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January 24th, 2008, 11:30 PM #1Adwords - Broad search not broad??
Something I've recently noticed in Adwords is that either I don't understand the philosophy behind a 'broad search', or Adwords is doing something weird.
Here's the quandry. I'm bidding on the broad keyword
I would expect that to also match up to a search for
xxxx at yyyyy
but it doesn't ever seem to. And when I say it doesn't, it's not because I can't find it in the multiple pages of Adwords ads that show up..... there are only 2-3 ads that do show up per page and mine isn't one of them.
Can anybody offer an explanation for this?
I'm also seeing the same type behavior with singular and plural forms of words. According to the Adwords help page, I should only have to enter either the singular or plural form of the word, and Adwords would match either to both in a search. Again, I don't see that happening.
Thanks in advance!
January 24th, 2008, 11:48 PM #2
it can be a multitude of reasons, but the most common reason has to do with budget. If your budget is not at 100% Share of Voice your ads will not be shown on 100% of searches, broad or exact match. Another reason would be your ad quality score, if it is low you will be losing impressions for this reason as well. Also if you have your settings set at spread evenly through the day instead of serve ads as quickly as possible, that will affect your number of impressions.
I am only giving some of the generic reasons for this to occur, without knowing the terms, seeing the landing page, the ad, your bid and your daily budget I can't give you an exact reason. But typically when this issue hits any of the PPC campaigns I manage, I go through a check list of reasons for this and see if I can find the problem, I would say that 90% of the time I do, but the other 10% generally lands me on the phone with my account manager.
January 24th, 2008, 11:56 PM #3
do you have any geographical limitations on your ads?
January 25th, 2008, 12:05 AM #4
My geographic limits are to the US, so I wouldn't expect them to affect my searches. I only search from the US
I've got the campaign set on "Accelerated: Show ads as quickly as possible"
and I'm nowhere close to my daily budget.
The keywords I'm referring to are ranked 'Great'
January 25th, 2008, 01:53 AM #5
Quality score is the issue here. And there are two aspects to it:
1) Google's algorithms are far from perfect. Although it may be obvious to a human that the plurals of xxxx yyyyy or variations such as xxxx at yyyyy are closely related to the keyword xxxx yyyyy, don't assume that the algorithm will think the same. And the less relevant the actual query is deemed to be your keyword, the lower the quality score and the higher the minimum bid for your ad to appear. As a result, there can be many "obvious" variations of xxxx yyyyy that have a minimum bid higher than what you have bid for the broad matched keyword.
2) Even if the algorithm realizes that your keyword is very closely related to a variation of it, the variation could still have a high minimum bid -- just as it would if you bid on that variation as an exact match. Some keywords are just plain old tough to get low min bids for because of factors outside of your control. For example, suppose you have a $0.05 min bid for the broad match keyword norton ghost, on which you bid $0.25.... for the variation norten ghost the min bid will likely be $0.50 or higher because that query results in low ad CTRs for everyone (because most people click on Google's "Did you mean: norton ghost" link instead of any of the ads shown on the page). In this case, even though the relevancy is known to Google there is a high minimum bid because of the very low CTR.
Anyway, using broad match can get quite frustrating and annoying at times. My use of it is usually limited to research for finding related search queries that I've not yet thought of. And as I do find more of those related queries, I specify them as their own exact match and/or phrase match keywords. That way I also get more granular control over my bids and positions for those keywords. And it can improve ROI analysis as well.
January 25th, 2008, 10:08 AM #6
Doesn't AdWords start broad matches off like they were exact matches, and only expand them to broad matches when they've performed well as exact matches? I could be wrong, but I think I remember reading that somewhere. It would be a logical way of doing it.
If that's the case, broad matches will only function as broad matches after they've developed a bit of history and performed well.
Hopefully someone a little more experienced with AdWords can either confirm or let me know that I'm delusional.
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