product Ads in plain English = Ad text that may show with you ads.  

Overall Notes with Bonuses:

1.  You don’t have to do any of the above.  Product ads pulls info from your feed to generate the image, price, brand.  You can leave everything in a big bucket if you want.  You don’t have to create promotional text, etc.

2.  Before you the above steps, think through how you want to segment your products.  Do it in a way so that at a glance you can see what’s doing the best, what’s not.

3.  After time has passed, check your performance.  You may want to big higher for really awesome performing products.  Bid lower for others, create new segments etc.  

Be sure to create one Product Target that targets all products, to make sure you don’t leave anything out.  

4.  Find your reports in the Reports tab to see performance.  


Search Term:  What queries are people using to find your products.  Find negative keywords here.  

Product Target:  Which products are performing the best?

Offer Reports:  What offers are working best?

5.  Get creative:  Are your product seasonal?  Brand specific.   Break them up for maximum results.

Bonus!  Bing Product ads doesn’t have you bid on keywords, like search campaigns.  However, it DOES support negative keywords.  So, you can drop in as many negatives that you want.  For example if you sell garden hose, but not garden hose reels, you can add the keyword “reel” or “reels” or both as a negative.  This will make your campaign perform better and you also won’t pay for clicks for things you don’t sell.

Bonus #2:  Make more than one Product Ad Promotion in each Ad Group.  In this way you can see which does best and improve over time.

Hopefully the above will help to have you get the most of your Bing Products Ads campaigns.  What do you think?


How to Track Adwords Video Remarketing in Google Analytics

Hopefully you're trying and testing out Adwords Video Remarketing.  Adwords for video is right in the main campaign area but Adwords Video Remarketing is separated out a bit.  

About Adwords Video Remarketing:  One of the nice differences with Video Remarketing is you can remarket to people who have interacted with your YouTube channel or page and serve them ads.  For full information, see Google's info and start testing:  


This post is about tracking traffic and engagement from your Adwords Video Remarketing to your site.  Did your Video Remarketing campaigns result in more traffic to your site, more conversions.  


After running a number of Video Remarketing campaigns I noticed that I was getting alot of views of the clients videos and even clicks to the site, which is great.  

However, when I went into Google Analytics (GA), I didn't see any stats from these video remarketing campaigns, traffic numbers, or other data.  I contacted Google and they said that, unlike regular Google Adwords where everything is tracked automatically in GA if you have GA and Adwords linked,  at this time the tracking is not really up and running for video remarketing as a source of traffic you can measure in Google Analytics.  

Since its so important to track all your advertising to see if its brings good ROI, there had to be a workaround, and there is.  And in looking around in finding a solution to this workaround I found a couple of other cool things and tips that can benefit your tracking efforts.


Use Google's URL Builder: GA has a feature that allows you to track anything on the web you set up and see the data in your GA account.  You use utm tracking parameters to tell GA where the traffic came from.  For example, if you have an ad on a site, you can add info to the link in that add that goes to your page.  So in the ad it goes to perhaps your sites URL:  www.mysite.com when they click on that ad.  If you want to add important information to the ad so you can track it in GA you'd use the utm parameters and add the campaign, ad, and more like this:  www.mysite.com?utm_source=google&utm_medium=cpc&utm_campaign=campaign 1&utm_content=new video

It looks confusing but its not.  You use Google's URL builder to set it up, its very easy.  Link here:  https://support.google.com/analytics/answer/1033867?hl=en

Use this to track your Video Remarketing Campaigns:  You can then use the URL builder to add the correct tracking tags to your Video Remarketing list campaigns so you can then see them in GA.  

But I thought Google already automatically tags Adwords, won't this mess up the numbers in GA?  Yes, BUT only if you simply dropped in the tagged URL you created, such as the one you see above.  There is a cool workaround that allows you to tag a URL and not have it mess up Google Adwords auto-tagging.  How?  Use a url shortener.  

