SEO News
Google

AdWords Mobile PPC Performance: How it Stacks Up Against Desktop

Lisa Raehsler
by , Comments

At the heart of all the excitement surrounding Google AdWords enhanced campaigns rolling out this summer is the mobile strategy.

When mobile and tablet campaigns are required to be included with desktop, how will this impact results? To be precise, tablet is required and mobile smartphones are weighted as a percentage bid on a scale of -100 to +300 percent, but many advertisers may not know how to analyze the percentage to give.

I dug into a few accounts that combined mobile and desktop (pre-enhanced campaign) to see what we might expect for results and any common trends. These advertisers had no specific mobile strategy, which is a good sample to consider considering that many advertisers have been slow to embrace mobile strategies.

This isn't a scientific study. Rather, it's a snapshot of my observations of mobile and tablet behavior on “average” clients for a few months time period. Use this as an example only to determine how you may approach a full mobile campaign integration.

mobile-performance-snapshot

  • Impressions: Mobile/tablet search impressions ranged from 7 to 40 percent of the total impressions, with B2B on the lower end. Mobile display only ranged from 6 to 30 percent, following a similar pattern to the search by type of client. Impressions aren't clicks or visits, but this provides an idea as to volume and opportunity.
  • Click-through rate (CTR): Mobile tended to have the same CTR as desktop or better. In many cases it was up to a 200 percent increase in the examples I looked at, but that is by no means the standard. Optimizing with mobile specific creative and offers can help pump up CTRs and at the lower CPC.
  • CPC best deals: All "mobile with full browsers" campaigns had lower CPCs – from 30 to 60 percent lower than the average, revealing an opportunity to further explore the bargain CPCs. However, for tablets, the CPCs in many cases were higher than desktop or the account average. Interesting considering there is no bid adjustment in enhanced campaigns for tablets.
  • Conversions: In campaigns targeting all devices pre-enhanced features, the conversions for all mobile comprised 3 to 12 percent of the total account conversions, leaning heavily with tablets. Some of them were even tablet only conversions.

The conversion numbers I observed from mobile devices seems rather disappointing. While this can be attributed to many things, such as volume, offer, usability of the mobile landing page, another reason should be considered.

According to a Google/Nielsen study released in March, three out of four mobile searches trigger follow-up actions, whether it be further research, a store visit, a phone call, a purchase or word-of-mouth sharing. Considering this, the mobile activity we see in performance snapshot may be just the starting point driving multi-channel conversions.

How to approach a mobile strategy:

  • Look at the overall mobile traffic on the website from all sources. Compare to paid search to understand how it is similar or dissimilar.
  • Examine the page per visit, time on site, and conversions from mobile to determine the engagement from mobile. If it's low, new mobile campaigns will likely show more of the same low engagement, so now is the time to optimize the website experience.
  • If there is a decent conversion rate and integration with the site, consider how that can be optimized to a more mobile experience with mobile specific pages, offers, or conversion paths that are easier/quicker for users.
  • Dig into paid search settings by reviewing past mobile CPCs and adjusting enhanced campaign percentage to similar. Review locations or time of day to identify trends and considering bid adjustments to capture this.
  • Plan ahead on ways to increase conversions based on what you know and will learn. Will the optimizations focus on bids, ad copy, landing pages, conversion path, or all of the above?

What results are you seeing in mobile and what tips do you have to maximize mobile for the enhanced campaigns transition?


ClickZ Live San Francisco This Year's Premier Digital Marketing Event is #CZLSF
ClickZ Live San Francisco (Aug 11-14) will bring together the industry's leading online marketing practitioners to deliver 4 days of educational sessions and training workshops. From Data-Driven Marketing to Social, Mobile, Display, Search and Email, the comprehensive agenda will help you maximize your marketing efforts and ROI. Register today!

Recommend this story

comments powered by Disqus