Back to Basics – How to effectively organize a paid search account

PPC_Account_Organization

In the last post, we briefly touched on the various match types available in Google AdWords and Bing Ads. In this blog post, we will review some of the best practices in account organization.

As you may know a typical account structure looks like below. Most of you will have only single account structure and use campaigns to differentiate between goals. Most of the brands I have worked with use effectively match types and ad group separation effectively to —

  • Understand which keywords are performing better in terms of CTR and conversions
  • Understand the optimal bid rate to provide
  • Customize landing pages to appeal to individual audience groups

Following are the key usage patterns / best practices

Separating Brand and Non-Brand

One of the key distinctions brands make when it comes to creating campaigns is to separate our brand keywords and non-brand keywords. Within a campaign, you could use various sub brands. For example, a loan and re-financing company could create a campaign with individual ad groups focusing on mother brand, products or sub brands.
This separation is also seen when budgets come from different organizations. For example, a big company may have budget coming from branding team as well as individual LOB demand generation teams.

Separating match types

Within a campaign, its always better to separate out ad groups based on match types. It should be noted that both Bing Ads and Google AdWords give priority to narrower match types (exact) over broader ones (broad). This is a generic rule; of course other aspects like your landing page, quality score etc. will also be taken into account when showing the ad. It’s also suggested to bid higher for narrower match types when compared to braod match types.

Grouping based on products/offerings

As in the case of Brand v/s Non-Brand; oftem campaigns and ad groups are used to separate out LOBs, product lines, services and events. Match types can be effectively used to target prospective customers specifically looking for a product (for example, JBL SB150 Soundbar).

Grouping based on intention

Another idea to separate out keywords is based on user intention.For example, a bank offering student loans could targeting the intention of a student searching for scholarship applications. Another example could be a software company targeting users searching for coupons (For example, godaddy discount coupon). Long Tail keywords are another set that falls into this category. For example, an eCommerce company could target ‘how to use a lens cleaning kit’ or ‘best lens cleaning kit’.
It’s also better to separate out ads using extensions. This not only helps to better manage conversion optimization; but also helps understand how the extensions are working for you.

Grouping based on competition/allied searches

This is another theme I have seen; but quality score may be low since you are directly bidding for against a competitor keyword / unrelated landing page. For example, Best Buy could target for Walmart.

Naming Convention

It’s also key to make sure you use a standard naming convention across campaigns, and ad groups. For example an ideal campaign name should have

Engine|Region|Country|LOB|Brand|MatchType|Goal (G|US|CA-|Printers|Branded|BMM|Activation)

and Ad Group should have

Product|MatchType|Goal (Lenses|Nikon|Broad|Reach)

What are some of the best practices you follow when it comes to organizing your keywords and naming conventions?

About Vijay Sankar 42 Articles
A techie turned business professional; presently living in Cochin, India. For bread and butter, exploring the domain of marketing attribution. I hold an Electrical Engineering degree from College of Engineering, Trivandrum and Executive MBA (PGPEM) from Indian Institute of Management Bangalore

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