Over the past year, PPC best practices underwent a significant transformation. Google started pushing a more consolidated approach, advocating for fewer campaigns with a higher density of keywords.
Broad match keywords, once overlooked, have emerged as more important elements in PPC strategies. Despite previous views, advancements in how Google handles broad match keywords have led to impressive results.
Data-Driven Attribution Takes Center Stage:
The shift from last-click attribution to Data-Driven Attribution (DDA) marked a pivotal moment in 2023 for Paid Media. Google's sunset of attribution models, except for DDA and last click, urged advertisers to reassess their perspectives.
DDA, with its capacity to learn and allocate conversions across Google campaigns, emerged as a more accurate reflection of a budget's efficacy, despite its subtle nature.
Bing's Rise in Relevance:
Bing, often overshadowed by Google, gained renewed interest with the integration of ChatGPT. The prospect of ‘Google it’ becoming 'ChatGPT it' and emphasising the potential impact of AI on search engine preferences.
While Google remains dominant, advertisers are now considering Bing as a viable channel, prompting a reevaluation of Bing-specific strategies.
Google's Embrace of Cross-Channel Campaigns:
The introduction of Performance Max and the subsequent release of Demand Gen in October showcased Google's persistent push toward cross-channel campaigns.
Despite initial resistance to Performance Max, advertisers found value in meeting consumers across various Google campaigns, leading to more profound results.
Looking ahead to 2024, what will this year hold for PPC?
The role of Artificial Intelligence (AI) in PPC is set to evolve further in 2024. Google's recent announcement of a generative AI experience promises to enhance creativity by autonomously generating text and image assets.
This integration, resembling ChatGPT, utilises past performance data to inform asset generation, offering a more tailored and effective approach.
Continued Emphasis on Data:
In 2024, accurate data collection remains paramount. With the rise of automation and sophisticated algorithms, precision in data becomes crucial.
Conversion tracking takes on heightened importance, especially with smart bidding and cross-channel campaigns.
Potential Sunset of DSAs in Favour of PMax:
While not officially confirmed, signs point to the possible sunset of Dynamic Search Ads (DSAs) in favour of Performance Max (PMax).
Notifications within accounts and subtle hints from Google reps indicate a shift, with PMax demonstrating stronger performance for some advertisers. The detailed search term reports offered by Google provide valuable insights, mitigating concerns over limited visibility.
Advice for Your 2024 PPC Strategy:
Embrace Change and Test:
Don't shy away from testing within your account.
Embrace evolving best practices, even if they challenge conventional ways of success. The resurgence of broad match keywords serves as a testament to the importance of adapting to change.
Exercise Caution with Google's Recommendations:
While Google advocates for certain strategies like broad match, PMax, and smart bidding, remember that what works for one may not work for all.
Google Ads' Experiments feature provides a controlled environment to assess changes without impacting overall account performance.
Use this tool to stay agile, continuously refining your strategies based on real-world data.