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Going from "Great" 0.03 bids to "Poor" 0.50 bids

How can this be

     
4:23 am on Jun 8, 2007 (gmt 0)

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So I've had a campaign running for keyword and I happen to have keyword.org as the domain. Ad and landing page are all about keyword. Suddenly overnight all the keywords that were getting double digit CTR's have been reevaluated to "poor" and I've been asked to pony up 20X more per keyword.

Anyone else seen this and why would this be when everything is relevant? BTW I don't use analytics or anything else to allow any tracking of conversions from their side, but I can tell you the kw's that got bumped up high were converting.

5:14 pm on June 14, 2007 (gmt 0)

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Amount of content should not reasonably be the issue here - I cannot imagine that to be true. A valid ecommerce website with 10 skus would have very little content. Meanwhile a MKA site would have a lot of content. Assuming MKAs are there with affiliate sites in the googe gargage bin, this would not be an accurate predictor of "quality" for them.
5:15 pm on June 14, 2007 (gmt 0)

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Just on a sidenote - I am offended at being treated like a criminal by Google. I can't even talk to a person or get anything 'other' than a canned response. They FIRED me, and the 60,000 a year I spent with adwords (and that doesn't mention my adsense earnings that they take part in) - and I can't even talk to a real person, much less get a real answer.

I guess they helped make my business profitable, and now they can crush it too. It just doesn't make sense why they would actively hurt themselves in the process. I supply thousands of pages valuable free content to a population of people that can really gain a lot from my hard work.

It's nice to see that adsense ads displaying on my site ads from 'competitors' that I never considered competitors in the past - because their product was CRAP. Good to know that they are allowed to stay.

5:39 pm on June 14, 2007 (gmt 0)

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I had some .30$

Yes. But I bet there were more advertiser paying higher ppc for that specific keyword. Now that your $.30 is gone the combined average ppc is higher and Google visitor will be clicking on one of the remaining higher paying ads.

Everything goes by keyword search level so theoretically a $5.00 keyword could go inactive if there are other advertisers that are paying $6.00 - $10.00. Why would Google want someone to click a $5.00 ad instead of an $8.00 ad?

Of course there is a little bit of randomness to the algorithm thrown in so it doesn't look like an obvious price hike. This way every advertiser has a different story to tell.

It isn't a coincidence that Google beats earnings estimates every quarter.

iPo

5:54 pm on June 14, 2007 (gmt 0)

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this is funny.
I use the worst and most spammy tactic from google's point of view: merchant's page in an iframe on my URL.
ZERO content of my own.
ZERO content on the landing page.
Quality score: Great.
7:15 pm on June 14, 2007 (gmt 0)

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idolw - can you show me how to turn my good content into a spammy site so that Google won't slam me? Or do you think it is too late to turn my site into a spam site - since it has provided quality content for several years...

Damn. How can I make my sites into spam sites so I can be accepted again?

7:21 pm on June 14, 2007 (gmt 0)

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ScubaAddict

I sent you a sticky message. Let me know if you didn't get it.

7:35 pm on June 14, 2007 (gmt 0)

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ScubaAddict - you should find someone to take an objective look at your site, and maybe make some suggestions. It's hard to be objective about our own sites (I know I'm not) but a lot easier to look at someone else's.
7:47 pm on June 14, 2007 (gmt 0)

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cabbagehead:
Amount of content should not reasonably be the issue here

And it isn't. But neither is a "quality score". This is classical money grab by Google, this has been gradually going on for over a year now, with threads popping up here once in a while.

These threads got brushed away with comments like "improve quality", or "affiliates get the short end of the stick". Neither of these statements is true. This is a gradual money grab, after YOU and your competitors basically handed Google your commercial stats FOR FREE with Google ANALytics and various other data mining techs. Google is expert on data analysis, we all got what we deserved - a price hike on topics that Google's data analysis said earns money and can be hiked.

You may still be able to find holes, but they are getting smaller by the day.

Was this coinsidental with the date eBay pulled their ads off Google, by any chance?

