Google AdWords is Now Messing with my Ad Rotations

Google

Today I was greeted with a message that Google AdWords will now be in control of ad delivery within my clients’ campaigns. Whoa….I thought it was my job to optimize and be in complete control of how clients’ advertising was controlled within AdWords. I guess Google thinks otherwise.

Here’s the down-low. There are three ad delivery settings for each campaign. Advertisers can choose to optimize for clicks, optimize for conversions, or rotate to show ads more evenly.

As marketers we’re always testing (and if you’re not, you should be). This is where ad rotation plays a huge part in the success of our clients’ campaigns. We are able to rotate ads to see which ads perform best from a click and conversion perspective. But, Google feels that regardless of how we want to run our campaigns, the ads should ultimately be optimized for clicks. Say what….?

Yes, Google has decided that after 30 days from the launch (or change) of a new ad they will automatically switch the ads in an ad group to be optimized for clicks. Here’s how they put it:

Even though this setting is at the campaign level, the even rotation period is tracked separately for each ad group. The even rotation period starts (and resets) for an ad group whenever the ads in the ad group change: when you create a new ad, edit an existing ad, or enable a paused or deleted ad.

What does this mean? This means that Google will be making more money because they get paid every time a click occurs. While this is great for them, it may be detrimental for campaign success. The ad with the highest click through rate may not be the best converting ad for my client. We’re in business for conversions, not simply clicks.

Google feels that “this change will enable us to provide users with the most relevant ad experience and should help advertisers improve the performance of their AdWords accounts”. As an agency that has been in this business since the inception of Google AdWords, we completely and whole-heartedly disagree.

So, what should you do? Wait and hope that the amount of irate customers across the globe can change their mind? Unlikely, I’m sure. For one thing, you should be changing ads regularly anyway.  But for the long-time winners, one tip would be to make a change to at least one ad in each ad group every 30 days in order to keep our timer from expiring. The change doesn’t have to be big….a switch of punctuation, a capitol letter in place of a lowercase…something small and insignificant, unnoticeable to the users eye.

Is Google crazy? At least we are able to opt-out of the exact and phrase match changes that I mentioned last week, but this time there is no opt-out for the ad rotation changes they are implementing. That’s my rant for the day. Hope you found it informative. Let us know what you think about the new ad rotation change. Maybe someone is a little more optimistic about this than us agencies!

 

Jonathan Bentz

About The Author

Jonathan Bentz is a staff writer for Direct Online Marketing. Jonathan is a 13-year SEO veteran and holds a Journalism degree from West Virginia University. His tech industry contributions can be found on Entrepreneur.com, Ecommerce Times, and CIO Online. Jonathan sits on a board for a West Virginia program that aims to build the state’s first all-inclusive playground.

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