3 Changes to Adwords
Exact Match now includes “Close Variants”
Google have announced the inclusion of two new metrics in their reports for companies using AdWords.
They have also made changes to exact match keywords. It is effectively a dilution of the control we have over our advertising as our ‘exact match’ keywords will now contain more ‘close variants’. This is not going to be popular with advertising agencies or their clients.
Adwords Unique Reach
Google Adwords are introducing a new metric, Unique Reach, similar to the ‘exact reach’ metric of Facebook Ads that measure reach and frequency. This new data in the reports will show the average number of impressions per user across devices and will show the number of unique views. The new metric will allow advertisers to see how many people actually saw the add and how many saw it multiple times. It brings Adwords into line with other ad platforms and is going to be very useful.
Video Watch Time Reporting
Adwords will now give is an increased understanding of which video ads are the most engaging and are hold the viewer’s attention the longest with their new Watch Time reporting. This will help us make our YouTube campaigns more efficient with watch time data on both in-stream and bumper campaigns. We will know which ads are really making an impact. (Bumper ads are the ones you can’t switch off for the first six seconds of a YouTube video).
Adwords will also show data in viewability and audability rates for YouTube Ads. Ad recall is much higher if the user could both see and hear the video.
Changes to Exact Match Keywords
The goalposts have moved again! All of our exact match keywords are to be diluted by being matched with close variants. Exact match keywords have been a very important focus of Adwords Campaigns. These are the terms that we can control the match with the landing page topic and thereby increase our quality score, a multiplier in the Adwords auction process, which has made this match type the main focus for cost efficient campaigns for a high percentage of Adwords consultants and agencies.
The full extent of Google’s rewording, of what was previously always presented exactly as we wrote it, is not yet known. When I say “previously” I mean a while back because close variants have been applied for some time now, but they are officially increasing it. For many this is going to be a nightmare (I’m sure you can imagine some stumbling blocks waiting in your industry niche). Advertisers will need to pay close attention to their keywords actually typed when ads were clicked by visiting the Dimensions tab and then View: Search Terms. I have saved organizations a lot of money in the past by ‘correcting’ their very loosely focused broad match keywords and producing phrase match and exact match terms in their place, with exact match being the ultimate goal, and phrase match or modified broad match used to broaden reach when we cannot cover every keyword combination, or when terms become too obscure and are never clicked and never obtain a quality score of their own.
In addition to changing our words for ones that they have decided mean very similar things they will also include reordering of exact match keyword. When you thought you had advertising budget on the keyword “train London to Paris” you will now also show for “train Paris to London”. There is a lot of additional work to do to create efficient and targeted campaigns. Google’s premise must be that it’s worth wasting a little money to increase your reach and broaden your customer base. For some industries this lack of control will have large budgetary implications.
For each exact match keyword we are now going to think through and write down every possible permutation of word order and with injected ‘similar terms’. We will then need to write long lists of negative match keywords for each one to eliminate the undesirables. I think it is probably easier to control modified broad match terms than exact match now. If broad match is going to be killed off I think they should just stop using the term as it’s anything but exact match.