So today I learned some new things. Well, it was actually on a conference call last Friday but today was the day that I had time to make some of these changes.
I am the Digital Marketing Manager at my company. We are in the e-commerce industry and we help to build, manage, and market our clients websites. For this particular client of ours I solely manage a $40-60k / month digital marketing budget. For me, being 2 years out of college, this is no joke. I have never worked with budgets this large and been in charge of the success. It is both extremely exciting and overly nerve-racking. For one, I get to test all my hypotheses on what works and what doesn’t in the digital marketing world. For two, I have to be available twice per week every week to explain where the money has gone, how it is performing, and what my plans are to keep our sales on the upward trend and constantly optimized. The latter being the tough part. What this has led to is my ability to create highly detailed reports of spend and return. It has given me a great understanding of the larger business picture and what percentage of marketing spend per order or dollar received should be considered successful. It has helped me to think on my feet and to be able to offer solutions to highly respected individuals within companies who have worked with marketing managers with resumes built far before my time. Enough of the build up, let’s get to the meat.
Mobile Optimization //
What did we notice that led to this desire to adjust marketing budgets? Well if you are as in tune with your business metrics as any good marketing manager or business manager is, you will know your way around Google Analytics. Google Analytics provides the insights we need to gauge our decisions. All decisions are best when based off of real metrics and data. Data is truth. One factor that we have known for a while and constantly monitor is our mobile conversion rates. These can be found in Google Analytics, from here on out referred to as ‘GA’, under Audience > Mobile > Overview. Keep a close eye on these numbers because they will tell you how your website performs on desktop, tablet, and mobile and will allow you to make any necessary adjustments based on these numbers.
*See the ‘Ecommerce Conversion Rate’, this is how we know how each platform performs*
So after keeping an eye on these reports and knowing the mobile numbers perform much lower, we checked our paid marketing conversions and reports. To see how our paid marketing efforts were performing and to see our mobile efforts we navigate to Acquisition > All Traffic > Channels > Paid Search. From here, I select +Add Segment at the top of the screen and select Mobile Traffic > Apply. This shows our mobile rates compared to our combined rates.
Now having multiple people with their eyes on these numbers is crucial. We don’t want to overlook anything and we also want to ensure that we are up to date and constantly improving. Knowing that our mobile ads convert at about half or less than our desktop ads do, we knew that it would be beneficial to decrease our CPC bids on these ads. This is not something everyone monitors when setting up Google AdWords or Bing Ads campaigns, the mobile bids. With this data we have found in GA we know that our mobile counterpart performs poorly and therefore we should bid less on these ad placements than we do for the desktop placements. Good thing for digital marketing is that it is easy to make these adjustments.
Making mobile ad adjustments on Google Adwords: in order to do this you can either make the changes directly on the Google AdWords dashboard or you can download the Google AdWords Editor application to do bulk changes. This is a great tool for any marketing manager.
Changes within the Google AdWords dashboard can either be made at the campaign level or the ad group level. I made these changes at the campaign group level because it allowed me to make the adjustments I wanted for each ad group all at once. The change I decided to make was to decrease my bid on mobile placements by 50%. This meant that whatever my CPC bid was for desktop, the mobile bid would be half of that. I felt that this was a good way to keep my mobile campaigns running and to not exclude myself from the incredible traffic source that is mobile shopping, but to also protect my campaign from higher CPC’s when I know from the data that my site performs at a lower rate on mobile.
To make these changes, click on the campaign you desire to edit > select ‘settings’ > devices. Here you will see your various device option for the campaign and the first column next to Device should be Bid Adjustment. Here is where I can click on ‘Mobile’ and type in ‘Decrease: 50%’.
The same process can be taken when diving into separate ad groups if your desire is to edit the mobile bid adjustment separately by ad group.
I have made these adjustments today and I look forward to seeing what improvements or changes may come of them. If anything, I can be comfortable knowing that I have created great ads with targeted keywords and have made the necessary adjustment to my mobile bids based off of true data that shows that mobile performance is lacking. With this knowledge my client and I prefer to pay less for lower performing platforms and have made the necessary adjustments to reflect this.
I hope you have found this information educational and that it may help you when you look to optimize your marketing campaigns and improve your digital strategy.
As always, keep learning.. and read on.