When is a Good Time to Turn on AdWords Conversion Optimizer
It should be common knowledge that Google now offers an automatic bid management system built into AdWords called Conversion Optimizer.
What? You have never of it? You bad, BAD boy (or girl, or…)
Basically, it looks at your account’s historical conversion data and determines how much it should bid for each individual search query and tries to maximize the number of conversions with your predetermined max CPA. Oh, and you need only 15 conversions in the past 30 days to start running conversion optimizer.
Sounds pretty sweet, right? Everyone should just use it right away once they meet the minimum threshold and start saving time and money!
Unfortunately, like life, it isn’t always that simple, and can be full of disappointments.
Here are a few things you must do before you turn on conversion optimizer, otherwise you’ll run into more problems than the time you saved:
- Make sure your keywords are broken down into small, tightly-themed ad groups. If you haven’t noticed, conversion optimizer doesn’t allow you to change bids for individual keywords in each ad groups. You are only allowed to change the ad groups’ max CPA. For example, if you sell Cave Man Stone Wheels, and you have the keywords “round stone wheels” and “square stone wheels” both under the same ad groups, and later on you realize “square stone wheels” isn’t performing as well as the rounds (go figure why…), you can’t just lower the bids for “square stone wheels” you don’t have that option. At this point, you can’t even move that keyword out to a new ad group under the same conversion optimizer campaign, because it will take Google a while to assess historical data and come up with new bids for this keyword. Your best bet is to create a regular campaign and do manual bidding.
- Make sure your keyword list is as extensive as possible. Related to the previous point, once you have optimizer turned on, it’s really hard to add new ad groups to the campaigns, because the newly created keywords probably won’t have much history. Again, you have to create another regular campaign just for them. Nothing really wrong with it, but you are left with more and more campaigns to look after when in reality everything should have been under just one campaign.
- Make sure your campaign is as optimized as possible. This relates to the previous two points, and every other possible technique you can use. Once you turn on conversion optimizer, the most that you can do on a granular level is probably just adding negative keywords. Any other keyword level activities will upset the Google algorithm, and you are likely to see a decrease in conversion while conversion optimizers re-assess your data.
- Make sure your impression share is at a decent level. If you are getting only very low impression share, don’t turn on optimizer. Spend some time to increase your impression share first. Once optimizer is turned on, there isn’t much you can do to push keywords.