There are a range of reactions to Google’s newly announced AdWords Enhanced Campaigns, which are directed substantially at improving mobile paid search. The changes are significant.
Some are viewing it cynically and critically as a revenue-related move, while others are focused on the new capabilities: making mobile search ads more accessible and more effective.
One widely held view is that Google is trying to close the gap between desktop CPCs and mobile CPCs, which are lower on average. Indeed, Adobe argues advertisers will probably have to pay higher CPCs as a result of the changes. However, according to Larry Kim of Wordstream, call reporting/tracking fees have been dropped.
Marketers will also no longer able to separately target tablets (as they have been able to do). The tablet and PC are being lumped together because of similar user-behavior patterns (although tablets have lower CPCs and higher conversions). I wonder if that holds true for seven inch tablets as well.
There will apparently be no mobile-only keyword bidding any longer. Keywords will need to be shared across the PC and mobile campaigns. But Google is bringing much more depth and nuance to mobile campaigns despite this.
Google is allowing mobile campaigns to be targeted (and bid) by context: location, device, time of day. There will be dynamic elements (as with location and phone extensions) that respond in the ad creative. Bidding can be variably set to reflect the perceived value of leads depending on context, location, day part and so on.
There will also be a wider range of conversion metrics tracked and available. One of the problems with mobile is that marketers often can’t see conversions that don’t happen online, on the same device — and most do not. If they do happen online they typically happen later on another screen.
Some have suggested that small businesses are the intended beneficiaries of many of these changes. I don’t think so; as far as I can tell Enhanced Campaigns creates more options, requires more sophistication (at least around bidding) and therefore adds complexity. As always third parties will have to help the SMB.
Here is useful additional coverage:
- The Big AdWords Update: Enhanced Campaigns Puts The Focus On Mobile
- AdWords Enhanced Campaigns: Google Announces Big Changes to Mobile Ad Campaign Management
- Are Tablets Mobile Devices? How Will Google’s Changes in AdWords Impact Advertisers?
Below is a promotional video that doesn’t reveal much about the mechanics of the new system.