Bid Management, Google, Paid Search, Product Listing Ads, Quality Score, Web Marketing:

Winning with PPC can be a mystery to marketers. The days when the simple equation of high bid + CTR assumed your ad positioning in search results are long behind us. Today the PPC world has evolved and quality score is the way to gain ad visibility. Merkle | RKG analysts are experts in breaking down the quality score elements and helping brands take the guesswork out of PPC. And, of course, we add to the industry knowledge pool form right here on the RKG blog.

Google’s recently released whitepaper outlining recommendations for the soon to be mandatory Shopping Campaign model offers up best practices for feed optimization, campaign structure, bid management, and mobile strategy. While there’s plenty to dissect in this whitepaper, I found it interesting that Google chose not to mention item ID level targets at all in their structural recommendations.

Google announced a change to their Ad Rank logic that has likely resulted in advertisers paying much higher CPCs for their brand terms.

Today, Google announced an update to the way they calculate and report AdWords Quality Score (QS) to advertisers. This is likely to cause much confusion, doubt and unrest in our industry, but rest assured we believe this change will be neutral-to-positive.

Why is my quality score low. Now we can find out!

Google recently introduced the ability to automatically push keyword bids to the top of page CPC. Does it make sense for advertisers to utilize this new feature?

Conversation with Jonathan Alferness on new landing page Quality Score signals

Far too much has been written about Quality Score already and I’m loathe to add to the pile, but I have some ideas that might help us all.

In the AdWords interface, Google provides several pieces of information at the keyword level to help advertisers determine whether a low impression term has a remediable problem. Here are a few things to check.

Could Google crank up its revenue? Sure thing.

It’s human nature to want to know what everyone else is doing. But don’t burn valuable time and money studying benchmarks.

Sometimes a 5 is as good as it gets.

Setting the Record Straight – Negative keywords, matchtypes and average positions do not affect your Google AdWords Quality Score.

Does the auction work the way Google says it does? Maybe, but maybe not.

George rants about myths and the people who propagate them.

As a core component of paid search quality score, a strong Click-Through Rate (CTR) is vital for ensuring lower costs per click and higher ad visibility. If you are seeing your CTR decline over months or years it can be concerning, but not necessarily an indication of a problem with your copy or PPC program as a whole.

Quality Score and Bid play equal roles in determining an ads visibility, but that doesn’t mean you should spend the same amount of time working on each.

Hacking through the mythology surrounding Google’s Quality Score.

Google released their Quality Score Changes early last week. Based on early results, we’re seeing minimal effects.