8:24 pm on June 14, 2007 (gmt 0)

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Damn. How can I make my sites into spam sites so I can be accepted again?

insert your own site into an iframe on a new URL (buy a domain). if does not work, set up a new account and start the new campaign there.
if you try both, it will take you up to 30 minutes total. looks like worth a try.

8:44 pm on June 14, 2007 (gmt 0)

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idolw:

Remember the walls have ears or eyes...whatever that saying is.

8:49 pm on June 14, 2007 (gmt 0)

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idolw:

Remember the walls have ears or eyes...whatever that saying is.

Yes, soona99, but no need to worry - as evidenced by this thread - the walls are completely DEAF and DUMB!

Got your sticky - Thanks! :)

9:15 pm on June 14, 2007 (gmt 0)

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I'm curious, how many of you impacted by the QS change use the Google Conversion Tracking code or Google Analytics?

I've read a lot of people saying their best converting keywords took the biggest CPC hit. There are only a few ways that Google would actually be able to attempt to correlate this data if you didn't have the code in place. If you did have it in place it would certainly change Google's stance about providing those tools for "your" benefit.

9:41 pm on June 14, 2007 (gmt 0)

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I use G's conversion tracking and Analytics and have not been hit: sailing along with much the same (low) bid prices as for many months now...

Rgds

Damon

9:55 pm on June 14, 2007 (gmt 0)

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I have never used Google analytics or tracking. Never will either!
11:17 pm on June 14, 2007 (gmt 0)

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I use G's conversion tracking and Analytics and have not been hit: sailing along with much the same (low) bid prices as for many months now...

Me too, across eleven accounts.

11:29 pm on June 14, 2007 (gmt 0)

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I'm curious to know the extent of those affected. Is this just a vocal minority on this thread? 10%? or are 90% of users affected?
11:59 pm on June 14, 2007 (gmt 0)

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I'd have to think it over for a while but Idolw brings up an interesting point I've never given enough thought to. Is it wise to be using your own business domain or anything but throw-away domains in Adwords to begin with? I mean really its no mystery these Google people are mining every piece of data they can lay they hands on. Invariably it may lead to price hikes or domain troubles.

In retrospect I use test sites and have always limited giving as much data to Google as possible but have I left a hole you could drive a freight train through. It may be the passage of time but my domains were the most trouble free when they werenít tied into any Google program. The thing is would this turn me into an affiliate of myself. I need to experiment.

4:56 pm on June 15, 2007 (gmt 0)

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Well, guess I'm in the minority because my traffic has gone up since this happened. I guess getting rid of all the crap sites does work!

Thank you Google, keep up the good work, I love making money with you.

8:08 pm on June 15, 2007 (gmt 0)

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As an affiliate I have been watching this thread, and my campaigns, closely. I got hit partially by the QS when it came out initially (last July?), but none of the subsequent times. I didn't make any changes to my site or campaigns to avoid further "slaps".

Anyway, just wanted to put in that I'm an affiliate, sending most traffic to my affiliate site, and also some direct to merchants. However, I didn't experience any changes over the last week. *knock on wood*

I wish everyone luck getting things sorted out. My best advice is to stop investing so much time and energy in G because it's probably too risky, at least for affiliates. Ever since the QS got me the first time around and put the fear into me, I have used my time wisely and put more effort into building up campaigns with Yahoo and MSN, as well as finding various other places to advertise. Because regardless of what happens, DIVERSIFICATION is going to be the best thing you ever did. I promise.

1:54 pm on June 16, 2007 (gmt 0)

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the dust has settled and the oddest thing. My cost has dropped pretty significantly on the stuff that survived. 20%+ drop in overall pricing. The stuff i lost appears to be done for good. I did not go from .1 to $10. So overall that just faded away for now.

I need to dig a bit and see if it is all because of decreased competition or losing some higher priced stuff. Decreased competion is clearly more then 50% of the savings.

What are you seeing now?

