In 2019, marketing automation isn’t an option, it’s a necessity if you want to keep up with the competition. According to Forrester research, spending on marketing automation tools is expected to reach $25.1 billion annually by 2023. Investing in an advertising platform is just one of many ways to start seeing the benefits of automation today. So, why prioritize it over other options? Automation has begun to illustrate its value across marketing channels, but none so much as paid search. In this article, we explore how an automated search advertising platform can help you improve PPC performance and multiply conversions in the long run.
How Automation Helps Search Engine Advertisers in 2019
Automated search advertising platforms can help PPC managers streamline and optimize myriad advertising processes. Here’s an overview of the main ways automation helps search engine advertisers in 2019:
Creating Better Ads
Creating relevant ads for all ad groups and campaigns is a constant challenge for advertisers. You have to create compelling copy that matches target landing pages to drive clicks and conversions. Now though, thanks to artificial intelligence and machine learning, it’s possible to automate ad creation with a more relevant and targeted message.
A prime example of this in action is Google’s responsive search ads. With this ad type, you create multiple headlines and descriptions so that Google Ads can test different combinations. It also adapts your ad content to match potential customers’ search terms. Using responsive search ads also gives you access to Google’s ad strength tool, which generates suggestions and ad ideas based on past performance and the competitive landscape:
Dynamic search ads (DSAs) are another option to automate ad creation. This ad-type is particularly valuable for large businesses that sell many products. That’s because with DSAs, Google bots crawl an advertiser’s site content and automatically create ads based on relevant landing page content. Doing this automatically helps ensure advertisers don’t accidentally promote products that are out of stock.
DSAs can also improve ad relevance overall, automatically creating headlines based on landing page copy and user search queries. The keyword insertion feature allows ads to automatically generate headline copy to match search queries, improving ad relevance and clicks in the process. According to Google, using machine learning and automation to create ad copy can improve clicks by up to 15%.
Improving Ad Targeting
There are many ways automated search advertising platforms can help you automate ad targeting. For instance, Google’s dynamic search ads (mentioned above) automatically identify what keywords to target based on your landing page content. DSAs can help advertisers discover relevant keywords they may have overlooked with their traditional advertising campaigns.
The Recommendation tab in Google Ads and the Opportunities tab in Bing can also offer valuable automated suggestions to improve ad targeting. The Recommendations feature uses artificial intelligence to suggest improvements to your ads and extensions, bids and budgets, and keywords and targeting.
It can suggest new audiences to add to your campaigns, and set up new audience sources, for example. It can also suggest new keywords and negative keywords to add to your lists to improve campaign performance.
Smart Campaigns are now the default campaign type in Google Ads. They include a variety of automation features, including automated bidding. This allows Google Ads to make bid changes to drive business goals of your choice. Here’s an overview of the types of automated bid strategies available through Google Ads:
Goal: Increase site visits > Strategy: Maximize clicks
Goal: Increase visibility > Strategy: Target Impression Share
Goal: Get more conversions with your target CPA > Strategy: Target CPA
Goal: Meet a target on ROAS when you value each conversion differently > Strategy: Target ROAS
Goal: Get more conversions while spending your budget > Strategy: Maximize Conversions
Third-party automated search advertising platforms also have automated bidding options based on more nuanced performance indicators and goals. For example, it’s possible to target more than one performance metric simultaneously or take a portfolio approach to bid optimization across campaigns within your account.
Automated bidding is probably the most essential feature advertisers should take advantage of in 2019. With manual bidding, it’s simply impossible for PPC managers to keep their max CPC optimized. Numerous market factors and competition impact how much advertisers should bid on keywords to reach their advertising goals. And these factors are changing daily. In the time it takes PPC managers to make adjustments manually, they’re wasting valuable ad spend on inefficient bidding.
Automated bidding can factor in important signals like device, location, time of day, language, operating system and more to interpret the value of every search and bid accordingly. This improves campaign performance and reduces wasted ad spend in the process.
Maximizing Data Insights
Advertisers today use a wealth of data to drive insights and optimize their campaigns. But often they’re stuck using a variety of different platforms to manage and analyze this data. PPC managers also run into issues trying to process and analyze the large volume of relevant data that comes in every day.
But when you use a comprehensive automated search advertising platform, it’s possible to process and analyze large amounts of relevant business data in one place. Using one tool to handle media buying, campaign management and targeting ensures you can maximize the value of your data across the campaign lifecycle.
