The cost per click (CPC) of Google’s Product Listing Ads (PLAs) has increased by 53% year-on-year, reaching an all time high in June as the search engine finally completed the transition of shopping results to a commercial model.
Though PLAs are still cheaper than standard text paid search ads, it shows that Google has successfully managed to cause a massive increase in CPCs by changing how the ad formats work.
In fact, PLA CPCs have increased by 34% since January alone and costs are likely to continue rising despite a slight drop off in July, which is likely as a result of seasonality.
Can you remember back to those days when you naively viewed the internet as an innocent playground of interesting things, before your outlook was forever sullied by initiation into the digital marketing community?
Before your blinkers were taken off and you realised that 95% of everything on the internet has been specifically put there – after a lot of thought, time and investment, I might add – to make money?
Back in February Google announced that it was overhauling the way AdWords worked with the rollout of Enhanced Campaigns.
It’s a catchy name that makes the new system sound like an upgrade on the old model, however there was some disquiet among paid search marketers as Google has essentially removed the ability to run PPC campaigns targeting specific devices.
After an initial grace period Google finally forced everyone to begin using the new system in July, and you can find out more about the switchover in our Enhanced Campaigns migration checklist.
To get further insight about the perceived impact of Enhanced Campaigns, we asked more than 500 search marketers for their opinion of the switchover as part of the new Econsultancy/NetBooster UK Search Engine Benchmark Report 2013.
Google’s automatic migration to enhanced campaigns is swiftly approaching on July 22, 2013. Any existing PPC campaigns will be automatically moved over to the new format.
If you don’t implement a planned migration there’s a risk you could be wasting budget and not getting the most out of your search advertising.
For those advertisers who remain unsure: the essence of enhanced campaigns is that instead of advertisers having to duplicate their effort by managing multiple campaigns in order to target individual devices (desktops, tablets and smartphones), Google has introduced a streamlined format to manage multi device targeting within a single campaign.
Paid search now accounts for around a quarter (24%) of the average business' total marketing budget, according to a new report from Econsultancy and NetBooster.
The UK Search Engine Marketing Benchmark Report 2013 asked respondents about the division of marketing budgets into the search, social media and display categories.
Paid search is apportioned the largest average budget by companies (24%), followed by SEO (18%). Social media and display had equal average share of budget (both 11%).
This figure could potentially increase further by 2014, as more than half of respondents (55%) said they expect their PPC budgets to increase over the next 12 months.
The value of online transactions in China reached $190 billion in 2012 and the country is predicted to overtake the US as the world’s largest ecommerce market at some point this year.
So it’s no surprise that European businesses are eager to try and break into the marketplace.
As with any ecommerce market, search is a vital source of building brand awareness and attracting traffic in China. This means you have to optimise your site for Baidu which has around 83% market share.
Baidu recently signed a deal with CharmClick that gives the company exclusive rights as a resale agent in Europe, which subsequently partnered with Net Media Planet for Baidu ad sales in the UK and Ireland.
A few months ago Google announced a huge change to the way that marketers managed paid search with the launch of Enhanced Campaigns.
One of the biggest changes this involved was the move to group tablet and desktop bids together, so marketers are forced to make one bid for both devices.
In the past we’ve highlighted numerous studies which show that businesses shouldn’t lump tablets and smartphones under one ‘mobile’ umbrella, but now Google has decided to do the opposite by claiming that tablets are essentially the same as desktops.
We recently canvassed opinion among PPC experts about Enhanced Campaigns with the general view being that despite Google’s claim that it's trying to simplify the way AdWords works, it’s actually a ploy to force marketers to increase their mobile spend.
Local search is becoming increasingly important as consumers look to find information about the products and services near to them.
For example, 81% of UK smartphone internet users have looked for local information with their devices, and these people are just as likely to purchase in your store as online.
There’s an extremely valuable amount of traffic available for local queries, so if you are a local business it becomes extremely important to deliver your messaging to these searchers.
Google has focused heavily on improving its local search results experience, and queries that trigger a local results page have increased in number, so that the location no longer needs to be part of the search query.
Google integrates data from Google+ to its map listings, so the easiest way to make sure your business is appearing on a map search is to ensure your Google+ business page is set up and using the correct address.
Here are five examples of PPC ads using location to enhance listings and (hopefully) increase CTR...
It has been a few months since Google introduced its Enhanced Campaigns, which gave marketers a new way of managing their paid search campaigns.
The focus of the change is to enable advertisers to target people at the right time, in the right place, with the right advert and call-to-action. Effectively, the structuring of Adwords campaigns is becoming device independent, removing the ability to have specific mobile, tablet or desktop targeted campaigns.
Up to now PPC managers have had the choice of whether or not they want to switch over to the new system, although the change will become compulsory in a few months.
To find out how the Enhanced Campaigns are impacting the process of managing paid search, I asked four PPC experts to give us some insight into what they’d noticed so far...
The PPC (pay per click) landscape is continually changing as Google introduces new features, and advertisers become more savvy with regards to the customer information that they're tracking, and more accomplished at processing and extracting insights from that wealth of data.
Here are five key areas that I am predicting will have an increasing amount of impact on our PPC activities in the year ahead.