6:00 am on June 19, 2007 (gmt 0)

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I was told by my Google rep that the QS penalties are applied manually for 2 reasons:

1. unhappy users are less likely to click on AdWords ads

2. advertisers with quality sites see higher advertising costs when they are forced to compete with ads for poor quality sites

12:55 am on June 20, 2007 (gmt 0)

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Been trying to find ways around the latest QS crap ...

After spending $3MM+ with Google over the last 2 years I think they no longer want my money

Confirmed with my Adwords account rep that now as part of the editorial review process, reviewers also flag poor QS landing pages/domains :-(

Done everything to have the best QS in my niche ... far more than my competition ... but no luck

This is all part of the evil Google empire to squeeze more $ out of advertisers under the guise of "Quality" ... Improving quality and increasing profits must go together :-(

Eventually advertisers will be forced out of the game ... In fact in my niche (which is fairly large) most advertisers have already quit

1:22 am on June 20, 2007 (gmt 0)

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This is all part of the evil Google empire to squeeze more $ out of advertisers under the guise of "Quality" ...

... In fact in my niche (which is fairly large) most advertisers have already quit


If most advertisers are quitting, how is Google squeezing more $ out of advertisers?
1:32 am on June 20, 2007 (gmt 0)

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to squeeze more $ out of advertisers under the guise of "Quality"

QUALITY Ė please, when i bid on "blue round metal widget" and i have it on my page for sale and there is no one advertising, telling me 15 cents minimum because of ok quality is non-sense.

I have been slapped hard, 90% of traffic 5 domains. I got 130% of the traffic back, the problem is that i got it at 23% higher price that i paid for it before.

As for quality if i have a privacy policy and you donít that mean you have to pay 1 cent more for the same traffic? And what if i have a sitemap and you donít another 1 cent? Come on thatís b#llsh#t.

4:05 am on June 20, 2007 (gmt 0)

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""After spending $3MM+ with Google over the last 2 years I think they no longer want my money ""

That sounds like me too.. My account rep was downright insulting to me and told me that adwords might not be right for my business..

I have a very wide variety of sites, some survived and some didn't.. It seems they kept some of the weaker sites and killed some of the better ones..

5:55 am on June 20, 2007 (gmt 0)

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I feel that google looks for quality of ad copy and the keywords used as well. As the quality index is based on a lot more factors and one of them is the combination of the keywords added and the ad copies used.

I feel that might be one of the reason of your quality index going from "Great" 0.03 bids to "Poor" 0.50 bids.

7:45 am on June 20, 2007 (gmt 0)

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The algo has really been tightened up to make more money for G and to reduce possibility of arbitrage.

Traffic leves are down and more expensive. I have NOW started to seriously look at new alternatives as it seems G will in the long run try and squeeze as much as possible. Their arbitrary judgement of qualty vs non quality is a major instability factor and scares the heck out of me.

Today I am high quality....but who knows what will happen tomorrow.

12:20 am on June 22, 2007 (gmt 0)

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Crappy content means high adsense earnings. Thats because people click off to the next site quickly in any way they can.

Google saying they are trying to clean that up is good, lets hope they manage.

My biggest beef is with their own spamming of adwords ads in their own content network. a one tenth of one percent ctr screams of needing better targeting imo. When you add the fact that, at least in my experience, 80%+ of your budget goes to the content network of non targeted visitors its time to switch back to search only for adwords and disable content, broad match etc..etc.

I'd like google accountable for how they spend their advertisers budget. one tenth of one percent clickthrough is horrible and wasting 80% of a budget on that is ludicrous. Why can google spam an add until its budget is exhausted but we cannot chose where we advertise outside of adwords without penalty?

12:27 am on June 22, 2007 (gmt 0)

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Just a thought, most advertising companies have some version of this.

If google places an add in their content network and it under performs due to their targeting to the tune of a one tenth of one percent ctr... it should be free! If google adjusts their network to guarantee at least 2.5% ctr for example through better targeting on their part i'd pay more.

I once saw an atv ad on a diaper website. the alt tag of a toy baby baseball doll image in the lower left corner was "hummm, honda, huminee, huminee weeeee" and the atv ad was a honda. Not great.

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