AdWords Now Tells Advertisers About Competitors' Performance

Google Adwords is firing up a new tool, Analyze Competition, designed for advertisers to measure how their campaign performs compared to competition. So now instead of solely having their own metrics, advertisers can look at their campaign ROIs within the landscape of relevant/similar keyword categories. That easy. Really.

How It Works
First, take a look at the dashboard, this is what it looks like.

AdWords competition feature.JPG
What Analyze Competition does is measure your performance over the past two weeks. It uses categories stemming from your products or services keywords to then give you perspective on how your competitors are doing in those precise categories.

The metrics it'll be looking at are impressions, clicks, click-through rates, and average ad positions. Categories are based on actual search terms and are matched up against your keywords, ad text, and landing page text.
Analyze Competition will give you indications on how you fare, with "the exact size of your competitive range, the mean and median performance levels for this range, as well as data on the absolute top and bottom performers," AdWords said in a blog post. Data can also be segmented by geographical localization of advertisers.

Added Value
When running a campaign, seeing what the competition's performance is always a good indicator of adjustments one may make in order to be more efficient. And this is precisely what Analyze Competition offers.
Advertisers can get inspired by what similar businesses do better than them and take heed to adjust their keyword choices, review their bids and budget, for example.
'Spying' on your neighbour also gives you the opportunity to re-evaluate your metrics and decide whether you want to change your KPIs or tweak them a little to be more relevant to your activity within a given context. You might even want to drop some of them, for all we know.

Don't get too hyped up though. You won't be able to see individual performances, it's not like you're sitting in a theatre for a show, although you might like it to be so. No, AdWords insists that what you'll be able to compare your individual activities to is "the average performance of other advertisers in the same category." This is no social site, i.e. no profiles, no pictures - just anonymous data in the form of bar graphs.
AdWords pledges to never "reveal information about any advertiser's identity" as part of the company's "commitment to protect your privacy."

If you'd like Adwords' story-telling, here it is:

Analyze Competition is currently only available to English-language users. AdWords will roll it out to other languages "in the near future."

How do you like it?

About the author

Liva Judic joined Search Engine Watch and ClickZ in May 2010 as a news blogger. She has lived and worked across the globe in Madagascar, Switzerland, London, NYC, Asia and is now based in between New York and Berlin.

Her background is in government relations and financial media where she started out as a journalist at Bloomberg and became senior editor at AFX news (now part of ThomsonReuters). Prior to forming her own consultancy Judic was head of international PR for a head of state.

Judic focuses on facilitating brand and marketing transitioning for European startups moving to the US. She has been named one of the Top 50 Industry Influencers of 2014 by AGBeat