The folks at adCenter are certainly stepping up their game, which is welcome news. It's never a good idea to have all of your PPC eggs in one Google basket.
Over the coming months adCenter usability will improve, which should draw advertisers to the platform. Here's a look at what search marketers can expect.
Quality Score Exposure
We learned last week that adCenter will soon display your keyword Quality Scores. We've known that adCenter has its own Quality Score for a while but we've never gotten a glimpse as to how our keywords are being judged.
The adCenter interface will display a numeric quality score (1-10). The adCenter Quality Score is based on keyword relevance, landing page relevance, and landing page quality (consumer experience).
Here's a screenshot of how your Quality Score numeric value will appear:
Simplified Budgeting and Budget Notifications
With a blend of monthly and daily budgets, managing your spend in adCenter can be slightly convoluted. However, a fix is in the works.
Currently in adCenter the monthly budget option is pretty straightforward; but if you choose the daily budget option then you also need to set a monthly budget. This will no longer be the case. You will be able to set your spend at the daily level and you won't have to set a monthly budget.
Another budgeting update includes the Budget Coach module. This new feature gives advertisers a comprehensive look at budget issues across all campaigns and provides suggestions in regards to spending.
Also, the Budget Summary report will be a quick reference resource so that account managers can quickly recognize any potential budget issues. Here's a screenshot of the updated Budget Summary report:
Similar to AdWords' Opportunity Tab, adCenter will be launching Campaign Insights. This new feature will provide:
- Keyword bid and positioning suggestions
- Budget issues and solutions
- Negative keyword suggestions
- Keyword expansion ideas
- Match type suggestions
- Pending editorial issues
If these Campaign Insights function similarly to AdWords' Opportunities suggestions, you'll need to take the suggestions with a grain of salt. Remember, these suggestions will be automated based on historical and projected performance. The suggestions provided by AdWords can be helpful but they're not always ideal for your campaign.
You know your account best, so any automated suggestions should be considered -- but with caution. It'll be interesting to see how adCenter's optimization suggestions stack up against those from AdWords.
Updated Graphic Targeting
In adCenter, you can target location by city, metro, state/province, and country/region. These options don't allow you to get very granular with your geo-targeting. The local targeting updates within adCenter will allow users to:
- Target via business location
- Target via ZIP code
- Target via radius and specific location
These new options will give a boost to campaigns that need to get more specific with their geo-locations -- especially those campaigns that need to target around a specific business location. Here's a screenshot of the updated geo-targeting options within adCenter:
You can drop a needle on to a map and then indicate the maximum distance from your selected location.
These updates will help users get more out of adCenter. We'll be able to see our Quality Scores and optimize accordingly in order to improve performance.
Budgeting will be simplified and the potential to under-spend should be minimized. Geo-targeting will be more specific, which will give a boost to businesses that need to be highly focused in one location.
The one thing that could give adCenter the biggest boost in new advertisers is siphoning away search query volume from Google. Bing's ad platform can slice, dice, jubilee and take the trash, but if it doesn't have a larger amount of search volume, advertisers will continue to focus their attention/budget elsewhere.
Join us for SES New York 2011, the Leading Search & Social Marketing Event, taking place March 21-25. SES New York will be packed with 70+ sessions, multiple keynotes, 100+ exhibitors, networking events, and parties. Learn about PPC management, keyword research, search engine optimization (SEO), social media, local, mobile, link building, duplicate content, multiple site issues, video optimization, site optimization, usability, and more.
SES Denver (Oct 16) offers an intense day of learning all the critical aspects of search engine optimization (SEO) and paid search advertising (PPC). The mission of SES remains the same as it did from the start - to help you master being found on search engines. Early Bird rates available through Sept 12. Register today!