This is one area where Google Ads falls short. Google’s Smart Campaigns can automate changes based on data gathered from Google properties, the competitive landscape and audience behavior. But there’s significant relevant business data beyond this, such as customer lifetime value data, offline data, and inventory information. A comprehensive third-party automated search advertising platform can draw on all these data insights to make informed targeting and bidding decisions.
Automated Reporting and Forecasts
Advertisers today spend a significant amount of time sifting through performance data and looking for opportunities to improve campaigns. But both Google Ads and third-party reporting tools are making this process a lot easier with automation.
In Google Ads, you can easily filter through and customize what metrics you want to see and for what time frame. Once you create customized reports, you can schedule to have them emailed to you at whatever frequency you want. Google Ads can also integrate with Google Sheets, if you want to easily export data and run your own analyses.
Automated search advertising platforms can also help advertisers automate forecasting reports. Google Ads has a free internal forecasting feature in Keyword Planner, allowing PPC managers to project the clicks, impressions, cost, CTR, and average CPC of a given group of keywords over time.
Third-party search advertising platforms can also automate reports and forecasting with more detail and precision. QuanticMind, for example, can predict performance up to 100 days into the future, considering factors such as historical performance, seasonality, bid landscape data, and important business metrics that Google Ads doesn’t pay attention to.
Saving Time and Money
Lastly, and arguably most importantly, all these automation features together can serve to save search advertisers precious time and money. Automating low-value tasks like bid optimization and ad copy testing can free up PPC managers to focus on tasks that improve performance and multiply conversions, such as discovering new audiences to target or taking advantage of other opportunities.
Using automation to improve ad targeting and bid more efficiently also makes it easier to meet advertising goals with less budget. By minimizing unnecessary ad spend, advertisers can reallocate their extra budget to new growth initiatives, expanding their PPC campaigns and scaling their business.
Different Types of Automated Search Advertising Platforms
Google Ads is just one of a vast number of automated search advertising platforms out there today. Each platform has a different focus and features, so you can choose the best option for your search advertising needs.
Here’s an overview of some of the most popular automated search advertising platforms out there today:
Google Ads is definitely the frontrunner when it comes to automated search advertising platforms. It was the first to start rolling out features that encourage all advertisers to use some amount of automation to create and manage campaigns. As mentioned above, Smart Campaigns, responsive search ads, dynamic search ads, automated bidding and the Recommendations tab are all examples of this in action.
Any business advertising through Google search should take advantage of some of the automation features Google Ads has to offer. That said, some needs are better addressed through third-party platforms with additional features and data analysis capabilities.
For many years Bing Ads tried to create a different platform with a unique experience from Google Adwords. Now it has redirected to emulating Google’s advertising offerings, including automation. You’ll find that valuable features like automated bidding and dynamic search ads are available on Bing as well as Google Ads. Bing also makes it easy to import campaigns from Google to their platform, so you can easily automate processes across search networks.
QuanticMind is first and foremost an intelligent bid optimization software designed to help you drive more revenue from your PPC campaigns. Using AI-powered bidding algorithms paired with machine learning, it’s possible to consistently improve results from your SEM program beyond what Google’s automated bidding strategies can provide.
The platform is also constantly introducing new features that expand your automation and optimization capabilities. Examples include Bing Shopping automation, forecasting, automated audience bid adjustments, location mapping, and more. Rather than simply emulate the automation capabilities of Google Ads, QuanticMind’s team is always on the lookout for new and unique ways to use automation to optimize and simplify search engine advertising.
WordStream is an advertising management tool allowing users to manage their Bing, Google, and Facebook ad campaigns from a single dashboard. It offers a variety of automation features to simplify and streamline ad campaign management, including ad creation, conversion tracking, and performance reporting.
SEMrush is actually an array of tools that marketers can use to gain more visibility online, including paid and organic search and social media. The platform is probably best known for its keyword and competitor research tools, helping marketers build a robust targeting strategy to gain results from their paid and organic efforts.
AdStage is an advertising platform specifically designed for reporting and automation. It allows businesses to store their paid search, paid social, web analytics and conversion data all in one place. This makes it easier to analyze and drive actionable insights to improve campaign performance. Advertisers also save significant time pulling data and preparing unique data analyses to get the insights they want.
The Bottom Line
These solutions are just a few examples of the many automated search advertising platforms out there today. Most options are specialized to solve specific problems for PPC managers, such as ad targeting, ad creation, bidding, or analytics. But if you want to get the most out of automated search advertising, it’s best to choose a comprehensive solution that can automate the most PPC management tasks.
With intelligent bidding solutions for search and shopping as well as new features rolling out all the time, QuanticMind is uniquely positioned to help maximize the value of automation and multiply conversions from your search advertising efforts.