Use a URL Shortener to Shorten Tagged URLs:   You're probably familiar with URL shortners like bit.ly or goo.gl.  They take a long, ugly URL and make it real short.  Did you know you can take a long URL that is tagged like the above URL, drop it into goo.gl and shorten it?  The coolest part about this is that the tags you set up still work in the shortened URL!  Super cool!  Even better, now you can track your Adwords Video Remarketing campaigns in GA and not have Adwords Auto Tagging mess up.  

So Let's Recap:

To track Adwords Video Remarketing campaign in GA: 

  1. Use Google's URL builder to correctly set up a tracking URL. 
  2. Drop that tagged URL into goo.gl URL shortener. 
  3. Use that shortened URL as your destination URL in your Adwords Video Remarketing ad. 


1.  Great I set this up, Now where do I look for my data in GA? 

Good Question!  In GA go to Traffic Sources>Overview>Search>Campaigns:

Then you'll see your Video Remarketing data there.   

Question 2:  Is there an easier way to create the utm parameters and then shorten them?

Well, its really not that hard going to Google's URL Builder then dropping them into goo.gl to shorten them.  But since you asked- yes!

There's a cool tool from savio.no that not only creates the tagged URL but can shorten it on the fly, download it to Excel, make a QR code from it and more.  Check it out here.

Here's a screenshot of the tool with an example URL:   


Of course, you can use this technique to track anything you'd like, Facebook ads and posts, Tweets, anything else you'd like to track.  See this great article to learn all about utm parameters and all the things you can track:  

How To Use UTM Parameters In Google Analytics 5

So, what do you think, will this help you track your Video Remarketing ads in Google Analytics? 

 Update:  I noticed that in Google Analytics (GA), there were a number of keywords showing up as (not set).  I figured out that it was the URLs from the above Adwords Video Remarketing campaigns.  The only way I know to have it not show up as (not set) is to add a utm term or utm keyword parameter.  

You could put it like this (see bold are in URL below):  http://www.mysite.com?utm_source=google&utm_medium=cpc&utm_campaign=mycampaignname_video_remarketing&utm_content=my_ad&utm_term=no_keyword_video_ad

Its not a perfect workaround but at least you won't have many visits showing up as (not set) and clients wondering why this is the case.


Mobile/Desktop URLs In Adwords Enhanced Campaigns: How To


There's been alot of pluses and minuses to Google's new Enhanced Campaigns.  

One of the major problems is what if you have two different URLs one for people on desktop, sending them to your regular site and one for mobile, sending them to a mobile site or mobile optimized page?  

Before you'd just copy your desktop campaign, set it to mobile only and change all the destination URLs to send people to your mobile site.  But now that mobile, tablet and desktop are all in the same campaign how can you send the mobile people to the mobile page and the desktop people to the desktop page?

Yes, you can create new ads and set the device preference to "mobile", which is correct.  But what if you have hundreds of ad groups with thousands of ads.  Copy each ad in each ad group and then setting them to mobile optimized could take forever.  Well, there is an answer!

Thankfully, there's Adwords Editor, Google's desktop PPC management tool.  If you haven't started using this, start now.  This is what you'll be using to make the changes en masse.  Here's how to do it:

Setting up Ads for Mobile-Optimized Page using Adwords Editor

Basic Steps:

  • Duplicate all the ads in your Campaigns/Ad Groups you want to set to mobile.
  • Set these new ads all to mobile-preferred and edit the Destination URL.

To do this en mass within Adwords Editor:

  • Go to the "Ads" tab for your entire account
  • Select all ads you want to be mobile preferred ("Edit" > "Select All")
  • Click "Edit" > "Replace text in selected Items"
  • Put something generic next to 'Find Text' (e.g. "a"). You can put this same letter next to 'Replace Text'. 
    • Make sure to uncheck "Match Case" and check "Duplicate Matching Items..."
    • This will essentially duplicate all your ads in their existing campaigns and ad groups!
    • Click "Find Matches" > "Duplicate and Replace All" 
    • Sort these newly created ads by "All Local Unposted Changes", or clicking on the 'Changed Status' column (there will be a + sign next to all the new ads) 
    • Highlight all the newly created ads and change the Device Preference to "Mobile", and the Destination URLs en masse.
    • Upload your changes- done!

    Everyone who saved about a months worth fr work on this owes me a coffee!  ; )

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