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Must Haves for PPC Accounts

Discussion in 'Websites, SEO, SEM, Display, Social, Marketing' started by mwpistell, Jul 24, 2013.

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  1. mwpistell

    mwpistell
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    Getting Refreshed

    First Name:
    Michael
    Dealer or Company Name:
    Honeyguide SEM
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    Hey everyone,


    I’ve been doing automotive PPC for about 3 years now, I’m certified in Google AdWords, Microsoft AdCenter, and I have an Analytics certification pending. I want to take you behind the scenes and show you some of the proven ways I send qualified traffic to sites and generate leads for dealers. I’ll be continuously updating this thread over time with some of my secrets and answering any of your PPC questions, sorta like my version of Uncle Joe's Make Over Diary ;)

     
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  3. mwpistell

    mwpistell
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    Michael
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    Earn more leads with this efficient AdWords campaign - SUV Edition


    Over the last few years I’ve reviewed and fixed thousands of automotive PPC campaigns, and I’ve noticed that most dealerships do not have a PPC campaign for their SUVs. The ones that do often have a very cumbersome and inefficient campaign that ends up hemorrhaging money from the dealer. Let me help you build a better SUV campaign.


    There are two common characteristics of an SUV campaign that badly needs an intervention:
    1) Very high bounce rate, often over 65%. This means that 65%+ of your potential buyers came to the site and visited no other pages. This brings your average Pages Viewed and Visit Duration down. It’s a good indicator that your campaign needs help.

    2) Campaign uses many thousands of keywords
    , most of which have low Quality Score and low search volume. This is dead weight that brings your account Quality Score down and also indicates poor campaign structure. Huge campaigns often provide no additional benefit and are cumbersome to manage and analyze, let’s simplify your approach.



    To send more qualified buyers to your site you’ll have to consider that structure plays a large role in any campaign’s success. A logically organized campaign with a clear strategy will cut down your PPC management time in half, allowing you to focus on big picture projects.


    Most marketing managers have got bigger fish to fry than to figure out the joys of campaign management minutiae. Ask a marketing manager what his top 20 short term projects are and I guarantee you that SUV Quality Score monitoring doesn’t make the list, too many bigger targets. So let me do the heavy lifting for you, here’s my proven way on how I send high quality SUV buyers to dealer’s sites in 3 steps:



    1. 1) Make sure your AdWords account is linked with your Analytics and Places account.
      1. You do have Analytics and Places accounts, right? Without Analytics we can’t measure potential buyer activity on the site, do this first.
        1. If you need help or you’re not sure if your accounts are linked then just ask me and I’ll be glad to help you out.
    2. 2) Make sure your SUV campaign has the right settings.
      1. This is a technical and often overlooked part of campaign management, but its importance can’t be overstated. This is the foundation that you will build your success on. Again, I can look over your settings for you if you’re not sure or don’t have the time, no problem.
        1. Type - It’s important to not run Display and Search in the same campaign in order to make your life easier. Select Search Network Only
        2. Networks - Make sure you start out by including Google search partners (SPART) to reach a wider audience.
        3. Devices - Does your site have a mobile version? If not then bid -100% on mobile devices since they are much less likely to convert.
        4. Location - In campaign management it pays to not be greedy. Don’t set your location radius to the entire state/province or else you’ll be targeting and spending money on non-buying traffic. I know the temptation is great to cast a wide net, but a net this large will tangle up your budget. In my experience, there’s only been a handful of campaigns I’ve recommended state-wide targeting, and this SUV would not be one of them. Save your money and go local, I start out with 30 miles around your store, watch how traffic reacts, then decide to increase or decrease target radius.
        5. Bid strategy - Start off with manual maximum CPC bidding for the best control over your results. Once we get data coming into the campaign then we start the party with different bid strategies.
        6. Delivery method - Standard is the best starting point. When I first install your SUV campaign I want the ads to show evenly throughout the day. Most conversions will typically happen in the morning and late in the evening, so its best to avoid Accelerated delivery when starting out. If you can afford the fast pace of Accelerated delivery then by all means go ahead, but for most dealers it’s safe to start with Standard.
        7. Ad scheduling - Since we lack customer data and conversion trends, start out with 24/7 scheduling. Once we get conversion data flowing we can exclude blocks of time from our ad schedule and ensuring that conversion-rich time periods have more money to show more ads to potential buyers.
        8. Ad rotation - We need our text ads in each ad group to compete against each other in order to find the winner. Setting ad rotation to Rotate Evenly for 90 Days ensures that our text ads are competing against each other on an even ground, which will allow us to pause the least effective ads with higher confidence.
    3. 3) Create a comprehensive SUV campaign with logically organized ad groups.
      1. You’re overhauling your SUV campaign right now, time to pause the old ad groups and call in some heavy artillery with specialized ad groups rich in high Quality Score keywords and appropriate negative keywords. Do this right and the competition doesn’t stand a chance. Here’s how my SUV campaigns look like:
        1. My SUV campaigns have 8 different sections, each one targets a sphere in the SUV buyers universe, and each section targets new and used SUVS. This campaign structure is the result of a hundred+ hours of personal research that I’ve done over the last 3 years, and the results speak for them self.
          1. 01 - Generic
            1. This section will typically be the conversion workhorse in your campaign. The keywords in this section target the top of the conversion funnel where buyers know they want an SUV, but aren’t sure which make/model or class.
          2. 02 - Regional
            1. Important section that takes advantage of a user’s location. This section uses locational and SUV keywords together to target local traffic even more efficiently.
          3. 03 - Make
            1. Dealers know there are many SUV buyers who are loyal to a brand, and there are some brands that perform unusually well in certain locations. Section 3 takes advantage of this by targeting traffic that Sections 1 and 2 would have missed.
          4. 04 - Model
            1. When I setup this campaign, I always ask dealers if there’s a specific make or model they want extra emphasis on. If a dealer is, for example, keen to move extra Buick Enclaves this month, then Section 4 goes up with the specific model. This section typically has higher CPC keywords and changes are made frequently. The end results is more model-specific conversions.
          5. 05 - Class
            1. Some buyers are partial to a certain class of SUV, some are looking only for Luxury, while some want Midsize. This is a section of buyers who often go untargeted, which gives us a huge opportunity to reach out and serve ads.
          6. 06 - Price
            1. This is section of buyers that know they want an SUV and for a certain price. They are close to the end of the conversion funnel and are looking to convert. Section 6 targets this conversion-fertile group.
          7. 07 - Specials
            1. This section is likely to be low traffic and high CPC due to the more competitive nature of keywords at auction. Section 7 targets an audience at the bottom of the conversion funnel by serving up ads to buyers actively looking for a deal on SUVs.
          8. 08 - Colors
            1. For a long time this was an experimental section, but the data doesn’t lie so Section 8 found its way into my roster. This section focuses on traffic that’s looking for a specific color of SUV. Maybe people get tired of riding in gray cars, but there are people who convert based on color. This will be a low maintenance and low traffic section. Usually color visitors only convert on Luxury SUVs.


