Google recently rolled out enhanced campaigns for AdWords and a lot of Google grantees are wondering how this affects their charities.
Simply put, upgrading to enhanced campaigns won’t do you any harm. However, for most grantees it will only provide limited benefit. My recommendation: If you use or intend to use ad extensions, you should upgrade your campaigns. If not, there’s no real need to do so and you can wait until June 2013 when all campaigns are automatically upgraded. Here’s why.
The Useful Features
Improved Ad Extension
Ad extensions is a legacy feature that lets you attach additional relevant information to your ads, such as a phone number or additional links to landing pages. They are a great addition to your ad text as it can provide more relevant information and make your ads visually stand out.
Extensions were already available before enhanced campaigns, but previously you could only set it at the campaign level. Once you upgrade, you can set them at the ad group level, meaning that each group within the same campaign can have different extensions. This increased flexibility is a nice to have feature, but not really a need to have feature.
The other improvement to ad extensions is that AdWords will now report the performance of each extension separately. Individual performance is useful because you can then understand which sitelinks are delivering high CTR and which ones aren’t. Using that information, you can experiment with different sitelinks to find the best performers.
Non Useful Features
Bid adjustments is an intriguing change that is relevant for paid AdWords accounts but not for Google Grants. Basically Google is trying to make it easier to differentiate and manage both mobile campaigns and desktop campaigns. In that effort, they have enabled enhanced campaigns to adjust the bids for mobile keywords in relation to desktop ones, because each auction will perform differently.
Why this is not a huge benefit for grantees is that the majority are spending under the $10,000 per month limit. Since you’re not limited by budget, you should always be bidding the maximum amount, $2.00, to attempt to get the best position all the time. Remember that these are free dollars so you don’t have to be quite as discerning as paid advertisers do.
For charities that are reaching $10,000 per month, there can be benefit from trying to adjust your bids to optimize traffic. However, the gains will be incremental and your time would be better spent trying to improve quality score, CTR, landing page bounce rates, or site conversions.
Google AdWords Editor 10.0 is coming out at the end of February, and the update will allow you to upgrade all your campaigns in one click. Otherwise, you will have to upgrade each campaign manually.