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From my point of view, you shouldn't automatically follow a suggestion from Google, but there is no harm in considering it. [...]
I never follow G suggestions blindly. [...]
Agreed. Having been fooled or given questionable advice a time or two in the past, I have learned to never follow anyone's suggestions blindly - even when the advice comes from a trusted source. Including suggestions from my mother and sister! They absolutely have my best interests at heart, to be sure, but they don't know all the details of my life as well as I do.
So I'd advise taking suggestions for what they are: suggestions. It is up to each advertiser to make an informed decision.
[...] Sure, they may increase your traffic, but honestly we could all increase our traffic if we had a million dollars to spend. [...]
The thing that bothers me about this sentiment is that it seems to conceive of advertising as simply an expense rather than an as investment that one makes in order to see a positive return.
I strongly suggest that advertisers track their results to understand their return on investment, whether they use the tools in their AdWords account, or third party tools. In my view, once an advertiser knows with confidence that for every dollar spent on a keyword they are making more than a dollar in return, then increasing traffic = increasing profit.
once an advertiser knows with confidence that for every dollar spent on a keyword they are making more than a dollar in return, then increasing traffic = increasing profit
Oh how I wish that were true, however this is very rarely the case. I have used the "campaign optimizer" and will continue to play with it but up to now i have found that my ROI take a drastic hit when implementing the suggested changes. Just to be clear, It's not Google's fault, just the way it is.