    Here’s what the above campaign would look like in the wild:
    [​IMG]


    Wrapping up, what are the benefits to installing this new efficient SUV campaign?

    1. 1) Easy to track and manage campaign. You might think the above campaign would be too cumbersome to manage with all those ad groups, but there are less than 200 active keywords in use.
    2. 2) Your dollar goes farther. Due to the keywords used and the organization of the campaign, the bounce rate will typically rival your site average. Why have a campaign where 50% of your paid traffic bounces when you can reorganize and bring that figure below 10%?
    3. 3) Earn more leads. Since you’re now sending high quality traffic to your site you’ll start to see more more test drives scheduled, more credit applications filled out, more pages viewed, and all at a lower CPC than your previous SUV campaign.


    Final thought, here’s a site usage statistics screenshot of this SUV campaign that I installed less than 2 weeks ago:
    [​IMG]
    This campaign was at a steady $10/day and it’s killing it, we just tripled its budget on Friday to take advantage of its high performance. Check out that Bounce Rate and Pages per Visit.


    If anyone wants a campaign like this in their AdWords arsenal, or wants me to look over how their setup is going then feel free to PM me or send me an email, I’m more than happy to help out.
     
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    #2 mwpistell, Jul 24, 2013
    Last edited: Jul 24, 2013
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  4. Alexander Lau

    Alexander Lau
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    ^ Quite useful, still. Needs to be bumped.
     
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  5. mwpistell

    mwpistell
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    Even after 5 years, this is still relatively the same approach I use for campaign creation.
     
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  6. Alexander Lau

    Alexander Lau
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    Yeah, I stumbled upon it and thought, that's still very much relevant. :-)

    There should be a f*cking GOLD FRAME around this post, but what do I know...
     
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    #5 Alexander Lau, Jun 22, 2018
    Last edited: Jun 22, 2018
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  7. Mid-Grade Ford

    Mid-Grade Ford
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    Abe
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    Would by nice to try out a strategy like that but we are extremely limited by Ford and their rules about co-op funds. They actually sent a guy to the dealership one day and to insist that I stop buying keywords for "new car for sale" lol.
     
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  8. John V.

    John V.
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    John
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    You have a rolling 90 day screenshot from something recent? The website example you used had an average site bounce rate of only 8.98% - that's unfathomable nowadays.
     
  9. Alexander Lau

    Alexander Lau
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    First Name:
    Alex
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    That sucks, but does not surprise me.
     
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  10. Alexander Lau

    Alexander Lau
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    First Name:
    Alex
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    http://www.hootinteractive.com/
    The automotive industry’s first dedicated platform for integrating vehicle inventory with advertising campaigns.

    LOVE, LOVE, LOVE them!
     
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  11. Karen Ann

    Karen Ann
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    First Name:
    Karen
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    Steve Marshall Ford Lincoln
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    You can create ad campaigns that are not co-opable; so much freedom!!

    But, I'm still a little salty I can't co-op Snapchat ads that include all the mandatory creative.
     
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