Google PPC advertising historically was the first channel for most brands entering digital advertising. With the growth of Paid Social advertising in recent years it’s not been viewed as a core growth channel, but a necessary evil to compliment other activities.
The post iOS world is seeing Google Ads suddenly back en-vogue with the clarity on performance and results attracting a surge in advertising budgets.
While the original SEM strategy was simply text based ads responding to direct keyword searches. The complexity of today’s Search Engine results now includes Search, Shopping, Maps, Google My Business and Search Partners (which blurs what a search result is).
Even the concept of pay-per-click is being challenged with smart bidding options like Target CPA and Maximise ROAS blurring the idea of importance of cpc (cost per click) metrics that were once the bedrock of a great Search Strategy.
The idea of a ‘Search Strategist’ is no longer possible, and with the rise of Automation and now launch of Performance Max campaigns, to effectively manage any pay-per-click SEM campaign requires a full funnel mindset.
“What percentage of my budget should be going to PPC campaigns?”
Google PPC Advertising as a concept is being challenged with the mix of Automation and Performance Max campaigns changing the game on what is considered a Search ad.
Instead advertisers need to consider any Google Ad activity in terms of full funnel activations. The old Brand, Competitor, Generic structure split into Broad, Exact and Phrase match is not a suitable strategy for brands who are looking to scale Google Ads performance.
And in fact if you are still operating on this old structure to maximise control and visibility, you are definitely limiting your ability to grow.
Design-conscious brands on Google Ads instead need to create structures that allow maximum flexibility for the Google Ads algorithm to pick your winners automatically and in future years this extends beyond keyword structure alone. With now Creative, Audiences and even Placements (Search, Shopping, Display, YouTube) through PerformanceMax best served as open options, rather than manually controlled.
In many ways the shift of Google Ads is copying the footsteps of Facebook Ads audience & placement liquitidy of a few years ago.