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15% of keywords went 'inactive' with a doubling of min bid. QS still 'ok'. However, ad still shows in #3 slot. I can't tell anything anymore about the state of my campaign keywords.
Let me know when they fix this dog pile. In the mean time I'll continue to work on my Yahoo listings.
Google: Hire a software development manager who has a clue.
Here is a very unsophisticated analysis of what has happened:.
The Min CPC on our most successful keywords has gone up by 0.05cts or around 20%(E.g. before min 0.18 now 0.23). All these keywords have around 5% CTRs and generate the most impressions. These particular keywords also have the most competition in our field.
Some of our less successful keywords with lower CTRs have stayed the same. Some of these keywords have less than 1% CTRs but with a lot less impressions.
Other keywords don't seem to have been effected at all.
I must be an unlucky coincidence that the ones we spend the most money on have gone up ;-)
P.S. The Min CPCs that have gone up, all seem to have gone up in increments of 0.05
You need to go into the keywords tab of an adgroup then select 'customise columns' (which should be to the right of 'search this list'). Select 'show quality score', and you'll get a refresh with the scores.
You should note that you need to do this for each campaign, every time you log in if you want to see QS. Take from that whatever you wish (tinfoil hat for the conspiracy theorists).
It is odd that for adwords, they encourage all of this landing page creation and efforts focused at improving your score in the algorithm,yet for natural serps they preach the exact opposite. They want you to design for the visitor and user experience without a focus on their algorithm. They have always objected to creating landing pages for the sole purpose of gaming their natural serps, but seem to be encouraging you to do it for adwords.
I just don't have time, or enough roi from them to completely redesign my sites for their benefit every time they think its a good idea to turn the knobs a little.
OTOH maybe this week would have been really, really good were it not for the loss of 30% of my traffic due to the QS change reducing thing to "normal".
Google is reverse engineering their Qs algo by looking at who's bidding on what and deriving a bid price slightly above or around the break even point. I don't believe in coincidences and it is not competitors entering the market so it has to be reverse engineering.
EVERY Campaign I have seems to always rise just above break even. And it's not like they are showing comp ads.
The reason I say the QS is bs is that it is derived from bidding and not from factors on your page except for very real products and service.
Example a) If I am marketing ringtones, and I have the basic run-of-the-mill pick-your-carrier landing page how can the min bid for artist A be 4x times higher than Artists B? (just a simple example). There is no artist info on the page, so .... the page is just as irrelevant to one as the other.
Google has figured out through bidding history (i.e continued bidding) where the price point lies and then sets it's min bid there. Off course there are going to be some who still make money.
I am still dabbling a bit in Google but it's just not worth the time except for isolated cases. I much rather deal with YSM and MSN albeit with much lower levels of traffic.
I know many people think Google wants to get in the CPA space and that remains to be seen.
There Quality logic for QS is nonsensical as well as the discrepancy is only <.20 lots of time between what one would pay and what is required and there will always be people who try the .40 bringing low quality while keeping those who know better away.
The point! - in most cases .05 to .10 cents per click is the difference between me spending $100,000 or more per month and spending 5-10K instead. The fact that there QS always keeps me very close but just below even leads me to believe that it's not QS but a bid algo and what can you do?
YSM and MSN love my money and with Yahoo's financial difficulties I have already seen a more "open" policy for me.
I just wish I could tell what is going on with my keywords by looking at the indicators on the screen.
For 11 days now I still have keywords with a:
QS score of 'Great'
Min bid of .03
current bid of .08
QS spyglass tool says keyword inactive because QS is too low and bid needs to increase.
Keyword not showing.
What the f am i supposed to understand from this?
I also have keywords with basically the opposite indicators and the keyword is showing!
that it's not QS but a bid algo and what can you do?
Exactly right. I can't blame G for trying to squeeze a bit of the "consumer surplus" out of us, but I think they're blowing it in their approach. Calling it a "Quality" Score, implying that with hard work on your ads/pages/business model you can avert its wrath, making huge overnight changes that blow apart big chunks of historical volume and any ability to forecast. Not only does Google show a total lack of respect for its paying customers, they make it suicidal to continue spending a large share of ad dollars on Adwords.
I can't say I'm done with Adwords, but I can say I've been aggressively shifting spend away -- both from QS-affeced and QS-unaffected accounts -- ever since April. ROI on Adwords has a heavy, heavy discount when held against ROI from other sources. In other words, I'm willing to pay another source more for the same result if I can expect not to be jerked around. Unpredictability carries a price, and I think this has been underestimated in G's execution.
Like everything in life, it boils down to: MONEY. Always follow the dollar and you'll have your answer.
Our campaigns have seen about 35% of our words go dark. This move had nothing to do with quality. If you start to research you'll find that the words going down are the ones that likely get the highest actual clicks - since those KWs (typically) also get more impressions, the CTR will be lower. G is wanting more for the higher number of clicks, while claiming it is lower CTR/quality that "forced" them to shut it down.
Someone pointed out the plural issue - definitely going on, and this is the other group of words most will notice if they research what has been shut down.
My support tech is trying to explain that issue now by saying it is "user behavior"...what a joke.
Using their own tools (which we used to construct the campaigns), one can derive no difference in approx traffic or searches. Simply put, if you have (for example) "shoe" and "shoes" running to the same page, with shoe or shoes in the url, title, headers, tags, and content/text - there is no excuse for shutting down a plural except to increase revenue.
Google is driven by profit - the only language they understand is money. The only way to reverse this squeeze is to hit their bottom line, and refuse to up your bids. Shift some funds from your google budget, and focus on other campaigns with other providers such as yahoo (yoverture), or msn (mighty sad network).
So - here's the bottom line, and my question to all:
What are you going to do about it?
What are you going to do about it?
I don't know the exact figure off the top of my head but I've diverted somewhere in the lower 8 figure range of USD for many clients away from Google recently.
Ironically the shotgun approach is starting to give a better return meaning it used to pay to have a sure shot on Google and get a certain return but now it is not so sure anymore and paying a few pennies on the lower tiered engines is having a better return. It's like we've come full circle or at least are almost there.
Adwords is one big "take away".
Google provides no SOLID info on what they are up to with their latest changes.
We have several 10+K accounts and I am getting to the point where I do not even bother speaking to our reps over the phone anymore.
It is the same vague vague vague vague discussions about what is going on.
Google is one big take away.