We hit a pretty huge milestone this month: Over the past five years, our AdWords Performance Grader has delivered more than 1 MILLION free reports (over $9 billion in unique ad spend) and helped countless businesses and marketing agencies of all sizes and all over the world understand how their AdWords accounts are performing and where they’re missing opportunities.
In those five years, AdWords itself has changed a lot. We’re constantly evolving our software and tools to stay on top of changes in AdWords and provide more actionable insights for our users. Today, we’re announcing one of the biggest updates in AdWords Performance Grader history – new support for Expanded Text Ads and greatly enhanced mobile data and analysis, including new mobile insights throughout the Grader report.
Change is a constant in the online advertising industry, but recently it has been focused around the mobile revolution. Mobile now accounts for over 50% (some say 60%!) of Google searches. To put that in context – more people buy mobile phones (and, we assume, conduct mobile searches) each year than buy toothbrushes. Given this reality, AdWords has shifted to a mobile-first approach. What this means is that we as businesses can no longer address desktop audiences first and leave mobile as an afterthought.
We also recognize the importance of Expanded Text Ads – Google is calling this its biggest change to AdWords in 16 years, and they aren’t kidding. This update, which roughly doubles the size of each ad, is a game-changer, and early adopters have the opportunity to really get ahead of the curve. (Read more about ETAs here).
To help you understand the impact of Expanded Text Ads on your account, we created a brand-new section specifically focused on the new ad type, as well as unlimited access to our Expanded Text Ads Guide + Cheatsheet.
Below, I’ll take you through the changes step-by-step and what you can expect to learn about your account performance when you get your free report.
*NEW* Expanded Text Ads Section
Expanded Text Ads are here, and that means you have some work ahead of you. Google and WordStream agree that to benefit from this change, simply “converting” your existing standard text ads into ETAs won’t cut it. ETAs require you to rewrite your copy and change your approach.
As the deadline approaches, it’s time to start thinking about the transition and how you’ll tackle it. The Grader will check up on your progress so far and includes a simple guide to creating successful ETAs. You can also learn more about what ETAs are and how you are doing with the ETAs you already have going.
In-Context Mobile Insights
We’ve discovered that it’s much easier to fail on mobile – mobile CTR drops off a whopping 45% just between positions 1 and 2. And mobile CPC’s, formerly much cheaper than desktop clicks, are rising fast.
So let’s take a look at how the AdWords Performance Grader helps you understand and improve your mobile performance. The updated version of the Grader has new mobile insights sprinkled throughout four key sections: Click-Through Rate Optimization, Text Ad Optimization, Best Practices, and Mobile Advertising.
Click-Through Rate Optimization
Keywords and ads perform differently on mobile vs. desktop. To highlight your device-based challenges, we have segmented out both average position and CTR by mobile, desktop and overall (includes all device types). With this new level of information, you can optimize your ads for specific device types to get the most out of your PPC budget.
Text Ad Optimization
Understanding ad performance is very important so you can replicate your successes and avoid tactics that aren’t working. Ads perform differently on different devices, so we now segment out your best, worst and average-performing ads by device. This way, you can see which ad copy is best for mobile vs. desktop. Users can then build on this device-specific success.
We have added a new mobile best practice check. The check is designed to see if your account is using mobile bid modifiers (mobile device bidding) on any ad group. Modifying your bids for mobile is a great way to be smart about your budget and target mobile impressions for mobile-optimized ad groups.
The Mobile Advertising section has been completely redesigned. This section helps you understand how your mobile budget and mobile ad optimization compare to others in your industry, with in-depth cost-per-click analysis to show how your mobile-specific bids stack up against the competition.
NOTE: This section is available exclusively for WordStream customers. However, all the other mobile features above are available to all.
Here’s to the Next Million!
Check out the updated AdWords Performance Grader now – free as always and better than ever.